This is the perfect place to catch up on Pastor Jon’s previous messages, or to research more about what our message really is as a church. We also have provided you with the Scripture text, main point, and any sub-points for each message. We pray that the application of these messages are a profound blessing in your life, and please let us know if you have any questions.


Leaders Worth Following

Eighth in the series “Upstream”

2 Timothy 2:1-26


Main Point:  Paul gives us a model of how we should live to positively impact those who are downstream.

  1. A successful mission usually includes personal cost [1-7]
  2. The ultimate example clearly involved individual sacrifice [8-13]
    1. Matthew 10:32-33
  3. A confident ministry always implies gentle responses [14-26]
    1. Luke 9:61-62
    2. 1 Corinthians 15:12-14
  4. Applications and Next Steps:
    1. What are the things that have been entrusted to you in your spiritual journey that you have a duty to pass on to others?
    2. What could you do to improve the believability of your message to your friends?
    3. Are you ready today to actually find Jesus and begin following him?

Seventh in the series “Upstream”

2 Timothy 1:1-18

Main Point:  What we learn from those who are upstream from us are the things we need to share with those downstream.

  1. Good mentors remind us who we really are becoming [1-7]
    1. Romans 2:28-29
  2. Good teaching recognizes Jesus is always upstream [8-12]
    1. Mark 8:38
    2. Revelation 1:16-17
  3. Good examples reinforce Jesus’ design for our lives [13-18]

Application Questions and Next Steps:

  • Take an honest spiritual inventory of my actions and attitudes this week. (Scale of 1 to 10)
  • What can we do to increase the impact of this pattern of teaching in our lives?
  • How can we go about better impacting others downstream?

Sixth in the series “Upstream”

1 Timothy 6:1-21

Main Point:  There are things Christians should be chasing after, and things that are not worthy of our hearts.

  1. Net worth does not equal real value [2b-10]
  2. Whatever your status, discipleship matters [1-2a, 17-19]
    1. Galatians 3:27-29
    2. Matthew 6:19-21
  3. Some treasures are truly worth protecting [1-16, 20-21]

Application Questions:

  • Does your treatment of finances reflect contentment or greed?
  • How could you improve the way you steward his provision?
  • How could you apply Paul’s injunctions to those in servitude to your role as an employee, entrepreneur, or volunteer?

Fifth in the series “Upstream”

1 Timothy 5:1-25

Main Point:  God desires for us to live our lives well as part of a multi-generational community of faith.

  1. Real Christians treat one another as family [1-2]
    1. Mark 3:33-34
  2. Real Christians help those truly in need [3-15]
    1. Acts 6:1-4
    2. Matthew 15:4-6
    3. 1Corinthians 7: 8 – 9, 1 Corinthians 7:39 – 40
  3. Real Christians honor those further upstream [17-25]
    1. Deuteronomy 25:4
    2. Luke 10:7
  4. Applications and Next Steps
    1. How could you improve the way that you interact with those who are upstream from you in this church? Others?
    2. Who is someone that you could trust to share with them the areas of your life that you usually prefer to remain hidden?
    3. What practical improvements can we make to our ministry to better care for those who truly are in need?

Fourth in the series “Upstream”

1 Timothy 4:1-16

What should and should not be part of an influential leader’s life?

  1. Godliness
    1. Step Back
    2. Overwhelming Awe
    3. Proper Worship
    4. Respectful Attitude
    5. Complete Commitment
    6. Jesus-following Lifestyle
    7. Believing Jesus’s story
  2. False teaching always eventually produces ungodliness [1-5]
    1. Genesis 1:31
    2. Mark 7:18-23
  3. Faithful teaching always intentionally provides examples [6-16]
    1. 2 Peter 1:5-8
  4. Application Questions:
    1. Have you received the Gospel of Jesus, the root of the mystery of godliness?
    2. What kind of example are you giving younger Christians who are looking to you for clarity in how to live out aspects of the Way?
    3. What small changes could be made in your life that would make your model for other Christians more compelling?

Third in the series “Upstream”

1 Timothy 3:1-16

Main Point:  Paul gives a snapshot of the kind of leaders who have a positive influence on the church.

  1. Church leaders must be known as godly people [1-7]
    1. 1 Peter 5:1-4
  2. Church helpers must be known as godly people [8-13]
    1. Acts 6:3-4
  3. Real godliness must be based on the story of Jesus [14-16]
    1. Colossians 2:14-15
    2. 1 Peter 1:12
  4. Application Questions:
    1. Have you caught enough of a glimpse of the mystery of Jesus that it changes your life?
    2. What needs to change in your lifestyle and attitudes to better reflect the Christian ideals expressed here?
    3. How do we go about changing our behavior without embracing legalism?

Second in the series “Upstream”

1 Timothy 2:1-15

Main Point:  Our worship should be formulated in such a way that it has maximum impact on the world around us.

  1. Everyone needs to be included during our prayers [1-4]
  2. Everything needs to be focused on Jesus in our worship [5-7]
    1. Hebrews 8:6
    2. John 14:6
    3. Romans 5:6
    4. Mark 10:45
    5. Galatians 4:4-5
  3. Every distraction needs to be removed from our worship [8-15]
  4. Application Questions:
    1. What needs to change in your life for Jesus to truly be your focus?
    2. In what ways has God’s Word shaped your own perspectives on gender? How does your perspective need to further change?
    3. If we take the principles that Paul is teaching in this passage seriously, how would this impact the way we pray for our neighborhood, city, state, and country?

Rejecting Bad Examples

1 Timothy 1:20

Main Point:  Do not pattern your life after speculation, but instead follow the example of grace.

  1. Rules are designed as correction for those breaking them [3-11]
    1. Revelation 2:4-5
  2. Examples can be found for others in our story with God [1-2; 12-17]
    1. Luke 23:34
    2. Isaiah 60:1-3
  3. Errors are malignant for those who embrace them [18-20]
    1. Ephesians 6:10-18
  4. Application Questions:
    1. How can we better embed the pattern of the Gospel in our lives?
    2. What false teachings are popular among Christians in contemporary society?
    3. How do we effectively combat doctrinal lies?

God’s Plans And Us

Rev. Bryan Coble, Sow Chicago Community Church

Genesis 12:1-5
How are we supposed to be faithful to God’s purpose?
– we must take a first step of obedience; we have to listen to God
– we must see what is possible, not what is impossible
– when we step out in faith as a disciple, we should hear and obey

Genesis 12:10-20
What can happen when we lose our faith in God’s purpose?
– we can tend to cause problems that God didn’t give us
– we can tend to resort to non-Christlike ways to deal with our situation
Genesis 15:1-6
Genesis 16:1-4

Genesis 17:1-8; Genesis 15-21
How can we grow our faith after we forget to trust God?
– when we remember God’s purpose, He can begin to grow our faith
Genesis 18:1-15
– when we realize God’s plans are impossible without Him, our faith can grow

Genesis 22:1-14
What can true faith in God’s plan accomplish?
– true faith means God will test us
– true faith means you cannot wait to see how God will work
– true faith means we lose the anxiety over the results of God’s plans, and trust the outcome to Him

Luke 19:40-44

Main Point:  We are called to see our communities as Jesus sees them, and care for them with his overwhelming compassion.

  1. Jesus’ heart was broken for his region’s great city.
    1. 1 Peter 2:12
    2. Psalm 122:6-7
  2. Our hearts are broken for the great city of Chicago [Luke 13:34-35]
  3. Are your hearts broken over the condition of Lakeview [Luke 23:27-31]
    1. Acts 1:7-8

Application Questions:

  1. How do you go about having the change of heart that allows you to see your city (and others cities) as God sees them?
  2. What are some tangible ways you can become directly involved in bringing the Good News to Lakeview?