The Mission: Growing with God among friends.
The Vision: Everyone with a friend, everyone with a place.
Food, Drinks, Music, God's Word, and Hangouts. It's what we do every Sunday night from 6pm-8pm.
All are welcome! Never been, but want to give it a try? Don't be nervous. We have new people every week.
Just show up, check in, and make yourself at home.
5:45pm Check-in and gathering
6:00pm: Food, drinks, chill
6:30pm: Music, Reading of the Word, Message
7:15pm: Ice Breakers, Discussion Groups
7:30pm - 8:00pm: Hangouts (Cafe, Lounge, Gym)
What's your jam. Basketball? Air Hockey? Foosball? Ping Pong? Dodgeball? Superfight? Apples to Apples? Go Fish? Uno? Nertz? Quiet discussion?
We can just about guarantee there's something here for you. Ridge Students is a community outreach program designed to bring people together. We'll see you soon!
Mission Briefing - 3/6/22
Another great night in the books!
We’re settling into our new format of “one group.” I’d like to extend a HUGE THANK YOU to all who have stepped up to provide the necessary oversight to help make this a reality. Our vision for Sunday nights is “Growing with God among friends.” Our goal is for everyone who attends to feel like they have a friend, and to feel like they have a place. Based on what I’ve seen the past two weeks, we’re well on the way to making this a reality.
Our study this week was Genesis 1. In our usual custom we read the entire chapter aloud and then attempted to draw some conclusions. Here’s the quick summary:
Genesis is very different from other accounts of the formation of the world. Some of the main differences are:
One Creator vs many.
God created (something from nothing) rather than made (something from something).
Everything has a beginning, except God.
God was not born.
God is separate from nature.
One early step in a journey of faith is acknowledging that the world was created by God. It's helpful to understand that this concept is in fact, one of the most plausible explanations for the existence of the universe. This means adopting a framework in which science and religion work together in providing evidence for the theory.
The commonly accepted scientific explanation of how Earth was formed is in lock step with the creation account in Genesis 1. This is astonishing - that modern science has confirmed the divinely revealed order of creation written over 3,000 years ago in an ancient Hebrew manuscript. It’s even more astonishing given the fact that the Genesis account stands in stark contrast to most other historic manuscripts.
I gave an example of a safe-cracker who spends hours or days using all the available modern tools of rational thought, mathematical algorithms, and tools to discern the combination and open the safe. The safe-cracker writes down the combination they’ve discovered, then closes the safe and scrambles the lock. A child comes along and scribbles something on a piece of paper, hands it to the safe-cracker and opens the safe. The combinations match. Assuming the child wasn’t the one who in fact made the safe, the most plausible explanation would be… someone gave the child the combination, right? What other rational explanation could possibly make sense?
The atheist might tell you that the Genesis account was a lucky guess. Figuring the immensely small odds given the many variables, you might say belief in this “lucky guess” would truly be a leap of faith.
In this example we can see how modern science proves out ageless truths written in the Bible. I challenged the students to try to find more examples of this - where science proves the Bible correct. I cited an example from an article that revealed the benefits of daily meditation and mindfulness techniques, specifically focusing on gratitude. Jesus shows us how to pray and give thanks to God, and science confirms this is a very good practice. What examples can you think of? Put on your Bible lenses and go find your own example of how modern science proves a biblical truth.
Through exercises like this our students will develop a foundational ability to defend their faith not just on the grounds of belief, but on philosophical, scientific, logical, and practical grounds as well. That’s the mission.
Mission Support: Question To Help You Grow
When did you study this topic (the formation of the universe and Earth) in school and was it taught from the perspective of evolution or creation?
Share an example of something you've made. Something from something.
Do you think human beings have the ability to create something from nothing, like God?
What about painting or drawing, is this making or creating? What about music? What about writing or telling stories?
Many theologians say that the reason why God created the universe was because it was natural for him to do so. What are some things that you do naturally?
Do you think it should be fairly normal for people to be able to change their minds about something? Do you think changing your mind is a sign of weakness or a sign of strength?
Think about the messages you hear in the world. According to the world, do science and religion mostly agree or mostly disagree with each other?
Do you yourself think science and religion mostly agree or mostly disagree?
Math was discovered, not invented. Music was discovered, not invented. Writing was discovered, not invented. Are these statements things you've thought about before? If these statements are true, what would it tell you about God?
Let’s say you believe that the universe was created by God. You believe that God ordered the world. Science studies the way in which the world is ordered - the rules, laws, and theories that govern how the natural world works. Is it a stretch to say that the Scientific Method is a path to understand more about God?
See you next week as we further into some of the questions that keep us awake at night.