On the Table: A New Bible Study Answering Common Cultural Questions

Last year I led our church through On the Table, a teaching series that answered major questions Christians often receive. Some of the questions felt more theological such as “How can we trust the Bible?” and “Is Jesus the only way?” Some of the questions felt more cultural such as “What does God think about gender dysphoria?” and “Why does God care about sex?” But in reality, all the questions were theological, cultural, and personal. Our stated goal at the beginning of the teaching series was to put the questions “on the table” and to meet each question with both grace and truth because both Jesus and His Word are full of grace and truth. Jesus is not balanced between grace and truth; He is full of grace and truth.

God did a gracious work in people through the series. People confessed faith in Jesus. People embraced the Scripture as the authority for life. Many shared they are more confident articulating their convictions. Some who were socially identifying as transgender decided to view their body as a gift from God and identify with the gender God gave them. Some cohabiting couples got married.

Yes, some thought I was a bigot. And some left our church. But even the vast majority of those who disagreed with the conclusions appreciated the honesty, the clarity, and the graciousness by which we approached the questions people are asking. To not be clear on what we believe is not compassionate or kind. We must stand on the truth, but we must do so graciously. Francis Schaeffer reminds us, “Biblical orthodoxy without compassion is surely the ugliest thing in the world.”

We are doing another round of questions this year, another On the Table teaching series, but since the first round, hundreds of church leaders have already reached out for the teaching notes or with questions on how we approached the topics. The Rooted Network has even taken the teaching series and created a Bible Study. The study includes group discussion guides and video teaching from Ed Stetzer, Steve Bang Lee, and me—all who are part of our teaching team at Mariners and helped teach the series. You can get more information here.