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Understanding Our Faith Through The Lens Of The Gospel

Understanding Our Faith Through The Lens Of The Gospel

We've all seen it. We've all watched as certain teenagers lapse into a Christ-less faith. What do I mean by that? A Christ-less faith is one where Jesus' sacrifice on the cross is, in essence, nullified. This happens when teenagers' identity as Christians becomes nothing more than a checklist of don'ts. Don't drink. Don't cuss. Don't watch R-rated movies. And so on. The opposite is true as well. Students can fall into the trap of defining their faith by a checklist of "do's." Wear Christian T-shirts. Pray before lunch. Have a Bible verse screen-saver on phone. Check!

Is anything wrong with any of these? Of course not. It's the motivation behind them that's the issue.

When our teenagers fail to see their faith and their lives through the lens of Jesus' atoning work on the cross, their faith devolves into a "me-powered," works-driven legalism, no different than the Pharisees' desire to be righteous through their actions. Our goal as youth workers is to help students understand that everything about who they are is impacted by Jesus' life, death, and resurrection. Their very identities are found in the Gospel message. We have to help them see this.

Which is why we believe so strongly in the elements Bible study curriculum, and are so excited that every day, more and more churches are using it. 

In case you don’t know, elements is our newest Bible study curriculum, and it’s unique in that it examines 25 core faith concepts in three-lesson snapshots. These 25 concepts are vital to your students’ understanding of their faith. But it’s the way the three-lesson snapshot is structured that makes such an impact. 

As I mentioned yesterday, you could take months to "plumb the depths" of the concepts covered in elements. But our goal was to find a way to teach the basics of these concepts in a punchy, powerful format that students could latch-on to. That’s where the structure of the three-lesson format comes in. Yesterday we talked about the "lens" we use in every Lesson 1 of an elements study, the lens of God's character. You can read more about that here.

Today, I want to briefly mention the second "lens" of every elements study, namely, how we look at the specific concept through the lens of the Gospel.

In the second lesson of every single elements study, we look at the specific concept in light of the Gospel. For example, in the three-lesson look at Worship, the second lesson helps students see that worship happens when we truly see Jesus for who He is and respond to this encounter with a right response. The lesson helps students see what this response looks like, practically speaking, and challenges them to both encounter and respond to Jesus for themselves. The same type of progression happens when we talk about The Church, or God's Mission, or Compassion or any other of the 25 element studies. 

It’s a powerful and simple way of helping your students view their life and their faith through the person and work of Jesus Christ. 

Tomorrow we’ll look at the third “lense” of the three-lesson format of an elements study. In the meantime, if you want to try elements for yourself, you can download an entire study for FREE. This is an excellent way to see if elements will work for your group. 

try elements for free


get more info on elements

Curious about the 25 core faith concepts of elements? Here's a quick look at what's covered:


And, while you're here, take a second and watch this short video:

If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask! Call (888.969.6360), Live Chat us by clicking on the link at the top of this page, or email us at We'd love to answer any questions you may have.

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