This year’s Lock-In focused on Kingdom Keys. The things that unlock the Kingdom of Heaven and give us access here on Earth.
-Yeah, it’s simple but it’s not always easy for people to do.
-Jesus righteousness makes us heirs to the Kingdom of Heaven. Kingdom Kids get keys.
Authority through Salvation
Ephesians 1:17-22 (AMP)
-We have keys to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. We can unlock doors and experience God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit in a real and meaningful way. These keys are a symbol of authority that we are children of King Jesus.
-Nothing can stop God’s love for us. Our salvation through Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross means that our purpose is sealed and protected. We will be and can be victorious over all the schemes and plans of Satan.
March 4th through March 6th
Bethesda United Methodist Church
11901 Bethesda Church Road
Damascus, MD 20872
Friday, March 4th
Youth Ministry time with Rudi and Sharon from 6:00pm to 7:15pm
Coffee and Cookie Bar from 6:30pm to 7:15pm
Praise and Worship begins at 7:30pm
Featuring transformative Teaching and Ministry from the Holy Spirit through Rudi and Sharon Swanepoel.
Saturday, March 5th
Women’s Breakfast with Sharon Swanepoel begins at 8:00am
Men’s Breakfast with Rudi Swanepoel begins at 8:00am
Sunday, March 6th
Sunday School begins at 9:45am
Morning Worship Service begins at 11:00am
Luncheon following service at 12:30pm
This weekend will be led by Rudi and Sharon Swanepoel of God’s Glory Ministries.
We encourage the youth to come and press in to the things God has for them during this time of revival.
The time of revival in the church is an important time of joining together in corporate worship and unified desire to see God move in and through the church body.
Join us and encourage your youth to join us during this weekend of expectation to see God’s Holy Spirit flow freely in the body of Bethesda as never before.
Friday, November 14th
Who Am I…in Christ?
-What defines you? What about your personality or your character is used to describe you?
-If I am crucified and it is Christ living in me, then my identity must be defined by Him. What does this look like?
-The phrase “identity in Christ” is over-used and not well understood. When I say that my identity is in Christ, I don’t mean that I have it all figured out or that I know what I am (whatever that is suppose to mean). I’m still growing and learning and changing and becoming more like Jesus. My taste in clothes, music, books, tv shows, and food is changing, but those are things that this world mistakes as defining your identity. Our identity in Christ is about deeper things than those.
-When I die to myself, as this scripture explains, it doesn’t mean that I’m no longer unique or that I don’t have my own personality or that I have to look and talk like other Christians supposedly do. I can still be me, but I must recognize that there are aspects of me that Christ desires to work out of me and/or perfect me. Some aspects of my personality, without Christ, could be destructive to me or others, but His perfection brings life.
-This scripture shows us that we can still be the unique individual we are and yet be transformed to be the person God created us to be. They don’t have to be mutually exclusive. We do, however, have to be willing to give up any aspect that Christ wants to change or perfect for His glory.
-Is there something Jesus wants to change in you of which you’re having a hard time letting go?
-Have you owned a part of your personality that Jesus actually wants to change?
-This scripture is often the focus of discussions on salvation. How does it help us to understand identity?
-If we think of “life” here as person or self or personality we can see that our identity in Christ is directly connected to eternal life or what happens to us when we physically die.
-If we wish to keep or hold on to things that Jesus is asking us to let go, we will ultimately be left at a loss. He wants us to give things up, to lose them, with the faith and the confidence that He has an immeasurably greater and better replacement.
-We must be willing to give up our comfort and security we find in being a part of a certain social scene or cause.
-We can’t just live our lives without considering how Christ desires for us to live and the impact He created us to have on the people around us.
-What does it mean that you have died and raised with Christ?
-How does the reality of Christ’s power to change us influence your understanding of what He wants to do with your fears and insecurities?
-The heading for this scripture passage is “Put On the New Self.” Our identity in Christ is not just about us “dying to self” or the things He wants to change in us.
-Our identity in Christ is also about the awesome things He wants to show us and give us. This isn’t restrictive, it’s empowering.
-In verse 3 it says that “your life is hidden with Christ.” What could that possibly mean?! You are all clearly sitting here and not hiding. Actually, the Amplified version explains that it is this new, real, spiritual life. Our life is hidden with Christ and we are protected.
-When people don’t like us, for whatever reason, as long as its not something we to ask Jesus to change, there is a moment when we get to choose how their not liking us affects us.
-When we have our identity in Christ, we can have confidence about ourselves.
Saturday, November 15th
Who Am I…in the Church?
-What defines you in the church? Are you just a kid? Are you defined by who your parents are? Or is there something else that identifies you?
-Jesus intends for you to be more than just the child of your parents.
-He created you to be a specific part of His church.
-When He thought up your identity He had a picture of the invaluable role you will play in His church.
-No matter what Spiritual gifts we have or natural talents the Lord may use in service to the church we are called to encourage daily.
-Why is “encourager” an important part of your identity as a Christian?
-The Holy Spirit is the encourager. When we encourage one another we are doing it through the power of the Holy Spirit.
-This aspect of our identity is important in helping to build up one other Christians and encouraging them in their understanding of their identity in Christ.
-Who do you see has these gifts in our church?
-Part of your identity in the church is allowing the Holy Spirit to use natural aspects of your personality to build up His church.
-Exhortation is motivating and encouraging.
-Leading is vision and direction that is effective but not overbearing.
-Mercy is helping the sick, the poor, and the sorrowful.
1 Corinthians 12:4-11
-We’ve discussed this before, but verse 7 explains that each of us individually have an identity, a role, in the church that is directly from the Holy Spirit and those are listed in verses in 8-10.
-If your not moving in a supernatural gift from the Holy Spirit what does that mean?
-Just as we must first have our identity in Christ rather than the things we like or do, our identity in the church is about receiving all that Christ has for us.
-He wants to speak through you in prophecy, He wants to give you an extra amount of faith, He wants to use you to heal people and see miracles happen.
-Let’s not despise small beginnings; let’s encourage one another in these gifts.
1 Timothy 4:12
-What more is there to say?! God wants to use you in the church now. He has a role for you. You are more than just some kid in the youth group.
Saturday, November 15th
Who Am I…in the World?
-Why is Paul asking these questions?
-Is he saying that being a servant of Christ means that people won’t always like you?
-What does it look like to seek the approval of God over man?
-These are important questions that we should be asking ourselves constantly.
-I can have a bigger, better influence on this world if I am aiming to please God instead of the people around me.
-Sometimes teachers and prophets have things to say of which the world doesn’t approve.
-Why is it more important to please God than man?
-How can you be “salt” and “light” as Christians to this world?
-Our identity in this world can definitely be “Christian”, but it should also be distinctly Christian traits.
-Some times I feel like I don’t always let my light shine. Sometimes my focus is on myself instead of Jesus and I’m not allowing His love and goodness to be seen by other people through me.
-My identity in the world can’t just be “Christian” or “church-goer”, especially if I don’t ever act like it.
-My identity in this world is determined by Christ’s plan for my life.
-Look at verse 16, what good does it do for us to be salt and light?
-When the world, or the nonbelievers, around us see these signs Jesus says will follow us, what will be their response?
-What can we as Christians offer or do for the people around us who don’t know Jesus?
-This is Jesus speaking to His 11 disciples. We can still understand his to be for us, too.
-This is known as the Great Commission, it is undeniably a command to be a “little Christ”, a Christian; to this dying, sick, and broken world.
-I once heard a preacher say that we need to be Jesus with skin on.
Let’s set the scene. In Luke 24:1-12, Luke gives the account of the discovery of Jesus’ empty tomb and His resurrection.
- Who are these two people walking on the road to Emmaus?
- What things were they talking about with each other?
- Why does Jesus ask them to tell Him what they are discussing?
- Verse 21 shows that they have doubt even though they know about the promise of the 3rd day and received news of the empty tomb that morning. How would you help someone with doubt about who is Jesus?
Sometimes, as believers, it is not that we actually doubt that Jesus the Nazarene is the Son of God, like these disciples did. Sometimes, we doubt His character; we doubt who He is. We doubt that He is faithful to His Word or His promises or we question His commandments. Abraham is an excellent example of this struggle in faith, and he had the victory to overcome his doubt and receive God’s blessing and see God’s promises revealed.
Genesis 15:5,6; 17:15-19, 21; 22:1-13
Abraham was promised a son and through that son an entire lineage that would be blessed by God. At first, Abraham believed God and it says his belief put him in right standing with God. Then Abraham began to doubt as Sarah did not get pregnant, so God gave him a second promise to hold onto. God promised Abraham that Sarah would have a son in the next year. Then God asks Abraham to sacrifice the promised son, Isaac. Abraham responded with great faith to the initial promise of God in Genesis 15: when Isaac asks where the sacrifice is, Abraham responds that God would provide the sacrifice. Abraham trusted God that Isaac was the promised son and through him Abraham would be blessed with many descendants. This trust, Abraham’s faith, shows us that we must hold on to God’s promises even when things look like God has abandoned the situation. That’s how the disciples felt on the road to Emmaus. In reality, Christ’s death was necessary, just like Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice Isaac was necessary.
- In verses 25 & 26, Jesus rebukes them. He calls them foolish. What is He trying to accomplish by asking these questions?
- What do you think about the disciples’ response in verse 32 to having spent intimate time with Jesus but not recognizing Him?
- Why do you think He was revealed to them once He broke the bread, and why was it such an important part of their encounter that they tell this to The Eleven?
When they returned to Jerusalem, they confirmed to the remaining eleven Disciples that the empty tomb was evidence of Jesus’ resurrection. We need to do this for one another, too. When we see the truth of Scriptures confirmed, we need to talk to each other about it and encourage one another in our faith. This is true of seeing miracles and the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. It says that they went out that same hour as having had dinner with Jesus, walked the seven miles back to Jerusalem, and exclaimed the faithfulness of Jesus to His Word. When we experience Jesus answering our prayers or the movement of His Holy Spirit in our lives, we should be so excited that we want to tell our friends about it. By telling other believers, we encourage them in their faith.
- Why is it important for us to tell our friends about what things God has done and is doing in our lives?
- It does something for their faith, but what can it do for our spiritual life to give testimony?