Aug. 18 Gathering: “The Kingdom of Heaven Is Like…”


In Matthew Chapter 13, Jesus tells a series of parables about the kingdom of heaven. We know that’s what they’re about because they all start with “…the kingdom of heaven is like….”

The kingdom of heaven is like a man who planted seeds.

The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed.

The kingdom of heaven is like yeast.

A treasure.

A merchant.

A net.

So what is Jesus getting at? Who was he talking to and why? What does he even mean by “the kingdom of heaven?”

This week at New Wineskins we’ll continue our summer series on the parables of Jesus with a discussion of the “kingdom of heaven” parables in Matthew 13 and the implications for how they can inform the way we exist and behave in our world today.

Please plan to join us this Sunday, Aug. 18, in the 167 Side Room of the Marietta Brewing Company and bring your voice to the conversation!

Happy half-hour at 6:30pm, conversation starts at 7:00pm

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Aug. 4 Gathering: The Parable of the Wheat and the Weeds (with guest host Kevin Malcomb!)


In Matthew 13, Jesus tells a series of parables that have a unifying agricultural theme and start with “The Kingdom of Heaven is like….”

In the second parable in that series (Matt. 13:24-30), Jesus tells a story about the kingdom of heaven being like a farmer who planted good seeds in a field, but an enemy sowed weed among the good crop. The wheat and weeds grew together until the farmhands offered to clean out the bad stuff, but the farmer said to let both crops grow together until the harvest, when the harvester would sort the good from the bad. A little later (Matt 13:36-43) Jesus explains the parable to his disciples. And for ages since, we’ve interpreted the story as a tale of who gets to go to heaven and who gets sent to hell when they die.

But as with all parables, there is a deeper story behind the story. And this week, our own Kevin Malcomb will lead our discussion into the layers below the surface!

Join us this Sunday, Aug. 4, in the 167 Side Room of the Marietta Brewing Company as we continue our summer series on the parables of Jesus!

Happy half-hour at 6:30pm, conversation starts at 7:00pm

July 21 Gathering: The Parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector


In Luke 18, Jesus tells a story about a Pharisee and a tax collector who both come into the temple to pray. The self-righteous Pharisee thanks God for all his power and influence. The tax collector begs for mercy. And Jesus uses the story to spin the difference between privilege and humility.

On the surface, we usually read this parable in the light of our own individual virtues and shortcomings. Will we be proud, like the Pharisee, or will we be humble, like the tax collector?

But, as usual, Jesus is painting on a larger canvas. His teachings are far more rarely about individual morality than they are about society and culture. The whole rather than the one.

Join us this Sunday, July 21, in the 167 Side Room of the Marietta Brewing Company as we dig a little deeper into this familiar parable. We’ll listen to it through a couple of different translations and a contemporary paraphrase to see where Jesus may be saying something even more significant than we’ve come to expect.

Happy half-hour at 6:30pm, conversation starts at 7:00pm

April 28 Gathering: Resurrection


Resurrection. Returning from the dead.

It’s an idea that Christians from the beginning have hung their collective hats on. The idea that somehow, death doesn’t get the last word. That there is some kind of life after death.

And the proof is in Easter.

Historically not just a one-day candy-binging holiday but a 50-day liturgical season of celebration of new life, Easter is our yearly reminder of the miracle of Jesus overcoming death on the cross and being raised to life.

But what if it’s really not a miracle at all? What if resurrection was the most natural thing we could possibly believe in? What if it’s the most natural thing we could experience?

This Sunday at New Wineskins, we’ll talk about the idea of resurrection, both as a future hope and a present reality. And we’ll unpack how we can begin to view resurrection less from a standpoint of overcoming disbelief, but seeing the cosmos for what it really is.

Pleas plan to join us this Sunday, April 28, in the 167 Side Room of the Marietta Brewing Company for what we hope will be a fascinating conversation about resurrection and reality.

Happy Half-Hour: 6:30pm

Food service & Conversation Begins: 7:00pm

Oct. 21 Gathering: Miracles (do they matter?)


Jesus Toast

We love a good miracle story. Jesus feeding the 5,000. Healing the sick.Walking on water. Raising the dead. Giving sight to the blind. Or our personal favorite, turning water into wine.

Maybe it’s because we need to know miracles are real. We need to hope that the impossible can happen.

So why is it that so often in biblical post-miracle dialogues, Jesus tells people to keep it quiet? To not tell what they have seen or experienced?

It begs the question…do the miracles really matter?

This week at New Wineskins we’re going to talk about miracles, what they are (and aren’t!), and whether or not we view them the way Jesus intends them to be viewed. Come on out and be part of the conversation this Sunday, Oct. 21, in the 167 Side Room of the Marietta Brewing Company!

Happy Half-Hour: 6:30pm

Conversation Begins: 7:00pm

July 29 Gathering: “Burn Down the Mission”


food donations

“Burn down the mission Lord
If we’re gonna stay alive
It’s our only chance of living
Take all you need to live inside”

-Elton John, “Burn Down the Mission”
Tumbleweed Connection, 1970

Sir Elton John’s performance of songwriter Bernie Taupin’s brilliant lyrics notwithstanding, “mission” has always been at the heart of what it means to be a follower of Jesus.

But what exactly is “mission?” Is it something we do, or someone we are? Is it something we do across the world or across the street? Has Christian mission always been a positive influence in the world? Or is there a dark side, one we need to figuratively burn down, in order to recapture our call to the missio dei, God’s mission for God’s world?

This week at New Wineskins we’ll pick up where we left off in our last conversation about worship and how worship and mission can–or must–coexist.

Join us this Sunday, July 29, in the 167 Side Room of the Marietta Brewing Company to share your experiences with mission, whether local or international, and explore what a theology of mission looks like as we reimagine church.

Happy Half-Hour: 6:30pm

Conversation Begins: 7:00pm

June 17 Gathering: Salt & Light


Sea salt in sack

“You are the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its saltiness, how will it become salty again? It’s good for nothing except to be thrown away and trampled under people’s feet. You are the light of the world. A city on top of a hill can’t be hidden.Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a basket. Instead, they put it on top of a lampstand, and it shines on all who are in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before people, so they can see the good things you do and praise your Father who is in heaven.”

Matthew 5:13-16 (CEB)

Salt flavors and preserves.

Light illuminates so all may be seen clearly.

Right here in the opening verses of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus makes this statement about salt and light. About identity and vocation.

Jesus is telling his listeners what they were made to be and what they are called to do.

This Sunday at New Wineskins, we’ll talk about what it means to be salt and light in the context of identity and vocation. How exactly do we go about being salt and light in our world today? And what does our community look like when we do?

Join us this Sunday, June 17, in the 167 Side Room of the Marietta Brewing Company and join us in a conversation on one of Jesus’ most well-known (and maybe least fully understood) sayings…we hope to see you there!

Happy Half-Hour: 6:30pm

Conversation Begins: 7:00pm