Kingdom Triangle Discussion

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

The Unconventional Manner of Kingdom Triangle Living

JP says that the three elements of the Kingdom Triangle were central to Jesus' ministry in the Gospels, in Acts, and in the first four centuries of the church. In light of the important interrelationship of these elements, JP asks,
"Why can't one be intellectually careful, emotionally together, and comfortable with a life of intimacy with God and a vibrant inner life, and one who is learning to be naturally supernatural?" (page 196)
How do you respond? How does this quote rub you? (The comments feature is enabled on this blog post).

Do you or your church experience a tension, perhaps a hindrance, when attempting to integrate all three elements of the Kingdom Triangle?

Why do we sometimes profess in our theology or live our life (individually or corporately) as though the three elements identified in the Kingdom Triangle are somehow against each other?

Monday, June 25, 2007

Moreland Speaks at The River

Tustin, CA - Sunday, June 24 - JP spoke at an exciting and innovative church called The River.

Pastored by Collin Cumbee, The River is a growing Vineyard church in Tustin, California, and it is already a fellowship of believers that practices all three legs of the Kingdom Triangle.

The service went very well and JP stayed for an outdoor lunch with parishioners. "The constant feedback I got," says Moreland, "is that people were moved and encouraged by the idea of striving for a balance of all three legs. This was a new idea to them and seemed to be helpful. "

A number of people purchased books to send to pastors and lay leaders in other parts of the country.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Moreland Introduces Alpha

Pasadena, CA - June 22 - JP opened up the Alpha Training Workshop at Lake Avenue Congregational Church in Pasadena, California.

The workshop was for lay and pastoral leaders from churches all over Southern California (a few attended from other states) who facilitate evangelistic efforts in their churches.

Alpha's philosophy of ministry and evangelism is at the heart of the main themes in the Kingdom Triangle, and Workshop coordinator Marti Clark invited JP because of his reputation in evangelism and, more importantly, because she believes that Kingdom Triangle has put into book form what Alpha is all about. Moreland introduced the conference to the three legs of the triangle and was very warmly received.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Wilberforce Forum Leader Reviews Moreland

T.M Moore, an author, editor, and dean of the Centurions Program of the Wilberforce Forum, offers a handsome review of Kingdom Triangle. Moore advises the following:
"If you only read one book by a philosopher this summer, read Kingdom Triangle. You’ll be impressed by J.P.’s grasp of the issues, the sweep of his critique of contemporary thought, and the laser-like focus of his recommendations. You’ll also be amazed to hear a philosopher speaking so personally, clearly, and boldly about the practical way out of our contemporary intellectual, moral, and spiritual morass."
And also here ...
"Moreland is his usual straight-up-get-a-life self in calling the followers of Christ to stop making excuses for insipidity in the spiritual life and roll up their sleeves and get to work on the disciplines needed to renew our souls."
"When J.P. and I were in college together, I suppose he would have been right above me in my list of guys least likely to do anything really too serious in Christian work. His life is proof that God can change anyone who has a willing heart. What a delight it is to see him standing forth as an accomplished voice of reason, spirit, and truth against the fleeing darkness of radical unbelief. J.P. Moreland has much to teach us, and Kingdom Triangle is as good a place to begin going to school with him as any he has written yet."

Moreland Interview on Converse with Scholars!

June 21, 2007 - J. P. had the joy of speaking and taking questions for an hour and forty-five minutes on a live podcast of "Converse with Scholars."

Converse with Scholars is a live, on-line classroom that serves as a part of Reclaiming the Mind Ministries. During the podcast, host Michael Patton and students logged-on from around the country listened to Dr. Moreland and had the chance to interact with him. Moreland has high praise for this ministry and considers it a real honor to be able to stand behind Patton and his cohorts.

"The questions were all excellent," says Moreland. Since many of the students were new to Kingdom Triangle's emphasis on the power of the Spirit and Kingdom, Moreland thought it was especially fruitful to have a warm, honest dialogue about this third leg.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Christian School Board Member Supplies Kingdom Triangle to Faculty and Staff

Costa Mesa, CA - June 15 - Paul Wolfe, a long-standing board member of the prestigious Mariner's Christian School, purchased several copies of Kingdom Triangle for the school's entire faculty and staff.

Wolfe stated that "the worldview analysis, the treatment of the nature of knowledge, and the wholistic view of Christian discipleship is something that is of great importance for Christian education."

He hopes his example will encourage board members of other Christian schools to do the same.

Similarily, Ken Smitherman, President of the Association of Christian Schools International, said the following about Kingdom Triangle:

"[Moreland] takes the reader on a journey to pursue a life that is well lived, consisting of virtue and character, and one that manifests wisdom, kindness, and goodness."

Monday, June 11, 2007

Distinguishing Classical Happiness from Contemporary Happiness

Pomona, CA, June 10 - JP spoke at all three services at Pomona First Baptist Church, which included a total crowd of at least 1500 people.

JP talked about the difference between "classical" sense of happiness (flourishing in a life of character and virtue) vs. the "contemporary" sense of happiness (seeking pleasurable satisfaction). He showed that for many people the classical sense has collapsed into the contemporary sense because "people have stopped living for a larger purpose and are obsessed with personal satisfaction." Moreover, "Pleasure has replaced purpose, a flat stomach is preferred to character and meaning."

As he shows in Kingdom Triangle (especially, chapter 1, 4, and 6), JP argues that the way of Jesus is the way of true happiness, in the classical sense. Jesus' way is an invitation into what it means to truly live; to truly experience what it means to be alive.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Kingdom Triangle at the Mars Hill Forum

Carlsbad, CA, June 8 - The North Coast Calvary Chapel featured JP and his Kingdom Triangle at this year's "Mars Hill Forum."

JP did a snapshot look at the meaning and importance of Kingdom Triangle. According to JP, "the atmosphere was very exciting ... The Mars Hill folks are to be thanked for their faithfulness over the years."

Nearly 150 copies of Kingdom Triangle were sold to an audience of about 250. It was observed that many people purchased copies to send to influential Christian leaders in other parts of the country. Nancy, an event coordinator, made the following observation:

"For many years, JP has been known for his commitment to restoring clear thinking and the importance of the mind to evangelical Christianity - so he has a lot of credibility when he speaks of the other legs of the triangle. First of all, its clear that he's thought these issues through carefully. Second, anyone who's been interested in apologetics and clear thinking (or encounters such people) has to take care to keep a tender heart and emotional balance. In this regard, JP's insights and exhortations are much appreciated. Third, I think Christians appreciate a way to embrace the power of the Holy Spirit in the life of the Body today that doesn't leave behind clear thinking and is not superstitious or sensational."

Well said! The evening ended with a Q&A time. For nearly an hour afterwards, people talked with JP and got their books autographed.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Several Thousand Hear JP at Rock Harbor

Costa Mesa, CA, June 2, 3, 4 - During the course of a three day speaking engagement, JP addressed something like 5,000 people at Rock Harbor. JP spoke Saturday evening, then at two services on Sunday morning, and concluded on Monday evening.

He spoke about the three legs of Kingdom Triangle as a way forward towards individual and church maturity in the postmodern world. "My heart for Rock Harbor is that they would mature as a light in the world and be a vibrant church for years to come," said JP.

The event concluded on Monday night with a well-attended Q&A with JP and teaching pastor Mike Erre, encouraging people to be honest and open with their questions and doubts.

"The time was shockingly wonderful. I love the dear folks at Rock Harbor and have the utmost respect for Mike Erre and the other staff--they are all so dear to me. I had rich interaction with dozens and dozens of folks, and I believe the Lord Jesus was pleased with the time. I am encouraged that we sold 800 copies of Kingdom Triangle because this is sure to impact the church and spread from there to other churches."

* To book JP for future speaking engagements, contact

Monday, June 4, 2007

JP Interview with Zondervan Mobile

Zondervan Mobile, which has 10,000-plus subscribers, did a"weekly author interview" with JP. See here.

Q: How and why are these "essential ingredients" of the Kingdom Triangle necessary and interrelated?

In the book of Acts and the first four centuries of the church before she became too "successful" and too "organized," the three legs of the Kingdom Triangle were the central aspects to church planting, evangelism, spiritual growth, and discipleship. And it's extremely important that all three are valued, wisely practiced, sought, and taught as part of the church's self-identity. If we have a recovery of the Christian mind and of theology as a source of knowledge and not merely true belief without the cultivation of an inner tenderness and an affective, mystical spiritual life, we become arrogant, we live in our heads, and we try to control things too much. If we have inner-life spiritual disciplines and formation without Kingdom power, it can degenerate into a Christianized self-help program. If we have Kingdom power without the life of the mind, it can become anti-intellectual, extremist, and harmful.