United in Giving

Today we finish our series in 1 Corinthians. Over the past several weeks we have focused on being United as a Church. United in Christ’s death as we celebrate the Lord’s Supper. United in our serving as we use our gifts to build up the church. United in our love for one another. United in our service as we gather together in orderly worship. United in Christ’s resurrection as we

Big Questions: Suffering 005

http://traffic.libsyn.com/themiddlekingdom/Suffering_005.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSuffering is something that no one is immune to. As much as we would like to avoid it, and try as we might, it comes to us all. But why? Is it because of my sin? Is it because of bad karma? Is it because I lack faith? And does suffering prove the nonexistence of God? After all, if God is all good then

United at the Table

1 Corinthians 11:16-34   Some of our most meaningful moments in life centers around food. Every culture doesn’t just eat it for sustenance but uses it as a means of celebration and community. In my own culture: Thanksgiving is about family getting together, but it isn’t thanksgiving until the turkey is served. Birthdays are about celebrating a person turning a year older, but what is a birthday without a birthday

Big Questions: Hell 004

http://traffic.libsyn.com/themiddlekingdom/Hell_004.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadThere are certain things about Christianity that are…well…hard to accept. There are things that we would rather not think about and certainly not discuss. And if we’re truly honest, many of us have at one point sympathized with Thomas Jefferson for taking a pair of scissors to his Bible. Hell is one such topic that many might feel embarrassed about. In fact, it’s such

Good God Evil World

Text: Romans 8:16-39 LISTEN In 1755 on November 1st, All saints day, in Lisbon, Portugal Christians were gathered together in worship when an earthquake struck the city. 85% of the buildings were destroyed. Of course, the churches were the tallest buildings in the city so naturally the greatest loss of life happened there. It’s known as one of the deadliest earthquakes ever recorded. But the day of terror wasn’t over.

A Tale of Two Cities: Is there really a heaven and hell?

Luke 16:19-31 LISTEN Not to put a damper on our services today, but over the past 30 minutes, while we have been singing and shaking hands and listening to announcements 3,158 people have died (look around you, that almost four times the number of people present today). Can you imagine, if we all dropped dead right now, four times over, and that number just keeps turning over like an odometer

Big Questions: Intro 001

http://traffic.libsyn.com/themiddlekingdom/intro_001.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadWhen it comes to faith there are many big questions to discuss from religion, sacred text, sovereignty in suffering and evil, to sexuality.   Before we begin these discussions we need to lay some ground rules and decide why discuss these topics at all?  Join us in the discussion as we discuss the importance of dialoguing well.

Sex, Singleness, and the Sanctity of Marriage.

Scripture: 1 Corinthians 7   Topic: Marriage and Singleness I’m terrible at opening gifts, mainly because I’m really hard to buy for. Most of the gifts I receive…I just don’t like. My first Christmas with Jenni’s family was horrible because I hadn’t yet learned how to fake excitement. One by one each family member went to her and worriedly asked, “Did TJ like the gift I got him?” Needless to

Bonus: Passover

http://traffic.libsyn.com/themiddlekingdom/Passover.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadThe story of Passover is central to the Christian message. All throughout the Old Testament this shadow of the gospel is repeated until Christ is ushered onto the scene with these words, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.” What is the connection between Christ and this ancient celebration? What are some meaningful truths from this event that

1 Corinthians: Spiritual Gifts 005

http://traffic.libsyn.com/themiddlekingdom/1_Corinthians_Spiritual_gifts.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadToday we are in 1 Corinthians 12-14.  Few topics are as controversial as Spiritual Gifts.  The moment we receive Christ as King we are endowed with gifts that are meant to enable us to edify the church. What are those gifts and how should they function in a church? Resources: Spiritual Gifts: What They Are and Why They Matter, Thomas Schreiner Showing the Spirit: