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Archive for June 2015

Count me out, Jesus!

disciples defect

A fascinating term from the world of literary criticism is The Criterion of Embarrassment.  The idea is simple.  When evaluating the authenticity of a historical document, if the alleged report includes information that could be deemed an embarrassment to the author or characters being written about, then it is often given more credibility.  A purely fictional or forged account would not naturally go out of its way to include anything that might risk calling into question the reputation of the characters in the account.

When we read the New Testament documents, evidence abounds that could be seen as an embarrassment to the chief characters.  Jesus picks a traitor among his closest 12 associates.  Reports of Jesus risking his reputation by touching unclean persons or having conversations with women.  And in the case of UNCONVINCED Week 4 – we’ll look at his own disciples opting out the following.  Jesus’ teachings are just too hard to bear!

Our quest each week in UNCONVINCED is to explore the role of doubt and skepticism in the important process of finding out what faith in Jesus is all about.  Come on out and join us as we look at another example of Jesus dealing with his own skeptics and doubters.

UNCONVINCED meets at Christ Community Church on Sundays in room D-126 during the second service (10:45).  Come on out and bring a friend.  We’d love to have you be a part of the discussion.

 

UNCONVINCED about Jesus – Week Two

week 2 question title

If you thought Jesus had a pretty rough time in his hometown last week in UNCONVINCED, this week he falls straight from the frying pan into the fire!  He flees from Nazareth to Capernaum, but can’t out-run his family.  What would you do if your own mother showed up at your place of employment with a police officer seeking to have you arrested!  “There’s my little Jesus – the one in sandals with the beard.  Yup, he’s completely out of his mind.  Take him away!”

You’d think your own mother would never stop believing in you!  But that’s one thing you gotta love about the Gospels – they’re soooo painfully embarrassing!

Week 2 Handout

Week 2 – Mark 3 Manuscript

Come out for Week 2 of our skeptics series on the life and times of Jesus.  We’ll land in Mark’s Gospel – chapter 3 this week.   UNCONVINCED meets on Sundays at Christ Community during the second service.  Room D-126 at starting at 10:45.   Bring a friend who loves chatting with you about life!  We’re a venue that’s comfortable for those with big questions about God and the Bible.  Grab a coffee and pull up a chair.

Unconvinced….About Jesus – New series starts this weekend.

unconvinced logo jesus

Jesus wasn’t an instant success everywhere he went.  In fact many in his own day found his claims and teaching just too much to bear.  People didn’t believe what he said about himself.  People didn’t trust his theology.  Many simply refused to follow his leadership!  So if Jesus at times proved unconvincing to his own family and disciples, maybe there is a place for doubt in the decision to follow him today?

UNCONVINCED meets weekly at Christ Community Church in room D-126 at 10:45. Each week we’ll tackle another episode straight from the pages of the Gospels.  UNCONVINCED is a venue for those with big questions about God, the Bible and the world we find ourselves living in.

Format

1- Launch: a ten minute warm up to the topic around the table.

2- Explore: a first-hand look at a Gospel text using a simple, unformatted manuscript.  What happened?  Why didn’t the crowd buy what Jesus was saying or doing?  Our goal, in 25 minutes or less, is to identity the core hang-up with Jesus whether it was a single person or a whole crowd of doubters.

3- Questions:  open Q/A with class facilitator about Jesus, his claims, his teachings or anything in the New Testament Gospels.  (15 minutes)

4- Sign-off: How does Jesus answer his doubters – then and now?  What does faith in Jesus look like today?  What did I learn about Jesus today?  (10 minutes)

Series Outline

06.07.15          Is that you, Homeboy?  Jesus is rejected at Nazareth.  Luke 4

Week 1 Handout

Week 1 – MSS Marked

06.14.15          Crazy Talk!  Jesus is deranged or Jesus is demon-possessed – you decide.  Mark 3

Week 2 Handout

Week 2 – Mark 3 Manuscript

06.21.15          You can’t be Serious.  Nobody can do what Jesus requires!  Matt 19

Week 3 Handout

Week 3 – Matt 19 Manuscript

06.28.15          Count me Out!  Grumbling disciples turn back from following Jesus.  John 6

Week 4 Handout

Week 4 – John 6 Manuscript

07.05.15          Power Up!  The power players of Jesus’ day can’t tolerate his claims.

Week 5 Handout

(no manuscript for week 5)

07.12.15           The Rooster Crows.  Public denial of Jesus by his most passionate disciple.

Week 6 Handout

Week 6 Peter Passages

In case you can’t tell, UNCONVINCED isn’t a Sunday School class designed to comfort the convinced believer.  That means it’s the perfect place to bring a friend you know has big questions about Jesus and Christianity.  We hang out around tables, we have great conversations in community, and we know how to agree to disagree when needed.  If you’re coming to UNCONVINCED to win arguments with skeptics, please hold that thought and maybe find another place to sharpen your apologetics.  But if you seriously want to learn and have friends you can invite to join you – then come on out!

Feel free to check out our previous UNCONVINCED series on the book of Exodus.  You can also find more great content on the Questions about God page of the CCC website.