The Divine Word // John 1:1-18

This week we begin a new series at Restoration Church, a study of the Gospel of John. We’ll work through the entire book over the coming months, examining the claims of Jesus Christ, the implications for the life of the disciple, and the missional-impulse that John calls every Christ-follower to embody in the world. On this week’s podcast we’re studying the dramatic prologue to John’s gospel that ties God’s creative power and revelation together in Jesus Christ.

Questions for Discussion:

  1. What does this passage (John 1:1-18) say about those who believe and those who don’t believe Jesus is God?
  2. What doubts or questions do you have regarding the claim of Jesus?
  3. Based on this passage, how should those who believe be inspired to live on mission in the world?
The Divine Word // John 1:1-18 // January 28, 2020

Listen or watch past teachings, learn more about Restoration Church in Lake Zurich, or connect with us at http://restorationlz.org.

Detox Your Soul: Part 2 // Acts 2:38-41

In this week’s podcast, we’ll address one of the primary issues that prevents us from choosing goodness and righteousness in our lives: pain. Making changes in our life is hard work, and can often be painful. Instead of embracing the pain of change, we often seek to avoid and cover it up, allowing sin to continue to wreak havoc on our souls. Here’s the good news message you’ll learn this week and how to put it into practice: If sin destroys, then Jesus restores. If you are suffering with depression, sadness, anger, isolation, addiction, abuse, or other forms of brokenness in your life, you can’t afford to not find out how God is eager to partner with you in your healing and restoration.

Will you take the “Detox Your Soul Challenge?”

  1. Prayerfully identify and repent of your “drug of choice”.
  2. Choose to follow Jesus and begin a partnership with his Spirit.
  3. Get help by sharing your decision with someone and asking for accountability.
  4. Make a plan with reasonable goals that will help you “detox” and stay healthy.
  5. Grow in the ways of Jesus by investing in a discipleship community.

Resource mentioned in today’s podcast:
Spiritual Discipleship: Principles of Following Christ for Every Believer, by J. Oswald Sanders (Moody Publishers).

Detox Your Soul: Part 2 // Acts 2:38-41 // January 21, 2020

Listen or watch past teachings, learn more about Restoration Church in Lake Zurich, or connect with us at http://restorationlz.org.

Detox Your Soul: Part 1 // James 1:21

In this week’s message you’ll learn why the Christian life is one that embraces a life-long journey of regular, on-going ‘detoxification’ of the whole self — the soul. Through Jesus, we are integrated into a process that continuously renews and restores the heart, mind, body, and spiritual life for God and His Kingdom.

Questions for Discussion:

  1. Will you prayerfully consider what is “unhealthy” in your life right now? What have you allowed in your life that is corrupting your soul and undermining your ability to live as a devoted follower of Jesus and experiencing the fullness of His salvation for you?
  2. What are the implications of doing nothing about it?
  3. How would you go about beginning to detox your life from that thing or things? Who would you need to talk with or ask to help you?
Detox Your Soul: Part 1 // James 1:21 // January 14, 2020

Listen or watch past teachings, learn more about Restoration Church in Lake Zurich, or connect with us at http://restorationlz.org.

God with the Nations // Matthew 2:1-12

This week we look at the story of the “wise men” who traveled a great distance to visit a new born King in Bethlehem. This miraculous event in history demonstrates God’s power, but also His relentless mission to make Jesus Christ known as Savior King for everyone, everywhere!

Questions for Discussion:

  1. What’s something new you learned about the story of the “wise men”?
  2. What is the most challenging thing for you to believe?
  3. What is the most challenging thing for you to do?

Additional Resources Mentioned in Today’s Podcast:

Unwrapping the First Christmas, by Dr. Michael Cooper
Sheep Among Wolves, Volume II (Documentary)

God with the Nations // Matthew 2:1-12 // December 17, 2019

Listen or watch past teachings, learn more about Restoration Church in Lake Zurich, or connect with us at http://restorationlz.org.

God with the Hopeless // Isaiah 9:1-7

The message of Christmas is the story of God’s fulfilled promise to break into the spiritual darkness and depths of human despair to bring permanent light and eternal hope for all. Christmas is the greatest “good news” event in human history that restores hope for the hopeless.

Questions for Discussion:

  1. In what way might you resonate with the story of Israel in the days of Isaiah?
  2. Where can you see God’s glory — his light and hope — already being revealed to you?
  3. How will you step into it that hope by faith?
God with the Hopeless // Isaiah 9:1-7 // December 10, 2019

Listen or watch past teachings, learn more about Restoration Church in Lake Zurich, or connect with us at http://restorationlz.org.

God With Us // Matthew 1:18-25

“Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays”? Today, Christmas is far removed from anything it was originally intended for, replaced with alternative stories and meanings. But why do we celebrate Christmas, and what are the implications for a people that God has revealed Himself to? Christmas declares the Kingdom of God is here.

Passages referenced in today’s podcast:

Matthew 1:18-25
Isaiah 7:14

Resource for Further Reading:
Unwrapping the First Christmas, by Dr. Michael Cooper (2019)

Questions for Discussion:

  1. Reflect on your Christmas and Holiday traditions. Is Christ typically “in”, “under”, or “above” these traditions?
  2. How will you choose the Kingdom of God this Christmas?
  3. How will you extend the Kingdom of God this Christmas?
God With Us // Matthew 1:18-25 // December 3, 2019

Listen or watch past teachings, learn more about Restoration Church in Lake Zurich, or connect with us at http://restorationlz.org.

Presents or Presence? // Luke 10:1-9

On this week’s podcast, we’re considering how we as followers of Jesus can live on mission for the Kingdom over Thanksgiving and the holiday season. Regardless of your plans this weekend, are you more focused on sharing presents or the presence of God with others?

Passages referenced in today’s podcast:

Luke 10:1-9

Questions for Discussion:

  1. Where is the Spirit leading you this holiday weekend? Who do you plan to see or visit with?
  2. How can you be intentional about being aware of Christ’s presence in your life and with those you interact with this week?
  3. What do you sense you should be praying for in those interactions?
Presents or Presence? // Luke 10:1-9 // November 26, 2019

Listen or watch past teachings, learn more about Restoration Church in Lake Zurich, or connect with us at http://restorationlz.org.

A Community that Multiplies // Acts 2:47; Acts 1:8

In the final message of our series on Defining Community, we examine the outcome of biblical community life: Growth! Healthy growth comes out of healthy community life that actively lives on mission in the world. We’ll also examine the common “threats to community” that undermine that mission and its solution: devoting our lives to Jesus Christ and bringing glory to God in all things.

Passages referenced in today’s podcast:

Acts 2:42-47
Acts 1:8
John 3:16-17
John 17:18

Questions for Discussion:

  1. What do you see as being the biggest “threat to community” that you are most susceptible to?
  2. How might you take responsibility for disarming that “threat” and become a full contributor to the community?
A Community that Multiplies // Acts 2:47; Acts 1:8 // November 19, 2019

Listen or watch past teachings, learn more about Restoration Church in Lake Zurich, or connect with us at http://restorationlz.org.

A Community of Prayer // James 5:13-18; Acts 2:42-47

A New Testament church is a community of devoted followers of Jesus who pray – together! Not only is prayer a common practice for common life, but it’s also a means of powerful transformation and restoration. The Kingdom of God is made real and breaks into darkness when the community of the faithful come together and prays over hardships, illness, and sin. A community of prayer is not a community with good sentiments, but a community with real power.

Passages referenced in today’s podcast:

Acts 2:42-47
James 5:13-18
Matthew 6:7-13
1 Kings 17-18

Questions for Discussion:

  1. Do you have a story of a time when you have seen the power of prayer at work among followers of Jesus? Write it down in three or four sentences and plan to share it.
  2. How can we as a community continue to make prayer a central practice? What might you change or improve?
  3. Do you have a hardship, illness, or sin that needs to be shared or confessed? Who should you reach out to this week and ask for prayer?
A Community of Prayer // James 5:13-18; Acts 2:42-47 // November 12, 2019

Listen or watch past teachings, learn more about Restoration Church in Lake Zurich, or connect with us at http://restorationlz.org.

A Community that Feasts // Acts 2:42; 1 Corinthians 10:16-17

The early church loved to eat together! But their feasts were more than after-service potlucks for the purpose of socializing. For them, table fellowship was a tangible expression of the gospel and the presence of Christ among them, rooted in the historical roots of God’s redemptive plan for all people. This week, we’re examining the practice of “breaking bread” together and why – in its purest form – is the central, unifying participatory act of creating and cultivating authentic fellowship and worship in a discipleship community.

Passages referenced in today’s podcast:

Acts 2:42-47
1 Corinthians 10:16-17
Exodus 12
Luke 22:7-20
Revelation 19:19
Genesis 1:29-30

Questions for Discussion:

  1. What is one new thing you learned today that you could share with someone else?
  2. How should understanding “table fellowship” reshape someone’s view of and participation in community?
  3. How could we as Restoration Church (or any community of disciples) grow in our practice of making the gospel visible, shared, and experienced at the table with others?
A Community that Feasts // Acts 2:42; 1 Corinthians 10:16-17 // November 5, 2019

Listen or watch past teachings, learn more about Restoration Church in Lake Zurich, or connect with us at http://restorationlz.org.