Famend chilly case detective, Christian apologist, and bestselling writer J. Warner Wallace (a.okay.a. Jim Wallace) interviews Frank Viola on his signature e-book, Insurgence: Reclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom.
Frank, I’ve read lots of your books and we’ve talked now and again up to now, but some of my readers will not be accustomed to you. Are you able to inform them somewhat about you?
Let’s see. I grew up in New York where I pitched in Little League, main the league in strikeouts. My boyhood dream was to grow to be a serious league pitcher. Throughout my freshman yr, I moved to Florida and pitched in high school.
Quick forward to my early 20s. Someday, I turned on the TV and noticed some guy named “Frank Viola” pitching for the Minnesota Twins!
I had to pinch myself! That “Frank Viola” turned the world famend MLB baseball player and I turned the ravenous writer. 😉
Jesting aside, I’ve written over 30 books, all of that are for Christians who know there’s obtained to be one thing more to Jesus, the Scriptures, and the Christian life that they’ve been exposed to. Therefore, my ministry known as “The Deeper Journey.”
What motivated you to write down Insurgence: Reclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom?
About 10 years ago, I had a burden on my coronary heart to see what the Scripture needed to say concerning the kingdom of God. So I began to take a look at the subject from Genesis to Revelation, not via a scientific theological lens, however by means of a story lens.
I particularly put a concentrate on a phrase used all through the Gospels and Acts. The phrase was “the gospel of the dominion.”
What I found astounded me, deeply challenged me, and riveted me. It altered the best way I seen the Lord, His work, and the gospel.
I additionally in contrast what I had discovered to what I used to be seeing all over social media during the last decade. My statement was: Most Christians merely repeat the talking factors of both the Progressive Left or the Conservative Right. And Jesus Christ and His kingdom are neglected in the chilly.
Out of the social media feed the guts speaks.
Once I stepped again from what I found, it dawned on me that we had misplaced the earth-shaking, jarring, titanic gospel of the dominion that shook the world in the first century.
Within the Summer time of 2017, I spoke in a convention where I unveiled the gospel of the dominion in eight messages. The weekend was electrical. Individuals’s lives have been reworked and we had spontaneous baptisms in response to the messages.
Each one that was baptized made a public career of their choice to break all ties with the world system and give their full and complete allegiance to Jesus Christ and the choice civilization that the New Testomony calls “the kingdom of God.”
I then put it all right into a e-book, in search of to present the gospel of the dominion from Genesis to Revelation as clear as I might, putting it easy terms and in an easy-to-read format.
The Insurgence has begun … don’t miss it.
In your ebook, you argue that we – as a church – have lost the dynamic, titanic, dwelling gospel that Jesus, Paul, and the other apostles preached. How would you briefly outline that historic gospel message?
We are Westerners, so we are the little kids of Aristotle. As such, we wish to compartmentalize fact into neat and tidy definitions.
The danger in doing that is two-fold: (1) sure religious realities – like the kingdom and the gospel of the kingdom — can’t be outlined with out dropping their energy and draining their glory, and (2) for a lot of Westerners, we wrongly equate listening to a definition with having the truth of it.
The New Testomony uses the phrase “kingdom of God” over 80 occasions, and but it by no means defines it. As an alternative, it illustrates it. Jesus would typically say, “The dominion of God is like …” And Paul would reverse that pattern and tell us what the dominion of God was not. Example, “The dominion of God shouldn’t be meat or drink …”
So in like manner, I can inform you what the gospel of the kingdom isn’t. It’s not going to heaven, it’s not signs and wonders, it’s not making an attempt make the world a better place, and it’s not about social justice or getting conservative legal guidelines handed.
The gospel of the kingdom is probably the most highly effective message within the New Testomony, and I do my greatest to unveil it in the guide in a extremely readable means.
What has our current Christian culture adopted at the moment that has changed the traditional gospel you’ve got described?
The options which have replaced the gospel of the kingdom are as follows:
The gospel of legalism on the one hand (God’s holy. You’re not. Attempt more durable),
The gospel of libertinism on the opposite (You’re beneath grace. God understands that you simply’re mere mortal, so it doesn’t really matter what you do in your personal life).
Worship at the altar of Nationalism on the one hand,
Worship on the altar of Globalism on the other.
Worship to the god of Capitalism on the one hand,
Worship to the god of Socialism on the opposite.
Allegiance to the speaking points of the Conservative Proper,
Allegiance to the talking points of the Progressive Left.
None of the above have any actual factors of contact with the gospel of the Kingdom.
Jesus stood outdoors each the Progressive Left of His day (the Sadducees) and the Conservative Right of His day (the Pharisees).
His gospel and His message transcended – and collided – with each. They usually additionally subverted allegiance to Rome and its emperor.
Why did you name your guide Insurgence? What are you suggesting by this title?
The New Testament calls Jesus an rebel (I’m going into this in the ebook). He was an enemy of the State, accused of treason. The gospel of the dominion seems like treason, regardless that it isn’t. Acts 17 makes this clear. Take heed to this description of the apostles and their message:
“They are all defying Caesar’s decrees, saying that there is another king, one referred to as Jesus.”
The Insurgence, then, is the recovery of the titanic, earth-shaking, subversive gospel of the dominion that acquired Jesus, John the Baptist, and the apostles in scorching water.
It’s a religious revolution towards the world system that Jesus, John, and Paul converse towards, and an utter and complete allegiance to Jesus Christ and His various civilization referred to as “the kingdom of God.”
Lastly, what has been the response to your guide to date?
The responses have been beyond what I anticipated. Private revivals (even from many pastors), modified lives, addictions damaged, full allegiance to Christ, and so on.
Listed here are a couple of testimonials from Christian leaders:
I’m discovering this e-book to be singularly unique among the hundreds I own. The timing of this ebook for me personally has the Lord’s fingerprints all over it. In many ways, it has encouraged. Nevertheless it has additionally devastated me. Fairly truthfully, I’m undone in many ways.
The Lord has used the ebook to spotlight and clarify issues of worldliness in my own life. A few of those issues have been obvious to me and I’ve desired liberation. Some have been more subterranean and the Mild has invaded. For three weeks now, I’ve been significantly mulling the concept I should get baptized once more due to the sunshine distributed by this guide. And I plan on it. I need to. I was not aware as a new believer of the totality of what being in Christ meant. One can’t say that after reading Insurgence.
I am inspired that such “a word” was permitted to difficulty to the Physique of Christ because it could possibly only imply that the Lord is able to do something. One thing I have been eager for both personally and for the Physique. I don’t really feel that will probably be a sweeping worldwide phenomena international (the most effective and truest moves of God never are) however I do assume it might affect pockets of believers globally. That will probably be enough to please His coronary heart.
This e-book threads a very precarious needle the place others have tried and missed the mark. It’s virtually inconceivable to put in writing a guide like this without some measure of legalism creeping in. But, the tightrope wire is efficiently crossed in Insurgence. This can be a guide that may smoke out the libertine and legalist hiding in plain sight in each of our hearts.
My prayer for myself is: “Lord please don’t let this word go wasted in my life. Have mercy, I’m determined! It’s an appointed hour in my life. Please don’t let this be another good ebook that moved me merely while I was studying it and for every week two beyond that. DO SOMETHING in my coronary heart! One thing everlasting. One thing irrevocable. Something eternal. Something that brings pleasure to your coronary heart. One thing that meets your want on this hour. Something that moves the boundary markers of your Kingdom ahead! Something that’s absolutely in synch together with your Everlasting Function!”
As a pastor, I read lots of books. Nevertheless, sometimes in our Christian life, we come across a ebook that brings us to our knees. This e-book has caused a revival in my own life, though each web page has been a religious battle. Frank brings his clear and biblically saturated type as soon as once more to the Christian world calling on all Christians to reclaim the Gospel of the Kingdom. As a Christian, I strongly urge you to spend money on your religious life and comply with Frank on a much-needed journey. As a pastor, I strongly warn you that this e-book may have dire worldview altering consequences to your religious walk. “Pagan Christianity” might have disturbed the waters of the evangelical world, however “Insurgence” will capsize the boats of the fashionable Christian church. Should you miss this e-book, then you’ll be lacking a tremendous blessing. I guarantee that you’ll be challenged in a means that you simply never have earlier than. In case you are content material with casual Christianity then this ebook is just not for you. For those who, then again, want a deeper stroll with the Lord, then this e-book will turn into an Ebenezer in your religious journey.
Frank Viola’s newest ebook, “Insurgence: Reclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom” is a recreation changer! I need to be clear. I am an African-American male and a pastor. I’ve struggled with the “divide” within the Physique of Christ in terms of race, economics, and so on. There have been occasions when I’ve been discouraged and disillusioned with other Christians. I carried the flag of “social justice”. I carried the flag of “conservatism evangelical politics”. I carried the “charismatic” flag. I carried the flag of “isolationism”. I carried each flag, BUT CHRIST! I am a Pastor in the city of Philadelphia. I’ve been to seminary and I finished my doctoral work. I say all of that to say that this BOOK HAS RADICALLY CHANGED MY LIFE, MY VISION, AND MY PERSPECTIVE OF CHRISTIANITY! Frank says on page 13, “My hope in scripting this ebook is that its message will ship you from every other model of the gospel except the gospel of the kingdom- a gospel that has been nearly lost to us immediately”. Brother Frank! Your hope and prayer was achieved by the internal working of the Holy Spirit upon my coronary heart, using the words that the Lord gave you on this ebook!
“I have written about fifty books, learn a whole lot—perhaps hundreds IN MY 83 years. “INSURGENCE” IS THE ONE BOOK YOU MUST READ! It is every little thing I consider, stated a lot better than I am graced to say it. You ask me what I consider. I’ll reply: “What he stated!” To all of my beloved buddies and fellows who’re diligently laboring for reformation, restoration and revival: “Your efforts might be unfruitful aside from the dominion foundation clearly specified by Frank Viola’s new e-book.” During all the time of reading this guide my spirit has been vibrating like a tuning fork that has simply been struck!”