After a year-long journey researching what teenagers really believe about Jesus, youth worker Jen Bradbury began to notice familiar gaps between common beliefs about Jesus and what the Bible actually tells us about him, culminating in her ground-breaking book, The Jesus Gap: What Teens Really Believe About Jesus. Now, in The Real Jesus, Bradbury addresses the questions head on in a book specifically written for youth themselves: Who is Jesus? Was he God? Was he human? What did he teach? What did he do? Did he sin? And why did he die?
These 50 devotional readings will bring the reality of Jesus to life for the teens in your life, helping them answer the same question he asked his friend, Peter: “Who do you say that I am?” The readings can be digested daily, studied by section, or powered through in just a few sittings. Each reading also contains quotes from real-life teenagers and questions to guide the reader into deeper personal reflection.
A Note to Youth Workers and Parents
A Note to Teens
Section 1: Will the Real JESUS Please Stand Up?
1: Who Is Jesus?
2: Jesus: More than Superman
3: Jesus: More than a Nice Guy
4: Jesus: More than a Spiritual Guru
5: Jesus: Better than a Bestie
6: King Jesus
Section 2: JESUS: God or Human?
7: Jesus: God’s Mini-Me
8: Half and Half
9: Jesus the Demigod?
10: Both / And
Section 3: Was JESUS Really Like Us?
11: Not Really a Silent Night
12: Dodging Bullets
13: The Homeless Man
15: Cry Baby
16: Call Me
Section 4: What Did JESUS Do?
17: Jesus Taught
18: Jesus Forgave
19: Jesus Performed Miracles
20: Jesus Rose from the Dead
Section 5: Did JESUS Teach…?
21: Did Jesus Teach Christianity?
22: Did Jesus Teach that Good Works Will Save You?
23: Did Jesus Teach Tolerance?
24: Did Jesus Teach that It’s Okay to Sin?
25: Did Jesus Teach that Happiness Is Our Ultimate Goal?
26: Did Jesus Teach Self-Help?
27: Did Jesus Teach that Success Means Never Failing?
Section 6: Did JESUS Sin?
28: Does It Really Matter Whether or Not Jesus Sinned?
29: Disobedient Jesus?
30: Ticked Off Jesus?
31: Rebel Jesus?
32: Do the Winners Write History?
Section 7: Why Did JESUS Die?
33: What Does It Mean that Jesus Died for Us?
34: An Unblemished Sheep
37: Life Is Hard but God Is There
Section 8: The Difference JESUS Makes
38: What a Ride!
39: I’m His!
40: The Outcasts
41: The Power of Touch
42: A Community of Doubters
44: Nap Time
45: Jesus Staring Back at Me
46: Jesus-Style Leadership
47: There’s Enough
48: What Do You Want to Be When You Grow Up?
49: Don’t Be Afraid
50: Don’t Give Up
About Jen Bradbury
Jen Bradbury serves as the director of youth ministry at Faith Lutheran Church in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. A veteran youth worker, Jen holds an MA in Youth Ministry Leadership from Huntington University. She’s the author of The Jesus Gap. Her writing has also appeared in YouthWorker Journal and The Christian Century, and she blogs regularly at ymjen.com. When not doing ministry, she and her husband, Doug, can be found hiking, backpacking, and traveling with their daughter, Hope.
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