A 2,000 Year Old Strategy for Engaging Culture with the Christian Faith

The thing I love about reading is that you never know where you’ll find creative advice. I was reading recently about the Christian writer and theologian Tatian who was a Syrian who lived in the second century. He was born in Assyria (Mesopotamia), and as an adult he journeyed to Rome, where he first discovered Christianity. He was shocked at the pagan cults he witnessed throughout the city and as a result, began reflecting on religious issues. During his investigation, he read the Old Testament, and the more he read, the more he

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Where Do Pastors Get The Idea That The Bible Is Practical?

You have no idea the number of pastors who tell me that their unique gift is to teach the Bible from a practical perspective. They focus on helping their congregation understand the Bible in practical ways. I assume they mean like the owner’s manual of a car, or the instructions for operating a computer. But the problem is – the Bible may be the least practical book ever written. In fact, I wonder if

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Five Commandments for Becoming a Media Savvy Pastor

One of the great things I get to do in my career is work with pastors and leaders who are remarkably savvy when it comes to using media to share their story. Jack Graham from PowerPoint Media Ministries is a great example. As a result, today his programs are sharing the gospel throughout the world and reaching millions of people. In most cases, leaders like Jack are experienced, committed visionaries who understand the value and the power of the media. But I also have the opportunity to spend time with less experienced pastors and ministry leaders who feel just as called to use media in a meaningful way, but have serious questions like: 

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Why TV Ministries Still Matter

I may be one of Christian TV’s loudest critics, but one of the most disturbing trends in the ministry world is the disappointing lack of interest in using TV as a tool for impacting today’s culture with the message of Christianity. Back in the seventies and eighties in particular, men like Billy Graham, Oral Roberts, Rex Humbard, and others reached vast audiences through television. In spite of some later embarrassments, in many ways those years were considered a “golden era” in Christian broadcasting, and gave birth to numerous global television networks. But a number of high profile sex and financial scandals helped turn a younger generation of pastors and leaders against the medium – and far too many cheesy, corny, and low budget programs didn’t help. For many church leaders today, much of what they see on Christian television is

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Communication is a TWO Way Conversation

Generation after generation pastors and Christian leaders get it wrong.  They believe our only responsibility is sharing the message.  But we also have a responsibility to do our best to make sure that message is received. To be honest, this new two-way conversation is remarkably similar to the method of worship during the days of the early church.  Frank Viola and George Barna, writing in their book, Pagan Christianity:  Exploring The Roots Of Our Church Practices,  reveal some of the most common practices of worship in the early church, including:

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