“Viva la Revolución!” (Again!)



From the Parousia Weekly Update Letter For The Week of January 26, 2006

A feline fracas is fomenting and the fur is flying fast and furious (don’t you just love alliteration). I’m referring of course, to the release of Barna’s latest and perhaps most controversial book, Revolution. And the current fracas involves a recent commentary by the editor of Charisma magazine, J. Lee Grady, in which he pretends to review Barna’s book. Unfortunately, he didn’t review the book. He simply popped a cork and vented. And frankly, I thought it was embarrassing. Now, in order to be fair, if you would like to read the commentary for yourself, you can click on the following link where we have it posted: www.parousianetwork.com/Charisma_Commentary.htm.

O.K. Now that I’ve been fair, I want to address his points, what few he actually made. According to Charisma, Barna is “advocating the demise of the local church.” Nope, sorry. Barna’s merely reporting a demise which was well underway when he published his first book, Frog In The Kettle, back in 1990 and which has been steadily accelerating in our Post Modern culture. The difference now is that in Revolution Barna has drawn a disturbing conclusion, namely, that the life, nature and expression of “church” as we have known it is undergoing a radical transformation, led by people whom Barna labels “Revolutionaries” (hence, the title for the book, Revolution).

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The Manifestation of the Spirit

“Jeff, can we sing Kum Ba Ya?”, Judy asked.

I must admit I had a hard time to keep from rolling my eyes at her rather “childish” suggestion, but since I was leading a prayer time for the East African people group we live amongst in northern Wisconsin, I thought I should respectfully follow her lead.

And boy, am I glad I did… because God was in “Kum Ba Ya”. In fact He was all over it and it sparked and directed our next 90 minutes of prayer, praising and warfare for this people group.

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THE SPONTANEOUS EXPANSION OF THE CHURCH

Even if the supply of men and funds from Western sources was unlimited and we could cover the whole globe with an army of millions of foreign missionaries and establish stations thickly all over the world, the method would speedily reveal its weakness, as it is already beginning to reveal it. The mere fact that Christianity was propagated by such an army, established in foreign stations all over the world, would inevitably alienate the native populations, who would see in it the growth of the domination of a foreign people.

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Telling Stories

A few weeks ago I was investigating story telling as a means of
communicating with non-literates.  This was tied in to a possible trip
we were taking to an Asian country where we would be working with
primarily oral learners.  I was keen to explore it, and so tried it out
with our home church, who loved it.  Somewhere in there, I also used
the method with a young man staying at our house.  I told him Jesus'
parable of the wise man building his house on the rock.

Yesterday, I was amazed to discover that this young man had told the
story and the lessons he had learned to our son, who had in turn told
them to someone else who had posted it on his blog.

For some time, I have been wondering whether telling stories would
be a good way of communicating with the under 30s in this country.
They are literate, but books are not their preferred method of
learning.  I think it is worth investigating further.

GO FISH!

When Jesus called His disciples to follow Him and become “fishers of men”, this was more than just picturesque speech! He was giving them a word picture that would serve them the rest of their days. Let´s examine this situation a bit more closely: And Jesus said to them, "Follow me and I will make you become fishers of men." And immediately they left their nets and followed him. (Mark 1:17)

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A Refection on the Beauty and Simplicity of God

Once upon a time, Almighty God told a farmer to build a boat out of wood. For its time, it was a really HRod_walsh_smallUGE boat! God told him to build it 300 cu. x 50 cu. x 30 cu. Beautifully simple, round numbers, don’t you think? He also told him that there should be a door, three decks and a window in it and gave him about 100 years to build it…

I’m sure by now you recognize this Genesis account of Noah and the Ark- which took place over 4000 years ago in human history. What struck me recently is the fact that God told a farmer to build an Ark that would be the biggest sea-going vessel ever built out of wood and the largest ship of any kind until 1858!

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A Rational, Reasoned Look at Leadership in the NT Church

One of the urgent issues in the growing (dare I say fledging ) house church movement in the USA is the subject of leadership. It seems we are at odds with the institutional / program-based church so much we have swallowed the idea that “What was bad for them is bad for us.” In longing to move away from top-down, pyramidal leadership and decision making and the potential dangers of hoarding power by a few, we seem to have moved away from a very biblical position as well: God calls men by the Holy Spirit to be leaders in the church!

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313 A.D. The death of Christianity and the birth of the Christian religion.

Picture yourself this fine day at the hospital and you have just come in from the waiting room to the doctor’s office. What’s the first question the doctor has for you?: “Tell me where it hurts?” You Bk201920going20to20the20doctoranswer,“Oh, Doc, I had some bad food last night and my stomach hurts terribly.” Now imagine that your “condition” has no obvious symptoms and that you have had this condition from birth!!

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It seems that change is rarely – if ever – welcomed in the Church.

Church history has shown it is easier for a sleeping church to attack the messengers of change that God sends, rather than accept their teachings and possible corrections. This was the case with the Old Testament prophets whom God sent to Israel, and this has been the case throughout Church history to the present day.  Paul Hattaway

Micro Church on NBC Nightly News

Here is a video of interest on the growing simple/micro church movement. Click on this link: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3032619/

Then scroll down and click on “Micro churches are big on faith” to watch the segment from NBC Nightly news that aired yesterday (Sunday).

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