The Fantasy Fallacy

Shannon Ethridge the author of 19 books, including the million-copy bestselling series, Every Woman's Battle. Shannon is also a speaker, lay counselor, and advocate for healthy sexuality with a master’s degree in counseling/human relations from Liberty University. Since 1989 she has spoken on the topics of sexuality and Christian spirituality.

Her passions include: Challenging adults and teens to embrace a life of sexual integrity, encouraging married couples in their pursuit of sexual and emotional fulfillment, counseling women who have looked for love in all the wrong places and equipping parents to instill sexual values in children at an early age.

Her newest book is The Fantasy Fallacy: Exposing the Deeper Meaning Behind Sexual Thoughts (Thomas Nelson)Shannon had contemplated writing this book for three years, but the current Fifty Shades of Grey phenomenon drove her to tackle the topic now.

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Why the Dead Sea Scrolls Matter

The Dead Sea Scrolls are among the most significant artifacts of the Ancient Near East. In this special article that first appeared online at the Baptist Press, Benjamin Hawkins shows how the Dead Sea Scrolls speak to the reliability of the Bible. The Dead Sea Scrolls are currently being exhibited at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, where Hawkins is a PhD. student. The Scrolls are also on display in New York City in a magnificent display presented by The Franklin Institute.

When a Bedouin shepherd discovered the Dead Sea Scrolls in Israel in the 1940s, few people immediately understood their importance. After taking the scrolls back to his camp, this shepherd left one of them on the ground to be torn apart by children, while one person reportedly used another scroll fragment to wipe a baby's bottom.

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Are Bible Chapters and Verses Inspired?

David Capes, one of the scholars and writers for The Voice, a new Bible translation that reads like a story with all of the truth and wisdom of God's Word, answered a question about Bible verses and chapters. Are they inspired?

We recently had a fan of The Voice Bible email us to say that we had left out a verse.  He told us to look at Acts 19 and see that there was no verse 7.  My first thought was, “that’s impossible.” You see we had about a dozen people checking and rechecking those kinds of things.  At one point I counted 14 levels of review from start to finish.  My second thought was, “I better check this out!”

Well, I have slept several times since we finished Acts and couldn’t remember exactly what we had done.  Frank Couch and I looked at the text—we were together at the Justice Conference in Portland at the time.  As I turned to Acts 19, it became clear to me what we had done.  We combined Acts 19:1 and 19:7 because there is a single detail in what is traditionally known as verse 7 which makes better narrative sense early in the story. Note too that we put a footnote at the bottom of the page to indicate why we made that editorial decision.

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Why God...He in Scripture?

David Capes is the Thomas Nelson Research Professor at Houston Baptist University. He is the author of numerous publications and is one of the top scholars and writers for The Voice, a new Bible translation that reads like a story with all of the truth and wisdom of God's Word. Recently Dr. Capes was asked why the translators of The Voice used masculine pronouns to refer to God?

When it comes to pronouns, English provides three options: masculine, feminine, and neuter.  Think of it this way.  It is either God…He or God…She or God…It.

Well, you can rule out the 3rd option because “it” is used with impersonal antecedents. We don’t use “it” to refer to persons; we use “it” to refer to things. Remember too our theme is built around the idea of “the voice” that has been and continues to speak. Things might make a sound but they don’t have a voice. Only a person has a voice and the Christian Scriptures are clear that God is not an impersonal force or thing; God is a person.

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Miraculous Movements

Jerry Trousdale is Director of International Ministries for CityTeam International, an organization he joined in 2005. Jerry co-founded Final Command Ministries, an organization dedicated to establishing church planting movements among Muslim people groups. 

In his new book, Miraculous Movements, Jerry recounts an amazing change taking place within Muslim communities where the truth of Jesus Christ is turning around the lives of many thousands of Muslims. This close look at what the Lord is doing to spread the gospel highlights the key scriptural principles that help Christian reach out in love to share the gospel in their own community and around the world. 

Jerry answered Five Questions about CityTeam, its ministry to Muslims and Miraculous Movements.

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5 Questions for Tullian Tchividjian

William Graham Tullian Tchividjian is the Senior Pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. A Florida native, he is a visiting professor of theology at Reformed Theological Seminary and a grandson of Billy Graham. Tullian was the founding pastor of the former New City Church, which merged with Coral Ridge in April of 2009. Jesus + Nothing = Everything (Crossway 2011) is his first book since his devastating year of losing his father and being called for a congregational vote of confidence at Coral Ridge.

Sometimes you have to go through hard times to discover what, or who, you are anchored to. Sounds like this is what this book came out of.

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5 Questions for Chuck Bomar

After serving as pastor of Student Ministries at Cornerstone in Simi Valley, CA, Chuck Bomar planted Colossae Church in Portland, Oregon. He is the founder of CollegeLeader and has created numerous resources for college ministry leaders. Chuck speaks frequently and has a tremendous heart for youth workers, especially those in college-age ministry. Chuck is married to Barbara, and together they have two daughters; Karis and Hope. Oh, and lest we forget, Chuck is a regular ConversantLife.com blogger. His latest book is Worlds Apart (Zondervan 2011).  

We've heard rumors that you drink more coffee than anyone else in Portland, and that's saying something. Talk about your strategy of frequenting cafes as the pastor of a growing church in Portland.

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5 Questions for Phil Cooke

Phil Cooke has produced media programming in more than forty countries around the world, and in the process was shot at, survived two military coups, fell out of a helicopter, and in Africa was threatened with prison. Meanwhile, he's helped some of the largest nonprofit organizations in the world navigate periods of dramatic disruption and change. His newest book, Jolt! (Thomas Nelson), will show you how it is possible to change your life while still maintaining your integrity and creativity. ConversantLife.com asked Phil 5 Questions about Jolt! and the messsage he wants to convey.

You use the concept of “jolt” in two different contexts—passive and active. Talk about these and why it’s crucial to be a person who is pro-actively changing.

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5 Questions for Brian McLaren

Brian McLaren, heralded as one of America's 25 most influential evangelicals by Time magazine, is an author, speaker, social justice activist, and pastor. His work has been covered in the New York Times, and Christianity Today. In his newest book, Naked Spirituality, McLaren shares practical wisdom for living a truly spiritual life as he presents 12 exercises for beginning and sustaining a meaningful relationship with God. Brian was kind enough to answer 5 Questions posed by ConversantLife.com.

In Naked Spirituality, you list four typical answers to the question, “What do you mean by spiritual?” Since these are all generic answers to some degree, how do you nudge people from a general desire to be spiritual to Christianity, or more specifically, to Christ?

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Head-to-Soul Makeover

Shelley Leith is the author of the new book, Head-to-Soul Makeover, Helping Teenage Girls Become Real in a Fake World, and co-author of Character Makeover: 40 Days with a Life Coach to Become Your Best You. She lives in Southern California with her husband and their five children, who have been the targets of Shelley’s early attempts at character development exercises.

Head-to-Soul Makeover. The name sounds like another study for teen girls on self-esteem.

My daughter Heather came up with that name. This study is based on my book for women called Character Makeover, but Heather told me that teenagers would not show up for a study with the word “character” in the title, so she gave it this clever twist. It’s actually a ten-week study on how to develop eight different Christlike character qualities, and I use television reality shows as metaphors for the different qualities.

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Amazing voices from the faith community. These are pastors, social justice leaders, musicians, cultural influencers, filmmakers and more who blog from time to time on ConversantLife.


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