Downtown Cornerstone Blog
Apr 12
2021

Spring Classes: Growing in your Knowledge, Love, and Trust of the Lord

Discipleship, News, Teaching

Downtown Cornerstone,

As disciples of Christ, we are called to grow in our knowledge, love, and trust of the Lord (Col. 1:9-13). But, this growth doesn’t happen automatically; it happens through exercising our faith and intentionally utilizing the means of grace. One of these means of grace is the regular opening and applying of God’s Word together (Ps. 119:130, Col. 3:16).

This spring, we’re offering a number of classes over two five-week sessions. Each class, grounded in God’s Word, is intended to help you grow in a specific aspect of your life as a follower of Christ.

Session 1 begins this Wednesday, April 14th at 6:30PM:

  • Are you new with us and looking to meet others, learn more about DCC from our elders, join a Cornerstone Community, be baptized, and/or become a member? Join our Foundations class. Register here…
  • Are you looking to learn more about the history of Jesus’ church and God’s work of redeeming his people over centuries and millennia? Join the Church History class (ten weeks). Register here…
  • Are you desiring to grow in your understanding of the Bible, properly interpreting it and practically applying it to your life? Join the How to Study the Bible class. Register here…

Session 2 will begin on Wednesday, May 19th, and offer another round of the Foundations class, along with two additional classes:

  • Are you wanting to grow as a disciple-maker and help others become more like Christ? Join the Making Disciples class. Register here…
  • Are you seeking to learn what Scripture says about parenting and raising children who will love, trust, and treasure Jesus? Join our Parenting class. Register here…
If you are new with DCC, we would encourage you to start with the Foundations class.

To read more about our midweek classes and FAQs, visit our webpage here. If you have any other questions, please email us at classes@downtowncornerstone.org.

Feb 8
2021

Stewarding Our Resources and Our Seasons of Life!

Discipleship, Teaching | by Pastor Craig Sturm

Downtown Cornerstone,

The Holy Spirit, through the inspired pen of James, reveals this grand truth: “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.” (James 1:17)

Our consistent challenge is to live and order our lives in such a way that honors God, the Great Giver, by being good stewards of the entirety of our lives—including our financial resources and our various seasons of life.

Starting this week, you have an opportunity to learn a biblical perspective on these two topics through two helpful classes:

  • Financial Stewardship: During this five-week class, we’ll examine what Scripture has to say about our finances, how we’re to use them, and the dangers to avoid. We’ll also cover practical topics such as budgeting, saving, getting out of debt, investing, and more! This class will be taught by Pastor David Parker and DCC members Bryan and Lisagrace Alsbury. Register here
  • Singleness: This five-week class will cover a basic theology of singleness, and tackle questions like "What is the gift of singleness that Scripture talks about?" and "How can I find contentment amidst singleness?" Singles are encouraged to join in but this class would also benefit anyone who lives in community with singles. This class will be taught by Kyle Stewart, DCC staff member and deacon. Register here

Both these classes begin this Wednesday, February 10th at 6:30PM. To ensure availability, and to help us better prepare for the start of class on Wednesday, we ask that you register by Tuesday, February 9th.

Let me strongly encourage to take advantage of whichever of these you deem would be most helpful for you in your life right now. I truly believe that the investment of your time will yield the fruit of spiritual growth in your life.

Lastly, if you are new with DCC, I would encourage you to start with the Foundations Class which takes place at the same time. If you have any questions, email us at classes@downtowncornerstone.org.

For the increase of your joy in Jesus, and the more clear magnification of God’s glory in your life,

Pastor Craig

Jan 22
2021

Continuing the Conversation: A Forum on Racial Harmony this Sunday

Event, Racial Reconciliation, Teaching | by Pastor Justin Keogh

Downtown Cornerstone,

Conversations on topics of race, justice, and racial reconciliation can be challenging, even within the church. It can be hard to know where to start, hard to approach sensitive topics that are politically charged, and hard to love those whom we disagree with. Yet, such conversations are an essential step in growing in our ability to bear one another's burdens (Gal. 6:2) and building one another up in love (1 Thes. 5:11), and especially so, as we are an increasingly diverse people in an increasingly diverse city.

Over the last few years, we've had many opportunities to engage topics of racial injustice and racial reconciliation, including pastoral notes, forums, writings, sermon illustrations, and book studies. We want to continue creating space for us as a people to think biblically about these topics—understanding the sins of racism (Jas. 2:8-9), understanding the equality and value of all humans as God's image-bearers (Gen. 1:27), and understanding God's heart for the marginalized (Isa. 58:6-11). We want to grow in our ability to speak the truth in love with each other (Eph. 4:15-16) and seek to demonstrate love toward one another as brothers and sisters in Christ (Jn. 13:34-35).

A Forum on Racial Harmony | This Sunday at 1PM

This Sunday, as part of our New Year Essentials sermon series, Pastor Adam will be preaching on 1 John 4:13-21, highlighting the need for God's love to shape our racial reconciliation. That afternoon at 1pm, we're going to host a Forum on Racial Harmony, as an opportunity to continue the conversation with one another, anchored in the text and sermon that morning. This forum will be a combination of small group discussions and larger Q&A with some of our elders. Whether you've been engaging in this conversation for decades or you're just getting started, I'd highly encourage you to join us on Sunday.

REGISTER HERE

Additional Opportunities to Engage With Us

#1 Book Study
Following the forum, in February, we will be starting a new book study discussing Dr. George Yancey’s book Beyond Racial Gridlock. This book has been helpful to many in our body as we seek to understand each other’s perspectives on racial issues and work together to create a distinctly Christian approach. If you’re interested in joining this study, please fill out this brief form by Friday, 1/29.

#2 Church Center Group
We have a Racial Reconciliation group on Church Center to help us connect, share and discuss content, and ways to take action together. Join the conversation by signing up here.

#3 Racial Reconciliation Resources
We've also assembled a number of helpful resources on our Racial Reconciliation page. You can find past DCC sermons, pastoral notes, and blog posts on topics of race, as well as recommended books, podcasts, and articles from a variety of gospel-centered voices.

I am praying that our church would be built up through this event and our continuing dialogue as we listen, love, and act together. I hope you’ll join the conversation!

In Christ,
Pastor Justin

Sep 10
2020

Fall Classes begin next Wednesday!

Discipleship, News, Teaching | by Pastor Craig Sturm

Fall Classes

Downtown Cornerstone,

From skeptics to new believers to seasoned saints, the knowledge of God—through his Son and his revealed Word—is how we are reconciled to him and grow in relationship with him.

And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. – Jesus (John 17:3)

As Jesus’ people, an essential part of knowing God is to set aside dedicated time to learn together from Scripture, apply it to our lives, and savor God as we do that. After all, Spirit-filled savoring of God in this life is what equips us to savor him in the life to come.

To this end, we are continuing to offer midweek classes as a meaningful way for our body to grow together. The purpose of offering classes is not to create big heads, but big hearts.

Most classes will meet over five weeks and held virtually, where you will be live with the class teacher (DCC pastor, staff, or member). We have also prepared a brochure that lists all the classes we will be offering this year, organized into distinct tracks.

DOWNLOAD BROCHURE

Session 1 begins this Wednesday, September 16th at 6:30PM. To ensure availability, and to help us better prepare for the start of class on Wednesday, we ask that you register for Session 1 by Monday, September 14th. See below for class details and registration.

SESSION 1

DCC Foundations – This class is the next step for those seeking to learn more about DCC, join a community, serve, be baptized, and become a member. This five-week class serves as the primary relational on-ramp into life with our church and covers what we believe, why we belong, who we are, why we are here, and how we live together. ***This class is required for membership with DCC.***  Register here…

Exploring Christianity – Are you a skeptic who is exploring the claims of Christianity, or you a believer wanting to learn how you can better explain your faith to others? This five-week class will walk through the claims and life of Jesus and what it means to be a Christian. Register here…

How Jesus Changes Us – How does your faith in God impact your everyday thoughts, feelings, and actions? This five-week class will give you an opportunity to reflect on one specific area in your life and learn how God changes you to become more like Jesus. Register here…

New Testament I – The goal for this ten-week class is to help you understand the big picture of each book of the New Testament. You’ll gain a more clear picture of the continuity between the books in the New Testament, see the promises God has kept to his people from the Old Testament, and learn how he speaks to us through his Word today. Register here…

Unity & Diversity – This class covers the biblical foundation of our union with Christ and the need for unity and diversity within the local church, along many dimensions—race especially but not exclusively. We’ll also discuss ways to maintain the unity in Christ of an increasingly diverse body. Register here…

SESSION 2

(Begins Wednesday, October 21st @ 6:30PM)

Christians in the Workplace – How should our faith and the reality of who we are in light of the gospel change how we view our work? This five-week class will seek to create a biblical framework for how we approach work, and help you find new and fresh ways of integrating your faith in your work. Register here…

Developing Meaningful Relationships – Imagine being part of an interconnected group of people who entrust themselves to one another. The goal of this five-week class is to help us all consider how meaningful relationships can increasingly become a natural part of the daily life of our church. Register here…

Guidance – Have you ever considered what the Bible says about decision-making? In this five-week class, we’ll look at how we should approach practical decisions in light of God’s wisdom and His revealed will to us in and through the Bible—amidst all of the “counsel” that exists in our world today. Register here…

For more information and FAQs, visit our webpage. If you have any questions, please email us at classes@downtowncornerstone.org.

Blessings,
Pastor Craig

Jul 31
2020

Will you join me on August 16th?

Event, Teaching | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

Politics in the Life of the Church

Downtown Cornerstone,

By now you’ve heard that we are hosting a livestream event on Sunday, August 16th, Politics in the Life of the Church: A Workshop on Rethinking Faith and Politicsled by Jonathan Leeman, from 1:00-4:00pm. Jonathan is the editorial director for 9Marks (a ministry that serves to equip healthy churches), an elder of his church in D.C. (Cheverly Baptist), an author (How the Nations Rage and others), and a friend.

The idea for this event grew out of our January elder retreat during which we considered how to best shepherd DCC through the upcoming presidential election. Little did we know that 2020 would also include a global pandemic, record-level unemployment, renewed racial tensions, mandated face-masks, a scattering of the church over livestream, and a forced economic recession.

Any one of these issues is enough to create division. But, when taken together, we find ourselves amidst a uniquely contentious cultural moment. So, what does it look like to engage these issues from a biblically Christian perspective? How do we love fellow believers well, even while disagreeing with them? That’s what this event is all about.

The focus of this event is not on particular issues (e.g. race, immigration, policing, abortion, fiscal policy, partisanship, etc). Instead, the focus is on how we engage with these issues, and relate to one another amidst our differences, in a distinctive and compelling Christ-honoring manner. This event is for anyone (members, attenders, pastors or churches) who is interested in thinking about the relationship between faith and politics. We invite you to help us spread the word.

There will be three main sessions:

  1. How To Engage With Politics and Government as a Christian
  2. How to Love Church Members When We Disagree Politically
  3. And an entire session for Q&A

Due to COVID-19, the event will be livestreamed. We understand that, at this point, we are all over-loaded with virtual meetings, livestream, and video. Even more, this is happening on a summer afternoon in Seattle. However, the benefit of livestream is that we can extend the invitation to more people and you can participate while sitting outside with friends (socially distanced, with face masks, of course).

Click here to register.

We hope you‘re able to join us. Let’s pray for fruit!

Christ is all,
Pastor Adam

P.S. Jonathan will be also preaching that Sunday for DCC from Psalm 2 as part of our Walking With God series.

Jul 6
2020

Politics in the Life of the Church

Event, Teaching

Politics in the Life of the Church

We are living in an increasingly politically divided age in America. Today, there are deep, partisan differences on most issues that face our society—including the ongoing coronavirus pandemic response and current racial tensions. With the upcoming presidential election, these divisions only seem to be further intensifying.

As Christians, we know that our citizenship is in heaven (Phil. 3:20; Eph. 2:18; 1 Pet. 2:9). Jesus—through his life, death, and resurrection—has secured our glorification (1 Cor. 12:20; Phil. 3:21). We will enter into his righteous rule and reign, an everlasting kingdom to come (Is. 32:1; Dan. 7:1; Rev. 21:3-5).

While we wait for Jesus’ return, how do we, as Jesus’ people, view and relate to present rulers and authorities that God has placed us under? How do we go about seeking to uphold God’s perfect justice and righteousness in our imperfect and messy political environment? How do we guard against political divisions of the world from causing divisions in the church?

These are important questions for Christ-followers because there is a lot at stake here—including the spread of the gospel.

Jesus said that all people will know that we are his disciples, if we have love for one another (Jn. 13:34-35). In his most difficult hour, he prayed that we will become perfectly one (Jn. 17:23). The early church needed regular exhortation and practical teaching on how to love one another amidst differences—and so do we (1 Cor. 8, 13; Rom. 12, 14; Eph. 4; 1 Jn. 3).

Our main speaker, Jonathan Leeman, is the editorial director for 9Marks and the author of How the Nations Rage: Rethinking Faith and Politics in a Divided Age. Watch a short invitational video from Jonathan below.

 
Want to better understand the relationship between faith and politics? Are you desiring to engage politically in ways that reflect our common citizenship in heaven? Are you thinking about how to approach political conversations within the church?

We invite you to join us for an afternoon of careful thought, practical advice, and encouragement as we consider the unchanging political task of Jesus’ church: to become the salt and light he calls us to be, and offer the hope of his kingdom to the nations.

Date: Sunday, August 16th, 1–4 PM PDT
Location: Virtual
Registration: Free

Sessions will cover how to engage with politics and the government, and how to love church members when we disagree politically—followed by Q&A.

REGISTER NOW
Note: Due to Covid-19 gathering restrictions in Washington state, this event will be primarily livestreamed.

Mar 6
2020

Missions Conference: Taking the Gospel to the Nations

Event, Missions, Teaching

Taking the Gospel to the Nations

It is estimated that there are over 7,000 unreached people groups and 3 billion people in the world that have never heard the Gospel of Jesus Christ, have a Bible in their language, or have a church to gather with. We know, even in the midst of this reality, that God continues to use his saints to carry out his mission of saving his people across all tribes, nations, and tongues (Rev. 5:9, 7:9).

The light that dawned on us two thousand years ago is still reaching the ends of the earth (Is. 9:2, 49:6), and we get to participate in spreading this light! (1 Pet. 2:9)

Imagine a people who were once separated from Christ being brought near to him (Eph. 2:13), having the privilege of being called his own (Jn. 1:12), becoming part of a thriving local church (Acts 11:26; Col. 1:28), and spreading the fragrance of the knowledge of Christ to others (2 Cor. 2:14)! Many of us relate to this because we have been beneficiaries of the faithful, gospel-proclaiming work of others who came before us.

How can we be participating in carrying on this gospel legacy? While we are under God’s sovereign hands, he calls us to be diligent in our efforts to equipsend, and support those who are carrying out Jesus’ commission of making disciples of all nations (Mt. 28:20; Rom. 15:16). This requires careful thought and navigating practical realities even as we rely on God’s glory as the fuel for missions work (Is. 40:5).

One of our speakers, Mike Griffis, is an instructor at Radius International which is focused on equipping cross-cultural workers to establish healthy, indigenous churches among unreached people groups. Watch a short video below on how Radius is taking this task seriously.

 

Want to learn how you can better pray for and support missionaries we send out? Are you considering maybe one day going to the mission field yourself? Do you want to have your heart stirred afresh by the story that God is unfolding throughout the world?

We invite you to join us for a one-day Missions Conference sponsored by Acts 29 Northwest and hosted by Downtown Cornerstone Church.

Date: Saturday, March 21st, 9 am – 3 pm
Venue: DCC Building
Registration: $20 per person (scholarships available)

Throughout the day we’ll look at the biblical case for missions, the current state of missions, examples of missions done well, and practical next steps for our churches.

LEARN MORE

Note: We are still planning to gather unless the circumstances surrounding the spread of Covid-19 do not permit us to do so. In such cases, all registrations will be reimbursed.

Update (03/11/2020): Due to government restrictions related to Covid-19, we are postponing this event to a later date. Registration will reopen after a new date is determined. For more information, see related blog post.

May 29
2019

What are the First Things in Jesus’ Church?

Teaching | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

On Sunday, we began a new five-week series called First Things. If you have followed Jesus for any amount of time, you know that there are many things that go into the life of Jesus’ church. 

But, what are the first things

In this short series we are going to consider a number of foundational biblical principles for a healthy bible-teaching, Jesus-treasuring, people-loving, spirit-empowered, life-transforming local church. This study is built on the backbone of DCC’s new mission statement and ten core convictions. 

Therefore, this series will be a little different. We won’t be walking through a particular book of the Bible. Instead, each Sunday we will have a distinct anchoring passage, along with other supporting scripture, that teaches the truth in view that week. 

This is a fitting time for such a series in the life of our church. We are eight years old. Over the course of these years, the Lord has been exceedingly kind to us in what is one of the least churched and most secular cities in the country. In a word, DCC is a miracle. 

Yet, since the local church is a living thing, it is helpful to periodically pull back and consider, “Who are we? Why do we exist? Why does Jesus have us here?” That is what this series is all about—and the role we all play in Jesus’ unfolding story in our favorite city. 

We are in this together. 

Here is how First Things will take shape: 

Why We Exist (Col 1:15-23)
God-Centered, Jesus-Treasuring & Spirit-Empowered (Eph 1:3-14)
Bible-Saturated & Prayer-Filled (Ps. 119:18, 105)
Mission-Driven & Disciple-Making (Mt. 28:18-20)
People-Loving, City-Renewing & Church-Focused (Heb 10:19-25)

We hope you’ll join us. Let’s pray for fruit!

For Jesus’ Fame, 
Pastor Adam

Feb 13
2019

Our Search With The Preacher Begins Sunday

Teaching | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

This Sunday we begin a new series through the book of Ecclesiastes. It’s a timeless, and timely, book. In it, the Preacher-King, recounts a lifelong search for meaning, purpose, and satisfaction “under the sun.” His quest is an attempt to make sense out of life on a purely horizontal plane, without God in the picture. To do so, he exhausts every nook and cranny of the created order and human potential. Yet, again and again, he discovers “all is vanity.” Path after path leads to a dead end, so by the end there is only one way left.

This makes Ecclesiastes a unique book. It belongs with the wisdom literature of the Bible (i.e. Job, Psalms, Proverbs, and Song of Solomon) yet is also distinct from it. While the other books portray the fruit-filled wisdom of following God, Ecclesiastes portrays the fleeting nature of seeking life anywhere else. There are lessons here that are not found anywhere else in the Bible.

All of this, makes Ecclesiastes a gift from God. Through it, God invites us to step back and consider what we’re living for so we don’t waste our lives on vapor. Our lives are typically too full, busy, and noisy to think deeply about such things—so God gave us an entire book to slow us down. This is good news for those who are looking for more or for something better. But, the search takes courage. It confronts, convicts, and challenges. It forces us to consider the most important questions of life and, if we learn, discover afresh unsearchable riches of the ultimate Preacher-King.

Here is how our search will take shape over the next three months.

Ecc. 1:1-11 — All is Vanity
Ecc. 1:12-18; 2:12-17 — Knowledge
Ecc. 2:1-11 — Pleasure
Ecc. 2:18-26 — Work
Ecc. 3:1-22 — Time
Ecc. 4:1-16 — Evil
Ecc. 5:1-7 — Empty Religion
Ecc. 5:8-6:12 — Money
Ecc. 7:1-29 — Success & Suffering
Ecc. 8:1-17 — Fearing God
Ecc. 9:1-10 — Facing Death
Ecc. 9:11-10:20 — Advantages of Wisdom
Ecc. 11:1-12:14 — The End of the Matter

We hope you’ll join us. Let’s pray for fruit.

Christ is all, 
Pastor Adam

Feb 11
2019

Start the Year Taking Fresh Steps of Faith

Discipleship, Teaching | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

As most of you know, we concluded our 2019 New Year Essentials sermon series last week. This has become an annual set of sermons that address topics to which we must repeatedly return for God’s glory, our joy, and the good of others. Of course, this is not an annual repeat of the same sermons. Rather, they are different sermons that take different angles on subjects we need to come back to again-and-again. 

Here is how our series came together this year: 

Storing Up God’s Word

A Gospel-Forged People in a Divided Age

Rebooting Your Prayer Life

The Wonder of Jesus’ Local Church

My prayer for that series was for the Spirit of God to move each of us to take fresh steps of faith this year. Faith does not stay put for long. Faith moves (James 2:17). Faith is a living dynamic force, given and fueled by the Spirit, that changes our every day lives, in ways big and small, for the glory of God. 

That prayer is what led to my weekly challenges, to the entire church, throughout the series. Each challenge was a practical suggestion for how your faith in Christ might move you to take fresh steps in the area under consideration. Here are the four challenges I gave to the church: 

#1 Memorize one verse a week 

In a world filled with words, we won’t make it unless we’re being fed and fortified by the right words. We need unshakeable words of truth to give meaning, strength and hope to our lives. Those words are found in God’s Word. Of course, the amount of Scripture will vary from person to person. What matters is that you are stockpiling the riches of God’s Word in your heart. What’s your plan? 

#2 Do not mirror the divisions of the world, within the church, but heal them 

One of the purposes of the local church is to show the world the new kind of humanity God is forging in Jesus. Unfortunately, the local church can look just as divided as the world. What do we do? The healing we long for doesn’t occur automatically nor by blaming others. It occurs when each one of Jesus’ people decides, in faith, to be an agent of healing themselves. In this sermon, we considered ten attributes of a Gospel-forged people from Romans 12:9-21. What are two or three relational dynamics in that passage that Jesus is inviting you to grow in this year? 

#3 Refocus your prayer life

There is no other way to reboot your prayer life than to begin to pray afresh. To do that it is critical to not see prayer so much as a separate activity, or even means of grace (which it is), as much as a vital means of ongoing communion with God. In other words, if we’re not praying, we’re not communing. This week my challenge was twofold: (1) Read one book on prayer and (2) prioritize each of our church-wide prayer nights this year.

#4 Consider afresh the wonder of Jesus’ local church—and join in. 

Jesus’ local church is not one of the many options. It is God’s Plan A for spreading his glory through the salvation of his people among the neighborhoods of Seattle to the nations of the world. There is no such thing as a churchless or free agent Christian. That is largely a modern phenomenon. Though it is unfortunately common, it is irregular and unbiblical. This year, link arms with this local expression of Jesus’ people (or join another) if you’re not yet a member. If you are already a member, keep in mind that membership is a living commitment to a living people. In what ways might Jesus be inviting you to become more deeply committed to his people this year? 

Bearing Gospel fruit in our everyday lives

In all this, we must remember that none of these make us right with God, nor earn us more of his love. We have God’s love, in Christ, through faith. Full stop. That is not our doing, it is a gift of God (Eph 2:8). However, as the reality of God’s love sinks into our hearts, it bears grace-laden fruit, such as storing up God’s Word, healing divisions, renewed prayer, and a growing love for his church. Let’s ask God to use these massive gospel truths to bear lasting fruit in our lives this year. Who knows what He might do through us?

Christ is all,
Pastor Adam