|Tools & Trainings for Organic Church Movements
Issue No. 20 12.12.08
|My wife and I were watching "Without A Trace" the other night. "Without A Trace" is a T.V. mystery drama where a person vanishes from their family and friends and the FBI then gets involved to solve the mystery of the missing person. There is something riveting about mysteries of all kinds.|
The Bible talks about mysteries, things not fully understood, veiled or that needs the help of the Holy Spirit. In 1 Timothy 3:16, Paul says that "...great is the mystery of godliness." A few verses later Paul goes on to encourage his readers to "...discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness." (1 Tim. 4:7) and a little further in his letter he instructs his audience to "...pursue...godliness." (1 Tim. 6:11). So what is the mystery that we should be pursuing with discipline?
Godliness can be the quality of ones life. To be godly is to have qualities in your life that are likened to God. Qualities like love, purity, selflessness, faithful, kind and the like. Godliness can also speak of the content of ones beliefs. This seems to be the emphasis in 1 Tim. 3:16 when it is read in its' context. Therefore godliness can be both what we believe (truth) and living out the qualities of what we believe.
To be honest, the truth about Jesus being 100% God and 100% man is quite impossible. That is without God and His "supernatural-ness." This truth is a mystery. How can a man also be God without any imperfection, sinful thought or activity?
The resurrection is another truth that is mysterious. How can a person who has died not only be raised from the dead, but also raise himself from the dead (John 10:17-18). These two mysteries are only the beginning. These type of mysteries can only be believed, embraced and defended by a supernatural changing of ones heart by the Holy Spirit (another mystery as to how this happens). One can know the facts, but believing them in your soul is quite impossible without the Helper, the Holy Spirit (John 14:26, 15:26).
So let me encourage you to pursue the mystery of godliness. Pursue both the truth of Jesus Christ and living out of that faith so that your character, over the time of your life, becomes more and more like Jesus Christ. How that has happened in my life is great mystery for which I am eternally thankful! Pursuing this mystery is a lifetime adventure.
Church Multiplication Associates
Memphis, TN // Story 1
January 16-18, 2009
@ The Snowden House
Trainings in the planning stages for 2009
- Atlanta, GA // Story 1
- Dayton, OH // Story 1
- Phoenix, AZ // Story 1
- San Diego, CA // Story 1
- Mobile, AL // Story 1
- Seattle, WA // Story 1
- Chicago, IL // Story 2
Featured Resources--NEW to CMAResources
ReJesus: A Wild Messiah for a Missional Church.
by Michael Frost & Alan Hirsch
"How has it come about that the development of Christianity and the
church has given birth to a society, a civilization, a culture that are
completely opposite to what we read in the Bible, to what is
indisputably the text of the law, the prophets, Jesus and Paul?" So
adduces Michael Frost and Alan Hirsch from the introduction of their
newest book citing philosopher Jacques Ellul.
In ReJesus, Frost & Hirsch examine the practice of
everyday Christian spirituality and ultimately ask if what we practice
today is what Jesus passed down to his first century followers. The
authors note that many institutionalized forms of Christianity have
traded the radical way of Jesus for the stability of outward religious
expression. Frost & Hirsch issue a call to the church, therefore,
to refocus its spiritual practice upon the true Author and Foundation
of our faith.
Called Together- A Marriage Preparation Workbook
by Steve & Mary Prokopchak
Called Together is a unique "couple-to-couple" workbook to
help prepare for a successful marriage union and is designed to be used
by a mentoring couple leading premarital sessions with engaged couples.
It provides everything needed to begin a great marriage: in-depth
biblical counseling, work sheets to help share feelings, communication,
financial planning, sexual relations, post-marriage checkups, and
Break the clergy/laity divide and empower couples in your church to mentor newly engaged couples!
Pagan Christianity: Exploring the Roots of our Church Practices
by George Barna & Frank Viola - Revised and Updated
Have you ever wondered why we Christians do what we do for church
every Sunday morning? Why do we "dress up" for church? Why does the
pastor preach a sermon each week? Why do we have pews, steeples,
choirs, and seminaries? This volume reveals the startling truth: most
of what Christians do in present-day churches is not rooted in the New
Testament, but in pagan culture and rituals developed long after the
death of the apostles. Coauthors Frank Viola and George Barna support
their thesis with compelling historical evidence in the first-ever book
to document the full story of modern Christian church practices.
>>To Order Click HERE
Exiles: Living Missionally in a Post-Christian Culture
by Michael Frost
a biblical, Christian worldview for the people who are not at home in
the traditional church or in the secular world. As exiles of both, they
must create their own worldview that integrates their Christian beliefs
with the contemporary world. Exiles seeks to integrate all
aspects of life and decision-making and to develop the characteristics
of a Christian life lived intentionally within emerging (postmodern)
culture. It presents a plea for a dynamic, life-affirming, robust
Christian faith that can be lived successfully in the post-Christian
world of twenty-first century Western society. This book will present a
Christian lifestyle that can be lived in non-religious categories and
be attractive to not-yet Christians
Featured Article |
Search & Rescue Learning Poduleby Neil ColeWe learn in a variety of ways...so we wanted to pass on
a new vehicle for learning:
Shapevine has partnered with Neil Coleand CMAResources to produce an online learning course based on Neil's latest book,
Search & Rescue. This Learning Podule will benefit church leaders, church planters, small groups, house churches and anyone interested in fulfilling the Great Commission.
Simply go to www.shapevine.com, click on ELearning and you will be able to find the Search & Rescue Learning Podule.