Strange Things :: BIBLE STORIES

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 8/7/22 by Pastor Steve Shields.

When you see strange things in Bible stories, it is time to take notice. The people asked for a sign after the feeding of the 5,000. It is strange to ask for a sign after you’ve been given a sign.

It’s strange that a Rabbi would identify Himself as Life.

It’s strange for a human to tell others to eat His flesh and drink His blood.

It’s strange to remain with Jesus when He says such strange things.

Peter says we stay because Jesus fills our real needs. Deep in you spirit, you long for eternity. Deep in your heart, you long for God. Deep in your person, you long for belonging.

The Feeding of the 5,000 :: BIBLE STORIES

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 7/24/22 by Pastor Steve Shields.

There are 5 lessons we can learn from Jesus feeding the five thousand.

Be compassionate with others. Jesus had compassion on those who were listening to Him teach.

Engage with others. When we serve others we can serve with other Christians. Jesus could have spoke the food into the baskets. Instead, He used a little boys lunch to feed the 5,000.

Have confidence in God. The amount of food needed to feed that many people was enormous, but Jesus was confident that God would provide.

Be a good steward of what God’s given you. The disciples gathered up what was left over. It didn’t go to waste.

Keep the main thing the main thing. It is so easy to get distracted with other things and lose sight of the main thing.

The Calling of Matthew :: BIBLE STORIES

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 7/17/22 by Pastor Steve Shields.

The calling of Matthew was not just a blessing to him, but also to us.

By Jesus calling Matthew it brings relief to us as it takes away the burden of self-righteousness.

Jesus’ call to Matthew brings us peace as He speaks of completeness found in coming to Him.

Jesus’ call to Matthew brings us hope!

Jesus gives us the hope of forgiveness. Jesus gives us the hope of belonging. Jesus gives us the hope of growing.

Fishers Of Men :: BIBLE STORIES

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 6/19/22 by Pastor Steve Shields.

Listen to Pastor Steve as he discusses being fishers of men.

Why are we fishing for people?

People have lost their way. People are heading toward destruction. Jesus is calling us to help others discover the gift He offers.

Jesus is calling us to be fishers of men!

So, how do we fish for men?

We fish intentionally. We fish intelligently. We fish cooperatively.

Jesus Rejected At Nazareth :: BIBLE STORIES

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 6/12/22 by Pastor Steve Shields.

There are two types of contempt, blatant and subtle.

Subtle contempt can be non-engagement, casual engagement or distracted engagement.

The problem with contempt is it prevents you from honoring God. It prevents you from receiving blessing and it increases pain in life.

The keys to avoiding contempt are to keep your perspective of God fresh. Get to know God more deeply. Practice saying yes to God.

Choose to avoid the subtle contempt that may creep into your spiritual life.

The Royal Official’s Son :: BIBLE STORIES

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 6/5/22 by Pastor Steve Shields.

Why would Jesus make this point in John 4:48 “Unless you people see signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.”?

None of them are coming to Him, and it is an “outsider” who comes to Jesus. Jesus wants us to bring Him our needs. Because when we bring Him our needs, we bring our hearts.

Pastor Steve discusses a Biblical understanding of belief. Belief is not something I manufacture. It is not something I psych up in myself. It is not a leap of faith. It is not just nodding my head.

Instead, Biblical belief is a choice to trust Jesus!

Jesus invites you to trust Him. He invites you because He wants your heart. He invites you because it is the only way to really live.

You respond to His invitation by genuinely desiring His help, and genuinely desiring HIM!

The Woman At The Well :: BIBLE STORIES

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 5/29/22 by Pastor Steve Shields.

When I am without Jesus I may look like the Samaritan woman at the well. I may seem like a loner, someone to avoid, cynical, pragmatic, clueless, insignificant or worthless. My life may seem hopeless to others.

But just like the woman at the well, the answer to my problems is Jesus.

Jesus tells His followers that people are thirsty. We need to open our eyes to those around us who are thirsty.

Giving Water to the thirsty must be our priority. We must make giving Jesus to others a priority, which will mean tending to something besides our own agenda.

We need to examine our commitment of giving Water to the thirsty.

You Must Be Born Again :: BIBLE STORIES

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 5/22/22 by Pastor Steve Shields.

Nicodemus came to Jesus with a humble spirit. He was respectful towards Jesus, and sensed that Jesus had what he needed. He saw to the burial of Jesus.

Jesus spoke with Nicodemus about the Kingdom. Kingdom participation requires personal transformation. The Kingdom of God is organic or living. It is otherworldly. We enter the Kingdom by trusting God. The Kingdom is here if you want it.

Knowing this leads to questions we can ask ourselves. What is MY faith like? What do I need to do to be reborn? How do I maintain this new life? Listen to Pastor Steve as he guides us to the answers through Scripture.

Turning Water Into Wine :: BIBLE STORIES

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 5/15/22 by Pastor Steve Shields.

When we are going through the Bible stories we want to ask ourselves what is this here for or what is the point? Hermeneutics is the science of making sense of the Bible or understanding what it is saying. We do not want to have bad hermeneutics.

Knowing that, we can ask why did Jesus do this miracle? Or, why did John include this miracle? John states in John 21:25 that Jesus did many things, but not all are written down.

Jesus turning water into wine shows that Jesus is the God you can believe in. He is the God who enters your life. Just as he entered the lives of the wedding couple. It is about relationship.

Jesus is the God who responds to our needs as He responded to the need at the wedding.

Jesus is the God you can trust to do right. Jesus is the God who gives extravagantly.

You can trust Jesus because He is trustworthy. Trusting Him enhances all of life.

The Temptation Of Jesus :: BIBLE STORIES

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on 5/8/22 by Pastor Steve Shields.

Pastor Steve will walk us through the temptation of Jesus and show us how His response to temptation can help us resist temptation.

Temptation can be God ordained as was the case with Jesus. God does not tempt as it states in James 1:13. However, God does allow temptation, and He has not set us up for failure.

Temptation is not a sin. What you do with the temptation can be a sin or not.

Desires are not temptations. How you manage those temptations can be a sin or not.

Temptation is satisfying physical desires without regard for spiritual health. Temptation is also taking a shortcut that doesn’t really fulfill the call. Temptation is making a swap and cheating the system.

Jesus responds to temptation with relationship with the Father. He responds without compromise, and He responds with Scripture.

When temptation knocks at the door it falls into three categories. Lust of the flesh, which is a physical desire that are improperly prioritized. Lust of the eyes, which is a desire to have something that doesn’t belong to you. Pride of life, which is making the satisfaction of your desires your ultimate objective.

When faced with temptation, we need to respond as Jesus did. We need to walk closely with the Father. We need allow no compromise. We need to develop a working knowledge of the Scripture.