A Jesus Response to Suicide

Last month, I wrote about the issue of suicide from a Christian perspective and made some comments about Robin Williams’ death. The article is called A Jesus Response to Suicide.

You can read it here

Also, I re-recorded the 99th episode of the “Christ is All” podcast. The original recording was poor and the update at the beginning was far too long.

The new recording is far superior and there’s no lengthy update at the beginning.

I regard this episode to be immensely important. If you feel it’s valuable, please share it.

Just go to 7 Ways to Destroy a Friendship[Continue Reading...]

Should Christians Sell, Market, and Promote Products & Services?

The following is a guest post by my friend Jeff Goins. In it, he shreds a profound misunderstanding that some Christians have about money, selling, and marketing.

I’ve addressed these questions myself in years past. See the links at the bottom of the post. But Jeff’s article does a terrific job of excoriating some of the ludicrous ideas about money, promotion, and selling that some Christians have in their heads.

Thankfully, the viewpoint that Jeff obliterates is fast becoming a “dinosaur view” among believers today because it’s both unscriptural and illogical, not to mention that it’s extremely selfish as well.

Be that as it may, the warped view that Jeff addresses still exists. So our hope is that this article will put such notions to rest once and for all.

Should Christians Sell, Market, and Promote Products & Services?

by Jeff Goins[Continue Reading...]

What Christian Authors & Speakers Can Learn from the Music World of the 1960s

The 1960s was a remarkable time for music.

The British invasion brought to the United States enduring bands like The Beatles, The Animals, The Rolling Stones, and The Who.

Then the California sound emerged with The Beach Boys, The Doors, Janis Joplin, and a host of other bands.

Other artists emerged quickly, namely, Cream (Eric Clapton), Led Zeppelin, and the inimitable Jimi Hendrix.

Then you had Bob Dylan who inspired many of these artists and vice versa.

What’s incredible to me about this time period is that virtually all of the above named musicians met each other, hung out together from time to time, listened to one another with adoration, and respected each other.

They would also play informally with one another at certain times. And even more encouraging, they inspired one another.

I’ve watched so many interviews with so many of these artists and marveled at how each of them would praise the others. Not just from afar, but because they took the time to get to know one another.

Each time, I’ve had two reactions.[Continue Reading...]

Beyond Today’s Pop-Soap-Opera Christianity – The 4 Camps of Christians in Their 20s, 30s, and 40s

My 5-Book Grab-Bag Discount Ends Tomorrow. The books are priced lower than they appear on the Grab Bag page. Also, the discount for my Living by the Indwelling Life of Christ course ends August 13th. Don’t miss the opportunity.

“All labels have their problems, and, to be sure, ‘evangelical’ is fraught with them. But I am not giving it up.”

~ Roger Olson

Millennials & The Church: A Different Take

As I pointed out in numerous times on this blog, the center of evangelicalism is collapsing.

Countless evangelical Christians are moving to the left or to the right. Namely, they are moving toward liberalism or they are moving toward high church or low church traditions. They are moving toward individualism or communitarianism.

In this post, we will briefly survey the four major streams within evangelicalism with an eye to Christians in their 20s, 30s, and 40s – often called Mosaics and Busters or Generation X and Generation Y or Millennials.

My analysis is based on what I’ve observed in my extensive travels worldwide, speaking in a variety of conferences represented by the different streams (wherein I’ve interacted with the other speakers and attendees), and corresponding with thousands of evangelical Christians in their 20s, 30s, and 40s.[Continue Reading...]

The Problem with Christianity & My Discipleship Course is Available as a Physical Product

In Paul’s day, there were two enemies of the gospel that he constantly battled.

1. The gospel of legalism – this is essentially the message that says, “God is holy, you’re not, try harder.”

Paul took dead aim at this “gospel” in Galatians and other letters.

2. The gospel of libertinism – this essentially says that because we are under grace, any word of exhortation, admonishment, or challenge to be sold out to Jesus Christ and deal with issues in one’s life is “religious,” “legalistic,” and “wrong.”

James shredded this “gospel” in the letter of James, and Jude mentioned it when he said “they turn the grace of God into license to sin.”

Some Christians who have read my book From Eternity to Here and many of the articles on this blog have called me a “grace teacher.”

Others who have heard my message, The Gospel of the Kingdom, say I’m legalistic, even though there’s not one word of legalism in that message . . . not one rule . . . and absolutely no appeal to live for Jesus through our human will power.

That message actually tells us what the grace of God does in our lives.

The grace of God teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age.

~ Paul in Titus 2:12[Continue Reading...]

So You Don’t Believe in God Anymore?

Quick Announcement:

My book REIMAGINING CHURCH is free on Kindle today — July 31st, 2014 — only.

Get your copy and share this post with your friends so they don’t miss out.

Sometime last year, a biblical scholar who is part of the progressive left wrote a blog post that went viral.

In the post, the scholar bulbously argued why he didn’t believe in God anymore. Instead, he now “trusts” God.

All he was doing was using the word “believe” as a synonym for mental assent.

I read the post and shrugged my shoulders. Then I scratched my head, befuddled as to why the post went viral.

There was nothing profound or earth-shaking in it at all. He was just describing the essence of biblical faith . . . which is trust.

I knew today’s Christianity was shallow . . . but has it moved into the universe of boeotianism?[Continue Reading...]

How (Not) to Respond to the Sick and Suffering

The following is told from the lips of Lazarus, the man whom Jesus raised from the dead. The story presents several different ways in which people respond to Christians when they are sick or suffering.

I could not sleep most of the night. Tossing miserably, my mind refused to shut down. Neither would the pain vibrating throughout my body.

If I die, what will happen to my sisters … and my father? With the silversmith shop closed, who will provide for them? These were the worries that tormented my mind.

That evening my three closest friends, Nathan, Samuel, and Tobias, paid me a visit. I opened my eyes at the pounding of feet up the stairs toward my room.

After the men entered, they each stood around my bed and began to speak.

Nathan leaned forward, his face the picture of sadness.

Somberly he said, “Lazarus, you know that I lost my faith in God years ago. Like you, I was taught from childhood that YHWH would deliver our people from our oppressors. But there have been no signs of it. Not just for my generation, but for generations before me.[Continue Reading...]

Rethinking Hell

To the many who have asked, here are my comments about the subject of hell that I’ve written and tweeted in the past.

* Whatever the nature of eternal punishment is — conscious torment or annihilation — this question has never altered my desire to bring people to Jesus Christ. Jesus is real Life, for the here-and-now, as well as for the future. So my motive for evangelism has never been to give people a fire-insurance policy.

* The greatest Christian minds differ on the NATURE, PURPOSE and SUBJECTS of hell (subjects = who exactly will go there). But whatever we can say about it, the NT is clear on two points:

1) it exists, and 2) it’s undesirable.

* I am not a universalist. I believe that all mortals must repent and trust in Jesus Christ for salvation. With respect to those who have never heard the gospel, or those who have only heard a distorted version of it, I’m content to leave such matters into God’s hands. He is righteous, just, and merciful, and I trust Him.

* Add to that, I don’t believe that every mortal automatically receives eternal life upon birth (of the flesh). I can’t speak of what happens immediately after death. The Bible talks about a judgment after death, but it’s not crystal clear on what happens at the moment of death. People can only speculate.

* “Jesus is not one of many ways to approach God, nor is He the best of several ways; He is the only way.” ~ A. W. Tozer

* If there’s life on other planets & they need a Redeemer, Jesus of Nazareth is it.[Continue Reading...]

Modern Day Moses

Sometimes music can touch us where printed words cannot.

This is one of my favorite songs of all time . . . it speaks to something deep within my own heart and thus inspires me every time I hear it.

Note: my podcast episode from August 2011 — God’s Dream: What Does It Look Like? — goes along with this song. Give it a listen.

If you like the song, share this post using the “share” buttons below. Most Christians have never heard it, so send them a blessing. :-)[Continue Reading...]