Mark Driscoll Ditches Calvinism for Charisma

Mark Driscoll teams up with Charisma and authors “Spirit-Filled Jesus”. So now he professes to be an authority on the Holy Spirit?

https://twitter.com/PastorMark?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor

Mark Driscoll – Twitter

What a difference a decade makes! During the summer of 2008, Dee and I began to realize that something was amiss in Christendom. We were just beginning to discover the power of the internet as a research tool. And through MANY hours of investigation, we discovered the New Calvinism movement and its key leaders.

One of those was Mark Driscoll, the founding pastor of a Seattle megachurch called Mars Hill. Everyone in the Neo-Cal movement knew about Driscoll. He was the co-founder of a church planting network called Acts 29, a founding council member of The Gospel Coalition, and a much sought after speaker at Calvinista conferences.

Even though Mark Driscoll used highly inappropriate language and over-sexualized his Biblical interpretations, among other problems, he was adored by the Neo-Cal crowd. We began expressing our concerns about Driscoll just a month after launching TWW.

Nearly four years ago, Mark Driscoll came under fire at Mars Hill, as 21 pastors at the church brought charges against him. As an investigation got underway, he stepped down. A couple months later, Driscoll resigned as lead pastor of the church he began 20 years earlier.

If you care to read about all of the problems with Driscoll, the Wikipedia article on him does a good job of explaining what happened.

The demise of Mars Hill came quickly, with Mark and Grace Driscoll relocating to Arizona. In August 2016, Driscoll became Senior Pastor of The Trinity Church in Scottsdale, where he continues to serve. Then in October 2017, he moved his blog over to Patheos.

As you can see, Mark Driscoll is methodically re-building his image and ministry. Now he’s getting back into the speaking circuit; however, he’s ditched the Neo-Cal crowd (that once worshipped and adored him) and has now embraced the Charisma crowd. Here is the preview for a conference at which Driscoll spoke a few weeks ago.

Now that Macho Mark is sharing the stage with so many female speakers, we have to wonder whether he’s been chickified. Remember this video posted over at Desiring God?

In case you have any interest in listening to Mark’s 25-minute talk at the Charisma Conference, here it is.

And Driscoll is getting back into writing again, with a new book coming out soon.

Mark Driscoll announces forthcoming book in partnership with Charisma House

Here are Mark and Grace Driscoll discussing Spirit-Filled Jesus. Will there be any charges of plagiarism this time?

One thing Mark has always been is bold! Here he is asking for $$$ via Twitter.

https://twitter.com/PastorMark/status/1013188683841843200?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Etweet

However, what we found most shocking about ‘the new and improved?’ Mark Driscoll is his forgiveness challenge. Warren Throckmorton, who was mysteriously booted from Patheos a few months ago, just called attention to it. Warren wrote:

No, this isn’t the Babylon Bee

With the help of Charisma Media, Mark Driscoll has launched the Mark Driscoll Forgiveness Challenge. Apparently if you give Charisma your email, they will send you an e-book and a bunch of stuff.

Take a look at the information at Driscoll’s website – the4forgivenesschallenge.com (see screen shots below)


http://the4givenesschallenge.com

http://the4givenesschallenge.com

And here is Driscoll’s biographical information at his 4givenesss website:

http://the4givenesschallenge.com

http://the4givenesschallenge.com


Warren Throckmorton brilliantly ends his post with the following:

Notice anything missing? Look for it. There is a gap in the employment history from 1996 until the end of 2014. What was he doing then? How can you promote a forgiveness challenge when you can’t even mention the main reason you might have some issues to forgive or to be forgiven for?

Perhaps some things are better forgotten than forgiven. Now that’s a challenge.

Amen, Warren!!! Has Mark Driscoll ever gone to those whom he hurt and asked for their forgiveness? Here are three videos that provide a glimpse into Driscoll’s dictatorial rule at Mars Hill Church. We can think of two former elders whom we believe deserve an apology.


Comments

Mark Driscoll Ditches Calvinism for Charisma — 193 Comments

  1. With Pastor Mark Driscoll, it’s all about Jesus.

    I suspect many of the former pastors, elders and members of Mars Hill Church in Seattle would vigorously disagree with that statement.

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  2. Excellent post. From the post: “We were just beginning to discover the power of the internet as a research tool.” True.

    Looking at a clearly failed pastor’s reinvention campaign, social media is also a tool for the con-man’s new con, again and again.

    Ephesians 6: In the end, with spiritual warfare, however, IMHO, God wins.

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  3. I would hope that he has now discovered the power of the Holy Spirit and the power of God’s forgiveness, but I’m not holding my breath. While I do have problems with the Charisma crowd, I think they at least know more about the awesome love of God, than the Neo-Cals, so at least he is hanging with a better crowd. I do love the fact that mister macho Christian, is now having to share the stage with female preachers, it almost makes me want to pay to attend just to see it.

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  4. Again I ask, why do these failed preachers who have caused churches to crumble and have shipwrecked thousands of people’s faith think they STILL have to be in the spotlight. If Driscoll is such a “man,” he should get a real job and work for a living rather than leaching off of others’ hard earned money.

    Stuff like this makes me think that there should be no full-time professional pastors. I’m not sure it is worth the risk

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  5. Charisma is a perfect fit for Driscoll. He’ll now get involved with the New Apostolic Reformation and they will LOVE him. He will never have to justify his theology, behavior, or character as long as the money keeps coming in.

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  6. __

    “The Whole Truth, Perhaps?”

    hmmm…

    The Right Reverend Mark Driscoll certainly has a long history of harming, injuring, verbally abusing, using deception, misappropriation, and damaging many kind folk in his push to the 501c3 churcheanity BRAND top. He made his Calvinist benefactors look stupid and ridiculous. Many personally believe that It is only a matter of time before he does the same to his new charismatic benefactors as well. Since it is really all about the money, numbers, and market share, His benefactor’s are simply looking for a ‘good run’.

    Yet, God requires his servants to be blameless, beyond reproach ,
    demonstrating good character, and a good reputation. It is absolutely imposable to believe or trust this man on any level. Forgiveness is one thing, aberrations of senselessness and thoughtless, not so much.

    Celebrating a New beginning for MD?

    Please excuse me, I’ll pass.

    Too scary to contemplate.

    The watchman is on the wall for a reason last time I checked.

    ATB

    Sòpy

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=XGtNDgukfVI

    ;~)

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  7. However, what we found most shocking about ‘the new and improved?’ Mark Driscoll is his…”
    +++++++++++++++++

    plastic surgery

    Mark Driscoll has had a facelift.

    chickified is right.

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  8. So…Driscoll is a theological chameleon who has changed his brand-identity in order to go after another set of suckers? Shocker…This kind of chicanery will only continue so long as Christians look to mere men for answers instead of being diligent students of the Word themselves!
    Jesus put it this way in Matthew 10:16, “Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves.” He wanted us to be loving and trusting, but also discerning and wise. Unfortunately, many believers check their brains at the door, which is the only reason guys like Driscoll exist!

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  9. “Then in October 2017, (Driscoll) moved his blog over to Patheos.”

    Where it still remains and is active.

    “Warren Throckmorton, who was mysteriously booted from Patheos a few months ago, just called attention to it.”

    On his new non-Patheos blog.

    AFAIK, Patheos has yet to really explain themselves on that one.

    Driscoll – OK. Throckmorton – no longer part of their strategic vision.

    Ai. Yai. Yai.

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  10. Steve from Charisma thinks Driscoll is a great author and is so honored that he would want to partner with Charisma!

    Really? Somebody may want to gently break it to Steve that Driscoll is a serial plagiarizer. What self respecting publishing house would want to partner with this scam artist?

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  11. Todd Wilhelm: What self respecting publishing house would want to partner with this scam artist?

    The kind that likes filthy lucre, of course! They can’t possibly care what he believes, as long as he brings in money for them!

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  12. I wonder if Driscoll, a misogynist who thinks women can’t teach men, will fit into the Pentecostal world where (despite all its other faults) women pastors are welcomed.

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  13. Ricco,

    That is true in our church, in fact the entire conference. Even our bishops are unsalaried and have a real job, unless they are retired.

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  14. Deb,

    That is the core issue….. People like Mark Driscoll are the model hypocrites that turn other people off to Christainity….

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  15. Root 66,

    Because many of us have been told using our brain is “worldly”… I have literally had the NT verse of “the wisdom of the world” is foolish to G$d quoted at me….

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  16. Jeffrey Chalmers:
    Root 66,

    Because many of us have been told using our brain is “worldly”… I have literally had the NT verse of “the wisdom of the world” is foolish to G$d quoted at me….

    That’s about the saddest thing I’ve ever read. God gave us an intellect–and He expects us to use it! Especially when these snake-oil salesmen are pitching their ungodly wares in our pulpits!

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  17. Root 66,

    At my age/experience I take everything a preacher tells me with a level of skepticism…. but I did not when I was young….. and I have great concern for the “young” …

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  18. Mark Driscoll first and foremost is a communications and marketing professional (he has a B.A. in communications from Washington State). Following his fall from Mars Hill & Acts 29, he quickly identified another marketing niche to sell his wares within Charismatic circles. I’m sorry, but for a Christian group who hang their hat on spiritual gifts, the Charismatics have little to no spiritual discernment. Allowing Driscoll into their ranks and into their pockets is further evidence of that. Driscoll is a slick business man – I’ll give him that.

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  19. Wow it just never seems to end with this man. I just contacted the ministry whom Dee and Deb have highlighted. I spoke to a nice woman who wasn’t aware of Mark Driscoll other then he repented for his history with Mars-hill. I followed up with some other questions in regards to if her pastor did that even after repenting would he still be qualified to be a pastor? She said no. I then made them aware of TWW and that they are highlighted with Mark Driscoll in regards letting him have a platform with their ministry. I went on to tell her about Marc and his wife’s YouTube videos going into graphic detail of how woman “wives” need to please their husbands orally and how disgusting his statements are concerning sex and women. She again agreed that is pretty gross and inappropriate. She told me she would send the information to her boss and asked for TWW website. I then told her that it might be wise for her boss to do some more research on Marc Driscoll if he isn’t already aware which i find it hard to believe he isn’t either he is and doesn’t care of he isn’t and doesn’t research who they give platforms to. Either way it’s not good. Dee and Deb do a fabulous job in reporting these topics and situations. I think it’s equally important for us to hold these ministries accountable by calling in and asking them to give a response as to why they give platforms to men like Marc Driscoll. I believe it certainly would have an impact if enough of us contacted them in these matters. If i’m wrong I welcome the feedback. I am putting the phone number to the magazine who heads this conference below.

    Mail and Phone
    Address: 600 Rinehart Road
    Lake Mary, FL 32746
    Fax: webmaster@charismamedia.com
    Telephone: 407-333-0600
    Fax: 407-333-7100 (fax)

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  20. ishy: So predictable…

    When an Assembly of God pastor at a mega church in my area gave Driscoll a platform during his unrepentant comeback, I predicted on a TWW blog piece at that time that Driscoll would reinvent himself as a “Charismatic Calvinist.”

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  21. srs:
    Sounds like Marky Mark is still following the big (Spirit filled) $buck$.

    Marky Mark??? Nah, that nickname doesn’t do it for me.
    I label him Mark, of the Beast.

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  22. Jeffrey J Chalmers:
    Root 66,

    At my age/experience I take everything a preacher tells me with a level of skepticism…. but I did not when I was young….. and I have great concern for the “young”…

    Indeed! Fortunately, God isn’t afraid of our skepticism, doubts and questions. In fact, He invites us to “taste and see that the Lord is good”! But sadly, many of the kids that the seminaries are pumping out question nothing and become the mindless minions of their favorite celebrity preacher or professor.

    On a side note: nothing brought more fear to our former Neo-Cal pastor than we told him we were going to hang on his every word and research every ‘pastor’ he quoted from the pulpit. He didn’t like that one little bit! Thankfully, scrutiny didn’t seem to bother Jesus or the Apostle Paul!

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  23. Max: meant to say “Charismatic Calvinist”

    “Charismatic Calvinist”—that’s almost as strange of bed-fellows as the freewill baptist church down the street from us which is a 9-Marx reformed church! 🙂

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  24. shauna,

    Shauna,

    I really appreciate your boldness! It amazes me that they seemed to know nothing about this guy! Do they not have the internet, or something?!? Are trying to be like Sgt. Schultz from “Hogan’s Heroes” when he says, “I know NOTHING!” Or, perhaps they choose to overlook his sketchy past in order to pad their pockets in the present. How hard is it to do a little research?

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  25. Max,

    Interesting. I’m not sure any Calvinists I know embrace charismatic doctrine, and vice versa. Mark Driscoll may be trying to make history by embracing both. Although I, for one, question his sincerity as long as he’s made little or no effort to reach out to those he’s hurt and ask for their forgiveness.

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  26. The following is not, repeat not, a political statement but rather a religious statement of something which may be soon to be discussed on the national level.

    You all do know that a charismatic catholic is on the short list for supreme court nomination. The issue of her religion was an issue before and is predicted to be an issue now if she is the one who is put up for the court by the president.

    So, if anybody is not up to date about what charismatic this or charismatic that is-now is the time because it just may be a major national issue (law regarding religious test be hanged) starting next week.

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  27. You got to hand it to MD in that he is a master communicator.

    And up for discussion, should anybody be interested, is that Jesus was a young man as one of his detractors noted as something against him. Judging from the subsequent traditions concerning the twelve, apparently they had to have also been relatively young during Jesus’ ministry or else they lived way longer that the life expectancy that one would expect.

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  28. singleman:
    Max,

    Interesting. I’m not sure any Calvinists I know embrace charismatic doctrine, and vice versa. Mark Driscoll may be trying to make history by embracing both. Although I, for one, question his sincerity as long as he’s made little or no effort to reach out to those he’s hurt and ask for their forgiveness.

    If I am not mistaken, the combination of neo-calvinism and “charismatism” (for lack of better one-word ‘ism’) was a feature of the early years of what became Sovereign Grace Ministries.

    It sounds more like a business decision to move into a market that is less familiar/satiated with the product.

    It’s perhaps a rather tattered “silver lining” to a rather “dark cloud”, but arguably a good thing that came out of the Mars Hill movement was greater public awareness of how megachurch power dynamics can lead to pastoral abuse of flock and of staff. That model of ministry will hopefully wind up in the dustbin of history.

    Perhaps some day seminary practical theology classes will put great emphasis on Jesus’ “self-giving servant” leadership approach. The US megachurches will be useful historical case studies of what happens when church leaders decline to follow Jesus’ pattern.

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  29. Nancy2(aka Kevlar): Marky Mark??? Nah, that nickname doesn’t do it for me.
    I label him Mark, of the Beast.

    And Marky was sharing the spotlight with Jonathan Cahn, who is scary on several levels. Cahn has sold tons of books, and is a popular speaker in the Charismatic world. I think he’s a nutjob and a con artist. So I call him Jonny Con.

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  30. singleman: I’m not sure any Calvinists I know embrace charismatic doctrine

    “Apostle” C.J. Mahaney was quite the charismatic, before his bud Al Mohler bailed him out and put him on a purer Calvinistic track. Driscoll will find lots of folks interested in his books within Charismatic ranks – his pornographic “Real Marriage” book and workshop was a hit at a mega AOG church near me.

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  31. I do not seek to judge Mark Driscoll’s relationship with Jesus nor do I seek to cast aspersions on him or any other, but when I hear and read what he is putting out, I am reminded of the passage in Philippians 3:18-19 where Paul says (emphasis mine, if the formatting worked as I intended):

    For, as I have often told you before and now tell you again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is set on earthly things.

    Literally, Paul is playing on words to say that false teachers seek their own comfort (their belly) over the good of the church. In other words, they view their bodies as more important and worthy of attention than Jesus’ body, for which He died.

    It grieves me to no end.

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  32. Samuel Conner,

    From what I’ve heard and read about SGM, C.J. Mahaney moved in more of a Reformed direction after he and Larry Tomczak parted ways in the late 1990’s. (The parting of ways was quite a mess, but that’s already been discussed elsewhere.) I’m sure Albert Mohler also had some serious influence on Mahaney as Max noted in a comment on this page.

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  33. “Now that Macho Mark is sharing the stage with so many female speakers, we have to wonder whether he’s been chickified.”

    Oh no, he is still a DudeBro! This time around, he is preaching macho-forgiveness. Check out the following clip from the “Stronger Men’s Conference” sponsored by a mega Assembly of God church. Driscoll appears at the 1:00 mark.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gn7D422-cfE

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  34. GSD [Getting Stuff Done]: And Marky was sharing the spotlight with Jonathan Cahn, who is scary on several levels. Cahn has sold tons of books, and is a popular speaker in the Charismatic world. I think he’s a nutjob and a con artist. So I call him Jonny Con.

    I have a couple of his books, and I think he is a mixed bag. Some of what he is saying seems to the sort of thing that perhaps can be found in others of his religious background-like those who are into Jewish mysticism for example. But that is not what I want to say. If you notice on that talk he gave at the capitol he sways back and forth and back and forth, which looked really distracting to me. My daughter then said that people with at least one particular condition who think too fast do this and the rhythm that the swaying establishes helps them maintain a slower way of thinking and speaking. In other ways it can be a compensatory behavior for them. Now YoungDaughter has a masters in learning disabilities and may be correct, but I do not believe that teachers need to be throwing around diagnoses, we have too much of that already, so I am not-repeat not-saying what ‘diagnosis’ she suggested (in case anybody wonders why I don’t just blurt out everything proven or not proven).

    But back to Cahn, I also think that society has a lot to pay attention to from those whose thinking is sometimes farther out than most of us would go. The insane, the genius, the prophet and sometimes the artist may all be way out there. It can be hard to tell which is what, especially when there are so many, like you say, con men and nut jobs.

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  35. GSD [Getting Stuff Done],

    Jonathan Cahn has quite a strange track record, that’s for sure. I read his bestseller, “The Harbinger,” soon after it was published. I was initially impressed with Cahn, but since then he’s made some questionable proclamations and delivered some “prophecies” which didn’t come to pass.

    Besides Driscoll and Cahn, the only other name I recognized from the Charisma Conference speakers list was Katie Souza. She’s had her own share of controversy, but several folks I know and trust consider her legitimate. She spoke at a church in my old hometown last fall; I would have checked her out had her appearance not fallen on the same weekend as my 40-year high school reunion.

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  36. Root 66,

    “Because many of us have been told using our brain is “worldly”… I have literally had the NT verse of “the wisdom of the world” is foolish to G$d quoted at me….

    “That’s about the saddest thing I’ve ever read. God gave us an intellect–and He expects us to use it!”
    ++++++++++++++++

    christians are taught to turn it off. it’s the explanation for John Piper.

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  37. Mark Driscoll Ditches Calvinism for Charisma

    Now that one con game’s losing steam, the grifter starts a new con.

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  38. “we have to wonder whether he’s been chickified” (Deb)

    Driscoll is going to find in Charismatic ranks that the women have been loosed! In New Calvinism, the wimmenfolks walk behind their men on leashes. Ohhhhh, but it’s much different in Charismatic church! Grace better keep a close eye on her DudeBro … there may be something predestined in the spiritual realm that will bring Driscoll down for good. Lord knows the charlatan hasn’t fallen hard enough yet to keep him out of the ministry. Forgive him if he genuinely repents? Certainly. Restore him to ministry, give him a stage, promote his books? NO!

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  39. one of the little people:
    Charisma is a perfect fit for Driscoll. He’ll now get involved with the New Apostolic Reformation and they will LOVE him. He will never have to justify his theology, behavior, or character as long as the money keeps coming in.

    Including Spiritual Warfare Seminars at three-four figures a seat!

    Plus, he gets to call down Hexes and Curses Imprecatory Prayers on all his enemies real or imagined!

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  40. Max: Grace better keep a close eye on her DudeBro … there may be something predestined in the spiritual realm that will bring Driscoll down for good.

    With his erotic fascination with both ends of the alimentary canal, I always figured he’d go down in some sort of sex scandal I was surprised when he got caught in a plagiarism scandal.

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  41. Max: “Apostle” C.J. Mahaney was quite the charismatic, before his bud Al Mohler bailed him out and put him on a purer Calvinistic track.

    That’s HEAD Apostle(TM)!
    Of the People of Destiny(TM)!
    (Ego Much?)

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  42. shauna,
    Well, my writing partner told me once of a church in his area whose pastor invited Mike Warnke as a guest preacher KNOWING the guy was a fraud…

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  43. This is just too much. First he has to state it all about Jesus otherwise we might think it is all about himself. Wants to make sure we aren’t confused. And I just can’t imagine a Paul.org or a PeterMinistries.org. Or maybe a JohnOfPatmos.com where if you donate he can be forgiven by the Romans sooner and go free. Such a sad state “c”hristianity is in. It’s not Christianity at all.

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  44. Ricco: Again I ask, why do these failed preachers who have caused churches to crumble and have shipwrecked thousands of people’s faith think they STILL have to be in the spotlight?

    Ask any M.B.A. who left a trail of bankrupt companies behind him and his golden parachutes.
    SAME DYNAMIC.

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  45. Jeffrey Chalmers:
    Root 66,

    Because many of us have been told using our brain is “worldly”… I have literally had the NT verse of “the wisdom of the world” is foolish to G$d quoted at me….

    That’s why after many years fluctuating between “Done” and “None” I ended up with the RCC.
    (Though I still “never let on what I really feel” around self-identified Christians(TM).)
    Romish Popery has a long track record with the Arts and Knowledge.
    “We have the Vatican Observatory and Pontifical Academy of Sciences, they have the Kentucky Creation Museum and Ark Encounter theme park.”

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  46. Re the picture:
    Looks like Deep Throat Drisky has ditched the puka-shell necklace, fauxhawk hairdo, and Mickey Mouse T-shirt…

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  47. Maple Lady: Such a sad state “c”hristianity is in. It’s not Christianity at all.

    Within the “Christian” industrial complex in America, marketing professionals merchandise a gospel which is not the Gospel at all. As Dietrich Bonhoeffer said:

    “Cheap grace means grace sold on the market like cheapjacks’ wares. The sacraments, the forgiveness of sin, and the consolations of religion are thrown away at cut prices. Grace is represented as the Church’s inexhaustible treasury, from which she showers blessings with generous hands, without asking questions or fixing limits. Grace without price; grace without cost!”

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  48. Todd Wilhelm: What self respecting publishing house would want to partner with this scam artist?

    Even LifeWay and Crossway had enough sense to drop Driscoll. Makes you wonder if Stephen Strang, Charisma publisher, really knows all the scoop about the potty-mouth preacher from Seattle. Driscoll has re-invented himself numerous times. Once he was emergent, then he became resurgent, and then submergent for a while until he resurfaced as a Charismatic Calvinist. This will last a while until they catch up with him … narcissists can’t change – it’s not in their DNA to be nice for very long – he will slip up somehow, somewhere.

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  49. Headless Unicorn Guy: Romish Popery has a long track record with the Arts and Knowledge.

    It really is ironic (my opinion) that given its past history, Catholicism has come to grips with and made peace with The Enlightenment and The Rights of Man far better than has American Protestantism.

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  50. Headless Unicorn Guy: With his erotic fascination with both ends of the alimentary canal, I always figured he’d go down in some sort of sex scandal I was surprised when he got caught in a plagiarism scandal.

    If I may repurpose a famous saying of Adam Smith,

    There is a great deal of ruin in a superapostle

    (or, for that matter, a large denomination)

    Me thinks we will be hearing from MD for a dishearteningly long time yet.

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  51. Headless Unicorn Guy: Romish Popery has a long track record with the Arts and Knowledge.

    Well, if one reads the history of western/eastern european civilization prior to the reformation, when ‘Romish popery’ was not only those who continued to be Romans after the reformation but also those who went protestant, then we need to be saying that Everybody’s History in western civ includes a strong arts and knowledge impact from religion on our civilization. Especially there for a while it was the eastern division of the empire where learning flourished while the western half was still engaged in lots of more or less tribal warfare in the early middle ages. Nevertheless, why the reformers would forsake that history and that tradition I have no idea, that is to say no idea that does not make the reformers themselves look really bad in this aspect.

    Certainly, it is our history, all our history back when. Isolated craziness has alway been there, of course, but the systemic denial of arts and knowledge is not our long heritage. That is something that some folks have tried to impose on us, and we have the option to just say ‘no’ to their attempts to bind us with their foolishness. (Takes in deep breath and fans face vigorously.)

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  52. Muff Potter: Like they say, it’s impossible to make this stuff up.

    Shallow people swimming in a shallow sea. These are the church men of the future?! I can just see the Apostle Peter on stage ripping through a giant log with a chain saw (not). Real churchmen are out and about ministering life to the hurting and dying in Jesus’ name – they don’t seek a stage or show up where others do.

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  53. Nick Bulbeck: One that believes it is morally wrong to allow suckers to keep their money.

    I like your style Nick!

    BTW, does anyone know where I can pick up one of those stylish vests Mad Dog is always sporting? I think it would help me look twenty pounds lighter!

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  54. Todd Wilhelm: Steve from Charisma thinks Driscoll is a great author and is so honored that he would want to partner with Charisma!

    Really? Somebody may want to gently break it to Steve that Driscoll is a serial plagiarizer. What self respecting publishing house would want to partner with this scam artist?

    *blink* Charisma House publishes vapid nonsense, for the most part. If given a choice between something from Crossway (Calvinist) and Charisma House (Charismatic), I’d rather have something from Crossway. Even if I end up throwing it at the wall, because it’s probably not going to be the spiritual equivalent of gelatin.

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  55. okrapod: So, if anybody is not up to date about what charismatic this or charismatic that is-now is the time because it just may be a major national issue (law regarding religious test be hanged) starting next week.

    I would just note that William Brennan, who was a Supreme Court justice from the 1950s to the 1980s, was grilled and I do mean GRILLED, over his Catholicism at his confirmation hearings in 1956. I was bored one night in the law library, picked up our copy of the hearing transcripts and was completely *stunned* over the kind of raking over the coals Brennan got from the senators. That’s because I’d had it in my head that the only time this happened was when Kennedy was running for president.

    By the way, the religious test provision in the Constitution reads as follows: “but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.” The history of this clause is that in England, persons of certain religious backgrounds (first Catholics, then also non-conforming Protestants) were not allowed to hold government office. Here in the USA, laws cannot be passed to have one favored religion over another in government office. Thus, merely asking a potential Supreme Court justice if his/her religious beliefs would affect his/her decisions is not a religious test in the historical meaning of the clause.

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  56. ishy: Random aside, apparently Lifeway just published a “study” that claims people leave churches mostly for theological reasons. Anybody else think there might be some bias in this?

    I wonder what they included in “theological reasons”?

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  57. Headless Unicorn Guy: “We have the Vatican Observatory and Pontifical Academy of Sciences, they have the Kentucky Creation Museum and Ark Encounter theme park.”

    My ex-boyfriend knows the head of the Vatican Observatory, Brother Guy Consolmagno. Ex-bf is impressed with the work the Vatican Observatory does, it’s real science, not “we’re starting out from s conclusion and trying to prove it.” The observatory is here in Arizona and Bro. Consolmagno comes up to Phoenix in the spring and practices his new presentations on geeky astronomy locals like ex-bf.

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  58. Muslin fka Deana Holmes: Thus, merely asking a potential Supreme Court justice if his/her religious beliefs would affect his/her decisions is not a religious test in the historical meaning of the clause.

    I did not know that. Some folks, or so I have read, have been quite pushed out of shape about how they dealt with her religion when she was up for federal judge, and apparently somebody from her religion, and I don’t know at what level, made a statement about some ‘group’ she is a member of, and ‘they’ are saying that you ain’t seen nuthing yet about religion if she is put up for the court.

    So, is there a level at which one would cross some line in said questioning, or is what I am reading just more ‘fake news’ hysteria and nothing to take seriously? For example, could the senate decide that she just takes her religion too seriously and turn her down on that basis, or would they have to officially say something else? Could we as a nation, absent some law forbidding it, just reject let us say any and all Muslims from public office because of their religion, for example? I don’t mean just how people vote but also who gets appointed and how senate committees vote-actual gov stuff.

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  59. I went to Mars Hill…..It was just a big corporate run church. He kept growing Mars Hill at an unsustainable rate and it just all blew apart and he ran. I am seriously done with church and the absolute insanity with the so called Christian Leaders….it’s a joke.

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  60. The Charismatic community is very split on the female leader issue. Not all Assembly of God churches are alike. So on that point, the charismatic lovers of hierarchy love him. The others I am sure are upset. I bet C.J. is jealous. The gifts are irrevocable. So their power positioning in spite of their prayer languages keeps them having to change for their consumers. A book on forgiveness, LOL, the dead writers that he loves so well have already written enough on it. Do we really need more? Where is his book on asking for forgiveness?

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  61. Muslin fka Deana Holmes: My ex-boyfriend knows the head of the Vatican Observatory, Brother Guy Consolmagno.

    I know of him. “The Pope’s Astronomer.” Small-body Planetologist (i.e. asteroids & dwarf planets).

    Back when I got my first semi-pro publication, my editor on that one was trying to get a back-cover endorsement from him.

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  62. Muff Potter: It really is ironic (my opinion) that given its past history, Catholicism has come to grips with and made peace with The Enlightenment and The Rights of Man far better than has American Protestantism.

    As I’ve commented before, in the 500 years since the Reformation Wars the two sides have exchanged attitudes. Now it’s the Evangelicals (especially the NeoCals) who act like the Jack Chick version of the Medieval Romish Totalitarian Steamroller and the Catholics that show a lot of tolerance and variety.

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  63. elastigirl: “That’s about the saddest thing I’ve ever read. God gave us an intellect–and He expects us to use it!”
    ++++++++++++++++
    christians are taught to turn it off. it’s the explanation for John Piper.

    Like Reichsminister Speer, “arranging his mind” to see nothing wrong with the Nazi regime he was rising in.

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  64. On a lighter note.

    YoungDaughter thought we needed another dog and got one of these. It is absolutely the most intelligent dog we have ever dealt with. She watches our face when we speak and clearly tries to understand and comply. She even seems to make complex sounds like trying to speak-not just bark, yip and whine. It is almost scary. We have had lots of dogs over the decades but nothing quite like this one. We noticed this behavior from the start (seven weeks old when we got her) and it continues now at five months.

    She also doubles as a floor mop and a foot warmer. I recommend this dog, and I am not even particularly a dog person.

    http://www.dog-learn.com/dog-breeds/cavanese/

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  65. Bridget: Muff Potter,
    I couldn’t either! And it blathers on for another 25 minutes!!!

    In my background, that’s the sign of a fanboy servicing his obsession — can’t change his mind, won’t change the subject, and keeps going on and on and on.

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  66. historically speaking AoG shouldn’t be considered charismatic but Pentecostal. I know that’s being pedantic but as a former AoG I think it’s important to distinguish between Pentecostals who grew out of a reformist tendency in the Wesleyan/Holiness traditions and had qualms about the Social Gospel’s materialism and post du Plessis charismatic groups.

    I have a few books by Gordon Fee so I would say there’s a scholarly bent in at least some Pentecostalism that has shown up on the West Coast for which the AoG is admittedly not known as a whole.

    Ever since Driscoll shook hands with Jakes at Elephant Room 2 there have been plenty of signals he was open to shifting alliances. He’s dropped hints like that as far back as blogging about how great it was to meet Robert Schuller back circa 2006. He’s been pretty transparent about this but partisanship for and against doctrinal teams has tended to obscure the ability of people to otherwise observe this over the years.

    His switching to a charismatic team is the least surprising thing about him these days. He could even decide he’s an egalitarian, after all, at some point over the next twenty years.

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  67. Root 66: Are trying to be like Sgt. Schultz from “Hogan’s Heroes” when he says, “I know NOTHING!”

    I’m not going to rag on Johann Banner’s best-known character & tag line.

    Sgt Schultz had a good reason for staying deliberately ignorant. He was trying to stay alive in a time and place when knowing too much could mean a slow horrible death in a KZ or the Russian Front meatgrinder.

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  68. WenatcheeTheHatchet: His switching to a charismatic team is the least surprising thing about him these days. He could even decide he’s an egalitarian, after all, at some point over the next twenty years.

    Whichever is to his personal advantage at the time?

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  69. ION: Fitba’

    So, the Weltmeisterschaft quarter-finals are going down. As is Neymar, narrowly escaping a yellow card for diving in the box. Currently, Belgium are leading Brazil 2-0 after an interesting first half, in which each team scored – but Brazil’s Fernandinho did so at the wrong end.

    10 minutes into the second half, and Brazil are pressing for a goal back. They’ve just had a very good shout for a penalty – the ref’s had a good game so far, I have to say, though.

    Earlier, France beat Uruguay 2-0, and will play the winners of this match in the semi-final. Belgium were very good in the first half, but are being just a bit passive just the noo – if Brazil get a goal back, it will be a grandstand finish.

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  70. WenatcheeTheHatchet,

    Good points. In addition to pentecostals on the one hand and more recent charismatics on the other hand there are those who call themselves continuationists but who do not self identify as either pentecostal or charismatic.

    Also in addition to all that there are people in various denominations who believe in certain supernatural mysteries (for want of better descriptive terms) but who do not fit into either of the three categories I already mentioned.

    And then there are those who don’t.

    That being the case, and I think it is, then there are probably a gracious plenty people who do and will respond somewhat to the ‘new’ MD and what he is saying even if they maintain a degree of caution about him and those like him.

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  71. jyjames: https://www.news-leader.com/story/news/local/ozarks/2015/06/03/pokin-around-cussing-pastor-preach-james-river-church/28444249/
    Even after MD left his mega in a trail of dust and destruction, AOG (charismatics) were having him, see the link.

    From this June 4, 2015 article:

    “Driscoll, 44, known by critics as the “Cussing Pastor,” will preach at 9 a.m. and 10:45 a.m. Sunday at James River Church in Ozark. The megachurch, with two locations, has an average Sunday attendance of about 9,200 … Driscoll has spoken at James River before. He and his wife, Grace, were here as part of their “Real Marriage Tour” in February 2013.”

    Driscoll has found an easier target in the Assembly of God ranks than in New Calvinism. After presenting his pornographic book on the “Real Marriage Tour” at James River Church, they had him back on a forgiveness tour and to speak at their Stronger Men’s Conference. I have found that most folks labeled as Charismatics have zero discernment.

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  72. Mike: big corporate run

    The operative words in your comment.
    – the place to be
    – ‘it’ pastor w/special wife
    – edgy
    – music, atmosphere
    – place to pick-up (clients, spouse, etc.)
    – youth-attractive
    – image
    – multi-site
    – sovereign with layers of underlings
    – branding to brand name (Saddleback, Willow Creek, Mars Hill, Osteen/Lakewood)
    Go ahead of the pack and lead to gain market share. “Nice to be us” feel.

    Interesting, with all of the power, appeal, and resources, they fail to keep children safe and scandalous side-chick-seeking out. At the core, an empty gilded package. If it’s not them, it’s in their watch, and they hand-wave (thus, perpetuate).

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  73. Well, Belgium held on to win 2-1. Terrific game – to my mind, the de facto final, since these were possibly the two best teams left in the tournament. It could well be a great semi-final too; but I think Belgium are favourites to win it. Which makes them favourites for the World Cup, as this is much the stronger half of the draw.

    Currently watching Oliver Kahn describing Belgium’s tactics on German TV. I don’t speak enough German to follow it in detail, but I’m having fun trying.

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  74. jyjames: “Market conditions”

    I’m sure that MD has been using his downtime in Arizona to analyze the Christian market to determine where he now fits best. He’s already tested the water a bit within Charismatic/Pentecostal ranks and found that they would love to have him join them! Before leaping in that direction, he considered what product to sell them and how to package it. He evaluated the potential market growth rate and performed a competitor analysis, finding no viable competitors for his brand. He most likely constructed a SWOT chart to determine the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats for his new venture. After this exploration, he decided to ditch Calvinism for Charisma and is moving full speed ahead in that market segment. It’s all about the market and how best to position yourself within it.

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  75. Max: I have found that most folks labeled as Charismatics have zero discernment.

    That may well be, but I think they have the opportunity in that community to believe larger things from and about God than some of the rest of us do. What bothers me worse is the idea among some anti-charismatics that basically God has gone off and left us with nothing but some ancient writings and our own wits. Somewhere between extremes we must not forsake the concept of God-with-us.

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  76. okrapod: I think they have the opportunity in that community to believe larger things from and about God than some of the rest of us do

    Amen! I often told by Baptist colleagues through the years that the organized church would be in much better shape if the Baptists and Pentecostals merged. Southern Baptists claim to be a people of the Word, but are scared to death that the Holy Spirit might get on them like over at the Assembly of God church! On the other hand, the Pentecostals cling to the things of the Spirit, but are generally shallow in their understanding of the Word. I have been around both in my long Christian journey … I’m a Bapti-costal!

    okrapod: Somewhere between extremes we must not forsake the concept of God-with-us.

    If we ever get that right, Okrapod, we might just have Church!

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  77. Root 66,

    I’ll be honest…I didn’t know how to spell Chick Fil-a. I’ve never eaten there! We only have one within a five-mile drive of my home, and I’d rather use that time to drive to Inn ‘N Out. Now you know my priorities!

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  78. okrapod: Also in addition to all that there are people in various denominations who believe in certain supernatural mysteries (for want of better descriptive terms) but who do not fit into either of the three categories I already mentioned.

    I am one such person. I fit into no particular category, have no denomination, and consider myself a rogue anomaly amongst people of faith.

    A semi-Voltaireian free thinker as it were, and yet, I revel in the supernatural exploits of Jesus and believe them literally.

    I am bane to both scientific materialist and theological dogmatist.

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  79. Linn:
    Root 66,

    I’ll be honest…I didn’t know how to spell Chick Fil-a. I’ve never eaten there! We only have one within a five-mile drive of my home, and I’d rather use that time to drive to Inn ‘N Out. Now you know my priorities!

    Either establishment would have much more to offer than Mark Driscoll could serve up, in my opinion!

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  80. Max: I have found that most folks labeled as Charismatics have zero discernment.

    When I first became a Christian, it was through a large charismatic campus ministry. They weren’t affiliated with a particular church, and there were several in town. Most of the students came from wildly different hometown churches.The campus minister and his wife seemed mature and stable, but they were about the only people I met who were, even after visiting several of the churches. Everything seemed like a competition to be the “most spiritual”, and that seemed to drive the lack of discernment. Many of the people I met seemed to be earnest, but it’s like they were afraid if they didn’t get more and more dramatic about their faith, God would drop them or something. I didn’t see that pushed in the churches, but I didn’t really see it confronted, either.

    At that time, the AoG church was very charismatic in flavor. I moved back to the area a few years ago, and it’s now New Cal. The pastor and his wife I knew from that time. I got the impression they were from more of the Gothard-style church background, and maybe New Calvinism appealed to him because of its patriarchy.

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  81. okrapod: So, is there a level at which one would cross some line in said questioning, or is what I am reading just more ‘fake news’ hysteria and nothing to take seriously? For example, could the senate decide that she just takes her religion too seriously and turn her down on that basis, or would they have to officially say something else? Could we as a nation, absent some law forbidding it, just reject let us say any and all Muslims from public office because of their religion, for example? I don’t mean just how people vote but also who gets appointed and how senate committees vote-actual gov stuff.

    I can’t say. I just remember being hugely shocked by the questioning directed at Brennan, who was the chief justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court, so not a slouch. And this was on the written page! I have to wonder what the actual hearings sounded like. Seriously, the anti-Catholicism was breathtaking. But it was pretty much around the same thing that surrounded Kennedy before his speech to Houston pastors four years later–would Brennan be taking orders from the pope? These days, if a senator got up and asked that kind of question, people (including me) would be giving him/her some serious stinkeye.

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  82. WenatcheeTheHatchet: Ever since Driscoll shook hands with Jakes at Elephant Room 2 there have been plenty of signals he was open to shifting alliances. He’s dropped hints like that as far back as blogging about how great it was to meet Robert Schuller back circa 2006. He’s been pretty transparent about this but partisanship for and against doctrinal teams has tended to obscure the ability of people to otherwise observe this over the years.

    One thing I don’t think Driscoll is willing to give up is the charismatic “gifts.” Remember, he was a fool at MacArthur’s 2013 Strange Fire conference, where he was not invited, was asked to leave and was generally a jerk. (Interestingly, that was in the last year Driscoll was at Mars Hill. Hmmmm.) I could be surprised, but so far that is one thing he has been unwilling to ditch in his quest for a new group to grift from.

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  83. Deb: Max probably just raises one hand.

    Yes, very slowly if I’m moved to do so and I never wave it around so as to be a spectacle. I’ve also been known to spontaneously shout “Amen!” and/or “Preach it!” I once stood to my feet in excitement, but quickly sat down after noticing I was standing alone. It’s amazing that I survived in SBC ranks as long as I did without being excommunicated.

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  84. ishy: At that time, the AoG church was very charismatic in flavor. I moved back to the area a few years ago, and it’s now New Cal.

    As time goes on, I suspect we’ll see more and more AoG churches transition to New Calvinism. A generational shift will force them to go there or they will lose the Millennials and Post-Millennials. Many AoG churches staff NextGen pastors patterned after New Calvinism to reach the youth with the “grace” message; Piper is popular reading among this group. I’ve noticed in my area that AoG churches are less Pentecostal than they used to be; they don’t stress that you need “the gift” as they once did.

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  85. Max: I once stood to my feet in excitement, but quickly sat down after noticing I was standing alone.

    Once in a very proper liturgical service I stood up, except everybody else knelt down. Ever since that I never trusted my memory as to what I should be doing. A 3 or 4 second delay to check out what other folks are doing is the better part of wisdom for me. I blame it on elder brain syndrome, as good an excuse as any. At least you were enthusiastic; I was just bewildered.

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  86. okrapod,

    I go to a liturgical church and when people come to visit, I tell them not to worry if they do an action at the wrong time. They don’t have to do anything they don’t feel like doing, and if they do it wrong, no one will care. AND, if the observer DOES care–he/she’s the one who is doing it wrong–like, pay attention to your OWN prayers and stop judging other people, right?

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  87. singleman:
    Max,
    Wayne Grudem is a Calvinist and a non-cessationalist. I’m not sure if that is the same thing as charismatic though

    Interesting. I’m not sure any Calvinists I know embrace charismatic doctrine, and vice versa. Mark Driscoll may be trying to make history by embracing both. Although I, for one, question his sincerity as long as he’s made little or no effort to reach out to those he’s hurt and ask for their forgiveness.

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  88. okrapod: Well, if one reads the history of western/eastern european civilization prior to the reformation, when ‘Romish popery’ was not only those who continued to be Romans after the reformation but also those who went protestant, then we need to be saying that Everybody’s History in western civ includes a strong arts and knowledge impact from religion on our civilization.Especially there for a while it was the eastern division of the empire where learning flourished while the western half was still engaged in lots of more or less tribal warfare in the early middle ages. Nevertheless, why the reformers would forsake that history and that tradition I have no idea, that is to say no idea that does not make the reformers themselves look really bad in this aspect.

    Certainly, it is our history, all our history back when.Isolated craziness has alway been there, of course, but the systemic denial of arts and knowledge is not our long heritage.That is something that some folks have tried to impose on us, and we have the option to just say ‘no’ to their attempts to bind us with their foolishness.(Takes in deep breath and fans face vigorously.)

    Couldn’t agree more. For me as a classical musician and academic, I am so disheartened the way the way the evangelical church hates art and knowledge and only likes propaganda. Your words warm my heart!

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  89. Ricco,

    From my fundy background, the only knowledge/learning one should learn is the “approved” knowledge, that fits the fundy preconceived assumptions/ideas. For example in my middle through high school, we never read or learned any classical greek literature… which I regret to this day..
    If I were teaching/approving the curriculum, i would have compared and contrasted all the OT to the contemporary literature of the time, including old Babylonian literature. From my superficial knowledge, such a comparison would be great learning tools… but NO, my fundy school leaders would be “afraid” we might learn some evil pagan stuff! Never mind that the fundies love to embrace the democracy of the USA that comes out Greek politocs… sigh..

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  90. Ricco: Wayne Grudem is a Calvinist and a non-cessationalist. I’m not sure if that is the same thing as charismatic though

    Grudem doesn’t talk about the Holy Spirit enough to be a Charismatic.

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  91. I am Calvinistic, complimentarian, elder rule and all that good stuff. In fairness to the Charismatic believers, I believe that it is impossible to demonstrate from scripture that the “sign gifts” have ceased. I am about as un-charastmatic as they come, but if I let scripture guide me, I find that I can learn a lot from my more charismatic friends.

    Who knows if Driscoll is sincere or not? God will judge. That is what the apostle Paul would surmise. It just seems to me that his past sins and lack of discernment disqualify him from being a shepherd over God’s precious people.

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  92. Muslin fka Deana Holmes,

    at the risk of linking to earlier blogging I’ve done, crashing Strange Fire 2013 was the month before the fateful interview with Janet Mefferd.

    https://wenatcheethehatchet.blogspot.com/2018/03/a-first-prelude-to-review-of-justin_20.html

    and Driscoll resigned in October 2014 after the Result Source controversy compounded the already existing plagiarism controversy. I published a certain notorious William Wallace II work in late July 2014 along with other threads.

    It seems as though he’s tried to keep his options open on the patronage side of things.

    I wouldn’t hesitate to say that there are people he’s trying to sell but … I think it can be easy to forget that while he’s pitching content “down” to masses he has to pitch “up” to men with more money and influence, sometimes more behind the scenes than up-front, to keep in business. What the 2012 through 2014 controversies catalyzed was a crisis of trust within his patronage base, a kind of crisis that a guy like Doug Wilson has somehow managed to avoid. A bad-news teacher can get in a lot of trouble and still weather the storm so long as they don’t alienate their support base but all of Mark’s controversies in the 2013-2014 period did precisely that, alienate his formerly loyal support base.

    It seems that all through the last ten years Leadership Network has stood by him in one way or another, too. That might be something to dig into but even I only have so much time, energy and resources. But I’ve traded notes with Brad on this topic over the years.

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  93. George,

    “Who knows if Driscoll is sincere or not? God will judge. That is what the apostle Paul would surmise. It just seems to me that his past sins and lack of discernment disqualify him from being a shepherd over God’s precious people.”
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    I truly appreciated your comment, George. But i have to ask — does it really matter what the apostle Paul would surmise? Knowing Jesus’ recorded comments on not judging, I’m a very good surmiser myself. i bet you are, too.

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  94. Muslin fka Deana Holmes: I wonder what they included in “theological reasons”?

    I’m hoping it’s the “theological reason” of pastors who lie their ways past search committees and weasel their way into taking over churches—but I kinda doubt it!

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  95. I’ve heard tales of cockroaches that get flushed down a commode and are still able to survive by avoiding the main sewer pipe, crawling out of the commode, drying off their wings, and finally ditching the commode for better pickins’ elsewhere.

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  96. Jeffrey Chalmers: If I were teaching/approving the curriculum, i would have compared and contrasted all the OT to the contemporary literature of the time, including old Babylonian literature. From my superficial knowledge, such a comparison would be great learning tools… but NO, my fundy school leaders would be “afraid” we might learn some evil pagan stuff! Never mind that the fundies love to embrace the democracy of the USA that comes out Greek politocs… sigh..

    I’m right there with you. I’ve heard OT scholars compare it to other literature of the period and posit that, since they think the OT was written during the Babylonian captivity, it was written to help distinguish the Isrealites from the other religions of the area.

    Scholarship and discussions like this open up whole new avenues of meaning for me, and I just committed 8 different types of fundy heresy in the above paragraph.

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  97. Muff Potter: I’ve heard tales of cockroaches that get flushed down a commode and are still able to survive

    A useful analogy that indicates why the need to flush Driscoll more than once.

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  98. singleman,

    I think for Driscoll(and also many other “famous” preachers)
    It’s more about the Washingtons, Lincolns, Hamiltons, Jacksons, Grants, and Franklins, than Jesus.

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  99. Well just seeing his smug face pop up again makes me feel slightly nauseous. Could there be a better ‘mark’ for this conman than churches full of people desperate to embrace the works of God in forgiving people their sin? How long until it all goes wrong again? I have precisely no confidence that anything has changed in MD.

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  100. George: Who knows if Driscoll is sincere or not? God will judge.

    “It isn’t our job to judge outsiders. But it certainly is our job to judge and deal strongly with those who are members of the church and who are sinning in these ways” (1 Cor 5:12). Or, as another version puts it “God decides on the outsiders, but we need to decide when our brothers and sisters are out of line and, if necessary, clean house.” Mars Hill & Acts 29 did some house-cleaning with Driscoll a few years ago … the greater Body of Christ needs to pay attention to their decision and not allow him room to sneak back in the house – he has done us much harm.

    George: his past sins and lack of discernment disqualify him from being a shepherd over God’s precious people

    And everybody shouted “AMEN!”

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  101. For years I have been reading this blog, though not commenting much. I have tried to read the posts and balance what I see in the comments section and think and pray about what is said and what God would have me learn from it. I gotta say, there are some things that get old in the comments section.

    Look, there are some of you who are guilty of the same kind of thing these folks being written about in the posts often are, a kind of divisional snobbery of faith in which you think you have the One True Thing.

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote: “We have the Vatican Observatory and Pontifical Academy of Sciences, they have the Kentucky Creation Museum and Ark Encounter theme park.””

    Deana Holmes chimes in, in agreement: “My ex-boyfriend knows the head of the Vatican Observatory, Brother Guy Consolmagno. Ex-bf is impressed with the work the Vatican Observatory does, it’s real science, not “we’re starting out from s conclusion and trying to prove it.” The observatory is here in Arizona and Bro. Consolmagno comes up to Phoenix in the spring and practices his new presentations on geeky astronomy locals like ex-bf.”

    Not everyone is in agreement that the Vatican Obsevatory is a good thing; ask some of the Native American tribes. Of course, I’d say even more, but that would open me up to mockery about crazy charismatics and prophecy believers. But of course, some people simply can’t consider those options because it’s a bridge too far for them to cross. Fine.

    You know what, guys? I’m Charismatic/Pentecostal. I think women can lead and preach. I’m a college educated artist and writer and no one would consider me thoughtless or stupid. I’ve been blogging since 2002, so I know how blogs and comments go. I read some of the books and things you’re poking fun at in these comments. You act as if the Vatican has the handle on science, but have you ever really attended or listened to some of the creationist speakers and scientists? They aren’t dumb, they have serious material and education. We’re talking physicists, medical doctors, molecular biologists, astronomers, engineers, etc. And you know what? That Ark Encounter you make light of was important for me to visit for reasons you might not have considered:

    https://julieneidlinger.blogspot.com/2018/05/a-visit-to-ark-encounter.html

    Some are implying that Charismatics are not all there because they just can’t discern as good as you can. Seriously, dude? This gets wearying! Why do you build your own ghetto and call out others for theirs?

    Why do you do this? You sit here and make jokes (particularly about intelligence, whether spiritual or intellectual) about vast swaths of fellow Christians under the guise of I don’t even know what anymore–I really don’t understand what you gain when you do that. Charismatics are everyone’s favorite target; sure, there are problems in that belief realm, but there are problems in…oh…say…RCC. There are many Charismatics who understand their ownissues and are quite intelligent about it (e.g. http://pneumareview.com/john-macarthurs-strange-fire-reviewed-by-craig-s-keener/)

    You have the same problem as Driscoll, Mahaney, et al. in that you think you ought to stand in a place of judgment of other believers who may not agree with all that you do but are still in the faith. It is good to call out abuse, which is what most of the blog posts do here, but when I delve into the comments section, it’s a disheartening mixture, too often, of “ha ha, look at those idiots who aren’t like me” which is highly ironic. Don’t you see that that’s how you get to abuse? The other is the lesser, and therefore, is more justifiably abused in some manner, whether physical or verbal. Charismatics are Christendom’s favorite whipping boy; I get it. I’ve experienced it my whole life, particularly online. Everyone loves to make us the punchline.

    To the same degree that serious 5-pointers seem to dispel any notion of supernatural anything at work today, some commenters here who claim to stand against Neo Calvinists or whatever you call them have a similar limitation that’s only a bit further down the line–they, too, have a sharp cutting-off point that they won’t allow crossed. I don’t. I read books by Michael S. Heiser and I listen to “crazy” podcasts and I speak in tongues and dig into my Bible and pretty much every day I’m seeing evidence of a supernatural God at work in everything created and happening. It is a different mindset, one of expectation. It’s not easy being open to the Holy Spirit and trusting that leading; it’s much easier to make jokes about anyone who might utter the word “prophecy” and say they’re just suckers.

    No, the Ark Encounter (and other creation museums) isn’t a joke, nor are the scientists who work there (or with other creation organizations). No, the Vatican Observatory isn’t the most amazing example of Christian science ever. They are what they are, to whom they are for, as God uses them.

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  102. George, many on both sides of the Calvinism/Arminianism debate cannot find in the Bible where the sign gifts end. But that doesn’t mean they accept all the charismatic movement brings.

    We lived for a time not all that far from Pritchert Colorado. (May have misspelled it.) Andrew Womack started his “ministry” there. Let’s just say it goes far beyond the sign gifts and leave it at that.

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  103. Julie,

    I am going to comment on only a part of what you wrote. This blog focuses primarily on abuse and that is what my pushback to you is all about. We have a prime directive here. That directive means that if one is going to support or speak well of a person involved in a sexual abuse, spiritual abuse, physical abuse pr emotional abuse of children/women/men, the commenter must first express concern for those who were. harmed.

    You evoked Mahaney and Driscoll, and attempted to conflate that those here, including the Deebs,are just the same as those men. Yet you didn’t even mention the incredibly large number of victims of both Mahaney and Driscoll. Have you read their testimonies or the court records?

    Do you know about Mark Driscoll’s demon trials? Have you ever seen the video of his seeing things, like an adultery in action?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aVyFyauE4ig

    What about the video of him saying that he was going to throw people off the bus and rejoice in the pile of dead bodies? What about him from the pulpit, saying he was going to punch out his elders/e who disagreed with him? Have you read story after story about the accusations of serious abuse in his church.

    If you think this is some screed against charismatics, think again. It is a commentary about abusive and over the top charismatics. My husband became a Christian in a charismatic fellowship at Dartmouth College. I used to attend Father John Bertolucci’s charismatic prayer meetings in upstate NY. sadly, he was outed as a sex abuser. Although we are not now charismatic, we have roots in the movement.

    I was abused by a bunch or YEC in my former church. They were so mean, I could not attend my Sunday school class for weeks because of their attacks. This was even after they stayed at my former beach house gratis. Even though I am a TE/EC, I am kind. They were not.

    I don’t care if you speak in tongues, etc. That’s your deal and I respect that. However, this is a blog that allows commentary from anyone. That means you will read things you may not like. I read things I don’t like every day. Get over *your feelings* and learn from it. Learn to communicate with those who are not like you. You may find it interesting., You may even stretch yourself.

    However, don’t go comparing us to Mahaney or Driscoll. By doing so you diminish the experiences of the victims in these situations. Also, next time, why don’t you mention the abuse of victims to show that you get it? It will help you to come across as a caring individual.

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  104. George: Who knows if Driscoll is sincere or not? God will judge. That is what the apostle Paul would surmise. It just seems to me that his past sins and lack of discernment disqualify him from being a shepherd over God’s precious people.

    Motive cannot be judged by us or even by himself. My pastors always says “Even on my best days my motives are mixed.”

    However, the Scripture does command us to look at actions. The plethora of Driscoll’s abusive actions have disqualified him from the pastorate. The fact that he is playing games with his underlying belief stricture is readily apparent. He does not know who he is and he can be a mean, ugly and vengeful person.

    I believe we need to pray for his prey.Special thanks to Dee Holmes who has protested outside of his church. This was effective because it brought to light his dark past.

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  105. Beakerj: I have precisely no confidence that anything has changed in MD.

    Neither do I. Also, a number of people from across the spectrum do not think he is qualified as well;.

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  106. WenatcheeTheHatchet: It seems as though he’s tried to keep his options open on the patronage side of things.

    Hi Wenatchee. Long time, no hear. So happy to see you chime in. For all of you newbies, Wenatchee is the man who has documented all things Driscoll/Mars Hill. He is the recognized expert on the matter. If you have any questions, he is the go to man.

    Wenatchee, I agree. Driscoll is far more fluid his belief structure than I imagined. I thought he might partner up with Robert Morris and the ARC since he was hanging with him for awhile. Morris is the guy who has continuous demons being exorcised and he also believes that the apostle Paul was demon possessed during his ministry. But, he has 30,000 members who seem to adore his thinking.

    However, I now think that Driscoll is his own man and he want to be weird and successful on his own. It should be an interesting ride. Will you be documenting his church in Arizona as well?

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  107. Julie: Not everyone is in agreement that the Vatican Obsevatory is a good thing; ask some of the Native American tribes.

    I’m a bit perplexed on how Native America comes into play with the Vatican Observatory.

    I myself am of Native American heritage (Menominee tribe of Wisconsin) and I fail to see how a modern observatory can be a bad thing to any people regardless of genetic origins.

    Can you elaborate?

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  108. dee,

    Throckmorton established that Morris is one of the board members of the new enterprise. So, yeah, Driscoll has thrown in with more of a Robert Morris, Jimmy Evans crowd, though he’s retained ties to Leadership Network and Larry Osborne.

    It’s more slow keeping tabs on Driscoll in the AZ phase in as much as his AZ era crew is still pretty loyal and this means Driscoll can keep using scripts on them that he used ten years ago. For instance, Mark could use the “I was sick and stressed out a few years ago but I traded up for health and holiness” in the new Arizona era and people who didn’t know how readily he used that script ten years ago in the midst of the firings of Petry and Meyer might think and feel this is how it has gone–but it’s a script Driscoll has deployed and recycled over the last twelve years.

    The forgiveness challenge Mark just did is of a piece with teaching on forgiveness he was doing ten years ago. I’ve blogged about the now-and-then element of that recently, in the last week. It takes time because showing how he is still embracing the same basic ideas now that he did ten years ago back when he might now say to AZ fans that he was sick and stressed out isn’t easy to compile, even for me.

    I was reading Jessica Johnson’s book about Mars Hill and Mark Driscoll over the last couple of months. Have a review up that I linked to in comments here. It features Driscoll’s 1992-era screeds at the WSU paper, stuff that got so bad I think even Dan Savage of The Stranger might have thought twice about running it.

    I’ll probably end up reading a second-hand copy of Driscoll’s next book but I’ve shifted back to writing about music and the arts more at the blog. I still try to keep tabs on Driscoll but last year was the centennial of the death of Scott Joplin so I had to write a few thousand words about ragtime and commemorate the anniversary of his passing. Joplin has been one of my favorite composers even if in formal musicology circles he’d be a lightweight.

    After twenty years I’m honestly not so sure Driscoll really “is” his own man. Now I agree he’s his own man in that he’s responsible for his actions but the different angle I’m thinking about is that in a lot of ways he’s never been his own man in ministerial terms. He co-founded Mars Hill with Mike Gunn and Lief Moi and got sent out by Antioch Bible Church. He got help and support from David Nicholas for a while and then it seems the help began to also be from Leadership Network and Larry Osborne. Now he’s got more a Robert Morris/Jimmy Evans backing. He’s had a history of sharing how dependent he was on co-founders and patrons in early phases of a ministry and then as years go by the narrative shifts toward how he did all this stuff and some people helped him out but it was him, really, him and Jesus. That’s a trajectory that comes up in the narratives he gave in the 1998-2001 period and it shifted slowly and steadily in the 2002-2008 period.

    Justin Dean’s said a lot in the last few years about how what took Mars Hill out was hostile secular/liberal press coverage and bloggers somehow played a role. Vanderbloemen Group (Turner’s new employer of late, it seems) presented Mark as having resigned under a lot of pressure and partly in response to bloggers, many of whom never set foot in a Mars Hill service.

    Well, that’s hardly the whole case. I was at MH for about eight or nine years as a member and attended for about a decade and never burned bridges with friends I made there. Wendy went to Mars Hill for years and even served as a deacon. Some of the higher profile bloggers absolutely were part of the culture of MH, but the way the Christian industry seems to spin things it’s more appealing to say that MH was taken down by a hostile secular press and bloggers. Ending Mars Hill wasn’t really the plan in my understanding. I was blogging with an aim that actual reforms would happen, if Mark and company would refuse to reform then, yes, I admit I prayed a lot that if they wouldn’t repent of being abusive leaders that God would destroy their empire and the credibility of their brand.

    It’s slower but I try to keep at least some tabs on stuff. I’ve also spent a lot of time reading Ellul and he’s been useful, there’s a whole lot about Mark Driscoll that makes sense if we stop thinking of him as the pastor he says he is and start seeing him as a propagandist shaping a brand. Between his study of speech communications and Grace’s public relations training what made them unusual among American celebrity/megachurch pastor couples is that their formal training shows that they trained in brand-making and marketing/selling techniques.

    I’m hearing that mark’s recycling his “I was stressed out and sick but I’m all better now and the best I’ve ever been” script. He used that back in the 2006-2008 period, too.

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  109. dee,

    I do not think her post indicated she did not get it. She was saying that in that ONE area her opinion was she saw some similarities.

    Look, every one of us has blind spots. I know I do. I know you folks care deeply for those wounded by abuse. Almost all of us who read here share that concern for them. I do not think she was addressing your actual posts-I think she was addressing the comment section, some of which does veer off. It will not hurt the rest of us to consider what she is saying. If it does not apply, fine, but if it does we have an opportunity to consider things we need to change. And the thing is, we all DO have to guard against being a stumbling block to others. We can certainly do what is necessary to protect victims of spiritual, emotional, physical and sexual abuse and still keep an eye on our own attitudes. None of us is so holy we do not need to take inventory.

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  110. Muff Potter,

    Muff, the spelling is different but Menominie is the name of a tune composed by Thomas Commuck in his shape-note hymnal Indian Melodies, which a few scholars regard as the first published musical score in Western notation to have been composed by a Native American (Brothertown nation, a confederacy of Christian converts from a variety of tribes). Indian Melodies is available at archive.org and IMSLP.org and the harmonizations were done by Thomas Hastings. One of my musical connections who went to Yale was sharing how Yale is working with the Brothertown on a project to perform and at some point record at least parts of the hymnal. My lineage is Quinault on one side of my ancestry so that’s literally the opposite side of the country but I’ve run some of this by Brad, for instance in the last few months.

    Like I was writing to dee earlier, I do still keep some tabs on MD post MH but I really have been shifting my blogging interests to music and musicology in the last few years. If anyone wants to read thousands of words on early 19th century guitar sonatas or ragtime that’s a direction I’ve been blogging in over the last few years.

    And The Incredibles 2 is a blast. Of course I was going to see the new Brad Bird.

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  111. People like Mark Driscoll with their authoritarianism is why I’m a red-letter guy when it comes to sola scriptura. The rest of the NT is persuasive commentary.

    The sundering of the veil gave us all a direct path to God. Their religion-businesses mean nothing to me except that they are the enemy.

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  112. dee,

    Dee, I disagree that Mark is fluid in his belief structure. His belief in Money is unchanging and unshakeable. He will say or do almost anything to acquire more of it. And he has ten thousand brothers and sisters leading “churches” across this country.

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  113. Benn: Doesn’t Matt Chandler prez of Acts 29 now embrace continuationism ?

    I believe in continuationism myself. But the miracles are to glorify God – there is no way any of them will be permitted perhaps within miles of any “offering plate”. I also suspect very strongly that the greatest gifts are going to be manifested only by homeless itinerant monks – the people whose lives are indistinguishable in their entirety from the lives of Yeshua and His disciples, who have been purified and purged of any interest in this world other than God’s own glory.

    If continuationism is true, that’s where you’ll find it.

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  114. hoodaticus,

    Your 2:49 pm comment gets at one of the other reasons I stopped being Pentecostal. Spiritual gifts are given for the benefit of the body of Christ, not the aggrandizement of the individual through whom gifts may operate. Pentecostals transform the apostolic teaching that you love God and neighbor and that the gifts are given to love and serve into a kind of MBTI prestige racket in which what you have defines your social role in a corporatized understanding of the body of Christ. I don’t think of myself as a continuationist or cessationist because in American turf war terms I don’t think either of those teams have really kept their focus on the very big “why” of the spiritual gifts and their theoretical or actual continuance. Neither side seems to take Paul’s instruction seriously that if you love God and love your neighbor as your primary goals the spiritual gift side of things is completely secondary. The gifts as such should never be the point, the questions are “Who do you serve?” and “who can you serve?” if we have no choice but to use slogans.

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  115. Julie: You act as if the Vatican has the handle on science, but have you ever really attended or listened to some of the creationist speakers and scientists? They aren’t dumb, they have serious material and education. We’re talking physicists, medical doctors, molecular biologists, astronomers, engineers, etc.

    Science progresses by comparing predictions made by its theories to measurements and observations made based on the theories being tested. Discrepancies between predictions and observations are the source of improved theories. Perhaps the recent observations of the spiraling together of two neutron stars, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GW170817 is one of the strongest indications of the overall correctness of our present fundamental physics theories.

    YEC is not science at any scale. These groups offer no theories that can begin to make testable predictions about the physical world. However, polished theme park displays do require use of technologies built on the very science they disparage.

    YEC has been a well covered topic for discussion here at TWW. However, it doesn’t offer insight to the various abuse situations that are currently the primary topics. You might want to examine “creationism” under the Categories menu. I have been a reader and commentor from almost the beginning of TWW. The intellectual and spiritual insights of the Deebs are remarkable thus admirable. My educational background includes an earned PhD in experimental physics granted in 1967.

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  116. Julie,

    Hi, Julie.

    this is by no means advice, just my thoughts. my background is also charismatic/pentecostal (as are a number of other commenters, i believe). sometimes i push back at bias against what i know to be valid and real, and dare i say true. but more often i just let it go.

    while i am a champion of an open mind, i have to remember that i have my own biases against elements of christian culture — although i believe i’m right, logic tells me i can’t be right about everything. and i hate to admit to myself that i’m probably not nearly as open-minded as i think i am.

    not sure what my point is, here, other than my (not entirely conclusive) thought processes on choosing my battles. and to let you know you’re not alone.

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  117. dee: Wenatchee, I agree. Driscoll is far more fluid his belief structure than I imagined.

    Wherever the Money and Fame are — especially if more than anyone else.
    “Because I’m a CELEBRITY!!!!!!!”

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  118. Max: As time goes on, I suspect we’ll see more and more AoG churches transition to New Calvinism. A generational shift will force them to go there or they will lose the Millennials and Post-Millennials.

    What is there in Millenial and Post-Millenial culture and psychology that would pre-dispose (“groom”) them for New Calvinism?

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  119. Headless Unicorn Guy: What is there in Millenial and Post-Millenial culture and psychology that would pre-dispose (“groom”) them for New Calvinism?

    I’m guessing it’s a reaction against squishy relativism. They want something solid and the New-Calvinists appear to deliver. However, the New-Calvinists don’t tell the whole story. In fact, they might not even be aware of the whole story themselves – an emporor’s clothing thing.

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  120. Ken F (aka Tweed),

    If you look at this, report by PEW, it doesn’t seem like millennials, like me, are that Calvinistic. http://www.pewforum.org/religious-landscape-study/generational-cohort/younger-millennial/religious-family/baptist-family-evangelical-trad/

    In fact, squishy relativism seems fairly high as 68% believe that right and wrong is not absolute. You will also notice, they aren’t gaining new converts as 88% are third generation or longer Baptists.

    My position is that these new churches aren’t doing well because of their Neo-Calvinism but because of the bells and whistles that turn church into an entertainment experience, which appeals to many in my generation because we expect to be entertained at all times.

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  121. dee

    If he’d changed we wouldn’t have heard of him for YEARS, if ever again. It all looks like an addiction to the limelight, to the power, to the money, for both him & others…as well as access to vulnerable victims.

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  122. Jarrett Edwards: My position is that these new churches aren’t doing well because of their Neo-Calvinism but because of the bells and whistles that turn church into an entertainment experience, which appeals to many in my generation because we expect to be entertained at all times.

    That certainly appears to be the case at SBC-YRR church plants in my area. Groovy bands, the audio/visual show, praise team performance, a cool preacher – all enjoyed over free coffee/donuts – are the major draws. The average attendee goes home having enjoyed the ‘worship’ experience, but couldn’t tell you the primary point the pastor was trying to make. Only a few are there to soak in the theology.

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  123. Jarrett Edwards: If you look at this, report by PEW, it doesn’t seem like millennials, like me, are that Calvinistic.

    I think we are answering different questions. I think the question is, of the millelenials who are drawn to New Calvinism, what could be the psychological reason? I answer from the perspective of the millenials I know here deep in the Bible belt. Of the ones I know through family, work, and church, none really fit the stereotype. For example, the ones at work are hard working, self-starting, give great eye contact, are not stuck in their phones, and give me great hope for this generation. Of the ones I know who are attracted to New Calvinism, they seem to thrive on the theological precision, measurability, and predictability. But I also know young millenials who have already burnt themselves out on it. It seems to me that New Calvinism produces mostly legalists and dones.

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  124. I’m sure a Repentance Challenge (What Repentance Is and Isn’t, Understanding Repentance, Seven Reasons to Confess and Repent) and a Pastoral Challenge (What Being Above Reproach Is and What Is Isn’t, Secen Reasons to Serve, Understanding Grievous Wolves) are in the offing if you give generously (maybe even radically).

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  125. Jarrett Edwards: My position is that these new churches aren’t doing well because of their Neo-Calvinism but because of the bells and whistles that turn church into an entertainment experience,

    I would second the assertion that Calvinist Churches continue to grow in spite of, not because of, their doctrines; mostly by not stating their theology forthrightly and in its entirety. My own (former) Calvinist church drew people for the exact opposite reason that New Cal churches rake ’em in – people who disliked the entertainment approach were thrilled to find an old-fashioned worship experience, including old time hymns and beautiful four or more part harmony singing. The theology was not openly declared, and, IMO, cleverly hidden or reinterpreted so as not to frighten people off.

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  126. truthseeker00: My own (former) Calvinist church drew people for the exact opposite reason that New Cal churches rake ’em in – people who disliked the entertainment approach were thrilled to find an old-fashioned worship experience, including old time hymns and beautiful four or more part harmony singing. The theology was not openly declared, and, IMO, cleverly hidden or reinterpreted so as not to frighten people off.

    What is it about some Calvinists – within both the “New” and “Old” among them – that they feel they need to hide their theological persuasion? That they have to operate in a cloud of stealth and deception, cautiously releasing their theology one point at a time? Could it be that they are not completely sold themselves on what they are selling to others?

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  127. Max: Could it be that they are not completely sold themselves on what they are selling to others?

    As you and others have pointed out, since they cannot be certain of their so-called ‘salvation’ before ‘the foundations of the world’, they probably have a nagging doubt about their own ‘sovereign election’, and so yeah, there’s probably transference in the sale.

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  128. Muff Potter: Max: Could it be that they are not completely sold themselves on what they are selling to others?
    As you and others have pointed out, since they cannot be certain of their so-called ‘salvation’ before ‘the foundations of the world’, they probably have a nagging doubt about their own ‘sovereign election’, and so yeah, there’s probably transference in the sale.

    Some time ago, I concluded that a lot of Calvinista behavior are desperate attempts to PROVE to themselves that They are Elect. And any assurance of Election is no good because of their doctrine that God can Will “false assurance of election” upon the reprobates. (Word of Calvin and all that…)

    So they’ll grasp for any PROOF of not only Election but TRUE Election… Getting Rich, Having Perfectly-Parsed Utterly-Correct Theology, showing the most Zeal and Devotion to The Cause — and WINNING no matter what.

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  129. Max: Could it be that they are not completely sold themselves on what they are selling to others?

    Of which a common reaction/solution is to Double Down AND SCREAM LOUDER!

    It’s said that 9/11 was partially an attempt by al-Qaeda to PROVE they were completely Faithful to True Islam. And the suicide attacks then and since were partially Acts of Faith to PROVE their Faith and Devotion to God Himself. And quell their own doubts and uncertainty in the process by offering their own lives as collateral.

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  130. Beakerj:
    dee

    If he’d changed we wouldn’t have heard of him for YEARS, if ever again. It all looks like an addiction to the limelight, to the power, to the money, for both him & others…as well as access to vulnerable victims.

    “But such is the lure of the Limelight, how easy
    It takes over the mind of its Host…”
    — Ponyphonic, “Lullaby for a Princess”

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  131. Muff Potter: since they cannot be certain of their so-called ‘salvation’ before ‘the foundations of the world’, they probably have a nagging doubt about their own ‘sovereign election’

    “These things I have written to you who BELIEVE in the name of the Son of God [which represents all that Jesus Christ is and does], so that you will know [with settled and absolute knowledge] that you [already] have eternal life.” (1 John 5:13 AMP)

    Believers can be sure of their salvation … you know it in your knower. Those who think they ‘might’ be elected will doubt until Judgment Day.

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  132. Muff Potter: As you and others have pointed out, since they cannot be certain of their so-called ‘salvation’ before ‘the foundations of the world’, they probably have a nagging doubt about their own ‘sovereign election’, and so yeah, there’s probably transference in the sale.

    According to Calvin, God gives some reprobate a false faith that to them is indistinguishable from real faith. This means no Calvinist can be sure they are not one of those reprobates who have been given this false faith. I have tried very hard to find a Calvinist who knows about and can defend this “evanescent grace” described in Book 3, chapter 2, section 11 of Calvin’s Institutes. Nearly all Calvinists claim ignorance. Probably because it is such a disgusting belief.

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  133. Ken F (aka Tweed): evanescent grace

    Calvin was getting out there when he wrote about God giving some folks “fake grace” so he could damn them with greater punishment for possessing a deceiving grace. The thought of God pretending to save some, giving them a fake assurance of salvation, then damning them should drive folks away from this aberrant theology. What love is this?!

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  134. “Mark Driscoll Ditches Calvinism for Charisma”

    Add a Yakuza-worth of tats and a pet angel Emma, and it’s Lakeland all over again!
    Gut-punching cancer patients and all!
    “SHEEKA BOOM-BAH! BAM!”

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  135. Max: Calvin was getting out there when he wrote about God giving some folks “fake grace” so he could damn them with greater punishment for possessing a deceiving grace.

    True, but he also had to teach it because it is the only way to account for Christians walking away from the faith and dying in that state. If a person can walk away then grace is not irresistable and there is no perseverance of the saints. As sick as it is, Calvinism falls apart without it.

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  136. Ken F (aka Tweed): True, but he also had to teach it because it is the only way to account for Christians walking away from the faith and dying in that state.If a person can walk away then grace is not irresistable and there is no perseverance of the saints.As sick as it is, Calvinism falls apart without it.

    Ken F.,

    Yes, I have thought this as well since discovering the utterly repugnant teaching of ‘evanescent grace’. The belief in T-U-L-I-P demands certain assumptions that when carried out to logical their ends, cannot possibly be true. Evanescent grace is merely one of those by-products that occurs when attempting to prop up a precariously built house of cards. Eventually, Calvinism paints itself into an impossible corner that can only be rectified with teachings like evanescent grace.

    Not one time did our former YRR Neo-Cal pastor ever say, “Jesus loves you” from the pulpit. Now I more fully understand why he simply could not do that.

    I’ve said it before and I will say it again until I die: If your theology can’t look every person square in the eye and confidently tell them that Jesus loves them and died for them, then your theology STINKS!

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  137. Ken F (aka Tweed): True, but he also had to teach it because it is the only way to account for Christians walking away from the faith and dying in that state.If a person can walk away then grace is not irresistable and there is no perseverance of the saints.As sick as it is, Calvinism falls apart without it.

    i.e. He’d painted himself into a corner with the corollaries of his foundation — his idea of God’s Sovereignty and Predestination — and when he got trapped in the results of his own logic, all he could do was handwave.

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  138. Root 66: I’ve said it before and I will say it again until I die: If your theology can’t look every person square in the eye and confidently tell them that Jesus loves them and died for them, then your theology STINKS!

    I cannot understand what binds people to this theology. Group think?

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  139. Ken F (aka Tweed): I cannot understand what binds people to this theology. Group think?

    In my limited exposure and understanding of it, this theology tends to attract people who want to feel like they are on the ‘inside’. It gives people a sense of pride and exclusivity when they feel like they are part of the ‘elect’. It also appeals to man’s intellect…because reading some of their stuff can be really mind-boggling! (Just try to understand Piper sometimes!) Of course, I think it has to be that way in order for their ‘gospel’ to hop through all of Calvin’s convoluted hoops. I do not believe the message of the Good News needs to be so complicated. Anybody ready for a rousing chorus of “Jesus Loves Me”? I am! 🙂

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  140. Root 66: In my limited exposure and understanding of it, this theology tends to attract people who want to feel like they are on the ‘inside’.

    Thar makes sense. One of their big points is how the non-elect are deluded (e.g. https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/does-god-lie). Perhaps they have not considered that they might be the deluded ones described in all those passages. Or they have not dug deeply enough into their own theology. Or they have too much invested to change (loss aversion).

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  141. His main problem was always Charisma… Not so much Calvinism…. Its his charisma side that made him believe he was a prophet….most of the neoCalvinists lack the traditional worship & faith expression of the Reformed confessions of faith & practice…

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  142. His biggest problems have never been related to traditional reformed but rather the charisma & non regulative principle bent of the neoCal movement that made him think he was a pope…. I’m opc-presbyterian brand of calvinism, and although imperfect, I doubt we would see a Driscoll type thrive in our branch / denomination in my lifetime…we don’t enable or allow a platform for celebrity

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  143. Anthony,

    It’s interesting how easily it can be forgotten that Driscoll’s credibility withered after a few years of withering criticism from people with journalistic or scholarly platforms who were OPC (Trueman, Mefferd), PCA (Wendy Alsup, myself) or Lutheran (Rosebrough). Jim West chimed in from time to time and he’s a Baptist into Zwingli, Bultmann and Brunner, and Robert Cargill’s a humanist.

    But then dee and dee may recall that I made a case that Driscoll would eventually prove a test case of the differences between neo-Calvinists/new Calvinists on the one hand and more historically Reformed types. Clearly a John Piper did not react to Driscoll the same way that Darryl Hart or R. Scott Clark did.

    I’m hesitant to even say that it was the charismatic side of Driscoll that was unstable if only in the sense that I’ve never considered myself a cessationist and Calvinists who have been skeptical of cessationism in some form have still had negative things to say about Driscoll (Steve Hays of Triablogue comes to mind).

    That said I can agree the neo-Calvinists are historically lazy to the point where they could consider Driscoll to be thoroughly Reformed merely for being a TULIP despite the fact that his Amyraldianism would preclude him from serious consideration in more historically Reformed terms.

    Justin Dean and perhaps other advocates on behalf of Driscoll have tried to present a narrative in which MH and MD withered under constant assault from liberal/secular media. MH crashed and burned after years of controversy but some of the key disasters were self-inflicted PR disasters in which MH leadership showed themselves indifferent to realities of zoning restrictions and real estate acquisitions with associated operating expenses. They also crashed and burned because of Driscoll’s plagiarism scandals revealing an egregious double standard on the issue of respecting IP; and they also crashed and burned because the various double standards of transparency and accountability for leadership vs the tithing regular attenders became too hard to evade.

    Justin Dean would be wrong to say MH and MD crashed because of liberal secular press coverage. Twenty years ago Driscoll was leveraging hostile secular/liberal coverage to expand his brand via a Mother Jones article in July 1998. Dean shouldn’t confuse his own incompetence in handling MH PR disasters with Mark’s experience handling PR. Grace trained in PR and media relations while Driscoll trained in speech communication.

    Driscoll got launched by way of Hutcherson’s Antioch Bible Church and so far I haven’t gotten a sense that any serious historical work has been done on MH because people are just hoping all this stuff will go away or that what happened with MH and MD couldn’t be construed as emblematic of popular/rock star celebrity Christianity rather than an outlier. But I would venture to say the last ten years indicate that a Mark Driscoll and a Rachel Held Evans are merely different variations of the same kind of incompetent hackwork we need less off across the spectrum.

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