Combatting Muscular Christianity

"In 'Young, Restless, Reformed' circles, a new generation is discovering Jonathan Edwards and 'masculine Christianity' in one fell swoop … One noted pastor has said that God gave Christianity a 'masculine feel' … Jesus and his buddies were 'dudes: heterosexual, win-a-fight, punch-you-in-the-nose dudes.' Real Christian men like Jesus and Paul 'are aggressive, assertive, and nonverbal.' Seriously?"

Michael Horton

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1607935891/fight-church-documentary-about-christianity-and-mm/widget

kickstarter.com

Macho Man Mark Driscoll has been using Sex, Rock (Indie), and Violence to build his empire, and he has been highly successful!  As a "pastor and Bible teacher" (Mark's pet phrase), he definitely knows what a guy wants… 

Driscoll and his YRR cohorts have concocted a clever way to attract young men (aka dudes) to Jesus through Masculine Christianity, and it appears to have climaxed this year.  Where will it end and is anyone speaking out against this fleshy form of faith?  The answer is a resounding YES!  There are a number of individuals fighting against this dangerous trend, and we are grateful for their push back! 

Lynne Tait, an Australian and regular commenter here at TWW, had an excellent response to our previous post, as she quipped:

"I seriously wonder if these guys have read the same Bible as I have. My God chose to be beaten up, nailed up and killed, told His followers to put away their swords, sat little children on His lap, got down and washed other people’s dirty feet, told us to turn the other cheek and go the extra mile and said we were to be distinguished for our love. There is no room there for the glorification of violence or phallic worship of any kind. In fact, I believe He overturned patriarchy with the simple statement “call no man Father”. Any guy (and I say this seriously) who has so many unresolved issues about his masculinity needs to be speaking to a counselor, not a congregation." 

Our friend Wade Burleson has recently written some excellent posts on this topic, which we highly recommend:

Piper's 'Masculine Christianity' Actually Emasculates

Memo to Mars Hill:  The Suppression of Church Women ls Not the Cure for the Feminization of Church Men

Michael Horton has just taken on the machismo mentality that pervades the Young, Restless, and Reformed crowd in an article entitled Muscular Christianity.

He begins by sharing the contradictions he saw in church during his formative years – from the "meek and mild " portrait of Jesus by Warner Sallman to the manly sports figures who came to remind the congregation that it was a virile Jesus who turned the tables on the moneychangers in the temple and drove them out with a whip.

Horton acknowledges that gender roles have been challenged and that congregations have been divided over how women can serve the body of Christ. He then explains that the YRR crowd has embraced the teachings of the fire and brimstone preacher Jonathan Edwards and “Christianity that has a masculine feel” simultaneously.

He concurs with Mark Driscoll and others that men have been put off by sappy Christian love songs and a feminized church atmosphere that is geared toward women, children, and older people.  He mentions David Murrow’s book Why Men Hate Going to Church (2004) and reiterates Murrow’s claim that men resist “conformity, control, and ceremony”; however, it certainly appears to us that guys have no trouble conforming to the status quo Mark Driscoll has established.

Michael Horton then makes this excellent point:

“In the drive to make churches more guy-friendly, we risk confusing cultural (especially American) customs with biblical discipleship. One noted pastor has said that God gave Christianity a ‘masculine feel’ . . . ‘Jesus and his buddies were "dudes: heterosexual, win-a-fight, punch-you-in-the-nose dudes.’ Real Christian men like Jesus and Paul "are aggressive, assertive, and nonverbal." Seriously?”

He adds “enough with the beards” (intended to make a spiritual statement), “federal husband” syndrome, and books on marriage and family advice. He advocates for less emphasis on gender stereotypes and more emphasis on “making disciples of all nations, all generations, and both genders”.

The diverse body of Christ shares “one Lord, one faith, one baptism”, and we should reflect that. I have done an inadequate job of presenting all of Michael Horton’s points, so please take the time to read his thought-provoking article.  We are keeping Michael Horton in our prayers because he will surely come under attack from the macho men he has just rebuked.

This trend of muscular Christianity has inspired the making of a documentary about the "confluence of Christianity and Mixed Martial Arts"FIGHT CHURCH "follows several pastors and fighters in a quest to reconcile their faith with a sport that many consider violent and barbaric. Faith is tried and questions are raised. Can you really love your neighbor as yourself and then punch him in the face?", as stated on the Fight Church website. 

Here is additional information found at that link:

"The film is being directed by Academy Award-Winning Director Daniel Junge and his directing partner, Bryan Storkel. It is being produced by award-winning producers Eben Kostbar and Joseph McKehleer.

Our goal is to tell this entertaining story in a completely objective tone, and to let the story speak for itself. Like the Oscar-nominated Jesus Camp, the film will present these incredibly provocative characters in an objective and often sympathetic light. We will ask the audience to come to their own conclusions about the connections between religion and condoned violence, as well as, explore the growing mainstreaming of MMA in the US, and discuss Christianity in our post-modern society."

This video includes additional information about the Fight Church documentary:

 

 

We will continue to monitor this film project and will do our best to keep you up-to-date on its progress.

Finally, we leave you with a satire by one of our loyal commenters – Dave AA (Apostle of the Appalled)

May his humor and sarcasm be an encouragement to you. (Sorry about the words below being in red – I don't know how to turn off the Bible verse feature.)

Acts Chapter 32. Or, The founding of the ratatouille family of gender-gospel churches.

Feel free to post, season, or add ingredients to taste. Just don't heat above lukewarmness.

Act 32:1 When the day of T$G arrived, the male leaders were all together for the misunderstood gospel in one place.
Act 32:2 And suddenly there came from the speakers a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire auditoriYUM where they were sitting.
("Maybe God is STILL trying to get my attention, suggested John")
Act 32:3 And video screens appeared to them and rested in front of each one of them.
Act 32:4 And the leaders of the leaders were all filled with systematic theology and began to speak in exposition as their own minds gave them utterance.
Act 32:5 Now there were dwelling in Louisville Seminarians, devout men from every nation under heaven.
Act 32:6 And at this sound the multitude came together, and their misunderstandings were cleared up, because each one was hearing them speak in sermons. (god is not the god of bewilderment, but of systems).
Act 32:7 And they were amazed and astonished, saying, "Are not all these who are speaking eloquent?"
Act 32:8 And how is it that we hear, each of us in his our breakout sessions?
Act 32:9 Pennsylvanians and Maineians, and folks from other states
Act 32:10 and other nations, and visitors from D. C.
Act 32:11 both Baptists and Presbyterians, networks of planters and Families of gospel churches–we hear them telling in learned language of the substitutionary atonement.
Act 32:12 And all were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, "Now we know what this means!"
Act 32:13 But others mocking said, "They are filled with lukewarm ratatouille."
Act 32:14 But Dever, standing with the other nine Marks, lifted up his voice and addressed them: "Men of The Reformation, and all who dwell in Louisville, let this be known to you, and give ear to my words.
Act 32:15 For these people are not filled with the Spirit, as you suppose, since it is almost the third millennium since the perfect bible came.
Act 32:16 But this is what was uttered through the plain understanding of scripture, interpreted by Aristotle,
Act 32:17 "'And in the last days it shall be, God declares, that I will pour out my Doctrine on all flesh, and your sons…shall preach expositorially, and your young men shall be elders, and see what the sheeple are up to in their bedrooms, because if you don't have the young men, you have NOTHING, and your old men shall be patriarchal leaders, protectors, and providers,
Act 32:18 even on my male servants… in those days I will pour out my biblical teaching, and they shall preach Greco-Roman-inspired three-point sermons.
Act 32:19 And I will show eloquence in the pulpit above and discipline in the pews below, propitiation, and inerrancy, and vapor of ESS,
Act 32:20 the sheeple shall be turned to focus upon the darkness of their sins, and the members upon the Marks, before the day of the convention comes, the great and magnificent day.
Act 32:21 And it shall come to pass that some who call upon the name of the Lord shall join gospel churches, and become members.
Act 32:22 "Men of Louisville, hear these words: Our Savior, a man attested to you by many books and CD's available in the lobby, as you yourselves know–
Act 32:23 this Savior, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, God crucified and killed by his sovereign sovereignty.
Act 32:24 God raised him up to prove that the sacrifice had appeased his wrath toward the lucky few, but not toward the not-so-lucky many.
Act 32:25 For The Patriarch David says concerning him, "'I saw the truth of complementarianism always before me, for it is at my right hand that I may not be shaken;
Act 32:26 therefore my heart was full of Christian hedonism, and my tongue quoted headship and submission, and my flesh also will dwell in Louisville.
Act 32:27 For you will not abandon my soul to Gaithersburg or let your humble one hear slanderous gossip.
Act 32:28 You have made known to me the paths of inerrancy, you will make me full of leadership.
Act 32:29 "Brothers, I may say to you with confidence about the patriarch David that he led, provided, and protected, and his family is still with us to this day.
Act 32:30 Being therefore a pastor, and knowing that God had clearly taught in the Bible that he would set out to plant a network or family of churches
Act 32:31 he foresaw and spoke about the resurrection of underappreciated gospel, that it was not abandoned to moderates, nor did its biblicalness see corruption.
Act 32:32 This gospel the savior raised up, and of that we all are witnesses.
Act 32:33 Being therefore exalted at the right hand of Authority, and having received from the Omnipotentate the promise of church discipline, it has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing.
Act 32:34 For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he himself says, "'The Celebrity pastor said to my pastor, Sit at my right hand,
Act 32:35 until I make the enemies of gospel culture your footstool.'
Act 32:36 Let all the house of Kentucky therefore know for certain that The Sovereign has made it both Law and Master, this Gospel which you misunderstood.
Act 32:37 Now when they heard this they were impressed. and said to Dever and the rest of the plenary speakers, "Brothers, what shall we do?"
Act 32:38 And Dever said to them, "Great books and DVDs are available in the exposition hall, and you shall receive helpful illustrations for your sermons.
Act 32:39 For the promise is for some of you and for your helpmeets and sons and for some who are sitting in the pews, everyone whom the Lukewarm Gender Gospel calls to biblical ratatouille.
Act 32:40 And with many other words he bore witness and continued to exhort them, saying, "Be accountable to save your helpmeets, sons, and sheeple from this crooked generation. They can't do it without you!"
Act 32:41 So those who received his word were bought some material and found some neat free stuff as well, and there returned home that day about seven thousand souls.
Act 32:42 And they devoted themselves to the celebrity pastor's teaching and the disfellowshipping, to the excommunicating and the joyfully accepting the sovereign's predestinations.
Act 32:43 And no awe came upon any soul, and no wonders and signs were being done through the anyone.
Act 32:44 And all who believed signed covenants to join local churches and gave their tithes to the pastors.
Act 32:45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to the building fund.
Act 32:46 And day by day, attending the sunday services together and breaking effeminate worship leader's noses in redemption groups, they received a focus on hidden sins in community care,
Act 32:47 praising godly leadership and having sovereign grace with some of the people. And the books and videos added to their number day by day mutton who were being rustled from not-so-gospel flocks.

And Peter, weeping as he stood by the pearly gates, cried aloud and said, "Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit!"
 

Lydia's Corner:  Ezekiel 33:1-34:31   Hebrews 13:1-25   Psalm 115:1-18   Proverbs 27:21-22

Comments

Combatting Muscular Christianity — 257 Comments

  1. We live amongst half-whacks, illiterates (like Mahaney and several associates like the old Shankster and Meister Connolly from Charlotte, NC), and enthusiasts without decorum, deliberation, order, scholarship, education, confessions, liturgy, depth, dignity and thought. This includes the revivalists of Southern Seminary, Al Mohler, and affiliates with Mars 29 and T4G. “Just turn up the music, enthuse, and emote!” Mohler is a nano-second away from the Baptacostalist narcissist Mahaney. Same ilk! Enthusiasts at root and at “base” (“base,” an intended pun).

    Spare us, good LORD, from these American half-whacks and illiterates, enthusiasts and tub-thumping Hillbillies of variant species, now and forever, through the merits and mediation of an intelligent, thoughtful, biblical, and courageous Saviour and Redeemer, Christ Jesus, Amen.”

  2. This totally reminds me of this video from a few years back:

    http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/tue-may-11-2010/god-smacked

    …and to think I thought it was satire.
    Good for Horton for taking on the patriarchal Calvinistas! I am a big fan of Horton, but keep in mind; he is at least a modified complementarian himself: His church belongs to the URCNA, which quite recently split off the CRC over the issue of women’s ordination. IMO, Horton gives an example of traditional gender roles in the church done right.

  3. FYI: there is no real Acts Chapter 32… Wait… There’s no Acts 29 either…

    Best to read Acts 32 with the real Acts 2 and the real 18 Affirmation and Denial articles of T4G to the side.

    T4G Affirmations and Denials

    My reason for writing was that the T4G articles seemed to rob the Gospel of virtually every bit of its real muscularity — for example the forgiveness of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit. It’s my opinion that all the focused-upon secondary issues are filling a vacuum where the primary ones belong.

    Feel free to suggest any improvements or additions. Also if you feel I unfairly took out gospel truth they really did affirm in the articles.

  4. The statement that men resist ‘conformity, control and ceremony’ is complete nonsense. Some men do, and some men don’t. That statement makes it sound as if all women just love conformity and control and have been in a position to impose ceremony on the church (for over a thousand, I guess, since Catholicism is full of ceremony). None of those generalisations is true.

    Dave AA, you’re right. The muscularity of the gospel is grace.

  5. “It’s gotten to the point where I assume that anyone who says that [the church needs to be more 'masculine'] basically just wants permission to be more of a prick than the traditional reading of the Gospels says that they should be (i.e. not at all). The more of this “manly” Christianity I see, the more I’m convinced that it’s just a cover for bad behavior, motivated by a misguided longing for a certain sort of machismo that Jesus neither endorsed nor practiced” – from a secularist’s comment quoted by Wade Burleson.

  6. “In ‘Young, Restless, Reformed’ circles, a new generation is discovering Jonathan Edwards and ‘masculine Christianity’ in one fell swoop…”

    How can Jonathan Edwards and the Macho Gospel coexist, anyway? Jonathan Edwards wore robes and falling bands (big clerical collars) to church. So by Mark Driscoll’s standards, he’s gay. So are all the other Puritan divines they revere, and probably John Calvin (though maybe not because he had an enormous epic beard and had people beheaded). No sense being made here.

  7. 1. He allowed himself to be flogged.
    2. He allowed himself to go down without a fight.
    3. He rebuked Peter when he drew his sword and told him to put it away.
    4. He wept in public with other people to see.
    5. He spent a good part of his life unemployed when he taught and preached.
    6. He was not married, and he was single.
    7. He challenged authority (man I wish he’d pop up in Mars Hill one day… )
    8. He had no problem taking directions from Mary.

    Well said, Eagle, well said.

  8. Dave A A –

    Am I allowed to throw out all of the verses in your chapter of Acts that don’t fit my theology and keep only the ones I like? (Afterall, I have learned this method of study well from those you have written of :)

    If so, I’ll keep the last paragraph.

  9. Monker, the best part of that list is the part about how since Judas was a man, men in general are not fit for ministry. Someone should have pointed that out to Mark Driscoll before he preached that women are more gullible than men because of Eve’s deception.

  10. Bridget2
    Of course in my last paragraph I envision the manly man Peter weeping over this new, improved gospel..

  11. I found this over at goodmenproject.com. Link: http://goodmenproject.com/featured-content/is-there-a-moral-to-john-edwards/. It’s not Jonathan Edwards the theologian, but John Edwards the senator – I’m sure that USA media is full of stories about the trial.

    “My sympathy for John Edwards, or the long list of other men in the public eye who have fallen from grace, is limited. But we do have this unrealistic expectation that our politicians and athletes and movie stars be perfect. They amass power and wealth by whatever means possible and then set about spinning a tale about how they got there that is a fairy tale in order to stay on top. We collectively look for that crack in the armor and, more often than not, we find it. Once opened, the fall from grace is often breathtaking, with revelation after revelation of misdeeds and dishonesty. And each time, we act surprised.

    Most organized religions, Christianity in particular, are premised on the idea that to be human is to be fallible. Christ died for our sins, the Bible tells us. That doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t try to do right, but it does mean we are going to fail as part of life. The most important part is to be honest about it, to learn from our mistakes, and take responsibility. You would never get any of that by reading the 24-hour news cycle that consists mainly of gotcha journalism.

    The moral of the Edwards trial is also the extent to which we collectively are missing the point, sending us off in the direction of our own demise. Men make mistakes. Men who are taught to value their worth by power alone make more mistakes than most. And they lie about it to cover their tracks. This is a very unproductive cycle.

    But it doesn’t have to be that way. What if we spent more time talking about the truth of our lives as men? What if the cult of power and wealth were balanced by a cult of compassion or courage or integrity?”

    What if indeed. Focus on the last line – there is so obviously a cult of power and wealth within the advocates of ‘macho’ Christianity that they’ve spun way off from what manhood really means. Yes, I’m a woman, so some would argue that I don’t really understand, however I’m pretty sure that godly manhood doesn’t involve a lust for violent sports, contempt for the sexual wellbeing of wives, or holding an iron grip over your congregation/family. The problem? They’re forgetting that as men they’re fallible. Femininity is the enemy. Women aren’t perfect either, but these guys are CLEARLY setting up an attitude among young men which can only be described as “boys rule, girls drool”. And by boys, they mean manly men that don’t EVER reveal the truth about their deepest selves. Nawwww, real men punch their problems out…

  12. “The moral of the Edwards trial is also the extent to which we collectively are missing the point, sending us off in the direction of our own demise. Men make mistakes. Men who are taught to value their worth by power alone make more mistakes than most. And they lie about it to cover their tracks. This is a very unproductive cycle.”

    This thinking is pervasive in Christian circles. Men make mistakes? That is what he calls what Edwards did? A “mistake”? A “fall from grace”? What a mockery of truth.

    Edwards premeditated everything. He lied, plotted and deceived for years. A mistake is a typo or spilling one’s milk. Why can’t people bring themselves to call it what it is? Because it sounds “judgemental”?

    Oh, how we all love to dumb down evil to mere mistakes. As if this sort of thing is no big deal. Just admit your “mistake” and poof! You can have integrity!

    “But it doesn’t have to be that way. What if we spent more time talking about the truth of our lives as men? What if the cult of power and wealth were balanced by a cult of compassion or courage or integrity?””

    Integrity? He can start the “integrity” process by admitting it was not a “mistake” but planned and implemented selfish evil spanning several years and throw in a wife dying of cancer.

  13. “Monker, the best part of that list is the part about how since Judas was a man, men in general are not fit for ministry. Someone should have pointed that out to Mark Driscoll before he preached that women are more gullible than men because of Eve’s deception.”

    This has never made sense to me from the bare facts of Genesis. Eve ADMITTED she was deceived. Adam never admitted anything about his own behavior…. but only BLAMED Eve and God.

    So blaming is a better leadership qualification? So God decreed: Men are much better suited to lead women because Adam blamed both me and Eve for his behavior.

    Right.

  14. Anne wrote: “there is so obviously a cult of power and wealth within the advocates of ‘macho’ Christianity that they’ve spun way off from what manhood really means.”

    And how is this, in any way, countercultural? It’s just more of the same, exactly the same stuff that the world has to offer. The “biblical” candy coating just makes it more nauseating.

  15. René: The ‘biblical’ candy coating makes it easier to sell to Christian masses. And too many are gullible enough to swallow it without examining the ingredients. Truth is, the secular world has already cottoned on to the uselessness of enforcing a macho gender role. Yet again the church is fifty years behind.

  16. Dave A A, Acts 32:37-39 (and the judicious use of “some” throughout Acts 32) killed me dead.

    Genius.

  17. Anne

    The name similarity between Jonathan Edwards and John Edwards never occurred to me.

    John Edwards used to live fairly close to Dee and me – within 10 miles.

    We can all learn a lot from Edwards.

  18. “My reason for writing was that the T4G articles seemed to rob the Gospel of virtually every bit of its real muscularity — for example the forgiveness of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit. It’s my opinion that all the focused-upon secondary issues are filling a vacuum where the primary ones belong.

    Feel free to suggest any improvements or additions. Also if you feel I unfairly took out gospel truth they really did affirm in the articles.”

    Dave A. A.,

    Clever satire! I envy the creative edge many of you have!

    With that said, I might be missing something here, but from many of the T4G articles I read (Articles 7-13), I think they affirmed much of the foundational gospel truth. Would you really say articles 7-13 are secondary? Those articles seem pretty foundational and primary to me..

    You mentioned they seemed to rob such things as the “forgiveness of sins.”

    Is not justification just a “big” word that essentially means made right by God—thus forgiven of our sins through the atoning work of Jesus Christ?

    Several of the articles mentioned the latter from what I could see.

    I would agree with you that they did not emphasize the gift of the Holy Spirit—Although they did affirm the Trinity.

    I can’t speak for all T4G speakers (especially those who formed T4G with Duncan, Dever, Mahaney, Mohler–never listened to them that much), but those I have listened too over the years affirm the Holy Spirit’s gift to us and the GIFTS the Spirit gives us. They also affirm quite frequently the forgiveness of sins through Jesus Christ.

    Please remember, Not all those involved with T4G share the same extremes with Driscoll, Mahaney and others…

    I know I always seem to go against the current here, but I am not seeing where they are robbing the muscularity of the Gospel truth. If the Gospel is the good news through the atoning work of Jesus Christ on the Cross, the power through Jesus resurrecton—-I think T4G affirms this…

    I am not seeing where they are affirming a false gospel here, nor do I think they add any of these secondary issues to the gospel as a means for salvation.

    With that said, I do agree with the majority sentiment that they are taking this “masculine” Christianity a bit too far. I don’t really get it, I must confess.. Maybe I am not seeing there conviction when it comes to the Comp doctrine and their belief in the responsibility of men as leaders in the church—but they certainly seem to push the latter a bit too far.

    As I have mentioned before, I have not studied the Comp/Egal doctrine enough to know fully where I stand. I have written down many of the websites and books you all have given me to study, and I will have a bit of time to study those in a few weeks.

    Regardless of where I fall on all this, I certainly think they tend to make the comp/masculine issue more primary than it should be.

    I would also say to you all that ALL those involved in T4G are probablly not in the Driscoll/Fight Church extremes with this mascularity mumbo jumbo—although many of them hold to a comp viewpoint.

    I just can’t see David Platt saying some of that extreme stuff, and he is involved with this group. And as I mentioned before, I had some fellow friends of mine who attended this conference…and I know for a fact they don’t line up with the Driscoll’s extremes.

    Sorry to go against the current again—carry on! :)

  19. “I know for a fact they don’t line up with the Driscoll’s extremes.”

    They just give him their stamp of approval any chance they get.

  20. Seeker, you know how people (including many of the T4G persuasion) are always saying Jesus + anything else = nothing, or The Gospel + anything else = nothing?

    It seems like there is a lot of “anything else” being added on here.

  21. “I know for a fact they don’t line up with the Driscoll’s extremes.”

    They just give him their stamp of approval any chance they get.

    TedS,

    Take another look at what you pulled out of my post..I am referring to my friends here—They don’t give Driscoll their stamp of approval any chance they get. I KNOW that for a fact.

  22. Rene,

    I agree with you. Like I said before, I don’t get it. They have a strong conviction that this Comp doctrine, “masculine” Christianity is crucial to our culture and is important to make a primary issue.

    For whatever reason, they find these things to be crucial to hold too.

    I for one don’t understand, but I am not seeing them adding this to the Gospel itself, yet they tend to promote these things as important by saying comp doctrine is a “picture” of the gospel, etc, etc…

  23. “I know for a fact they don’t line up with the Driscoll’s extremes.”

    They just give him their stamp of approval any chance they get.”

    Exactly Dave. Hmmm. Wonder why the SBC big wigs have partnered with Acts 29 which is Driscoll and Mars Hill all the way? Oh, NOW they are saying they don’t go along with his extremes in a very indirect and subtle way. In fact, it is hilarious how they are trying not to even mention his name. All of a sudden, Akin who was big on Driscoll for years, is writing treatises of sex in marriage and “sorta kinda” dumbing down the idea of sodomy in marriage. Like, oh the book had really good things in it if you can ignore the barrell of arsenic in it.

    Watching how they have parsed the Driscoll relationship has been interesting. What deceivers and charlatans! Even Chandler admitted (he was not thinking!) that Acts 29 is so enmeshed with Mars Hill anhd DRiscoll it is hard to unravel. but the SBC is trying to convince folks his DNA has now magically disappeared from Acts 29. (And he is still on the board and Chandler has no problem with that, either!)

  24. “Take another look at what you pulled out of my post..I am referring to my friends here—They don’t give Driscoll their stamp of approval any chance they get. I KNOW that for a fact”

    That is like saying one does not give Lenin (Driscoll) their stamp of approval but do support Troskey (Chandler).

    It is all really the same foundation. Authoritarianism. Chandler is just nicer about it from stage.

  25. deb –

    Thanks for the excerpts from Horton’s article, and for recommending that people read the whole thing.

    That Fight Church clip – wow. I probably would have thought it was a parody if I hadn’t known beforehand that it’s not.

  26. Anne,

    It really should come as no surprise that this sort of idiocy (fight church) should surface amongst American Evangelicals on the fringe. We Americans are a violent people by nature. We LOVE to fight! It’s in our national DNA and political ethos. It’s also what makes it easy for the hawkish elements of our Congress to drum up support for scattered military adventures abroad and the garrisons necessary to conduct them.

  27. Seeker, I don’t think that many of the T4G crowd would come out and say that complementarianism IS the gospel, or part of the gospel. They are too astute for that and they know they would get hammered for it. But according to the transcript of John Piper at this year’s T4G, to accept anything other than their view of gender roles in the family and church is to be on the precipice of a slippery slope, or to introduce a fatal flaw to the gospel like a recessive gene that will weaken it and maybe kill it. To me it feels like they give with one hand and take away with the other.

  28. For whatever its worth, my spanish-speaking friends taught me that machismo means “false manhood”. They used the term to refer to men like Mark Driscoll and his cohorts.

  29. Eagle,

    It’s nice to be missed. I have been a little busy today. Heard Bill Clinton speak in person at a graduation ceremony. With regard to the world wide web, he said that when he was President, there were 50 websites. Then he quipped, at least 50 websites have probably been established since beginning the speech.

    Dee,

    Got your message. Everything’s great!

  30. Re: Mara Hill Music. First line of their announcement, “Head’s up: we’re starting a record label, and we’re gunning to take over Christian radio.”
    Gunning to take over– gunning to take over?!

  31. “Take another look at what you pulled out of my post..I am referring to my friends here—They don’t give Driscoll their stamp of approval any chance they get. I KNOW that for a fact”

    That is like saying one does not give Lenin (Driscoll) their stamp of approval but do support Troskey (Chandler).

    It is all really the same foundation. Authoritarianism. Chandler is just nicer about it from stage.”

    Anon1,

    Just curious really. You say they share the same foundation in authoritarianism, but be a little more specific for me if you will…

    In what ways is Chandler similar to Driscoll as far as Authoritarianism is concerned?

    Now Driscoll has used authority in some extreme ways with his firing of Elders, etc…I just have never heard Chandler doing these things…

    How has Chandler? You say they share the same foundation….how?

    I don’t support Driscoll for many reasons, but I am not willing to cry foul on Chandler just yet…

    This blog has certainly helped me to think a bit deeper on alot of these people, so I am curious to see what you think…

    Rene,

    I understand what you are saying…Like I said, I think they take these issues a bit too far. They have certain convictions about the comp doctrine in their belief system, and I just don’t share the same one as of now..

  32. “Just curious really. You say they share the same foundation in authoritarianism, but be a little more specific for me if you will…

    In what ways is Chandler similar to Driscoll as far as Authoritarianism is concerned?”

    No thanks. You probably would not believe it or connect the dots anyway. We have been down this road too many times.

  33. Muff – You’re right about our acceptance of violence – from violent actions to violent entertainment to the use of war-related imagery in journalism (TV, in print and on the web).

    I keep hoping that we will “lay down [our] sword and shield” (as in the spiritual “Study War No More”), but if anything, it seems we are heading in the opposite direction.

    The more I think, read and generally ponder, the more I come to the conclusion that we are still very much a frontier culture (and a culture that fetishizes a certain kind of lawlessness/violent attitude in the name of “Americanism” cf. Clint Eastwood’s Westerns).

    It seemed as if this was waning – ever so slightly – in the 90s, but then 9/11 came and we’re now in over our heads. (Not to mention the fact that I think it would be next to impossible for the kind of independent reporting/photojournalism that was part and parcel of the Vietnam era to happen now, especially re. Iraq and Afghanistan.)

    My main point isn’t political, though: it’s that the hawkish responses to 9/11 have led to a social climate in which MD’s, Piper’s (et. al.) “Might Makes Right” ideas have not only been encouraged, but actively embraced, publicized etc. – which has led to proliferation, even pervasive acceptance. (or, at very least, people turning a blind eye – or perhaps not even being aware that these things are taking place.)

    The idea of churches holding unlicensed fights turns my stomach: boxing and other combat sports are licensed in order to prevent the kinds of needless deaths that have been detailed in this blog post.

    It all sickens me, to the point where I feel like I have little to add to this discussion. Having posted my thoughts here in the past, I feel like both my gut and my brain are rebelling against any more contemplation of these perverse interpretations of the Gospels.

    I am more convinced than ever that the god worshiped my MD (etc.) is a not-god – one of their own making, and one that reflects their egos as well as their insecurities.

    Can’t help but wonder if these people ever preach on texts like “A soft answer turneth away wrath”? (That’s Proverbs something-or-other, but am not certain of exact citation.)

    Or more to the point “My kingdom is not of this world; if it were, my servants would fight.” (Violently.)

    Or any/all texts related to the Holy Spirit as Paraclete – the Comforter, the One who guides us into all truth. (Note: doesn’t cajole, drag, force, condemn, vilify, shame, mock etc. etc. etc.)

    * Postscript: I wish whoever wrote the book of Job could do a modern update on Job’s friends, complete with at least one character who comes from the MD/MH mold, and one like Piper. (Sergius, I hope you’re reading this…!)

  34. Note on my last post: when I mentioned reporting and photos, i was thinking about some of the images of violence that came from Vietnam. More specifically, images that proved both its horror and futility, like the photo of the young girl who was being burned alive by napalm dropped by our planes; also the photo of the prisoner being executed by a S. Vietnamese official.

  35. I have to say a few things after watching that Fight Church promo.

    1. I almost pissed myself laughing at the sight of the minister praying over the fighter’s injured testicles. I hope I wasn’t the only immature one who found that just sublimely ridiculous.

    2. I was horrified at the sight of a child being padded up and then going into a ring to fight another child. We do not need young boys to be taught that violence is great. And all of this surrounded by supposed adults (I guess in physical body only) baying for blood – but of course in a Christian and ‘safe’ way, of course! (Yeah right)

    3. That kid says ‘I’m going to go in there and rip this kid’s head off.’ In what fevered mind is this possibly representative of a positive and Christian way to act?

    4. There is little more unattractive than the sight of people standing/sitting around, yelling and shouting and egging on a fight. If my church ever suggested doing anything like this, I’d be running a mile.

    5. When a child is hurting and crying because AN ADULT GOADED HIM INTO FIGHTING ANOTHER CHILD you don’t tell that child that getting beaten up is a good experience.

    6. I just wish these macho jerks would finally get it over with and do what they seem to really want, which is to have one big penis measuring competition to see who has the biggest dick.

  36. I’m a bit late to the party; my weekend has been gloriously eaten up by a family wedding. I watched the groom’s face as the bride was coming down the aisle and was overwhelmed by what I saw there. It was all about love, and the wonder that she, in all her loveliness, should be his. And this is how Christ the Bridegroom looks at us, and this is the mystery that is between man and woman, and between Jesus and His bride. Can we imagine that Jesus, the one who laid down his life for his beloved, ordering her around to prove his machismo? Can we imagine him belittling his bride because, in her femininity, she isn’t into cage fighting? he isn’t seeking to domineer his bride; he’s seeking to raise her up to himself, to even share his throne with her? Why are the preachers of dudey-ness so keen to abandon that kind of glory and wonder, and settle for their petty muscle-flexing instead?

    Dave A A — that was sharply brilliant, and terribly true. Some people have forgotten that the letter kills but the Spirit gives life

    Also — putting children out there to fight? Sounds way too much like the Hunger Games to me, even though they’re not intending them to die. But something dies when you do things like that

  37. Per the video (which I didn’t have time to watch earlier): I can see taking a self-defense class, but this is just ridiculous. They never should have let those 13-year-old boys into the ring. It probably isn’t even legal and they could get in some serious trouble. If more churches start doing stuff like this, it’s only a matter of time before some a church gets destroyed by a lawsuit. Not to mention the fact that Christians shouldn’t be teaching boys to beat each other up for fun – don’t most of them already know how to do that?

    The church (the American church, at least) gets more and more out there every year. First we had XXX Church with their 30-foot-tall, smiling inflatable penis. Now we have Ultimate Fighter/MMA church. What’s next? Christian pole dancing?

  38. When my son was in pre-school we sent him to Karate lessons to learn self defense. The instructor was a bully-boy macho man. At one event, another child started crying. The big tough instructor berated him for crying and sent him to sit down away from the group. My son got up and walked across the room to this child and put his arm around him to comfort him. I believe my little boy showed true courage and “manliness” that day. It was also the last time he attended those classes. :-)

  39. Addendum:

    And what REALLY kills me is that, with all that craziness, the American church walks around acting as though we’re last bastion of “real” Christianity on the entire planet. Cause ya know, there aren’t any Christians in Asia or Africa (except the cute Ugandan children we brought over here to sing), Europe is full of a bunch of sissified girly men, and Australia and South America just don’t exist.

  40. Hester,

    I’m fairly sure Christian pole dancing does exist… Maybe we’ll write about it soon.

  41. “Please remember, Not all those involved with T4G share the same extremes with Driscoll, Mahaney and others…”

    But they share the same platform with him.
    They refer to each other as “My friend.”
    Their church bookstores carry his books.
    They do not repudiate his false teaching or speak out against him.
    By not saying he is wrong they are saying he’s right.

  42. You know, for all their silly pronouncing and posturing and speaking ex cathedra, each one his own pope, I see little getting done in the kingdom by these men.

    I see women, even those in churches that forbid them to preach, quietly preaching to their children, their neighbors, their coworkers, and anyone else God brings across their path. Unpaid.

    While these guys pontificate about men leading their homes as rulers, I see the men running off to the lake or the game and the women quietly shepherding the hurting, the sick, the young, the old, and all those with special needs. Unpaid.

    While these guys speak out against love songs to Jesus, I see the women quietly singing their love of Him as they rock the babies and tend the sick and very old. Unpaid.

    Maybe, just maybe, the church isn’t that business/charitable organization that meets in a certain building under their tutelage.

    Maybe the church is the followers of Christ, male and female, who do the work He gave them out of love for Him.

    And at times, I wonder how long He will allow the travesty to go on.

    Or maybe He has written Ichabod over the door and moved on.

    The Church may be thriving mightily even while the churches are in their death throes.

  43. Linda,

    I thought you were going to say – while the men are going off to conferences.

    Where are the “servant leaders” in this comp crowd?

  44. How can Jonathan Edwards and the Macho Gospel coexist, anyway? Jonathan Edwards wore robes and falling bands (big clerical collars) to church. So by Mark Driscoll’s standards, he’s gay. — Hester

    Simple. The only thing they know about Jonathan Edwards is the only thing I knew about him until a couple years ago: “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.”

    ONE Hellfire-and-Damnation Sermon. Firewalling God’s POWER, Omnipotence, POWER, Masculinity, and POWER. A Macho God Who Can and Will Beat Us All Up.

  45. Deb –

    I’ve heard very few teachings from the gospels over the past 15 years. I think they spend much of their time trying to figure out how to govern the church (and women) instead of doing what Jesus called all of us to do together. It also seems that the Neo Calvinists have spent the last 25 years refuting feminism. It would be hard for any of them to lay waste to a big part of the past 25 years of their lives as misplaced . . . so now they must make what they have taught for 25 years of “major importance” to “their Gospel.” They now teach that their complementarianism is “Good News” for woman without considering God-given gifts, spiritual maturity, illnesses, singles, one parent in the home, etc. What is really odd is that they don’t seem to think these issues have been around for the past 6,000 years. The issues just weren’t called “feminism” and women weren’t demanding equality in the “thinking” world.

  46. Linda @ 11:09 –

    Liked your entire post, especially this:

    “Maybe, just maybe, the church isn’t that business/charitable organization that meets in a certain building under their tutelage.”

    For many church leaders, the diminishing of these organizations (theirs specifically) would shatter their worlds. Sometimes I think it would be a good thing for the church in America if it had to go underground. Right now I think a part if the church here is staying underground because of what has occurred in the institutional church.

  47. Bridget2,

    Agreed! It is incredible how these guys seem to lump everyone who disagrees with their narrow interpretation of scripture into the radical feminist camp.

    It’s a hoot to read some of the ridiculous stories posted over at CBMW.

  48. Hi Seeker
    “I know I always seem to go against the current here, but I am not seeing where they are robbing the muscularity of the Gospel truth. If the Gospel is the good news through the atoning work of Jesus Christ on the Cross, the power through Jesus resurrecton—-I think T4G affirms this…”

    I suppose so, in a way. In other places, and speaking individually, they may do this. But COLLECTIVELY in this particular affirm/deny statement which appears to have been carefully thought out by some really smart guys, including “the smartest man I know”, I’m appalled by how much they leave out. Just one more example: they use the word “gospel” frequently, and we all know that’s GOOD news. But not quite so good, if God is not good. This they nowhere affirm. “We affirm that the Bible reveals God to be infinite in all his perfections, and thus truly omniscient, omnipotent, timeless, and self-existent.” It would only have taken a couple words to throw in “benevolent” or “merciful” or “kind” or “loving”. The love and goodness of God are MIA in the whole piece. I fear they feared those attributes would sound too “feminine”.
    “Not all those involved with T4G share the same extremes with Driscoll, Mahaney and others…” Mahaney, as a founding apostle of T4G, can’t be distanced from it (unless his friends call him to repentance) as they’re trying to do with Driscoll. I threw a Driscoll quote into my English Slandered Version just for fun.
    Speaking of Driscoll, he didn’t actually use the phrase “gunning for” in the YouTube interview of his band leader, where he speaks of the “takeover” Christian music. That was apparently his editorialist’s turn of phrase. Still, this appears to be taking the MMA and punching and going OT stuff to the next level. I pictured a bunch of gangstas bursting into the local Air One studio, guns blazing, announcing “All right, youz guyz, wez iz takin ova diz place! No more o’ doze prom songz fo’ Jezus!”

  49. Bridget2,

    I was listening to some macho minister on Focus on the Family last week. It was the first time I have tuned in in a long time. The guest said something like “Why would anyone not attend church?”

    There were other comments to which I took issue. Maybe I’ll track down the podcast and critique it.

  50. Bridget2 wrote:

    “It also seems that the Neo Calvinists have spent the last 25 years refuting feminism. It would be hard for any of them to lay waste to a big part of the past 25 years of their lives as misplaced . . . so now they must make what they have taught for 25 years of “major importance” to “their Gospel.”

    Yes. That’s the “sunk cost fallacy”. Wenatchee the Hatchet has written about that within a church context.

  51. MM, i bet you were proud of your son! What a brave and kind thing to do.

    My daughter just got her purple belt. Her dojo is really wonderful. Big kids help little kids, everybody cheers for each other. And it’s led by a great woman. :)

  52. Bridget2-

    “I think they spend much of their time trying to figure out how to govern the church (and women) instead of doing what Jesus called all of us to do together.”

    Is this governing of the church male only elders or not? Driscoll tweeted about his “friend pastor Judah” Smiths’s The City Church hosting wof/prosperity preacher Brian Houston this weekend. (They evidently had a conference as well.) Driscoll had gone and “enjoyed an hour with both.” But, City Church has an unbiblical and ungospelly co-lead pastor; Judah’s wife, Pastor Chelsea. Judah’s mother, Pastor Gini Smith, is an elder there as well according to the web site. Is this one of those times where we just go to get the “biblical” wof prosperity teaching from Houston and just forget that Driscoll is promoting a church with female pastors…isn’t that against some A29 comp rule or something?
    http://www.regonline.com/builder/site/?eventid=1069738

  53. @ Deb:

    Come to think of it, I had heard about Christian pole dancing before. I must have blocked the trauma from my memory. : ) That video sure is illuminating. My question is, if this is solely about “fitness” (and I’m not denying you WOULD get in shape doing that kind of exercise), then why is it women only? Couldn’t men get in shape doing “pole fitness”? And why are they wearing high heels? Those aren’t approved fitness wear in any other exercise program.

    So in the Postmodern Church of the Future™, the wife does pole dancing, the husband does Muai Thai kickboxing, and then both apply their knowledge by practicing Mark Driscoll’s “romantic recommendations” and so obtain a great Christ-centered marriage. No Bible needed anymore, I guess. But hey, it goes great with America’s declining literacy rate! ; )

    Also, refresh my memory – Mark Driscoll did mention pole dancing in that infamous SOS “sex sermon” in Scotland, didn’t he?

  54. Rene –
    We could just write it off as “ego” and say “get over yourself.” At the same time, it is a difficult and heart renching thing to experience shaking to that degree in your life. That said, I think many of today’s leaders need such an event in their lives. Or, they can be like Mr. Mahaney and try to keep morphing into something else, somewhere else. I’m praying for a “Paul” experience for them. Sometimes I wonder what Paul would preach in their churches if was even invited.

  55. Bridget2 –

    I’ve had that kind of experience, and it is anything but fun. It really is an ego-destroyer. I understand why these people would want to flee!

    “I’m praying for a “Paul” experience for them. Sometimes I wonder what Paul would preach in their churches if was even invited.”

    Good question. I will pray with you.

  56. Hester

    Great comment! I will plan to write on pole dancing for. Jesus soon. We need to go after our gender, too.

    Those high heels didn’t look like fitness equipment to me. Who do they think they’re kidding?

  57. Hester,

    I’m fairly sure Christian pole dancing does exist… Maybe we’ll write about it soon.
    — Deb

    Oh, it does. It got mentioned in a side comment on Internet Monk some months ago. My initial reactions:

    1) “Just like a Strip Joint, Except CHRISTIAN(TM)!” (Hey, there’s Christianese Cage Fights, why not the other leg of the Macho Man Sex-and-Violence dyad?)

    2) “You Spin Me Right Round Right Round JEESUS Right Round…” (Note: The original Eighties song was about a pole-dancing stripper.)

    3) Well, that’ll pack in the Manly Men (or at least the Horny Men).

    4) Something about Groves of Asherah, Phonecian Goddess of Sex. Groves or Poles?

  58. I have to say a few things after watching that Fight Church promo.

    1. I almost pissed myself laughing at the sight of the minister praying over the fighter’s injured testicles. I hope I wasn’t the only immature one who found that just sublimely ridiculous. — Pam

    Well, to a Real Man (TM) that IS The Most Important Part of the Body…

    And weren’t the testicles and phallus actually worshipped in a LOT of cultures? Hmmmm…. How long a distance between praying over and praying TO?

  59. 5. When a child is hurting and crying because AN ADULT GOADED HIM INTO FIGHTING ANOTHER CHILD you don’t tell that child that getting beaten up is a good experience. — Pam

    It is a good experience if you’re the one on top doing the beating.

    Animal Forced Dominance Display.

    6. I just wish these macho jerks would finally get it over with and do what they seem to really want, which is to have one big penis measuring competition to see who has the biggest dick. — Pam

    Re my last post regarding phallus worship in cultures generally called pagan. Cultus Priapus, anyone?

  60. Just one more example: they use the word “gospel” frequently, and we all know that’s GOOD news. But not quite so good, if God is not good. This they nowhere affirm. “We affirm that the Bible reveals God to be infinite in all his perfections, and thus truly omniscient, omnipotent, timeless, and self-existent.” It would only have taken a couple words to throw in “benevolent” or “merciful” or “kind” or “loving”. The love and goodness of God are MIA in the whole piece. — Dave A A (not to be confused with Titan A E)

    God Omniscient and Omnipotent, i.e. All-POWERful.

    All about God’s POWER, nothing about God’s Nature or Benevolence or Kindness or Mercy. Only POWER.

    A God who is Omnipotent but not Benevolent.

    If they don’t say anything about the latter, they might as well close with “AL’LAH’U AKBAR! AL’LAH’U AKBAR! AL’LAH’U AKBAR!”

  61. So in the Postmodern Church of the Future™, the wife does pole dancing, the husband does Muai Thai kickboxing, and then both apply their knowledge by practicing Mark Driscoll’s “romantic recommendations”…

    As in which end of the digestive tract he sticks it in?

    And will the little woman be tied down when the big man does so to illustrate her God-ordained place?

  62. “No thanks. You probably would not believe it or connect the dots anyway. We have been down this road too many times.”

    Wow..Really?

    Why do you assume I would not believe it or not connect the dots…And no…on this particular subject…we have not been down this road..

    You call Chandler as having the same authoritative issues just like Driscoll,

    But the last time I checked—

    Chandler hasn’t fired Elders like Driscoll…

    And on top of this, there isn’t a “Village Refuge” website like Mars Hill because of authoritarian issues in the Village…Or have I missed that as well?

    There isn’t ANY evidence, as far as I know, to show that Chandler/The Village have had the same type of problems that Driscoll/Mars Hill have committed when it comes to Authoritative problems…..That is what you are implying, is it not?

    All you can come up with is “Chandler just says it nicer from stage.”

    So I ask you to show me evidence…To point me in the right direction…To show me how Chandler and Driscoll share similar authoritative issues…If I am missing something, then I would love to see it…Do you really have some condemning evidence that connects Chandler to Driscoll’s authoritarian problems? Or are you just creating a straw man argument?

    So if you have something, I will ask once again, show me? Or will you continue to dismiss me like you did with your slightly arrogant statement above…

    Sigh…

  63. Dave A. A.,

    You mentioned:

    “I suppose so, in a way. In other places, and speaking individually, they may do this. But COLLECTIVELY in this particular affirm/deny statement which appears to have been carefully thought out by some really smart guys, including “the smartest man I know”, I’m appalled by how much they leave out. Just one more example: they use the word “gospel” frequently, and we all know that’s GOOD news. But not quite so good, if God is not good. This they nowhere affirm. “We affirm that the Bible reveals God to be infinite in all his perfections, and thus truly omniscient, omnipotent, timeless, and self-existent.” It would only have taken a couple words to throw in “benevolent” or “merciful” or “kind” or “loving”. The love and goodness of God are MIA in the whole piece. I fear they feared those attributes would sound too “feminine”.

    You are right…For whatever reason, they left out this important attribute–God’s love.

    Of course, the implication of God’s love is found throughout the majority of their articles when they speak of the Gospel, Jesus sacrifice of sinners, etc….

    It’s hard to speak of the Good News, “God’s gracious acceptance of Sinners”, without understanding God’s love. They DO talk about this, and I am sure if asked, they would point us to that…BUT

    They did not specifically mention God’s love.

    I have a problem with that, as do you…I am not the biggest fan of their “Affirmation/Denial” statement…I think they overemphasize some things (Comp issue) and I think they underemphasize some things (the Love of God)

    Maybe they did this, as you say, because they think it would be too “feminine”…Not sure, but they dropped the ball, as I have said before..

    I can’t speak specifically for Dever, Mahaney, Duncan, and Mohler–they obviously were behind this “Affirmation/Denial” statment..they are ultimately responsible for this, so I really don’t know their “take” on the Love of God.

    But some speakers at that conference–Platt and Chandler–have exhibited time and time again an understanding of the Love of God..I would be surprised if those who attended that conference would not have an understanding of the Love of God as well..

    Yes, most Calvinists emphasize God’s sovereignty, His power, His wrath, and many of His other attributes, but this by no means they ignore His love. I know some do..but not all.

    To me, that is truly refreshing..I think we paint a weak picture of God when we emphasize one attribute over another—Like His love over His Holiness…or His Wrath over His Love…

    We need to emphasize all His attributes…not just one…and I think the T4G statement could have done a better job of that..

  64. “There isn’t ANY evidence, as far as I know, to show that Chandler/The Village have had the same type of problems that Driscoll/Mars Hill have committed when it comes to Authoritative problems…..That is what you are implying, is it not?”

    No. I am simply looking at doctrinal beliefs of the two because doctrine always drives behavior and eventually shows itself in fruit. But in closed authoritarian (elder ruled) systems that takes a lot of time and you need brave people like the Petrys to come forward with documentation. Most won’t. Still, many simply respond that they were not there and cannot judge. That is how strong the celebrity authoritarian hold is on people.

    Chandler has many years of supporting and working with Driscoll. Had he problems with the doctrinal direction and behavior of Driscoll, I would assume as a man of integrity, he would have backed off and not continued to “affirm” him in any way.

    As to evidence,most pew sitters who have had disagreements and been treated badly already know they would never be believed. So it takes someone in the inner circle to come forward. But that is rare. It is like going against Stalin. You are ruined.

    What we believe drives our actions and responses. So, many people believe the guru and his interpretation of scripture for whatever reason. People are drawn to authoritarian systems where the talking head tells them they know best and what to believe. And since the talking heads are affirmed by other talking heads, most people take this as the good housekeeping seal of approval and never look at the false underlying premise of the entire system. Which is built on authoritarianism of some “specially anointed” ones and has nothing to do with the Kingdom.

  65. This stuff is just crazy – and these guys wonder why feminism flourishes…… in reality, they only need to look at themselves.

    I do wonder why Driscoll is a big fan of indie rock, as indie rock tends to be full of beta male front men and not alpha males. It doesn’t fit in with his alpha make profile.

  66. Dave A. A. and Others,

    In response to your satire that includes the “Celebrity” Pastor problem of T4G…

    To be fair…T4G is not blind to the potential problem of “Celebrity” pastors or “Celebrity” conferences…

    I know many of you will dismiss this, call it hypocritical, or something along those lines…and maybe many on that stage are..

    But I found it to be an honest look at this potential problem, and it is encouraging to know that they are not blind to this problem.

    Many of you may find Carl’s statements refreshing.

    For those of you that are interested..The link follows of their breakout session on “Celebrity Pastors”.

    http://t4g.org/media/2012/04/celebrity-pastors-panel-vi/

  67. Seeker

    I have already listened to that breakout session. While I appreciated Carl Trueman’s constructive criticism of celebrity pastors, I am mindful of the fact that he claimed Mahaney was.NOT a colleague when he was appointed to the review panel that declared CJ “fit for ministry”. I believe we adequately demonstrated in a previous post that Trueman’s and Mahaney were indeed friends PRIOR to the review.

    Who do these guys think they’re kidding? Certainly not us here at TWW.

  68. Deb,

    I just read over the previous post you mentioned..I really don’t know much about Trueman or Mahaney’s connection…I first heard of Trueman when I listened to the breakout session earlier..

    At first glance on the things that was written, I don’t think Trueman was as misleading as you think he was in that situation.

    He admitted he had several interactions with him over the years before that panel review…..Maybe that was enough to call him “Pal” or “Friend”..

    It was probablly less of an actual personal friendship and more of an aquaintance between the two..I think Trueman was being honest when he said he has no “personal connection” with him..

    My take on the whole things is they tossed around the word “pal” and “friend” just to make their blog posts look good…

    Regardless of all that, I don’t think Trueman should have been on the panel…He knew Mahaney enough to keep him from being objective as he should have been….

    Anyway,

    I am not sure what all this has to do with the actual breakout session itself?

    Should we just ignore the criticism Trueman mentioned, and the seemingly honest discussion about this problem, just because they all knew each other?

    My point was, I think this conference, with the intention to serve local Pastors, is also aware of the potential problem of Fame that comes with it…At least they are willing to discuss it openly..I see this as a GOOD thing!

  69. Hester – I don’t know if he mentioned pole dancing in that sermon in Scotland but I do know that he mentioned that women should be willing to orally pleasure their husbands all the time in order to win them to Christ. Which to me is a shame because I was planning on attending that church sometime – it’s near where I live and I know for a fact that the pastor preaches about the grace of God in Christ at least now and again, rather than his own opinions on how you should live your life, which is hard to find in a church these days (as this very blog testifies). But then I heard about that infamous Driscoll sermon there and I checked out the church’s website and they don’t appear to have distanced themselves from his comments. In fact it looks like you can still listen to the sermon online. It makes me scared to go there.

  70. Sophie, you can still listen to it? I thought that link was dead and even Driscoll said he decided to have it pulled. All that’s left of the actual sermon are selections transcribed from the sermon. The sermon itself has been difficult to find in its entirety since it seems to have been pulled. If you can find the actual whole sermon (audio, not transcripts) post something here.

  71. In his Confessions of a Reformission Rev, Mark Driscoll wrote:

    “I assumed the students and singles were all pretty horny, so I went out on a limb and preached through the Song of Solomon in the fall. I printed up a nice lengthy introduction to the book, with a lot of information about sex and marriage… Each week, I extolled the virtues of marriage, foreplay, oral sex, sacred stripping and sex outdoors, just as the book teaches, because all Scripture is indeed profitable. I was frank but not crass and did not back away from any of the tough issues regarding sex and pleasure. This helped us a lot because apparently a pastor using words like “penis” and “oral sex” is unusual; and before you could say “aluminum pole in the bedroom”, attendance began to climb steadily to more than two hundred people a week.” (Confessions, pp. 94, 96)

  72. I have no desire to listen to Trueman lecture, speak, or preach about anything. He is arguably the most passive-aggressive persona in those circles. Every article he writes smacks of hypocrisy, including the aforementioned panel discussion. He wants to criticize celebrity? He sure uses it to push his books and he loves to throw his name around when it comes to getting professors fired. I know the backstory of the Westminster saga with Pete Enns. Let’s just say that he and Mahaney have quite a bit in common.

  73. Seeker

    I agree with your opinion that Trueman’s should not have been on that review panel.

    Lo and behold, he’s selected to assess Mahaney and other ‘celebrity pastors.’ It just looks silly to me.

  74. Deb,

    I think it was silly that he was on Mahaney’s “objective” panel when that happened…I don’t necessarily think it was silly he was on this panel..He was asked to share his position and opinion towards celebrity pastors, and I think his criticism had some valid points…

    If Mahaney was trying to find someone to defend his “celebrity” Conference with his “celebrity” pastors, I think he picked the wrong guy in Trueman…Regardless of their association, Trueman didn’t really back down on his criticism towards the whole thing…

    In reference to what Scott said, I don’t know anything about him or what he has done, he very well may be hypocritical in his criticism..
    In regards to the other panel speakers, I think Platt’s and Chandler’s response was pretty honest…Hard to tell from an audio recording, but they didn’t come across as “fake”. In reality, I do not envy the position they are in..I can understand why Chan made the move he did…

    I do think Mahaney sounded a bit fake in some of the things he said, but maybe it is just the way he sounds when he talks..

  75. In addition, it seemed to me that Duncan and Anyabwile went out of their way to emphasize “honoring” pastors who “have a wider influence”, as a conscious effort to balance out Trueman’s points.

  76. You may be right regarding Chandler. He says many things that frustrate me, although that’s a more recent phenomenon. There’s a tangible difference between the Chandler we see today and the one before he started running with the T4G crowd.

  77. “You may be right regarding Chandler. He says many things that frustrate me, although that’s a more recent phenomenon. There’s a tangible difference between the Chandler we see today and the one before he started running with the T4G crowd.”

    I agree with you. And agree with you concerning Truman. Bizarre considering his public housekeeping seal of approval for Mahaney even befoe AoR started their process.

    Scot McKnight did a decent review of Chandler’s book. This book is just the same basic regurgitated stuff of other Reformed up and comers in their books.

  78. Amazing how many people do not connect dots. Trueman exonerates a “celebrity” publicly who has a rap sheet a mile long on spiritual abuse before the matter is investigated by the so called professional mediators we all know are coming. Now he is speaking on celebrity? Does anyone else find this incongruous?

  79. Anon 1 –

    I do :)

    CJ’s “non-pals” have all stuck their heads (including their brains) in the sand. They remind me of the three monkeys who see no, hear no, speak no evil. There are about three sets of the monkeys though.

  80. “No. I am simply looking at doctrinal beliefs of the two because doctrine always drives behavior and eventually shows itself in fruit. But in closed authoritarian (elder ruled) systems that takes a lot of time and you need brave people like the Petrys to come forward with documentation. Most won’t. Still, many simply respond that they were not there and cannot judge. That is how strong the celebrity authoritarian hold is on people.”

    Anon1,

    Thanks for responding..I took a long hard look at it, and I see where you are coming from…

    If the “similar” doctrine you are referring to is simply Calvinism, Comp viewpoint, and Elder leadership in their churches…How exactly will that lead to Authoritarian issues that Driscoll has exhibited?

    MANY hold the same doctrinal beliefs they hold, and they by no means have exhibited the “fruit” that Driscoll has exhibited..To say otherwise is quite a notion…

    As far as the similarity of having Elders in the churches: I think the Village takes quite a different approach to their leadership and Elders than Mars Hill..

    As far as I can tell, the Village does not have an “executive team” of Elders who are over the other Elders…Wasnt this one of the things that Petry was uncomfortable with?

    Take a look at the Village leadership:

    http://www.thevillagechurch.net/flower-mound/about-us/who-we-are/our-staff/

    As opposed to Mars Hill’s page on leadership:

    http://marshill.com/leadership#elders

    At first glance, the Village has a variety of Elders who, for the most part, are varied in age. No mention of an Elder executive team like Mars Hill.. Chandler has said time and time again those men keep him accountable…

    I see no reason NOT to believe him…Some of the older guys who have been Elders at the Village since Chandler arrived were attending the Village long before Chandler got there…Chandler himself mentioned some of those guys disagreed with him on several occasions…and Chandler did not “pull a Driscoll” and fire them…He allowed the accountability, disagreements, etc..

    I get what your saying about the “closed authoritative” issues…but I am wondering if the Village’s leadership is as closed as you assume they are.

    Chandler has made several statements over the years of the Elders staying transparent with the Congregation…Especially on decisions such as new Elders, etc… There seems to be a system of clarity at the Village based on what I have heard.

    “Chandler has many years of supporting and working with Driscoll. Had he problems with the doctrinal direction and behavior of Driscoll, I would assume as a man of integrity, he would have backed off and not continued to “affirm” him in any way.”

    I agree…his public silence on Driscoll and his further affirmation of Driscoll on certain occasions bothers me…but his public silence certainly does not mean he is “ok” with Driscoll’s doctrinal direction or his behavior..it may just mean he is approaching it quite differently than we would like him too..

    “As to evidence, most pew sitters who have had disagreements and been treated badly already know they would never be believed. So it takes someone in the inner circle to come forward. But that is rare. It is like going against Stalin. You are ruined.”

    I know it takes tremendous courage to speak out, especially if you are a pew sitter…but we are in the age of the internet…One could come on this blog, or many others, and simply give an anonymous report on what happened at the Village if some serious issues have occurred..

    Especially since the problems at Mars Hill have come to light..

    I am sure many would discount them, but many would. They would find support on this blog and others…

    You are essentially claiming these problems are yet to be revealed, and may have already happened…

    But lack of any revelation may just mean there have been NO serious issues involved at the Village like there has been at Mars Hill..No news can sometimes mean good news!

    Time will tell..You may be absolutely right..and when those reports start surfacing…I will start singing a different tune..

    “What we believe drives our actions and responses. So, many people believe the guru and his interpretation of scripture for whatever reason. People are drawn to authoritarian systems where the talking head tells them they know best and what to believe. And since the talking heads are affirmed by other talking heads, most people take this as the good housekeeping seal of approval and never look at the false underlying premise of the entire system. Which is built on authoritarianism of some “specially anointed” ones and has nothing to do with the Kingdom.”

    Chandler is a leader at the Village.. One among many.. He is not “THE” leader, and he admits this time and time again..

    He has also, time and time again, honored the so called “sheep” and “pewsitters” in his church for their own unique gifts, annointing, and service they give for the Kingdom as well..I could link those sermons later if you like…

    He may have a different interpretation on what it means to be an Elder…or what it means for someone to be “under” an Elder…Many have different interpretations of those things..

    The key is how you treat those that you lead…and I am not seeing Chandler “lording over” those he leads–nor am I seeing him abusing those he leads.

    If Doctrine is truly the culprit here, then you might as well say Platt is a “nicer” Driscoll..

    If this was a few years back, you would probablly say Chan is a “nicer Driscoll” as well because he shares similar doctrine with Driscoll and he was part of an Elder led church..

    I understand why you are saying this, but at this time I cant, with good conscience, agree with what you are saying…

    Driscoll and Chandler to me, regardless of their association, similar doctrine, etc—are miles a part in their behavior and how they handle leadership in their churches.

    Until I see some STRONG evidence to prove otherwise, I will have to simply disagree..

  81. Seeker, we are simply not going to agree on connecting dots. In your scenario it takes men who remain holy and humble in the face of long term celebrity. That is so rare…. I cannot tell you. They keep the same stage persona the whole time, though. People really do think they know the talking heads. People are so naive they will believe anything.

    I have noticed a big change in Chandler’s demeanor in the last 5 years. And it is not better. I thought the tumor would make him more contented and focused as a shepherd, but he is all over the place and cannot get enough of the big time with the celebs.

    You need to know that I have no need to “prove” anything to you. We are all free. You are on a blog that discusses things like this and what we have experienced, seen first hand back stages, and what some of us see are parallels to what other celebs have done.

    Chandler has “affirmed” Driscoll for a long time now even knowing what we have all known because it has been public– his actions and teaching have been public for years. He has been a time bomb waiting to go off for a long time. Many others have affirmed him, too. To me, that means they have NO credibility at all. I question their integrity and biblical wisdom concerning their long time affirmation of Driscoll. I have no need to provide you proof because I have seen the “proof” for years. And remember, Chandler did not just “affirm” Driscoll, he was on the front line with Acts 29 for years. They all knew about the Petry’s and others years ago. It has not been a big secret. They affirmed Driscoll going from 40 voting elders to 3 when the church tripled giving Driscoll full power. And that power was translated to Acts 29 since it was all Mars Hill. I am not sure how much naivete it takes to ignore that fact. Chandler agreed with all of this. I do wonder if he agrees with the sodomy. See, he has never rebuked Driscoll publicly for teaching it, so I have to assume he agrees. He has affirmed everything else.

    If you don’t think we have the right to say all this then there is not much you can do about it. Some, like Mahaney and others, try to call it sin or gossip. It is in their interest to try and make folks believe such discussions of public celebrities words and actions are gossip and sin. It really is amusing when you take the time to think about it. They are not to be questioned in a way they don’t like. How convenient. Guess it is that special anointing.

    Tell you what, ask your friends who attend the Village to request a detailed budget for the whole operation including sat campi and see what happens. I have yet to find an elder ruled mega that would make one in detail available to members. I would be pleasantly surprised if the Village did. But make sure it is detailed and ask an accountant to go over it if not sure.

  82. “Do they think people are stupid? Do they think people are that naive? This blows my mind….”.

    I hate to tell you this but they do think that. Why? Because so many are or they would not have all the followers they have. It ought to scare you concerning the future of our country that so many are so naive.

    Ask your grandparents or parents (people over 50) who the “Christian celebrities” were of their time. They might name one of two. Then ask the “in” Christian singing groups. What Christian books did they have bookshelves stocked? Did their pastor attend 4-5 conferences put on by the celebs every year? Perhaps their pastor wrote books? Had a separate non profit “ministry” he did on the side with lots of speaking engagements?

    Christianity has become a cult of personality just like a mini version of Hollywood with a plastic fish slapped on it. Guru’s have their groupies and everyone wants a piece of the Christian niche market pie with speaking gigs, conference income, book deals, para church ministries, etc. I used to get chills hearing these guys in meetings talking about their “brand”. Their names are “brands”. They are “brands”. It is sick.

  83. Eagle

    “Do they think people are stupid? Do they think people are that naive?”

    They depend on that!

  84. Eagle: Yes, I think they do. Remember when Al Mohler told such guys that without pastors, God’s people will fall into ignorance and leave the faith?

    These pastors hold such a high opinion of themselves that they can barely imagine anyone else reading the Bible more ‘correctly’ than they do, even if they read it and act it out really really badly (of course, they don’t believe that they do such things).

    Pharisees, Eagle. Pharisees. >_<

  85. I have not listened to the T4G stuff about celebrity pastors. Whatever they said, I know how they really feel about it by seeing their ad for T4G, with all the RBD standing in a row, smiling and laughing. Used to be that a list of names was enough; not anymore.

    I’ll know they’re serious when they stop churning out books on a regular basis. How many are worth the paper they’re printed on? How many are written just to fulfill a contract? And, mainly, of course, to make some dough.

    Despite Trueman’s hypocrisy about celebrity pastors, he at least knows how to write, and he’s witty and knowledgeable.

  86. Sophie,

    Isn’t it incredible what we can now find out about high-profile churches before ever stepping foot in the door?

    Sounds like your discernment meter is going off!

  87. Eagle: ‘The thing I find sick is how these pastors “know” the Bible but go on acting as if people don’t know or can’t hold them accountable.’

    Yep, you picked on the bald guy.
    I pick on the dude in Seattle.
    The very, very first time I saw him preach via video and his Peasant Princess series, I was appalled at his handling of the text and arrogance concerning the ‘truth’ of his private interpretation. But is was a house of cards, easily disproven. Yet nobody wanted to disprove it. They liked what MD made SoS say.

  88. Okay, looked it up – he mentioned stripteases, not pole dancing. Not that that makes it any better. Somebody probably did put a pole in their bedroom because of what he said, since stripteases and poles are so closely associated in our culture.

  89. Wasn’t going to say anything about this, but JeffB’s recent comment reminded me of the T4G promotional photo with the football team motif (all the superstar pastors standing in a line holding football jerseys with their last names printed on the back). May seem like a small thing, but that promo bothered me since the first time I first saw it. Seems like an awfully odd choice for an organization that is trying to downplay the notion of celebrity pastorhood.

    We were even thinking of doing a Steam Tunnel piece using that photo, in which we reveal that in the team’s first “exhibition game,” they were defeated 35-0 by a random group of indiviuals with bibles, and that, quite embarrassingly for them, the group even included some women.

    Hmmm. Maybe it’s not too late.

  90. Sergius,

    I had the same reaction. They had a video of “the game” which appears to have been removed from the T4G website.

    These guys are playing a game as far as I’m concerned.

  91. If anyone wants to see what Eagle is talking about, just go over to the Sovereign Grace Ministries website and check out all the upcoming conferences.

    It’s just business as usual…

    With regard to the Mahaney enterprise, I am reminded of the saying:

    Fool me once, shame on YOU. Fool me twice, shame on ME!

    Don’t get fooled, folks. If you do, we’ll respond with “We told you so…”

  92. I think of what President Bush once said… Fool me once… Uh… can’t get fooled again…

    Heh, just kidding ;-) (not a Bush hater!)

  93. Deb –

    Did you delve further than the front page at the SGM site? When you go the the their T4G page you find all of CJ’s teachings front and center. When you go to TGC Women’s Conference page the only item on the page is what Carolyn Mahaney is teaching on. You’d think they might promote some of the other speakers to their churches and not just CJ and Carolyn.

  94. Conferences, Christian celebrities, etc.: iirc, there was a LOT of that back in the 70s and 80s as well. (And yes, I’m over 50…)

  95. Amen! Headless Unicorn guy. “Sinners in the Hand of an Angry God” is the only sermon by Edwards they know and it’s his least typical sermon. I’m researching a scholarly article on Edwards. They should try Edwards “On Religious Affections” proving Edwards believed that love and emotions of an important role to play in Christian Spiritual Development. As a retired seminary professor of spirituality and church history, I wish some of these folks would take the time to read some of these people that they drag in my the ears, kicking and screaming, to support their wackoo misleading ideas.

  96. “Wives and husbands work out roles and responsibilities together, in a variety of ways. There is no template. I have never seen what Russell Moore is advocating — a “defined pattern” of assigned roles that comes from the Bible.”

    I studied German at school. It got tiresome trying to figure out whether a pencil was masculine, or why a tabe was feminine (actually not sure if those designations are correct, but whatever). How much more tiresome if we lived as Russell Moore is advocating.

  97. “Conferences, Christian celebrities, etc.: iirc, there was a LOT of that back in the 70s and 80s as well. (And yes, I’m over 50…)”

    Really? Books, too? Your pastor had a parachurch ministry in addition to his church duties and spent a lot of time out on speaking gigs? He considered himself a “brand”?

    Wonder what a mega church was in 1960? 600? A 1000?

    The whole Christian niche market with mega’s, masses of gurus started in the late 70’s and really took off in the early 80’s. the precursor was things like the jesus movement, calvary chapel, etc, etc.

  98. Sophie’s comment reminds me again of that German muscular male “leader” who had the defined pattern of assigned roles down pat.
    “Woman’s world is her husband, her family, her children and her home. We do not find it right when she presses into the world of men.”. Der Fuehrer

  99. For more fun, do a blue letter bible search for “fathers” “women” and “children” together. Any verse found should help patriarchalists prove father-rule and defined bible roles for each of these groups. The one and only resulting verse indeed illustrates a defined pattern of assigned roles in families working together harmoniously.
    Jer 7:18 The children gather wood, the fathers light the fire, and the women knead the dough and make cakes of bread for the Queen of Heaven. They pour out drink offerings to other gods to provoke me to anger.
    (Thanks to HUG for the Groves of Asherah reference earlier.)

  100. Thinking of Germans and Asherah “Poles” reminds me of the Gleiwitz incident fabricated by der muscular leader to begin WW2.

    “The ‘take over of a German broadcast by Poles’ was being reported by German radio by 10.30 pm and by the BBC the same evening, and featured in the New York Times the next day. Hitler referred to ‘three serious border incidents’ in his speech to the Reichstag on the 1st September announcing the war.”

    Hmmm…. Similarities to the Mars (god of war) Hill record label “gunning to take over” Christian radio?

  101. DISCLAIMER: The following is quite long, forgive me.

    Anon1,

    “Seeker, we are simply not going to agree on connecting dots”

    I fear that you are right. I respect you as my brother (or sister?) in Christ, but we certainly could not be farther apart on your “dot connecting.”

    “People are so naive they will believe anything.”

    Yep…and sometimes people are so cynical that they draw conclusions/parallels and write people off with little to no evidence…

    I don’t claim to know the “talking heads” anymore than you do. I just don’t sense Chandler has the same authoritarian problems that Driscoll has…I don’t sense Chandler is all about the “big celebs” as you say…

    Of course, I don’t view conferences and writing books as the cornerstone of all greed and evil like you and others do on here (sorry, that was a tad bit sarcastic)..…so we probably will never see the same thing with this.

    Bottom Line: I can’t verify his motives or intentions, and as far as I am concerned, neither can you…That is why I am looking for evidence to show that his intentions/motives are off. That is why I asked you in the first place to show me where he has had authoritarian issues on the scale of Driscoll…and all you could really tell me is “it hasn’t come out yet.” Innocent until proven guilty you know…and I am not seeing the guilt…

    “I have noticed a big change in Chandler’s demeanor in the last 5 years. And it is not better. I thought the tumor would make him more contented and focused as a shepherd, but he is all over the place and cannot get enough of the big time with the celebs”

    What big change are you referring too? Conferences are really nothing new for him…Before Chandler even became a Pastor at the Village, he worked in itinerant ministry working out of Dallas….He spoke in various places and in various engagements…it doesn’t seem so odd to me that this has continued.

    His influence is wider now…that is the truth, but I don’t automatically equate that as evil or that Chandler is now someone who gets “high” of off that influence…Nor do I see him as some control freak authoritarian…It is a bit unfair to paint him as all about these conferences anyway…He also is FOR the Village…To deny that is ignorance at best…

    And by the way, have you ever considered that his tumor showed him how short life was? I have seen that in my own father…and like my father, I believe Chandler knows how important it is NOT to waste the time given to us when God heals in those situations.

    I know you dismiss what he has done and criticise his actions: But, I see Chandler as using his influence for the sake of the Gospel around the world..Like all of us should be doing….His influence just happens to be wider. As far as the Village..well, they seem to be doing just fine..They have other leaders available when Chandler is not there…The Village is bigger than Chandler..you should know this..and as I said before..Chandler is FOR the Village and is available quite often!

    “You need to know that I have no need to “prove” anything to you. We are all free. You are on a blog that discusses things like this and what we have experienced, seen first hand back stages, and what some of us see are parallels to what other celebs have done.”

    I know this..I simply asked for evidence…Not demanded it.. However, if you want me to take your parallels seriously (and obviously you want me to take note of your parallels since you commented on what I said in the first place) then I think it is appropriate to ask for some evidence to validate your parallels for the sake of discussion. If you don’t, that is fine, it is just helpful to me to better understand where you are coming from.

    “Chandler has “affirmed” Driscoll for a long time now even knowing what we have all known because it has been public– his actions and teaching have been public for years. He has been a time bomb waiting to go off for a long time. Many others have affirmed him, too. To me, that means they have NO credibility at all. I question their integrity and biblical wisdom concerning their long time affirmation of Driscoll. I have no need to provide you proof because I have seen the “proof” for years.”

    IMO, this is the only legitimate complaint that I can agree with, and maybe this is all you need to dismiss the credibility of Chandler and others…So basically, Chandler’s PUBLIC silence over Driscoll is your “proof” that Chandler is a man lacking in integrity and credibility. I have confessed before, his public silence bothers me, but this by no means shows me he has been ok with everything Driscoll has done. I know you think otherwise, and that is fine.

    “I am not sure how much naivete it takes to ignore that fact. Chandler agreed with all of this. I do wonder if he agrees with the sodomy. See, he has never rebuked Driscoll publicly for teaching it, so I have to assume he agrees. He has affirmed everything else.”

    Is there an actual link that shows Chandler publicly affirming what Driscoll did with the Petrys….Is there a link that shows he publicly affirms what Driscoll did with taking 40 voting Elders down to 3 (And I am curious to think how much influence Chandler has over that decision)…or is all this another assumption of yours because he was publicly silent?

    Public Silence does not always equal Acceptance. Chandler very well could have handled this privately with his friend rather than publicly call him to the floor…

    Again, I don’t like how he handled this…Public Transparency in this matter would be better imo..but they chose to handle it differently. A bit too political? Yep…It raises some questions…and raises some concern about his motives/intentions, but I am not willing to dismiss ALL his credibility for this.

    I know you may not see it, but I believe Chandler has contributed to the Kingdom of God in some legitimate ways. Even in the things you consider “shameful”…

    In all the conferences he has spoken at..It has been his goal to lift up the name of Christ, to share the good news of the Gospel, to encourage those in the ministry, students, etc, etc…

    You may deny that God is in that, but I don’t. I have stated on here before how God has used these types of conferences for me and many others….I believe God is in it, just as He is in other aspects of the Church.

    I know you look at these things with disdain..So be it…but I would not be so quick to call something “uncommon” that God might call clean. That is just my opinion of course…You are free to think whatever you like…

    About the books….I haven’t read his book he wrote, but from the reviews I saw, it seems like he does a good job of lifting up the good news of Jesus, and Jesus Himself…But I guess that is evil too because of book sales. LOL…Really? Sorry, I just don’t see Chandler’s motive in this to rake in the gold, prestige, etc… as much as you want to claim that.

    And then there is the Village…They seem to be pretty happy with their Pastor…I haven’t heard complaints, or “refuge” websites pop up as of yet in relation to the Village…They are doing some awesome ministries around Dallas and the world. That is not all about Chandler of course, but Chandler is a leader of leaders in that church, and I don’t see Chandler “leading” the church in a negative direction.

    I could go on and on…and frankly, I know it won’t change much of what you think.

    “If you don’t think we have the right to say all this then there is not much you can do about it.”

    When have I said you don’t have the right to say all this? Sorry if I implied that. It is definitely your right to do whatever and say whatever you want…I certainly can’t stop you..I don’t even know you aside from your words on a screen…BUT

    I also have the right to not agree with what you say. Maybe one day I will, when stronger evidence will come out against Chandler..Maybe you have had more experiences with these things than I ever had, and maybe your predictions and parallels about Chandler will prove to be true based on those experiences..

    It is true, I haven’t been burned by these groups like many in this community here..I have had quite a different experience than many of you…You see it as me being naive…I just think I am little less cynical than you..I don’t consider myself a “blind” sheep when it comes to these matters…I am paying attention, and it is not going to “destroy” me if Chandler’s fruit shows to be false. As of now…that hasn’t happened…

    The truth is, I love and depend on many others in the Kingdom of God…people that I know personally, that I can hang out with, pray with in person, and can hold me accountable in person.

    These people are blessings to me that I will never trade…They are those people who I depend on…And above all, I depend on Jesus in my faith…He is the center of my faith…no man can ever replace that!

    Guess what, many of these other men (and women) who go to these conferences, listen to Chandler and others, read these books: they have a similar perspective…They are not part of this “gloom and doom” scenario that you and others want to paint in regards to the next generation, etc…They are not as blind as you think they are…I know some are, but not all.

    Like me, they HAVE been blessed by Chandlers and others teaching, through podcast, conferences, maybe even blessed by being a part of their community. They are just as part of the Kingdom of God as those people I know personally…I don’t want to be a Chandler clone or Platt clone….and one day, if you all have to tell me “I told you so”…my life will not come to an end. I will not be lost. I will not abandon the faith. I will not leave the church…I will not be devastated…Why? Jesus is bigger than any man, and He will not fail me..

    I guess the reason I am so insistent to voice my opinion on here, is because I see a portrait painted all too often that takes the broad strokes of Driscoll’s/Mahaney’s extremes into others such as Chandler/Platt. It becomes one big “generality”, and in the process, “brushes over” some of the valuable things these people have contributed to the Kingdom.

    I know the classic response on here is that adulating fans are all over the place..that this is a “wee little blog” compared to that…so on and so forth.

    Bottom line—from my point of view—the picture painted at times in various comments is not a fair one. From the beginning, I intended to comment to simply remind or point out to you the valuable strokes you may have missed, and to urge you to be careful not to paint certain strokes where the evidence is limited.

    I do this because I love the Church just as much as you do, and I consider it important to give credit where credit is due, and to speak out against generalizations when they are lacking…whether this is a “wee little blog” or not.

    In all my attempts, I feel I could have used my time more wisely to speak to a wall, and honestly, that is ok. I am at peace with where I stand on this. And it is OK that you don’t land where I land in all of this.

    I truly hurt for so many of you that have gotten burned in the past. I hurt for those of you who have experienced abuse at the hands of so many leaders in the church. I hurt that it has caused many of you to become cynical when it comes to certain elements within the Church…I am not in your shoes, so I can’t fully understand why you draw certain parallels or why you feel the way you do..

    Many of your critiques are valid and have substance, some I struggle to agree with. This is why I ask for stronger evidence to validate your parallels, but in your perspective, your parallels are validated just fine as they stand.

    Maybe one day I will stop being “naïve” and “see the light” as you all have…If that happens, then that will be a sad day, because that would mean people like Chandler and Platt have finally gone off the deep end like Driscoll/Mahaney. I don’t wish this on them, I hope that in spite of the “celebrity” system, these guys will not fall victim to this. I am hoping they truly make much of Jesus in their ministry in the Church as a whole…whether in their local community or the influence that has been given to them.

    If they ever go off the deep end, I will remember your words. That is one thing I can say about this community, you have caused me look deeper, and your words will not leave me so quickly.

    “Tell you what, ask your friends who attend the Village to request a detailed budget for the whole operation including sat campi and see what happens. I have yet to find an elder ruled mega that would make one in detail available to members. I would be pleasantly surprised if the Village did. But make sure it is detailed and ask an accountant to go over it if not sure.”

    If I had friends at the Village, I would ask them. Since I do not..the following will have to suffice…This may not be what you are looking for, but they do include audited statements in the last 3 months, and from a few years ago….Of course, this may not meet your “detailed” expectations.

    http://www.thevillagechurch.net/flower-mound/about-us/who-we-are/finances/

    And since you are already visiting the website, might as well take a look at some of their stories of life change….Just to see a different side of the painting.. :)

    http://www.thevillagechurch.net/flower-mound/about-us/stories-of-life-change/written-testimonies/

    http://www.thevillagechurch.net/flower-mound/about-us/stories-of-life-change/video-testimonies/

  102. Bridget2,

    I did notice the promotion of CJ and Carolyn. After all, it’s THEIR MINISTRY, right?

    Did you notice that no more comments are allowed ANYWHERE on the SGM website? Oh yeah, you can send an e-mail…

  103. Seeker,

    Your defense of Matt Chandler and the Village Church is quite admirable. Personally, I’m playing the WAIT AND SEE game. You can be sure that we will be monitoring what is going on, especially in the Acts 29 Network.

    I’m really looking forward to this year’s Annual Meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention. I can hardly wait to hear what the messengers say about Mark Driscoll and most likely Matt Chandler. WOW, it’s a little over a month away! Our readers likely know that we’ll be keeping them informed of the business proceedings.

  104. Deb,

    I am curious to see where Acts 29 will head now as well, and what the SBC will have to say about Driscoll and Chandler. Will you or Dee be present there?

    I have not been to an SBC Annual Meeting in several years..This year should prove to be quite interesting I am imagining.

    I am watching what will happen with Chandler as well..I am under no illusion to think Chandler is beyond the temptation he himself says he could fall prey too..

    I just hope his path will turn out quite differently than the “blow job dude”….(That one made me laugh Eagle)

  105. I would LOVE to attend the SBC Annual Meeting, but I have no plans to go. Last year I watched most of it LIVE, and I plan to do the same this year. Two years ago someone was rapping their approval of Mark Driscoll. I’m not anticipating that this year.

    I sincerely hope you are right about Matt Chandler, but I am concerned about his associations with the Calvinista crowd.

  106. My prediction for Acts 29: some outrage will push Chandler to express more disagreement with Driscoll than he has to date, which will get him ousted from presidency and board. Think something similar to Josh Harris and Sovereign Grace. Speaking of which, I noticed Andrew Mahr was taken off the website after 1-30-12 with no explanation.

  107. Dave A A

    Andrew Mahr appeared to be the moderator of comments. Do you know when comments were no longer allowed on the SGM website?

  108. The A29 board seems to be back to 1/3 MH and 2/3 not MH. Having A29 central moved to TX will reduce the presence of MH in central staff. If 80% of the funding for Acts 29 still comes from Mars Hill, though, and Driscoll is still on the board the SBC will have legitimate reason to be concerned about a heavy influence. Now if MH leaders ever had the stones to admit they are and want to be a denomination then Acts 29 could be cheerfully acknowledged as a puppet entity of Mars Hill but the thing is Driscoll and the other elders at the top seem to be in complete denial about being a denomination. How can Acts 29 be an interdenominational network if it’s been dominated by a raging closet case denomination the way Mars Hill seems to be one? If Mars Hill executive leadership would just come out of the closet about being a denomination that alone might help the MH image and make it easier for A29 to be seen as interdenominational all in one go. :-)

  109. I absolutely cannot wait to read more about Piper’s statement that women can go to the bathroom without asking our husbands’ permission. That little blurb has given me a hearty laugh for the day.

  110. Deb: I don’t know if comments disappeared at exactly the same time, but blog postings switched from a person, Andrew, who I think was Communications Director, to the impersonal “SGM Staff” and this change coincided with CJ’s return to active duty. Of course in the back of my mind is, “Uh oh, he got degifted!”

  111. Dave A A –
    Andrew being taken off the SGM site was near the time when there was discussion by SGM of staff cuts (it was so sadly necessary according to SGM.) This was also near the time when SGM said they would no longer be taking comments. I don’t know anything about Andrew’s situation or why he is no longer mentioned. He was in a difficult situation. It is sad that they have not thanked or honored the people who worked with them that they may have let go. Maybe only apostles are honored for their labors. I interacted with Andew several times via email. He seemed pleasant, even though it appeared that be was well coached on how/what to respond. No explanation for the commoners disappearing is a frequent happening at SGM.

    Deb –
    The T4G page at SGM is changed from earlier today.

  112. Bridget2 – Dee tweeted it earlier today: “Did this really need to b said? John Piper says a woman does not have 2 ask her husband’s permission 2 go 2 the bathroom. See TWW later 2day” I can’t wait to read it, either!

  113. Moniker –

    Thanks for that information. I can go pee now with no worries :). What a relief to know that!!!

  114. Bridget2,

    I saw it before it changed, and I did make a mental note of it.

    Look at it this way – the true believers in SGM are so grateful that C.J. and Carolyn are “serving” them in such a sacrificial and humble way. :-)

  115. “Maybe only apostles are honored for their labors.”
    Only super-apostles. Lesser apostles like LT get their history revised.

  116. Dave –

    You’re right :) The only one actually honored AT ALL, that I can see, has been CJ. Any other apostles that left the organization were demoted and then given the boot. If people don’t see a problem with that scenario, then they must choose to be blind. I guess CJ can claim godliness by being the last man standing of the originals. In his own mind anyway!)

  117. Anon1 – You kind of overdid it there in your response to me.

    No, of course it was not exactly like what goes on today.

    But it was awfully similar.

    I guess maybe you had to be there…

  118. P.S.: Larry Tomczak and CJ were influential back in the 70s (believe it or not). They had their fans even then.

  119. Books, too?

    Yes.

    Ditto for spending a lot of time out on speaking gigs, though in the case I know best, it was YWAM “discipleship training.” (Still is, in this person’s case.) And then there were the folks like the Ft. Lauderdale 5, who also did a lot of running around, speaking/preaching etc. etc. etc. (And selling books, tapes and what have you.)

    Just because you didn’t run into this back in the day does *not* mean I’m making it up.

  120. “Woman’s world is her husband, her family, her children and her home. We do not find it right when she presses into the world of men.”. Der Fuehrer — Dave A A

    Guess where I first heard the term “Hypermasculinity”? And who it was used to describe?

    Jer 7:18 The children gather wood, the fathers light the fire, and the women knead the dough and make cakes of bread for the Queen of Heaven. They pour out drink offerings to other gods to provoke me to anger.

    Dave, this is the first time I’ve heard that verse quoted in other than an anti-Catholic context. (As in “cakes of bread” referring to Communion Hosts and “Queen of Heaven” referring to St Mary.)

  121. Two things. I followed Eagle’s link to the Internet Monk and found it extremely interesting that the passage quoted there from Colossians 3 was the same passage that my husband had read in the middle of Saturday night which really spoke to him about a situation he’s in at work. He told me that he wants to be more kind and humble in his interactions there.

    Then, there is a song that I keep remembering as I’ve read the posts over the past few weeks about what it is to be a Christian and relating to one another. The first verse goes:


    ‘Brother, let me be your servant,
    Let me be as Christ to you.
    Pray that I may have the grace
    To let you be my servant, too.’

    I requested that we sing that at our son and daughter’s dedication last year as it sums up what I feel being part of the Body is all about.

  122. Estelle: I completely agree. After all, that’s the kind of love Christians should be known for. Not for being judgemental, self-righteous and power-grabbing.

  123. “Macho Church Pastors Gotz Double Vision?”

    HowDee YaAll,

    hmmm…

    …♪♫♪ Feeling down ‘n’ dirty, feeling kinda mean?
    I’ve been from one to another church extreme,
    This time I had a good time, ain’t got time to wait,
    Wanna be doing church kick boxing until I can’t see straight!

    (Oooh, double vision) church double vision, yeah-ah-ah eah-eah eah-eah ah…

    …♪♫♪ Fill my eyes with that double vision,
    No disguise for that church double vision,
    Ooh, when it gets through to me, it’s always new to me,
    My church double vision gets the best of me!

    What?

    …as you seen in me?

    huh?

    …Finally, brethren, whatever things have the character of truth, whatever things are worthy of reverence, whatever things are righteous, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are attractive, whatever excellence there is or fit object of praise, these things make the subject of careful reflection. The things also which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these things habitually practice, and the God of peace shall be with you. -Apostle Paul, of Tarsus, New Testament; Message to the Philippian Church.

    Hum, hum,hum…♫♫♫  “..all else is sinking sand?”

    pr♥ay

    S㋡py
    ___
    Comic relief: Foreigner- “Double Vision”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BC0GXFNKw_I&feature=youtube_gdata_player
    Songwriters: GRAMM, LOU / JONES, MICK
    Double Vision lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.
    (parody adaptation, Title 17 infringement unintended.) 

    Bonus: Dept. of Blanket Security Public Service Announcement (Official)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rxi5dX3JbPM&feature=youtube_gdata_player

  124. Bridget2
    You said, “If people don’t see a problem with that scenario, then they must choose to be blind.” You have just explained the travesty of the investigation at SGM.

  125. HUG
    i think it is important that people understand how these doctrines can be used to an extreme. I had never heard this one before.

    “Woman’s world is her husband, her family, her children and her home. We do not find it right when she presses into the world of men. Der Fuehrer”

  126. Hi Numo,

    I am so sorry I seem to have offended you. I think we are really looking at this from totally different perspectives. I agree these things are not new in and of themselves. What we are looking at (this is a research project might be a book) is the trajectory where certain elements have converged and the economies of scale involved. From movement to establishment including rise of mega churches, social media, branding, etc. This is a billion dollar industry today. When we look at the sheer numbers involved in all aspects, it is astonishing.

    BTW: They accused George Barna and Frank Viola of “overdoing it”, too.

  127. Seeker, My time has been very limited in checking out your entire comment but we are simply going to disagree. I take not just associations but promotion and affirmation of false teaching with bad behavior very seriously. Where are the Nathan’s? Afraid of offending their followers? Chandler has helped and partnered with Driscoll.So have many others. Not only that but he has gone along with the deception of Driscoll stepping down to “focus on Mars Hill” when only a few weeks before Driscoll had to come back to Acts 29 in a more hands on capacity to straighten things out. They are convinced we believe whatever they say. And many do. And many will parse every word looking for loopholes. Chandler has decided to who to hang out with and he has aligned himself with the Calvinistas for some reason. The question is why?

  128. “The A29 board seems to be back to 1/3 MH and 2/3 not MH. Having A29 central moved to TX will reduce the presence of MH in central staff. If 80% of the funding for Acts 29 still comes from Mars Hill, though, and Driscoll is still on the board the SBC will have legitimate reason to be concerned about a heavy influence. Now if MH leaders ever had the stones to admit they are and want to be a denomination then Acts 29 could be cheerfully acknowledged as a puppet entity of Mars Hill but the thing is Driscoll and the other elders at the top seem to be in complete denial about being a denomination. How can Acts 29 be an interdenominational network if it’s been dominated by a raging closet case denomination the way Mars Hill seems to be one? If Mars Hill executive leadership would just come out of the closet about being a denomination that alone might help the MH image and make it easier for A29 to be seen as interdenominational all in one go.”

    WTH, I found this comment very interesting. You might find this post a bit comical considering what you wrote:

    http://sbcvoices.com/we-can-work-it-out/

    It has to do with the fact that Acts 29 will only plant Calvinist churches but wants SBC funds. So this pastor has an idea of how to work this out since about 80% of the SBC is non Calvinist and might not want to plant YRR Driscoll influenced type of churches.

    The real question is how can it last now if 80% of funding comes from Mars Hill? Do you see Driscoll funding it without power? There is obviously a move to find other funding. Sojourn (SBC aligned) in Louisville announced quickly after after Driscoll stepped down that it was leaving Acts 29 to start it’s own church planting network. That is fine except Sojourn has Driscoll DNA all over it and changing the affiliation won’t change a thing about how they operate or what they teach. The Driscoll DNA is all over it.

    I am wondering if the name is going to be changed or what. The push back on Acts 29 from the SBC rank and file is gaining momentum quickly. So we are seeing the old Driscoll stalwarts like Akin, Mohler, etc, starting to want to brush some of their partnering and affiliation under the rug. It is going to be interesting to see how this plays out. Right now they all seem to be pretending Driscoll never existed.

  129. Anon1,

    No problem about the time…I understand..my thoughts turned out to be rather long, longer than it should have been really.

    One thing I mentioned in my post was if there is a link floating about that shows Chandler affirming Driscoll’s false teaching and bad behavior publicly. I know he has been silent, and that may be what you mean when you say “affirming”..but I would be intrigued to see him publicly affirm some of the ridicoulous things Driscoll has done…

    I know Chandler and Driscoll are associates, maybe even friends, and I can’t understand why Chandler has been silent on these things. It raises questions, and causes concern on my part. Yet I still see a lot of good and credibility in Chandler. I think that is mostly where we disagree.

    And yes, the Acts 29 stuff seems a bit too “under the rug” or political for me as well, but I think in the long run, it will be a good move.

    Chandler posted a blog post on the A29 website a while back..This might have been linked before on TWW…He mentions something about “running diagnostics on our systems”….That could mean a number of things, but I wonder if they are going to do an “overhaul” on the Driscoll DNA of A29…or maybe it just means something about computers..lol.

    You can read the blog post, along with an interesting video on church planting, on the website.

    http://www.acts29network.org/

    I can’t answer why Chandler has fully decided to run with the Calvinista crowd like he has over the last 5 years. Obviously Chandler is a Calvinist himself…and I mentioned in my previous post that it is really nothing new for him to speak at speaking engagements such as this…

    I personally think Chandler goes to these events and walks in these circles (aside for himself being a Calvinist) for two reasons:

    1. In Chandlers point of view, the Calvinistas emphasize the Gospel moreso than other things that one can find in some Christian circles such as—-(Church Growth, Prosperity Gospel, Debt is Dumb, etc)

    The moments where he has been to other conferences that are not strictly the latter, I think he has made a concerted effort to emphasize Christ above all, including His good news (I think of Catalyst conference, Orange Conference at Furtick’s church, etc)..

    2. I think he sees the potential in using the influence that these events (and influence that comes with Calvinista connections) can offer to lift up the name of Christ, His Gospel, serve other ministers, etc.

    I know there is a great potential to fall prey to Pride, Greed, Power, Prestige, etc in all of this…I just don’t see Chandler has arrived at this point yet…I sincerely think he chooses to be a part of all this to make much of Jesus.

  130. Anon1 – agreed that there is an overarching “celebrity” industry today, in our society, that has become pervasive in certain parts of the evangelical/charismatic world.

    Still… given that Piper et. al. seem to hold to many principles that come from the discipleship/shepherding movement, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if there’s been a “snowballing” effect over the past few decades. (As in, what’s happening now isn’t occurring in a vacuum.)

    I suspect that Frank Schaeffer could easily draw a flow chart, and likely others, too.

  131. Sopwith quoted Paul,
    “The things also which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these things habitually practice, and the God of peace shall be with you.”
    The God of peace, and the gospel of peace mentioned by Paul in another letter–
    Peace–just another attribute never affirmed by the t4g a&d or the church of MMA. Nor, of course, is violence denied.
    The 18th century pacifist William Law said, 
        “Now fancy to yourself Christ, the Lamb of God, after His Divine Sermon on the Mount, putting himself at the head of a blood-thirsty army, or Paul going forth with a squadron of fire and brimstone, to make more havoc in human lives than a devouring earthquake.
         But if this is too blasphemous an absurdity to be supposed, what follows, but that the Christian who acts in the destroying fury of war (or the destroying fury of Christian kickboxing, or the destroying fury of a season of abuse or smacking around–ed.) acts in full contrariety to the whole nature and Spirit of Christ, and can no more be said to be led by His Spirit, or be one with Him, than those His enemies who “Came forth with swords and staves to take Him.”
         HUG wrote of how some Protestants think the prophets had the VIRGIN Mary in mind when they spoke of FERTILITY goddesses and their poles. But we reformers  don’t dare apply the prophecy to ourselves. We don’t see the parallel between Xian Pole Dancing and Asherah Pole worship. Or between Quiverfull and the Astarte Bunny and all her eggs. Or between OT families working together in assigned roles with an other-than-God focal point, and Focus on the Family. We’re blind.
    But statues of the Mary? We can see them! Looks like idolatry to us…  
         Law continues,
         “Blinded Protestants think they have the glory of slaughtering blind papists; and the victorious papist claims the merit of having conquered the troops of heretics: but alas! The conquest is equally great on both sides, both are entitled to the same victory; and the glorious victory on both sides, is only that of having gospel goodness equally trampled under their feet.
         When a most Christian majesty, with his catholic church, sings a te deum at the high altar, for rivers of protestant blood poured out; or an evangelic church sings praise and glory to the Lamb of God, for helping them from His holy throne in heaven, to make popish towns burn like Sodom and Gomorrah, they blaspheme God as much as Cain would have done, had he offered a sacrifice of praise to God for helping him to murder his brother. Let such worshippers of God be told this, that the field of blood gives all its glory to Satan, who was a murderer from the beginning, and will to the end of his reign be the only receiver of all the glory, that can come from it.”

  132. anon1, thanks for the link.

    Given how silent Driscoll has been about Andrew, Lance, James Noriega, Scott Thomas, or member disciplinary procedures this year if SBC allies from the past are pretending Driscoll doesn’t exist maybe that’s just as well. Unless A29 funding stops being dominated by MH Driscoll’s going to retain a huge amount of informal power. If the funding goes down and he has a minority presence on the board then that might be better than his not being on the board but 80% of funding coming from MH. In the latter situation Driscoll could still substantially influence A29 policy and decisions even without Driscoll being on the board. Of course if the board is just three people Driscoll won’t be the minority because he’s got the fastest and biggest mouth as far as I can tell.

  133. “Clothed In Righteousness: Holding Your Ground…”

    HowDee YaAll,

    Eagle found himself among those bewildered of why so much evil exists in the world, a short while go in one of his posts. 

    hmmm… (maybe he was juz think’in out loud…)

    The historical consensus finds the absence of effectuated moral good, the underlining reason. 

    Succinctly stated, if man would find good in the world, he must of necessity, take it upon himself to create it. 

    (Let him busy himself forthwith, as you can never create too much of it.)

    Ahem! In the material world, Evil finds it’s self-expression through man. 

    Satan and his thirdly hord would be left among the swine, if not for man. 

    [And seeing that pigs are incapable of moral choice, (last time I checked) the party would be short lived.]

     Satan knows he is doomed. He simply has nothing to loose. 

    But man does!

    The moral of the story being a victory for Jesus, the “Hope of God” for a large family of Christ-like children, and ‘evil’ vanquish in the lake of fire. The first, a done deal, the second, on going, the third…TBD.  Yo! Stay Tuned.

    “Yah mo b there…”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AJRPMAG_vGA&feature=youtube_gdata_player

    Paul also said: “Finally, be constantly strengthened in the Lord and in the active efficacy of the might that is inherent in Him. Clothe yourselves with the full armor of God to the end that you will be able to hold your ground against the strategems of the devil, because ‘our wrestling is not against blood and flesh’, but against the principalities, against the authorities, against the world rulers of this darkness, against spirit forces of perniciousness in the heavenly places. On this account, take to yourself, at once and once for all, the complete armor of God in order that you may be able to resist in the day, the pernicious day, and having achieved all things, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your loins in the sphere of truth, and having clothed yourself with the breastplate of righteousness, and having sandalled your feet with a firm foundation of the good news of peace; in addition to all these, taking to yourselves the shield of faith by means of which you will be able to quench all the fiery arrows of the pernicious one, and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit which is the word of God; through the instrumentality of every prayer supplication for need, praying at every season by means of the Spirit, and maintaining a constant alertness in the same with every kind of unremitting care and supplication for all the saints.”

    … and pray in order that there might be given you utterance in the opening of your mouth, in every fearless, confident freedom of speaking, to make known the mystery of the good news! Christ crucified, risen, at the right hand of The Father, sin & death- a solution satisfied, and entrance made to the glorious God Almighty!  ===>Sweet! Make da call!

    Bottom line: Stay close to the Almighty, pray effectively …in Jesus’ name, do much good, trust Him for the balance. 

    (Oh, and teach & encouraged others to do the same!)

    So that: “…Paul, I know…but whoooo in the Hell, are you! doesn’t happen…”

    See, the air is ‘honeysuckle’ already!

    (grin)

    hahahahahaha

    Hum, hum,hum…♫♫♫  “..all else is sinking sand?”

    pr♥ayHard

    S㋡py
    ___
    Comic relief: “Put On The Full Armor of God”…Iron Man!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1RwiXHRZoF0&feature=youtube_gdata_player

  134. Sopy –

    Is is just me or do some folks (including leaders) seem to have a problem with understanding what the “doing good” part looks like? They seem to need it “unpacked” for them?

    I will say that we all miss the “doing good” part at times. I certainly do. But when so much is plainly pointed out to many leaders and they still seem to sense no need to “Biblically” respond, I can only conclude that those that lead and are blind should not be called leaders.

  135. “One thing I mentioned in my post was if there is a link floating about that shows Chandler affirming Driscoll’s false teaching and bad behavior publicly. I know he has been silent, and that may be what you mean when you say “affirming”..but I would be intrigued to see him publicly affirm some of the ridicoulous things Driscoll has done…”

    I am confused why we would need a link showing affirmation of Driscoll’s teaching/behavior by Chandler. The facts are the facts. He has partnered with Driscoll, been close friends, been on the Acts 29 board….. so shouldn’t we assume he did not have a huge problem with Driscoll’s teaching or behavior all those years? And if he did, he would have backed off long before? So, I am not really following you here. Seems you want a specific statement from Chandler that is really unnecessary considering the facts.

  136. “Still… given that Piper et. al. seem to hold to many principles that come from the discipleship/shepherding movement, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if there’s been a “snowballing” effect over the past few decades. (As in, what’s happening now isn’t occurring in a vacuum.)”

    Bingo! Think taking a movement that was sporadic and grass roots and it becomes the establishment. And that is only one aspect of it. In fact, none of it is really about doctrine from our research. Doctrine is the “vehicle” that drives a movement. It is about power, celebrity, influence. The seekers used a different vehicle to gain power, celebrity and influence….and it is one the wane.

    The shepherding movement and NC were a perfect fit! In fact, guys like Mohler, who should know better, are moving in the “shepherding” direction. Why? Because it is about controlling the venue.

    It is a billion dollar business. Just the amount of “Christian” type conferences that have come up over the years is astonishing. The publishing numbers trajectory since the 60’s are incredible and now that folks self publish it will be even more. Now books are EXPECTED from the up and comers to capitalize on growing influence. Just a few years back one had to gain the celebrity first to publish a book. Like Warren, Hybels, etc. Now the newbies are getting published without much effort. Think Platt and Tullian as just a few examples. Some of these guys are in their 30’s and have huge followings, book deals, speaking gigs they can barely keep up. All for the Glory of God, of course, not them. (sarcasm alert)

    It is not unlike the sports industry in a way when it comes to the influence and celebrity. Which made the T4G promo using sports jerseys quite amusing to us.

  137. WTH,

    Thanks for the insight. How the funding is giong to happen is really the key to this.

    I cannot help but think Driscoll’s behavior toward TD Jakes in the Elephant room probably hurt him more with the SBC Calvinists than anything. They are probably proud of him concerning the Petry’s ruin and they have basically done some two steps concerning his sodomy stuff in the book….really dumbing it down. But I think the Jakes thing has really been a sore point with the SBC Calvinistas. Driscoll is too independent and off the NC reservation for them to get to go along on all things.

  138. “da maker of da universe… is our forever friend…”

    Bridget2,

    HowDee!

    I’m a thinkin’ Jesus made “unpacking” “doing good…”  relatively simple for all da kind folks: 

    1. Love God with everything, 
    2. Love your neighbor as yourself. (ya knowz: do unto others as you would want them to do unto you.)

    Expanded: 
    1. Take personal responsibility for Loving God with every thing.
    2.Take a personal responsibility for the “good” you do. First person, singular, personal pronoun : “I”. Find a recipient. Act. Repeat often. Repeat for as many as possible. Be thankful. Be prayerful. Be good. Be doing good. 

    Ta da!

    …da serpent (da Red Baron) had his widdle head bruised, so da rest should be relatively easy… 

    plus…da maker of da universe was da one doing da bruising…(for us)

    (grin)

    hahahahahahaha

    S㋡py
    ___
    Comic relief: Snoopy And The Red Barron (Peanuts Crew)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XdljMhUQWyQ&feature=youtube_gdata_player

    Bonus: Baron versus Beagle – The Original “Dogfight”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rNremK0cBEg&feature=youtube_gdata_player

  139. Anon1,

    “so shouldn’t we assume he did not have a huge problem with Driscoll’s teaching or behavior all those years? And if he did, he would have backed off long before? So, I am not really following you here. Seems you want a specific statement from Chandler that is really unnecessary considering the facts.”

    I am looking for public statements because you have stated before, quite confidently I might add, that Chandler affirms everything Driscoll has done…I am not as confident as you are just because of Chandler’s silence.

    I wrote about this before, and I already know we disagree on this, but silence to me does not necessarily mean full affirmation on EVERYTHING that Driscoll has done. I know Chandler supports Driscoll in a lot of ways, but I think it is quite ridicoulous to assume Chandler supports him on every thing Driscoll has done just because he has not publicly spoken out against what Driscoll has done or because he has not “backed off” on Driscoll.

    It may mean cowardice..It may mean Chandler “wants to play it safe”…It may just mean Chandler doesn’t want to publicly speak out against his friend…It may just mean Chandler has taken the necessary steps to show his disapproval privately or in smaller circles…Not necessarily the “right” thing to do in my opinion, but I still am careful to not assume that Chandler supports him in everything.

    “Now the newbies are getting published without much effort. Think Platt and Tullian as just a few examples. Some of these guys are in their 30′s and have huge followings, book deals, speaking gigs they can barely keep up. All for the Glory of God, of course, not them. (sarcasm alert)”

    So now Platt is all about himself as opposed for the Glory of God?

    I really don’t get it…Why is there so much disdain for things (books, conferences, etc) that can make much of Christ? Is it that hard to see? Another area where we could not even begin to agree..

    Radical was an excellent book, with an excellent premise for American Christians…

    There is a lot of “Christian fluff books” out there—Imo, Radical was not one of them…I believe the message of Radical brought glory to Christ, as well as caused many American Christians to take a hard look at our selves in relation to how we serve others.

    And I think in the case of Platt’s book, didn’t the proceeds end up going towards missions?

    And as I have said before in regards to Chandler, I am not seeing the portrait you try so hard to paint towards these guys being all about themselves, etc, etc…Some are, this is true…but Platt…Really?

  140. The May 8, 2012, Presidentially Stated (Pastor Matt Chandler) Purpose of The Acts 29 Organization:

    1. Priority Number One: (This is listed In Red) ["I want us"] “…to plant churches that plant churches.”

    (The Acts 29 Prime Directive: “That from the very beginning of an Acts 29 plant, the pastor and the people would have a vision and plan for planting another church.”)

    1a. The DNA of all A29 churches should be: “a deep and driving desire to see gospel saturated,” (churches).

    Q. What is “gospel saturated”? 
    Q. What does “gospel saturated” mean?
    Q.How does the term  “gospel saturated” equate to The Biblical Scriptures?

    1b. The DNA of all A29 churches should be: “biblically 
    faithful,” (churches)

    Q. What is “biblically faithful” ? 
    Q. What does “biblically faithful” mean?
    Q. How does the term  “biblically faithful” equate to The Biblical Scriptures?

    1c.  The DNA of all A29 churches should be: “missionally engaged churches” 

    Q. What is “missionally engaged”? 
    Q. What does “missionally engaged” mean?
    Q. How does the term  “missionally engaged” equate to The Biblical Scriptures?

    1d.   The DNA of all A29 churches should be: planted everywhere possible” (churches)

    Q. What is “planted everywhere possible”? 
    Q. What does “planted everywhere possible” mean?
    Q. How does the term  “planted everywhere possible” equate to The Biblical Scriptures?

    1e.  The DNA of all A29 churches should be: “in all types of locations.” (churches)

    Q. What is “in all types of locations”? 
    Q. What does “in all types of locations.” mean?
    Q. How does the term  “in all types of locations.” equate to The Biblical Scriptures?

    Let it be respectfully understood by all concerned parties:

    (That)

    1. Until Acts 29 President Matt Chandler offers an Acts 29 organizational apology to the women of Acts 29 affiliated churches for bringing Anal Sex in the Christian bedroom and subjecting these women to the fear of this serious abuse in a bedroom environment, this man, and the Acts 29 mission is suspect, as it should be.

    2. Until Acts 29 President Matt Chandler offers an Acts 29 organizational apology to the SBC and it’s leaders for condoning and encouraging Anal Sex in the Christian bedroom, for bringing great dishonor to this noble establishment, this man and the Acts 29 mission & Acts 29 organization is suspect, as it should be.

    3. Until Acts 29 President Matt Chandler offers an Acts 29 organizational apology to the Thomas Nelson book publisher for the damage this Mark Driscoll Acts 29 Christian sex book has done to soil a very grand history of a leading American Bible publisher, (for afore stated reasons) bringing great dishonor to this noble establishment, and damaging its potential future sales for ethical reasons, this man and the Acts 29 mission & Acts 29 organization is suspect, as it should be.

    4. Until Acts 29 President Matt Chandler addresses former Acts 29 actions unbecoming a Christian establishment, this man and the Acts 29 mission & Acts 29 organization is suspect, as it should be.

  141. Sopwith
    I truly think that Chandler should apologize for a lot of the nonsense that has been spawned by the Acts 29 leadership, including the poorly written statement of beliefs. Gosh, for “doctrinal whizzes” they are a bit shoddy in their expression. But, it will never happen. Being a Calvinist means never having to say you’re sorry.

  142. Excellent comment above, Sopwith, at 7:25.

    Anon1:

    “Bingo! Think taking a movement that was sporadic and grass roots and it becomes the establishment.”

    You are right. Shepherding did not die. It went underground for a while and changed names.

    “Now books are EXPECTED from the up and comers to capitalize on growing influence.”

    Matt Chandler has a new book coming out-
    http://www.lifewaysurvey.com/se.ashx?s=0DBB8EB4055CD30A

    I agree there is an endless supply books. This new book claims to show us how Jesus, I mean the gospel of Jesus, is central to everything the church does…which will lead to “spectacular worship.” Spectacular? Who is determining that?

    Also, FYI-

    I was looking over this site and found these discussions some second tier (not senior, executive or head honcho big P) pastors were having regarding leadership very interesting.

    Especially part 3, Leading a Team-

    http://ericgeiger.com/2012/05/leading-a-team-video-interview-series-part-3.php

  143. Sopwith,

    I respectuflly understand your position on all of this.

    I guess I just disagree with your assessment that ACTS 29 should be “suspect” because they haven’t given an apology for the actions of Mark Driscoll.

    Is Mark Driscoll an incapable person of apologizing himself? What about Mars Hill?

    To me, it would be far better for Driscoll or Mars Hill to offer a statement of apology for all of these things, rather than an organization that consists of over 400 different churches. Those churches and the organization as a whole were not responsible for writing or stating these things.

    For me, it is more appropriate for Driscoll and Mars Hill themselves to offer this apology, rather than an organization that is much bigger than Driscoll and Mars Hill.

    I will say this though, I find it suspect that Chandler has not spoken out against some of the things that Driscoll has done publicly, that alone raises some questions and concerns.

    Frankly, I wish he would speak up, but his failure to do so by no means shows me that he fully supports everything Driscoll has done or said…I have a lot of friends in my life that I support, encourage, and work with, but I by no means support everything that they have done, and I don’t necessarily call them out publicly for things that they have done wrong either…

    At the end of the day though, in spite of all the ways that Driscoll has tarnished the reputation of himself and the organization he is connected with, Acts 29 will continue to do great things for the Kingdom of God..

    Through many Acts 29 Churches and ministries, the Good News of Jesus Christ will be shared to those who are lost, people will come to know Christ, and disciples will be made.

    The latter will happen, regardless of how many people consider that this organization is “suspect” and has no “credibility”.

    I hope an apology comes forth at some point, and if the organization of Acts 29 steps up to make this apology, then that will be a great thing. I just hope Driscoll will be the one to offer this apology, for he alone is the main culprit in so many of these issues..

    Diane,

    “Spectacular? Who is determining that?”

    Just a guess here, but when you see the “GOOD” in the “Good News”, does it not cause your heart to rejoice and worship the God who saves?

    Maybe that is what they are referring too…? The Gospel should cause us to worship spectacularly!! The Bible reveals this…does it not?

  144. Dee –

    I’m bewildered at the lack of communication skills these men display. I’m starting to wonder if this is purposeful so as to be able to later morf their words into whatever their doctrinal needs might be at a later time.

    Sopy –

    Maybe we should ask Mr. Chandler why the churches should have Acts29 DNA (ick) instead of Jesus’ DNA?

    Is Acts29 DNA going to be better than Jesus’ DNA? He sure makes it sound that way.

  145. “Diane,

    “Spectacular? Who is determining that?”

    Just a guess here, but when you see the “GOOD” in the “Good News”, does it not cause your heart to rejoice and worship the God who saves?

    Maybe that is what they are referring too…? The Gospel should cause us to worship spectacularly!! The Bible reveals this…does it not?”

    The gospel causes me to worship God. I honestly never thought about whether or not I, or a church, was doing it spectacularly.

    Will others think…hmmm, I am not seeing spectacular worship in my church. Wonder why. I must buy this book and get the spectacular worship I evidently need.

    Perhaps the book will have helpful recommendations on how to get spectacular worship going-maybe A29/The Village DNA brand of spectacular worship? We’ll have to wait and see.

    .

  146. Bridget2,

    You said to Sopy,

    “Maybe we should ask Mr. Chandler why the churches should have Acts29 DNA (ick) instead of Jesus’ DNA?

    Is Acts29 DNA going to be better than Jesus’ DNA? He sure makes it sound that way.”

    I know you were mentioning this to Sopy, but I have a few questions in regards to what Sopy said and what you said here.

    1. How has Matt Chandler made it sound like Acts29 DNA is better than Jesus DNA? I am not following you here..

    2. How exactly is Acts 29 DNA opposed to Jesus and the Kingdom of God? I am not following you here either…

  147. Diane,

    “Perhaps the book will have helpful recommendations on how to get spectacular worship going-maybe A29/The Village DNA brand of spectacular worship? We’ll have to wait and see.”

    Agreed…We will have to wait and see for sure…I certainly don’t think that this book will head in the direction you mention, but I could be wrong..

    I will say this though, it is quite obvious, at least in my area, that genuine worship is sometimes replaced with something akin to “going through the motions”…no matter the style of music or style of service…

    But I have seen, when the Good News is lifted up, that people seem to open up to worship God more deeply, not only in a hour long gathering of the Church, but the day to day actions of the church..Perhaps that is what is meant by—“spectacular worship”…

    .02 cents

  148. “I will say this though, it is quite obvious, at least in my area, that genuine worship is sometimes replaced with something akin to “going through the motions”…no matter the style of music or style of service…”

    Well, I guess if worship is not there– it’s not there. It is in the heart of each individual believer to worship God. So–even though it may appear like “going through the motions” perhaps a good work is going on in the individual heart and there is indeed worship.

    “But I have seen, when the Good News is lifted up, that people seem to open up to worship God more deeply, not only in a hour long gathering of the Church, but the day to day actions of the church..Perhaps that is what is meant by—”spectacular worship”…”

    How do you see that? By their facial expressions? By their raising their arms? By how loud or long they sing? Looks can be deceiving. But–at any rate-good enough. If that is what it means; the gospel is lifted up and causes people to worship, then no need to buy his book. Just read about the gospel in the bible and save the 15-20 bucks.

  149. Chandler could say that, under the new leadership the organization is not responsible for, nor does in inherently endorse, what any former leader taught or said. That is not an apology, and it is a very unspecific but broad disclaimer.

  150. “Well, I guess if worship is not there– it’s not there. It is in the heart of each individual believer to worship God. So–even though it may appear like “going through the motions” perhaps a good work is going on in the individual heart and there is indeed worship.”

    Your right…Many times things will take place in an individuals heart…but if that is so, then I believe fruit will reveal itself in that believer after a time. The people I am referring to are people whose fruit has revealed that there is anything but worship in their lives.

    “How do you see that? By their facial expressions? By their raising their arms? By how loud or long they sing? Looks can be deceiving. But–at any rate-good enough. If that is what it means; the gospel is lifted up and causes people to worship, then no need to buy his book. Just read about the gospel in the bible and save the 15-20 bucks.”

    It is not about “how” someone worships or the “style” of that worship to me…It is the external fruit that comes from a heart of worship…

    There is a vast difference in someone who has a heart of worship and someone who doesn’t.

    All too often, in my area especially, the fruit that is revealed is apathy. The Body of Christ, the Kingdom of God, is something akin to attending a ballgame on Friday night…It is a cultural thing, not a worship thing…

    Looks can certainly be decieving, and sometimes even those who “appear” to worship can prove to be false…but one thing is for sure…if the person has a heart of worship of Jesus Christ, then that person will bear much fruit for the Kingdom.

    As far as this book…I probablly won’t buy it..I have enough books to read as it is..Especially the Word of God…but this doesn’t mean it won’t prove to be useful for some people…

    See, unlike the vast sentiment on this board, I actually think books whose goal is to make much of Jesus Christ a good thing…

  151. “Day Of The Spawned Religious Nonsense?”

    HowDee YaAll,

    Diane… (wink)

    Bridget2… “Brilliant”

    Matt “Chandler should apologize for a lot of the nonsense that has been spawned by the Acts 29 leadership?” -Dee, TWW.

    Comic relief: “High Hopes?”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sJAdEdXdrCc&feature=youtube_gdata_player

    hmmm…

    5. Until Acts 29 President Matt Chandler addresses former Acts 29 “nonsense that has been spawned by the Acts 29 leadership”, this man and the Acts 29 mission & Acts 29 organization remain suspect, as it should be.

    actions unbecoming a Christian establishment?

    “Is The Acts 29 Thrill Gone?”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lt2c9Iyq2UQ&feature=youtube_gdata_player

    hmmm…

    The Lord’s kids aren’t alright…

    And this ain’t green eggs & ham we’re talkin’ bout chere?!? Is it now?

    Pr♥ayHard  [Jesus hears our crys!]

    S㋡py
    __
    Comic relief: What ta do when da proverbial faux religion monster comes?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zTWY0FHcj6Y&feature=youtube_gdata_player

    Bonus: Acts 29 – “How Blue Can You Get?”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6jCNXASjzMY&feature=youtube_gdata_player

  152. “See, unlike the vast sentiment on this board, I actually think books whose goal is to make much of Jesus Christ a good thing…'”

    The only problem is if there is Jesus Christ, plus.

    Or if the making much of Jesus Christ is “our way” of doing things.

  153. “The only problem is if there is Jesus Christ, plus.

    Or if the making much of Jesus Christ is “our way” of doing things.”

    I agree with you. I certainly hope it doesn’t go in that direction.

    At first glance, it seems that it intends to keep it focused on Jesus and His Good News.

    Hence the language—“Jesus Centered Chuch”…”Gospel of Jesus Christ the basis of the Church’s existence”….

    Sounds good to me, but only time will tell…I fear other things much more than this..

  154. Sopy,

    Where do you come up with this stuff? The high hopes song was..well…interesting..

    Now the blues….Love it!

    Anyway, I think good things will come forth in Acts 29 now…Not that good things didn’t come forth before in spite of said organization’s leader…

    But maybe that is me having “high hopes”….

  155. Anon1 – Exactly.

    SGM (aka TAG, PDI, etc. etc. etc.) has deep roots in the discipleship movement. I think their name changes are about re-branding the same old same old rather than any actual changes. (Unless a religious equivalent to reinventing the wheel counts as “change.”)

    The corporate branding/franchise aspect is a relatively new development, but a logical one – xtian publishing was way ahead of the curve in that respect, back in the 70s. (Building on the charismatic movement in general and the discipleship movement in particular.) Though I would not characterize previous efforts as “grass roots” so much as lower-key, without the huge PR machine that everyone seems to want to use nowadays.

  156. Tag on my last post: should have added “Jesus movement” to my previous list of marketing stuff, as that’s when the xtian publishing and recording industries really took off.

  157. Sopy,

    This is my take on all this:

    “Q. What is “gospel saturated”?
    Q. What does “gospel saturated” mean?
    Q.How does the term ”gospel saturated” equate to The Biblical Scriptures?”

    1. To be saturated with the Good News of Jesus Christ…Hence, this is a central part of your life…This is a primary thing in your life, not secondary.

    2. See above.

    3. Romans 1:16 “I am unashamed of the Gospel” Seems like Paul was saturated with the Good News of Jesus—-He is not alone.

    “Q. What is “biblically faithful” ?
    Q. What does “biblically faithful” mean?
    Q. How does the term ”biblically faithful” equate to The Biblical Scriptures?”

    1. To be as faithful as you can to the word of God..(sticky situation I know, since our interpretations can cloud this..but I think as long as the primary issues are held together (salvation, Jesus as God, etc)—I think that is a good thing.
    2. See above.
    3. Considering the Revelation of God is held to high esteem throughout His word—it is probablly not a good idea to deviate from that.

    “Q. What is “missionally engaged”?
    Q. What does “missionally engaged” mean?
    Q. How does the term ”missionally engaged” equate to The Biblical Scriptures?”

    1. To be engaged throughout the world on the mission of Jesus Christ—-ie…Go out, make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father, Son, Holy Spirit..
    2. See above.
    3. Great Commission? (I believe the church planting goal of A29 ultimately hopes to fulfill the Great Commission..)

    “Q. What is “planted everywhere possible”?
    Q. What does “planted everywhere possible” mean?
    Q. How does the term ”planted everywhere possible” equate to The Biblical Scriptures?”

    1. Um…plant churches throughout the US…maybe even the Globe? (Think it might help the “go into all nations part of the Great Commission?)
    2. See above?
    3. Great Commission

    “Q. What is “in all types of locations”?
    Q. What does “in all types of locations.” mean?
    Q. How does the term ”in all types of locations.” equate to The Biblical Scriptures?”

    I will answer this all together….It probablly means: Urban Areas, Rural Areas, Suburban Areas, Poor Areas, etc, etc, etc…

    .02 cents

  158. Seeker
    I would love for Chandler to describe the Gospel. These days it is Gospel this, Gospel that. Gospel has become the adjective for certain doctrines. Gospel gender roles, Gospel homes, Gospel missions,etc. I have loved the Gospel since I was 17. I fear that we may be talking about different things sometimes. I am not directing this comment towards Chandler, merely to the movement of which Chandler is an integral part. Why the sudden “Gospel” everything? If I don’t buy, let’s say strict complementarianism ala Acts 29 (which did a poor job explaining it in their statement btw, am i suddenly practicing something that is NOT the Gospel?

  159. And Dee:

    “If I don’t buy, let’s say strict complementarianism ala Acts 29 (which did a poor job explaining it in their statement btw, am i suddenly practicing something that is NOT the Gospel?”

    Under the affirmations in the role of women guide for membership:

    http://fm.thevillagedev.net/resource_files/study_guides/20070204TheRoleofWomen.pdf

    “10. We are convinced that a denial or neglect of these principles will lead to increasingly destructive consequences in our families, churches, and the culture at large.”

    I guess complete agreement to the views on comp is not mandatory for membership at The Village, but one would be contributing to point number 10 (destructive consequences in the culture) should one disagree.

  160. Diane
    Hmmm, me, a destroyer of the culture? I wonder how they “proved” that or is it just another one of those Christian urban legends.

  161. For those of you who might be wondering what Hester and I have talked about regarding boys/patriarchy/home business after they are too old for traditional homeschooling because Mom would be “teaching” them – read this article.

    Stumbled across it today and thought it would make things perhaps clearer for some. It’s a long article but it deserves to be read all the way through. You’ll quickly see how these families in patriarchal circles push for home-based biz or family biz so that Daddy & Sons can still keep tabs on mom & daughter (and get lots of FREE labor)

    http://nolongerquivering.com/2010/08/27/debt-free-how-the-duggars-other-quiverfull-couples-support-all-those-kids/

  162. Dee and Diane,

    Dee, I would say to you that Matt Chandler has described the Gospel, and he is well within the realm of Orthodoxy with it. (Haven’t read his new book yet, but that should further reveal what he believes about the Gospel)…

    I think the sudden “Gospel” everything because we live in an age where the prosperity Gospel is rampant….the Rob Bells are floating around hinting Universalism…I would say this is their response to that. For every “Gospel” book that has arrived, you have a Joel Osteen your “Best Life Now” floating around..

    Although I believe Chandler and the Village share strong convictions to the importance of the Comp doctrine, as Diane pointed out, I have never heard him describe this as THE Gospel.

    I have heard them describe passages like Ephesians 5 as a picture of the Gospel (you know, the whole men lay your life down as Christ loves the church)—-but never have I heard that Manhood/Womanhood differentiation roles as part of THE Good News of Jesus Christ. They have mentioned following the scriptural mandates to marraige will point us to the Gospel, (laying down your life for each other) but this never becomes the Gospel itself.

    Diane,

    This church has strong convictions, just as this website has strong convictions about certain things. Many on here have strong convictions that Egalitarianism is what is revelaed in scripture, and Complimentarianism can become destructive, heretical, etc, etc…

    The Village holds the opposite view based on their interpretation on Scripture.

    It is certainly not a mandate for membership, and I don’t see Chandler and the other Pastors emphasizing this as a continuous primary thing in their church as the Gospel is primary.

    If anything, I have commended Chandler for emphasizing to his young crowd at the Village, specifically Husbands, to care for their wives and to love their wives….I can’t tell you how many times he has “harped” on the men to STEP UP and love their wives as they should.

    I think they would say not doing the latter would be consequential, along with women not caring for their husbands in respect and submission.

  163. “It is certainly not a mandate for membership, and I don’t see Chandler and the other Pastors emphasizing this as a continuous primary thing in their church as the Gospel is primary.”

    You are right–it does say it is not mandatory for membership, as I pointed out. But culture destroying, and important enough to be listed as one of the A29 four core convictions (Chandler is the prez and surely holds to these):

    “5.A manifesto on our core convictions: gospel-centered theology, Spirit-filled or empowered lives, complementarian relationships, and missional churches.”
    http://www.acts29network.org/acts-29-blog/dear-acts-29-members/

    And since a comp marriage displays the gospel, then they surely would deem it very important if not a “continuous primary thing.”

    “Diane
    Hmmm, me, a destroyer of the culture? I wonder how they “proved” that or is it just another one of those Christian urban legends.”

    They are free to have their strong comp convictions and people are free to join up should they so desire. But to say that those who do not hold to the comp view add to increasingly destructive consequences in family, culture and church is certainly a claim that I would like to see expanded. I have not destroyed my family nor has my husband…32 years and counting.

  164. “I have a lot of friends in my life that I support, encourage, and work with, but I by no means support everything that they have done, and I don’t necessarily call them out publicly for things that they have done wrong either…”

    Let’s say, for example, you knew one was an embezzler or a congential liar, would you partner with him on projects? Would you sit on the board of his company?

    Chandler knows what Driscoll has taught for a long time. He knew about Petry (As did Piper and others it was not a secret he went from 40 voting elders to 3), SoS, and all the other Driscoll stuff that has gone on for a long time. Still, he chose to partner with him and be on Acts 29 board. This is a strong affirmation of Driscoll’s behavior and teaching. I know you don’t see it that way. You one of many who don’t.

  165. “If anything, I have commended Chandler for emphasizing to his young crowd at the Village, specifically Husbands, to care for their wives and to love their wives….I can’t tell you how many times he has “harped” on the men to STEP UP and love their wives as they should.”

    Someone a while back gave a quote from Chandler to the effect his wife could be any woman. Anyone remember this?

  166. “I’ll be very honest with you here. My wife Lauren, she’s just a girl. And I could be married to another woman and be happy. Do you know how I know she’s the one for me? Because I’m married to her. That’s how I know. If I were married to someone else, they would be for me.”

    From page 4 of The Path (Part 7) Sanctification in Marriage

    The Path (Part 7) – Sanctification in Marriage
    Matt Chandler – October 25, 2009

  167. Seeker
    Could you please describe the Gospel? What do you mean when you use the term? Do you use it an an adjective or a noun? Is it an event or concept unto itself or must it be defined in conjunction with another term?

    I also do not appreciate being told by Acts 29 that we damage the witness to the Gospel if we don’t buy the comp doctrine as defined by this “oh so correct” group. (Read it at T4G) I would suggest that you have them camcorder my life and see if I am “damaging” the Gospel. And once again, what do they mean by “the Gospel” in this sense? Well, of course, I have critiqued all the really cool Calvinistas so I guess that means I damage the Gospel.

    Since Chandler leads this organization he obviously believes that I, your humble blog queen, am damaging the Gospel. Do I damage the Gospel when I work with the handicapped? Do I damage the Gospel when I work with medical and dental students to encourage them in their faith? Oh yeah, when I pray for all those who comment here, do I damage the Gospel? When I raised my children to love God and serve others, did I damage the Gospel? Do I damage the Gospel when I tweet Bible verses and encourage people to read through the Bible?

    Seeker, I get it. You love Chandler. Fine. I feel that way about a few leaders myself. But I am frankly getting a bit irritated having you tell me that Chandler has done nothing wrong yet I am being told, by his organization that I am damaging the Gospel, something that I have loved and followed all of my life. So, I could join his church with my beliefs but he would contend I am damaging the Gospel. Why would I want to join his church?

  168. Diane –

    That is a sad quote. But it is an example of how he views the sovereignty of God me thinks. People become pawns in God’s plan. I can’t say I would relish being called “just a girl.” That does not give one a sense of being loved and cherished. I am not saying that he doesn’t love and cherish. I hope he views her as a woman and not a girl.

  169. The Gospel, aka Good News, it that God loved us and sent Jesus (God in flesh) to show us how to live and to die for us, so that we might be saved from the consequence of sin. He rose from the dead, showing that we too can defeat death and have eternal life as an adopted child of God. If we believe that message and accept his gift of grace to us, we are redeemed and will have eternal life.

    Nothing more, nothing less.

    Focusing on a lot of side issues and making anything else terribly important detracts from the Gospel. Everything but that Good News is not an A issue or B issue but a Z issue.

  170. Thanks Diane. I know it will be parsed from Kingdom come by the defenders but I found it very de-edifying for many reasons. It is the typical mindest about women in those circles. She is just a girl? Hmmm. The “Gospel” as a picture of marriage

    That is why these guys need some time being discipled and in the real world before they become celebs. They really have no clue. I don’t get why people eat this stuff up.

  171. Seeker @ 10:15 am –

    “Churches planting churches” sounds like an Amway growth pyramid to me.

    A29 (as he refers to it — name morf?) DNA is not equal to Jesus. I have seen the same “mission statement” in SGM. Planting (c)hurches is not the same as sharing the Gospel of the Good News of Jesus Christ and a person becoming a new creation in Christ Jesus. It can include that but, frankly, most growth is people coming from other churches. A29 churches have nothing “new” to offer under the sun. They want to offer A29 DNA (a cutesy attempt at a term BTW). Why don’t they offer Jesus and the Holy Spirit. It sounds like a set-up to a new improved image and marketing scheme. Why not publicly repent (or recant) for some wrong direction and teaching by their former leader? That is a true Biblical concept. That is what SGM and CJ Mahaney need to do. They all try to avoid the “Biblical” prescription to bring about “real” change by the power of the Holy Spirit. They keep putting bandaids on problems when they need the Great Surgeon to do a work in them. They are all so worried about their image and whatever else they are worried about that they miss what God “might” use before a world that laughs at Christianity because of what they see. What would true “humility” and repentance look like to the world if they should see it? What would that type of “Godly, Biblical, Gospel” action say to the world?

    Maybe, just maybe, it (the world) would say that there are people who believe and trust in God. Their actions align with the words that they keep spewing at us. They are humble people that give honor and glory to God in their lives. They are different because they live and act different. They don’t just give lip service and build little empires to rule. They don’t take in millions of dollars a year that go to salaries and media and buildings and furnishings. Who is their God? Radical I know.

    Well, that’s my rant for now.

  172. Diane,

    “And since a comp marriage displays the gospel, then they surely would deem it very important if not a “continuous primary thing.”

    As a said, they have strong convictions on the matter, but they do not hold it equal to the Gospel…That is what I meant to say.

    Anon1,

    “Let’s say, for example, you knew one was an embezzler or a congential liar, would you partner with him on projects? Would you sit on the board of his company?”

    Depends really… but in Chandler’s case to me, it makes sense to not leave A29 when all of this stuff went down…As I have said before, A29 is bigger than Driscoll…and you are seeing that today. You see him staying on the board, partnering with him, as a strong affirmation on the actions that Driscoll has committed…I don’t.

    Obviously Chandler cares about A29—The Village is part of A29—so why would Chandler leave an organization that he cares about because Driscoll makes some really bad decisions in Mars Hill and in some books he writes?

    Chandler needs to speak out in regards to some things that Driscoll has done. I have said this before…The main difference between you and me is that you find Chandler’s credibility completely shot because he hasn’t done this…Ok..That is good for you…Not for me.

    Anon1,

    You also said,

    “Someone a while back gave a quote from Chandler to the effect his wife could be any woman. Anyone remember this?”

    Yeah…I know what you are talking about…Here, let’s see the context in which he would say such things:

    “I’ll be very honest with you here. My wife Lauren, she’s just a girl. And I could be married to another woman and be happy. Do you know how I know she’s the one for me? Because I’m married to her. That’s how I know. If I were married to someone else, they would be for me. You see, in this idiot ideology that we’ve created with our movies, if one person marries the wrong person, doesn’t that jack it up for everybody? Because that means if Lauren is not my girl and I married her anyhow, that means I married someone else’s perfect one, which means they’re forced to marry someone else’s perfect one, which now means they’re forced to marry someone else’s perfect one. And so if you just do the little map, someone married someone 700 years ago married the wrong guy, and now we’re all in trouble. This is a foolish, ridiculous idea. I’m just a man, and Lauren is just a girl. Lauren cannot complete me, cannot fulfill me, cannot make sense of my world and to expect her to is to put pressure on her that she will be unable to carry, will be unable to sustain and will be unable to bring any of those things into my life, which will create in me an anger towards her for not doing what she was never designed to do, created to do or able to do to begin with. So when a woman says, “This man will complete me. . .this man will make sense of my world. . .this man will make me know who I am. . .this man will heal my wounds,” you are putting weight on the man that he will be unable to sustain and it will only be a matter of time before he develops hobbies to get out from under that expectation. He cannot carry it. Put your hope in God, not men. We’re sinners. Which means sometimes on accident or sometimes on purpose, we’re going to fail you and wound you. Don’t ask us to be more than we were designed to be; we will fail you. Put your hope in God, not in external beauty and not in men.”

    HMMMMM….Changes the perspective a bit when we see it in its’ full context?

    He probablly could have used a better choice of words to explain this a bit better, but what he is ultimately saying is true. Idolatry, even with our spouses, is flat out wrong. He is ultimately saying that he is not putting his ultimate hope in his wife, and she is not putting her ultimate hope in him..

    But Oh, I forget, let’s just focus on the part that damns him more shall we?

    Classic example of what annoys me so often around here—Taking snippets out of an entire sermon and ranting and raving over it….Kind of like all the generalities that you bring forth as well..

    Wonder what Lauren would think about your criticisms on all this….Appearances can be decieving, but I would be careful before you “think you know” how Chandler loves his wife and what he thinks of her.

  173. Seeker

    I have heard what Chandler said by almost all of my pastors in just about all of my churches over the last three decades. It is hardly unique. But, they have all said it in a kinder, more thoughtful manner without using their wife as an example of “just about anyone they could be married to.” Yes, yes we all know such things… but we can say things in a gentle manner. There is a bit of a harshness in his demeanor but perhaps that is a Calvinista approach.

    And last time I checked, most people do not idolize their spouses, especially if they have been married more than a few years. The pastors who I have heard say exactly the same thing as Chandler use it as an example of why God does not have one perfect plan for us.That he is flexible and that we can go down many paths and still fit within his will. None of them said “Yep, I could have been married to just about anyone and have been happy.” It’s just plain bad manners.

    As for this: “Classic example of what annoys me so often around here—Taking snippets out of an entire sermon and ranting and raving over it….Kind of like all the generalities that you bring forth as well.” You have your own manner of driving home a point as well. Frankly, your Calvinista friends would not allow divergent opinions and strong critiques on their blogs. Even your Chandler resorted to namecalling when someone critiqued him. I wrote a whole post on it.

    This blog is open to all people and all comments, including a running apologetic on a favorite pastor whilst criticizing,with a broad swath, those who comment here.

  174. Seeker – frankly, Chandler gives away his hand when he refers to his wife as “just a girl” but calls himself “a man.”

    It strikes me as foolish to keep arguing over and over that Chandler isn’t saying what he actually IS saying.

    You might not like that (I certainly don’t!), but it’s true nonetheless.

    Like his pal M. Driscoll, he clearly doesn’t see adult women as equals, or else he would be referring to them as “women.”

    he’s not 16 anymore, and neither is his wife. Boy/girl seems accurate at that age, but from then on in – nope! It’s condescending, even infantilizing.

  175. Dee,

    “Could you please describe the Gospel? What do you mean when you use the term? Do you use it an an adjective or a noun? Is it an event or concept unto itself or must it be defined in conjunction with another term?”

    I have done this before with you. Forgot so soon? The Gospel (in short) is the atoning work of Christ on the cross, the power of His resurrection. It is literally the Good News of Christ’s redemption for us.

    I grow tired of these silly questions…especially when I have answered them before…

    “also do not appreciate being told by Acts 29 that we damage the witness to the Gospel if we don’t buy the comp doctrine as defined by this “oh so correct” group. (Read it at T4G)”

    Wait, I am confused now…Is Acts 29 and T4G the same organization? I know they share similarities, but they are two different organizations are they not? I looked at the Acts 29 website, and all I could find on the Comp issue on their Doctrine page was this:

    “•We are not egalitarians and do believe that men should head their homes and male elders/pastors should lead their churches with masculine love like Jesus Christ”

    That is all I could find…maybe you saw something else though..

    I know T4G mentions that you damage the witness of the Gospel if you confuse the Comp issue. I have stated on here before that they took this too far…

    I would love to hear this further expanded on exactly what they mean….The only thing I could think of is their opinion of Comp doctrine is a picture of the Gospel, especially in relation to Ephesians 5 (The mutual submission of Man loving wife as Christ loves church and wife loving husband by submitting to him)…This implies laying yourself down for the other as Christ has done for us out of love on the cross.

    I am assuming that they believe in our marriages, if we fail to follow this, then we could damage a witness that our marriages could give for the Gospel. This is THEIR interpretation on all of this of course..but it makes sense to me.

    For you Dee, I would look at it like this…In your marriage, you have stated that you and your husband practice radical sacrifice for each other..or something like that…Can that not be a picture or witness of what Christ has done for us?

    Through you and your Husbands marriage, you have an opportunity to “witness” to what Christ has done for you to other through your marriages radical sacrifice. Now if you or your husband become selfish, that could damage that potential witness you have…

    “Since Chandler leads this organization he obviously believes that I, your humble blog queen, am damaging the Gospel. Do I damage the Gospel when I work with the handicapped? Do I damage the Gospel when I work with medical and dental students to encourage them in their faith? Oh yeah, when I pray for all those who comment here, do I damage the Gospel? When I raised my children to love God and serve others, did I damage the Gospel? Do I damage the Gospel when I tweet Bible verses and encourage people to read through the Bible?”

    No, No, No, No, and No…..It is silly to think that Chandler or anyone would think that. You are smarter than this. I think Chandler and others find what is in Ephesians 5, in regards to husband/wife, points to a “picture” of the Gospel and even a witness for the Gospel (You know..to “walk in love” as Christ walked in love for us in His redemption for us…)..

    I think they find when the Man fails to love his wife as he should, or when the Women fails to submit to her husband as she should…then this creates confusion to that “picture and witness” that could be in the marriage..thus causing potential problems.

    This is their interpretation, not mine, but they hold to this view of scripture as you do for your Egal viewpoint.

    I think you could look at an Egal relationship in marriage and say the same thing in regards to a picture or witness of the Gospel.

    I don’t know if you will follow what I am trying to say…but I don’t think they are taking this to the level that you assume they are…Maybe in some cases, but I have never seen this with Platt or Chandler…

    “Seeker, I get it. You love Chandler. Fine. I feel that way about a few leaders myself. But I am frankly getting a bit irritated having you tell me that Chandler has done nothing wrong yet I am being told, by his organization that I am damaging the Gospel, something that I have loved and followed all of my life. So, I could join his church with my beliefs but he would contend I am damaging the Gospel. Why would I want to join his church?”

    I never said Chandler has done nothing wrong…I just said Chandler, as my brother in Christ (and yours), has credibility and value in regards to the Kingdom. I believe Chandler truly loves Jesus, His Gospel, and the Kingdom of God. I respect him for a lot of things he has done…I also question a lot of things he has done..

    I belive Chandler has served the Kingdom of God in some good ways.

    I also believe Chanlder is not perfect, he has made some mistakes.

    I belive he should speak up in regards to Driscoll, but I do not believe his credibility is shot completely because he has not done so.

    Sorry you are irritated Dee…Frankly, I am a bit irritated at alot of things on this blog as well…Such as the incessant generalities that pop up every now and again….Things taken out of context….Getting questioned on things I have already answered…The continuous denial from many that a guy like Chandler actually might love Jesus, the Gospel, and cares for the Kingdom…

    Irritation happens when people strongly disagree…I still have great respect for much of what you do here and respect you as a Sister in Christ. I have no doubt you love Jesus and are doing great things for Him in what you have stated above…

    And Dee, you wouldn’t want to join his church considering you are an Egalitarian and the Village’s leadership holds to a Comp viewpoint…Not to mention you have disdain for all things “Calvinista”…but they wouldn’t condemn you for joining if you do not hold to a comp view, they make this clear in their membership agreement…

    Oh…One more thing:

    “This blog is open to all people and all comments, including a running apologetic on a favorite pastor whilst criticizing,with a broad swath, those who comment here.”

    Criticism runs both ways on this blog..I can’t tell you how many times the words “naive”, “blind”, and others have been implied in my direction because I don’t consider Chandler, Conferences, book sales, etc to be the kind of heresy that is often painted at TWW.

    And just to be clear, I have great respect for every commentor here, but like you, I get irritated on the approach taken at times.. Things are a little less objective than I want them to be when it comes to certain comments directed at Chandler and others…The comment above was a classic example….

    But I get it, when it comes to the majority of Calvinista’s, this blog’s intention is not to show the “good” that can be found…that is what other blogs are for…I have heard that one quite a bit as well..

    But as a commentor, I can’t help but try to bring some balance to the “one-sided” approach that is often planted here…Hence my “running apologetic”..

  176. Numo,

    I personally don’t like it when grown men call their wives “girls”…I know of someone who does this quite often with his wife..calls her “my girl”…and it weirds me out…but as a couple, it seems to “work” for them…This guy loves his wife dearly, and she loves him dearly…It is not meant as a demeaning thing, but it is just the “culture” of their marriage I suppose…

    It is certainly a “no no” in my marriage. I can say that much!

    I don’t necessarily like it…It weirds me out…But it is their marriage…I don’t know how Matt truly feels about Lauren or vice versa, but I find it a bit odd when bloggers who barely know them start criticising and assuming what a couple feels about each other because the husband calls his wife a girl…

    Maybe Chandler is “clearly” demeaning to his wife here, or maybe this is just part of their “culture” as the couple I know..But I don’t feel comfortable assuming that he demeans her, doesn’t love her, etc.. because of how he stated this…Feel free if you want too, I just don’t feel comfortable coming to that conclusion about a couple I barely know..

    And Dee,

    Chandler is not your typical “gentle” teacher in how he presents things sometimes…That can be a good thing in certain instances, and sometimes it can result in the latter..

    This is why I started to listen to David Platt more than Chandler over the years, Platt presents things in a much more thoughtful way…

    But regardless, Chandler spoke the truth in the matter, no matter how abrasive it came across.

  177. Seeker – I guess you will continue to defend Chandler, and I will continue to disagree with your assessment of him, but… I honestly don’t feel like getting into further discussion of this.

    I think anyone who speaks publicly and is a public personality is liable to criticism and knows it.

    Dee and others are well within their rights to express their opinions on this blog and anywhere else.

    ‘Nuff said.

  178. “I honestly don’t feel like getting into further discussion of this.”

    Fair Enough.

    “I think anyone who speaks publicly and is a public personality is liable to criticism and knows it.

    Dee and others are well within their rights to express their opinions on this blog and anywhere else.

    ‘Nuff said.”

    Yep. Never said they didn’t have the rights…Just said I don’t particularly agree or like the approach taken at times…

    And I agree…”Nuff Said”.

  179. “Seeker’s poisoning of the TWW Well?”

    HowDee YaAll,

    Seeker’s Implicit long-winded conclusion: “Therefore, any claims made here @ TWW, cannot be relied upon”.

    …all that is missing is the bullhorn!

    Aufmerksamkeit!  Kann ich Ihre Aufmerksamkeit bitte haben!

    …nice try 

    (grin)

    hahahahahahaha

    “We go to gain a little patch of ground that hath in it no profit but the name.” -Wm. Shakespeare

    hmmm…

    S㋡py
    ___
    Comic relief: MASH 4077 – “Potters Rant”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NpIgQTeAD9c&feature=youtube_gdata_player

  180. “Seeker’s Implicit long-winded conclusion: “Therefore, any claims made here @ TWW, cannot be relied upon”.

    Sure..that’s what I said, but since you brought it up for me in your ever so “cutesy” way Sopy…

    Considering, AT TIMES, many of your claims turn into generalities, unfounded speculation, and your opinion with little to no evidence..Then no, AT TIMES, they are not reliable for me.

    But obviously they are reliable for you…So carry on good people, carry on…

    Typical though, anyone who tends to disagree with these so called “objective” claims “poison” the well?”

    Hmmmmmmmmm

  181. Seeker
    Sorry that I am just a bit slow for you. Did you ever think that your answer to my question has not really answered my question? You have defined the Gospel and I happen to agree with your definition. But the Calvinistas spend a whole lot of time putting the word”gospel” in front of nouns and, in so doing, IMNHO, dilute the Gospel.

    Now, let’s get down to marriage as a picture of the Gospel. I am about to say something that will irritate a few folks. Robert Jefress at FBC Dallas is building or has built a fountain for @$12 million. His rational-it will draw people to Christ. Yep, a fountain. People are starving in the world,marriages are going down the tubes, etc and he thinks a fountain will “save” people.

    As for the marriage relationship being an example to the world of how things are in heaven, frankly, I do not see that lived out much, if ever, and the divorce rate in the church is higher than the divorce rate for atheists. I do not believe that we should put onto marriages that which only Christ can model perfectly. I do not remember the last time I heard someone say “Gee, look at the Smith’s marriage, now I understand Christ.” In fact, I heard something similar about 10 years ago about another Christian couple. Deb knows-I often quote it to her. “The Jaynes have the best marriage I know. They are totally devoted to one another. I wish I had a marriage like theirs (note: they said nothing about Christ).About 2 years after this comment, the marriage was dissolved and all sorts of revelations came out, totally beating down the wish of others to have a marriage like theirs.

    Marriage is two sinners trying to figure out how to live with one another while learning how to forgive one another. The world is not looking for role models of submissive wives and patriarch husbands. They are looking at marriages to see how to keep them together in spite of the sinful nature of both of the involved parties.Our marriages should be examples of grace given to each other in spite of our sinfulness.

    Frankly, the most impressive example of getting it on this whole blog at this moment is Charis. I honor her commitment to stay in a tough relationship for the sake of her large family. Her willingness to be sacrificial speaks volumes to me and encourages me in my daily walk as well. But, even if a relationship fails, it is OK because Christ will forgive and restore.

    We cannot live up to the expectation in our marriages that we will “role model,” for the world, the relationship between Jesus and the Father because we are not Jesus. Jesus never had to forgive the father and the Father never had to worry about Jesus getting his priorities mucked up.

    As for this comment “Criticism runs both ways on this blog.I can’t tell you how many times the words “naive”, “blind”, and others have been implied in my direction because I don’t consider Chandler, Conferences, book sales, etc to be the kind of heresy that is often painted at TWW.”

    In my comment, I was speaking directly to your last comment which was broad swath. Secondly, I have never said it was a “heresy” to sell books. I just think it is a way to make money and we should stop spiritualizing that we are changing the world with each book that is being pumped out at rates that exceed the speed of light. People rarely read their Bibles. My guess is that most of these book are read even less.

    Finally, I think it is important for people to express their opinions. I think it is most important that the Calvinista brigade listen carefully to how they are being perceived on the outside of their chummy little band. Perhaps they are just being unfairly painted. But, then again, there are so many examples, there is probably some truth in their somewhere.

  182. Numo
    The “just a girl” statement is used by quite a few of these guys. Their women refer to themselves as “girls” as well-may I point you to the infamous “Girlltalk” blog. I wonder how Chandler would like to be referred to that boy who is the pastor?

  183. Seeker
    When truth is hard to hear, then is it really spoken? “But regardless, Chandler spoke the truth in the matter, no matter how abrasive it came across.”

  184. Numo
    Goodness knows we are open to criticism, something that really upsets the other Calvinista bloggers that do not allow dissenting opinions. We women can take it like a man-I wonder if they understand that?

  185. “HMMMMM….Changes the perspective a bit when we see it in its’ full context? ”

    Not at all. He calls her a “girl” twice and refers to himself as a “man”. He is actually very confusing and is starting to sound a lot like the flowery, confusing Piper. And why people are so confused and simply walk away trying to match the puzzle pieces of their confusing doctrine.

    Not only that but if you listen to all their teaching he actually contradicts himself….girls have a “role” in marriage you know. But don’t expect much from the man? You are nothing but his support and help him along but he cannot complete you? Right.

    The woman’s whole purpose in marriage is to “complete the man” by supporting him totally in whatever he does. That is her “role”, her meaning for living. and she is just a “girl”.

    Someone mentioned earlier the “pawns” in God’s game connection here. I agree. This is the Calvinista view.

    “Wonder what Lauren would think about your criticisms on all this….Appearances can be decieving, but I would be careful before you “think you know” how Chandler loves his wife and what he thinks of her.”

    It does not matter what she thinks. I am surprised you are using that. I expect her to be very biased. She has bought into and supported the whole Calvinista thing. She is referred to as ‘just a girl’ by her husband so why should I take her seriously? He doesn’t.

  186. “I don’t necessarily like it…It weirds me out…But it is their marriage…I don’t know how “Matt truly feels about Lauren or vice versa, but I find it a bit odd when bloggers who barely know them start criticising and assuming what a couple feels about each other because the husband calls his wife a girl…”

    But this not about their personal relationship. You are changing the subject trying to deflect the real issue. This is about his very public teaching, the words he chose not once but several times and what it communicates to people.

    Obviously you have no problem with it or all the other stuff we have discussed. that makes me sad for you and yes, I think you are naive. So many are caught up with these gurus.

  187. Aunt Sally?

    I think we have been targeted in order to “disprove” that anything we say is worthwhile. It will not work. We make mistakes, so do they. So we are even. So, the castle stands!

  188. I earlier posted a definition of “Gospel”. No one has commented on it, so I suppose no one disagrees.

    One further part of the definition: “Gospel” is a noun and when misused as another part of speech, it has no meaning. There is a term that contains “Gospel”, “Gospel Music” which is a compound noun and is one of my favorite music genres. To go listen live, my spouse and I are usually the only two of our complexion in the audience, but we have fun and worship anyway.

  189. Dee,

    “Marriage is two sinners trying to figure out how to live with one another while learning how to forgive one another. The world is not looking for role models of submissive wives and patriarch husbands. They are looking at marriages to see how to keep them together in spite of the sinful nature of both of the involved parties.Our marriages should be examples of grace given to each other in spite of our sinfulness.”

    I don’t disagree with this…I think you are right..

    Ephesians 5 opens us up to walk in love for a specific reason, and then it offers on how one can live and interact with other people in our lives, including our husbands and wives.

    I believe “walking in love” as “Christ loved us” is basically a way to witness and point others to the love that Christ has for us in the Gospel…It is a witness opportunity. I believe in marriage, we have a potential witness opportunity.

    Now whether one follows a Comp viewpoint in this or Egalitarian is up to interpretation I suppose…

    The Calvinistas affirm the Comp viewpoint is that witness, you just affirmed a different type…This is why these reasons are secondary right?

    “In my comment, I was speaking directly to your last comment which was broad swath. Secondly, I have never said it was a “heresy” to sell books. I just think it is a way to make money and we should stop spiritualizing that we are changing the world with each book that is being pumped out at rates that exceed the speed of light. People rarely read their Bibles. My guess is that most of these book are read even less.

    Finally, I think it is important for people to express their opinions. I think it is most important that the Calvinista brigade listen carefully to how they are being perceived on the outside of their chummy little band. Perhaps they are just being unfairly painted. But, then again, there are so many examples, there is probably some truth in their somewhere”

    I think it is important too..but to be honest, I have no clue if the Calvinistas are paying attention to your blog or not…

    And I do believe there is truth that you and others paint here at times…I have affirmed that, but likewise, I have felt that things are often unfairly painted here as well too…Not necessarily by what you or Deb writes, but with some of the comments…

    And again, you certainly have your rights to express these things, no matter how I disagree or “feel” about it.

    Regardless of whose interpretation is right, I believe Ephesians 5 points us to live in a way with others that can potentially point others to the Grace of Christ…Love others as we have been loved..

  190. Arce –

    I am in total agreement with your definition of Gospel. I can’t stand the way the word is used today by people. I don’t like the way the word Biblical is used either. Both words are very often used to qualify or promote as “correct and/or pure” whatever concept comes after it. Most people would “never” disagree with what might be said or taught about the “whatever concept” now because they think they would be in conflict with the Gospel or they would be anti-Biblical. (No Christian wants those labels. It is sad that Christian leaders have actually said this to people.) It is a way to cut people off from thinking and evaluating. It is evil (IMHO) and is not the mark of a good teacher or leader who cares about people growing into maturity in God. (They only seem to want maturity if it fits their “mold” of maturity.) To me, it promotes people being spoon fed what their overlord wants them to eat. It also shows little faith that God is at work in a person refining them for His, and their own, good.

  191. But Ephesians 5 needs to be put into context, in particular, that there were many household codes of the day, and this one is so far more egalitarian than any of the others, it was a huge step in the direction of mutuality in marriage! So it should not be used to re-enslave women in the 21st century. As I have said, the husband is to be mutually “submitted” (bad translation, btw) to his wife per the preceding verse, then the wife “submitted” to “her own husband”. Perhaps the suggestion is not the word we focus on, the mis-translated “submitted” but “her own husband”, suggesting a lesser form of “submitted” to other men than the previous verse could be taken to mean.

    The “submitted” in this verse is closer to the idea that we should not be ego-driven in our relationships, but should hold others in higher regard than we do ourselves. If everyone does that, no one becomes a dictator. A woman should look up to her husband, as he should to her (preceding verse), and he should be willing to die for her, as well. It really goes back to Jesus’ teaching that no Christian should be “lording” it over another Christian, but we should all be servants of each other, holding their best interests above our own.

    Not easily lived, and impossible in a patriarchal or authoritarian structure. It basically only can occur in a place where all are equal within the community, and not some of lesser status.

  192. Dee,

    “When truth is hard to hear, then is it really spoken?”

    I would say yes..Sometimes the truth is hard to swallow..

    Chandler spoke the truth in a rather abrasive way…maybe he did so because his congregation is filled with young ladies and men who are consistently seeking someone to “complete them” other than Jesus…Maybe he felt the need to bring his point across in a rather abrasive way to get their attention..

    Jesus often spoke in a very abrasive way to those around him to bring his point across…The language he often used offended them so much that they sought to kill him..

    I agree with you however that Chandler could have been more delicate in how he presented this, but the truth still stands.

    Anon1,

    “Not only that but if you listen to all their teaching he actually contradicts himself….girls have a “role” in marriage you know. But don’t expect much from the man? You are nothing but his support and help him along but he cannot complete you? Right.”

    It contradicts itself in the way you perceive his teaching. I doubt he would say the women is “nothing” but support for the man..and guess what, he spends quite a bit of time discussing the role of men too…He NEVER says to not expect much from the man…

    Where has he ever said to not expect much from the man? He has said quite the opposite many times, even in that sermon that we are referring too.

    “The woman’s whole purpose in marriage is to “complete the man” by supporting him totally in whatever he does. That is her “role”, her meaning for living. and she is just a “girl”.”

    Again..Your perception of what he is saying..He never said the woman’s purpose is to only “complete the man”…This is you taking things out of context…again!

    “But this not about their personal relationship. You are changing the subject trying to deflect the real issue. This is about his very public teaching, the words he chose not once but several times and what it communicates to people.

    Obviously you have no problem with it or all the other stuff we have discussed. that makes me sad for you and yes, I think you are naive. So many are caught up with these gurus.”

    His ultimate point in that sermon, which you still have not seemed to comment about, was that a Man/Woman should not find their “completion” in each other, but God. That was his point. He is right.

    If you want to ignore the truth that he was bringing forth and focus on what he calls his wife and how he says certain things, then go right ahead. I changed the subject because the sentiment was already moving into how Chandler “demeans” his wife..I just thought Lauren might find that amusing..
    But that brings me to this point:

    Go ahead and call me naive…That’s cool…But I feel sorry for you too…You are so cynical (I would say extremely cynical) that I think it has blinded you to the actual “good” that guys like Matt Chandler and others (including their churches) actually bring to the Kingdom of God.

    In fact, you have never, ONCE, in all of these conversations, acknowledged any good that Chandler can bring to the Kingdom…I at least acknowledged that he has made some mistakes…You have to be severely blind to not see that..

    Your continuous denial of that is sad, and quite frankly, disappointing considering you are his brother in Christ..(of course you may deny that too)…

    And one more thing….I am not as “caught” up in these gurus as you think I am…But I have explained that before as well..

    The vast difference between you and me, is your skepticism and cynical attitude has caused you to “write off” certain elements within the Body of Christ…

    Chandler is a part of that Body, and he has served the Kingdom well in many ways…He is a sinner..just like you…just like me…and he has made some mistakes, but he by no means has 0 credibility as you say he does.

    But whatever…You can spout your cynicism all day long, and state your negative assessments (lacking alot of objectivity at times) until Kingdom comes…And when it does come…we will answer for all our sins..including Chandler, and Jesus blood will have proven to wash over those sins in those of us who “believe”, and he will welcome us with open arms into His Kingdom.

    I just hope that by then you might actually see the impact Chandler and others, including their churches, have made for the Kingdom..in a good way.

  193. “Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh…”

    Dee,

    “That ‘idiot’ riding the ass that day in Jerusalem, was none other than the Lord of All!  ” -Sopy

    b of good cheer!

    …keep up da good work!

    Vous êtes tout à fait impressionnant !

    S㋡py
    ___
    TWW – “Dinner Out, is a Go!”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vZvyxnTxuuk&feature=youtube_gdata_player

    Bonus: ”-Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass.” How quickly the cries of ‘Hosanna!’ were turned into ‘Give Us Another! ‘…but the Father said : this is my Son, Jesus, surely they shall receive Him?

    No?

    Another they will receive?

    Humm?

    The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes? 

    For they will feed on God’s pure words and sit down in the congregation safely, with no pastor to make them tremble.  My sorrow, turned to joy, because He is the one who holds my hand, He is the one who holds the lampstands, He is the one who says to the gates of hell, no further!

  194. Seeker
    I said:When truth is hard to hear, then is it really spoken?” You said: I would say yes..Sometimes the truth is hard to swallow..I would say that harsh and abrasive “truth” is not truth. The words in a message are only part of the message. How it is delivered is part of the truth. I also did some hospice work in my past. The oncologist could tell the person “You have a terrible cancer and you are going to kick the bucket within 6 weeks, no hope.” I was often left to deal with the aftermath.

    It is the truth but is our message supposed to be more, peppered with the love of Jesus? Truth is rarely accepted when it is said in an ugly fashion. One of my pastors once said that God is not concerned with the end result. He is a God of the process and is far more interested in how we get there.Love is important. And love is not really emphasized with many of the Calvinistas, is it? They produce a God who is chronically miffed off at us poor slugs and He is only interested in His own glory and darn it if it isn’t tied up with these ingrates. That is my opinion of much of what I am reading and seeing these days.

  195. Dee,

    “It is the truth but is our message supposed to be more, peppered with the love of Jesus? Truth is rarely accepted when it is said in an ugly fashion. One of my pastors once said that God is not concerned with the end result. He is a God of the process and is far more interested in how we get there.Love is important.”

    Dee, I understand what you are saying.

    Chandler should have stated his words better when he presented this..and I agree with you that love is important, but I am not quick to think that love was not included in this sermon.

    Just because it came across as a bit abrasive by no means implies that Chandler was not speaking in love towards the Village Church…

    Like I said, I think Chandler was stating this in a “tough” way to get their attention of the severity of the problem. You and I both know that many young singles are consumed with finding someone who completes them…sometimes this takes them away from finding their ultimate hope in God.

    I would say that this consuming problem often falls into marriage as well in the first few years, and when your spouse fails your expectations of “completing you”…problems arise that could ultimatley lead to Divorce. This is a serious problem, and Chandler was speaking to this serious problem in a serious way.

    Yeah, it was abrasive and bit “tough” on the ears, but I would disagree with you that truth would be ignored in the way he spoke. I have heard this sermon on podcast before, and I took the truth rather well…Others have heard this sermon with me and they took it rather well too.

    Like I said, even Jesus, with all of His Love, said some things intentionally at times that eventually ticked people off. He was tough, harsh even, in the truth he spoke to the people on certain occasions…This is why so many of the “crowds” stopped following him and his disciples questioned why he would say such things…Even in this, I believe Jesus was speaking in love.

    Point is…Sin is a serious issue, and I think it is necessary for Pastors/Teachers to speak boldly against sin at times…even if it comes across as “harsh”…

    Even so, I wish Chandler would have used a better phrase than “Lauren is just a girl”…and would have thought better about how he said this…Perhaps he regrets what he said…I would.

    “And love is not really emphasized with many of the Calvinistas, is it? They produce a God who is chronically miffed off at us poor slugs and He is only interested in His own glory and darn it if it isn’t tied up with these ingrates. That is my opinion of much of what I am reading and seeing these days.”

    I can’t speak for many of the Calvinista’s…but Platt and Chandler I can speak for…and yes Dee, they do emphasize the love of Christ…quite frequently I may add.

    You percieve them teaching such things above, I have never perceived that…

    They speak on God’s wrath, and are not ashamed to do so, many who incessantly claim to speak on God’s love barely speak on God’s wrath…I agree with the Calvinistas on this one..How can we even begin to speak on God’s love for us until we understand His holy wrath against us?

    But they also emphasize quite frequently the love of Christ…I am saddened that you think otherwise, I have been encouraged often by the sermons of Chandler and Platt and their emphasis of the grace of Christ…but I am also reminded that God is holy, who does not take sin lightly…This may come across as “God being miffed off” to many..

  196. Seeker –

    Your comment about Sopy’s “cutesy comments” was interesting to me. It seemed like you were comparing my comment about Candler using the term A29’s DNA being “cutesy” to Sopy’s style of writing on blogs. I don’t see them as similar at all.

    Sopy is not writing books, preaching, teaching, and going to conferences (not under the Sopwith name anyway!) telling people how a marriage should look or pointing to an institutional church saying “let’s replicate this.” Jesus said to “follow me” (replicate him). Chandler is very public and wants a public audience to pay attention to what A29 is doing. The point is, who or what is Chandler directing people to? The “way” to do things or the person (Jesus Christ) who will bring about a changed life. In his statement about A29, I read very little about Jesus.

    PS – If you go back and look at Sopy’s comments you might find that he/she shares the Gospel and scripture more than anyone on this blog.

    PSS – I don’t think Matt Chandler, you, me, or anyone “brings anything” to the Kingdom of God. I think we are transformed by the renewing of our minds and the Kingdom of God, by the work of the Holy Spirit, expands further into our lives as we live the Truth.

    PSSS – I am not cynical, upset, angry, or any such thing.

  197. Bridget2,

    “Your comment about Sopy’s “cutesy comments” was interesting to me. It seemed like you were comparing my comment about Candler using the term A29′s DNA being “cutesy” to Sopy’s style of writing on blogs. I don’t see them as similar at all.”

    No..I really wasn’t…Just referring back to Sopy’s “unique” way of posting..He/or She has a rather “cute” and “cryptic” way of bring his point across…

    ” Jesus said to “follow me” (replicate him). Chandler is very public and wants a public audience to pay attention to what A29 is doing. The point is, who or what is Chandler directing people to? The “way” to do things or the person (Jesus Christ) who will bring about a changed life. In his statement about A29, I read very little about Jesus.”

    A29 is a church planting organization. Chandler’s first post of many was to describe the A29 goal of churches planting churches…Which is not a bad thing.

    You won’t believe me, but Chandler consistenlty points people to Jesus…Often…But you would have to read a lot more than one little blog post, and you would have to listen to quite a bit of his sermons before you jump to that conclusion…You don’t have to take my word for it, but Chandler promotes Jesus just as much as anyone who loves Him.

    As far as His statement, he makes it rather clear the ultimate goal of “churches planting churches”

    From the website:

    “We are a network of churches that are theologically aligned and philosophically diverse. I pray that the Spirit would keep us all deeply dedicated to the word of God and walking in a glad submission to the Spirit, but A29 must not become a theological club where churches and plants get involved because of theological alignment without the desire to plant other like-minded churches. There are places for that, but we are a church planting network. May the Spirit draw men who share this passion and shine his face on us as we seek to see millions of people who are far from him reconciled to him through Jesus.”

    The whole reconciled to him through Jesus part….yeah…that sort of corresponds to the person Jesus who brings about a changed life.

    “PS – If you go back and look at Sopy’s comments you might find that he/she shares the Gospel and scripture more than anyone on this blog.”

    I never said he/she didn’t..That is certainly a good thing…and I commend said poster for that!

    “I don’t think Matt Chandler, you, me, or anyone “brings anything” to the Kingdom of God. I think we are transformed by the renewing of our minds and the Kingdom of God, by the work of the Holy Spirit, expands further into our lives as we live the Truth.”

    I agree with what you have said here, but I would add: we ourselves make an impact on this Kingdom, through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, as we take part in the Great Commission and make much of Jesus to the nations..

    The Body of Christ is part of the Kingdom of God..and we have been given a Great Commission by Jesus Himself to take part in the expansion of this body as we “make disciples” of all nations..

    That is what I mean by “bringing something” to the Kingdom.

    “I am not cynical, upset, angry, or any such thing”

    Good to hear!

  198. Seeker, Do you realize you spend a lot of time here translating for Chandler and parsing his meanings. Do you know him that well?

    He is a public communicator and paid to communicate things. It is his job. But I am finding there are a lot of people who need to tell us what the Calvinista really said. This sort of thing is on a lot of other blogs, too.

    In fact, I saw a whole thread where a YRR pastor (very young) tried to convince an older person that Al Mohler was including all NON Calvinists in the GC vid where he said: If you want to see the nations rejoice for Christ, Calvinism is the only place for you to go.

    How did he justify this? Well, obviously that older person believed some of the 5 pts so that made them a Calvinist.

    I really think that logic and reason have left the Calvinst crowd altogether. They are so busy defending their guru they don’t stop and think about the words. They are too busy trying to figure out how to defend them. It is a losing game they will have to give up some day.

  199. Anon1,

    “Seeker, Do you realize you spend a lot of time here translating for Chandler and parsing his meanings. Do you know him that well?”

    Maybe so.

    Do you realize you take his words (often times out of context), his actions (attending conferences, writing books), and his (and others) silence on the Driscoll situation to create your assumption that he has NO integrity and credibility?

    Do you realize you committ the latter while disregarding the fruit that can be found in his teaching, church, and life?

    I am not the only one “parsing” and “translating” his words. You and others are quite guilty to do the same to bring forth your assumptions as well…You take him calling his wife a “girl” and you assume that he is demeaning to his wife.

    You say that he does not consider his wife equal. You say that he claims the women’s role is to “complete the man”..You say that he claims for women to not “expect much from the men”, when that is not at all what he said…

    In addition to all this, you assume that his conference attending and book writing is a prideful, selfish ambition and not something that he does to make much of Jesus. Based on what, because other guys are like this?

    You also assume that he is an Authoritarian like Driscoll, when there is no evidence that he has committed the actions that Driscoll has committed.

    The only thing you and I agree with, is that he needs to speak up against Driscoll, but I would disagree with you that he fully supports everything Driscoll has done because of his silence and him not backing away from Driscoll…

    Point is: I don’t know Chandler that well, but I have listented to his teaching for the last 3-4 years. Hence why I “defend” him in light of some of these assumptions. Many times I speak up because I feel yours (and others) assumptions on him are in opposition to some things that can be seen from his teaching alone!

    Just curious…How often do you listen to his teaching? You seem to think you have him “pinned” down in your enlightened view from…what exactly? Maybe you just get all your information on him on a few blog posts and what is said about him on the blogs.

    Some quotes taken out of context? A sound byte? A youtube video? His partnership with Driscoll? Your experience with “guys like him”…How do you know he is what you say he is?

    I have listened to Chandler’s teachings for several years..I have had the opportunity to meet him and talk with him in person…I have heard others closer to him describe his humility and love for Jesus, why would they lie? IF he was not the latter, then I think we would have heard something by now from the Village…I can’t find a thing..

    I believe the man loves Jesus, I believe the man wants to make much of Jesus, I believe the man is not the authoritarian that you say he his, nor do I believe the man attends conferences because of some selfish or prideful pursuit..

    But silly me, I am the blind naive one….I cannot compete with your vast enlightened view on Chandlers intentions and motives..

    Regardless of what I believe he has done right…I also believe he has made some mistakes…He needs to speak out against Driscoll’s actions as the new head of A29…He hasn’t and he probablly won’t…

    He needs to learn from David Platt and tone down his abrasive approach at times…He has taken some things too far before in certain sermons and has gotten carried away with his description of things…

    I question the whole complimentarian position myself, but to be frank,I find the whole debate to be mind boggling and tiring….I don’t know where to land on this yet, so I can’t fully say Chandler is making a “mistake” following this doctrine.

    When I defend Chandler, it is because I think the accusations and assumptions tend to blow things way out of proportion, confuse and take things out of context due to generalities or something else, and ultimately paint a picture of Chandler that is entirely unfair in my eyes…Maybe this is why I have to give a different take, or “parse and translate” as you say, his words…

    I give this different take based on the context I have had listening to his sermons over the last 3-4 years, listening to him at conferences, meeting him in person, following his trial with cancer, and reading things that he has written..

    I barely know him, but I feel like I know him enough to bring a defense against some things that have been said about him around here…

    “It is a losing game they will have to give up some day.”

    Maybe so…I have debated quite frequently with myself to just leave this matter alone at TWW…I thought bringing another side to the discussion on Chandler and others would be helpful to the conversation on this blog…I even had this weird idea that some might actually see the good that has occurred in his life in regards to the Body of Christ…

    Instead, there is the refusal to acknowledge this…only an acknowledgement that he has 0 credibility…That is fine..you have every right to feel this way..

    Maybe it is fast approaching the time where I leave you and others to continue your assumptions without a different take…

  200. Seeker, I cannot get through your long comments anymore. I apologize. All I can say is YES to the first few lines. And all I can go by are his very public words and actions (His long time support and partnering with Driscoll for one).

    If he has some secret life I do not know about that would eradicate all that, then he should let us in on it. Perhaps he has let you in on it has all been a big hoax? He really did not say all those things? Or perhaps he redefined words and did not let us in on it?

    One thing the guru’s I was around would always tell people is: Think the best. Therefore they were free to do what you are doing here and make it look like everyone was just taking their words out of context, thinking the worst, etc. Very clever. But I take their words and actions at face value. Only the naive do not.

  201. “Nuff’in Stuff’in…”

    Psssst!

    … Youze “StrawMan” is loos’in itz stuff’in….

    (grin)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sSFQy_cLvLU&feature=youtube_gdata_player

    Yo! Seeker,

    Hurry up!  -snicker-

    We’ze a way’tin fer da tee-shirt…idea!

    (grin)

    hahahahahahaha

    S㋡py

    The Chordettes – “Mister Sandman”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9xMCNmUaGko&feature=youtube_gdata_player

    Bonus: (Comic relief)  “Old Lace n’ & a can O’ Mace…”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ev_v3xgxMTg&feature=youtube_gdata_player

  202. IMO, Fight Church is using it’s non-profit status to run a very successful business. No way this is a legit church.

  203. Seeker,

    I value what you have to say, although I may not agree. I also acknowledge you know Chandler much better than I do- which is only via sermons and articles, blogs, what I can read about him and by him…who he associates with and promotes, etc.

    I would like to ask you a question which would help me to understand better. Are you also “Reformed and Charismatic” like Chandler is? (I mean to inquire about the Charismatic part…I gathered you are Reformed.)

    Thanks, seeker.

  204. I don’t have anything of value to add to this dialogue. (I keep on reading one comment, think “That’s exactly right!”, then I read the response and think “well, that does change things” , or “I hadn’t thought of it that way” …on it goes.) I really don’t know much of anything about Matt Chandler, though I have big problems with his tacit approval of the shenanigans at Mars Hill.

    I do think that Seeker provides good and valuable pushback generally (for me, in my head) that keeps me from turning people who have very different doctrines/values/mannerisms than I do into cardboard cutouts. I don’t want to be consumed with an us/them mentality, or become more interested in personal vindication for “my team” than in whatever Jesus is doing in a certain situation. I want to be able to give John Piper a heartfelt hug at the end of our long road on earth. I want to give Mark Driscoll a big noogie. (In love. ;) )

    Are these individuals and I still brothers and sisters? I really want to believe so. Is it possible that some of these leaders have gone beyond the pale? It is, and we can warn other people about their theology (and ridicule it, if it begs for ridicule), and we must call them out on their hypocrisy and mistreatment of others. But I still want to believe the best. I want to pray for restoration, and repentance, and humilty, For them and for me.

  205. Anon1,

    I don’t know what else to tell you…If you don’t want to take the time to read my responses (no matter how long) then there is not much I can do for you here, but I tell you what, let me summarize it the best way I possibly can:

    I take ALL his words and actions at face value…I see A LOT of good, and I see some critical problems that raises concerns.

    I would say you take only a FEW of his words and actions at face value….(Pretty much the ones that reveal the critical issues, while you ignore the good to support your disdain against the Calvinistas)

    This wouldn’t be so bad if you would at least acknowledge some of the good things that Chandler has done..But you refuse to do this, crying out, “He has NO credibility”…

    This tells me:

    1. You have never really listened to Chandler’s teaching outside of the blogs and the occasional “ripped out of context” snippet of a sermon that “proves” to you he has no credibility.

    2. You are determined to ignore the good that you have seen because your past experience tells you that all Calvinista’s=Worthless, No Credibility…Thus the “good” must be false.

    3. His association/partnership with Driscoll shows you that Chandler has no credibility…(That would be called a generality to me)….

    All of the above things I would disagree with you on…I am just wondering how much of Chandler you have paid attention too outside of the negative over the years?

    Have you even bothered to listen to his teaching on a regular basis?

    Anyway, I explained all of the above and more in my previous post if you care to go back and look….Hopefully this length will cater to your needs a bit more…

  206. Sopy,

    The Wizard of Oz sort of gave me the creeps over the years…never liked the flying monkeys and all…. ;)

    PS: Good point about the Straw Men, been seeing alot of those pop up on occasional times at TWW…

  207. Diane,

    Appreciate what you said, and it is ok that we don’t agree.

    I guess I am just baffled as to how so many can deny seeing things that is so pretty clear to see…but I am sure you all feel the same way about my perspective.

    To answer your question,(it might be a bit long, hope that is ok) I have been on a progressive journey over the years in where I stand on the whole “reformed” issue.

    First let me say that I am Charismatic in the sense that I believe in the Indwelling of the Holy Spirit, the work of the Holy Spirit and the Gifts of the Holy Spirit. I believe the Holy Spirit can do as much as was done in the past, and that the Spirit has by no means “diminished” today.

    As far as the reformed issue itself, I have wrestled with the 5 points of Calvinism time and time again, and I am not fully sold on it, nor am I adamently against it. I probablly lean closer to it than I have in previous years, but I am not dogmatic on claiming it as THE DOCTRINE to follow.

    I have seen the debate on both sides of the spectrum when it comes to the Five Points and Reformed Doctrine in general. For me personally, I find it hard to fully accept the full meaning of “limited atonement”…That is probablly the one pill that is toughest for me to swallow.

    I am still seeking the word and praying on this doctrinal issue, but I don’t place this as a priority in my life, and frankly, I am at peace about the fact that I don’t have this issue and others all “figured out.”

    I care much more about the “practical” side of the Church. If you don’t mind, I am going to open up a bit so hopefully you can better understand where I am coming from.

    To be continued on the next post:

  208. Diane,

    Continued from above:

    I live in a small community in Southeastern MS. Alot of people say this, but it is pretty much the Buckle of the Bible Belt…

    Poverty, Drug Problems, Teen Pregnancy, Broken Homes, low Education, and a plethora of other issues are rampant in our community..as well as thousands upon thousands of “unchurched” people…We only have about 20,000 people in our entire county.

    The sad thing is, we live in a community with a church on almost every corner..The latter problems are not addressed as they should be from our churches…

    It is mostly a religious club that is being promoted all too often, not the Body of Christ…

    These churches are divided amongst various denominational lines, and they have a plethora of other issues amongst themselves as well..Racism is still a big part of the South in my area within the Church…You would be surprised at how many churches are divided amongst racial lines…This, combined with an “apathetic religious club” mentality means more problems for our community.

    I am fortunate to be in one of two churches in my community that is not divided on racial lines…we are not perfect by a long shot, but we have taken a hard look on how to address these needs I mentioned above..

    So, we try to get involved and help the community around us, as we share the hope of the Gospel..I have seen beautiful things take place as a result of God healing, working, and moving in people’s lives through these ministries…

    I say all this to say that the latter is what I care most about…My heart is in this..I just met with my “mission team” at the Church this past Sunday to discuss how to better serve our area with the Love of Christ and the Good News of the Gospel in the coming months and next year…This is what I care about the most, not Tulip.

    I am not drawn to listen to Matt Chandler and David Platt because of Tulip…I am drawn to them because of their love for Jesus, the Gospel, and their heart for the Church to serve a broken world.

    This is the good I so often refer too, and this is why I am not willing to claim Chandler has no credibility in my eyes.

    I am intrigued by the doctrine they teach, and their teaching (not necessarily Calvinism) has helped me in some significant times in my life as I have shared before in here…

    As I have tried to explain before to others…I am not so caught up with these “gurus” as people percieve that I am..I am not even fully aligned with their doctrine..

    I defend them so persistently because I see a different side of these guys than what is presented all too often on TWW—and I want share my perspective of that side…Some think this is naive to think anything other than the negative perspective of them, I think otherwise..

    Hope this gives you a better understanding of where I am coming from..

  209. Rene,

    Thank you for a kind, objective, and fair response.

    I too hope for the things you mentioned…and I agree, we need to call out the hypocrisy and mistreatment of others..

  210. “Hope this gives you a better understanding of where I am coming from..”

    Thank you, seeker, for taking the time to write all of that. It does give me a better understanding. I am trying to take special note of those with whom our so called leaders promote and link arms. I am looking mainly at the charismatic influences (contemplative spirituality/mysticism) and the roots of those with whom they may promote either now or in the future.

  211. Rene
    Awesome. But a noogie for Driscoll??? I would definitely wait until he is in his glorified body or his guards might take you down!

  212. Seeker
    You said “I believe the Holy Spirit can do as much as was done in the past, and that the Spirit has by no means “diminished” today.” I believe the Holy Spirit is alive and working today. However, I do not see things such as “raising from the dead” and people vanishing and showing up elsewhere. What is your thinking on this.

  213. Dee,

    I would be cautious if someone told me that the Holy Spirit raised someone from the dead or “vanished and showed up elsewhere”….

    I think all too often these claims are promoted in light of some extreme charismatic “revivalist” circles, and it is an eccentric lie to promote an agenda.

    However, I want to be clear about something, I do not ever want to deny something that God has done in the past, and could very well do today, just because it seems a bit far fetched for me.

    I am not dogmatic to say that the Holy Spirit, who obviously has done some miracoulous things since the advent of the church has started, will cease to do some of those miracoulous things.

    I obviously think those miracles were occuring frequently during that time to promote the spread of the Gospel and the expansion of the Church, but to say that it is impossible for it to happen today in certain contexts in the world is hard to come by.

    I could be wrong though, and I always edge on the side of caution on these things…

  214. Seeker and Dee,

    I wonder if these sorts of events happen more often in contexts outside of North America? I think many of us have heard some remarkable stories from mission fields and in situations that are dire in a way that we don’t often experience here.

    I know, we have to acknowledge the possibility of hyperbole and urban myth, but I do think that our western worldview and affluence may be an enormous stumbling block too.

  215. Seeker
    Do you really want to get into dueling “things that were said?” Would you like me to do the narcissistic zero thing in response? Then you do another and I respond to that? Then I say he is away from his church a lot, you disagree. I don’t like some of his friends then you conjecture he is “trying to change things.” Frankly, this is useless. I once did a page with all the idiotic things Driscoll has said. It is not enough. I then get people who “prove” he said all these other things and I am taking them “out of context.” You are doing a fine job of shoring up Chandler. We are doing a decent job showing the problems with this movement. There is a reason that our numbers are going up. Perhaps it is all an attack of the evil one and everyone who has a story obviously is mistaken, stupid, or not as insightful. I don’t think so.

    There are problems in the Calvinista circles. Chandler runs with Driscoll, high fiving him on the stage, etc. He also hangs with Mahaney and seems to have no problem with the panoply of these guys and their teachings. I don’t like his (and their) views on “girls.” People have been hurt. This blog exists to help those who have been on the receiving end of all of the wonderful glory of the Calvinista”teachings”that we obviously misunderstand.

    I have read Chandler, Chan and Platt. I have even attended Platt’s church on several occasions. I have complimented both Chan and Platt via a post. But, apparently, that is not enough for you. So, go ahead, prove your points.You have a forum here to do so.But, I will continue to frustrate you and you will continue to say that we are all wet. Whoo Hoo-great fun.

  216. “I know, we have to acknowledge the possibility of hyperbole and urban myth, but I do think that our western worldview and affluence may be an enormous stumbling block too.”

    I agree that our western worldview may be a stumbling block..

    I have read some amazing stories over the years, especially in the 10/40 Window, of the Holy Spirit’s work..

    It is a sharp contrast to what is often experienced here for us..

  217. OK… that whole 10/40 Window thing is seriously suspect, imo. Invented by people like George Otis, Jr. to promote his own agenda; ditto for other “stars” of the so-called Third Wave/New Apostolic Reformation.

    I’ve spent more time than I’d have liked around people who believed and practiced so-called strategic level spiritual warfare and have to say that the amount of cognitive dissonance is shocking – or should be, to those who believe in such things. (Generally – in my experience – very well-educated folks.)

    Why can I say this? Because, for a while, I was one of them, though definitely not on the far fringes.

    The superstition is overarching; the misinterpretation of the Bible – ditto.

    I know people who “prayer walk” in D.C. every year, trying to “reclaim” it for God. They speak of how buildings and boundary stones were dedicated by godless Masons – not only that, basically dedicated to Baal (aka the devil), and they keep throwing prayer after prayer at the so-called “demonic curses over the city.”

    Thing is – NOTHING changes. And their rituals of prayer remind me a LOT of things they claim to be against (i.e., Wicca, etc.).

    I could go on, but will stop here for now, except to say that C. Peter Wagner, Otis and their ilk have done a great deal of harm and seem to think nothing of it – right down to their claims that they “killed” both Princess Diana and Mother Teresa with their prayers. (Yes, that’s true; Wagner has written about it and the books in which he discusses the so-called “Queen of Heaven spirit” are still in print.)

  218. I would further add that one of the “leaders” of the D.C.-area prayer walking, etc. thing tried to “curse” me – quite literally.

    1st time, he inveighed against me with the curses listed (against Israel, if they don’t follow God) in Deuteronomy.

    Second time, he was angry that I ***used a cane*** (which I had needed for a while; don’t anymore). He claimed that I would die younger than I should.

    Both times, I was in total shock that this individual would say such things – things that I did not believe in then, nor do I now.

    I had known this man (the “pastor” of That Church, the one that kicked me out) as a reasonable individual, but he has deep roots in discipleship/shepherding stuff as well as in early (1950s and forward) spiritual warfare circles, and he was combining that with calvinista harshness back in the late 90s-early 00s.

    It was shaming, scary and absurd – and kind of like a scene from a horror movie, both times.

  219. Dee @ 1:41 P.M.

    I am assuming your response was meant for something I said on a different post in regards to me not agreeing that ALL Calvinistas show a “doom and gloom” gospel.

    I am not trying to duel here. And yes, you have revealed quite a few problems with the Calvinista movement, including Chandler himself…I agree with some of these problems you cite, and I by no means discount the stories that have been told..(Still waiting on the abusive stories from the Village and Brook Hills though)..

    Revealing problems is a good thing, but in your zeal to do so, I think you and others at times claim generalities that I think can be lacking..

    This is why I responded to what you said…By the way, I am not implying that you are stupid, mistaken, or not insightful…I am disagreeing with you…Sorry it is not the fun you were hoping for…(Although I have been accused of being naive)…

    I have no doubt your points are valid in certain contexts, and I have not doubt that abuse has occurred from certain Calvinista’s…It is good to talk about this, and it is good to help those who have been abused…

    I just want to show that not “all” abuse and not “all” teach “doom and gloom”…Not all are wounded by Calvinistas..I have tried my best to show that, and then you respond with this.

    I appreciate your post on Platt and Chan…but here is my question..You claim them Calvinistas, you cite the good things that they have done, and then in another post you claim that Calvinistas teach doom and gloom, you even go as far to say that this is NOT the Gospel…..Really? You are going there?

    How else am I to interpret things when you make these generalities? Your statements make it sound like ALL Calvinists preach “doom and gloom”, “False Gospel Heresies”..when I see that Platt, Chan, and Chandler do not..

    I disagree, and I even took the effort to show you why I disagree, but do not assume I am trying to attack your intelligence because I disagree.

  220. Seeker
    The Gospel is the current word of choice by the NC. It is Gospel this and Gospel that, including Gospel smoking cessation (yes, it does it exist).When a preacher claims to preach the Gospel but ignores the freedom of the Resurrection, then I say they are not preaching the full Gospel.Yes, when I hear about the abuse that some of the people here have suffered at the hands of some of the ministries that we have discussed, some of which are part of the tight circles of the Calvinista honchos, then I contend that the Gospel is not being preached.

    As for Chandler and Platt, since they are involved in Acts 29, and sign onto the complementarian nonsense that we are hurting the our culture by not following the mandates of its version of “biblical” gender roles and consider this a primary distinction, which they do, then yes, they are still Calvinistas but I may like them a bit more than say Mahaney or Driscoll.

    I did a post on one abusive story from Chandler-calling someone a narcissistic zero. I still don’t like it and believe it reveals the fact that Chandler does not believe that he, himself, is a zero.

  221. Seeker – In all fairness, while you may not be “trying to duel,” I feel like a lot of your posts come across as dueling (or refutation, or whatever).

    Not trying to stifle you or your comments – just reflecting back how it looks to me. Others’ mileage may vary. :)

  222. “I did a post on one abusive story from Chandler-calling someone a narcissistic zero. I still don’t like it and believe it reveals the fact that Chandler does not believe that he, himself, is a zero.

    Dee-
    When you listen to that audio, which I did again a couple of days ago, Chandler pauses a bit before he delivers his angry words as if he was hesitating. I believe he could have controlled himself, yet chose not to and made the decision to be angry and insulting.

    (It reminded me of a video clip of MD yelling at his crowd about something-but I forget the context.) I also recalled Chandler saying, “I like angry” when talking to Furtick in an ER video about preaching. I suppose it is a style that suits him? Maybe his young church crowd likes that? He seems angry to me- abrupt and sarcastic- and his style of preaching does not minister to me.

  223. @ numo-

    “The superstition is overarching; the misinterpretation of the Bible – ditto.

    I know people who “prayer walk” in D.C. every year, trying to “reclaim” it for God. They speak of how buildings and boundary stones were dedicated by godless Masons – not only that, basically dedicated to Baal (aka the devil), and they keep throwing prayer after prayer at the so-called “demonic curses over the city.”

    I had some friends who went to a hyper-charismatic spiritual warfare “gonna claim the city for Christ” church like that…some extended family still go there. They are so sadly deceived. One friend told me she could never go into a Pier One Imports store because of all the statues there that have evil spirits on them. She could feel their presence and then would have to “go to battle” against them.

    She also got very freaked out whenever birds would come close to her, as she was convinced they were signs from God that the Holy Spirit was trying to show her something and then she would fret and fret about what she was supposed to see that she was not seeing. Everything is a sign from God. Don’t even get me started on how their beliefs paralyze their speech. They are prisoners of their own mouths. Can’t say this…don’t dare say you are sick, don’t let the enemy steal this or that…decreeing and declaring this or that…just horrible.

  224. Dee,

    If a preacher ignores the freedom in the Resurrection, then I agree they are not preaching the full Gospel…

    I could be wrong, but I have perceived that the one’s I have spoken of have preached the full Gospel..I don’t think they have ignored this freedom..

    As far as the Narcissitic Zero comment, he stepped way to far, went way overboard…

    He was wrong, sinful, and I hope he knows it. I think he got angry, as we all do sometimes, to criticism that might be directed at us…

    He could have done a lot better here, and I wish he would have done so..He may not consider himself a zero, and there may be a lot of pride in him..it is hard to say, but if he does, then I believe he will be making more headlines like Driscoll has made in the coming years.

  225. Diane
    I have heard that audio.Some people were really irritated that I pointed it out. There seems to be a thread in this crowd for angry putdowns. Driscoll is the king, as is Furtick and Noble and these guys all hand around with the rest of these dudes who appear to be adopting their style. They act more like drill sargeants. Now, I need to go prepare for the rebuttal. :)

  226. Dee-

    Did you happen to read the post at THE SUMMIT church about their new sex abuse policy? It sounds good…yet ya gotta wonder- why are they creating this SART (sex abuse response team)? They need one?? Like–a Sunday School bullying prevention team…or a spiritual abuse support team? Anyway, I suppose it is good for PR but it sure is unclear and rather controlling. ??

    http://www.bradhambrick.com/beyondprevention.

  227. “They act more like drill sargeants. Now, I need to go prepare for the rebuttal”

    :). No rebuttal this time, the guys you mentioned act like Drill Sargeants in many ways, and in the case of Chandler, he deserves this in light of his narcissistic Zero comment…

    He can certainly sound angry at times on certain issues he speaks on, and has taken it too far on what you mention above… He is also witty in his approach at times, which may rub some the wrong way..I personally find it funny..

  228. I know people who “prayer walk” in D.C. every year, trying to “reclaim” it for God. They speak of how buildings and boundary stones were dedicated by godless Masons – not only that, basically dedicated to Baal (aka the devil), and they keep throwing prayer after prayer at the so-called “demonic curses over the city.”

    Making Magick?

    Somebody should have turned these guys on to D&D instead. Then they can play high-level Magic Users and Clerics casting spells against the monsters.

    And when the Spanish Inquisition rolled on a Witchcraft accusation (which they seldom ever did), the actual charge was Heresy: Attributing Too Much Power to The Devil.

    And a lot of these Spiritual Warfare types act like the Devil is more powerful than God, and if it weren’t for them and their Spiritual Warfare, God would be defeated. Or maybe they’ve made the Devil so powerful that deep down inside they’re scared they’re on the losing side…

    I had some friends who went to a hyper-charismatic spiritual warfare “gonna claim the city for Christ” church like that…some extended family still go there. They are so sadly deceived. One friend told me she could never go into a Pier One Imports store because of all the statues there that have evil spirits on them. She could feel their presence and then would have to “go to battle” against them.

    Making Mighty Magick…

    Remember the Demon-Possessed Cabbage Patch Dolls on 700 Club some 20-30 years ago?

    She also got very freaked out whenever birds would come close to her, as she was convinced they were signs from God that the Holy Spirit was trying to show her something and then she would fret and fret about what she was supposed to see that she was not seeing.

    Isn’t that called “Reading the Omens”? And I heard the Thuggee also used that exact omen — the approach of birds — to divine the will of Kali as to who to kill.

    Wasn’t one of the Roman Empire’s beefs about this “Christian” movement was that they weren’t superstitious enough to be a REAL religion?

  229. I could go on, but will stop here for now, except to say that C. Peter Wagner, Otis and their ilk have done a great deal of harm and seem to think nothing of it – right down to their claims that they “killed” both Princess Diana and Mother Teresa with their prayers. (Yes, that’s true; Wagner has written about it and the books in which he discusses the so-called “Queen of Heaven spirit” are still in print.) — Numo

    They killed Princess Di and Mother Teresa with their prayers. As in they prayed for them to die and they died. (Were those prayers or spells?)

    Isn’t hexing someone with a death curse commonly called Witchcraft? (And I’m NOT talking about Wiccans.)

    Also, most of the time in the past where I’ve heard the term “Queen of Heaven” used like that, it was usually an attack on St Mary. Give ‘em five years, and it’ll probably refer to Princess Celestia from My Little Pony instead.

    I would further add that one of the “leaders” of the D.C.-area prayer walking, etc. thing tried to “curse” me – quite literally. — Numo

    As in he tried to put a Hex on you.

    As said above, isn’t that Witchcraft?

  230. “I am not drawn to listen to Matt Chandler and David Platt because of Tulip…I am drawn to them because of their love for Jesus, the Gospel, and their heart for the Church to serve a broken world.”

    Seeker, Please….I beg you. Be “drawn” to Christ. That is part of the whole problem…people are looking for gurus and they are finding them as talking heads they don’t even know! Jesus Christ said he was sending the best teacher– the Holy Spirit. I really fear for this generation that is so bent on following celebrities. It is like we brought Hollywood into Christianity. That is really my big problem with all this. I see so much of it from the YRR crowd especially. They will claim they don’t but they are– following man. And it is one reason they do not see the problems. They are seeing things through the filters of these guys and what they teach. I am not angry with you for being naive…or not seeing the problems with not only the associations but the partnering and promoting. I am concerned. You are one of thousands and thousands. They cannot be celebrities without people like you. And it is a big sin trap for them.

  231. HUG – right you are!

    The other term I’ve seen is “imprecatory prayer” (to describe praying for bad things to happen to someone).

    Diane – I ehar you, though thankfully, I was not that far gone. but I *was* fearful of many things, and overly superstitious. It’s taken the better part of a decade for me to be able to see that for what it is and put it aside.

    Now I can watch “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” reruns and enjoy them – the funny parts, at least. The show balanced serious and silly pretty well.

  232. HUG – if you remember the Cabbage Patch doll panic, you must surely also recall the “My Little Pony is demonic” idiocy as well…

    Oh, and “Transformers are demonic.” Not sure why, but that’s something I heard from the pulpit back in the mid-80s.

    Come to think of it, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle was highly suspect, too.

  233. Anon1,

    I really appreciate your concern for me, as well as others, and your convictions behind it.

    I understand your fears…I really do, but I don’t know what else to tell you other than I AM following Jesus and not man. Man is not my Savior. There is no “good news” in man. There is no Redemption foundm in man. There is no Resurrection found in man.

    I don’t look to Chandler, Platt, and Chan for my salvation, and until I am convinced that the “primary” things they teach contradict the word of God, I have no reason to stop listening to their teaching.

    I know you will not believe my words when I say that.. I hope you at least hear me when I say that I appreciate your concerns, but they are not needed on my part…I also understand the only way that you could fully understand the latter is by you REALLY knowing me, and that is impossible..(One of the drawbacks of communicating with people via the internet)..

    I just know in my heart that I am doing everything I can to follow Jesus, I try listen to the Holy Spirit’s guidance as I read and study His word, and I listen to the counsel and advice to people who are more mature in the faith than I that I know PERSONALLY in my life..I also do everything I can to impact the world around me for Christ..as I have mentioned above…

    I do not find me listening to their podcasts, or reading the occasional book written by these guys, to be in opposition to me following Christ as mentioned above.

    I listen to these guys because in many ways, they encourage/edify me to pursue Christ harder, to appreciate the Good News of Christ more, and to serve Christ better due to their passion for the latter things…They are not alone in this edification..

    They are a bonus in my journey that helps in my pursuit of Christ…many other things help as well…

    I have told you before, and obviously not convinced you, that I see the problems of the associations/partnerships with these guys in relation to Driscoll and others…

    I just have not fully reacted to it in the way you have..Perhaps one day I will…One day I may eat all my words that I have written on here as I come to the conclusion that these guys are the way that has been presented here…

    Thanks again for your concern.

  234. HUG – right you are!

    The other term I’ve seen is “imprecatory prayer” (to describe praying for bad things to happen to someone). — Numo

    “OH GREAT CHEMOSH! O GREAT BAAL! BRING DEATH AND DESTRUCTION UPON THESE MY ENEMIES!”
    — Some Cecil B DeMille Bible Spectacle, just before a considerably-sanitized child sacrifice to Baal-Chemosh

  235. HUG – if you remember the Cabbage Patch doll panic, you must surely also recall the “My Little Pony is demonic” idiocy as well… — Numo

    They say that a dying horse makes a terrifying scream. I have no wish to hear that scream from the throats of Fluttershy and/or Rarity as they burn at the stake courtesy of some Witchfinder-General. And any Witchfinder-General who tried would have to get through a couple thousand Bronies (adult MLP fans) first.

    Oh, and “Transformers are demonic.” Not sure why, but that’s something I heard from the pulpit back in the mid-80s.

    Come to think of it, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle was highly suspect, too. — Numo

    Here’s the weirdest I’ve heard along those lines, back when I was listening to Xian radio back in the Eighties:

    Spiritual Warfare preacher-type was being interviewed about his book. Started out with the usual denunciations as Satanic — He-Man/Masters of the Universe and D&D. Then he switched to Thundercats as “Egyptian Paganism” instead of the usual “encouraging bestiality”. He ended up Proving from Scripture (TM) (with proof-text zip codes) that Aslan was a Satanic False Christ and C.S.Lewis was obviously demon-possessed. (To the interviewer’s credit, you could tell he wasn’t taking the guy seriously by the time he’d gotten to this point.)

    Ever since, I’ve called that approach “Aslan-is-the-Antichrist Syndrome”. And I understand the Cosmic Lion of Narnia gets very soggy and hard to light when you call him Tash.

  236. Seeker
    The concern of many who find their way to this blog is the pain that they have suffered at the hands of many who proclaim the Calvinista doctrine. This blog is for them. It is a place to say “What, you too? I thought I was the only one.” You have difficulty understanding this because you have not been there, yet.

    Until a few years ago, I thought everything was hunky dory and that people who complained about churches were overreacting. Until that time, I had been to some marvelous churches with one exception-Ed Young Jr. So I thought he was an anomaly (a major anomaly on the order of space/time for those who watch Star Trek). Then, as I contemplated starting this blog with Deb, roadblocks kept occurring until one day something absolutely horrific happened.I was suddenly subjected, along with some others, to some incredibly bad behavior on the part of a group of Reformed leaders. It involved pedophilia, secrecy, discipline and even chasing me to another church.

    Before you pull the “bitter” card, I want you to know that the experience was God’s plan for me. I needed to not only see it, but to feel it, deep down in my soul. I am now grateful for the experience and would do it all over again for the sake of the lesson. In fact, I am stronger and happier in my faith now than I have been in my life. God helped me to experience what many people here have gone through. When someone writes to me and says “You will never believe what happened to me,” I can say, “Welcome to the Fellowship of the Wounded. I’ve been there.”

    I know that you do not understand this. You can’t until you see it in action. I didn’t understand it before. Recently, someone in the Bible study said that people who leave the faith after being hurt are just a bunch of whiners. I corrected her and said she had yet to experience such pain within the context of the church and that it is real and it is ugly.

    A short while ago, we received a note from a relatively well known Calvinista. He said that he had just woken up from a long slumber and realized how wrong he was. He is in the process of slowly letting people know that he is now on a different path. I feel for the guy. He will be ostracized, instead of loved and supported because I know what the typical response is. And the typical response of many Calvinistas is to get angry (narcissistic zero type angry).

    So, Seeker, you can put up sermon quotes to prove your point but it doesn’t work. Because way too many people have seen the divorce of doctrine and action. Many of these guys encourage harshness and control when it comes to people in process. Those people find their way here and this blog supports and loves them, unlike their former churches who are “oh so doctrinally correct” and treat the wounded like human detritus.

    Here’s a prediction for you, Seeker. I think God led you here to begin to understand the pain of many in the church. Prior to my experience, I had spent a number of years on an ExChristian blog trying to understand why people left the faith and why they were so angry. I tried to talk with them and got shot down, repeatedly. Slowly, I began to get into their experience and figured out ways to communicate with them on their terms, not mine.

    Thankfully, my faith was strong and I did not question that aspect of my life. I had done so many years before. God then gave me an experience to bring me into their world. It was a hard lesson but one for which I am grateful. Some day, God may ratchet up your “experience” and you may understand, first hand, what many here have gone through. When that day comes,(and I think it will), I hope you will drop old Dee a note. Just know this, you will be most welcome here.

  237. Some soggy worship leaders accuse Tashlan of being hard to light. Let us apes assure you, Tashlan is unyielding and volatile! He’s not-a-tame-lion! TM

  238. Seeker – I think Dee has written some wise words a few comments up.

    Listening to someone on the radio, TV or internet is *not* the same as being in their church. It can make all the difference in the world.

    Signed by
    numo, survivor of an abusive church, and friend to others who are in similar situations

  239. Dee,

    Thank you for your kind words explaining everything more deeply.

    And you are right, I have yet to experience the things that you and others have experienced as far as spiritual abuse from Calvinista leaders.

    I have experienced some hurt in my life within the Church, but it is quite unlike the experiences here. Perhaps one day I may share a bit about that.

    I may never experience hurt like you have, but I may understand these problems more deeply one day. I believe if you are right about doctrine being the source of the problem, then it will not be long before Chandler and Platt and others will make headlines like Driscoll has made for themselves. They are too much in the public eye for that not too happen, and someone will speak up, whether on a blog or something else. When that happens, then I think my understanding will increase.

    I am not embedded into these churches that you all have been a part of, so I am not prone to this type of hurt first hand. I can only speak for the testimonies that come out of those churches, and I have not heard of an abusive situation from the Village or Brook Hills yet….

    I hope my disagreement here has not led you and others to think that I do not care or am not sympathetic about your painful experiences…If it has, then I am truly sorry for that. It is hard for me to understand the broad generalizations that are ofen stated here, but perhaps you are right about them.

    I don’t know any of you, but I respect all of you as my brothers and sisters in Christ. I know your intentions are to help the wounded and hurting, and I don’t want any disagreement to get in the way of those intentions, no matter how I feel on certain things that may be said.

    For now, I am going to back off on my comments on how I feel about Chandler and Platt, my experience and what I see in them may be too limited to discuss these matters anyway. I am going to listen, watch, and wait. You have certainly opened my eyes on a lot of things, and I will be more cautious now as I listen to their teaching via podcast or if/when I read some of their books.

    I will also continue to observe more closely what direction Acts 29 will take, and how Chandler and others will relate to Driscoll from here on out.

    And Dee,

    Thank you for always allowing people to be welcome at TWW, no matter where they stand.

  240. Seeker – thanks so much for your concerned, very thoughtful post above.

    I hope you will continue to comment here. We’re all standing under the same umbrella (which is pretty darned big!)