Blog Posts by Travis McSherley

Take 5 Will Return on January 30

Pastor Mike will be back with a new Take 5 on Friday, January 30. In the meantime, look through our archive and catch up on any videos you might have missed. Or watch them again!

Take 5 is a series of videos for pastors & teachers of God’s Word. Mike Minter, teaching pastor and founder of Reston Bible Church, shares practical wisdom from over 40 years of ministry experience.

For more Take 5 videos, visit or subscribe via RSS here:

To suggest a topic for Pastor Mike to cover, send an email to

Sunday Rewind | 8.24.2014

Sunday Rewind


Sing, Sing, Sing (Psalm 47:6-8) – Hello Love by Chris Tomlin

Glorious (Psalm 111:2-3) – Glorious by Paul Baloche

Be Thou My Vision (2 Corinthians 3:17-18) – Cathedral by Heartsong

Give Me Faith (Psalm 73:25-26) – Nothing Is Wasted by Elevation Worship


TEACHING: Do Something, Part 2

Having a hard heart can keep us from listening to and applying God’s truth to our lives.




  1. What was one thing you found particularly interesting, insightful, helpful or difficult to understand from this sermon?
  2. Are many people willing to admit to being stubborn? Why or why not? How did you respond to the statement, “We all struggle with hard or stubborn areas of our hearts”?
  3. How does being stubborn or having a hard heart make it hard for us to really listen and apply God’s truth?
  4. Where are some areas where you think our society has a hard heart or a severed conscious against God’s Truth? Where do you see yourself following society’s lead?
  5. On Sunday, Aaron said, “The more we say no to God, the quieter his voice becomes.” Where have you see this truth in your own life?
  6. Are there any areas where you think you are currently struggling with a hard heart or severed conscious rejecting God’s truth? Some of the diagnostic questions from Sunday are: what are areas we get defensive about? Where do I have to justify myself a lot? Where am I making lots of excuses? What am I claiming as my rights?
  7. Read Malachi 4:6. What is God’s desire for our relationship with our family? How is this different than just all getting along and our kids behaving well. How have we been deceived into choosing something good over God’s best for our family.
  8. Read Matthew 23:37 (start earlier for some context). What is God’s heart towards the Pharisees and those who had hard hearts towards him? Why is this important to realize as we deal with our own hard hearts?
  9. Pray through Psalm 139:23-24, asking God to reveal the hardness in your own heart.

Sunday Rewind | 6.29.2014

Sunday Rewind


Glorious (Psalm 111:2-3) – Everything Glorious by Chris Tomlin (Passion)

Rock of Ages (Deuteronomy 32:3-4) – The Death of Death by Charlie Hall

Lord I Need You (Hebrews 4:16) – All The People Said Amen by Matt Maher

Christ Is Enough (2 Corinthians 12:9) – Glorious Ruins by Hillsong

Mighty To Save (Zephaniah 3:17) – Yahweh by Hillsong

Lord of All (Psalm 97:5-6) – Attention by Kristian Stanfill


TEACHING: Free to Worship

God has set us free to worship Him, but freedom requires sacrifice and a generous heart.




  1. How did this message change or enhance your understanding of worship?
  2. What does it mean to be “free to worship”? What Scripture comes to mind that displays this freedom?
  3. Do you keep a few idols in the “closet” of your heart? What are they? How do these idols or “impostors” hinder your worship of the true God?
  4. Read Isaiah 45:14-25. Do these verses inspire you to worship? How do they speak to God’s worth, and the worthlessness of idols?
  5. In 2 Samuel 24:24, David says, “I will not offer burnt offerings to the Lord my God that cost me nothing.” Why does our freedom to worship require sacrifice?
  6. How can you keep your possessions from possessing you, and thus drawing you away from worship? How can you encourage others to serve God rather than mammon?
  7. What are some practical ways you can stretch yourself in being generous to God?



Sunday Rewind | 9.1.2013

Sunday Rewind


Sing, Sing, Sing (Psalm 47:6-7) – Hello Love by Chris Tomlin

Blessed Be Your Name (Job 1:21) – Sacred Revolution by Matt Redman (Passion)

By Faith (Psalm 145:13) – Awaken the Dawn by Keith & Kristyn Getty

As It Is In Heaven (Psalm 149:1) – Overflow by Matt Maher

I Lift My Hands (Psalm 46:10) – And If Our God is For Us… by Chris Tomlin


TEACHING: Getting to Know Scripture, Part 1

After His resurrection, Jesus rebuked two of His disciples for disbelief and “interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.” (Luke 24:27). The Old Testament is full of prophecy, foreshadowing, and models that point to the Messiah who was to come, all of which should build our faith in Him and the Bible that speaks of Him.




  1. Did this message encourage your faith in the Scripture? How so?
  2. Pastor Mike mentioned the narratives of Noah and the ark (Genesis 6-8), Abraham and Isaac (Genesis 17,21-22), Joseph (Genesis 37,39-49), Jonah, the Passover (Exodus 12), and the tabernacle (Exodus 25-26). Take one or two of these and discuss some of the ways in which they foreshadow Christ. Are there any other models or types of Christ in the Old Testament that come to mind?
  3. Why do you think the disciples on the Road to Emmaus failed to recognize Jesus as He talked to them?
  4. Read Luke 24:13-25 and Acts 8:26-39. What seems to be the response when someone “gets to know” the Old Testament? Is your response the same?
  5. How would you answer someone (or how have you answered) who tells you that the Bible is just a bunch of stories written “around a campfire”?
  6. Are there areas where you feel your understanding of Scripture is lacking? Spend some time as a group talking about and praying over ways you can grow in those areas.

Sunday Rewind | 8.25.2013

Sunday Rewind


O Worship The King (Psalm 145:9-10) – Hymns Ancient & Modern by Chris Tomlin (Passion)

Open Up Our Eyes (Ephesians 1:18-19a) – Nothing is Wasted by Elevation Worship

Beautiful Lord (Ephesians 2:4-5) – The Sound of Melodies by Leeland

Mighty To Save (Zephaniah 3:17) – Yahweh by Hillsong Chapel

Son of God (Psalm 145:3-4) – Beauty in the Broken by Starfield


TEACHING: Ruth: A Story of God’s Redemptive Love, Part 7

As we conclude our series in the book of Ruth, Pastor Mike explains how the main theme of the story is redemption. Ruth and Naomi’s redemption through Boaz is a foreshadowing of the ultimate redemption by our kinsman-redeemer, Jesus Christ.




  1. How does Boaz’s redemption of Ruth and Naomi point to the redemption of God’s people through Christ? Can you think of other stories in the Old Testament that point to that redemption?
  2. Pastor Mike said the qualifications of a kinsman-redeemer are: 1) He is a relative. 2) He is able to redeem. 3) He is willing to redeem. 4) He is free from the problem of the one he is to redeem. Talk about the reasons that Christ is eligible to be our kinsman-redeemer.
  3. Read and discuss Galatians 3:10-29 and Romans 3:19-24. How do these passages explain the “problem” from which we need to be redeemed?
  4. Referring to the genealogy of Jesus, Pastor Mike said, “God redeems the mess. God even takes messes and uses them for His redemptive purposes.” Is this encouraging to you? Do you see any ways that God has used the “mess” in your own life, or those around you?
  5. What is one thing you’ve learned (or re-learned) from the study of Ruth that has encouraged you or challenged you in your Christian walk?
  6. Spend some time in prayer thanking God for providing us a kinsman-redeemer and Savior.

Sunday Rewind | 6.30.2013

Sunday Rewind


Sing, Sing, Sing (Psalm 47:6-7) – Hello Love by Chris Tomlin

Alive In Us (Ephesians 2:4-5) – God Is Able by Hillsong

Give Me Faith (Psalm 73:25-26) – Nothing Is Wasted by Elevation Worship

The Solid Rock (Psalm 18:2) – Original Arrangement

I Stand Amazed (2 Corinthians 8:9) – North Point Live by Candi Pearson Shelton (North Point)


TEACHING: Ruth: A Story of God’s Redemptive Love, Part 1

In Ruth Chapter 1, Naomi and her daughter-in-law Ruth suffer the tragedy of losing their husbands. But Naomi’s honest faith and Ruth’s unyielding loyalty pave the way for royal line of the Messiah.




  1. How can we become people whom others want to “follow” through life with such eager commitment as Ruth’s? Do you know any people like that?
  2. Read Ruth 1:11-13 and 20-21 and discuss Naomi’s reaction to her circumstances. What do her words reveal about her walk with Lord? Can you think of other examples in Scripture where people responded similarly? Do you ever express yourself to God like that?
  3. Have you ever had a season in life where you felt called to abandon all that you know to follow God’s plan? Did you go?
  4. Read Ruth 1:15-17. What does this section reveal about Ruth’s persistent faithfulness to Naomi?
  5. What are some ways you can already see in this section that God is using the lives of these two women to prepare the way for Christ’s arrival on earth?

Sunday Rewind | 6.23.2013

Sunday Rewind


Endless Light (Psalm 113:3-4) – Cornerstone by Hillsong

Open Up Our Eyes (Ephesians 1:18-19a) – Nothing Is Wasted by Elevation Worship

Be Lifted High (John 3:30) – Nothing Is Wasted by Elevation Worship

God, You Lifted Me Out (Psalm 30:1-2) – For The Honor by Elevation Worship

Glorious (Psalm 72:18-19) – Glorious by Paul Baloche

In Christ Alone (Galatians 2:20) – Let The Future Begin by Kristian Stanfill (Passion)


TEACHING: Is That a Fact?

With all of the modern advances in economics, technology, and medicine, life should always be getting better and better. But instead, things seem to be going downhill, almost as if the world is cursed.




  1. What was your initial reaction to his message? Do you still feel that way?
  2. Why do logic, knowledge, and science fail so miserably in fixing the problems of the world?
  3. What are some examples of economic, technological, or medical advances showing evidence of the curse?
  4. Read Romans 8:18-25. How does this passage affect your view of life on earth – or your anticipation of the life to come?
  5. Do you agree that the world has lost its ability to produce genius (the likes of Beethoven, Rembrandt, or Newton)? Why or why not?
  6. How can you use what you learned in this message to share the Gospel with your friends, family, or neighbors?

Sunday Rewind | 6.16.2013

Sunday Rewind


God Is Able (Ephesians 3:20-21) – God Is Able by Hillsong

Be Lifted High (John 3:30) – Nothing Is Wasted by Elevation Worship

Nothing But The Blood (Ephesians 1:7-8) – Facedown by Matt Redman

Our King Has Come (Romans 5:1-2) – For The Honor by Elevation Worship

In Your Presence (Deuteronomy 31:6) – Nothing Is Wasted by Elevation Worship


TEACHING: The Prodigal Son, Part 4

The prodigal son’s older sibling seems to carry an attitude of contempt toward his younger brother – and toward his father, from whom he felt entitled to be rewarded for his righteous deeds. The older brother hoped for justice and favor but received a rebuke.




  1. Take a few minutes to reflect on the Rembrandt painting “The Return of the Prodigal Son.” (See the image here.) Which parts of the painting and its symbolism are especially meaningful to you? Did you observe any additional symbolism in it?
  2. Read and discuss Luke 15:25-32. In what ways does the older brother go to his own “far country”?
  3. How do you avoid the self-righteous mentality that says to God, “You owe me”? Can you think of some scriptural truths that counter such a mindset?
  4. Is it easier to preach the Gospel to people rooted in vile behavior, or to those rooted in self-righteousness? How can we talk about God’s grace to either group (including one we might be in)?
  5. Where do you fit in this story? Are you the prodigal son? The older brother? Or do you find elements of both in your own heart?
  6. How has your view of the prodigal son story changed during this series? How has your view of yourself changed?


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Sunday Rewind | 11.25.2012

Sunday Rewind


Alive In Us (Ephesians 2:4-5) – God Is Able by Hillsong

Give Me Faith (Psalm 73:25-26) – For The Honor by Elevation Worship

Always (Psalm 121:1-2) – Here For You by Kristian Stanfill (Passion)

God Is Able (Ephesians 3:20-21) – God Is Able by Hillsong

Jesus Paid It All (Colossians 2:13-14) – North Point Live by Kristian Stanfill (North Point)


TEACHING: Taking God Seriously – Part 2

Jonah needed some dramatic encounters with God’s all-knowing, all-powerful presence to take Him seriously – including being swallowed alive by a great fish. Such divine discipline is painful, but God can use it to bring us closer to Him and to prepare us for greater ministry.




  1. Can you remember a time where you felt like you were receiving chastening or discipline from the Lord? How did that time affect your life afterward?
  2. Read Jonah’s prayer in Chapter 2. What truths about God does Jonah cling to?
  3. How are “the big three” attributes of God revealed in this chapter – omniscience (God knows all things), omnipotence (God has all power over all things), omnipresence (God is everywhere)?
  4. How have you experienced the “bait and switch” nature of sin? Is there an area right now where you’re believing that “life will be better when…”?

Sunday Rewind | 11.11.12

Sunday Rewind


The Church – For the Honor by Elevation Worship

Let Our Kingdom Come (Psalm 59:16-17) – Valley of Vision by Sovereign Grace Music

Great in All the Earth (Psalm 47:1-2) – I Will Go by Starfield

Glorious (Psalm 72:18-19) – Glorious by Paul Baloche


TEACHING: The World Is Waiting – 2012 Missions Conference

As part of RBC’s annual Missions Conference, nine missionaries from every corner of the globe joined us last week to share how God has been working in their respective ministries.

Listen to Bill Hurley’s November 4 message, “On Mission”



  1. Share anything new you learned this week about missions work, or about any of the countries and regions represented by RBC missionaries.
  2. Read Romans 1. How does this passage change the way you think about sharing the Gospel? How does it affect your view of missions?
  3. Is it more important to be a missionary “goer” or a “sender”?
  4. Are you willing to follow God wherever may lead you? If you are comfortable, talk about the calling God has placed on your life and whether you feel like you’re pursuing it.
  5. Spend some time praying for the missionaries we heard from this week, or any of the other RBC missionaries. Learn more here about ways you can pray.

Sunday Rewind | 8.26.12

Sunday Rewind


O Worship the King (Psalm 145:9-10) – Hymns Ancient & Modern by Chris Tomlin (Passion)

How Great Thou Art (Psalm 145:3) – Hymns Ancient & Modern by Charlie Hall (Passion)

Your Love Never Fails (Romans 8:28) – Your Love Never Fails by Jesus Culture

Come Thou Fount (Psalm 16:11) – Original Arrangement

How Deep the Father’s Love for Us (Galatians 6:14) – Mission:Worship by Stuart Townend


TEACHING: Do Not Be Ashamed

Paul exhorted his protege Timothy to trust in the Lord enough to boldly and confidently proclaim the Gospel. As Christians, we must also not be ashamed to stand firmly on the truth.




  1. How would you define “trust”?
  2. What kind of fears prevent you from sharing your faith with others or living a Christ-centered life?
  3. Do you have any “Pauls” in your life to encourage your Christian walk? Do you have any “Timothys”?
  4. Read and discuss 2 Timothy 4, which represents the last words of Paul recorded in Scripture. How do you think Paul’s “unashamed” ministry affected his legacy to Timothy, and to believers through the ages? What kind of legacy do you hope to leave?