Friday, December 2, 2011

The Frank Viola Project by Michael Spencer (iMonk)

The Frank Viola Project (And Why You Should Take It Seriously) 

By Michael Spencer (iMonk)

Sometimes, I think we evangelicals talk way too much about the wrong things and far too little about more important things. I hardly ever- ever- find myself in a conversation about what is the Gospel. Or what Jesus would be teaching us about the kingdom today. Or how to meaningfully repent of our entanglement in various American idolatries. These conversations just don’t happen around me (and I am surrounded by evangelical Christians.) But the church? Oh yeah, we talk about church all the time. Preachers. Sermons. Music. Corporate Music. Programs. Buildings, Budgets. Music. Why we changed churches again. What we like. What we don’t like. How great such and such a church is. What our church needs to start doing. Why this group at our church is wrong, or bad, or stubborn. Why a particular worship leader gets it right. Why we need a new whatever. The talk about church is endless. Now I believe deeply in the church as a place of spiritual formation, but I am also deeply aware of the problems and limitations of the church.

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Monday, November 28, 2011

Epic Jesus by Frank Viola: Press Release

A Call to Encounter the Christ You Never Knew

In “Epic Jesus,” Frank Viola pulls back the curtain on Paul’s letter to the Colossians and gives readers a glimpse of Jesus Christ that is breathtaking, heart-warming, challenging, and dramatic.

The book is based on a spoken message that Viola delivered at the Momentum 2011 Conference. The message went viral as soon as the recording of it was placed online. “Epic Jesus” is based on that message.

The book creatively puts the first chapter of Colossians into a drama. It’s a right-brained presentation of the glories of Christ in Colossians chapter 1. The drama builds step by step until its glorious climax at the end. Readers will be given a fresh look at the Gospels, of the Kingdom of God, of the Mission of God, of the Church, and of Jesus of Nazareth. Paul’s message of the gospel is reconciled with Jesus’s message of the gospel as well. The book brilliantly puts the gospel into its first-century setting, showing what it meant for its original hearers as well as how it applies to our 21st-century world.

“Epic Jesus” summarizes Viola’s entire written ministry, which centers on Jesus, God’s Mission, and the Church.

About the Author: Frank Viola is a frequent conference speaker and author of numerous books on the deeper Christian life and church renewal, including Jesus Manifesto, co-authored with Leonard Sweet, Reimagining Church, the best-selling From Eternity to Here, Epic Jesus, and Finding Organic Church.

Epic Jesus: The Christ You Never Knew by Frank Viola

Present Testimony Ministry/November 2011/eBook / PDF/Kindle/Nook $3.99

Audio, Book, and Video

Click here for the PDF of the press release

Friday, November 25, 2011

A Vanishing God by Frank Viola

Jesus often comes to us in unexpected ways and unexpected means.
Think about how He came to Earth. For centuries, Israel had
waited for a political Messiah. They expected Him to lead a rebellion
and free Israel from Roman oppression.

But how did the Messiah make His entrance? He came in a way
that made it easy for His own people to reject Him. He came as a frail
baby, born in a feeding room for animals. There He was. The promised
Messiah who was expected to overthrow the Roman Empire and set
Israel free from oppression. A needy Nazarene born in a manger.
When Jesus grew up, He ate and drank in their presence and taught
in their streets (Luke 13:26). Yet they didn’t recognize Him. He was
unassumingly modest. A mere craftsman; the son of a craftsman.
He grew up in the despised city of Nazareth, fraternizing with the
despised and oppressed. But more startling, He befriended sinners
(Luke 7:34). As such, the people of God didn’t recognize Him. Why?

Because He came in a way that made it easy for them to reject Him.
And what about the disciples? Read the story again. Jesus continued
to break out of their expectations. He couldn’t be pinned down, fi gured
out or boxed in. The Twelve were constantly confounded by Him. His
teachings were offensive. His actions scandalous. His reactions baffl ing.
But the greatest offense of all was the cross. It offended everyone—
both Jew and Gentile. The only crown the promised Messiah-King would
accept was a crown of thorns. Look at Him again. A suffering Messiah, a
defeated King. It’s easy to reject Him.

Click here to read the rest of the article.