September 3, 2014

About Mike Bell

Meeting Jesus Through Community?

I am involved in a number of different communities. Some are communities of faith, but most are not. Now, this may sound like a cop out, but my primary way of introducing people to Jesus has been to introduce those in my non faith communities to my faith communities. Let me introduce you to first […]

Another Look at Church Collapse Statistics

I would like to preface this post by saying that I do not have any joy in reporting these statistics. My hope and desire is for vibrant, growing churches, that are an increasingly effective witness in the communities in which they are found. That being said here is a snippet from a couple posts that […]

Where do I belong?

I want to spend the next couple of Fridays talking about community. This week I want to focus on one way that you can find a church community that is a good fit theologically. I left the Plymouth Brethren in 1986 over a matter of biblical interpretation, with no idea where I would end up. […]

Things I “Learned” from Rapture Theology

I could see the conclusion of this week’s posts coming from a mile away. I spent the first 24 years of my life in Plymouth Brethren churches that were at the forefront of promoting Rapture Theology. Here are some of the things that I “learned”. The return of Christ is in God’s timing, so Satan […]

Thoughts on Hitchhiking

We rented a cottage this week, and for the first time in quite a while were able to get our whole family together for a holiday. We have no Wifi and as a result monitoring of comments will be spotty, so play nice! We have been staying at Sauble Beach, a beautiful sandy beach, seven […]

#1 Reason Why Church Attendance Is Down – Really?

No, the number one reason why church attendance is down is not pizza. I did think however, that the story of a fictional iMonk pizzeria might help us understand the flaws in the stated reason and proposed solutions that are detailed later on in the post. Imagine you are a neighborhood pizzeria owner.  As the […]

The Church, Youth, and Sex – Did I Report It Wrong?

I am a huge Ed Stetzer fan. I follow a grand total of 14 people on twitter, and he is one of them. Ed, by the way, has 125,000 following him! So who is Ed Stetzer? Here is his bio in Christianity Today: Ed Stetzer is the President of LifeWay Research Division, a prolific author, […]

Religious Switching and Metaphor

Five years ago I created and published the above graph at Internet Monk. It was based on a very large survey by the Pew Forum that showed how people had switched from their childhood faith group to their current faith group. If you have trouble understanding the graph, you may want to read the original […]

The Evangelical Liturgy

This post was going to be a followup to Friday’s post – , but then I got unexpectedly called into work for an extended period of time. I do want to continue on this theme, but with the time I had left I could not do it justice. I will be following up with Chaplain […]

Cigar City Hunahpu’s Imperial Stout – Double Barrel Aged: A Metaphor for Liturgy

An Internet Monk writer walked into a bar… “Bartender,” I said, “What would you recommend for a thirsty man?” “This is your lucky day,” he replied. “We serve Cigar City Hunahpu’s Imperial Stout here. It is the perfect beer and ranked as the number one beer in America on rankbeer.com. Let me read you what […]