A couple of days ago I posted a smart-alecky entry about the controversy surrounding Rob Bell and his alleged belief in universalism, suggesting (by means of humor) that perhaps his celebrity is just another passing, naval-gazing, fad on the saw dust trail that is American Evangelicalism. But after I received a stinging rebuke from an Evangelical friend (who would have undoubtedly gotten my humor if I were a middle aged blonde woman with dreadlocks), I took some time to read up on Pastor Bell and find out about his congregation, Mars Hill, and their beliefs. Although I think “Mars Hill” is a weird name for a church (my own preference, if you’re into biblical geography and artifacts, is Lazarus’ Tomb or Herod’s Platter), I think they may be on to something. If you read the beliefs section of the Mars Hill website, you will discover a “narrative theology” that is not the Henry- Emerson-Fosdick-as-hipster caricature that one would be led to believe if one just read certain Reformed blogs (that shall remain nameless, though one rhymes with “Godspell competition”).
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