George Barna’s “Revolution”

George Barna's lastet book, Revolution, is raising some eyebrows around the country and in one of our next podcasts we'll take a look at the content of his book and its implications for those thinking outside the box. Barna, head of a polling firm on Christian issues, identifies a growing segment of the Christian population who are deeply committed to Christ but live that faith outside of the traditional congregation. He says 30% of committed Christians now live that way and in the next 20 years that will increase to 70%.

In previous books Barna has been aware of this trend for some time, but he approached it as a negative trend and tried to advise congregations how to build a better mousetrap to keep those people contained. Now he identifies this trend a revolution in Christianity and says that those outside are more spiritually passionate, more relationally engaged with other Christians and more concerned with their unbelieving neighbor as those on the inside. He suggests that this trend be encouraged, rather than denounced, and that it will redefine significantly the church in the culture.

He even challenges some of the great myths upon which local congregational commitment is built: You should realize that the Bible neither describes nor promotes the local church as we know it today. The local church many have come to cherish the services, offices, programs, buildings, ceremonies—is neither biblical or unbiblical. It is abiblical—that is, such an organization is not addressed in the Bible.

You can see a summary of the book at his website at his website, or order it from If you have comments, questions or observations you'd like us to interact with on our podcast on this topic, you can leave them in the comment section here, email them to us or phone them in to our question/comment line 24 hours a day at (805) 626-4212.


  1. Just finished reading the book.
    What stuck out to me was how he continually mentions things we must “do” in order to be considered “good christians” and not backsliders. This book will help those who are looking for permission to “do it”
    So while he gives those seeking permission, permission, To me he is still hung up in fruit inspecting to make sure we are on the right path.

    He is still stuck in the mind set of what we must “do” in order to please or be pleasing to Father.
    No thanks I tried that for 30 years and got nothing but tired and burnt out.

    Its an ok book but Barna sure ain’t no Jacobsen!!! hahaha!

    Love you guys!


  2. ust finished the book Revolution by George Barna. When I heard you
    speak of it, I ordered it immediately and nearly finished it the first
    night. What caught my attention was that Barna admitted that while
    researching this topic, he came to an understanding and was converted to
    being a Revolutionary. The part about the affirmations really touched
    me because they confirmed in my heart what the Lord had revealed to me
    before. In fact, I sent these affirmations to several of my friends and
    encouraged them to read the book. One friend got so excited, he made
    copies and took them to Sunday School and passed them out.

    It is so good to come to a knowledge of what Christ is doing in building
    His Church, His Way. I too had determined many years ago that it was
    our responsibility as parents to model the life in the family. Our
    eldest son is now 27 and he asked me if we would have to explain our
    position to institutional people the rest of our lives. My intial
    response was “probably so”, but now realize that we are not unique and
    Christ is really doing a work in a lot of people’s lives. Now that
    Barna is “on board”, a lot of the people who look to him for direction
    are getting a huge wake up call. My prayer is that people will look
    beyond this book and see Christ as the face in believers of this revolution.

    Some time back, I wrote you about my 91 year old father who was
    liberated from intitutions literally months before he went to the Lord.
    When he was suffering in the hospital with excruciating pain of his
    heart dying, he told me that the Lord had spoke to him and said, Relax!
    it is time and I am coming for you. He didn’t ask for the pastor or
    anyone else.

  3. Blog November 2005.


    A new book entitled “Revolution” by the well known researcher George Barna is causing quite a stir. In his book Barna foresees massive changes taking place in the Christian landscape of America. He speaks of there being 20 million believers there who are no longer involved in traditional church models, but who are pursuing their faith in new ways outside institutional church and he declares himself an enthusiastic supporter of what is happening. He foresees that by 2025 only 30% of Christians will be involved in traditional local churches, and that the percentage of those expressing their faith in alternative communities will have risen from 5% now to 30-35% by 2025. Although there is little as yet written about it, is evident that here in New Zealand too there are an ever growing number of devoted followers of Jesus who are stepping away from the old models of church life to pursue their walk of faith.

    Some seventeen years ago, not long after God called us out, I sometimes struggled with the question, “Have we gone astray? It is lonely out here. There are so few of like mind.” One day, as I wrestled with these thoughts, I had a picture come into my mind of a huge field which had been ploughed, harrowed and sown. Here and there in the field were a few isolated shoots of green. As each growing shoot looked around it was aware of the vast distances between it and the others. I felt Father say to me, “That is what you are like now, like those isolated far-separated growing points, but do not fear for I have sown the whole field and one day it will all be green.” Barna’s book is just another evidence that what the Lord said to me is true. All over the world the field is greening. There is a mighty work of the Spirit going on.

    A Scripture in Isaiah 59:19b (NIV) says, “He will come like a pent-up flood that the breath of the Lord drives along.” And in Isaiah 60:22 , “The least of you will become a thousand, the smallest a mighty nation. I am the Lord: in its time I will do it swiftly.” I wonder are we living in such a time?

    If there is one question which haunts me about what is happening it is, will we simply let God do what He wants to do, seeking only to walk in obedience to Him and to the leading of the Spirit, or will there be men who step in seeking to rule, control and organize as has so often happened in the past? We need to give heed to another Scripture from Isaiah 60: 21 “Then will all your people be righteous and they will possess the land forever. They are the shoot of MY PLANTING, the work of MY HANDS for the display of my splendour.” What is happening is I believe a work of the Lord’s hands and we must be very careful not to take it into ours.

    Jack Gray

  4. “Revolution” will be discussed this Friday night (2-3-06) on the nationwide Moody Broadcasting Network. “Open Line” is a call-in show which is aired at 8-8:55 pm CT. The phone number is 312-329-4460.

    The programs are archived for download.

    For station and time of broadcast information see

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