Friday, December 30, 2011

GOD IN THE HANDS OF COMPLACENT SINNERS
...the dire need to recover a reverence for God in ministry

Introduction:

Dealing constantly with young, reformed emerging people and their allied bloggers is exhausting. I feel some days like Simon Cowell (of American Idol fame) trying to be honest with them about what they are saying and how their e-views are not that biblical, profitable, or true. When they get angry and "keep on singing" (though the audition is clearly over) they become more and more incensed that I didn't affirm them, what they stand for, what they are trying to sell, or one of their leaders.

This happens week in and week out; and like I said, it is exhausting.

No matter how many books I read, podcasts or vodcasts I listen to, emails I exchange, or blog interaction I try to have (I don't delete dissenting opinion on this blog - I actually allow people to passionately disagree with me without fear of being shut down) they still just keep on emotionally ranting about their postmodern world of pseudo-reformed, emerging faith.

One of the things that is most interesting is that very few, if any, will ever discuss these things biblically. They usually just appeal to a few evangelical leaders who embrace their movement. They know that I have not fabricated my concerns out of thin air - because I take the time to do my homework and usually they haven't. It's like trying to talk to a Romanist who has never read Tridentine doctrine, but yet wants to defend "the orthodoxy" of the Pope and Romanist theology. An effort in futility. I find this with bloggers too. Young, theologically immature, biblically untested, and undiscerning who are "sympathetic to the emerging cult of personality" types, get defensive at a moments notice.

This brings me to this article today: recovering a reverence for God by having a right view of God. This is hard for any emerging or emergent church leader to humbly submit too. Why? Because it means resigning their cultural hermeneutic to a biblical one and that is painful for them to do. They would rather speak to you about "contextualizing the truth" for they honestly believe that their little methods, techniques, gimmicks, tricks, cultural analysis, market surveys, and postmodern pathology actually adds to the effectiveness and impact of the gospel. They really don't believe in sola Scriptura; they really don't believe that "the gospel IS the power of God unto salvation" and requires no additional assistance from them. They don't understand Acts 17 or 1 Cor. 9:18ff in context and actual think the Apostle Paul was emerging too.  Their blogs are not ministry, but hobby, business and trade.  And if you speak of biblical evangelism - you are out of date. Missional is the new term now.  No one quite knows what it means, but that's the beauty of this movement. They like the ambiguity and still call it the reformed faith.

The nexus of the issue is disturbing: they believe the gospel needs their help. So they swear a bit when they preach; tell some dirty stories; speak in graphic sexual terms about women; even twist Scripture to try and be funny about masturbatory acts, and at some point will treat the Lord and His holy name as only a punchline for their jokes. They think that Chris Rock is a better pastoral role model than Christopher Love. And if you dare confront them or challenge them, they will cry foul (no pun intended) and try and make you the villain.

You see in their world, truth is not the primary consideration: experience, contextualization, conversation, audience expansion, carefully aligned political relationships, being soft and soft spoken IS. They call that humility and grace. Humility to them is never saying anything negative about another; and grace is simply recognizing we all are a little rough around the edges; and besides the other fruit coming from ones emerging church trumps all other considerations. What is that fruit? Numbers--they love numbers. They will tell you about their numbers almost every sermon. Once solid Christian publishers and even some Southern Baptist leaders have been seduced by their charms. It's frankly embarrassing and more than a little disappointing. They are so eager to grow their cause that they will sell out pragmatically and methodologically just to get a seat at the table and feel important as part of the latest boys club. Their motto reads as following: "God is Most Glorified in Us, When We Are Most Satisfied in the Culture." It's their mantra; their four spiritual laws; their purpose driven banner; their seeker friendly badge. It's their password, the secret code to get into the tree-house. It's their version of ministry.

Here is the reality: they really don't want to have to face or deal with the tough issues; it is easier to delete someone then to have to look circumspectly at the clay feet of their own man-made "heroes." They are constantly conflicted; saying just enough to try and come off as being challenging and balanced; but not saying enough to jeopardize their standing within the club. I am aware that I can be a strong, intimidating opponent for someone to have to take on, on most issues. But removing me out of the equation for a minute, these inexperienced "young lions" aren't even men enough to dialogue with biblically solid, kind, gentle, godly women either. They will delete them just as quickly; shut down their threads; take their ball and bat and run home.

So if you have drank the Kool-Aid of the emerging movement, may I challenge you to buck up today, play the man, and read the following article. If you get offended, it is intentional. I hope you even get angry; angry enough to honestly look at your pomo-world of imagined faith; and maybe come to grips with the fact that the "Vintage Jesus" you have been sold is a bill of goods by those who claim to be cutting edge in ministry. And when you get over them (and you will), then come back to the Word of God and to proven, faithful pastoral leadership from the halls of redemptive history and finally learn about the Lord Jesus Christ in all His transcendent glory, His gospel of grace, and how to do biblical ministry within the local church.

Until then, you will have to be satisfied with ministry that is foreign to the Bible, but oh how satisfying to your depravity.

Still Pounding on Wittenberg's Door,
Steve
2 Cor. 4:1-7

Israel had sinned grievously against the Lord.
She was guilty of lying, stealing, adultery, slander, deceit against their own families; they hated discipline and profaned the Word of the Lord. If God's anger burned against the wicked for doing such things, how much more does it burn against those who were pretenders about heavenly things?

Here is the astonishing conclusion: because the Lord kept silent, showed them mercy and did not bring swift and severe judgment upon them for their iniquities, He said, "You thought I was just like you..." Israel had done the unthinkable... they had "created" God in their own image to justify their transgressions.

What a stinging indictment. Those words penetrate our hearts as well don't they? We tolerate sin in our lives; we even justify it; we develop a seared conscience toward it; and even attribute God's supposed delayed chastening in our lives as if He condones our waywardness? Such is the stupor that sin renders to all of us. It reduces us to live as "brute beasts" - slaves to our instincts, when we should be living according to His Word as His redeemed children whom He has shown mercy upon mercy time after time.

When we were without hope, without the Lord and God’s wrath burned against us, we were as Jonathan Edwards once preached, "sinners in the hands of an angry God." Do we now as His children, try to pacify the Lord with such casual feigned worship, tolerating our sin while we raise our unholy hand in prayer to Him? Do we approach Him with such arrogance and self-assurance dulled by the sinfulness of sin, that we, left to our intoxicated deceived state, treat Him as if He has lowered His sovereign, holy character and ceased in His perfect omniscience, by turning a “deaf ear and a blind eye” to our lasciviousness becoming "God in the hands of complacent sinners?" Never!

This fiftieth Psalm has brought me low in conviction of my own sin, so that I may look up in repentance to forgiveness and behold the never-ending mercy of the One to whom I will give an account. “Blessed is the man whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. How blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not impute iniquity” (Psalm 32:1-2a). May we all find comfort in those great unshakable words of hope… amen?

In conclusion, listen to Spurgeon's thoughts about these verses which unmask us, then offer a great hope in Psalm 50:21-23.

Verse 21. These things hast thou done, and I kept silence. No swift judgment overthrew the sinner—longsuffering reigned; no thunder was heard in threatening, and no bolt of fire was hurled in execution. Thou though that I was altogether such an one as thyself. The inference drawn from the Lord's patience was infamous; the respited culprit thought his judge to be one of the same order as himself. He offered sacrifice, and deemed it accepted; he continued in sin, and remained unpunished, and therefore he rudely said, "Why need believe these crazy prophets? God cares not how we live so long as we pay our tithes. Little does he consider how we get the plunder, so long as we bring a bullock to his altar." What will not men imagine of the Lord? At one time they liken the glory of Israel to a calf, and anon unto their brutish selves. But I will reprove thee. At last I will break silence and let them know my mind. And set them in order before thine eyes. I will marshal thy sins in battle array. I will make thee see them, I will put them down item by item, classified and arranged. Thou shalt know that if silent awhile, I was never blind or deaf. I will make thee perceive what thou hast tried to deny. I will leave the seat of mercy for the throne of judgment, and there I will let thee see how great the difference between thee and me.

Verse 22. Now or oh! it is a word of entreaty, for the Lord is loath even to let the most ungodly run on to destruction. Consider this; take these truths to heart, ye who trust in ceremonies and ye who live in vice, for both of you sin in that ye forget God. Bethink you how unaccepted you are, and turn unto the Lord. See how you have mocked the eternal, and repent of your iniquities. Lest I tear you in pieces, as the lion rends his prey, and there be none to deliver, no Savior, no refuge, no hope. Ye reject the Mediator: beware, for ye will sorely need one in the day of wrath, and none will be near to plead for you. How terrible, how complete, how painful, how humiliating, will be the destruction of the wicked! God uses no soft words, or velvet metaphors, nor may his servants do so when they speak of the wrath to come. O reader, consider this.

Verse 23. Whoso offered praise glorified me. Praise is the best sacrifice; true, hearty, gracious thanksgiving from a renewed mind. Not the lowing of bullocks bound to the altar, but the songs of redeemed men are the music which the ear of Jehovah delights in. Sacrifice your loving gratitude, and God is honored thereby. And to him that ordered his conversation aright will I show the salvation of God. Holy living is a choice evidence of salvation. He who submits his whole way to divine guidance, and is careful to honour God in his life, brings an offering which the Lord accepts through his dear Son; and such a one shall be more and more instructed, and made experimentally to know the Lord\'s salvation. He needs salvation, for the best ordering of the life cannot save us, but that salvation he shall have. Not to ceremonies, not to unpurified lips, is the blessing promised, but to grateful hearts and holy lives. O Lord, give us to stand in the judgment with those who have worshipped thee aright and have seen thy salvation.

51 comments:

Bhedr said...

Phew! Thanks for this stirring brother. I heard Lutzer say last week that God Judges a nation by making them drunk.

Thanks for the wake up call. in the Phillipines there was this drink called Mojo that all the sailors and Marines talked about. It tasted like orange fruit drink and went down smooth. In one drink the unsepecting person became drunk and didn't know it. I believe we are in such a time in the contemporary church. "We have liberty in Christ". Promising freedom, we ourselves are slaves of corruption. You have given me much to meditate on. Keep stirring Campi.

Ronnie said...

God help us to always hold a high view of His purity and not profane His character through our complacency. Thanks, Steve, for the challenge.

Debbie said...

Hard truth and, as you said, “never ending mercy” are so convictingly and beautifully paired in this Psalm. Thank you for sharing the depth of these three short verses. I only regret that I don't have more time today to stay and study some more ... I'll just have to come back to this a little later.

gigantor1231 said...

Steve

Psalm 50: 21
21 These things you have done, and I kept silent;
You thought that I was altogether like you;
But I will rebuke you,
And set them in order before your eyes.

The New King James Version. 1982 (Ps 50:21). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

You know, as a growing, yet immature Christian, I used to think that somehow God was like me, but as I have drawn closer to Him over the years it is very clear that He is nothing like me! It is so important that we venture deeper into his Word and get to know Him, if we do not then the danger is that the glass we look into remains opaque and cloudy, it even becomes more unclear when we become complacent. I have been reading and listening to A.W. Tozer recently, in his book "The Knowledge of the Holy" he makes it so clear that God is nothing like us, yet in Him we live and move and have our being. It is such a blessing to me that God has chosen to reveal Himself to me, because I know that if I were simply searching on my own apart from Him, using man made methods and traditions, labyrinths, contemplative prayer the list goes on, I would be looking in vain! His word is truly a 'lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path' and until I/we plumb the depths of it as deep as possible we will never attain to the knowledge of Him that He calls us to.

Steve, please explain what a Pomo is?

Detoured By Travel said...

Thanks for this. God forgive me for any portion of the kool-aid Gospel that I may have inadvertently listened to or shared here.

"I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly lean on Jesus' name."

Love the sinner...HATE the sin.

SJ Camp said...

A "pomo" is a nick name for one who embraces postmodernism and sees the Christian faith through that lens.

The Emerging/Emergent church would qualify as such.

Hayden said...

Detour,

Do you know who said "Hate the sin but love the sinner"?

Ghandi (google it if you like)

Just some food for thought:)

Detoured By Travel said...

Hayden - Didn't know that...I believe you, no need to Google it.

I see it as something that only God has the complete capability to do. I do strive to do it in light of scripture. My Holy God hates sin and cannot abide it in my life or the lives of others. Therefore, if I am to be Holy as He is Holy I too must hate sin.

But yet I must love and hold as infinitely precious each and every sinner because their sould is infinitely precious to God. It's a tough balance and one I am UNABLE to do in and of myself. But the Christ in me CAN do it, if I am in complete surrender.

Now that I know that...I'll stop using it as a tagline here. I've just used it from time to time to remind myself of God's high standard I am to uphold. :D

traitor 313 said...

Mr. Camp,
I stumbled upon your blog today after being reminded by my mother of your music, and the A1M site.
As I was reading your previous posts, I was struck by something.
You seem to have a personal vendetta against Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill Church.
It seems incongruous to me that a respected Reformed Baptist, has such a distaste for Mr. Driscoll.
In the limited amount of speaking and writing of Mr. Driscoll's that I have come across, I have been impressed with his orthodox doctrine. While you make statements about his movement's denial of substitutionary atonement and other doctrines of the faith, he has "apparently" been preaching the Gospel, as proclaimed in the NT.
While I have never been impressed by his personal theological research or knowledge, he has not said anything, to my knowledge, that is heretical, or even outside of the Reformed tradition.
Could you provide examples of where he has done these things? I don't know enough about him to say that he is theologically sound, but I have not heard anything theologically, with which I disagree.
As a student at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, I had the privilege to attend a conference here on the Emerging Church Movement. I guess I don't understand what Driscoll is doing wrong in Seattle.

SJ Camp said...

traitor 313:
Thank you for your comment here and I greatly appreciate your question.

A few quick things for you:

1. I don't have a personal vendetta against Mark at all.

2. The issues surrounding Mark are:

-A lack of reverence for the Lord in his pulpit ministry (2 Tim. 4:1-5);

-His constant scatological, smutty, foul speech (see verses below);

-Using the Lord or His name as a punch-line for his jokes (cf, Lev. 10:1-3);

-A contextualization the gospel and the Word of God rather than the biblical model of 1 Cor. 2:2, 9:18-23 and Acts 17 in ministry.

He is more Amyraldian in his view of the atonement; he is not a Bible expositor; does not communicate a transcendent view of the Lord Jesus Christ; is totally pragmatic; numbers driven; has an unbiblical view of church growth and does not hold to the efficaciousness of the gospel plus or minus nothing (cf, Acts 1-5).

More specifically: Driscoll just doesn't cross the lines of propriety in his use of smutty language; his nomenclature comes close, if not altogether, to distorting the text he is trying to teach, and therefore, can distort a right view of the Lord Jesus Christ (a phrase he rarely uses) in incarnation. That's the greater issue here. It’s not that Mark goes beyond what constitutes “good taste” as Tim has mentioned here, its that he continually violates the standard of Scripture as a pastor called to preach the Word of God.

Consider the following verses:
Ephesians 4:29-30
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.

Ephesians 5:4
Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving.

Colossians 3:8
But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth.

1 Timothy 4:12
12 Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.

2 Timothy 2:15-16
Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth. But avoid irreverent babble, for it will lead people into more and more ungodliness,

Titus 2:7-8
7 Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity, 8 and sound speech that cannot be condemned, so that an opponent may be put to shame, having nothing evil to say about us.

“Sound speech” here literally means “healthy talk.” IOW, no rotten speech, or corrupt communication; nothing but what is pure, sound, graceful, and edifying; no filthiness, nor foolish talking and jesting, and are rightly condemned.

Here is what John MacArthur says about “sound speech” in this verse above:
“The word "sound" here, hugies is from hugiaino which means to be healthy or to be wholesome, we get the word hygiene from it, to induce health, life-giving, health-giving. Let your speech minister grace to the hearers. Let it be health-giving, spiritually healthy, spiritually life-giving, edifying, building up. How healthy? So that it is beyond reproach. It is unable to be accused, it is unable to be condemned.

Titus, look, you've got a tremendous job. I want young men to be sensible, I want their lives under control and in order to get their lives under control, they have to be committed to good deeds, they have to be committed to living lives of uncorruptness alongside the truth. They have to be committed to being serious about serious matters. And they have to speak with their mouths the things that are wholesome and healthy and life-giving and spiritually edifying. Titus, you not only need to tell them that, you need to show them how.”


Would you endorse the constant use by Driscoll of smutty language, scatological speech, graphic sexual descriptions of a woman’s private parts, using Scripture to humorously justify masturbatory acts, using the name of the Lord as a punch line in jokes, twisting Scripture to support degrading stories, and demonstrating little or no reverence of the fear of the Lord in public worship... and all this taking place, mind you, while “preaching the Word” from the pulpit, is acceptable pastoral practice and demeanor? (All of this is well documented by Driscoll’s own vodcasts and podcasts and yes I have read his two books and virtually listened to everything that he has released on podcast and vodcast the past three years).

Are you offended by this?

What I am surprised about, is that Driscoll has not yet been placed under church discipline and removed from pulpit ministry indefinitely until genuine repentance and fruit befitting such repentance can be confirmed. But that won’t happen anytime soon, for not even the leadership of Mar’s Hill Church will hold him accountable to a biblical standard of sound speech; for if they had it would have happened already.

I do pray for Mark that he would leave behind these things and be given over to biblical ministry once again.

I hope this helps to answer your question a bit more. I would like to hear your thoughts too.

Don't drink the Kool_Aid...

In His grace,
Steve
2 Cor. 4:1-7

Carla said...

traitor 313 said:

"You seem to have a personal vendetta against Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill Church.
It seems incongruous to me that a respected Reformed Baptist, has such a distaste for Mr. Driscoll."


Folks would do well to understand that being critical of someone does not automatically translate into a "personal vendetta".

Some have said the same of me, and it's simply not the case at all. I can honestly say that if Driscoll dropped all the trash (that Steve pointed out), I'd be among the first of his critics to applaud him. For me, the issue is not with him personally, the issue is with his conduct and language. THAT, has simply got to go.

Andrew Ramsey said...

steve, you are wrong.

if you look at the four gospels in and of themselves. one gospel was written to the Jews, one to the Romans, one to the Gentiles and one to the Greeks. it is like ABC, NBC, CBS, and CNN. They were written in different ways to different people groups still communicating the same thing: Jesus and HIM CRUCIFIED AND RESSURECTED.

i have been reading your blogs and i have noticed that even when you take potshots at Driscoll you've violated the Matthew 18 principle of if you find your brother in sin that you should go to him first. it seems like you're the one who is not bucking up and being a "man" about it. you are starting to sound like a 7th grade school girl that can't get over the fact that the universe doesn;t revolve around her. pounding the pulpit doesn't gain you credibility.


i don't contextualize every time i share my faith. i subscribe to the Way of the Master way of evangelism. however, if people people are asking stuff about truth, then that's when i contextualize. for example, someone told me that if it makes you feel good then it is right for you. so i asked him if it was alright for me to punch kittens in the face just because it made me feel good. he agreed with me that there had to be a standard of absolutes somehow.

traitor 313 said...

When you say Amyraldian, are specifically referring to the idea that Christ's death was sufficent for all, but efficient for only the elect?
I will not debate the other issues, for I believe your view as expressed here, of contextualizing, is wrong. You're point that the Gospel does not need to be contextualized is well taken, but you seem to forget that, while the gospel does not need to be contextualized, the church must be.
If an unregenerate person will not attend the church, and knows no one to have the gospel presented, how will they hear? Without being pragmatic I would say that God is greatly using Mark's contextualizing for His kingdom. The context of the presentation of the Gospel must be legitimate but I would argue, that Mark's cultural context is such that he is legitimate. I suspect you will want to pray for me now also. I pray that fundamentalism such as your's will be redeemed by the Grace of God.
If you would like to discuss, with example's, Mark's Amyraldian views, I will be willing to return to your blog to do so.

In the Love of our Lord Jesus Christ,

Traitor313

cyd said...

These are certainly strange days we live in...compromise means balance, fruit is measured in numbers, popularity equals blessing, culture is sovereign, edgy is the new holy and self-promotion is the new one-another, and Seattle is the most depraved city on the planet...

May the Lord have mercy on us.

Aren't we thankful that he will present the church to Himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish!! Eph.5:27

Thank you for not caving to the popular emerging persuasion, Steve. Know that you are prayed for, appreciated and respected for your strong stand for Truth.

Cyd

SJ Camp said...

andrew
This discussion maybe beyond your pay-grade, but I would encourage you to speak to these issues biblically and leave the cheap invective by the wayside.

SJ Camp said...

Cyd
Well said and so true. Same vocabulary - different dictionary.

The two things always lacking in Driscoll's ministry is reverence for God/the fear of the Lord, and a clear biblical foundation for how he does what he does.

Lev. 10:3 is the lucidity:: "when you come near Me I must be regarded as holy; and before all the people I will be glorified." Holiness when we approach the Lord in worship; the end result being glory to God alone in worship. There is no place in biblical for the foul talk and guttural language Mark prides himself.

There is very little holiness associated with Driscoll's ministry; and it is abundantly clear, that the glory is all about him and not about the Lord.

Meanwhile, young bloggers like Tim, continue to speak pragmatically, subjectively, and emotionally about Driscoll - instead of biblically, doctrinally and theologically about these concerns.

So much for discernment.

Thanks again,
Steve
2 Cor. 4:5-7

traitor 313 said...

Steve,
One question.
I speak pragmatically and emotionally, yet the one theological question I have asked you, you have not responded to.
Regardless of his practice, is there any doctrine taught my Mr. Driscoll that is inconsistent with the bible? Forget for a second his "guttural language". Do you think he is, biblically speaking, outside the bounds of Biblical Christianity in terms of doctrine?
I already knew that you were going to criticize his preaching, that was to be expected from a fundamentalist such as yourself.
Yet you have not answered my original question...
I am not going to argue with you on contextualization, we will never agree.

In the Grace of Jesus Christ,

~Tim

PS I have always enjoyed the rich theological content of your music. Despite our disagreements, "Christ Died for God" has been a favorite of mine for quite some time. I especially appreciate it in light of the context it is in...Eph. 5:2, and Isaiah 53:10-12.

gigantor1231 said...

Traitor

How about the doctrine that teaches that we serve a Holy God and the we ought to be holy just as He is holy? Do you understand that both salt and fresh water can not come out of the same well? I think this is a good place to start and is pretty obvious.

Rod said...

Tim (Traitor 313)

I'll let Steve speak for himself, but why ask for this delineation between doctrine and practice?

Why isn't Driscoll's lewd behavior enough for you to pause and consider the heart of this post...the need for reverence?

Can you say Ted Haggard?

Unless I missed something, he was disciplined for wrong behavior, not wrong doctrine. Orthodoxy and orthopraxy are BOTH required for sound Christians and leaders.

I'd say, for example, Rick Warren wasn't nearly as blatant 10 years ago as he is today with his liberalism. The same for the Acts 29 guys. 5-10 years from now, their teaching will catch up to their behavior and it will be appalling.

Go back and read the list of verses Steve posted to you. Why would you overlook someone's consistent violations of godly living simply because you believe them to embrace (and preach) godly doctrine?

This is another great fallacy of Acts 29/emergents. Right doctrine is supposedly the only thing that matters. But the Bible demands both right doctrine and right behavior.

I just read Exodus 32 today. The Israelites were dancing at the calf and didn't even have the 10 commandments yet. They were judged as much if not more for violating godly living as they were for violating godly doctrine.

Stop dividing Biblical truth. It encompasses both belief and behavior.

Douglas said...

Imo, Mark Driscoll's preaching style degrades the very nature and character of my LORD and Savior Jesus Christ. He downgrades the awesomeness and holiness of God by his coarse jesting etc. If that is the sort of stuff that is reaching young people now, I'd hate to see what the long range future has in store??? I cannot stand listening to him anymore, he is a real stumbling block for me. His foul jokes and stuff make me want to chuck Christianity in and go back to the bike gang scene and get on the booze and party up. An issue I'm struggling with at this present moment in time. I am finding Christianity very discouraging because of all the rot that is around.

Thank God that Mr. Camp has stood strong on this issue even though I disagree with Mr. Camp from time to time over some things. It is probably me that still does not see things clearly as of yet, God help me please.

I have sinned by letting fly with foul words and I am convicted of it. I cannot justify it. The Scriptures slay me, including the ones Steve has posted above. The very Word of God.

cyd said...

Doctrine IS as Doctrine DOES.

SJ Camp said...

I think that Mark has a few issues doctrinally that are important to mention (and remember, he claims to be reformed so I will address these things from that perspective):

1. He does not believe in the biblical and reformed view of particular redemption. When you understand the nature of the atonement and for whom Christ died this becomes clear (John 17).

2. Mark has a faulty view of the Lord in substitution. He has said (and I have written on it before) that Jesus literally became the worst of all sinners on the cross. That He became the rapist, the child molester, the adulterer, etc. Again, this is not the proper understanding of 2 Cor. 5:21. Our Lord, even when taking upon Him the guilt, sin, penalty of, and wrath of God against our sin - always remained holy.

3. He has violated 2 Cor. 6:14-7:1 in whom he has chosen to partner with in ministry. This is critical and is a tremendous blind spot.

4. Lastly, he does not have a correct view of the total depravity of man. I say this, because he believes that his methods are necessary for the efficaciousness of the gospel - an Arminian belief. Salvation is of the Lord and all of our methods and techniques and gimmicks add not one soul to the kingdom or produce regeneration. He is a pragmatist.

Hope this helps in this discussion.
Steve

donsands said...

"I am finding Christianity very discouraging because of all the rot that is around."

The Church can be a messy place Douglas. I was an elder in my church, and we made some tough decisions, and perhpas were wrong to an extent, but our hearts were for Christ and His Gospel.
The congregation became very hostile. Much "biting and devouring" took place.

Some of these were not genuine Christians, some were.
God showed us all our hearts, so that we could repent.

My church split. It was a dark time for me. But, where was I to go? Christ dwells within His Church, which is His Body, and I must never forget that it is only by His grace that I am welcomed here, no matter how awkward and uncomfortable it may become at times.

Steve has a song that says something like, "I'd rather be on the front porch of hell serving the Lord". Amen.

One other thought is that when Christianity, or the Church, gives us a bad taste in our spirits, we can be sure that the Lord Jesus will never taste anything but good.

"Taste and see that the Lord is good, Blessed is the man who trusts in Him." Psalm 34:8

Jesus is the Bread of Life!

SJ Camp said...

traitor 313:
I forgot to address my last comment to you--my bad.

First of all, I wasn't referring to you by saying Tim; I was referring to Tim Challies. Challies is an excellent book reviewer and writes very good relational articles on his blog. But when he ventures out in trying to speak theologically on issues is where the wheels start to fall off the wagon. His post yesterday on Driscoll is case and point. He spoke subjectively not biblically about his praise or concern for Mark. And misappropriated Matt. 7 on fruit in the process.

This is a growing problem among younger reformed sympathetic to emerging concerns bloggers. Long on emotion, shy on doctrine.

So my apologies for the mixup.

As to two other items of concern doctrinally about Driscoll would be his views of eldership; and orthopraxy.

1. All the current issues that are smoldering at MHC surrounds church government. With young men in ministry who come to fame or power early on as Mark has, there is a tendency to misuse that power. No elder has inherent authority virtue of office. Their sole authority comes from the Word of God AND is one of servant leadership - not lording over (1 Peter 5:1-5).

What I saw at MHC last fall was a performance in their worship service; not a pastor shepherding sheep. Mark is an entertainer not an expositor. And if you notice, any defense of his ministry (even with Challies) comes on two fronts: famous men who are attending his conferences - "if they endorse him who are we to challenge that?"; AND "look at all the people coming - he must be doing something right?" Numbers and names.

The defense is never made biblically. In fact, Driscoll isn't being talked about because he is a competent expositor or dynamic preacher of God's Word as say it would be of a MacArthur or Sproul or Lawsen; but because of his self-generated controversy. He is laughing at us all and all the way to the bank.

2. There also seems to be this accommodation given to him that life doesn't matter, only the buzz words of general theology. If Mark's says "penal substitutionary atonement" everyone applauds within the reformed camp and are quick to say "see he is solid doctrinally - a Calvinist." And then his "issues" are passed over as being unimportant or as D.A. Carson so naively says, "Mark is just rough around the edges... but." Totally irresponsible for a man of his standing.

Paul's command to Timothy was to "watch your life an doctrine closely" (1 Tim. 4:12-16). The two go hand in hand concerning pastoral ministry.

I believe his doctrinally immaturity coupled with his rebellious, unrepentant foul talk is enough to place him under church discipline and temporarily require him to stand down for a season until the genuine fruits of repentance are evident.

But that would presuppose two things: 1. That his eldership is strong enough to enforce the biblical standard (Titus 1:4-9, 1 Tim. 3:1-9) and hold him accountable to it; AND 2. that Mark is humble enough to receive it and submit to it.

Here is where I place the burden of responsibility - on John Piper's shoulders. He created this platform for Driscoll, he should be responsible enough to shepherd Mark through this and say the hard things in love to him.

Grace,
Steve

gigantor1231 said...

Steve

I just want you to know that I really appreciate the clarity with which you respond!

Douglas said...

Thanks Don.

I won't be going back to get on the booze or anything.

I have just read Carla's post and that was very encouraging too. Well written. Good ol John Hendryx, he has made a stand regarding Driscoll's comments about Jesus and Monergism books wont be stocking Driscoll's book. My two most favorite theologians alive on the planet today are R. C. Sproul and J.W.H.

Just reading those last four points Steve has posted cause me to tremble. There seems to be some sort of darkness over Driscoll's life??? Thankfully God is saving some through His Word in spite of an unclean mouth. What's in the heart comes straight out the mouth. Mark Driscoll needs a short sharp shock directly from God, even a lightening bolt upon the top of his head maybe? If he is not careful he could end up eating grass like a cow.

Rod said...

For the record, I didn't mean to imply Driscoll doesn't have doctrinal problems...just that everyone recognizes his behavior is problematic. Those sympathetic to the emergent movement are ready to gloss over it until we can lay a charge of gross heresy at his feet.

For me, your words on reverence are timely and accurate. I don't know what is more doctrinal than that--reverence and holiness. And I personally think this is where the emergent church is mostly glaringly defective. Even their adherents will admit their common and even base approach to God.

In my Southern Baptist tradition, since we who hold reformed views are still in a minority, those sympathetic to emergents always use that as their trump card in defending the Acts 29 brand..."but they're reformed!!"

So what a conundrum...do you hook up with an irreverent Acts 29 Calvinist or a reverent Arminian? For me, the choice isn't that hard.

I loved your spoofs: "God in the hands of complacent sinners" and "God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in the culture." They are frighteningly accurate.

BTW, not to hijack this thread, but what do you think of John Piper's growing alliance with Driscoll? Or have you already written on this?

Carla said...

Douglas said:

"His foul jokes and stuff make me want to chuck Christianity in and go back to the bike gang scene and get on the booze and party up. An issue I'm struggling with at this present moment in time. I am finding Christianity very discouraging because of all the rot that is around."

Douglas, I read your comment and while nodding my head in complete understanding, felt tears well up in my eyes.

This is SUCH dead serious matter, that so many just want to brush aside in favor of "but... but... he's reformed!" I cannot tell you how old that has already become.

I am reformed, but I guarantee that if I posted at my blog (or did an audio post) and used the same language Driscoll does, I'd have family and friends and strangers ALL OVER MY CASE, for saying such disgusting things. I'm almost tempted to prove the point, were it even possible for me to say or write the things Driscoll does, without being so disgusted with myself for doing it.

Where I completely relate to Douglas' frustration is that I am also finding evangelical Christianity VERY discouraging and disheartening.

My hope and comfort is that God is indeed sovereign over all this putrid mess, and that it's all happening for a reason (regardless of the fact that I can't for the life of me figure out what that reason is).

An additional hope and encouragement is that there ARE faithful men and women of God that see all this for exactly what it is, and have the courage to stand up, speak out, and take the hits for that stand.

I'd say a lot more but Steve doesn't like mini-novels in his combox. Be encouraged Douglas, as ugly as all this is, God is BIGGER than all of it. I remind myself of this every time this subject comes up.

cyd said...

Carla,

Amen. I had the exact same reaction. Putrid mess is right!
BUT -- the LORD reigns and He will be glorified. We can count on it.

PS: Thank you for not indulging the temptation to "prove your point". ;-)

PDS said...

I guess I'm moving further away from Steve's position on Mark. I truly belive there is a vendette (for some reason) of some sort. Why? Because if you go back over the blogs, you will find that, by in large, they are directed at Mark or Mars Hill.

Why is the health, wealth prosperity gospel not attacked? Why a reformed brother? Why not anti-Christian views? And, we're now going as low as spelling out a difference with Mark on limited atonement? Please. There are godly men and women on both sides of this debate.

Mark teaches the gospel and has a phenomenal outreach in Seattle (and even beyond).

But there are alot on here that will drink the Campfire kool-aid without thinking through the implications.

I've said it before, but I do not agree with everything Mark says -- and, at times, I would be the first to say there could have been a better choice of words...but, what is more important? Getting the gospel right or making sure we spell check before hitting submit?

If I saw SJ puruse other ministries that are theologically lacking or outright cults, then perhaps my view will change.

Until then, perhaps the blog could be renamed the Anti-Driscoll blog for non-discerning, biblically lacking, and immature Christians.

Detoured By Travel said...

Oh boy...everyone...

I do enjoy reading this blog and absorbing the entries and comments by which we encourage one another. I'm not really even sure I know with certainty what a lot of the theological terms that have been expounded here are: postmodernism, emerging/emergent church, reformed, amyraldian, arminian, etc. I'm glad some of you do, and respect your debate on same.

But I too have taken in the MD VODcasts and PODcast distributed online. I find them repulsive and contrary to the scripture that I study. Any valid scriptural points that may be made therein are diminished and overshadowed by the manner in which they are delivered. There are so many scriptures that I feel are violated I cannot list them all (though Steve has done a good job on doing so).

I will add one to them though, Matthew 12:34 (Amplified): "You offspring of vipers! How can you speak good things when you are evil (wicked)? For out of the fullness (the overflow, the superabundance) of the heart the mouth speaks."

What is in the fullness (or depths) of the heart the mouth speaks. I have heard at minimum foul language and irreverence proceed from those casts. I have heard my Lord used as a punchline for humor. What conclusions must I draw about what is in the heart of the speaker then?

I can honestly say that I have met no perfect minister of the Gospel. I do not feel like I have the right to judge a brother or a sister. However, I am commanded by scripture to and DO have the right to choose whose ministry I will place myself under the cover of. Based on what I have seen and heard, I would NOT place myself under the cover of this ministry and would be concerned for anyone who would.

Blessings on you all.

Douglas said...

Thanks Carla,

I will come through this. You are correct, God is sovereign and in Him I put my trust.

I must remind myself to pray for Mark Driscoll and his family. And for all the other people that come to mind whose teaching and preaching I struggle with.

Rod said...

PDS:

Chill man (or woman).

What makes you think I'm non-discerning, biblically lacking, and an immature Christian?

And though I haven't been an avid reader of this blog, from what I can tell, it is hardly anti-Driscoll.

If you were offering criticism of Jehovah Witnesses, would you mention the Watchtower Tract Society and/or its current leaders?
Or if you were critiquing Catholicism, don't you think it would be reasonable to look at the Vatican and the popes?

Acts 29 is the more "conservative" branch of the larger emergent movement.

Acts 29 has a beginning, a founder and a president. It's Mark Driscoll, senior pastor of Mars Hill.

It would be irresponsible for Steve Camp to offer criticism of emergent/Acts 29 without giving attention to Driscoll/Acts 29.

It is altogether reasonable for Steve to give this criticism because it hits close to home. No other movement is currently as dangerous to mainstream/conservative/evangelical/reformed folks as Acts 29/emergent.

There's has been no vendetta here. Only a testing of one's life (ministry, preaching, behavior) against the Word of God.

Andrew Ramsey said...

steve,

i will once you stop talking about your vendetta with mark driscoll all the time. got any other people you can rip on to pass your free time?

since you've brought this whole contextualization issue on yourself, i want to speak to you missionary to missionary. my question to you is who is going to step into your house and recieve the good news if you have doctrinal pit bulls with you munching on every other heretic you can find? this does nothing for the sake of the Great Commission.

SJ Camp said...

pds
"Until then, perhaps the blog could be renamed the Anti-Driscoll blog for non-discerning, biblically lacking, and immature Christians."

I really like that! A bit long, but you've captured in a modicum of words the sentiment precisely.

PDS: I have dealt with many issues over these past few years and have covered everything from Robert Schuller, Rick Warren, T.D. Jakes, Bono, The Roman Catholic Church, Environmentalism, Inclusivism, Politics, Dobson, ECT, Muslims and Christians Together, etc.

And yes, I have written about shock the flock Driscoll. I am an "equal opportunity offender." All that I do here is apply the truth of Scripture to the issues facing the church and culture and try to encourage people to a biblical worldview.

I haven't used four letter words here (though I realize my readership from Seattle would increase by 500%). I don't do personal characterization pieces. It's doctrinal, not personal - period.

So let's stay on target here.

The reason Mark has been mentioned here lately is that he is without question the most disturbing figure in broader evangelicalism to infiltrate the reformed camp. He is controversial not because he is a great expositor or preacher of the Word of God; not because he is boldly proclaiming the gospel in the marketplace and being persecuted for it. On the contrary. He is controversial because of his juvenile, immature, ungodly, unbiblical antics.

That is worth addressing. Don't shoot me, I'm only the piano player :-). You should be angry at him for doing the things he is doing. I am just trying to apply a biblical ethic to his rants.

I appreciate you hanging in here on all this. Mark will fade soon enough. He knows it--we all know it. He is this evangelical flavor of the month. But there is damage being done in the name of the Lord and that should concern us all.

Driscoll is a lightweight biblically and theologically. In the shock department, he has a PhD. The issue is why do so many younger reformed people attracted to this guy? I know why: they get to indulge themselves by talking dirty swearing a bit, increase the drinking quotient, tell seedy stories, and still think they are cool and doctrinal.

Not so. And that is tragic.

So the good news is, as long as Driscoll keeps churning his own butter and pawning it off as biblical Christianity, I and a handful of others will keep sounding the alarm.

If you want to be serious about your faith may I recommend MacArthur, Sproul, Boice, Mohler, Duncan, Bridges, Owens, Watson, Spurgeon, Mead, Burroughs, Turretin, etc.

If you want to remain on the playground by all means keep reading Driscoll.

"Some people want to live within the sound of church and chapel bell; but I want to run a mission - a yard from the gates of hell."

Amen?

Grace and peace,
Steve
2 Cor. 4:5-7

Andrew Ramsey said...

Galatians 5:1-13 ESV
(1) For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.
(2) Look: I, Paul, say to you that if you accept circumcision, Christ will be of no advantage to you.
(3) I testify again to every man who accepts circumcision that he is obligated to keep the whole law.
(4) You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace.
(5) For through the Spirit, by faith, we ourselves eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness.
(6) For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love.
(7) You were running well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth?
(8) This persuasion is not from him who calls you.
(9) A little leaven leavens the whole lump.
(10) I have confidence in the Lord that you will take no other view than mine, and the one who is troubling you will bear the penalty, whoever he is.
(11) But if I, brothers, still preach circumcision, why am I still being persecuted? In that case the offense of the cross has been removed.
(12) I wish those who unsettle you would emasculate themselves!
(13) For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.

Debbie said...

It’s no accident that so many “young, reformed emerging people” and those concretely formulating a worldview are finding their way here to A1M and CAMPONTHIS. :-) I can’t think of a better place for them to land! I hope those who are honestly wrestling with these issues will take the time to read the many, many instructive works (some amazing writers that I had never heard of) and Scriptural commentaries that Steve posts here. You will be challenged, edified, encouraged, convicted, stretched ….

To contend for a high view of God and His Word is elemental because there is so much at stake ---it just doesn’t get any more consequential than this. Sometimes I’m tempted to see all the other divergent “issues” as nothing more than a red herring when in fact they expose and highlight a deep and overarching need to get the fundamentals right, not just in theory, but also in practice. In Luke 6:47-49, the admonition is clear in this regard. If this were only a case of “much ado about nothing”, we could wink at it and move on. Clearly, it’s bigger than that. I cannot understand how this can be treated so casually by some. It’s puzzling to me…

traitor 313 said...

From your opinion of Mr. Driscoll, I also wonder about your opinions of men like:
Bruce Ware, Tim Keller, DA Carson, Danny Akin, John Piper, Al Mohler, Mark Dever, CJ Mahaney and the countless other reformed guys who have publicly supported Mr. Driscoll.
I understand that your man MacArthur has had some run-ins with him, I had hoped that they had resolved their differences by now.
I am not trying to defend Driscoll by using these names, I believe he is competent to defend himself, I am more interested in your opinions of your reformed brethren who do not express the same concerns as you do about Mr. Driscoll.

SJ Camp said...

traitor 313
1. what does your nick mean?

2. Mohler hasn't embraced Driscoll yet - thank the Lord. The others have a blind spot when it comes to MD and MHC and they will regret it one day. But in all fairness, Keller is an emerging "mystic" of sorts; Akin thinks that Peter Kreeft is orthodox and a Christian; and Ware is a four point Arminian. The rest really should know better; and I am a bit surprised that they haven't called him to public repentance on these things.

Andrew
I have many unsaved friends and share the gospel constantly.

Just three weeks ago a young lady of 26 years old from Trinidad came to know the Lord on a teaching cruise I hosted with Jerry Bridges. She attended one Bible study on the purity of sound doctrine out of 2 Tim. and then came back the next day and heard the gospel. One of the ladies in our group shared more of the gospel with her; and by God's sovereign electing love and grace - He granted her saving faith and repentance from sin and she became a Christian.

SDG!

You see my brother, the impact of the gospel is not about our techniques, methods, gimmicks, etc. it is about the gospel "which is the power of God unto salvation." (Roms. 1:16)

This is what the emerging church hasn't realized yet. Young bucks like Driscoll think that he has to talk in a crude, nefarious way to minister to those in Seattle "because it's such an unchurched, dark area."

Unsaved people aren't looking for us to relate to them or dumb-down the gospel in these smutty tones before they will listen. In fact, they really don't respect it and can see right through it. That is why most of MHC growth is not through evangelism but attrition.

His foul verbiage and culturally driven mantra accomplishes nothing for the kingdom and brings shame to Christ. One day he will come to know this truth and the lights will finally go on... I can hardly wait for that day.

Until then, we should pray for him; love him; speak the truth to him; and call him to biblical methodology.

Grace and peace,
Steve
Col. 1:9-14

traitor 313 said...

traitor 3:13
From Romans 3:13
Their throat is an open grave;

they use their tongues to deceive.

The venom of asps is under their lips. (ESV)

It is a reminder to myself and to those around me of our treason against almighty God. Bereft of the saving Grace of Jesus Christ, I would be a mere traitor, lost and wandering.
To address this thread.
As a caution, I would suggest being careful about broad general statements about men you are not personally friends with. Whether or not your statements are true, the broad generalizations you use are not "fair" at all.
As a brother in Christ, I would like to caution you to support the very specific statements you make with quotations or other direct references to people. This applies to Driscoll, Akin, Keller, Ware or any of the others you choose to critique. You said in an earlier comment that you had listened to Driscoll's podcast, as have I. We came to different conclusions about him, and yet you did not support, with evidence, your claims.
This is all I am asking for, brother, just back up what your saying with "their" words.

Grace and Peace,

Tim

PDS said...

rob--thanks for your response, though I must admit to not following your points.

SJ--you wrote, "I really like that! A bit long, but you've captured in a modicum of words the sentiment precisely." I'm glad you liked it and took it in the spirit it was intended. A little humor and fun.

You wrote, "PDS: I have dealt with many issues over these past few years and have covered everything from Robert Schuller, Rick Warren, T.D. Jakes, Bono, The Roman Catholic Church, Environmentalism, Inclusivism, Politics, Dobson, ECT, Muslims and Christians Together, etc." Great! I've not been a reader of your blog for a very long time, so I look forward to such discussions in the future. I did comment on the Rick Warren thread.

You wrote, "He is controversial because of his juvenile, immature, ungodly, unbiblical antics." Isn't "ungodly" a word that refers to unbelievers in Scripture? Hmmm...I'd have to check it out. Anyhow, I do agree that he is controversial and share many of the concerns you voice.

You wrote, "If you want to be serious about your faith may I recommend MacArthur, Sproul, Boice, Mohler, Duncan, Bridges, Owens, Watson, Spurgeon, Mead, Burroughs, Turretin, etc." Check out my profile sometime. You'll see a number of those names listed. In fact, the top two influences in my walk with the Lord have been Sproul and Packer (as a new Christian) and MacArthur over the past many years. In fact, I went to my pastor when I started to get a hunger for God's Word and said, "Which book would you recommend?" - he said, "Have you ever heard of 'Knowing God' by Packer?" -- I said "No". It was unbelievable and launched my walk with the Lord. My pastors name? Dr. Steven J. Lawson. I've come to love Boice and Lloyd Jones. My Libronix is stuffed full with these guys...

You wrote, "If you want to remain on the playground by all means keep reading Driscoll." I've not read Driscoll, but do listen to his weekly sermons, which I do enjoy. But, the majority of the sermons I listen to, articles I read etc come from the sources above.

It's good to stir it up a bit. However, sometimes the record sounds scratchy when you get stuck on the same groove.

PDS said...

traitor--you wrote, "I understand that your man MacArthur has had some run-ins with him, I had hoped that they had resolved their differences by now."

I didn't realize that, but perhaps that sheds alot of light on the current situation. What happened?

donsands said...

"My pastors name? Dr. Steven J. Lawson."

You my brother are truly blessed with a fine pastor of the Lord.

Hey Jonathan Moorhead just spoke there. Did you hear him?

SJ Camp said...

PDS
Steve Lawsen is a great man and I am honored to call him friend. He stands head and shoulders above so many in evangelicalism. I respect him highly.

Could you ever imagine a man of God like Steve conducting himself like Driscoll does in the pulpit?

There is the best comparison on this thread I could give. Please give Steve my warmest greeting in the Lord.

traitor 313:
I didn't give broad brush strokes and I am very well read on each of these men. Personal friendship is not a qualifier on everyone I write about here. I have not exaggerated nor been deceitful my brother. I have stated accurately and clearly my concerns and didn't duck and run as some bloggers do.

I appreciate your posting here, but Roms. 3 where you quoted from is talking about the unregenerate not Christians if you meant it in that fashion.

Grace and peace,
Steve
2 Cor. 4:5-7

PS - Do any of the Driscoll supporters here have Scripture which they think condones Mark's demeanor as a pastor and justifies the doctrinal moorings I have tried to list here? I have yet to hear a biblical argument by anyone from that camp anytime. Thank you.

littlegal_66 said...

“Regardless of his practice, is there any doctrine taught my Mr. Driscoll that is inconsistent with the bible? Forget for a second his ‘guttural language.’ Do you think he is, biblically speaking, outside the bounds of Biblical Christianity in terms of doctrine?”

Steve took the time to respond to traitor's above question, but I'm with Rod ("why delineate"), Cyd ("doctrine is as doctrine does"), and gigantor on the question being initially posed...........and I'd like to ask this: Can the two really be separated……..do not the two go hand in hand? I mean, aren’t they kinda interdependent, (for lack of a better term)? I think it’s sort of like asking a physically abused woman to forget for a second the beatings she repeatedly suffers at the hands of her husband, then asking her if she thinks he is, biblically speaking, within the bounds of the Biblical model of a Godly husband. (If he is abusing his spouse, is it necessary to ask if a fellow exhibits the marks of a Biblical husband?) (Guess it's just the fundamentalist in me that causes me to ponder these things.....:-D).

littlegal_66 said...

sjcamp said: "Lastly, he does not have a correct view of the total depravity of man. I say this, because he believes that his methods are necessary for the efficaciousness of the gospel - an Arminian belief."

This is such a critical observation, especially when establishing approaches to ministry, that it can't be overemphasized and bears close examination. I never really thought about it, but yes, his unflinching insistence on doing church Mark's way definitely reveals much about his actual viewpoint on the T, even if he's unaware of it. Thanks for the food for thought.

carla--
You said:
"My hope and comfort is that God is indeed sovereign over all this putrid mess, and that it's all happening for a reason (regardless of the fact that I can't for the life of me figure out what that reason is)."

Once again, in one fell swoop, you put this whole thing back in the proper perspective. (And using the very topic that I know you and I could both discuss for hours on end with each other.....) Thanks.

PDS--
Steve wrote to you:
"So the good news is, as long as Driscoll keeps churning his own butter and pawning it off as biblical Christianity, I and a handful of others will keep sounding the alarm."

Hmmm.......seems like some little_gal posted something a tad similar to you on the previous comment thread……..see, told ya so. :-)
....Seriously, glad to see you're planning on roasting marshmallows around the Campsite for awhile......hope there will continue to be good & profitable dialogue with you here.
--LG66

PDS said...

I should clarify. He WAS my pastor in Little Rock AR at the Bible Church of Little Rock. That was from around 1992-1995 when I served in the Air Force.

SJ--you wrote, "Could you ever imagine a man of God like Steve conducting himself like Driscoll does in the pulpit?" No. But, I don't think we should compare Driscoll to Lawson, but Driscoll to Scripture. I think you made that point previously. Theologically -- from what I watched, he's sound. His delivery? At times it could be better. I have never stated otherwise.

If he has theological positions that are unbiblical, I'd like to know. At this point, I recall "limited atonement", but I would hope we all agree that such issue should not cause division among brothers and sisters in Christ.

Bob said...

---
Missional is the new term now. No one quite knows what it means, but that's the beauty of this movement. They like the ambiguity and still call it the reformed faith.
---

Steve:

Thank you for those very astute comments. My reformed church is entering the 'missional' mentality and I have not been able to 'define' what missional really is.

It is very ambiguous and nebulous and the more questions I ask as I research and try to be Berean, I do not get answers. I get more questions because it seems as if the end results (and I really wonder if they even have a end result goal or are going to 'play-it-by-ear' and act like 'open theists' about this) will be not to raise up disciples prepared to go forth and fulfill the Great Commission, but to re-interpret and contextualize the infallible Word of God and bring in some more financial and human resources in an attempt to synergize man-made actions for results.

Jim said...

My comment is out of place considering the conversation, but I just happened to to stop by and wanted to say that I am glad to see Camp on This active again - you are such an encouragement!

Anon said...

Word is you're sheltering a murderer of a small child..

Robin said...

Amazing - simply amazing. You are one of the wonderful teachers that I came in contact with on the internet that opened my eyes to true faith. What I learned has not made me popular - just the opposite. But I am secure in my beliefs based on the Word of God.

Bless you - bless your ministry. I join you in pounding on Witt's door!