Jesus in the Old Testament

Scripture Passage: Exodus 25:10-22

The Arc of the Covenant in the Old Testament is a type of Christ. A type is a symbol which represents something else. Both the arc and the items it contained point to Jesus and remind us of our need for Him. Below are some questions and some answers that will help you come to deeper understanding of how the Arc of the covenant is a type of Christ and how the things inside of it are fulfilled in Christ.

What does the mercy seat remind us of? The blood on it atoned for the sins of the people. The blood of Christ is what atones for our sins. It shows that we are in need of mercy and someone to pay for our sins, in order for us to gain access to God. Our own merit cannot get us there.

What do the commandments remind us of? The commandments remind us that we cannot keep the law, but that only Christ can perfectly keep the law. So, in Christ is all measure of righteousness. So, now by placing our faith in Him, He takes our sinfulness in exchange for His righteousness. Now when God looks at us He doesn’t see us as a sinful broken mess, but instead sees the righteousness of Christ.

What does the pot of manna remind us of? Manna was the food that God provided the Israelites while they were wandering in the desert. The manna reminds us that Jesus is the only one who will satisfy us. He is the bread of life. So, Jesus is the only one who will bring about true fulfillment in our lives.

What does Aaron’s rod represent? Aaron was the high priest. He would enter into the presence of God and was the mediator. God has ordained Jesus Christ to be the Savior and the mediator between God and man. The cross of Jesus Christ and His resurrection separate Jesus from every other world religion. Because Jesus is alive and still our mediator.

Prayer Time:

• Spend time thanking Jesus for being the atonement for our sins.

• Thank Jesus for giving us His righteousness for our sins.

• Ask God to remind us daily for our need for him and that true fulfillment only come through Christ.

• Thank God for sending Jesus to restore relationship with Him and to be our mediator.

Five Earthquakes in Scripture

Throughout scripture, God used earthquakes as a demonstration of His awesome power and to signal a major point in human history. He even tells us in Scripture that earthquakes will increase as we approach the return of Jesus. Of course, not all earthquakes are a message but God used major natural events to verify His power at critical moments in Scripture.

What message do we learn from earthquakes.

1. The Earthquake at the Introduction of the Law (read Exodus 19:17-18) indicates God’s power over mankind.

2. The Earthquake at the Crucifixion indicates God’s power over sin.

3. The Earthquake at the Resurrection indicates God’s power over death. This earthquake was an incredible celebration and affirmation of the obedience of Jesus. God was saying, “Amen” (read Matthew 28:2).

4. The Earthquake of the Retribution (read Rev. 6:12; 8:5; 11:13; 16:18) indicates God’s power over evil.

5. The Earthquake of the Restoration (read Zechariah 13:3-4) indicates God’s power over despair.

So where do you find yourself today. Is the footing under your life a little shaky? What earthquake are you facing? You can find sure footing and new beginnings in God.

As you reflect on earthquakes and whatever things are shaking up your own world, remember…

• God’s power is working in us. He has the power to change our lives (Romans 8:11).
• God’s power is working for us (Act 4:31).
• God’s power is working ahead of us and changes our future (Rev 21:1-4).

The Mystery of the Torn Veil


Every Christ follower can experience a breakthrough by making three discoveries about the veil.

  1. The Veil’s Purpose
  • Sin has a history of building barriers: The Garden of Eden, The Tabernacle, The Temple
  • The veil was a barrier between sinful man and the presence of the Holy God.
  1. The Veil’s Destruction
  • These barriers between us and God are not how God wanted things to be. He created us for relationship and intimacy and closeness.
  • God has a history of breaking barriers when all seems hopeless: the Red Sea, the Jordan River, Jericho
  • The veil was torn in two from top to bottom—the barrier that separates us from God has been removed by Him. You can’t tear the curtain by yourself.
  1. The Veil’s Invitation
  • As it says in Hebrews 10:20, Christ became the veil.
  • Jesus has restored us and our original design in creation—to be in the presence of God. Not by anything we have done, but by the power and provision of God.

Discussion Questions

  1. Why would we not commit ourselves to draw close to God, to live in hope, when Christ made every accommodation for us to do so?
  2. What is blocking your access to God? 

Through the veil of Jesus the old one is torn down and we have full access—don’t misunderstand it or waste it!

What Happened in the Darkness

Scripture Passage: Matthew 27:45-50

When Jesus was crucified, the world was shrouded in darkness for three hours. There are 4 clues to examine to better appreciate the darkness.

  1. The Words | Jesus spoke in Aramaic on the cross and called God “Eli” instead of his usual “Abba”. Abba means father and Eli means My God. This change in wording shows us the isolation Jesus went through on the cross as He took on all our sin. Sin always brings isolation.
  2. The Wine | Wine signifies joy in the Bible, but sour wine is a cheap substitute. Jesus was given sour wine to drink on the cross during the darkness. Joy is long term. Sin brings momentary pleasure, but is a short cut to finding joy and doesn’t last.
  3. The Branch | The wine was given on a hyssop branch.  The branch reveals that sin separates but grace restores.
  4. The Cross | Jesus came as the light of the world. The darkness at the crucifixion was a symbol of God’s judgement of sin.

But the dark didn’t last. In John 1:4-5 we are told, “In him was life, and that life was the light of men. That light shines in the darkness, and yet the darkness did not overcome it.”

Discussion Questions:

• What would our lives be like without the light of Jesus?

• Are there any areas of darkness in your life? Pray for God to overcome the darkness.

He is Risen!

Scripture Passages: Mark 11,14,16

According to the Gospel of Mark, there were four different responses to Jesus by the people in Jerusalem. What is crazy is that we still make some of the same responses to Jesus today. Read and reflect on the responses below.

1. Great tradition, see you next year. | Mark 14:1
Tradition is only as good as the passion behind it. The people missed that they were celebrating the Passover, for the coming Lamb of God that is Jesus.

2. I have already made up my mind. | Mark 14:61-63
I’ll listen to the story of Jesus, but I am not willing to receive any information because I have formed my opinion. Many Pharisees and other religious leaders would not receive from Jesus because they had already formed their opinion.

3. What’s in it for me? | Mark 11:8-10
The people thought that Jesus was going to be a conquering ruler, not a suffering servant. Since He wasn’t what they expected they weren’t satisfied.

4. Resurrection Response | Mark 16:1-7
Because of the resurrection, I believe that God has the power to save me and transform me.

Think and talk about it!

• Which one of these responses do you identify with the most? Why?

• What does the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ mean to you?

• How has the resurrection of Jesus Christ changed your life?

Three Crosses, Two Choices

Scripture Passage: Luke 23: 32-43

Pastor Ryan shared lessons to be learned from the two criminals that were crucified on either side of Jesus.

Lesson from the first criminal…

• Not everyone is saved (all roads do not lead to God).

• You can be very near Jesus and still be lost (being around the church does not save you).

• You can be convinced that Jesus lived and still be lost (salvation does not come by believing that Jesus lived and was a good guy).

• A man can wish to be saved and still be lost (salvation takes more than a mental wish).

Lesson from the second criminal…

• You can be saved in an instant.

• You don’t have to understand everything in order to be saved.

• You are not saved through ritual.

• You are not saved by works (Romans 10:9 states: “…if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved”)

• A saved person enters heaven at the moment of death.

It’s interesting that both criminals experienced the same in the presence of Jesus, and heard what Jesus said. Yet, one “railed as him” (blasphemed him), and the other responded to him in faith.

Reflection and Discussion

Certainly the cross leads to salvation, but it also leads to hearing and being obedient to Christ’s call on our daily lives. Reflect on how you have responded to Jesus.

Around your table today, share your thoughts on the significance of remembering the cross. How do you hear and respond?

He Is Risen | Easter 2016

EasterScripture Passage: 1 Peter 1:3-5

He is alive! He is risen! The tomb is empty! This is the great hope for all mankind. That Jesus Christ died and rose again three days later.

1 Peter 1:3-5
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, 5 who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

Pastor Ryan illustrated 2 key truths in this passage.

1. Jesus is who He says He is.

2. I am not who I used to be.

At the close of the message today Pastor Ryan pointed out there are 4 types of people:

1. Those who are saved who know they are saved.
2. Those who are saved who worry that they are lost.
3. Those who are lost who think they are saved.
4. Those who are lost who know that they are lost.

Spend time as a family honestly answering where you are with the Jesus. He offers us a living hope because He has come back from the dead and proven who He really is – the Son of God and the Savior of the world.

Plan to join us next week as we begin Restore The Table — an exciting new series that will challenge and equip us to restore the family table as a place for spiritual conversations, for passing along our values, and for helping our children to embrace a biblical worldview.