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DO YOU WANT THE GOOD NEWS OR THE BAD NEWS FIRST?: There was an interesting study done around this question. Usually there are two people involved in this question. The first person is the bearer of good news and the bad news. The second person is the hearer of the good news and the bad news. The bearer usually wants to start with the good news first because it makes them feel better to start there. The hearer usually wants to start with the bad news because then the good news will make them feel better after hearing the bad news. If you’re giving the news you want to start with the good, if you’re hearing the news you want to end with the good. So as we open our bibles this morning I want to ask, there’s good news and there’s bad news, which would you like to hear first? Well how about this? I’ll start with good news since I’m the bearer and it makes me feel good, then I’ll give bad news, and then I’ll end with good news since that’s what you want to hear. So let’s pray and we’ll see what Bad News and Good News God has for us today.


In this passage we see that Daniel is doing his daily bible study and comes across…[5]

  • GOOD NEWS: THE END OF EXILE IS NEAR, IT’S ALMOST TIME TO GO HOME: He is probably reading the writings of a man named Jeremiah who had began, warning the Jewish people that God was going to send them into exile if they didn’t realize they were sinning against God by not loving him and others and ask for forgiveness. God knew they wouldn’t repent but he also promised them that they would not be in exile forever or be completely destroyed. God told Jeremiah to say this [6-8][Jer. 11-12] If Daniel had been in his late teens when the exile started and was in his eighties now, that meant that the end of 70 years was getting close. Daniel would have been old enough before exile to remember what life was like back in Jerusalem. He remembered the temple and being able to worship God in the place and way he knew God had intended. He longed to be able to return home and now as he read God’s promises, he realized that it was almost time! That’s the good news, but then there’s the…[9]
  • BAD NEWS: EXILE HASN’T CHANGED THE HEARTS OF PEOPLE: Daniel looks at God’s people and says in verse [10-11][Dan. 9:13] During the exile instead of God’s people realizing that they had sinned and crying out to God and admitting that they were wrong, they had continued living the way that they had before exile. My dad had a saying that when you first hear it, it seems silly, obvious, and absurd. He’d look at a person and a situation and he’d say,[12]
    • “No matter where you go, there you are.” The wisdom behind that saying is that you can change from living in one place to living in another. You can change one set of relationships with another set of relationships. You can change from one job to another job. But if you end up hating the place you move to, if you end up with the same problems in relationships, if you end up struggling in each job you’re in, maybe it’s not the place, the relationships, or the job, maybe you’re bringing your problem with you. The problems are not the place, the people, or the situation. The problem is the sin inside the person in each of those places and situations. Simply being in another land has not changed the hearts of God’s people. Daniel uses a number of terms to describe the condition of their hearts. He confesses that their hearts are…[13]
      • FULL OF: SIN, WRONG, WICKEDNESS, REBELLION, TREACHERY, INIQUITY, TRANSGRESSION. Each of these words has a specific way of describing the deep brokenness inside of humanity that needs to be fixed. [14]SIN for example is failure or missing the mark. Like shooting an arrow and completely missing the target. We fail at loving God the way he deserves. We fail at loving other people the way they deserve. It is failing to live the human life the way it was made to be lived. Then there’s [15] That’s not a word we use every day. Stop there, transgressor. Transgression means to betray someone who trusts you and break the relationship. For example, in marriage when someone cheats on their spouse, that would be transgression. There was a deep relationship that has been betrayed and breaks the relationship. Daniel is using all of these words to describe what is wrong with our hearts. Daniel doesn’t just point at the sin of the people, he says…[16]
        • “WE” ALL “ARE” SINNERS: Daniel includes himself in this. It would have been easy for Daniel to look down on the Babylonians, on the Jewish people. He was a pretty good person in comparison to them. But we don’t compare ourselves to others, we look up at the perfection of God and his goodness and then we will see ourselves in comparison to him. And when we see the way that he has always been good, faithful, loving, kind, forgiving to us even after we have rebelled, broken his trust and his heart, hurt ourselves, others, and his creation, we will stop looking down on others and instead get down on our knees. DANIEL SHOWS US THAT WE MUST…[17]


The first step in following Jesus is always CONFESSION. Admitting how broken we are and our deep need for someone to fix what we cannot fix ourselves. The undeniable fact is that even those who have been following Jesus for a long time will never be in a place where they can look down on others. They will continually be aware of the need to confess each day. There is always a place that needs work in our hearts. One of my favorite quotes about confession is from a pastor in the 1400’s named Martin Luther. He says that “When our Lord and Master Jesus Christ said “Repent,” he intended that the entire life of believers should be of repentance. [18]

  • Confession is simply agreeing with God about the sin in your life. It’s saying Yes God, what you call sin, Is what I have done. Confession starts with specifically naming our sin to God in prayer. I’ve lied today, I’ve cheated, I’ve been angry enough to murder, I’ve lusted, I’ve gossiped, I’ve wanted pleasure, praise, and possessions more than you and have committed Idolatry. I’ve either made you a tool to be used or ignored you and taken your place. Don’t sidestep sin or minimize it. God I really messed up today. Be honest. God I’ve been bitter towards this person and unforgiving. The reason we’re told to confess is…[19]
    • CONFESSION IS NOT FOR GOD, IT IS FOR US: God isn’t sitting in heaven and when we confess to him we’ve sinned he’s like “wait…what? When did that happen? How did I miss that?” God sees everything and knows everything. Even the things we try to hide from others. No, confession is for us. It’s admitting that we need help! Confession is inviting God in to fix and heal what only he can fix and heal. So, Daniel confesses his own sin. But Daniel also does something that we call… [20]

INTERCESSION: Interceding is stepping in the middle and asking God to do something on behalf of someone else.Daniel is asking that God would forgive the rest of his people who are still unrepentant. He doesn’t want to see them destroyed. He doesn’t want them to completely miss the chance to be changed by what they’ve experienced. He wants them to fall back in love with their loving Father. He wants God to get glory by showing the nations that he forgives and restores even the people who least deserve it. I can’t help but think that Christianity would be so much more attractive and beautiful if…[21]

  • INSTEAD OF CONDEMNING OTHERS WE INTERCEDE FOR THEM. I wonder how many more people would fall in love with Jesus if they saw Christians praying for them. I wonder how many more Christians would become more like Jesus if through praying for the people who least deserve it, end up loving them like God does. Daniel admits the bad news about himself and others. He confesses and he intercedes. But he also clings to the…[22]


DANIEL USES MANY WORDS TO DESCRIBE WHAT HE KNOWS TO BE TRUE ABOUT GOD… He says that God is: great, awesome, keeps his covenant, steadfastly loving, merciful. However, there is one word that is used 4 different times. The word is RIGHTEOUS. This isn’t a word we hear very much unless like me you grew up in the 80’s & 90’s with surfers and ninja turtles saying “Righteous!” When we hear that word, we usually think moral or good, but it’s primarily a relationship word. It means: to perfectly do right by someone depending on the relationship with them. It changes depending on the relationship. For example, a…

  • RIGHTEOUS JUDGE wouldn’t look at someone who took a gun into an elementary school and killed 40 students and say, you were probably just having a bad day, pay $200 and make sure you don’t do it again. No, that would be unrighteous, it would leave evil to run rampant and continue to destroy lives. So, God is a righteous judge. Daniel admits that he and his people had rebelled, acted wickedly, had not loved him or each other well, for over 400 years. He confesses that God righteously let them experience judgement and reap the consequences of their sin. His judgement is meant to bring about repentance and restoration. But Daniel also appeals to God as a…
    • RIGHTEOUS FATHER: He is merciful and steadfastly loving and always keeps his promises. Grace and Mercy usually go together. Grace is giving us what we don’t deserve: we don’t deserve forgiveness, we don’t deserve his kindness, we don’t deserve to be blessed when we’ve been selfish. Mercy is not giving us what we deserve: not being destroyed, sheltering us from some of our consequences. And it says that God is acting as a loving Father and not allowing his people to get what they deserved. It also says that he is steadfastly loving and keeps his promises. I love my son with everything in me! I will always love my son no matter what. No matter what decisions he makes good or bad, my greatest desire is to see good done for him and in his life. We have a loving heavenly Father. Jesus told us to call God Abba, Dad! Because he is tender, protective, kind, patient, giving, and loving. We don’t confess to make him love us, we confess because he loves us, and we’ve hurt him. I love that God sends Daniel an angel to tell him.. [23][Dan. 9:23]
      • YOU ARE GREATLY LOVED! Daniel is given assurance of God’s Fatherly love. He is told I’ve heard your prayers and you are greatly loved. One of Jesus’ followers, a man named John, had a favorite phrase he used for the people of the church, Beloved! People greatly loved by God. Because of what Jesus has done for us on the cross we can know that when we confess, we are also forgiven, and that we are greatly loved so we confess and intercede for others. [24]


So, this morning if you’re exploring what Christianity is all about, I have bad news and good news!

  • BEGINNING STEP: Bad news, we’re all sinners, we’re all broken, we’ve all rebelled, we all deserve the righteous judge. The perfect sentence for sinning against an infinitely perfect God is death. But God sent someone to intercede for us, to step in the middle. Not just a good man like Daniel, but a perfect man, named Jesus. He allowed himself to be crucified in our place. As he is dying, he says father forgive them! And if we confess that we’ve sinned and ask God to forgive us he will. If we commit to following Jesus for the rest of our lives we are promised He’ll give us the Holy Spirit so he can begin fixing our hearts and helping us love what is good, right, and perfect. [Connection Card]
  • NEXT STEP: Now if you’ve been following Jesus for a while but you keep changing places, relationships, and jobs and the problems follow you it may be time for counseling. It is possible to be forgiven and one of God’s people but still struggle with the same things you did before you were saved. You keep ending up in Babylon in your relationships and circumstances and God wants to change what’s in your heart that got you there. God’s desire is to free his people from their captivity, but too many of us take Babylon with us in our minds and habits. We have a partnership with Living Hope Counseling that helps initially offset the cost of getting help. I’ve done it personally, and many of you have as well and it has helped tremendously. LET ME ALSO ENCOURAGE US ALL THAT…[25]
  • JESUS IS INTERCEDING FOR US RIGHT NOW: One of the great fears is that we confess and at some point, God says, nope, no more. You’ve sinned to much. I can’t forgive that one. We are promised in [26-27][Heb. 7:25] Right now, in Heaven Jesus is continually interceding for us. Its as if every time we sin and confess, Jesus looks at the Father and they nod knowingly at each other as if to say, “I’ve covered this one too!”. We are able to approach God as our Father with confidence because Jesus has forgiven us once and for all. Like a kid running up into their father’s lap, we are always welcome and never turned away.


This morning we going to do together what Daniel has done, we are going to confess our sins, we are going to spend some time in intercession praying for those who need to give their lives to Jesus, and we’re going to be reminded of the good news as we take communion that Christ has forgiven us and is interceding and continually forgiving us even now. So if you would, let’s say this confession together…



If you would like to listen to sermons from previous weeks or other sermon series, you may do that at



Thanks so much for being part of what God is doing at Cornerstone.

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We believe that significant life change best takes place in the context of intentional relationships. Groups are the places where real life and real issues are discussed. This is the environment to celebrate the successes and good times of life, as well as comfort one another in the tough and disappointing times. It’s a place to be encouraged, equipped, and challenged to grow in our relationships with Jesus Christ.

Nic Cook Home Group
This group meets in the home of Nic and Susan Cook. They meet on Wednesday nights @ 6:30 – 8:00 PM. There is childcare available. Home group discussions are based around the topics and scriptures that are discussed in the previous Sunday sermon.
Lori Minks Home Group

This group meets in the home of Shawn and Lori Minks. They meet on Monday nights @ 6:30 – 8:00 PM. There is childcare available. Home group discussions are based around the topics and scriptures that are discussed in the previous Sunday sermon.

Jeff Millsap Home Group

This group meets in the home of Jeff and Jennifer Millsap. They meet on Wednesday nights @ 6:30 – 8:00 PM. There is childcare available. Home group discussions are based around the topics and scriptures that are discussed in the previous Sunday sermon.

Jennifer Millsap Sunday Group

This group meets in the kitchen at Cornerstone. They meet on Sunday mornings @ 9:00 – 10:00 AM (during 1st service). There is childcare available. Home group discussions are based around the topics and scriptures that are discussed n the previous Sunday sermon.

Ed Gerken & Ken Allen Sunday Group

This group meets in the High School room at Cornerstone. They meet on Sunday mornings @ 10:30 – 11:30 AM (during 2st service). There is children’s programming available. Sunday group discussions are based around the topics and books of the bible of the teachers choosing.

Ed Gerken Men's Group

This group meets in the kitchen at Cornerstone. They meet on Monday evenings @ 7:00 – 8:30 PM There is no childcare provided. The Men’s group discussions are based around the topics and books of the bible of the teachers choosing.




NURSERY l SUNDAYS from 9-11:30 AM

On Sunday mornings from 9-11:30 AM, infants and toddlers are cared for in our nursery area. The children are being cared for during our adult worship and Sunday group gatherings.


On Sunday mornings our kids, Pre-K – 5TH grade, will enjoy age appropriate creative and interactive bible teaching, fun activities and crafts. It’s a great chance to make friends as they learn more about Jesus.


On Sunday mornings our kids, Pre-K – 5TH grade, will worship together by singing and dancing to songs with biblical truth. Each week, kids will participate in large and small group activities to discover who Jesus was and continue to build their faith.



Once a month during the school year, kid’s K – 5th grade will participate in a fun activity or service project. We encourage kids to participate with their parents in Showing Jesus to the community around us through serving him and his mission.



Children's Ministry Mobile Check-in

Every child that enters into our kid's ministry must be checked into our system. We have provided a volunteer to assist you in the check in process. If you forgot to check them in before service do not fear. Below is a link to check them in on your mobile device. 

Every week we have a video that summarizes our Sermon for our kids and our kids at heart. Check out our video with our family Pastor Joe as he has some wild and crazy adventures and lessons for us!

Story Bible Videos (Use the arrows to change video) (Pre-k > K-2 > 3-5)

Parent Cue App

Check out the video below to explain how to use it. Create an account its free and founded in God's Word!




On Sunday mornings, our Jr. High students gather to learn, and build friendships with each other during our Sunday groups. There also might be doughnuts involved.


Our Cornerstone Student Ministry meets on Sunday evenings for games, worship, shenanigans, teaching, small groups, food, and more shenanigans.

Jr. High students meet from 4:00-6:00pm.

High School students meet from 5:30-7:30pm.


Follow Cornerstone Student Ministry on social media for more updates!

CIY: Move July 24th through 26th

Register Here

CIY Move is a 3-day retreat for our High School students, where they get to learn about their faith and experience it in a real way. They experience amazing worship and speakers while signing up for workshops to develop knowledge and discipleship, all while growing in relationship to their peers who are walking in the same journey of developing their faith.

The cost for this retreat is $75.00 with a minimum deposit of $50.00. Registration deadline is JULY 10TH

COVID-19 Update: Where we are not going to Anderson, IN as we had planned in June, we are going to have our retreat, in a differently. As a way of keeping ourselves safe CIY organization has released all of their media as a digital content. We are going to be hosting the retreat at Cornerstone over the course of 3-days. We will be watching the sessions, having small group activites and conversations just like we are at CIY but we are going to stay local. 

Questions? Talk to  Joe Shepherd (

Additional Payment Form

Youtube Live Stream

During this time stay safe and at home. Just because we are at home does not mean we cannot still engage in community and in God's word with our students. Every Sunday night we will be live streaming our youth nights for your student to learn and engage with God's word as well as experience a community of their peers online.

Zoom Meet-ups

Throughout this time in-person meetings are well.....not happening so we still want to see your lovely face! Sign up for Zoom, its FREE! Students can meet up with small group leaders and student pastor to maintain relationships, hang out, play games and open the communication for discipleship!

Download Zoom