Heaven is not a location we go to when we die. In biblical terms, heaven and earth are not two places but two realms or "dimensions" that exist side by side. Heaven is always present, though not always visible. Heaven is the dimension where the presence and will of God is fully expressed-expressed in ways that we never fully experience on earth. Like the curtain between the broader temple and the holiest place, something blocks our view. But occasionally the curtain between the two is blown back, and we see more clearly the heavenly reality. The incarnation through to the resurrection is the main moment of clarity in all of history.
This series, indebted to ideas from Rev. Clayton Libolt, is about contemplating what is beyond the curtain. Much of the frenzy of our lives is because we are seeking the answers to our "heavenly" need though earthly means. The incarnation makes the most sense to our lives as we gaze beyond the frantic activity of the world to the enduring realities that the incarnation promises to us.
|12/26/10||A Rare Gift||Andy Gathman||Matthew 2:1-12||Read transcript||Listen|
|12/24/10 9pm||When Heaven Broke Through||Rev. John Schmidt||Luke 2:1-20||Read transcript||Listen|
|12/24/10 7pm||When Heaven Broke Through||Rev. George Antonakos||Luke 2:8-14||Read transcript||Listen|
|12/19/10||When Heaven Comes to Stay||Rev. John Schmidt||Revelation 21:1-5||Read transcript||Listen|
|12/12/10||When Heaven Came to Us||Rev. John Schmidt||Colossians 2:6-12; 3:1-4||Read transcript||Listen|
|12/5/10||When Heaven Came Back||Rev. Laura Crihfield||Luke 1:26-55||Read transcript||Listen|
|11/28/10||When We Walked With Heaven||Rev. George Antonakos||Genesis 3:1-9||Read transcript||Listen|
Joy in Action
We need to be reminded of the biblical foundations for stewardship. A major part of our Discipleship Path at Central is "Serving". This is the part of discipleship that expresses our desire to worship God by making our lives (time, talent, treasure) available to him. A key question we need to address though is motivation. Why do we serve?
|11/21/10||Joy in Giving||Rev. John Schmidt||2 Corinthians 8:1-9||Read transcript||Listen|
|11/14/10||Joy in Serving||Rev. George Antonakos||John 13:31-35||Read transcript||Listen|
The Prodigal God
In this series we show how the grace of God can form us all at Central Presbyterian Church into a unique and distinctive community. In this parable we usually focus on the younger son. But Jesus told this parable to confront people who were much more like the older brother. We can all fall prey to the 'elder brother' syndrome (believing we earn God's favor in some way) even while we reach out to the 'younger brother' type of people. Most of all in this series we desire to learn about the prodigality of our great God in the display of his grace and love.
Some of our Grow Groups will be following along with this series, using the book The Prodigal God: Recovering the Heart of the Christian Faith, by Timothy Keller, and an associated discussion guide. Prodigal God study materials and other resources are available at www.theprodigalgod.com.
|11/7/10||The Feast of the Father||Rev. John Schmidt||Luke 15:11-32||Read transcript||Listen|
|10/31/10||The True Elder Brother||Rev. George Antonakos||Luke 15:1-10,25-32||Read transcript||Listen|
|10/24/10||The Prodigal Brother||Rev. John Schmidt||Luke 15:25-32||Read transcript||Listen|
|10/17/10||He Came to Himself||Rev. Laura Crihfield||Luke 15:11-24||Read transcript||Listen|
|10/10/10||I Wish You Were Dead||Rev. George Antonakos||Luke 15:11-32||Read transcript||Listen|
|10/3/10||He Welcomes Sinners!||Rev. John Schmidt||Luke 15:1-10||Read transcript||Listen|
|9/26/10||Dogs, Cats, or Sheep?||Rev. George Antonakos||Luke 15:1-10||Read transcript||Listen|
A Secret Kingdom
It's way too easy to view church as something you "go to" in order to improve the rest of life. That view of church gets boring fast, and if that is all we are, then people are right in putting it low on their priority list. But the church is so much more than that. It is God’s prime agent in bringing his kingdom into this world. We need to regularly remind ourselves on the nature of the church and of our calling as followers of Christ. We need help to move from a churchy, religious view of our faith, to a gritty, practical, day to day view of it.
|9/19/10||Secret Agents||Rev. Laura Crihfield||1 Peter 2:11-17||Read transcript||Listen|
|9/12/10||Demonstrating the Message||Rev. George Antonakos||Mark 6:1-13||Read transcript||Listen|
|9/5/10||Telling the Message||Rev. John Schmidt||Matt. 13:10-17,34-35||Read transcript||Listen|
|8/29/10||World Rescue Mission||Rev. John Schmidt||1 Peter 2:9-12||Read transcript||Listen|
|8/22/10||The King is Here||Rev. Eliot Winks||Romans 10:8-17||Read transcript||Listen|
It's Never Too Late
Many people go about believing that God's grace is just too late to experience. They have made too big a mess for too long and that they are not candidates for mercy and grace. It's far too easy to feel like the thoughts and habits of a lifetime pretty much dictate who we will be forever. Christianity is more than forgiveness-it is a new life from the inside out. This series will explore the truth that with God's power, it's never too late to face the issues in our lives.
|8/15/10||It's Never Too Late to Change||Rev. John Schmidt||John 1:35-42||Read transcript||Listen|
|8/8/10||It's Never Too Late to Ask for Help||Rev. Laura Crihfield||Mark 5:12-88||Read transcript||Listen|
|8/1/10||It's Never Too Late for a New Start||Rev. George Antonakos||2 Corinthians 5:16-21||Read transcript||Listen|
|7/25/10||It's Never Too Late to Be Forgiven||Rev. George Antonakos||Luke 23:33-43||Read transcript||Listen|
Forgiveness: A Close Up
When this topic comes up it creates many questions in the minds of believers and non-believers alike. It is not an easy topic! Yet, giving and receiving forgiveness is a life skill that can make all the difference in our experience of God's wholeness in our lives. This series will attempt to address a number of our common questions but more importantly will emphasize the central nature of forgiveness to our spiritual, emotional and mental health. (Series Study Guide)
|7/25/10||It's Never Too Late to be Forgiven||Rev. John Schmidt||Luke 23:33-43||Read transcript||Listen|
|7/18/10||Joseph's God ~ Our God! (VBS)||Rev. John Schmidt||Genesis 50:15-21||Read transcript||Listen|
|7/11/10||Forgiven Forever||Rev. John Schmidt||1 John 5:11-13||Read transcript||Listen|
|7/4/10||The Freedom of Forgiveness||Rev. Ronald Johnson||John 8:31-42||Read transcript||Listen|
|6/27/10||Living Forgiven||Rev. George Antonakos||Psalm 32||Read transcript||Listen|
|6/20/10||How Do I Forgive Others?||Rev. George Antonakos||Matthew 18:21-35||Read transcript||Listen|
|6/13/10||How Can I Forgive Myself?||Rev. John Schmidt||Luke 22:54-62||Read transcript||Listen|
|6/6/10||The Foundation of Forgiveness||Rev. George Antonakos||Ephesians 2:1-10||Read transcript||Listen|
The Holy Spirit
In the Holy Spirit we experience something that even the disciples never knew while Jesus was on earth. The most important features of our understanding is that the Holy Spirit is a person, not some shadowy figure that comes and goes. The Holy Spirit has a specific role in our lives and in our relationship with the Father. He is God present with us. On Pentecost we will begin a 2-week series on the Holy Spirit. The first week will focus on the idea that the Spirit is God's presence within us. The second week will follow with a more detailed look at Spirit's role.
|5/30/10||God's Paraclete||Andy Gathman||John 14:15-27||Read transcript||Listen|
|5/23/10||God's Presence||Rev. Laura Crihfield||John 14:15-27||Read transcript||Listen|
Evangelicals are the least "city-loving" of all Christians. We assume far too often that moving from the city will protect us from problems. It's a false hope. Cities are the cultural shapers of our whole society: where the cities go we all ultimately go. Yet it's not easy to figure out what we need to do as faithful Christians when it comes to reaching out to the cities that surround us. As more and more people become city-dwellers it is imperative that the church understands how to reach out to the expanding cities of the 21st century. ("Driver's Manual" series study guide: booklet or ordered page layouts)
|5/16/10||Joining God||Rev. George Antonakos||Jonah 4:1-11||Read transcript||Listen|
|5/9/10||Sharing the Message||Rev. John Schmidt||Jonah 3:1-10||Read transcript||Listen|
|5/2/10||Time to Yield||Rev. John Schmidt||Jonah 1:17-2:10||Read transcript||Listen|
|4/25/10||Wrong Way, Jo||Rev. Laura Crihfield||Jonah 1:3-16||Read transcript||Listen|
|4/18/10||Go to the Great City||Rev. George Antonakos||Jonah 1:1-2||Read transcript||Listen|
|4/11/10||Jonah - Detour to Nineveh||Rev. John Schmidt||Jonah 1-4||Read transcript||Listen|
|4/4/10||Dare I Believe
|Rev. John Schmidt||Luke 24:1-12,36-49
|3/28/10||Facing Our Darkest Hours
|Rev. George Antonakos||Matthew 26:36-46
One of the facts of modern life is the danger of deep disorientation. We move quickly and are constantly busy-but why? And where are we heading? And while we're at it, who are we anyway? A life full of activity does not mean we have a life full of meaning. In order for our faith to have greater impact on harried lives like these, we will embark on a Lenten series that will focus on the spiritual disciplines (or soul training exercises) designed to help all of us draw closer to God and experience spiritual transformation as a result.
|3/21/10||Simplicity and Margin||Rev. John Schmidt||Daniel 1:6:10||Read transcript||Listen|
|3/14/10||Prayer and Fasting||Rev. John Schmidt||Nehemiah 1||Read transcript||Listen|
|3/7/10||Counting Our Blessings - Gratitude||Rev. George Antonakos||Psalm 131||Read transcript||Listen|
|2/28/10||Search Me - Self Examination||Rev. George Antonakos||Psalm 130||Read transcript||Listen|
|2/21/10||Silence and Contemplation||Rev. John Schmidt||Psalm 8||Read transcript||Listen|
|2/17/10||A Clean Heart (Ash Weds)||Rev. George Antonakos||Matthew 23:35-38||Read transcript||Listen|
|2/14/10||Storms||Rev. John Schmidt||Mark 4:35-41||Read transcript||Listen|
Being a Jesus Follower
It's the start of a New Year and we need to be refreshed in the basics of what it means to be a disciple of Christ. This is an opportunity to cover the basics of discipleship both for ourselves as individuals, as well as for our church as a whole community.
|1/31/10||Sharing Christ with the World||Rev. John Schmidt||Matthew 28:18-20
1 Peter 2:9-12
|1/24/10||Serving and Giving from the Heart||Rev. George Antonakos||Mark 12:38-44||Read transcript||Listen|
|1/17/10||Growing in Faith Together||Rev. George Antonakos||Colossians 1:24-2:7||Read transcript||Listen|
|1/10/10||Knowing God||Rev. Laura Crihfield||Psalm 100||Read transcript||Listen|
|1/3/10||Make Disciples||Rev. John Schmidt||Matthew 28:16-20||Read transcript||Listen|