How long has it been since you had an entire weekend to enjoy with your spouse?
Faithlife author groups give you the chance to interact directly with Bible scholars, pastors, and influential Christians—within your favorite books or in the group.
This is a chance to ask those burning questions you’ve always wanted to ask an author, but couldn’t. If you’re following the group, then within your book you can highlight the text and ask a question to the group—and get an answer from the author.
A couple weeks ago, you couldn’t go on Facebook without seeing someone link to this plugin that calculated your most-used words. It runs through everything you’ve ever posted on Facebook to determine what words you say the most. The bigger the word appears on the “word cloud” and the more centrally it’s located, the more frequently that word shows up in the things you’ve posted.
Elyse Fitzpatrick has been counseling women since 1989. She’s a retreat and conference speaker and the head of Women Helping Women Ministries. She has a certificate in biblical counseling from CCEEF in San Diego and an MA in biblical counseling from Trinity Theological Seminary.
Even pastors and their wives make mistakes in marriage. Not everyone can be vulnerable enough to admit their mistakes, but Matt and Lauren Chandler want to show you that every Christian couple has their own challenges to overcome—and as you’ll see in the video below, the mistakes they’ve made were rooted in some of their biggest problems as individuals.
Matt and Lauren Chandler are hosting an online marriage conference from February 19–20. Together, they’ll discuss God’s good design for love, marriage, sex, and redemption—sharing insights from their own struggles coupled with what Scripture reveals about romance.
Faithlife is your online Christian community. It goes where you go. Time, distance, and busy lives don’t have to separate you from your church or small group when you can take the conversation on the go.
Thanks to a few of our more recent updates to the Faithlife Groups mobile app, it’s even easier to keep up with the conversation in your church family. Any time you’re directly mentioned in a post, or you receive a message, you’ll feel the familiar buzz on your phone that tells you someone is talking to you.
If you’ve been waiting to join Faithlife Groups with your small group or church, now is the time. With the addition of push notifications, Faithlife Groups is even more equipped to be the ultimate church communication tool. With features like Community Notes and the discussions tab, Faithlife Groups helps you keep the conversation focused on what matters most to you. Share your thoughts about what you’re reading, and help each other stay on track with a shared Bible reading plan.
As always, if you ever think something could be better, just tell us! You can let us know on the forums, or in the Faithlife Beta group. Our mission is to serve the church, and if we can do that better, as part of the church, you get to tell us how.
There’s something you should know about Faithlife: we’re always improving. That’s why we have such a short feedback loop: we can hear what you have to say, and we respond directly to that feedback. Whether that happens on our forums, within Faithlife Groups, or through our award-winning customer service team.
Recently, we’ve made some significant changes to Faithlife Groups and your experience on Faithlife.com:
Since its launch in 2012, Faithlife.com has been a massive undertaking—it’s connected to most of Faithlife’s ever-growing list of products. We’ve often called it “the glue” that links everything together. We hope that our products help you grow and learn with your church, and we’ve made Faithlife.com faster to help you do that. When inspiration hits, don’t wait to share it with the people you love.
Thanks to the new preview window, you can check your notifications and messages with a quick glance—so you don’t have to leave the page to see what’s new. Click on the message or notification icon to activate the preview, or click “see all” to access your entire inbox.
Faithlife Groups now has a geolocation button in the search bar. If you’re trying to find groups or people, the geolocation button lets you find the groups and people using Faithlife Groups near you.
A few months ago, I read Radically Normal by Josh Kelley, right after I read Radical by David Platt. The two books presented very different perspectives on a similar issue: how do we live out the gospel and devote our lives to Christ in this modern world? What does it look like to be “all in”? Platt advocated for radical abandonment of the American lifestyle and finding our place within the global mission of Christianity. Kelley suggested that a radical devotion to Christianity could be just as dangerous to the Christian as living a life of complacency, and urged that we invite God into every aspect of our life instead.
As a reader, the relationship between these two books was fascinating. I don’t normally reach out to authors, but at the end of Radically Normal, Josh’s invitation to continue the conversation seemed genuine, so I figured, “Why not?” and tweeted him. He responded right away, and we had a great conversation about his book over email (and eventually in an interview on Faithlife Today).
Radically Normal is too close to Josh’s heart for him to not be invested in what you think as a reader. The book shares what his family has shown him about enjoying life’s pleasures as a child of the creator. He discusses what he learned when he took a second job at Starbucks and became a bivocational pastor during one of the busiest, most stressful times of his life. Most importantly, he casts his vision for modern Christians called to live in this world but not of it. As a pastor, Josh wants to stir up meaningful conversations—and participate in them.
That’s why Josh is inviting you to join his Faithlife Group for Radically Normal. Once you get the book, you can ask Josh questions directly within the book using Community Notes, or you can start a discussion with Josh and other readers.
Josh has included two suggested reading plans to help you get started (note: you can’t join the reading plan until you own the book), as well as a small group planning guide and small group discussion questions—you can find it all in the documents tab.
Dr. Darrell Bock was recently asked about his endorsement of Dr. Michael Heiser’s new book, The Unseen Realm. His response offers insight into how he approaches new ideas in Bible scholarship. (You can read the entire exchange in Dr. Darrell Bock’s Faithlife Group).
Justin Daniel said that conversations with professors, teachers, pastors, and friends left him feeling conflicted about The Unseen Realm. He asked Dr. Bock how much of Dr. Heiser’s new book can be accepted as truth.
Bock says there are some core questions we need to ask when we encounter new ideas in biblical scholarship:
1. How careful is the writer in handling Scripture and addressing interpretive options?
2. Am I nervous simply because this is saying something different than what I have heard?
3. Is that nervousness justified given the biblical evidence the writer presents?
4. On this particular topic, is it possible that I’ve been exchanging part of the worldview Scripture presents for a more material, Western-modernist way of thinking?
5. Is there anything really problematic in the big scale of doctrinal truth that is at risk here?
“What these [five] questions are getting at,” Dr. Bock says, “is if, like a Berean, I am open to examining Scripture in the face of what might be church ‘tradition’ in a less than biblical sense.”
In Acts 17, Paul and Silas tell Jews living in Berea that Jesus was the Christ—the fulfillment of the Scriptures. The Bereans “received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so” (Acts 17:11). That’s how Dr. Bock suggests we wrestle with ideas or interpretations that are foreign to us.
He went on to say, “One of the reasons I reviewed [The Unseen Realm] positively is because I do think it met that mark especially on questions one and [four] above. At the least it is worth seriously exploring. The existential-emotional element you raised is what question two [and three] probes. It is all too easy to get in a defensive mode in reading Scripture and not be open to learning something fresh from what it teaches.”
We also have to consider who the new ideas are coming from. Is this person considered an expert in their field? How did they arrive at these new conclusions?
Dr. Bock says, “Mike is thoroughly trained in Semitic languages and the background that goes into Old Testament study. His dissertation was also in this area. I am certain he has spent more time in these texts than anyone you asked about it.”
It isn’t good enough to dismiss new scholarship because it does not align with what you are familiar with. Bock says, “If you have questions about it, ask yourself what biblical evidence would you raise against it, or what question worth pondering do I legitimately have . . .”
How do you approach new ideas in Bible scholarship? Tell us in the comments!
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Want to know what everyone’s talking about? Get your copy of The Unseen Realm!