“With a skillful mix of bold presentation, clear biblical teaching, and compassion for those who are hurting the most—in particular, women who are victims of sexual and physical abuse and assault—Driscoll has taken biblical Christianity into cultural corners previously unexplored by evangelicals. In the same year that he spoke at a conference with notable contemporary theologians like John Piper and Tim Keller, he also discussed biblical sexuality as a guest on , was featured on , and preached for Rick Warren at Saddleback Community Church.”
"I’m happy to have my family join me. Grace, my wife of 19 years, will be writing here as well. She will be focusing on issues related to being a Godly woman, wife, mother, and friend—things she’s particularly passionate about. She is very sweet and helpful, and will help balance out my occasional moods.
And, our oldest daughter Ashley, who is now entering high school, will be writing as well. She’ll be doing book reviews for young girls and talking about practical ways to grow spiritually as a teenage girl. Her heart is to encourage young women to follow Jesus. As our other four children get older, they may write some too—we’ll have to wait and see."
“The site will serve to provide more personal information such as what I’m doing with my family and how the Holy Spirit is changing me by the grace of God to be more like Jesus.Through various posts, I’ll cover the theological and the practical, doctrine and life, what Christians believe and how Christians behave, and the text of Scripture and context of life. The big idea is that we need both a theology of something (e.g., marriage, parenting, sex, joy, suffering) and a reality of that thing.”
Speaking of books, when you click the “Books” tab at the top of the website, you are immediately brought to a page littered with “Books by Pastor Mark.” That’s great, but I’m more interested in the books that have influenced Mark Driscoll, so let’s take a look at the “Recommended” tab. Several books here are perfectly fine pieces of literature. Things become concerning, however, when we see names such as Donald Whitney appear.
“I am very alarmed about Donald Whitney bringing spiritual disciplines and implied human ability into Reformed theology. If the trend for syncretistic spiritual disciplines and spiritual formation takes over the Reformed versions of evangelical education there will be very few options for young people who want an education grounded in the solas of the Reformation. Scripture alone and grace alone are compromised—if not rejected outright—when spiritual disciplines are adopted.”
Also on the Recommended Reading page of MarkDriscoll.tv is Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas. Promotion of this book ought to concern us because, as this article points out, Gary Thomas is an advocate of the unbiblical practice of mantra meditation.
“With Campaigns, we'll make available to any church—free of charge—access to the materials, notes, and research for future Mars Hill sermon series. Think of it as a free marketing and research staff for your church and as if I was a volunteer for your ministry.
What you get
- Sermon Research Brief: Access to hundreds of pages of top-level research from Docent Research Group
- Preaching Strategies: My personal preaching suggestions and research to help you prepare your own sermons
- Full Marketing and Branding: Branding, design, and marketing plans that you can edit for your local church
- DVD Sermon Downloads: Free use of my sermons for the series via DVD download if you want a week off
- Counseling Guide: Helpful strategies and research specific to the sermon content to help your pastors and volunteers help hurting people
- Worship Guide: Suggestions and tips on how to prepare every aspect of your worship service to compliment—not compete—with the sermons
In addition to these free resources, extra resources will be available for purchase from time to time:
- Book: A major trade book published in advance for the larger campaigns, launching every January
- Small Group Curriculum: A comprehensive DVD and written curriculum for your small groups”
According to this page, the idea for offering these “campaigns” came upon the realization that:
“At Mars Hill, our desire is to see people come, meet Jesus, and grow as disciples. In the past, we didn’t do this as well as we should. We had growth numerically, but not spiritually. Through much prayer and planning, we realized that we were not doing a good job discipling our people in every aspect of life. We were relying too much on good music and sermons from the pulpit. The message wasn’t translating.”It’s laudable that they recognized a deficiency and are seeking to correct it. However, I’m not sure that the end result of campaigns as “more than a sermon series. Rather, it’s linking your entire church up to your pulpit and pushing one big idea through every aspect of your church” is necessarily the answer. Preach the Word. Teach your congregation how to study the Word for themselves. Posters and flyers and catchy small-group themes may bring cohesiveness to your church’s culture, but is it ultimately going to make your people more learned in God’s Word? Are you creating disciples of Mars Hill Church or disciples of Jesus Christ? Driscoll states that the proof that campaigns work is:
“Last year alone, we saw over a thousand people baptized and 14% of our growth was due to conversions. Additionally, we’re seeing many people grow as disciples, join as members, start serving the church, and join our Community Groups—over 80% of our church is involved one.”Okay, so “campaigns work.” Work how? What do they accomplish? Can the people in your church articulate the Gospel clearly? Do they speak it loudly, boldly and often? Or do they invite friends to church because the sermon series and accompanying campaign are so catchy and cool? I hope the proof is in the former.
As I said at the outset, I’m not trying to bash Mark Driscoll for having another website (a fifth website, to be exact). The existence of such a website, however, simply speaks to this man’s influence in the “evangelical” community. In yesterday’s post, Is “God” Still Talking to Mark Driscoll? I pointed out that Driscoll is a current member of The Gospel Coalition (in fact, Driscoll links to TGC from his site), a group of men whose supposed conservative approach to Scripture should not align with much of what Driscoll advocates. There is no room for extra-biblical revelation (especially of an X-rated nature) or the promotion of contemplative spirituality (which is nothing more than Eastern mysticism in a chintzy Christian costume) among a group that supposedly adheres to the Reformation cry of sola Scriptura. It would not be unfounded or over reactive of us to fear that the launch of this latest website will serve to propagate further some of the dangerous teachings that we have heard from Driscoll. Do we really need yet more resources from the man who thinks that the “gift of discernment” means that he has a television in his head playing out other people’s violent sins? But then, who am I? After all, I must confess, I am still waiting for that first voicemail from God.