In whose story are we living?
Advance in Faith Level 1, consists of 8 units that are designed to help believers grow in an understanding of scripture and faith, and learn how Christian principles apply to modern day life.
We seek to understanding Jesus in his setting, with the terms he used to describe himself and his work.
Why did Jesus prefer to label himself "the son of man" -- a phrase that means human? What did he think humans should be doing, and how did he plan to do it differently than other humans?
We look at Jesus' teaching as found in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7). What was Jesus calling God's people to be and do? And how did Jesus himself embody his teaching?
Jesus' final journey to Jerusalem has huge significance. He rides into his capital to the adulation of the crowds, and overturns the temple. What was he doing?
Who is Holy Spirit? How do we encounter him? How his his presence with us different than it was in Old Testament times?
Jesus promised the Holy Spirit to his followers (John 14-16), and his first act after ascending the throne was to empower his followers with the Holy Spirit (Acts 1-2).
How do we life a life that produces what the Spirit intends (his fruit) instead of expressing our broken humanity (Galatians 5)? What does this life in the Spirit look like (Romans 8)?
What would it look like to use the gifts of the Spirit (as listed in 1 Corinthians 12) to care for each other?
Holy Spirit empowers us to partner with God in caring for people. His gifts include prophecy, distinguishing spirits, tongues, and interpretation.
God is a relational being (three in one). See how they treat each other, e.g. Father and Son, Son and Spirit. They're the best dance moves ever! Join the dance.
This unit discusses what it looks like on a day to day basis to live according to the Christian Faith
If our bodies belong to God, how do we look after them?
How should the believer handle money and material wealth? The Bible gives us many perspectives and principles.
Jesus taught the core relationship wisdom we need. Our family relationships and friendships are most significant when lived as God intended.
What does it look like to honour God with every part of your being, body, soul, and spirit?
How should we live for Christ in our consumer-orientated, instant-gratification, technologically-soaked society?
What are the spiritual disciplines, and how do they help us grow?
Bible study and prayer are the most foundational ways to grow spiritually. Learn how to do these things well.
What is fasting? What does the Bible say about it? Why fast? How does Christian meditation differ from meditation in other religions? How do we practice mediation?
How can living simply enrich our lives? How can refusing to dominate others enrich our sense of community?
This unit examines what questions and skills we need to bring to our reading of the Bible in order to understand the message of Scripture to the best of our ability.
Understanding inspiration. Suggesting a model for Bible Study (SOAP). Discussing principles of interpretation.
Practical examples of exegeting Scripture, from Mark 11.
How to handle different literary genres found in Scripture: poetry, apocalyptic, parables, proverbs, and narrative.
In what sense can narrative be authoritative? What storytelling conventions do we need to recognize in Hebrew narratives?
Covers principles for understanding eschatology, the Book of Revelation, and various genres. Examples include the genealogies in Matthew and Luke, slavery in Scripture, the role of women in Paul's letters, and war in the OT.
What is the good news, and how do we share it? You'll find this encouraging and liberating.
What was the good news according to Jesus? How should we understand the problem of sin, and how does the gospel resolve it?
To communicate the gospel to our culture, we need to know what the gospel is, how our culture works, and how to cross the divide between the two.
An interview on how we can be good news for people in Australia and overseas.
Learn how to share good news from the Master. Listen in on Jesus' conversations with Nicodemus (John 3) and the Samaritan woman (John 4).
How do you respond to some of the issues people raise that prevent them placing their trust in Jesus?
Advance in Faith Level 2 is an inspiring series of 16 units, rotating through every 4 years designed to take participants deeper in their understanding of scripture, theology and Church history.
How should we approach the Book of Revelation? We look at the book in its original setting, and consider the four ways it is commonly interpreted. The first vision introduces the main character of the book: Jesus (Revelation 1).
Having met our king (Rev 1), John receives messages from the ruler to seven outposts of his kingdom (Rev 2-3). His next vision is of our magnificent sovereign who has the throne and rules of heaven and earth (Rev 4).
God's edicts for earth are bound up, but God has the most astounding solution to restore his reign (Rev 5). The Lamb breaks all evils (Rev 6) and restores God's reign (Rev 7).
Those who acknowledge the Lamb celebrate his victory, while those who resisted him are removed (Rev 19-20). God's government sets everything right; everything he intended in the beginning is fulfilled in the end (Rev 21-22).
Why bother with the Old Testament? How to do we understand its story? Genesis: God plants his kingdom.
Exodus: God’s representative kingdom. Leviticus: God’s holy kingdom. Numbers: God’s wayward kingdom. Deuteronomy: God’s on-going kingdom.
Joshua: taking and dividing the land. Judges: theocracy proves impractical. 1 Samuel: Saul’s kingship. 2 Samuel: David’s kingship. 1 Kings 1–11: Solomon’s kingship.
The kingdom splits into Israel and Judah. Assyria destroys Israel, leaving only Judah. Then Judah is crushed by Babylon. Is this the end of God's kingdom?
Is there a kingdom of God after Israel has been destroyed? Covering Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Daniel, Ezra, Nehemiah, and Esther.
Putting the entire OT together as a single story with an amazing plot. Includes Ruth, Chronicles, Job - Song of Songs, and the Minor Prophets.
A 6 week study of the Gospel of Mark.
Jesus begins his teaching through parables. What could they really mean?
Jesus continues his ministry of healing
What of the Gentiles?
The turning point in Mark's gospel.
The destruction of the Temple and of the Messiah
The church in the first three centuries.
The church in eastern and western Europe, and in Britain.
Jerome and Scholarship, Augustine, Monasticism.
Pope Innocent III. Magna Carta. Decline of Papal Power. Results of the Crusades. John Wycliff and John Hus.
Plato and Aristotle. Hebrew thought. Augustine. Aquinas.
Ethics (often called moral philosophy) is the study of human morality and the application of that morality to contemporary life. Its concern is not only with what is right (morality) but also with doing what is right (moral application).
Paul's letter to the Galatians is perhapes the beginning of his written thought about the Christian faith. Here he deals with what the gospel really is and how we should live in light of it.
What is apologetics? Why do we need it? How does it relate to evangelism? How does faith relate to reason? What elements matter in apologetics?
How does the Christian faith answer questions about origins, meaning, ethics, and destiny? What other views do we encounter?
How can there be a God when there is so much evil/suffering in the world? It's a question we have to face. How do you respond?
How reliable is the Bible? Has it been transmitted faithfully over the centuries? Were the right documents included?
How is the New Testament put together? Who were the people who wrote these books, and what was their background? What are "Gospels"? Why are the first three similar? Who wrote the Gospel of John, and what message was he conveying?
An Introduction to Worldviews, including story, questions, symbols, and praxis
How do Australia's stories shape our worldview?
Contrasts the perspectives of Christian theism versus naturalism
Worldview questions such as: How do we understand the world around us? What is a human being? Why do we think the way we do?
We survey the rise of modernity, and the change from modernity to post modernity. Roman and Jewish worldviews of the first century were so different to ours.
What constituted the first century Jewish worldview? How was this expressed in their story, symbols, and praxis? How did they answer the worldview questions? Why does this matter to us?
What are we talking about when we use the word "cross"? This sessions surveys the New Testament to find out.
What does the cross achieve? Our discussion centres on what it means to be reconciled to God.
How does Jesus' life fit the description of 'According to Scripture'?
Jesus chose the Passover as the time of his death to renew God's saving of, not just Israel this time but the world, from slavery.
What did Jesus say about salvation? What was the gospel Paul preached? Is faith "allegiance"?
Continuation of what Paul's letters to Galatia and Thessalonia say about the resurrection (same notes as week 2).