If you were given the opportunity to teach some young adults the teachings of Jesus in ten (or twelve) sessions, what topics would you cover?
As I see things, there are two kinds of approaches: one is to ask Jesus to address the pressing topics of our day. That is, find the major topics – sex, drugs, popularity, materialism, apathy, relations with parents, problems with friends, etc — and then see what Jesus says on those topics.
The other approach is to find major topics in Jesus’ own ministry and ask Jesus to talk to young adults about those topics. In other words, examine the Gospels and see what turns up as significant and central and crucial to all that Jesus said and did.
Often we sacrifice what Jesus was on about because we want to talk about what we are on about. But, why not let Jesus be Jesus? Let’s listen to what Jesus wants to talk about.
So I, along with Syler Thomas and Chris Folmsbee, chose the second approach in our book The Jesus Creed for Students: Loving God, Loving Others. So we began with the Sermon on the Mount, where Jesus’ major teachings are bundled together, and branched out, and we came to the following basic topics:
Here’s an idea I’d like to challenge you to think about.
Evangelism is often considered trying to persuade someone to make a decision for Christ. To make that happen, we do our best to convince that person they are a sinner, and then we show that Jesus is the one who can save people from sins. I don’t doubt we are sinners and that Jesus saves people from their sins. He’s my Savior. But… is that evangelism? Is that what Jesus did?
What if evangelism is telling people about Jesus? I promise you this: this book can tell young adults about Jesus. Here’s a place to start to teach young adults about Jesus.