God considers Mark Driscoll’s Mars Hill church

god considers mark driscoll mars hill church cartoon by nakedpastor david hayward

I remember reading Bono saying Bob Dylan’s and Van Morrison’s style of Christianity was “Old Testament”.

This is how I think of Mark Driscoll’s style of Christianity… lots of wrath, punishment, and exclusivity.

In fact, THE LASTING SUPPER has some survivors of Mars Hill and this kind of Old Testament style Christianity. They’re awesome!

SHOP

About David Hayward

David Hayward runs the blog nakedpastor as a graffiti artist on the walls of religion where he critiques religion… specifically Christianity and the church. He also runs the online community The Lasting Supper where people can help themselves discover, explore and live in spiritual freedom.

  • http://morechrist.blogspot.com K.W. Leslie

    I seem to recall this one time in Genesis, when three people decided to visit Sodom because of the things their leader had heard about it. Wrath was involved there too.

  • ccws

    The Hell (literally) of it is, “Old Testament” style religion is a product of the Christian imagination & bears no relation to Judaism. In all my 60 years – including 15 living with a Jewish guy – I’ve never met a Jew who had such a nasty view of Ha-Shem. In fact, for the most part the Jews I’ve known have been far more Christlike than many “Christians,” and I think it could be said that Jesus was the original Reconstructionist Jew – the polar opposite of “Reconstructionist” “Christianity”! Irony meter BUSTED. :-)

  • http://lotharlorraine.wordpress.com/ Lotharson

    Since the Bible is hopelessly self-contradictory, every Conservative Christian is going to have to pick and choose what he believes.

    Fundamentalists, especially Calvinist ones, pick the worst parts of Scripture to build up their doctrines.

    I am convinced that Calvinism is one of the greatest blasphemies on earth.
    It teaches that God predetermines people to sin and will eternally torture most of them as a punishment for misdeeds they could not possibly have avoided.

    The deity worshiped by Mark Driscoll and John Piper is morally far worse than Hitler or Stalin.

  • http://lotharlorraine.wordpress.com/ Lotharson

    I think that the New Testament teaches conditional immortality and hell as utter destruction.
    And Jesus did not threaten prostitutes or tax collectors but religious bigots.

  • Mark

    I’m totally with you on that. The contradictions and the Calvinism, and the comparison to Hitler/Stalin. Theologically, it really doesn’t matter whether an all-knowing God would choose to predestine most of his creation to eternal torture, or just know that by specifying such a tight requirement (Jesus – through word of mouth – or Hell), most of humanity would end up in Hell. Pretty much the same either way. I think we’ve discussed that I don’t believe in that God, or in Hell, or the exclusivity of “Christianity,” whatever definition any random individual chooses to give that term.

  • Mark

    After most of my 60+ years blissfully ignorant of most of the atrocities committed against the Jews by “Christians,” it is really pissing me off to see so many non-Jews interpreting the Jewish scriptures in such a way as to tell them they don’t really understand what God told them. I can totally handle that Jesus came to offer us a different way; but, If we really believe that the Old Testament is the inspired Word of God, or even if we want to understand more about the culture that gave us these holy scriptures, what we should do is take courses in Judaism, to get a better understanding of what God was supposed to have been telling the Jews. I’ve recently met a couple of Rabbis, and am having some interesting conversations.

  • Caryn LeMur

    First, I loved the cups: Jesus seems to have hot coffee, God has something looking like chocolate with marshmallows/whip cream and a spoon, and the Holy Spirit has tea… rofl!! Love it!!

    I am dieting again due to 6 lbs over best BMI… but this is important for me to control for my health. So, after deep consideration, I realize I should choose the Holy Spirit’s approach to wrath but my tongue realllllly want’s God’s cup of wrath…. rofl.

    If the New Testament is a written ‘testimony’ of a new covenant (life-long contract), well, it seems to me that the cup of wrath has indeed become a cup of chocolate discipline with healing ‘revenge of God’ sprinkled on top.

    When I pour out a cup of New Cov Hot Choco on my enemies, I always like to leave a little room for God’s marshmallows on top…. and sometimes, I don’t even pour in the chocolate, because it is too hot to handle.

    Loved the cartoon! I can relate very easily due to personal family situations.

    Much love in Christ always and unconditionally; Caryn

  • JosephBrown660

    I find your portrayal to be highly inaccurate. Have you ever visited Mars Hill? Have you ever listened to Mark preach? He points to Jesus in every sermon. He is very New Testament in his preaching. He likely causes some people to feel uncomfortable as he preaches from God’s Holy Word which has the tendency to point out error in our lives.

  • Don13

    except that MD is rather judgmental & misogynistic. he’s leading people down a judgmental path. the sooner you & others realize this the better we’ll all be…

  • http://nakedpastor.com/ nakedpastor

    That’s a silly reason. I’ve never been to Russia, but I know enough about Russia that I wouldn’t want to be a gay citizen of it. Same with Driscoll and his church. I know enough about it. I don’t need to go.

  • R Vogel

    You keep using that word ‘Jesus’. I do not think in means what you think it means….

  • R Vogel

    David, you definitely win on the greatest depiction of the hold ghost ever! It almost make me a Trinitarian! I would love to have these three on a t-shirt

  • Gary

    So you believe the account of Sodom and Gomorrah represents a factual/historical event?

  • Al Cruise

    Anyone can point to Jesus in a sermon. By their fruits you will know them, both as individuals and as a group. I know first hand what Acts29 pastors are like. Avoid at all cost.

  • klhayes

    Absolutely.

  • JosephBrown660

    You have NO clue who Mark Driscoll is. You have formulated an opinion based upon assumptions. You and Mark are not even in the same league. Mark believes and preaches the Word…even the uncomfortable aspects thereof. You blaspheme it.

  • JosephBrown660

    He renders his opinions based upon the Word of God. Do you have a better means to base your opinions on?

  • JosephBrown660

    Please expound upon your experience with Acts 29 pastors and Driscoll.
    Mark preaches about Jesus. The Living True Jesus, not the new age hippy, happy huggy Jesus that a lot of people mistakenly worship.

  • JosephBrown660

    I believe Jesus is the Son of God, sent to live a sinless life, sent to n die on the cross for those who repent of their sins and to arise and conquer death and to ascend to heaven. Who do you think he is? I suggest reading Matthew 7:21-23.

  • Gary

    You have crossed the line. I hope David simply bans your ass. When you go into a man’s blog and make offensive and ridiculous accusations, and then call him a blasphemer, you reveal yourself to be controlled by hate and fear. I say take you fucking personal attacks elsewhere.

  • http://nakedpastor.com/ nakedpastor

    We’re not in the same league because I try not to abuse the word or the people who love it.

  • R Vogel

    I think he is the person who refused to accuse the women about to be stoned, the one who made wine from water so people could continue to have a good time at a wedding, the one who wept, the one who was moved by faith and love, the one who openly fellowshipped with sinners, the one who willing went to his death to shatter every single us v. them paradigm, state, religion, even family, that separates us from each other (love your neighbor as yourself) and consequently from G*d. I believe he is the one who accepted the violence, blows, and public humiliation of crucifixion in order to even destroy the us v. them paradigm between us and G*d. We suffer so he suffered. He is us, and therefore redeemed us. He is the one who through the blood, and sweat, and mud, and other people’s spit muttered “Forgive them” and “It is finished”. I suggest your read the entire NT and get acquainted with the character of Christ, rather than the few verses you think support yet another us v. them paradigm erected in the name of Christ.

  • JosephBrown660

    Yes, for two reasons:
    1. God’s word and Christ himself refer to it
    2. There have been ruins discovered that are thought to be those of Sodom and Gomorrah. A quick Google search will reveal the details.

  • http://nakedpastor.com/ nakedpastor

    You’re caught in a nasty loop there joseph.

  • JosephBrown660

    I love the Word, it is the guide for my life. I attempt to adhere to it. You however do not believe it to be the inspired Word of God. Mark believes it to be such and preaches ALL aspects of it…some of which people find offensive and uncomfortable. Coming to the cross as a wretched sinner, in repentance requires some level of discomfort. You are NOT even close to Driscoll.

  • JosephBrown660

    How tolerant of you.

  • Gary

    I have ZERO tolerance for fundamentalist extremists spreading their abusive swill. The things you say and the way you behave represents a great perversion to everything Jesus stood for.

  • http://nakedpastor.com/ nakedpastor

    I’m not even trying to be. Get out while you can Jo.

  • JosephBrown660

    Jesus suffered immensely for our sins. However, Jesus required people to change. What were his last words to the adulterous woman? Did he tell her to remain in her sins? He never instructed a person to remain in their sins but required them to change. I accept Him, and Him alone as the Lord of my life, my Redeemer and my personal Savior. Do you?

  • Gary

    You mean he renders his opinions based upon his huge ego and uses them to abuse and harm all who would follow him.

  • http://nakedpastor.com/ nakedpastor

    Do I suffer immensely for my sins? Yes I do. And people like you and Driscoll seem to be the most used weapons of torture.

  • Gary

    Brilliant!!!

  • Al Cruise

    Go on google and type “mark driscoll plagiarism allegations” read and see for yourself how close he follows the word of God. Everyone should do this to be more informed, and draw their own conclusions about today’s religious leaders. Listen to your heart when you do.

  • Don13

    yes, Jesus is my Lord, Joe. yes, Jesus wants us to change. yes, He calls us to listen & obey…but does He want us to change b/c we’re afraid of God or does He want us to change b/c we begin to experience, learn, know His immense love & forgiveness for us. b/c we begin to believe that He knows what’s best for us. b/c we want to honor Him & be a part of something greater than ourselves & know that immense love Yahweh extends to us, to help bring His Kingdom to earth. we don’t bring God’s Kingdom to earth by railing against others…look at the NT. Jesus rails at the teachers, the leaders, the Pharisees. not those that know they are lost, need Him, hopeless sinners…this isn’t hippy, huggy nonsense like MD (& others) suggest. it’s actually harder. it’s harder to love. it’s harder to not judge. it’s harder to forgive. it’s harder to accept someone & love them even if you don’t agree w/ their choices…i used to have a lot of the views that you have. treated people (& still can) the way you, other’s & MD do…it’s really easy to live that way. put God in a box. don’t try to accept people as they are. be judgmental. focus far more on the wrath of God rather than His love. don’t forgive…no. no more. i’ll take the harder road & learn to let Jesus change me. love me. then i’ll be able to do a better job of loving others. showing Christ to others…that’s not easy.

  • http://morechrist.blogspot.com K.W. Leslie

    Doesn’t make any difference whether it’s factual/historical or mythological/parabolic. It’s in there so we can learn from it, not so we can say, “I don’t believe it; therefore it has nothing to say to me.”

  • Gary

    Hmm…you read quite a bit into my question…and still chose to avoid answering it I see. Let me ask another version. Do you believe the story represents the true nature of God? For instance, would He actually choose to turn a woman into a pillar of salt because she let her curiosity about what such total destruction actually looked like get the best of her? I mean…that sounds kind of petty and vindictive…not the attributes I would in any way look up to or worship. So my original question very much speaks to what it is we SHOULD be learning from the story.

  • http://morechrist.blogspot.com K.W. Leslie

    “Doesn’t make any difference” is, I believe, a totally valid answer. I don’t accept the whole is/isn’t binary choice.

    Yes, I do believe it represents God’s nature. Of course, it has to be interpreted through the lens of Jesus, otherwise we’re gonna read our own pettiness and vindictiveness into it. (Or others’ bad attitudes, depending on what we grew up hearing. I grew up Fundamentalist, so I’ve still got a lot of that to be rid of too.)

    Sodom getting flattened was because God didn’t want a city of gang-rapists to go unchecked. Abraham talked him down to sparing it if there were ten righteous people in the town, and considering how unrighteous the “righteous” people of Lot’s family were, God’s qualifications were mighty generous.

    Did he turn Lot’s wife into a pillar of salt? No; his angels told her to get out of town lest such a thing happen to her, and apparently she wasn’t worried enough to heed their warning.

    Looping all this back to Driscoll: Most of my problem with him is, once again, his reading his own bad attitudes into his preaching. He preaches God’s wrath as a convenient substitute for his wrath. He needs Jesus. Trouble is, he thinks he has him already, and therefore needn’t change.

  • JosephBrown660

    How so? Both the divine and the secular prove it to exist. Please elaborate.

  • JosephBrown660

    I have done so and am aware of the attacks on him. There are always attacks on someone that dares to speak the truth and hold to God’s word. Also most of the allegations have been shown to be of little or no merit.

  • JosephBrown660

    I can feel the love! Don’t pop a vein there Gar. You may wish to consider some counseling to deal with that hatred. And by the way…I think you have a total misconception of who Jesus was and is. Hope you enjoy heat! Because you gonna be in it for a long spell unless you find out who Jesus really is and what He cane to earth to do.

  • JosephBrown660

    Why do you malign Mark Driscoll? I can understand someone disagreeing with him. However, you by your own admission know little about him other than what you heard from some disenchanted former parishioners. Why don’t you spend some time listening to his online sermons and develop your own opinion?

  • http://nakedpastor.com/ nakedpastor

    I’m sure Jo that you consider what you just wrote as love. I wouldn’t be surprised.

  • Mark

    But God destroyed two cities completely. Were there no decent women and/or children in those cities? And Lot was saved, who offered his daughters to be raped by these men who were worthy of destruction. What do you take from that part of the story?

  • JosephBrown660

    In order to receive forgiveness, one must first recognize that they are a sinner, repent of their sins and rely on Christ. Jesus never told someone to continue to live in their sins. We all fail and fall short. Mark does not abuse people. He points out what sin is. Having one’s conscience pricked by the Holy Spirit is not abuse. Mark bases his sermons upon the Word of God. He calls a spade a spade. Christ did the same thing.
    Mark does not, nor do I put God in a box. God is too big for that.
    I gather by what you are saying that it is ok for someone to remain in their sin and keep on living a life that is contrary to what God instructs? If that is the case I totally disagree with you. Before a drug addict or an alcoholic can come to healing, they have to recognize their need for healing. Same for a sinner, we have to recognize that we are sinners and then come to the cross. In order to do that we need to know what constitutes sin. Jesus can and does heal all IF you come to him and acknowledge your need for a Savior and if you acknowledge your sins and that you will struggle to overcome them.
    Some pastors can love their sinners straight into hell by never teaching the need for repentance and change. Others do so by being afraid to tell the truth as to what sin really is. Culture has totally, and incorrectly, reclassified many sins as either normal behavior or a disease.

  • Mark

    Just because a place exists doesn’t mean God destroyed it. There are preachers who said Hurricane Katrina was “God’s wrath,” but that doesn’t make it so. This story was written by men, not God. Men who were trying to make sense of their relationship with God. Men apparently more like Mark Driscoll than, say John Spong or Marcus Borg.

    If you believe these are the literal words of God, what prevents you from accepting Joseph Smiths golden plates?

  • Mark

    Of course, back then, women were just property, like cattle and sheep. Job lost all his possessions (health, family, other property), but it was all OK in the end, because he got his health back, and a fresh set of livestock and children.

    You know what they say, “kids are kids.”

  • Gary

    I would prefer that my comment have been left intact. When a man tells me I am going to burn in hell because I don’t embrace his abusive bullshit…calling him an arrogant prick is totally appropriate. I think you are censuring the wrong poster.

  • Gary

    Your misconception of Jesus and what He came to do has turned you into the very Pharisees He rebuked so strongly. Jesus told me to be on my guard against your yeast. (Matthew 16) Your teaching is destructive and totally maligns the character of Jesus.

    Jesus said your kind are “broods of vipers”, “hypocrites”, “blind guides”, “blind fools”, “Whitewashed tombs”, “full of hypocrisy and wickedness”. Jesus warned that “the love of most will grow cold”.

    I agree with Him. Your “yeast” has no power here. You have lost the love…take your hate elsewhere.

  • http://nakedpastor.com/ nakedpastor

    I am told every day that I’m going to Hell. That’s their theology. It makes sense to them. They might even believe they’re telling me that in love because they hope this will scare me into their way of thinking. But I have to draw a line somewhere and name-calling is an easy one. I agree his comment is unbelievably arrogant, even haughty. I wanted to leave it so others can see what we’re up against.

  • Gary

    Yeah I know. And I am not mad at you of course…just expressing an opinion. I do think if you are going to tolerate such blatant abuse (calling you a blasphemer and mockingly consigning me to hell) on your blog, then you might consider a little more latitude in the rebukes such behavior generates. Standing up to such abuse, even bluntly, is surely not more worthy of a line in the sand than the actual abuse? If so, we would have to censure Jesus’ seven Woes to the Pharisees from the bible.

  • Gary

    I don’t know what reading about God’s slaughter through the lens of Jesus even means. If we accept the OT represents God’s nature…then we must accept that He is the kind of God who will commit genocide of entire civilizations, slaughter innocent children for the sin of their parents, kill thousands of His own chosen people simply because they complained He was killing too many of them, would literally wipe out every man woman and innocent child on the face of the earth save one family and then later regret it. What kind of lens can Jesus provide on these supposed acts of God that would make them somehow “holy”? We recognize today that each of these atrocities represents profoundly immoral actions the likes of which are committed by monsters of humanity. Not the behavior of a perfect being we are to emulate, and worship even.

    What the lens of Jesus teaches me is that the superstitions of blood thirsty civilizations do not represent the “nature of god”. We can learn much from the OT, but it is not to be trusted to in any way represent God.

  • Don13

    i agree w/ almost everything you just said, Joe. i don’t think we are called to stay in our sin. doesn’t mean we won’t struggle through it. doesn’t mean some of us won’t experience total healing from some sin here on earth…you don’t want to see it so i won’t argue w/ you about it but MD is a bully…peace.

  • http://morechrist.blogspot.com K.W. Leslie

    It always seems to come back to the killing, doesn’t it? God kills people (or lets them be killed, or otherwise permits atrocities) and therefore God’s immoral.

    Which, in my experience, tends to be the usual complaint of people who feel they’ve been wronged in some way: “God let this evil crap happen to me, therefore he sucks, or isn’t there.” Their entirety of their agnosticism is based on their own bitterness. But enough about me.

    The lens of Jesus means that we put this stuff down for a bit, get to know Jesus personally and become familiar with his character, then read the Old Testament again. Not assume, “Jesus is nice, but God is mean”—the old cliché which proves we’ve done no such thing.

  • Don13

    you have NO business telling anyone whether they are going to hell or not, Joe. you don’t know Gary’s heart let alone his position w/ Christ based on comments posted here. show some humbleness & apologize.

  • Gary

    I don’t quite follow your analogy. We are not talking about random acts that we don’t understand, (personal tragedy for instance) but rather actions that according to the OT God Himself specifically chose and committed. Yes…if God Himself commits profoundly immoral acts, then He is indeed immoral. We are not talking about some ignorant preacher claiming tornadoes and hurricanes and such are God’s willful actions. This is about a book we call scripture proclaiming God to be the kind of monster who does these things.

    Does it always come back to the killing? Well not for me it doesn’t because I have never killed anyone whether they be innocent or guilty. But according to the OT, God has. So in seeking to evaluate these pieces of literature, which claim to portray God, I must evaluate what their portrayal of Him means and if that is something which I am prepared to believe in or accept. The God portrayed in the OT is often times very vindictive, petty, and wrathful, many times in ways that are profoundly immoral. You bet it comes back to the killing. (Why would you seek to downplay such behavior?) I find many of the behaviors identified in the OT to be completely contrary to the nature of Christ and therefore not to be trusted as accurate.

  • R Vogel

    Ahhh, the big IF. You see the IF/THEN construction is correctly called a conditional statement. There is no room for conditionals in my understanding of the unconditional love of G*d. IF I could choose G*d, then the law would have been sufficient and Christ’s death was meaningless. IF I can choose not to accept G*d that my will is supreme over G*d desires (assuming you believe that G*d desires to save all people). IF it is incumbent upon me to come the Jesus and accept him, then I have reason to boast since I have been saved by the work of my will not by the unconditional love of G*d through Christ.
    I don’t view the words “It is finished” to mean, “My part in this is finished, now the ball’s in your court”

  • R Vogel

    Perhaps you have never considered that spending eternity with the likes of you and MD is not the greatest selling point for your religion. (Shamelessly borrowed from ‘Pastrix’)

  • Gary

    “I don’t view the words “It is finished” to mean, “My part in this is finished, now the ball’s in your court”

    Absolutely LOVE this statement!!!

  • R Vogel

    ……narrow, selective and self-serving interpretation of the Word of G*d. Rule of Thumb: When your G*d hates all the same people you do, you might want to make sure your not looking in the mirror.

  • R Vogel

    Do you believe the story represents the true nature of God?
    So I don’t view much of what is in the old testament as historical. Even that which has some basis in actual event is probably like most ancient ‘history’ which means there is a lot of stuff overlayed on top of it.
    That aside, my question would be does the story say less about G*d’s nature or more about ours? How often do we know the right thing to do, but for whatever reason don’t do it, which leads to our destruction? Looking at the OT through the lens of Christ for me means looking at it as an allegory showing our need for G*d’s love. Even the structure of the story, Abraham convinces G*d to withhold his wrath if even 10 people could be found out of how many? 100, 1000, 10000? And even that couldn’t be satisfied. I search my own heart and think, if I could only find 10% good, or 1%, or 0.1% I may be worth saving. But no. Like the Apostles in response to Jesus’ call to the rich man I think, “Who then can be saved?” and Jesus’ response to me is “With man this is impossible….” Now these aren’t the only lessons in the OT, but taken as a whole for me this is a big one.

  • Al Cruise

    LOL !!!! Your response is a good example of Matthew 15:14.

  • Gary

    I totally agree that the stories have much to say about our nature as opposed to God’s. In the context of the examples I cited, I believe the lesson to be learned is that we can be very fearful, and will seek to explain difficult events by creating a god who mirrors our own fears, and weaknesses. Hence a warring and blood thirsty people will also have a warring and blood thirsty god. I in no way accept that these stories of God’s wrath poured out upon the innocent represents any type of reality regarding the nature of God. We may learn much about ourselves by reading the OT, but not so much about God.

  • R Vogel

    That certainly is in there too. There is no way, in my view, to construct a view of G*d where she orders the genocide of an entire people. I find the idea of an evolution of G*d from a tribal god among many to sole monotheistic G*d that I first read in Karen Armstrong’s books to be compelling. But I also think there is meaning to be had beyond that. Otherwise how could the venerable Hillel have said ‘That which is unpleasant to you, do not to your neighbor. That is the whole law and the rest but it’s exposition.’?

  • R Vogel

    May I not only not be in the same league, may I not even be playing the same game!

  • http://religiouscomics.net/ Jeff P

    For me it isn’t about the OT killing. As bad as that is, it really isn’t much different than someone wiping down their counter-top with bleach – killing millions of bacteria cells. (God is to us like we are to bacteria cells). The problem I have is with the NT where God will eternally punish people for the crime of not believing the right things. Some say it isn’t God actively punishing because it is our choice to go to hell… But I say that only a monster would set up such an ontology of people going to hell (by default) if they don’t believe the right stuff. Therefore, I can’t believe in any such definition of God that includes a judgment and a duality in an eternal afterlife.
    I also don’t consider scripture to be evidence. I consider scripture to just be the beliefs of the people that wrote scripture. Nothing more nothing less.

  • Cecilia Davidson

    Given Driscoll’s own words, we need not assume.

  • Cecilia Davidson

    No, he renders the word of god based on his opinion.

  • JosephBrown660

    You and I differ vastly on this one. I believe the Bible IS the inspired Word of God. Therefore I take what is in it as the Truth.
    Your position leaves you with no solid foundation or truth to set your values on.
    I am interested on how you came to your conclusion about how the Bible is solely the work of men and not inspired by God.
    Do you believe Jesus is the Son of God? Do you believe He died and rose again? What does sin mean to you?

  • JosephBrown660

    What role does repentance and change play in your viewpoint? You and I are not far apart, I totally get the amazing act of grace. However, Jesus never told people to remain in sin. You seem to focus all on the love (which is extremely important) however one must have a contrite heart and seek to obey and follow God’s will. God hates sin, bad things happen to people that live in sin…even Christians…that fall into sin. God’s blessing departs from those that live immoral sinful lives. That DOES not mean that they are not saved, but that they will pay for their sins. Check out what happened to David, Moses etc when they went contrary to the will of God. We cannot live perfect lives and we all sin but need to be repentant and strive to change.

  • Mark

    Here’s how: I look at the stories and many of them make no sense – like God’s angels being OK with Lot offering his daughters to be raped if the men would be satisfied with them and leave the men alone. Secondly, ALL the religious books claim to be the inspired word of God, and that all others are not the truth. So what this comes down to is shopping – making an evaluation of the merchants and their products, and then picking one or more. You have decided the bible, and only the bible, is the inspired Word of God. I have decided all the books are inspired in some manner, but none carry the sole, literal, Word of God. You have no proof for your position, and I have none for mine. But the God I try to follow doesn’t “save” the guy who sends his daughters out to get raped. Nor does he tell “his people” (as if the other people are not also his) to commit genocide on their enemies, killing ALL the men, ALL the women, and ALL the children. If that’s your God, I wouldn’t want to spend eternity with you and Him.

    I do believe that God is in us – ALL of us – and especially in the relationships we establish (whenever two or more are gathered…). I believe that Jesus came to show us another way to live God’s creation than rigidly adhering to a set of laws. I’m convinced he did die, and I don’t really care whether he rose again. And you can tag me with any label you choose, it matters not to me.

    Sin is when we choose not to see that everyone is our neighbor, that we are all connected, that the homeless guy on the corner needs food, and the poor of Iran need food, and here we sit complaining about our jobs being outsourced overseas, as if some woman making shirts in Bangladesh is a lesser person than an American woman.

  • R Vogel

    Can you explain what ‘conditional immorality’ means? (Haven’t seen your posts in awhile – hope all is well)

  • Gary

    Mark I really enjoyed reading this.

    One thing that always strikes me about those who would challenge us is the notion that we have no solid foundation or truth to set our values on. What cracks me up about that statement is that for them it seems more important to pick a side and proclaim it perfect then it is to actually evaluate whether or not the “values” they proclaim are worth a shit. With a straight face, they will defend a god of vengeance, genocide, petty murder, slaughter, eternal torture, etc., etc., etc., and proclaim that they have some sort of moral high ground. The insanity of it has become striking to me.

  • http://lotharlorraine.wordpress.com/ Lotharson

    Humans are mortal by their very nature.
    Immortality is a gift that God gives to all who truly love Him.

    Many atheists do desire God (without knowing Him) and will sincerely choose Him on the other side of the grave.

    But self-righteous bigots (both religious and non-religious) such as the particular pharisees our Lord confronted don’t desire a God of perfect love but their own idol they created.
    And since Love cannot be forced upon a person, they will cease to exist if God sees they don’t wish Him.

    I believe that eternal torment is a absurd and completely immoral doctrine.
    The doctrine that all person “dying without Christ” won’t make to heaven is also absurd and repugnant.

    However, it does not clash with my moral intuitions to believe that Fred Phelps (or Hitler for that matter) will be judged, humiliated and utterly destroyed so that he will be no more .

    I utterly reject Biblical inerrancy http://lotharlorraine.wordpress.com/2013/09/18/on-the-inspiration-of-the-bible-and-other-books-von-der-interpretation-der-bibel-und-anderen-buchern/
    but find it interesting that this view of the afterlife is the most likely interpretation of the passages, provided one consider the Old Testament imagery in its own context.

    Cheers.

  • R Vogel

    Thanks for the clarification.

  • Mark

    Yeah. What he doesn’t realize is that none of us has a “solid foundation.”

  • Gary

    I have come to reduce the values I consider to be absolute to one. The law of love. I think this is the closest thing we have to a universally accepted moral construct. We find it in some fashion in nearly every religious and secular philosophy and I personally am comfortable thinking of it as a “truth”. (Though recognizing there are still some who disagree) But for me…I am ok with calling it truth.

  • JosephBrown660

    The beauty of the inspired Word is that none of the characters except one is very human and susceptible to poor choices. Lot was one of those. He still had a faith in God.
    I cannot say it any other way. You are living in an illusion that has no foundation. The Word of God is the only foundation. Do we understand it and can we explain all aspects of it? No. That is where faith enters in.
    You are correct regarding sin but it is much greater than that. Sin is choosing to go against the Will of God.
    All of the other religions are counterfeit.

  • JosephBrown660

    See above. Choose your own foundation. There will be a day when our foundations are tested.

  • JosephBrown660

    Don, we have common ground.
    We disagree on Mark Driscoll. I attend Mars Hill whenever I am in the Seattle area which is fairly often. Mark always points to Jesus, he illustrates the grace found in Christ. Mark does illustrate Scripture and points out the hard things contained therein. Some people are afraid to deal with the difficult topics…not Mark. He bases all of his beliefs on what is contained in the Bible. Some of those points do not resonate well with progressive people. Nonetheless those uncomfortable issues are addressed in the Bible.

  • JosephBrown660

    I am going to heaven solely by the Grace of God. Where are you going?

  • JosephBrown660

    Don, by their works you will know them. It is fairly safe to draw a conclusion on someone that espouses beliefs contrary to the Word of God. False teachers and all. There is a fair bit of Scripture dedicated to that topic.

  • JosephBrown660

    Please elaborate. How familiar are you with him and his message? Have you ever attended a service at Mars Hill? Or are you like others that malign just because a few people got their feelings hurt when Mark pointed out that their lives are not in accordance with God’s Word?

  • Mark

    I would have been content to just drop it, except for your last sentence. I find that – ant you – to be the height of arrogance. If I was having this discussion with someone on Youtube, I would now be calling you an asshole; but, we try to be more civilized than that here. Sometimes I am just caught at a wrong moment, and have more than the usual amount of trouble with my civility.

    Feel free to get in the last word, JosephBrown660; but you will hear no more from me after this.

  • JosephBrown660

    How so is his view points narrow and self-serving? He ALWAYS points to Christ not to himself. Is he perfect. No. There are none that are perfect. He has touched a lot of lives in a positive manner in the cities Mars Hill is in.

  • JosephBrown660

    That is totally false. You have no clue about what you are saying in regards to Driscoll.

  • Gary

    For some…all we can do is leave them to wallow in their ignorance.

    I have enjoyed reading your contributions here.

  • Mark

    I am finding a few folks around here that I feel I am developing a connection with. Just a few, but you are one. I look forward to David’s next grenade.

  • Don13

    judge not, lest you be judged…

  • Gary

    There it is again. You MUST believe what I do or my boogey man god figure will burn your ass in hell for all eternity.

    LOL

  • Gary

    If it is “solely by the grace of God”, then logically all of us get to go.

    Cool!!!!

  • Cecilia Davidson

    No, i’m pretty sure i’m right. You and Driscoll have a lot in common – one of which is the attempted shaming of those who dare to speak out against abuses of the bible.

  • Cecilia Davidson

    I have been to enough services of similar substance to state that Driscoll is not uncommon and his behavior and message are predictable and noted enough to not assume anything.

  • Cecilia Davidson

    And your comment (There will be a day …) is why Christianity is figuratively going to hell in a handbasket – so quick to dismiss and judge with threats.


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