"You see, we are not like the many hucksters who preach for personal profit. We preach the word of God with sincerity and with Christ's authority, knowing that God is watching us."
Did you miss James MacDonald's Vertical Tour where he hit 40 cities in 60 days? MacDonald, who pastors Harvest Bible Chapel near Chicago, has written a new book entitled Vertical Church. For two months he traveled around the country promoting it along with Vertical Church (V.C.) paraphernalia that can be purchased at the James MacDonald store. He is so serious about the concepts he puts forth in the book that he got a tatoo with the V.C. logo. That is NOT A JOKE! He shows it to Mark Driscoll in this video clip. Take a look…
Apparently, James MacDonald isn't the only one tatting his body with the V.C. logo. When the bus rolled through Dallas, the "team" had a day off and according to a Facebook entry, "A few guys on our team went out to get Vertical Church tattoos!"
I find it rather odd that the Vertical Church logo resembles military stripes.
Is that what MacDonald was up to during his book tour – assembling an army to promote his Vertical Church book and ideas? I guess these young impressionable guys can attend Mark Driscoll's Boot Camp and then go and tat their arms with the Vertical Church logo.
Not long after the interview with Driscoll, MacDonald spoke at the first ever Resurgence conference, which we discussed here. Now that Driscoll and MacDonald are no longer Council Members of The Gospel Coalition, it will be interesting to follow their associations with other Christian leaders like Greg Laurie, Rick Warren, etc. Perhaps another coalition is in the works???
Nonetheless, Harvest Bible Chapel is having serious financial troubles (link), and their pastor goes on a two-month bus tour? When MacDonald arrived back at his church after the tour had ended, he addressed his detractors on October 13-14. Here is a portion of that statement:
RESPONDING TO OUR DETRACTORS
"As we approach the Lord’s table today, let me say that we are back to reality. After 40 cities and almost 80 thousand people ministered to on the Vertical Church tour, we are gladly back to our church family—but also to the reminder that spiritual warfare is real, and that I have some pretty dedicated detractors.
I call them detractors, not enemies, not wolves, because I’m maintaining the hope that—though I believe they are misguided—I’m maintaining the hope that they do desire God’s best for our church. God knows the hearts of these detractors and I pray that when the truth is brought out they will relent in the distribution of error and adjust their opinions to fit the record of what has actually happened.
Regardless of what they choose to do, as we’re reminded today, we are following Jesus who taught us how to respond to those who oppose us. We are to love our detractors, we are to pray for them, and we are to seek to do them good. Now if Christ could do this while 100% innocent, then surely we can love and pray and do good to those whose criticism of us is certainly not entirely without merit.
This past Thursday night more than 200 of our Elders/Deacons/Pastors and spouses met together with more unity and mutual love than I have known in the history of our church. Our church has never been stronger—not financially, not in systems of accountability—our church has never been stronger in our commitment to obey the Scriptures and to make disciples for Christ. So it grieves me deeply that our church family is being subjected to attacks on me personally and upon our Elder board. Thankfully, our detractors are mainly outside of our church and entirely, totally outside our church’s leadership…"
James MacDonald appears to have a great relationship with C.J. Mahaney, who spoke at a conference at Harvest Bible Chapel in 2008.
Yes, it appears that C.J. Mahaney has had quite an impact on James MacDonald in recent years, and perhaps we are just beginning to see the fruit. We leave you with three short videos of James MacDonald and C.J. Mahaney featured on The Gospel Coalition website. We assume these are training videos for pastors or wannabe pastors who associate with TGC. Needless-to-say, we are extremely concerned about the future of Christendom with these kinds of leaders "in charge".
Lydia's Corner: Leviticus 7:28-9:6 Mark 3:31-4:25 Psalm 37:12-29 Proverbs 10:5