A Better Covenant

The tent (Tabernacle) in the wilderness was sacred.
The building (Temple) in Jerusalem was sacred.
But only the sanctuary (holy place) in heaven is made by God.

Hebrews 8:1-2

Covenant vs. Testament
Covenant= an agreement between two parties
Testament= will; the desires of a single party

The word used in this passage is the same as "last will and testament."
It is put into effect by the sacrificial death of Jesus.

The covenant of Moses was replaced because it was "inadequate" and "incomplete."

It revealed sin, but could not remove it.
It demanded obedience, but didn't provide power to be obedient.

The promises of the new covenant:
1. "I will put my laws in their hearts..." v. 10

Jeremiah 31:33

2. "I will be their God..." v. 10

3. "...they will know me..." v. 11

Jeremiah 31:34

4. "I will forgive their wickedness..." v. 12


Better Than Priesthood

Hebrews 4:15

Jesus is a special priest because of the incarnation.
He is 100% God and 100% human.

Jesus was tempted in every way that you have been.
Yet Jesus never succumbed to temptation and sinned.

Hebrews 5:2

Jesus was tempted in every way that you have been.
Yet Jesus never succumbed to temptation and sinned.

Hebrews 5:3-4

Jesus is better than the priesthood because he didn't have to make a sacrifice for his own sins. (Leviticus 16)

Jesus is better than the priesthood because he is the one who does the calling.

Jesus is better than the priesthood because he only had to make the sacrifice once.

Jesus is better than the priesthood because his sacrifice fulfilled the entire sacrificial system.

Jesus is better than the priesthood because he is in the line of Melchizedek, not Aaron.

Genesis 14:18

Aaron is the priest - Jesus is priest and king.


Finding Peace

He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose. Jim Elliot

God rested on the seventh day of creation.

Genesis 2:2

Exodus 20:11

Exodus 31:17

What is this rest? Does God need rest?
Surely God doesn't get tired.

Isaiah 40:28

Surely he doesn't stop working.

John 5:17

This rest can best be described as now, and not yet peace.
Now - Being filled with the refreshing presence of the Holy Spirit
Not Yet - Anticipating the fulfillment of God's peace in eternity

The Word of God: vv. Hebrews 4:12-13

Living and active
We must not limit God to our interpretation of him.
He is alive and involved in our world.

Soul and spirit.
The soul - The part of our inner life where our desires and will reside.
The spirit - this is where our spiritual life exists; our relationship with God.

The rest of God, his peace, is living in relationship with him that we may have peace in this life, and rest in the life that is to come.

Better Than Moses

Hebrews 3:1-6

  • Moses gave the law; Jesus fulfilled it.
  • Moses gave five books, Jesus preached five sermons.
  • Moses got the law on a mountain, Jesus interpreted the law on a mountain.

Jesus is better because he is the Apostle…

Apostle: A missionary; one who preaches to all nations; one sent by God with a message; the first missionary, church-planter in an area; a spiritual father, one who raises spiritual sons and daughters and exists to affirm them.

Jesus is better because he is the High Priest…

Moses gave the instructions on sacrifices. Jesus fulfilled them.

Jesus is better because he is the builder of the house…

Jesus is better because he is the Son…


v. 13- Encourage one another daily. 

    Worship regularly

    Build each other up


Better Than: The Father's Son

Author: Unknown, possibly Apollos or Barnabas. Probably not Paul.

Date: Around 70AD. Before the destruction of the Temple.

Audience: Jewish Christians.

Theme: Jesus is better than anything.

Characteristics: Hebrews shows that Christianity is superior to other faiths by quoting extensively from the Old Testament.

  1. God speaks to people through the prophets and through his Son. (1.1-2)
  2. Jesus is greater because:
    1. He is the heir of the Father (owner)
    2. He is the creator of all. (Colossians 1.16)
    3. He radiates God’s glory.
    4. He is an exact representation of the Faither.
    5. He sustains all things.
    6. He provides purification from sin.
    7. He is at the right hand of God.
  3. Jesus is better than the angels. (1.4)
  4. Jesus has been given a great name. (Philippians 2.10-11)

Old Testament Influence:

There are Old Testament quotations in every chapter of Hebrews. In chapter one there are seven.

Signs, Wonders and Miracles… (2.4)

Confirmation (v. 3) is a legal term. It implies that there is evidence.

  • Signs: An event or action that would point a person to ‘meaning’ or source.
  • Wonders: The effects of a miracle.
  • Miracles: Supernatural occurrences that originate with God.

Toward 20/20 Vision

20/20 vision is the ability to see clearly

2020 is also the year 19 months from now

We need to see clearly what God wants us to be in the future.

Our mission is to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

Mission comes from the same root word as "missile."
We should think of the church's mission the way the military thinks of its missiles.

1. Missiles require planning.

There are plans to build a missile/ mission.

Luke 10:3-9 NIV
3 Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves. 4 Do not take a purse or bag or sandals; and do not greet anyone on the road. 5 “When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’ 6 If someone who promotes peace is there, your peace will rest on them; if not, it will return to you. 7 Stay there, eating and drinking whatever they give you, for the worker deserves his wages. Do not move around from house to house. 8 “When you enter a town and are welcomed, eat what is offered to you. 9 Heal the sick who are there and tell them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’

There are plans for operating a missile/ mission.

Luke 10:17-20 NIV
17 The seventy-two returned with joy and said, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.” 18 He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. 19 I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. 20 However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”

2. Missiles require support.

A missile is supported by the military chain of command.
The mission is supported by the whole church.

3. A missile is powered.

Acts 1:8 NIV
8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

4. A missile has a specific target.

Luke 19:10 NKJV
10 for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”

"If you aim at nothing, you'll hit it every time." – Zig Ziglar

Likewise, if we aim at everyone we will be much less effective.

Our Faith

Our mission is to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

Disciple comes from the same word as discipline.
It is about your lifestyle.

Discipleship should not be equated with education, or information.

We need to think about discipleship in a new way.
We should turn traditional discipleship thinking upside down.

1. Belonging is the first step to discipleship.

Acts 4:23
On their release, Peter and John went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and the elders had said to them.

2. Believing is the second step to discipleship.

Romans 10:9
If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.

3. Behaving is the final step to discipleship.

Discipleship Pathway

We need to streamline the pathway/membership process

  • Membership class will be offered twice each year
  • Confirmation classes will be offered to teens in even numbered years

There will be baptisms as needed.

We will keep the current Discipleship Pathway classes:

  • Reading the Bible for Life
  • Contagious Christian 
  • Spiritual Gifts

We will offer them in different ways.
    They will be offered in Connect Groups
    We will also begin to offer them on Sunday mornings
       10:15 am at Lapel
       10:00 am at TLC

Our Future

On Mother's Day, it is appropriate to consider how we should prioritize children and young people.

Jesus prioritized time with young people

Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” 15 When he had placed his hands on them, he went on from there.

Jesus prioritized discipling young people.

Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.

JAM- 64 children
Trinity Preschool- 79
TLC Children's Place- 91
VBS, Soccer, Kids' Worship, ACE, ROCK

We should cultivate a reputation as the “Church for Children”

We need to coordinate our ministries with one another.

  • Trinity Preschool and the Children’s Place should each do a program/ presentation in worship once annually
  • On the 4th Sunday of each month we should not only have a Children’s Chat, but focus on children. This would include music, announcements, sermon, etc.
  • We should be more intentional about improving our follow up to children and families from Reach, JAM, VBS, etc.
  • There should be an annual “children’s day” on a Sunday morning 
  • Enhance the connection between the Children's Place, Trinity Preschool and the children's ministry of the church

We should have movement in our children's ministries.

  • There needs to be a focus in Trinity Preschool, the Children’s Place, children’s ministry and Reach Student Ministries on moving students and their families to worship experiences at Trinity.
  • There needs to a focus on moving young people from Preschool to Children’s Ministry to Reach Student Ministries.

We should upgrade our facilities.

  • We need to explore options for increasing capacity at the Children's Place.
  • We should develop a softball/ kickball field (s) at the TLC Campus.
  • There also needs to be a picnic pavilion at the TLC Campus.

Our Vision




1. Revisit and Refocus the mission of Trinity UMC.

Our mission statement:  To make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

Our Vision:  UNIFY as one in Christ to CLARIFY our purpose, our mission and our ministry, to MULTIPLY our effectiveness, fruitfulness, and ministry to others for God's glory.

Our Core Values:  Through God's amazing grace, Trinity UMC desires to be a growing, loving, faith-based community that focuses on Biblical Teaching, Relevant Worship, and Serving God through missions and outreach.

Emphasis on Spiritual Gifts
Ephesians 4.11

  • Apostle - pioneer, innovative
  • Prophet - spirituality
  • Evangelist - outreach
  • Shepherd (pastor) - community
  • Teacher - learning, discipleship

1 Peter 4.10-11
As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God. If anyone ministers, let him do it as with the ability which God supplies, that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belong the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.

  • Speaking
  • Ministering

Romans 12.6-8
Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith;  or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching;  he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.

  • Prophecy
  • Ministry
  • Teaching
  • Exhorting
  • Giving
  • Leadership
  • Mercy 

1 Corinthians 12.7-10
But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all:  for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.

  • Wisdom
  • Knowledge
  • Faith
  • Healings
  • Miracles
  • Prophecy
  • Discerning spirits
  • Tongues
  • Interpretation of tongues

2. All staff and leaders of the church will take the “five fold survey” (fivefoldsurvey.com) each year and use the results to position him/herself in ministry.

The Church Council sets the vision and oversees its implementation.                            
The church staff - paid and volunteer - lead and do ministry.

3. We should rebrand the church to reflect the changes which follow. Moving forward we would be called “Trinity Church”.

Trinity Church- Lapel Campus, a United Methodist Community
Trinity Church- TLC Campus, a United Methodist Community

The Resurrection

Luke 24:36-43


1. The resurrection is “faith- __________.”

It is impossible.
It is preposterous.

But they did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense. Luke 24.11

It is terrifying.

They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost. V. 37

2. The resurrection is “faith- ______________.”

It is verifiable.

Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have. V. 39

It is overwhelming.

And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, “Do you have anything here to eat?” v. 41

It is spiritually nourishing.

…and he took it and ate it in their presence. V. 43

What’re We Gonna Do About It?

Autopsy of a Deceased Church, Part 5

Haggai 1:1-15

First, we covered the problems:

1. Slow Erosion
2. The Past is the Hero
3. The Church Refused to look like the Community
4. The Budget Moved Inwardly
5. The Great Commission Becomes the Great Omission
6. The Preference-Driven Church
7. Pastoral Tenure Decreases
8. The Church Rarely Prayed Together
9. The Church Had No Clear Purpose
10. The Church Obsessed over the Facilities

Now we get to the solutions.

1. Pray

Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5.16-18

2. Evaluate (vv. 7-8)

3. Admit we have a problem

From inside the fish Jonah prayed to the Lord his God.  He said:
“In my distress I called to the Lord, and he answered me.” Jonah 2.1-2

4. Plan (cf. Nehemiah)

5. Be willing to change (maybe radically)

  • Abram becomes Abraham
  • Jacob becomes Israel
  • Moses goes from Prince to Shepherd to Deliverer
  • David goes from Shepherd to King
  • Saul becomes Paul

6. Begin to look outside

“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you always got.”

“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."