3 Personal Observations About NOAH, the Movie

Reminder, my book – Reimagining Church – is free today only (April 4th). Click here to get your copy along with other freebies and great deals.

In this post, I’m not going to review the film because I haven’t seen it.

But I feel compelled to say three things about it.

1. Whether this movie is inaccurate, accurate, good, bad, epic, or stinks to high heaven, the attention it’s getting right now is an opportunity for you, dear Christian, to turn the event into a conversation piece with your friends who don’t know the Lord. Especially if you unveil the “real meaning” of the biblical story.

2. What do I mean by “real meaning?” Peter helps us here by pointing out (in both his letters, mind you) that the story of Noah and the flood points to Jesus Christ and God’s act of salvation in Him. Here’s a riff from my book with Len Sweet Jesus: A Theography on this score (the endnotes aren’t included, just the numbers for them):[Continue Reading...]

I’m Finally Responding: Part V

This is Part 5 of my response to your questions from the 2013 Blog Survey.

Click here to read Part 1.

Click here to read Part 2.

Click here to read Part 3.

Click here to read Part 4.

When will Frank stop being so ecumenical?

You have to be new to my ministry to ask such a question.

If by “ecumenical” you mean why do I fellowship with other Christians with whom I differ on peripheral doctrines and practices, then the answer is: When Jesus Christ returns, I’ll consider stopping.

Jesus and the apostles were quite clear: It’s carnal to be sectarian and sinful to be exclusive when it comes to those who have trusted in Christ.

Please read Getting Rid of a Sectarian Spirit Once and For All and Rethinking Christian Unity. And remember these words of Jesus from Mark 9:[Continue Reading...]

I’m Finally Responding: Part IV

This is Part 4 of my response to your questions from the 2013 Blog Survey.

Click here to read Part 1.

Click here to read Part 2.

Click here to read Part 3.

Can you discuss ways that Christians can be more Christlike? Too many times Christians are so unkind and mean-spirited that it turns people away. Your thoughts? 

I’ve covered this topic extensively on this blog as it’s part of my contribution to the Body of Christ. Here are some examples:[Continue Reading...]

How to Stop Agonizing Over Finding God’s Will For Your Life

Today, I’m pausing my responses to your questions and will resume that series on Friday.

You can read Part I, Part II, and Part III if you’ve missed them.

The 93rd episode of my podcast is now live. This episode is for every believer, but especially for Christians in their 20s and 30s.

So if you’re in your 20s and 30s, be sure to listen to this episode and share it with all your peers.

If you’re older, then share it with every person you know — friends, children, nieces, nephews — who is in their 20s and 30s.

If I had this wisdom when I was in my 20s, it would have saved me YEARS of agony and stupid decisions.

You can listen to it in the following ways:[Continue Reading...]

I’m Finally Responding: Part III

This is Part 3 of my response to your questions from the 2013 Blog Survey.

Click here to read Part 1.

Click here to read Part 2.

I’m confused about elders, pastors, shepherds, and overseers. Have you written about this?

Yes, extensively in Reimagining Church. They are all the same person, but each title describes a different aspect of that person’s function. The New Testament makes this quite plain. Elders are overseers and shepherds (pastors). 

What’s your view of water baptism? 

Answered here Rethinking Water Baptism and The Gospel of the Kingdom. [Continue Reading...]

I’m Finally Responding: Part II

This is Part 2 of my response to your questions from the 2013 Blog Survey.

Click here to read Part 1.

I know that several years ago you paused your ministry of planting organic churches to focus on helping the poor and give attention on your more general ministry of the deeper Christian life. Are you still in that season or have you resumed your work with organic church?

For those who are new to the blog, two years ago I announced that my ministry was shifting focus. I’ve not been involved in “organic church” since that time. That includes planting new churches, encouraging and equipping existing ones, and writing books on the subject.

In fact, I’ve not written a book on ecclesiology since 2009. And the last church I planted was in 2010, four years ago.

Instead, my writing focus has been on “The Deeper Journey.”

Much of my time “on the ground” is spent helping the poor and developing relationships with non-Christians, which takes a lot of time.

So Frank Viola shouldn’t be considered “the organic church” guy. Most of my books aren’t on that topic, and the same is true for my podcast episodes and blog posts. In fact, I’ve only written 3 books on that topic!

Jesus Manifesto really sumps up the heart of my ministry and my contribution to this generation.[Continue Reading...]

I’m Finally Responding: Part I

Recently, I began responding to your questions from the 2013 Blog Survey. I’ve responded to several of them already in the following posts:

The Rapture Question

The Message Most Needed, But the One Few Want to Hear

There were so many other questions from the survey that I had to break my response into 5 parts. Here is part 1.[Continue Reading...]

The Missing Ingredient

Publishers keep sending me their new books on discipleship.

Alas, I’ve yet to find one that goes into the essential element of being a disciple of Jesus: How to live by the indwelling life of Christ.

This is why I released my 10-audio online discipleship course, LIVING BY THE INDWELLING LIFE OF CHRIST.

Today, I’m featuring the very first message in that course.

At the time of this writing, it’s been listened to 27,000+ times.

Click here to listen to the message for free

You can also listen to it on iTunes or RSS feed. It’s the podcast episode from 10/4/10.[Continue Reading...]

Christianeze Revisited

Today, I continue to answer questions from the 2013 blog survey.

You can check out previous questions and my answers here:

The Rapture Question

Having an Instinct for the Cross

Someone else asked me to give some examples of Christianeze beyond what I’ve already covered.

In Revise Us Again, I gave two examples of Christianize, with a chapter devoted to each one. They were:

“Let me pray about it.” (which is Christian code language for “no”).

“The Lord told me.” (which is often a self-justification for an unpopular decision a person has made.) 

There’s are two more examples of Christianeze that I didn’t mention in the book.[Continue Reading...]

You’re Putting God in a Box!

Have you ever heard someone make this statement?

“You’re putting God in a box!”

I’ve watched it used in two ways. One is legitimate, the other is a deflection from a spiritual truth.

The legitimate use of it usually occurs when someone ignores what the Bible says about the Holy Spirit’s ministry, or they try to restrict it beyond what Scripture teaches.[Continue Reading...]