Changing the Calculus of the Culture War

The 123rd episode of the “Christ is All” podcast has just been published.

It’s called Changing the Calculus of the Culture War. 

You can listen to the episode in the following venues:

iTunes Subscribe (for Apple devices)

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Beyond Pod (for non-Apple devices)

If you don’t use a smart phone, then click here to see the complete list of episodes on one page, including this episode

Click here for detailed instructions on how to subscribe to the podcast using your smart phone or tablet, how to rate the podcast in iTunes, and how to find time to listen to podcasts if you’re busy.

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How to Respond to the World’s Narrative

“Dear friends, don’t be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through, as if something strange were happening to you. Instead, be very glad—for these trials make you partners with Christ in his suffering, so that you will have the wonderful joy of seeing his glory when it is revealed to all the world. If you are insulted because you bear the name of Christ, you will be blessed, for the glorious Spirit of God rests upon you. If you suffer, however, it must not be for murder, stealing, making trouble, or prying into other people’s affairs. But it is no shame to suffer for being a Christian. Praise God for the privilege of being called by his name!”

~ 1 Peter 4:12-16

“If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first. The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you. Do you remember what I told you? ‘A slave is not greater than the master.’ Since they persecuted me, naturally they will persecute you. And if they had listened to me, they would listen to you.” 

~ John 15:18-20

“Everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.”

~ 2 Tim. 3:12

The world system with all of its growing megaphones pumped out by the glut of social media – not to mention Hollywood and cable networks – has presented two falsehoods effectively and eloquently. They are:

If you love someone, you must accept everything they practice and believe.

If you believe that a certain lifestyle is immoral, this means you hate the individuals who practice those lifestyles.

These are clear falsehoods, and Jesus of Nazareth – this world’s true Lord – would have been indicted, condemned, and sentenced for violating both if He were still here in the flesh.[Continue Reading…]

An Important Question for Christians in Their 20s & 30s

author frank viola

As many of you know, I started using Instagram recently, and I’ve enjoyed connecting with many of you there. (If you’re new to the blog, you can join me on Instagram at frankaviola.)

In that connection, I’m conducting some new research on Christian Millennials (which many of you are).

So in this post, I want to specifically ask a question to only those of you who are in your 20s or 30s.
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The Eternal Purpose

Ask the average Christian today, “What is God’s Ultimate Purpose?”

Most will give one of four answers:

1. To save the lost.

2. To make disciples.

3. To make the world a better place.

4. To glorify God.

According to the whole sweep of Scripture, each of these answers is incorrect.

Each answer points to an aspect of God’s Ultimate Purpose, but none of them constitutes His Ultimate Purpose.[Continue Reading…]

Introducing the Mystery of God

The 119th episode of the “Christ is All” podcast has just been published.

It’s a message from Ephesians 3 called “Introduction to the Mystery of God.”

In it, I cover a wide variety of topics and themes, many of which are rarely addressed today.

As always, if you enjoy it, pass this post on (using the share buttons below) and be sure to subscribe in iTunes or Beyond Pod below.

The email address I mentioned in the episode is spelled like this: FrankViolaCourses@hotmail.com

Listen to the episode in the following venues:

iTunes Subscribe (for Apple devices)

 

Beyond Pod Signet

Beyond Pod (for non-Apple devices)

If you don’t use a smart phone, then click here to see the complete list of episodes on one page, including this episode

[Continue Reading…]

Select 3 People to Be on My Ministry Team

Most of you know that I’m built for collaboration.

Team work and co-laboring are part of my DNA.

Speaking historically, it’s obvious to me that the Lord has done far more when His servants worked in teams than He has with individuals flying solo, no matter how gifted those individuals happened to be.

Moving the discussion over to the secular realm, both The Beatles and Led Zeppelin were super groups. What they accomplished together trumped (by far) what each artist accomplished on their own after the bands dissolved and each member went solo.

For these reasons, a ministry coalition is something that deeply appeals to me.

Because I believe so much in the team-concept, I’ve done writing collaborations with Leonard Sweet, Mary DeMuth, Greg Boyd, Derwin Gray, and George Barna.

That said, some of you have expressed your desire to see me involved in a Christ-centered ministry coalition.

I fully resonate with that desire, for it’s been in my own heart for many years.[Continue Reading…]

New Music Video That Will Inspire You

My new book THE DAY I MET JESUS: THE REVEALING DIARIES OF FIVE WOMEN FROM THE GOSPELS is at a 50% discount this week from Parable.com along with a bunch of exclusive bonuses. Get your copy now before this offer expires.

Back story to the song and video.

In 2012, I delivered a message to a Christian community entitled Living in the Divine Parenthesis.

The night before I brought the message, I wrote a song as a companion to the talk which I entitled, “He Has Anointed Us.”

The lyrics are based on Luke 4:16-20 and Ephesians 1:18 through 2:18.

I wrote the song to the tune of Wavin’ Flag by K’naan — a song that Leonard Sweet turned me onto when I visited him in his home one Thanskgiving weekend.

As soon as I heard the song, I told Len that one day I’d write new lyrics for it which glorified the Lord.

(The practice of rewriting lyrics to popular songs by the Christians stretches back to the Reformation, at least.)[Continue Reading…]

What You Miss When You Read the Gospels

“If you don’t want to buy my new book, we can still be friends and stuff. It’ll be awkward, sure, but still friends.”

~ Brant Hansen #tishumor

We’ve just released the 113th episode of the Christ is All podcast, and I think it’s among the best.

One of my missions, goals, and purposes is to transform the well-worn, familiar stories of the Bible from one dimensional, black & white, mono audio into 3D, High Definition, Technicolor with surround sound!

That’s precisely what I’ve sought to do again in my newest offering, The Day I Met Jesus: The Revealing Diaries of Five Women from the Gospels, with Mary DeMuth.

Dr. Michael Brown recently interviewed Mary and me on his show. In it, we give examples of what we so often miss when we read the Gospels, and how to bring them to life again. But more important, how we can encounter the Jesus of the Gospels anew and afresh when reading our Bibles.

You can listen to the episode in one of the following ways:

iTunes (Apple phones)

BeyondPod (Android phones)

Direct Streaming[Continue Reading…]

Your Time Has Not Yet Come

Jesus made the statement “my time is not yet come” several times in the Gospels.

The point of this statement is that there is a certain time for significant events and seasons which occur in a servant of God’s life.

This is especially true for ministry.

If God has called you to a specific work, there is a time in which that work will find its greatest fulfillment and its widest impact.

If you launch out and try to make things happen before your time has come, you will see little fruit and a lot of frustration.

If you are passive and miss your time, you will see little fruit.

The good news is that God will let you know when your time has come. If you’re in tune with the Spirit, it will become obvious.

Note that you can be in ministry now, and yet “your time” still hasn’t yet come.

In the meantime, it’s your responsibility to prepare for that time.[Continue Reading…]

The First Relationship

Today’s podcast episode is a spoken message I delivered at a conference in Toronto, Canada in 2009. It’s the first part of a series of talks on “the first relationship” which will be part of an upcoming course, “A Deeper Journey into God’s Eternal Purpose.”

firstrelationship

A women who heard this message live was in tears when I finished. She kept repeating, “It’s so simple. It’s so simple. It’s so simple.”

I’d be interested to hear what effect it has on you as well.

In short, it takes some complex theological ideas (what the ancient Christians called the perichoresis, the Divine and eternal dance between the Father, Son, and Spirit) and turns it into a simple narrative.

Listen to the episode in the following ways:[Continue Reading…]