Resources for YOU ARE... a series on Christian Basics at Indian Trail Church


As we journey through the "You Are..." series to finish out 2016, we want to recommend a few resources that might serve you. These resources are an opportunity to go deeper with the concepts that we will be studying on Sunday mornings. So, whether it’s in Home Groups or around your kitchen table with the kids, our hope is that these would lead you to further grasp the Christ-centered convictions that we will discover from His Word each week.

For each sermon this Fall, we’ve connected a short verse or passage that we thought captured the essence of the message. These are listed in the You Are... Study Guide (available for free in the Indian Trail Church foyer each Sunday) and can be memorized as a family, Home Group, or individually.

We are suggesting one of two books for home groups to use as a resource over the course of the series:

Christian Beliefs
Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology book (weighing in at over 1000 pages!) has been the standard text book in seminary theology courses for about 25 years. It has been so widely used because it is clear, thorough and accessible. I have used this resource so many times over the years, it’s hard to count! That’s why I’m so excited to have this book making its way through our body this Fall. Christian Beliefs is a small book that takes the depth of Grudem’s Systematic Theology and crystallizes it for the average person. You will find that you are encouraged, taught and challenged while reading this book. Though all the sections of the book don’t line up to our sermons, many of them do and you will benefit by reading these short chapters. Underline, star and highlight… and bring those notes to your Home Group experience to share what God is teaching you!

Concise Theology
J.I. Packer is a towering figure in evangelicalism in the last 50 years. He is perhaps best known for his book Knowing God. But Concise Theology is an amazing resource that will serve you throughout our time this Fall. Just like with Grudem’s book, not every chapter lines up with the topics we will cover. But for the ones that do, you will be blessed by Packer’s insight. These chapters are only 2-3 pages each, and will only take you about 5 minutes to get through. But while they’re short, please don’t take that to mean they are light on doctrine. Packer brings a depth of thinking in bite-sized portions that will help you understand some of the most difficult doctrines in simple, Biblical language.

FAMILY BOOK (written for children, but great for adults, too)
The Ology
Marty Machowski’s work represents the best example of gospel-centered theology and teaching for kids of elementary age. Though he has written many books for kids (The Gospel Story Bible, Long Story Short and Old Story New devotionals), The Ology is by far my favorite. It has been called a systematic theology for kids. This resource most closely connects with our series this fall because its concepts cover many of the same bases that we will from the pulpit. This means that this book will be useful all the way through the series with your kids. Some weeks there will be only one or two chapters that connect. But other weeks will feature up to eight chapters for you and your kids to dive into.

The Ology is not a typical children’s resource. There is no watering down in this book. There is clarity and simplicity… but no watering down. In fact, I can assure you that as parents, you will benefit personally from this book. I have studied theology for a long time, and I was blown away at how well things were captured in this kids’ resource. With key verses, questions, and great illustrations it will lead you into some wonderful teaching and discussion week after week this Fall!

Each week there will be a recommended book that specifically applies to the topic we are studying. If you want to dig deeper on one of the topics they will be a great resource! These books will be featured on our website blog each Monday after that topic is preached, along with a short overview of the book and key quotes. We will also have a limited supply of the weekly recommended book in the foyer for a suggested donation of $10. Here are the books for each week:
     September 11 - Image
          The Grand Design (Owen Strachan & Kevin Peacock)
     September 25 - Marred
          Respectable Sins (Jerry Bridges)
     October 2 - Loved
          The Truth of the Cross (RC Sproul)
     October 9 - Justified
          Bookends of the Christian Faith (Jerry Bridges)
     October 16 - Turned
          Stop Asking Jesus Into Your Heart (JD Graear)
     October 23 - Identified
          Understanding Baptism/the Lord’s Supper (Bobby Jamieson)
     October 30 - Renewed
          The Hole in Our Holiness (Kevin DeYoung)
     November 6 - Guided
          Taking God at HIs Word (Kevin DeYoung)
     November 13 - Dependent
          Prayer (Tim Keller)
     November 20 - Empowered
          Jesus Continued (JD Graear)
     November 27 - Opposed
          Spiritual Warfare (Brian Borgman & Rob Ventura)
     December 4 - Responsible
          What is a Healthy Church Member (Thabiti Anyabwile)
          The Compelling Community (Mark Dever & Jamie Dunlop)
     December 11 - Hoping
          (no recommended book)
     December 18 - Disciple-Makers
          Evangelism (Mack Stiles)

The New City Catechism was developed a few years ago by Tim Keller and the folks at Redeemer Presbyterian church in New York. The catechism is based largely on the Heidelberg and Westminster catechisms or the 17th century. Those tools, like the New City Catechism, were an attempt to aid believers in learning sound theology through a series questions and answers.
The New City Catechism (NCC) is a web-based tool, but can also be downloaded from iTunes as an iPad app. It features 52 questions and answers that lead from creation to new creation, and from design in God’s image, to restoration in christlikeness. Each question has a 3-5 minute video from one of The Gospel Coalition’s council members teaching on that particular topic. There is also brief commentary, and a prayer with each question. In addition, there are simplified children’s answers that would be very useful with younger kids in the family.
For each week in our series, we've listed the corresponding question from the NCC. On the website, we’ve also provided links to the home page, and to the FAQ page which will be very helpful as you consider utilizing the NCC.