Heretic InkblotRorschach inkblot test:

The theory behind the test, created by Hermann Rorschach, is that the test taker’s spontaneous or unrehearsed responses reveal deep secrets or significant information about the taker’s personality or innermost thoughts.

One application of this pseudo-science test is that the Rorschach test reveals the common biases of the subject taking the test. Today, one can witness this particular phenomena in the response to Rob Bell’s approximately 2 minutes of speaking time at the Seeds of Compassion event in Seattle, WA.

The Setup

The context of the event is that 15 representatives of different religions were invited to a panel discussion (which is different than being given a lecture with free reign of topics) on Sprituality & Youth, along with the Dali Lama and Desmond Tutu. Rob Bell, the teaching pastor at Mars Hill Bible Church in Grand Rapids, MI, was one of the invited panelists. During the 3-4 hour session, he was (according to the A Little Leaven) given two questions, for which he had approximately 2-3 minutes of mic-time.

How one responds to his answers is just as telling as Rorschach’s inkblot – how it is viewed is likely to be pre-determined by the disposition of the viewer toward Mr. Bell prior to his even answering the question.

To those who already had knives sharpened, ready to criticize whatever answer he might have, nothing short of the Roman Road, complete with flannelgraph would have sufficed to sate their hunger to prove Bell’s heresy.

To those, like myself, who give Bell a charitable read as a brother in Christ, nothing less than disavowal of Christianity or Christian principal was likely to sway.

With the context set, here are the clips:

Clip 1:

A question by a 12-year-old is directed to Bell: What can I do to not be so hard on myself when I make a mistake?

Here is Bell’s response:

So, an uncharitably predisposed listener would likely say something like:

If Bell were giving a Christian answer then he should have mentioned the forgiveness of sins won by Jesus Christ on the cross.

OR

To ignore an opportunity like this to share Jesus Christ, even at the risk of getting thrown out of the place, is a denial of Jesus Christ.

And they would prattle on about how Christians should have been outside boycotting instead of participating in a discussion on how to be compassionate. Such a reader would ignore the context of the event, expecting Bell to ignore the question and to proselytize instead. In absence of hijacking the question for his own agenda, Bell must – in the eyes of the uncharitable listener – be a failure as a Christian.

The charitable Christian would note that Bell’s answer is perfectly within Jesus’ teaching of the Kingdom of God (which is about the journey, leaving the destination up to God), and that of repentence. The charitable Christian would also note that this is the answer that Jesus gave the woman caught in adultery. They would point out that Bell answered the question, demonstrating that Christians can participate in discussion without making asses of themselves, while still holding true to the teachings of Christ.

Clip 2:

The question in this clip is contained within:

Again, the Rorschach split is on display.

The uncharitably-disposed listener is likely to harp:

pay close attention to how Bell allegorizes death and resurrection so that it can fit neatly and inoffensively into the generic one-world spirituality being promoted at this event.

OR (having no clue what “unequally yoked” means)

I am about to write a whole piece on Rob’s false teaching and where it is leading us. This just proves the dicernment to be right. He is just another false teacher and we shall no them by their fruits. In regards to if he shared Jesus later on in the event. It really wouldn’t matter. Based on all that he just said and who he yokes himself with, I am better off not following the Jesus he mentions. It is a different Jesus, not the one Paul and John and others preached about.

A charitably predisposed listener would likely point out that the above comments are simply demogoguery, and that Bell’s answer – within the format of the session – was to not repay evil for evil, but to suffer for doing good, which will bring a blessing.

Whereas the charitably-disposed listener would note that Bell was able to give a Biblically-based answer and to also insert the tenet difference between Christianity and the other religions represented on stage by inserting Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection into the context of the question and the answer – and do it in such a way as to fit the format of the discussion without overt proselytization.

In Conclusion

There is a time and a place for everything, and when you’re invited over for dinner with your neighbor to discuss Topic A, it’s not necessarily the time or place to discuss Topic B and stick your thumb in the eye of the host. Instead, it seems to follow the pattern of Paul and Jesus’ disciples to use the culture around you and the questions asked to demonstrate truth, rather than expecting the entire enchilada at each and every sitting.

Was it wise to accept the invitation in the first place? I suppose we could just display Christianity to be the arrogant jerks they’ve been portrayed to be, by simply standing outside this event and protesting all the while refusing to engage those inside on anyone’s terms but our own. Or, as Bell did (I haven’t seen Pagitt’s responses), we can participate as citizen’s of the Kingdom without apologizing for our faith or our Lord, all the while remaining civil occupants of the world (kosmos), which is only our temporary residence.

So, in reality, what happened today? In Christianity, no minds were changed, I am sure – the discrenmentalists will continue to howl whenever a camera or microphone records Bell doing anything but repenting at the altar of fundamentalism, his supporters will continue to support him so long as he remains true to Christ (whether or not he bows to fundamentalist “orthodoxy”), and most of the rest of Christianity will breathe a sigh of relief that he didn’t have a Pat Robertson moment… Meanwhile, perhaps some in the audience with no prior knowledge of Bell’s notariety will be led to ask more questions about Christ, and Bell’s example will be a good one.

HT: A Little Leaven*

*This site pretty much only allows comments in agreement with the author (or comments that can be easily debunked/mocked. Be aware of this before wasting your time writing anything, since truth is something that can’t be handled by the pharisees and their “little leaven” site…

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This entry was posted on Tuesday, April 15th, 2008 at 5:24 pm and is filed under Church and Society, Commentary, ODM Responses, Original Articles. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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189 Comments(+Add)

1   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 5:43 pm

Chris – you have self defined the only two camps as you see them which mirrors what some others do. The charitably disposed listener is one who sees it correctly, and the uncharitably disposed listener is out for blood. So you have set up a subjective gameboard which you suppose covers everyone.

Your premise contaminates any discussion because any perspectives must enter through one of the only two doors you provide.

2   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 5:51 pm

Actually, Rick, I’m just defining charity as done by Paul:

If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Charity says “did Bell speak in opposition to Jesus or his teaching?” Charity says “did he deny Jesus’ life, death, burial or resurrection?” Charity says “did Bell claim that any way other than Jesus was truth?”

If the answer is “no”, then the charitable listener rejoices that a follower of Jesus spoke truth in the market square without making a mockery of Jesus by being an ass.

I admitted that I was setting the doors, and that I had a bias. Please note that there were doors for those not already predisposed to agree/disagree. My point was though, that those predisposed to be asses were, and that those who were predisposed to be forgiving (if not too much so), would be, as well…

3   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 5:52 pm

To be more blunt:

Surprise, Bell didn’t give a Calvinist apologetic when asked a question that didn’t beg for one.

Personally, I’d hate to have been in the apostle Paul’s shoes when he spent 2+ years in the Hall of Philosophers in Ephesus with anti-Christian bloggers like Ingrid & Ken around.

Satan doesn’t need to the world to attack Christians when he’s got willing accomplices in the church to do his work for him.

4   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 6:10 pm

Using the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ as a rationalistic metaphor to personal well being, couched in some “endure suffering so you can be a better person” philosophical advice, is blasphemy.

That is from someone who before Christ desired Bell to say something that could be defended as Christocentric complete with even a slight reference to His name. Even some of these “clown” churches give some form of the gospel. And the “How can I be not so hard on myself when I make a mistake” question was a Juptiter sized softball that could have been addressed with a “Well, speaking as a Christian…”.

But on that softball Bell whiffed.

And if you are honest, if Bell had used the name of Jesus and connected Him to a message of redemption, you would have rejoiced and presented it as evidence of the valdidity of your perspectives on Rob Bell. And when you allude to the fact that he desired to remain inside the boundaries of the discussion topic, two things come to mind.

*He is exceptionally gifted in communication and had it well within his capability to “sneak” it in.

*The rulers beat Peter and told him not to preach and he disregarded their warnings.

5   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 6:43 pm

So I guess the admonition to “daily take up our crosses” was a blasphemous one?

A charitable observer, in short, deals only with what was said and done by someone, not what they “failed” to do, in the eyes of the observer.

6   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 6:53 pm

“A charitable observer, in short, deals only with what was said and done by someone, not what they “failed” to do, in the eyes of the observer.”

That was my first point with which you disagreed.

7   Keith    http://fivepts.blogspot.com
April 15th, 2008 at 7:27 pm

Chris L: re: your “disclaimer” of the Little Leaven website–are you saying that we shouldn’t have a problem with “Jesus Rocks,” “Promise Seeds Scripture Candy,” the “Cheezus” Cheeto, or Jesus was a Liberal boxers and thong panties?

8   amy    
April 15th, 2008 at 7:32 pm

The charitable Christian would note that Bell’s answer is perfectly within Jesus’ teaching of the Kingdom of God (which is about the journey, leaving the destination up to God), and that of repentence. The charitable Christian would also note that this is the answer that Jesus gave the woman caught in adultery. They would point out that Bell answered the question, demonstrating that Christians can participate in discussion without making asses of themselves, while still holding true to the teachings of Christ.

Jesus didn’t present himself on an equal footing with other “spiritual” leaders when he gave the woman instructions to “go and sin no more.” Nor did he in any way compromise with other belief systems so that the “journey” of the “Kingdom of God” could be confused with other “journeys” into Satanic realms.

How does the audience in this situation know what the “next right thing” is? The next right thing according to which of the leaders in the panel? Will they participate in rites of compassion with the Dalai Lama as “the next right thing?”

Has Rob Bell given the audience any indication that Buddhism is spiritually dangerous? Does he even know it?

9   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 7:36 pm

Has Rob Bell given the audience any indication that Buddhism is spiritually dangerous? Does he even know it?

Maybe he needs someone like you or Ken to explain it to him?

Or, perhaps he can just follow the example of Paul

The city clerk quieted the crowd and said: “Men of Ephesus, doesn’t all the world know that the city of Ephesus is the guardian of the temple of the great Artemis and of her image, which fell from heaven? Therefore, since these facts are undeniable, you ought to be quiet and not do anything rash. You have brought these men here, though they have neither robbed temples nor blasphemed our goddess.

Silly, stupid Paul – didn’t he know that he shouldn’t present himself on equal footing with other “spiritual” leaders in the Hall of Philosophers, or that he should warn people about the spiritual danger of Artemis.

Shame on Paul!

10   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 7:37 pm

Keith,

Even a blind squirrel finds a nut on occasion, but that doesn’t make blindness a key to the survival of the squirrel species.

11   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 15th, 2008 at 7:39 pm

But on that softball Bell whiffed.

This is treating everything like politics. I reject any claim that says Christians always have to have the right answers or think we have all the right answers. Anyway, Bell was at this inter-spiritual event as a Christian. Did anyone there not know he was a Christian? I doubt it.

I actually thought both his answers were pretty good.

12   Keith    http://fivepts.blogspot.com
April 15th, 2008 at 7:43 pm

Chris L: Just curious, since the tone of your disclaimer seemed to imply that the site was way off base.

13   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 7:43 pm

I was saved watching Billy Graham on television, but I publicly denounce his universalist staements and his acceptance of Roman Catholicism. We should never be loyal to any man, and be ready to correct him when he needs it. Faithful are the wounds of a friend.

Dangerous in his own eyes is the man to whom no one dares to disagree and provide loving correction.

Some would claim MacArthur never needs correction while others would say the same about Bell. We should not even be loyal to ourselves. Unless we believe in purechance, Bell was provided with a rare platform upon which he might have been a little more distinctive. Marcus Borg could have said what he did, and has.

14   Evan Hurst    http://breaktheterror.wordpress.com
April 15th, 2008 at 7:46 pm

Using the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ as a rationalistic metaphor to personal well being, couched in some “endure suffering so you can be a better person” philosophical advice, is blasphemy.

it seems to me that Bell’s answer actually, in simple terms, described everything Jesus taught about how we should treat others, and he even went as far as to connect those teachings with their larger representation in the crucifixion and resurrection.

that’s called reading between the lines and finding the poetry in scripture.

15   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 7:54 pm

Evan – does that mean to endure the sufferings as a gay man without, as Bell proposed, any giving back so as to become a better person? Do you espouse that poetry?

The death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ is the gospel and faith in His work is the only way to heaven. No need to read between any lines.

16   Pastordude    http://www.thedowngrade2007.blogspot.com
April 15th, 2008 at 8:15 pm

The only uncharitable thing I will say is on the second video, Rob Bell called someone (I spose the Dalai LLama) ‘His Holiness’. Completely inappropriate, for only One is holy, and only He (Jesus) should be accorded that honor.

I once did a loop for the Dalai Llama- Big hitter the Llama. He didn’t give me a tip, but he said that when I die I will achieve total conciousness….so I have that going for me

17   amy    
April 15th, 2008 at 8:35 pm

Silly, stupid Paul – didn’t he know that he shouldn’t present himself on equal footing with other “spiritual” leaders in the Hall of Philosophers, or that he should warn people about the spiritual danger of Artemis.

didn’t he know that he shouldn’t present himself on equal footing with other “spiritual” leaders in the Hall of Philosophers

Did he present himself on equal footing? I see nothing that indicates that Paul ever did that. Actually he seemed to always present himself as the worst of sinners; but he was clear on the preeminence of the gospel. People turned from what they were following to the Way.

The Hall of Philosophers was a place of debate wasn’t it? Is there debate going on at this conference? I don’t see it.

But if Bell follows in Paul’s footsteps we can expect a big fire in Seattle soon, from all the books being burnt. Followed by a great uproar of the New Age and Buddhist folks upset that he is harming their sales.

More likely we’ll see a gentle purr of “aren’t we all so spiritual and compassionate? Let’s accept one another and work together.

I wonder what warm and fuzzy words Paul said at the lecture hall that caused people to burn their books of sorcery.

or that he should warn people about the spiritual danger of Artemis

The silversmith claimed that Paul said that man-made gods weren’t gods. (Acts 19:26.) Was he lying? If not, then Paul had clearly taken a stand about who the one true God was and the “man-made” gods that he spoke against would have included Artemis.

though they have neither robbed temples nor blasphemed our goddess

.The city clerk said that Paul had not blasphemed “our goddess.” So what did he mean by this? Did “not blaspheming” mean that Paul hadn’t warned about “man-made gods?”

I thought at first that the short-haired lady in the video was Brian Mclaren. Not just the way she looks but her mannerisms made me think of him. Who is she?

18   amy    
April 15th, 2008 at 8:39 pm

How does the “endure suffering” work in real life?

Do I just watch genocide and think it’s wrong when someone tries to stop it?

Does the “endure suffering” motto extend to Christians being persecuted by Buddhists? (In Burma, for example.)

How does that motto apply to this site? Shouldn’t you just “take it” (the scourging of the ODM’s) instead of handing it back?

19   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 8:39 pm

Well Paul must have deviated from his gentle policy, he eventually lost his head over his words. And he was run out of some towns in Acts and arrested if you look not so closely.

I cannot believe you would compare what Paul did with what Bell did. A transparent disconnect.

20   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 8:43 pm

Thanks for providing many ‘cases in point’…

Grace and peace to you…

21   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 8:55 pm

Just for the record I saw John MacArthur in a “Jesus is a liberal” thong… in the ink blot I mean… not in person.

iggy

22   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 9:02 pm

I cannot believe you would compare what Paul did with what Bell did.

Let’s see:

1) Debate does not require disagreement – but rather a search for truth. If Paul (as indicated in Acts) was truly in the Hall of Philosophers in Ephesus, his comments could not be directed against Artemis or Caesar (the two key deities). Rather, any such offenses would have to be inferred from the full import (or logical extension) of his debate.

2) In order to debate with non-Christian/non-Jews, the use of the propositional truth of scripture would be impossible. Thus, Paul’s reliance on the evidence of Creation in Romans and elsewhere. Such debate would require definition of both areas of agreement and disagreement, not a full ’smackdown’ of opposing philosophies

3) Paul was on equal footing with other philosophers – Greco-Roman debate required that being ‘right’ was not based upon positional authority. The price of admittance was acceptance of ‘equality’…

4) The silversmith’s testimony conflicted with that of the mayor, and a number of commentators suggest that it was the lagging sales, not anti-Aremesian teaching that drove him. The ‘our gods are not gods’ is the logical extension of Christian teaching, even if it’s never explicitly stated.

5) Paul’s execution was based on his imprisonment, which was a result of his own appeal to Caesar (if you believe the account in Acts…) – not the Ephesian revolt against Christianity. Even in Athens, Paul didn’t attack the gods of the city, instead choosing the UNKNOWN GOD as his foil for philosophical debate.

6) Let’s see – a 5-day conference, at which Bell was in attendance 2 days. We’ve seen 2 minutes of that time from a formal setting. Perhaps y’all never attend conferences, but most of the valuable interaction in conferences occurs in personal interaction outside of general sessions (which, generally, are often the least useful sessions).

Unless there was a FundieCam following him around (which I doubt, since some fundies recorded that the other fundies were shouting “Turn or Burn” ineffectively outside the venue) , we simply don’t know what interactions Bell had outside of the two YouTube minutes. If one believes the anecdotes he shares during his sermons, personal interactions aren’t ‘love-fests’ without consequence.

Uncharitable? Y’all are surprising in the least…

23   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 9:09 pm

I am not a proponent of god bashing. That was never my point. Jesus, one little tiny mention, that is all I wanted to hear.

But I understand the loyalty factor, it runs in many different directions. If you were ever going to gently suggest a Bell mistake, this might have been a good spot.

24   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 9:17 pm

Would have I given the same answer in the same situation? Probably not exactly, but I don’t know the full context – I wasn’t there.

Would have I given the Virgin Birth example in Velvet Elvis? Despite understanding (and agreeing with) the point made, I would have chosen literal 6-day creation, as it would demonstrate the point more clearly w/o as much of an opening to howl at “heresy” (where none existed).

Would have I ________?

I don’t know. However, had the person on stage been Johnnie Mac, and had he given the same answers, I would not be criticizing him for it (though I might criticize some of his fawning sycophants for their typical inconsistency).

25   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 10:21 pm

Hey Jon – how about tracking down [REDACTED] there at Liberty U, and let him know that wikipedia isn’t an advertising platform for his Bed & Breakfast, the Steel Magnolia House…

26   Jonathan    
April 15th, 2008 at 9:49 pm

It is pitifull and unchristian to reference what Bell said as parallel to Paul’s teachings. If you espouse that parallel then you would say that the Bible is incomplete. We should include other Gospels such as Thomas, Gospel of Mary Magdelene, and the other “Gospels” that lack kerygma.

What Bell does is wrap Gnosticism with pretty paper and a nice bow of vapor and presents it to those who know not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. Paul would have listened to Bell and yelled from the hill tops…anathema!

He (Bell) has and continues to equate the risen Christ with religions that are from satan himself. To look upon what Bell says and justify his words as truth is to look away from the Lord and turn your eyes upon Sodom…I see salt pillars everywhere!

27   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 15th, 2008 at 9:53 pm

What Bell does is wrap Gnosticism with pretty paper and a nice bow of vapor and presents it to those who know not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Gnosticism – You keep on using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

28   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 10:04 pm

Maybe Jonathan’s the one holding the missing copy of the Lamb’s Book of Life – seems like he’s claiming special knowledge… but that would be, well… gnostic…

Perhaps it is a mirror he was looking at, rather than one of the linked clips…

29   Jonathan    
April 15th, 2008 at 10:08 pm

D.L. Bock is a great teacher….I wonder what level of the pleroma Bell is trying to achieve.

Phil are you a swords man…lol?

I see Gnosticism all over Bell and his teachings. Let’s get some special spiritual knowledge from the wise all knowing….

30   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 10:13 pm

Jon,

You must never listen to the Mars Hill Bible Church podcasts.

Forgive my french, but you’re speaking out of your nether-regions now… Fundamentalism (and particularly the hyper-Calvinist brand) is the modern reemergence of gnosticism. Bell doesn’t claim any special knowledge… but you wouldn’t know that, as I doubt you’ve ever really paid attention past what has been spoon fed in the lies of the ODM’s…

31   Jonathan    
April 15th, 2008 at 10:13 pm

Somebody is upset…lol

Well, we know Bell’s book of Life would contain all that were on that panel…Having Jesus or not…please Chris, accept it and don’t give it back…LOL

32   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 10:15 pm

Please, Jon

How about providing in-context quotes rather than just slandering folks from the safety of your armchair?

33   Jonathan    
April 15th, 2008 at 10:16 pm

LOL

34   Neil    
April 15th, 2008 at 10:32 pm

To ignore an opportunity like this to share Jesus Christ, even at the risk of getting thrown out of the place, is a denial of Jesus Christ.

This is sad on soooo many levels.

Neil

35   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 15th, 2008 at 11:21 pm

Hmmm… I also see a pack of ODM’s attacking sheep!

iggy

36   TimB    http://castironskillet-timb.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 12:05 am

My perspective might be a little screwed up. In the second clip I didn’t see Rob Bell talking at all. I saw a music video with guys in turbans singing a sweet pop-song in a language I didn’t understand.

It might be heresy but I can’t tell. I’m not even sure about the language.

And then again, I might be crazy.

37   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 12:19 am

I fixed it – I’d messed up the links earlier…

38   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 12:20 am

I also see a pack of ODM’s attacking sheep!

I also thought I heard one of them mutter something about “two legs good… four legs bad…” strange

39   Evan Hurst    http://breaktheterror.wordpress.com
April 16th, 2008 at 1:02 am

How does the “endure suffering” work in real life?

Do I just watch genocide and think it’s wrong when someone tries to stop it?

Does the “endure suffering” motto extend to Christians being persecuted by Buddhists? (In Burma, for example.)

that’s not your suffering…

it seems like Bell was talking about when people attack you on a personal level…how not to use spirituality as a weapon, which is what a large portion of Christians, Muslims, etc…do…not Buddhists…it’s really an Abrahamic phenomenon.

wait, scratch that. they don’t use spirituality as a weapon. they use religion as a weapon.

40   Chris    http://agendalesslove.wordpress.com
April 16th, 2008 at 4:10 am

How does the “endure suffering” work in real life?

Do I just watch genocide and think it’s wrong when someone tries to stop it?

Does the “endure suffering” motto extend to Christians being persecuted by Buddhists? (In Burma, for example.)

How does that motto apply to this site? Shouldn’t you just “take it” (the scourging of the ODM’s) instead of handing it back?

Paul seems to have a pretty good take on this:

We put no stumbling block in anyone’s path, so that our ministry will not be discredited. Rather, as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: in great endurance; in troubles, hardships and distresses; in beatings, imprisonments and riots; in hard work, sleepless nights and hunger; in purity, understanding, patience and kindness; in the Holy Spirit and in sincere love; in truthful speech and in the power of God; with weapons of righteousness in the right hand and in the left; through glory and dishonor, bad report and good report; genuine, yet regarded as impostors; known, yet regarded as unknown; dying, and yet we live on; beaten, and yet not killed; sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.

We have spoken freely to you, Corinthians, and opened wide our hearts to you. We are not withholding our affection from you, but you are withholding yours from us. As a fair exchange—I speak as to my children—open wide your hearts also.

I suppose he could have ended at 1 Corinthians Chapter 1 and just shouted “You go to church with a man who sleeps with his step mom” “HERETICS!!!!!” “TURN OR BURN!!!!!”

*waits for the first person to say “But in the next verses…*

*also waits for the first person to say “But Paul had a relationship with them” or “he did say ‘turn or burn’*

41   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 6:27 am

Chris – you continue to construct inaccurate perspectives by pulling out a verse here and there, the very thing you say you are against. Paul was severely persecuted by Jew and Gentile alike, primarily for the person of Christ in his preaching. And even when placed in front of magistrates, where it would have been good to downplay Jesus, Paul witnesses until they call him “mad”. No one can suggest Paul left out the person of Christ in anything he did.

We have left any Christocentric view of Christianity today, and our concentration on building bridges, however well intentioned, have left out the chief cornerstone. I have seen Billy Graham, no hero of the orthodox crowd, actually give the gospel in panel discussions with leaders of different religions. That is my point, even Paggit mentioned Jesus in his panel although as an adjective (Jesus tradition).

I do not rejoice in this, in fact, it grieves my heart because I feel many have succombed to the deceiver who presents himself as a humanitarian angel of light.

The self righteousness, the anger, the using the Bible to bash, the unloving approach, and all the rest of the unfortunate actions of some notwithstanding, the gospel of Jesus Christ will always be about His atoning work and as the only way to eternal life. We cannot build a religion around means, we must go into all the world and preach Christ regardless of how unsophisticated and divisive it seems to others. Our religion is not only Christ, our entire lives are Jesus and it is that name and that person who will offend many because He is a stumbling block.

And to speak His name will forever be an undeserving privilege to each believing follower of His. Sports figures, Hollywood actors, politicians, and other people speak his name and give Him thanks in non-religious circumstances, can preachers do no less?

42   ianmcn    
April 16th, 2008 at 6:51 am

The problem was not with what he said, it was the context in which he said it. From the moment this event was announced it sounded like some kind of ecumenical love in, but as this site pointed out, it was a golden opportunity for Bell to be an influencer of people most Christian’s would never have a chance.

However, from those clips (particularly the first) what did he actually add from a Christian perspective? OK, a veiled reference to resurrection, but it was in such general terms it was meaningless. He could have easily given a response from a Christian perspective without making an ass of himself. I’m not saying we burn him at the stake or denounce him as a heretic, but at least we can acknowledge this was a missed opportunity?

43   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 7:02 am

“making an ass of himself.”

There are times where we are called exactly to that.

44   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 7:17 am

“making an ass of himself.”

There are times where we are called exactly to that.

Too bad we don’t have a Spirit from God to tell us when that might be, and we have to depend on a legion of blog-critics to tell us when we’ve succeeded or failed, and when we’ve been a correct ‘ass’ and an incorrect one…

Missed opportunity? Possibly. Possibly not.

A time to thump our chests and prove we’re holy and righteous through critical armchair quarterbacking? Oh yeah – most definitely.

Joe was right – apparently we believe that the Holy Spirit is dead and unable to function in today’s world…

45   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 7:20 am

ianmcn,

OK let’s say it was a “missed opportunity” from the two small clips.

But, lets say, one person looks more into Bell and finds Jesus… is that still a lost opportunity?

Or say that Bell had a chance to talk to one of influence backstage, and they are touched, not by Bell, by by the Holy Spirit…

You see in your comments that is what I see missing. It is the acknowledgment that God is active and living and moving and doing things and that it is God that saves us. God does not need Bell, or you or me… God can save by the Power of His own Hand and saves us by His Name.

So I just wonder at the judgment cast upon Bell, especially by Calvinists or others that claim to believe as I just stated, but if it is of one they seem to not like, they are quick to point out “lost opportunity” as if they themselves can see all things and move all things by the power of their own might and knowledge.

Be blessed,
iggy

46   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 7:27 am

One of the few rational comments from the OP site:

While I agree, Rob Bell may have missed some opportunities and probably could have said some things more perfectly, I appreciate the fact that he was trying to say things in a way that non-Christians could hear. Too often we Christians are guilty of being so strident and Bible-quoting in our beliefs that non-Christians in these times DO tune us out and miss the very message we are trying to get across. I think an effort to speak the truth in love nowadays might include using verbage that is more inclusive. I am NOT recommending changing the gospel itself. I am NOT suggesting that the Bible is no longer relevant or is not inerrant and God-breathed. I am just suggesting that we Christians might need to consider having more of a missionary mindset towards our fellow Americans (who have been sold a bill of goods by the liberal media), and thus, seek to keep cultural doors open with our words. I wish we Christians would put more energy into how to make bridges to the lost rather than spend so much time fault finding with our brothers and sisters.

I have to say I agree with her. Was this a ‘missed opportunity’? Possibly.

If so, it’s too bad the only grace we receive for ‘missed opportunities’ comes after we die – and only in some other place, far away.

Is it possible that, rather than use all of the Christianese buzzwords, he gave answers that conveyed Biblical truth in the common tongue? Certainly.

Is it possible that this was not the proper time to ‘be an ass’, and that Bell’s presence there and his answers were in line with the leading of the Holy Spirit? Certainly.

How do we know which of these is true?

Each one should test his own actions. Then he can take pride in himself, without comparing himself to somebody else, for each one should carry his own load.

Sadly, for some, such admonition is superfluous, and the desire for blood overcomes.

The truth is – this is not, and was not our burden to bear, and Brother Bell may not have done things the way we would have done them, but I didn’t see any of us in a position to do anything differently…

47   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 7:27 am

I’m not saying we burn him at the stake or denounce him as a heretic, but at least we can acknowledge this was a missed opportunity?

How is it for us to decide what is a missed opportunity for others? I am only called to be accountable for my opportunities. What Bell does is up to him. His sphere of influence is completely different than mine. I’ve never been asked to share a stage with the Dali Lama, and I probably won’t ever. I don’t know what it would even be like to speak in front of such a crowd.

This is no different than criticizing a quarterback on a Monday morning. The fact is that the vast majority of people are in no position to make such judgement calls.

This whole thing is another example of making an argument from silence. If we can’t criticize him for what he did say, we can criticize him for what he didn’t say. The main thing is, we just want him to tickle our little ears.

48   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 7:50 am

Phill and Chris L.

I find it interesting that people like Rob Bell are chosen by God and not John MacArthur. (Remember nothing happens unless God allows it so God was predestined and preordained by God Himself to be there) Isn’t it interesting how some that hold to that theology conveniently deny it when they want to?

iggy

49   shammah ben agee    http://endtheapostasy.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 8:32 am

If this post had been posted on an odm blog there would have been shouts of strawman and arrogance. However since it is written by the defenders of post modern pinheadism
it is deconstruction/reconstruction an insightful. Meet the new bosss, same as the old.
BTW I thought Bell and Pagitt were going to win every non christian leader and attendee to Jesus. Hard to do with only a three minute slot. This conference was planned with a specific agenda in mind and Jesus is not it.
Also keep your tired redefining of gnosticism and fundamentalists in the dark recesses of your, ahem, minds
You dont know have a clue.

50   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 8:34 am

“Each one should test his own actions. Then he can take pride in himself, without comparing himself to somebody else, for each one should carry his own load.”

Does that apply to the anti-dsicernment ministries that function as an antithesis to your interpretive suggestion about that verse. I mean I could quote one verse that says shows that Paul rebuked Peter to his face and then the Spirit included that in the canan. Why didn’t Paul just mind his own business?

The verse pulling is just that and is practiced by many. The problem is that many people suggest that Bell misses opportunities on a regular basis including on Sunday and on his tours. But that makes anyone with that perspective as not presdisposed to a charitable view, which is interpreted that it is wrong because it is not charitable.

Charity should always be our goal, however a hateful man can speak the truth and a loving man can speak lies.

51   Chris    http://agendalesslove.wordpress.com
April 16th, 2008 at 8:42 am

Chris – you continue to construct inaccurate perspectives by pulling out a verse here and there, the very thing you say you are against. Paul was severely persecuted by Jew and Gentile alike, primarily for the person of Christ in his preaching.

Rick sorry that I didn’t adequately communicate my perspective.

My point was that Paul appears to be discussing persecution in 2 Cor. 6. This was in response to Amy’s query about persecution.

It (my point) had little to do with Paul speaking boldly of Christ.

And for the record; I’ve never held fault with the ODM’s for proof-texting scripture. But I have demonstrated that it is pretty easy to build a case for either side by picking and choosing what scriptures you use.

BTW my time stamp on that comment was 4:10 a.m. I’m not responsible for anything I say before 9 a.m. LOL

52   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 8:47 am

“But I have demonstrated that it is pretty easy to build a case for either side by picking and choosing what scriptures you use.”

How true for all of us.

53   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 8:59 am

ben,

If this post had been posted on an odm blog there would have been shouts of strawman and arrogance. However since it is written by the defenders of post modern pinheadism
it is deconstruction/reconstruction an insightful. Meet the new bosss, same as the old.

So as you contextualize here, you admit you are no better than any of us? I mean are you not of the “old boss”?

So you believe staying stagnant is better than doing something?

LOL!

I think it is obvious by your Christ like encouragement that you seem to miss some important things of Jesus teachings.

Of course you seem to gnosis all that went on, and that God did not do something big there? But then that makes you all knowing… and of course you are?

LOL!
iggy

54   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 9:08 am

Iggy – I am never questioning God’s ability to use almost anything todraw men unto Christ. He used Godspell in my life. But the end never justifies the means which is what I am discussing. Jesus should be presented when given an opportunity.

Bell was listed as a possible successor to Billy Graham, but I have seen Graham share the gospel in the midst of a conference and setting that didn’t lend itself to that communication. In season and out, our calling is to make the most of our opportunities.

55   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 9:15 am

“But I have demonstrated that it is pretty easy to build a case for either side by picking and choosing what scriptures you use.”

It is not the scripture we use, but in how and what we put into them, instead of letting them put into us what they mean.

Meaning, I can pretty much go through the bible and justify anything

It is like quantum physics when they realized that the outcome of their observations was what they had expected… meaning that if they expected to see light as a particle they saw that it was… if light was expected to be a wave it was also so observed as a wave.

Yet, I see that the bible does not define itself as some claim, but that God defines the bible. At one time a meaning can be personal and another time more toward community… it can be out of context and still have power yet within context teach us something.

What I mean is that God is the one the gives the light of understanding. Understanding is more than knowledge or knowing the bible… it is grasping the big and small of things that are beyond our own power to understand.

Do not confuse this with gnosticism, it is called revelation. Like when Jesus stated to Peter that the Father revealed to him who Jesus was. It is not a “just know truth” thing as Ken Silva expresses it as that is gnosticism… It is the realization that Truth is not of me and never was, and that God revealed it to me… not “just knowing” anything. In fact that was sort of Peter’s issue as he did not seem to realize the Father gave him Revelation as he went on to tell Jesus not to do the Father’s plan.

People like shammah ben agee seem to gloat over others as if they gained all their knowledge and righteousness and all else by some higher grace than others… they mix law and grace and condemn and judge others instead of uplifting them. I would encourage him to at least consider that he comes across this way to others and that he might reconsider his words and deeds match his profession of “saved by grace through faith”

be blessed,
iggy

56   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 9:16 am

The verse pulling is just that and is practiced by many. The problem is that many people suggest that Bell misses opportunities on a regular basis including on Sunday and on his tours. But that makes anyone with that perspective as not presdisposed to a charitable view, which is interpreted that it is wrong because it is not charitable.

I just don’t understand why any of us should care, really. None of us have any relationship with Bell, so it’s not like we’ve earned the right to speak to him as friend. And let’s face it, the people who are calling him out, aren’t doing it out of concern for him. They just want to prove themselves correct.

There are a lot of Christian teachers I don’t care for, but I don’t spend my time “researching” them. I don’t obsess about every move they make. I really couldn’t care less what they do. I don’t understand the pathology of critics when it comes to Bell.

I have just concluded from my conversations with people that a lot of it comes down to jealousy. I’ve talked to pastors who really hate him, and from what I can tell it’s just because he is reaching people they can’t, and they feel some sort of personal rejection because of it. They are angry that they’re worldview is not accepted by certain groups of people, and they are lashing out. It’s sad, really.

57   Dan Goldfinch    http://struggle4laodicea.wordpress.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 9:19 am

As a concerned discernmentalist, I think we should be worried. At the rate we are going, there’s only going to be 4 or 5 of us in eternity: Me, Iggy, Dr Spurgeon, Pastor Silva, the author of Slice, and maybe, just maybe, Chris R and Jim B. We are doing what we can at ODM ministries to get the number up to 144,000, but the work is hard. The rest of you have much to be worried about, very much indeed.

struggle4laodicea

58   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 9:20 am

Rick,

most of my comments are nto directed to you. I think you grasp what is going on… yet I see that we must understand Billy Graham preached in an age when Christianity was more accepted as the norm. Today it is held more is suspect that respect.

I also see that Billy Graham had many opportunities and I am sure if asked he would say that he missed most of them.

Rob is young and to be given such an honor, it takes grace and tact, it also takes time and more opportunities. In fact i see this as just a crack in the door of more to come. So to me I think we all need sit back and rest in the fruit of patience and wait and see what God will do in all of this.

Even then we might nto see the fruit as it may not come to fruition for many years.

iggy

59   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 9:28 am

Phil – I do not see your point. Why do you care about the ODMs with whom you have no relationship then? Is it because you feel they are doing spiritual harm? That is what many feel about Bell, and he is no obscure pastor from the hills of Montana.

60   nathan    http://www.nathanneighbour.com
April 16th, 2008 at 9:32 am

Chris,

Great article. I let the comments role for a while before I chimed in ( and isn’t it good to see that Amy is back :) ). A few thoughts

1. Nothing that Bell said was untruthful. It may not have been “jesus” this and “sanctified” that… but it was right. Why is it that as beleivers we cannot recognize truth unless it has a scripture address tied to it, or some overly churchy word in the verbal proclaimation of it.

2. Most of the people who write these hate blogs will NEVER interact with a buddhist, athiest, or hindu on a persoanl level… oh, they’ll give you a story about how they once talked to a Catholic at Starbucks. But I mean they will never have a new-ager over for dinner to meet their kids. So, they have NO IDEA how to talk about Jesus with them. Their idea: go for the jugular, and allor the holy spirit to stop up the wounds.

61   Eric Van Dyken    
April 16th, 2008 at 9:35 am

I’ve yet to see anyone defend Rob Bell referring to the Dali Lama as “his holiness”. I find it hard to see this as anything but pure blasphemy. Most of the other is worth discussion at some level, but this seems to me to be the most troubling. God says in the Bible that He is a “jealous” God. That does not mean jealous in our feable, petty way of understanidng childish jealousy. Rather it is a righteous indignation at ascribing worship, glory or titles to any other than the One to whom all worship, glory, and Holiness belong. I would hope that Rob would see the error of his ways in this regard and likewise repent.

Is the Dali Lama holy? Does he embody holiness? Is holiness an absolute attribute that we can attribute to the Lama? Is the Lama in fact a god? Actually he is, to many people, and Rob Bells addressing him as “his holiness” not only ascribes a title only due God to a mere lost human, it also serves to add credence to those who view the Lama as a god.

I find it very hard to stomach, and I can’t imagine it being defended. To God belongs all glory, honor, and praise! God alone is absolutely Holy and worthy to be called His Holiness!

62   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 9:38 am

Rick,
Well I actually have begun caring less and less what the ODMs say. I realize that they are fighting a losing battle, and I think things are going to change whether they want it to or not. I think the Titanic of American evangelicalism is on its way down, and how we arrange the deck chairs from now on is pretty inconsequential.

I guess I do feel somewhat defensive when people trash men like Bell, because I feel I am someone who has been positively influenced by him and others. I have seen God use his writings to keep people from completely walking away from God. I personally know at least half a dozen people who I could say this about, so yeah, I’m a bit defensive.

63   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 9:39 am

I find it very hard to stomach, and I can’t imagine it being defended. To God belongs all glory, honor, and praise! God alone is absolutely Holy and worthy to be called His Holiness!

I don’t know. It’s just a title. Would you address a judge as “your honor” if you were in a courtroom? Most likely you would, and there’s not much difference in the title. It’s just straining over a gnat.

64   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 9:47 am

FYI – the panel moderator announced at the beginning that the answers given by the panelists should by ‘non-sectarian’, and that the topic of the panel was ‘compassion’, that they were to “go to the essence” of each question (i.e. – keep it brief and directly on-topic).

With that constraint (and who knows whether it was communicated up-front), most of the “I wish he would have said…” answers would have been the equivalent of a thumb-in-the-eye during formal tea. Actually, bringing in resurrection was likely near the boundary of the given constraint.

Should have he been there in the first place? A fair question.

Another fair question might be:

What would it have looked like to have a worldwide conference on the topic of ‘compassion’, with a panel representing the major religions of the world except for Christianity – since no Christian would come w/o an open license to proselytize? My guess is that it would look like most societal debates that have nothing to do with sex or abortion, in which Christians have become irrelevant…

Interestingly, I would also note that – when given a minute at the beginning to introduce himself (in terms of his earliest recollection of human compassion), about the 50-minute mark in the video here, Bell related a story about forgiveness and compassion that I found much more compelling that the rest of the panel’s examples, representing Christ-like forgiveness and love… Of course, this didn’t fit the ODM script, so it’s not included at the ODM discussion…

If Ken, Ingrid and others were just out there spouting fundamentalist paranoid ramblings, as they’re apt to do, I doubt this site would exist. Rather, it is their senseless, relentless, generally baseless attacking of brothers in Christ – members of our body, the bride of Christ – and “warning” other people about them through gossip, lies and innuendo, which leads us to act.

Frankly, I could care less what sickness Ken spreads to his church of five in the backwaters of New Hampshire. What I do care about, though, is when he takes it upon himself to debauch the bride of Christ by deciding who’s in and who’s out and attempting to trash the reputations of folks he’s just jealous of…

65   Eric Van Dyken    
April 16th, 2008 at 9:51 am

Nathan,

To your comments in order:

1. Nothing that Satan said when tempting Jesus was untrue, either. Applying the “well, it’s true” test doesn’t prove really anything. The contention amongst those who have expressed concern isn’t that what he said is untrue per se, but that it fell far short of anything approaching gospel, and it was not at all distinctive. A Christian pastor and leader has a specail call to proclaim a distinctive message, not a message that could be delivered by any athiest or self help expert.

2. As to Chris L’s point about charitability, your language here is absolutely uncharitable and downright unchristian. To ascribe hate to a whole group of others is just plain wrong. Please don’t respond with “well, they do it too”. You do not know anything about these people personally, and you have no place to say that they are hate filled. You choose to read into their concerns as hate for others. In fact their actual words speak otherwise. Do they reveal disgust at times? Absolutely, and rightly so. And to say that they will never interact with heathens on a personal level is ludicrous. You have no clue as to the personal lives of these people, and to make such statements is the pinnacle of uncharitability and demonstrates a lack of Christian love. I hope you can see the error of your comments and consider whether such comments are appropriate in any way.

66   Dan Goldfinch    http://struggle4laodicea.wordpress.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 9:53 am

Friends,

I wonder who is holier: The Holy Father who is visiting America this week. Or ‘His Holiness’ the Dali Lama (or is it the Dali El Paca?). I wonder who would win a boxing match between the two?

struggling to keep up with all the love

67   Pastordude    http://www.thedowngrade2007.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 9:57 am

I agree with Eric!

And Nathan, I have witnessed outside of Starbucks specifically to Hindus, Muslims, Buddhists, and others because there is a large number of them on our local college campus. They are actually very willing to discuss different faiths!

We also invited a guest lecturer to our campus who was raised Hindu and became a Christian to speak about his testimony while comparing faiths. He made a very clear defense of Christianity. Why couldn’t Bell do that?

Phil,
People love Bell’s God because He does not judge, and does not have wrath, and he has provided an entrance to the kingdom for everyone who does not reject it! They are enamored with his ear tickling speech. If we preach a Biblical Gospel, we are not promised this kind of acceptance. We are promised persecution, anger, and rejection by the masses who are unregenerate. Unfortunately, this includes many so called christians.

68   Eric Van Dyken    
April 16th, 2008 at 9:57 am

Phil,

Are you serious in saying “it’s just a title”? Is “I AM”just a title? Is “God” just a title? Is “Jesus Christ” just a title? What if I proclaimed myself the “Son of God”? Would you not rightly refuse to call me the “Son of God”, even if I say “it’s just a title”?

I believe if you think further on that, you will recognize that words and titles have meanings, and that ascribing titles only due to God to men is sinful and blasphemous.

Is it really that hard to recognize that Rob Bell made a grevious error in this regard?

69   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 9:58 am

Eric,

I would note that the ‘hate’ in the ODM blogs is demonstrated in what is said (not in what is “not said”), which is part of charitability. When I first read Ken Silva’s work, I attempted to use a charitable eye, but it became impossible to do so when the hatred was manifest in what was actually written.

Being a charitable reader is about what you, as the reader, fill in as the context ‘between the lines’ (i.e. what is not said, but what implications are inferred by the reader but not necessarily the author).

Nathan’s comments were neither ‘uncharitable’, nor ‘unchristian’ – For example, just reading Ingrid’s stories on how she treats the lowly scum behind the check-out line at the local grocery sheds far more light on her character than her screeching on churches that meet in movie theaters… I thought his response was rather well-staid.

70   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 9:59 am

I wonder who is holier: The Holy Father who is visiting America this week. Or ‘His Holiness’ the Dali Lama (or is it the Dali El Paca?). I wonder who would win a boxing match between the two?

LOL! Maybe they could have a Throwdown a la Bobby Flay and have some sort of cook-off. On this side the Pope’s Wienerschnitzel Extraordinaire verses the Dali Lama’s Yak Butter Casserole.

71   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:01 am

I wonder who is holier: The Holy Father who is visiting America this week. Or ‘His Holiness’ the Dali Lama (or is it the Dali El Paca?). I wonder who would win a boxing match between the two?

How about a special edition of Celebrity Smackdown, finishing up with a match-up with the actual “His Holiness”… Scenes of Job 40 come to mind…

72   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 10:01 am

Eric,
Where does God ever refer to himself as “His Holiness”? Perhaps I missed that verse.

I bet you avoid “Iams” pet food, too.

73   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:02 am

We also invited a guest lecturer to our campus who was raised Hindu and became a Christian to speak about his testimony while comparing faiths. He made a very clear defense of Christianity. Why couldn’t Bell do that?

Let’s see:

1) The format of the discussion was not set up for such a response.

2) Who says he didn’t in his personal interactions in Seattle? Or did I miss the FundieCam that followed him 24 hours a day?

74   Eric Van Dyken    
April 16th, 2008 at 10:04 am

Chris L,

Will you join me in expressing astonishment at Nathan’s lack of Christian charity? I hope so, given that it seems to be the main point of your original post. Thanks for your consideration of this request. I do consider it a privalege to be able to comment on your blog, and I appreciate the opportnity. I have read your “how we seek to be different” section, and believe that you mean it.

75   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:06 am

People love Bell’s God because He does not judge, and does not have wrath, and he has provided an entrance to the kingdom for everyone who does not reject it! They are enamored with his ear tickling speech. If we preach a Biblical Gospel, we are not promised this kind of acceptance. We are promised persecution, anger, and rejection by the masses who are unregenerate. Unfortunately, this includes many so called christians.

PB,

You give a perfect example of the false dichotomy of ODM’s (”Bell’s Gospel” vs. the “Biblical Gospel”, which are one in the same). The only “ear tickling” I hear these days comes from those folks who prize perfect orthodoxy as divorced from any truely self-sacrificial praxis. You’ve made a cartoon version of Bell that has no reflection in reality…

76   Pastordude    http://www.thedowngrade2007.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 10:09 am

Chris L.

Nice straw man- fundycam. I can surmise from his public speaking what he says in private. Pretty easy to do. I am sure Jesus is satisfied with his tacit denial of Himself in that situation. Jesus said if we deny Him before men, He will deny us before His father in heaven.

The format? nice excuse. Then do not agree to be a part of the format. He would call the Lama his holiness and not expound on the holiness of Christ? You mention John McArthur-Mac has proven time and again given the opportunity he will proclaim the Gospel. Did you ever think that Bell and Pagitt were chosen for the very reason Mac was not?

77   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 10:11 am

I believe if you think further on that, you will recognize that words and titles have meanings, and that ascribing titles only due to God to men is sinful and blasphemous.

Words only mean things insofar as we give them meaning. I don’t expect Bell thinks that the Dali Lama is on the same level as God, in fact I could about guarantee it. When he is at a event where they both are speaking, he uses the common title for him. I don’t see anything wrong with that.

In Latino cultures, Jesus is a pretty common first name. Is it wrong for Christians to refer to people with this name by it? According to your logic, it seems it would be? It only becomes an issue when we start letting a person or thing take the actual place of God.

78   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:12 am

John,

And Nathan, I have witnessed outside of Starbucks specifically to Hindus, Muslims, Buddhists, and others because there is a large number of them on our local college campus. They are actually very willing to discuss different faiths!

You missed what Nathan actually stated and proved his point…

read it again…
I highlighted some words so they will stand out better for you…

Most of the people who write these hate blogs will NEVER interact with a buddhist, athiest, or hindu on a persoanl level… oh, they’ll give you a story about how they once talked to a Catholic at Starbucks. But I mean they will never have a new-ager over for dinner to meet their kids. So, they have NO IDEA how to talk about Jesus with them. Their idea: go for the jugular, and allor the holy spirit to stop up the wounds.

LOL!

You do crack me up at times John…

iggy

79   Eric Van Dyken    
April 16th, 2008 at 10:13 am

Phil,

Actually, I feed my dog Iams dog food, but I make sure to pronounce it differently, specifically I say “eeams”. If has a more Irish sound to it, and I get a kick out of Irish brougues.

Numerous times in scripture God is referred to as Holy and in fact twice He is referred to as Holy, Holy, Holy. In other words, He is absolutely holy. He is the embodiment of holy. To call someone “his holiness” is to elevate them to another level of holiness than the rest of sinful man. No man is due this honor.

Chris L,

I missed your comment before posting my comment to you. I cannot disagree with you more. Please tell me how Nathan is charitable when he states about a whole group of people that they will not interact with people of another faith on a personal level. He impunes their character with absolutely no personal knowledge or evidence. That is the pinnacle of uncharitability. If you and Nathan choose to read hate into their work, then you are guilty of the same uncharitable approach you decry in this post.

80   Pastordude    http://www.thedowngrade2007.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 10:13 am

Bell’s Gospel is NOT the same. It is false. It is at worst heresy and at best a watered down contextualized version of the truth.

I am thankful for Rick F. who testifies that God can use even the worst of methods (like Godspell) to reach people. God is sovreign, He can do this. However, that does not mean we should endorse false teachings just because God can use anything. We should seek to teach right doctrine at all times.

81   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:13 am

Eric,

Nathan wrote:

Most of the people who write these hate blogs will NEVER interact with a buddhist, athiest, or hindu on a persoanl level… oh, they’ll give you a story about how they once talked to a Catholic at Starbucks. But I mean they will never have a new-ager over for dinner to meet their kids. So, they have NO IDEA how to talk about Jesus with them. Their idea: go for the jugular, and allor the holy spirit to stop up the wounds.

Let us deconstruct:

1) “hate blogs” – I probably would not have classified them as such, though there IS often hate on display there (defining “hate” to be the opposite of what Paul describes in I Cor 13). Are the writers full of hate? Possibly – what they have written, in many cases, certainly is. Perhaps it is their way of ridding the hatred they have and pouring it out into something ‘impersonal’, so that it doesn’t manifest to the flesh-and-blood folks in their lives. I don’t know.

2) The remainder was a generalization which was, indeed, uncharitable. I suspect, though, that the same could be said of 99% of the Christians in the US, who spend most of their time with other Christians and keep the ‘unregenerate’ (nice term to refer to other bearers of the image of God) at arms length, particularly if they are adherents of another religion or anti-Christian lifestyle. I would take Nathan’s latter comment further by saying that it probably applies to MOST Christians – ODM, ECM or whatever. So yes, it was unfair to just apply it to the writers of ODM’s…

82   Pastordude    http://www.thedowngrade2007.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 10:16 am

Iggy,

I didn’t prove any point. My point is that I do interact with hindus etc on a personal level. I do minister to them, drink with them, eat with them, socialize…and present the Gospel.

I do have yet to meet one at Starbucks, however. Those are mostly Catholics.

83   Eric Van Dyken    
April 16th, 2008 at 10:17 am

Phil,

By your logic, then, will you be willing to address me as “the Son of God” and then just let others know that you don’t really mean it? Words have meaning in and of themselves. We don’t get to just ascribe or detract meaning as we want. Otherwise, why would we have a dictionary?

84   Pastordude    http://www.thedowngrade2007.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 10:19 am

Chris,

like it or not, if you have not received God’s grace through faith, you are in fact, unregenerate- dead in your sins, not born again.

Sorry if that theologically correct language does not tickle your ears.

85   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:19 am

John,

I didn’t prove any point. My point is that I do interact with hindus etc on a personal level. I do minister to them, drink with them, eat with them, socialize…and present the Gospel.

Actually now you are just stating this… before you did not.

and good for you! = )

iggy

86   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:20 am

John,

Though you seem pretty defensive still should I highlight the part you keep missing?

LOL!
iggy

87   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 10:22 am

By your logic, then, will you be willing to address me as “the Son of God” and then just let others know that you don’t really mean it?

Maybe, but I’d assume you were either crazy or had stupid parents. You didn’t answer my question. What about people who are actually named “Jesus”. It’s quite common.

It’s the same thing, except your case is actually quite weaker. No where in Scripture is the term “His Holiness” used at all, and people use it a formality for the Dali Lama. I guess we could make it into some sort of litmus test, but what’s the benefit of it?

88   Eric Van Dyken    
April 16th, 2008 at 10:24 am

Chris L,

My hope is that you would hold Nathan to the same level of accountability that you hold others to. Nathan did not make a general statement about Christians across the country and how they don’t relate to nonChristians. Nathan made a direct statement about a group of people that he defined. I hope that you can see the difference.

Also, if you use the standard of describing blogs that Nathan applied to others, this site is every bit as much a hate blog.

89   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:27 am

John,

like it or not, if you have not received God’s grace through faith, you are in fact, unregenerate- dead in your sins, not born again.

But wait! Your allies teach that you need be regenerate BEFORE you are born again…

SO which is it… are we to be born again and then be regenerated as you stated? Or is Steve the “reformed” Camp states must be regenerate before we are can receive God grace through faith?

Come on… with all this “certainty” you guys preach, at least get it straight as to which one is right will you?

Can you give me some clarity on this “squishy language” you guys are using… it seems you disagree yet claim you are both right! Now which of these “truths” am I to believe?

LOL! = )

iggy

90   nc    
April 16th, 2008 at 10:29 am

Wow…who’d a thunk that being polite and using the convention “His Holiness” would become yet another litmus test for people to add to the Scriptures they claim to so dearly love…

Next time you’re in court, you’d better not use the term “Your Honor”. And you better repent of your “pledging allegiance” to a flag–an idol made with human hands…

hmmmm…..

91   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:30 am

That is the pinnacle of uncharitability. If you and Nathan choose to read hate into their work, then you are guilty of the same uncharitable approach you decry in this post.

The “uncharitable” approach chooses to read what is NOT said, whereas the “charitable” approch only judges what is said and done…

I don’t “choose” to read hate into their work – it is on display in what is said – not what is NOT said.

Whether it is Ingrid’s treatment of a store-clerk, or quotes like the following:

Granger Community Church used Van Halen in their worship on March 1 and 2 to set up a sermon entitled, “Tight Like Spandex”. They have posted the video on their website under the “I Love the 80’s” series on this page. To do this is worshiping a golden calf in Christ’s name, blaspheming the most high God and defiling His name with the filth of this world. (emphasis mine)

addressing a Christian girl, Miley Cyrus:

There is no narrow way in Hannah Montana’s world, only a very, very broad way that everyone can travel. For Billy Ray, “God” is responsible for some sort of divine destiny, or fate, but He is not the Lord before whom our knees should bow in submission, in the raising of our children and in everything else.

Or of course, there’s Ingrid’s famous tagline to most anything to do with Brian McLaren or other ECM figures:

Can you hear the hiss?

Actually, yes – and it comes from the writer of the page…

Or we can go to Ken Silva’s writing, which is full of PURPOSEFUL (i.e. he’s been given correct information, but refuses to acknowledge truth) lies, distortions, partial quotes, and lots (and lots and lots) of esoteric, hateful titles for Christian figures.

Sorry, Eric – the hate is on display on AM/Slice/CR?N/etc. – there’s no need to be uncharitable with what’s written between the lines…

92   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 10:31 am

And you better repent of your “pledging allegiance” to a flag–an idol made with human hands…

This actually bothers me a lot, lot more than calling someone by some title…

That’s another discussion though.

93   nc    
April 16th, 2008 at 10:32 am

Eric,

are you conceding then that Ingrid, et. al. run sites that are full of hate?

94   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:33 am

Rob Bell – 2008:

“But my fundamental understanding is that life is a journey. And journey is a fundamentally different way to understand life than destination. And on a journey, all I have and am responsible for is the next step. And that’s all I’m ever asked for, is the next step. I don’t have to have it all figured out, I don’t have to defend it all, I don’t have to have it all nailed down.

And if you can shift from destination understanding to journey, it frees you to take life as it comes. Let it be what it is and then do the next right thing.”

Jesus Christ – circa 28 A.D.

“I go to prepare a place for you”

The word “journey” itself suggests a destination. The sad fact is that many are on a journey described by Bell that will lead to a destination that will not end with the place Jesus is now preparing.

“I am the way, the truth, and the life. No man comes to the Father but by Me.” Systematic Theology by Jesus of Nazareth

95   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:33 am

Eric,

By your logic, then, will you be willing to address me as “the Son of God” and then just let others know that you don’t really mean it?

Then you are confessing you are not saved? I mean there are a couple of usages of the phrase. The Son of God as you stated or sons of God… which if you are a believer you are then a son of God… (John 1:12 KJV)

So I am wondering if you know Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior?

iggy = )

96   Eric Van Dyken    
April 16th, 2008 at 10:34 am

Phil,

I am sorry to hear that you may be willing to call me the “Son of God”.

Jesus’ first name is not His divine title. Would you call a Latin American “Jesus Christ” or “the Messiah” or “Son of God” or “Son of Man”? A title is different than a name. I do not find it wrong to call a Latino by the given name of Jesus. Jesus is the earthly identifying name that was only taken on when He came to earth, it is not His eternal name nor has it ever been exclusive to Him.

Thanks to Phil and Chris L for the responses. I must go now, so probably won’t have anything further to say. May God bless you and may we all seek to serve Him with all or our heart, soul and strength.

97   Eric Van Dyken    
April 16th, 2008 at 10:41 am

I guess I’ll have to comment once more to Iggy,

Did you notice the definite article in front of “Son of God”. “The” is singular and denotes one and only, as opposed to “a”, which denotes one of many. Nice try, though. Jesus Christ is the only one that can be referred to as “the Son of God”.

98   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 10:43 am

The word “journey” itself suggests a destination. The sad fact is that many are on a journey described by Bell that will lead to a destination that will not end with the place Jesus is now preparing.

In a sense, yes, although, even the words we use to describe eternity are not that Scriptural. I think a lot of Christians actually have quite a gnostic view of eternity. They have largely forsaken the idea a physical resurrection for a spiritualized version of some sort of “afterlife”.

When Jesus says He is “preparing a place” for us, it is speaking directly to the customs of a Jewish wedding. The bridegroom would go prepare a place for the marriage to be consummated, and return for the bride. The place wasn’t so much a permanent dwelling, as just somewhere where the marriage was initiated. So in a way it to is speaking of the beginning of a journey, not the end.

So when Creation is renewed, I believe it really will be the beginning of something, not the end..

99   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:45 am

Chris,

like it or not, if you have not received God’s grace through faith, you are in fact, unregenerate- dead in your sins, not born again.

My apologies, John. I forgot you had the copy of the Lamb’s book at your disposal to determine who is and is not regenerate – especially since, to a Calvinist, the pre-destined regenerates may not be living in the way today, but (nonetheless) have no choice as to their future state of regeneration…

I can surmise from his public speaking what he says in private.

Thank you for identifying yourself up-front as having a lack of charity for other brothers in Christ. At least you have the honesty to do so.

Granted, using your test, if one takes the bulk of Bell’s public speaking into account (which means adding these 3 minutes yesterday to the weekly 50+ minutes at Mars Hill), then yes, I would expect that those who personally interacted with Bell would have heard specifically about Christ and witnessed someone demonstrating what it was to try and live like him…

The FundieCam is no straw-man – it basically recognizes that Bell spoke 3 minutes in about 3 hours of time, and that he had (at least) two days not covered on camera. Assuming the worst of those other 48 hours is anti-Christian…

Jesus said if we deny Him before men, He will deny us before His father in heaven.

Hmmm… I didn’t hear him deny Christ – I heard him ANSWER THE QUESTION HE WAS ASKED. Oh, but I guess in the fundy playbook, if he didn’t give the Lama a thumb-in-the-eye, he was “denying Christ”. Please, John…

The format? nice excuse. Then do not agree to be a part of the format.

Yes – it’s back to the conundrum of “accept the invitation (and its restrictions) or not?” Last time I checked, Bell had the Holy Spirit and his local eldership to help with this decision, and not some backwater pastor with a penchant for slander…

You mention John McArthur-Mac has proven time and again given the opportunity he will proclaim the Gospel. Did you ever think that Bell and Pagitt were chosen for the very reason Mac was not?

Who says Johnnie Mac turned down the invite or what the invitation process was – or whether he WOULD have turned it down, given a chance? If he would have accepted the invite and said THE EXACT SAME THINGS Bell did, we would not be hearing these same criticisms, and you wouldn’t hear us making them, either…

100   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:47 am

Rick,

I think you miss that if our focus is about us getting to heaven only. instead we need focus on life as we are living now and being Jesus here to the lost world… being the ambassadors of the ministry of reconciliation.

To many seem to think that millions dying from lack of clean water or AIDS or whatever does not matter. We can pollute the earth and make the water undrinkable as we drill for oil becuase this earth will all burn in the end. That sort of thinking is shortchanging the lost from receiving Jesus.

I see that it is both the journey and destination, Jesus went to prepare a “place” in the current Heaven that we should rest in His presence until the Judgment Day and we receive the New Creation.

Our goal is to strive towards the perfection that will be… though we have not yet attained it. I see that this is nto “salvation” in and of itself, but Salvation being Christ Jesus Himself. We are to dwell now in Him as we will later in the New Creation… though now as imperfect beings.

I hope that makes sense to you. This is way past my bedtime (I work nights) = )

iggy

101   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:48 am

The word “journey” itself suggests a destination. The sad fact is that many are on a journey described by Bell that will lead to a destination that will not end with the place Jesus is now preparing.

Jesus’ teaching about the kingdom of God was primarily about the journey, not the destination. It was on how to live, leaving what happens after death to God. The entire concept of the Kingdom is based on present praxis, with faith in God about the age to come…

102   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:51 am

Eric,

So you are saying you are saved? Are you sure?

I mean then whose son are you… and if you were the only Christian in a group of non Christians would you not be the one of God in that room?

Hey man lighten up a bit… get a sense of humor… just funnin’ wit ya!

iggy

Really I guess you also did not read what I stated too closely as I referred to both and was pointing out that you are a son of God IF you are a believer… if you think I am wrong then argue with John the Apostle over that…

103   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:52 am

Eric,

Do you refer to a judge as “your honor” or pledge allegiance to the flag? Is your pastor referred to as “reverend”?

In all honesty, my answers are yes, yes, and no. Were I in Bell’s place yesterday, this is one thing I can say I would have done differently, and that would have been not to even acknowledge the Dali Lama, so as to not have to give his ‘title’… But that’s me and my walk – not Rob and his…

104   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 10:52 am

Phil and Chris L,

You guys stated it much better than I did… thanks!

iggy

105   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 11:02 am

How do we know when Rob said your holiness… he did not mean hole-y-ness…

Yeah its a stretch… LOL!

Though all this got me thinking…

Hebrews states we have only One High Priest… yet by ODM standard, Paul by calling the high priest in Acts the High Priest did wrong…

Acts 23:2-5

iggy

106   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 11:30 am

Is it just me, or does all this talk remind you of this?

107   Christian    http://www.churchvoices.com
April 16th, 2008 at 11:39 am

Nathan asked a bunch of comments ago:

Why is it that as beleivers we cannot recognize truth unless it has a scripture address tied to it, or some overly churchy word in the verbal proclaimation of it.

Nathan, it is because we do not know the truth. This has an upside and a downside. The upside is that we can reference Scripture to teach somebody who is unfamiliar with said truth. We do this all the time and it is a good thing. However, the downside is that it often shows our ignorance of the truth. Somebody who is supposed to be a mature Christian ought to see the truth and be able to test what somebody says whether or not the other person can quote book, chapter and verse. It is sad that so many “mature christians” are unable to do so.

108   corey    http://learning-to-listen.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 11:42 am

Rick – “I am the way the truth and the life…”

Doesn’t “way” imply journey or path?

109   Pastordude    http://www.thedowngrade2007.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 11:58 am

Chris L

backwater pastor?

Are you guys not doing the same thing criticizing Ingrid, Ken, and Chris R? Last time I checked they were not in your church, and they only have their local pastors/elderboard to answer to.

slander?

Please tell me where I have slandered. I judge Bell based on his written and recorded statements.

thumb in the eye?

Look, he could have said The Dalai Lama instead of his holiness. If I were real uncharitable, I would say that he also placed the Dalai and the Bishop on the same level as Biblical Christianity.

Brother in Christ?

I don’t know. I doubt it sometimes. But I let God sort out who is in Christ or who is not. But since Bell and Pagitt claim to be, according to scripture, we not only have the right to test/judge them based on their words and lives, we have the responsibility.

Johnnie Mac being invited?

No way. They invited and screened very carefully based on the fact that they knew the point they were trying to get across. That was obvious. If Johnnie Mac were there, I know he would not have been so squishy.

110   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 11:59 am

how not to use spirituality as a weapon, which is what a large portion of Christians, Muslims, etc…do…not Buddhists…it’s really an Abrahamic phenomenon.

Not Buddhists?
Yes Buddhists . . . Burma, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Bhutan . . .

111   Pastordude    http://www.thedowngrade2007.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 12:02 pm

llama llama dalai llama….

112   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 12:06 pm

PB,

We’ve explained to you the differentiation so many times that it’s pointless to try again.

Only the blind won’t see…

113   Tim Reed, Owosso MI    http://churchvoices.com
April 16th, 2008 at 12:15 pm

like it or not, if you have not received God’s grace through faith, you are in fact, unregenerate- dead in your sins, not born again.

Sorry if that theologically correct language does not tickle your ears.

Theologically correct, and wholly unBiblical. Which is probably a good description of ODMs.

114   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 12:19 pm

Most of the people who write these hate blogs will NEVER interact with a buddhist, athiest, or hindu on a persoanl level… oh, they’ll give you a story about how they once talked to a Catholic at Starbucks. But I mean they will never have a new-ager over for dinner to meet their kids. So, they have NO IDEA how to talk about Jesus with them. Their idea: go for the jugular, and allor the holy spirit to stop up the wounds.

I think if I ran a discernment blog Nathan would label it a hate blog. No matter how nice I tried to be. And he would be saying these kinds of judgemental things about me . . . without having a clue about what my personal relationships with unbelievers are.

Sound like PRIDE talking.

Know why I’m especially interested in the Bell/Lama situation? Because of people I have good relationships with, who are being influenced by New Age beliefs; some would even say are New Agers.

It would be difficult for me to find some area of discernment that I’m interested in that ISN’T affecting or starting to affect individual people I know (have relationships with, Nathan) and nations that I care about.

It may be that there are people out there that run discernment blogs, some even that I myself might find “hateful” or “irresponsible.” But I really wouldn’t want to pretend that I knew anything about their personal relationships and feelings towards unbelievers.

115   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 12:24 pm

However, since Wikipedia is becoming more-and-more a key source for information on the web, it is important that information about the church, its denominations, movements and members be accurate and free of lies, slander and discernmentalist TruthTM. The blogosphere is full enough of such lies as spread by ODM’s and their spiritually-stunted, yet still Christian, lackeys.

(Chris L’s wikipedia article)

So Chris would Nathan’s comment make it onto a Wiki article about ODM’s?

116   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 12:33 pm

“discernment blog” = oxymoron

117   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 12:35 pm

“discernment blog” = oxymoron

Isn’t this site supposed to be a discernment blog?

118   Tim Reed, Owosso MI    http://churchvoices.com
April 16th, 2008 at 12:36 pm

Please tell me where I have slandered. I judge Bell based on his written and recorded statements.

No you don’t. You judge Bell based on ~3 statements and a footnote he’s ever made. You’ve made no attempt to judge 99% of his work, nor to understand the 1% you do criticize as he intended it to be understood (you know that whole historo-grammatical hermeneutic thing.)

119   nc    
April 16th, 2008 at 12:37 pm

Just a side note:

i’ve never met anyone who self-identified as New Age/new ager….

where are these people?

besides the Trilateral commission, the Masons, the Illuminati and the Jews who run the banking industry and Hollywood.

Sheeesh.

120   Tim Reed, Owosso MI    http://churchvoices.com
April 16th, 2008 at 12:39 pm

Isn’t this site supposed to be a discernment blog?

No you see from our mission statement we don’t define ourselves as a discernment blog.

121   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 12:46 pm

It may be that there are people out there that run discernment blogs, some even that I myself might find “hateful” or “irresponsible.” But I really wouldn’t want to pretend that I knew anything about their personal relationships and feelings towards unbelievers.

Should read:
It may be that there are people out there that run discernment blogs, some even that I myself might find “hateful” or “irresponsible” who don’t have relationships with unbelievers, don’t know how to talk to them about Jesus, and have no desire to befriend them. But I really wouldn’t want to pretend that I knew anything about their personal relationships and feelings towards unbelievers based on the fact that they run a discernment blog.

122   Matt B    http://matbathome.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 1:05 pm

I think if I ran a discernment blog Nathan would label it a hate blog. No matter how nice I tried to be. And he would be saying these kinds of judgemental things about me . . . without having a clue about what my personal relationships with unbelievers are.

Amy, you and other odms have interacted with nonbelievers on this blog. You’ve been nothing but a jerk to them.

123   Keith    http://fivepts.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 1:15 pm

Amy:This site is not a discernment blog. This should be evident from a thorough and sincere reading of their mission statement linked above.

Having hung around here for a while now, I can unequivocally state that the mission of this site is simply to exercise their “keenness of insight and judgment” (as defined by Webster’s) in regard to OTHER websites that exist only for the purpose of exposing what they see as unBiblical teaching or practices. In other words, this site exists to discern help you see and understand everything that is bad about OTHER blogs/websites…see, that’s not “discernment” at all.

124   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 1:17 pm

Actually, Keith, the purpose of the site is to defend Christian brothers from said “discernment” sites (i.e. to protect against friendly fire)…

Unfortunately, as you’ve just demonstrated, such ‘discernment’ is lacking from the discernment crowd…

125   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 1:19 pm

PB John,
You never did answer my question as to which of you has The Truth… is it you or Steve? I am waiting since you are correcting our doctrines here…

iggy

fyi it was the question earlier this morning:
Time: April 16, 2008, 10:27 am

126   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 1:20 pm

So Chris would Nathan’s comment make it onto a Wiki article about ODM’s?

No – it’s blog-sourced, and thus, would not be a viable source… Neither would ODM’s, for that matter, apart from things published about them in verifiable sources (i.e. not blogs)…

127   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 1:21 pm

Amy, you and other odms have interacted with nonbelievers on this blog. You’ve been nothing but a jerk to them.

You know, Matt, that is the most amazing thing I’ve ever heard you say. Are you thinking of my discussion with Evan? I can’t think of anyone else here who has made some claim of not being a Christian. I have purposefully stayed away from reacting to many things that Evan has said. Please show me how I’ve been a jerk.

128   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 1:26 pm

Keith,
Thanks for the clarification. :)

Matt,
I seriously want to know how I have been a jerk to any unbeliever on this blog. In all fairness you should also define who the other ODM’s are who you’re accusing of being a jerk in their interactions with unbelievers, which unbeliever those interactions were with, and what was “jerky” about them.

129   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 1:29 pm

amy,

Please show me how I’ve been a jerk

Romans 3: 22. This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, 23. for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24. and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.

Does that help?
iggy

130   Matt B    http://matbathome.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 1:32 pm

You can email me privately and I’ll show some of the stuff you’ve said. I can’t do it right away as I am busy at work. Just leave a message on my blog.

131   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 1:40 pm

Matt B,
I have absolutely no desire to e-mail you privately. You made a public accusation. You’re welcome to back it up publically or to apologize. After you do that you can address the other ODM’s you were referring to.

Slander.

132   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 1:42 pm

Wow… talk about hypocrisy… thanks for the object lesson, Amy…

133   nc    
April 16th, 2008 at 1:45 pm

Ya know, for all the folk that are sooooo bent out of shape about this blog, I’m wondering if you’ve ever taken issue with the tone of the blogs critiqued here?

I ask because the “tone” is always angry, terse, demeaning and rude.

So again I will say….

WHAT IS DONE HERE IS NOT, IS NOT, IS NOT THE SAME THING.

It’s not the same thing to be angry at people who make a “ministry” in the name of Jesus out of kicking people in the shins, being negative and generally lying about people (a proven fact.)

It’s just not.

Sure…circumspection is needed by all…

But if someone goes around angrily kicking people in the shins and won’t stop…

then the people with bruised shins who are angry are not experiencing the same thing, or expressing the same thing.

And folks who witness the shin kicking and tell people to stop, when they experience frustration and anger, it’s not the same thing.

there’s no equivalence here…

So save it.

Or, better yet,

turn that cold, clear, compassionate and always above reproach heart and mind and bring it to bear on the people who make a “ministry” of shin kicking, fear, control, and anger in the name of their angry god.

Until I see evidence of that, especially if you agree with them, then you’re whining about “You do it tooooo” is incorrect, wrongheaded and obnoxious.

134   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 1:49 pm

I have absolutely no desire to e-mail you privately. You made a public accusation. You’re welcome to back it up publically or to apologize.

Perhaps the desire for discression on Matt’s part is in being sensitive to the non-believers (or new believers) he’s thinking of…

135   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 1:51 pm

Wow… talk about hypocrisy… thanks for the object lesson, Amy…

Explanation?

136   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 1:53 pm

Chris L,
And since you seem to have a problem with something I’ve said, and not with what Matt’s said then can I assume you also think I’ve been a jerk with unbelievers?

Which unbeliever? How?

137   oscar    
April 16th, 2008 at 1:56 pm

From bell’s answer if I was a non-christian I would have said..
” wow that was nice “.
If jesus had one chance, one youtube clip, one conference, one minute; what would he say?????
John 14:6?
john 3:16?
Or would he adapt to his surroundings ?
You think he would not use verses from the bible?
You think he would not call people to repent?

The reason he die for us was because we are sinners and we need repentance.

Jesus would never adapt to any man or any conference. Do we as human do? Ofcourse, we just wanna be accepted.
Rob is now accepted.

138   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 2:06 pm

If jesus had one chance, one youtube clip, one conference, one minute; what would he say?????

One thing’s for sure, He wouldn’t quote from the New Testament…

Jesus would never adapt to any man or any conference.

Actually, Jesus adapted quite a bit when He was on earth. He was God incarnate, come to earth in a very specific cultural context. If that’s not adaptation, nothing is.

He actually ticked off the religious establishment of His day quite a bit as well because He wouldn’t give them the answers they wanted to hear. Hmmm…if only there were some modern-day parallels….

139   Keith    http://fivepts.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 2:06 pm

“defend” — “discern”
pu-tae-toe — pu-tah-toe

140   Pastordude    http://www.thedowngrade2007.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 2:06 pm

Iggy,
Regeneration is simoultaneous with repentance and faith, due to the fact that God gives the faith and the ability to repent.

I guess I don’t qualify as a fundamentalist now?

141   Pastordude    http://www.thedowngrade2007.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 2:08 pm

The Rosharch blot looks to me like Iggy writing one of his books on his blog or Tim R. rocking out to some death metal.

142   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 2:09 pm

Oscar,

Thank you, as well, for proving my point re: being an uncharitable observer, since you’re judging another brother in Christ not on what he did, but what you wish he would have done.

Bravo.

I believe someone wrote:

Each one should test his own actions. Then he can take pride in himself, without comparing himself to somebody else, for each one should carry his own load.

The last time I checked, nobody named ‘oscar’ was called upon to carry Rob Bell’s load.

If jesus had one chance, one youtube clip, one conference, one minute; what would he say?

You’ve created a false dilemma to support your loveless Christianity – whose to say what was said off camera, or that this is Bell’s only opportunity with these folks. How about worrying about your own burdens to bear and allowing other Christians to bear their own, as well, rather than playing Monday-morning quarterback…

143   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 2:14 pm

“defend” — “discern”
pu-tae-toe — pu-tah-toe

Defend:
1. To make or keep safe from danger, attack, or harm.
2. To support or maintain, as by argument or action; justify.

Discern:
1. To perceive with the eyes or intellect; detect.
2. To recognize or comprehend mentally.
3. To perceive or recognize as being different or distinct; distinguish.

Perhaps your inability to discern the difference is a case-in-point as to your discerning capability…

144   oscar    
April 16th, 2008 at 2:23 pm

chris,
Isnt what you are doign can also be monday-morning quaterbacking?
Trying to defend the quaterback interception that cost the team the game?
At the end of the game the team will say it was a team loss and will stand by their quaterback, carrying the load off their quaterback.
Why are you carrying his load?
He threw an interception, it cost us a chance.
Do I hate Rob Bell? NO I don’t. Should he be held acountable for he’s actions? Yes.
He represented christianity and that includes you and me.
Just like we held Ingrid and Ken to every bad thing they write.

You have to admit you are one angry dude.

Rob needs to preach the whole gospel and not just concentrate on love. ( like joel Osteen )
There’s also repentance and turning away from sin.

Where you there to see what he said off camera? or are we speculating?

145   Keith    http://fivepts.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 2:27 pm

Hey, as long as you’re not “judging another brother…”

“Justify…” = “we don’t define ourselves as a discernment blog”

“…nobody named ‘oscar’ was called upon to carry Rob Bell’s load.” If Rob didn’t call Oscar, does that mean that he DID call you?

How do you know WHAT to defend if you dont’ first DISCERN it needs your defending?

146   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 2:35 pm

Rob needs to preach the whole gospel and not just concentrate on love. ( like joel Osteen )
There’s also repentance and turning away from sin.

This is probably not worth the effort, but this is a pet peeve of mine. Apparently, when John says, “God is love”, he doesn’t mean it. So what is it? God’s 50% love and 50% wrath? Half good cop, half bad cop? Jesus is the loving incarnation of God holding back the angry, wrathful Old Testament God? No wonder people have a mixed up view of God. Christians have given it to them.

Romans says it’s God’s kindness that leads to repentance. It’s the Holy Spirit that does this. Not us. We are not the Holy Spirit, and we don’t do His work. We do not discern the heart’s of men. We do not lead men to repentance. We are simply to be mirrors that reflect the glory and love of God and participate in the love of the father.

I don’t think it’s possible to overstate God’s love for people. No amount of hyperbole is too much. It’s scandalous how much God love’s us. It’s downright shameful. God humiliated Himself to show us. When we get a glimpse of that, it will cause us to bow down in awe. It’s not some idiot standing on street corner that convinces people they need God.

147   Matt B    http://matbathome.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 2:40 pm

Amy-

The reason I don’t want to mention names in public is for discretion.

My email is matb@ix.netcom.com

148   oscar    
April 16th, 2008 at 2:45 pm

phil:
People that stand on a corner preaching or convincing as you put it are ” Idiots” ?

Didn’t jesus preached out doors?

please clarify.

149   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 2:51 pm

PB John,

Funny that you disagree with Steve Camp… but agree with me…

Are you certain you are right? Then is Steve wrong? and If Steve is wrong is he then teaching wrong doctrine…

Keith, what do you think?

Who is right Steve or PB?

iggy

150   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 2:53 pm

Isnt what you are doign can also be monday-morning quaterbacking?

Let’s see – suggesting that Bell be left to carry his own load? ot sure how that’s quarterbacking… As I’ve noted, I suspect I would have done some things differently, but again I wasn’t there and I don’t know the entire context, so who am I to say?

Trying to defend the quaterback interception that cost the team the game?

I’m not sure we “lost the game” – it seems to me that ‘winning’ is highly subjective, and much of what seems to be defined as “winning” is higly short-term and (likely) short-sighted as well. Much of what seems to be defined right now as “winning the game” sees every interaction as a hill to die on…

Why are you carrying his load?

I’m not – I’m saying that we should let him carry it and that we should be charitable (i.e. loving) brothers who ‘always protect, always trust, always hope, always persevere’ – rather than whining about what “might have been done” or “what we would have done”. I’m saying that we should let him bear whatever burdens he has been given, and that we trust that the Holy Spirit will guide him as he should go – even if we don’t understand the Spirit’s working. I’m saying that we should have a little more faith in God rather than acting like cannibals eating their young.

Should he be held acountable for he’s actions? Yes.

And who appointed you to do so? He will be held accountable, even moreso as a leader. Maybe following the advice of Gamaliel would be in order as it pertains to Brother Bell…

He represented christianity and that includes you and me.

I didn’t see anyone else clamouring to get on the stage – but rather lots of howls of protest for doing so in the first place, and lots of sympathy for the “turn or burn”-ers outside. If you want to talk about ‘witnessing’, I see far poorer witness for Christ outside that auditorium than existed inside it…

You have to admit you are one angry dude.

Wow – you really made me laugh on that one (seriously) :) I’ve been told by a number of folks that they don’t understand why, when my life is at its worst I still seem a whole lot happier than most folks at the best times in their lives.

Anger? No. Sadness – sure thing.

Rob needs to preach the whole gospel and not just concentrate on love. ( like joel Osteen )

There’s also repentance and turning away from sin.

I take it you never listen to his church’s podcast… He doesn’t use all of the Christianese, but those are covered…

Where you there to see what he said off camera? or are we speculating?

What part of ‘always protect, always trust, always hope, always persevere’ do you not understand?

I’ve listened to enough of his sermons and stories (along with some first-hand from people in his congregation) to have a good idea of how he approaches people on a personal level, and I happen to be acquainted with the Holy Spirit. I trust the latter much more than the former, and both together give me no concern that Christ will be well-represented.

How do you know WHAT to defend if you dont’ first DISCERN it needs your defending?

Keith – we’re going back to the blind squirrel and the acorn when it comes to the ODM’s… Discerning that they’re gossipmongering against a brother and acting in a divisive manner against the bride of Christ doesn’t require a discernment equivalent of rocket science….

151   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 3:01 pm

oscar,
Well Jesus taught outdoors, he didn’t harass people the way modern street evangelists like to do. The majority of people who were listening to Jesus were there because they wanted to be. He wasn’t just yelling to random groups of people.

I was probably over-zealous in categorizing all people who preach in the public as idiots, but I think a lot of it isn’t necessarily Holy Spirit led. I know a lot of these people are well-intentioned, but I believe a lot of them are midguided.

I also don’t see Jesus giving a “turn or burn” message when He teaches, at least not a universal one. When He does talks about coming judgement, it’s to the Jewish people who have been given the Torah and should be following it. In fact they have no excuse not to. He didn’t go about condemning random pagans, and He certainly would have had ample opportunity to do so.

152   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 3:11 pm

Rob needs to preach the whole gospel and not just concentrate on love.

Oh – just to note – ROB WASN’T ASKED TO PREACH here – he was on a Q&A panel, answering questions from gradeschool kids…

Interestingly, no more questions got directed to him by the moderator after he brought up resurrection. Coincidence? Possibly, but not necessarily…

153   Keith    http://fivepts.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 3:18 pm

Did he just call me a “squirrel?!”

154   Keith    http://fivepts.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 3:19 pm

“gradeschool kids” like squirrels…or so I’ve been told.

155   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 3:20 pm

“gradeschool kids” like squirrels…or so I’ve been told.

Gradeschool kids also seemed to like Jesus, even though it ticked off the more religious folks to watch it…

156   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 3:22 pm

Rob needs to preach the whole gospel and not just concentrate on love.

I was in line at Starbucks the other day, and the lady asked me how my day was. I said I was busy, and I asked her how she was doing. I got my drink and paid.

I didn’t preach the whole gospel, I guess. But I’ll probably go back to that store and have continued conversations with her. Hopefully I can manage to not be a jerk. So should I “preach the whole Gospel” in every interaction I have? What difference does it make if I get my paycheck from a church or not (I do get paid a bit for doing campus ministry).

As Christians, it seems we’re all working toward the same thing. If you’re standard says that Rob Bell needs to “preach the Gospel” at evey opportunity, than you better be holding yourself to your standard.

You see, this is where this pseudo-logic breaks down. There is no such thing as simply “preaching the Gospel”. If our lives as Christians aren’t one holistic Gospel presentation, we are failing to live up to the Church’s mission. The Gospel cannot be distilled to 4-points, 3 verses, or whatever. The Gospel is alive in us. It’s living, breathing, and organic. We are living proof of the resurrection past, present, and future. We are living epistles.

157   oscar    
April 16th, 2008 at 3:22 pm

cris,
I am glad your are a happy dude, may God keep blessing you.

Yes I do actully listen to his podcast.
The reason why I said what I said is because here in New York he is view as someone who side steps alot of issues with the gospel.
What I meant as The whole gospel I wasn’t implying 50-50.

I will take your word that he does reach out to other people when not in public. I am know we all do.
But he was asked to be there, and had an oportunity to answer with the word of God.
I am not one to listen and try to read between the lines.
People who do not know christ wouldn’t do it either.

If you do see the entire conference, the rest of the panel actually shared their beliefs on their religion.

I believe if you have a burden I will try to help you carry it. I ma not jesus though but I sure will try to help you with it. Its the love we have for our neighbor.
I am not a burn in hell kind of guy. But that is the also the word of God, specially in these last days.
People need love and people need repentance.

158   oscar    
April 16th, 2008 at 3:29 pm

phil…
You know that I meant when you are on stage as a pastor.
Never did i mention at every oportunity you will preach the whole gospel. Dont take something and extended to fit your thoughs.

I guess I am just another Idiot standing on a corner.

159   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 3:35 pm

Everyone please pray about this if you will…

160   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 3:39 pm

Rick – “I am the way the truth and the life…”

Doesn’t “way” imply journey or path?

Yes and no. Jesus and His atonement is the way which is totally by faith. What Bell described was a forgiving way of life which can be exhibited by unbelievers.

161   Keith    http://fivepts.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 3:42 pm

Do you mean a squirrel like this?

162   Keith    http://fivepts.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 3:43 pm

Oscar, scoot over…you’re in my space!

163   oscar    
April 16th, 2008 at 4:01 pm

sorry keith!!..I am done

164   Jonathan    
April 16th, 2008 at 4:09 pm

Hey Phil,
You used the term gnostic…I don’t think it means what you think it means! LOL

165   Keith    http://fivepts.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 4:09 pm

On a WAY more serious note: I just read the story about the fire in Billings. I’ve sent a donation to the Red Cross there to help the families effected by this tragedy. Will be praying also.

Red Cross – Donation Page

166   Chris    http://agendalesslove.wordpress.com
April 16th, 2008 at 4:15 pm

There is really too much to cover here but for everyones enjoyment I present a list of logical fallacies.

By no means is this extensive but interesting nonetheless.

Iggy I’m praying!

167   Keith    http://fivepts.blogspot.com
April 16th, 2008 at 4:20 pm

When donating online, there is a place to note that you want to donate to the “Prickett Lane fire/disaster relief”

168   Neil    
April 16th, 2008 at 5:01 pm

hmmmm… someone should write a theology of lost opotunities and why those who lost them should be judged.

169   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 5:31 pm

The reason I don’t want to mention names in public is for discretion.

Matt,
But you already mentioned my name, as being someone who has acted like a jerk in communicating with unbelievers on this site. Perhaps you should have thought about discretion first?

Whose name is it that you want to be discrete about? The unbeliever(s)? For some reason they deserve discretion and I don’t?

The other ODM’s? It’s hard to believe you would want to be discrete about that. I’m not interested in your private opinions about ODM’s acting like jerks towards unbelievers on this site.

I won’t be personally e-mailing you.

170   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 5:38 pm

I won’t be personally e-mailing you.

Trranslation: My indignation and bluster was all that was important – I could care less about the actual answer to the question I asked…

171   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 5:46 pm

My apologies – the last comment was very smart-alecy…

172   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 6:08 pm

In the interfaith dialogue we see a Muslim lady quoting the Koran, a Sikh Hindu quoting his scriptures, the Dalai Lama quoting Buddha, and all of them suggest that we are all worshiping the same god. From the Sikh Hindu comes this:

The Sikh scriptures start with a word “aconcard” and that is “God is one”. And I think that’s the core thing, we are all children of the same god. It is universal. So when we recognize that feeling that we all are from, whether we believe in a formalized god or an infinite being or a spiritual sense that pervades humanity or cosmos, does not matter.

There was wide latitude for everyone to confess their god and most did just that. Would any of you sit there and not gently challenge that statement at the expense of being uncomfortable? I, by God’s grace, would have presented the exclusivity of Christ in the most gracious way I could, but I would not have allowed that to go unchallenged.

I do not expect even tacit agreement, however, this to many is representative of the greater problem and is not isolated to this particular conference. We may have to one day give our lives for Christ, as many do around the world now. I pray we will be faithful to that highest of privileges if called upon.

173   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 6:33 pm

Rick,

As I noted above – do I wish Rob would have said more? Sure.

Do I know why he did not? No I do not.

Do I know why he seemed to have much less ‘air time’ than a number of the other panelists? No, we don’t.

Do we know what the ‘constraints’ were for panelists, besides those vocalized during the opening? No we don’t.

Do we know what the Holy Spirit was leading Rob to say/do? No, we don’t.

Do we know if he followed the Spirit’s leading? No, we do not.

In light of these questions and answers – regardless of WHO the Christian in question is (Bell, MacArthur, Warren, Driscoll, Piper – whoever), because he is my brother, I am going to assume the best answers to those questions above, rather than assume the worst – and I certainly am not going to proclaim my holiness to the heavens because so-and-so didn’t say what I “would have said” were I sitting in his place.

That response is utterly anti-Christ.

174   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 6:59 pm

“and I certainly am not going to proclaim my holiness to the heavens”

Off topic and a personal interpretation of my comment. And an “anti-christ” sighting to boot! Not just borderline, but “utterly”. This seems to be a topic about which you cannot remain dispassionate and objective. Where can I go when my comment has earned the “anti-christ” trophy? :)

175   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 7:28 pm

Trranslation: My indignation and bluster was all that was important – I could care less about the actual answer to the question I asked…

The truth is 1) that I am just extremely cautious about e-mailing anyone that I know only from the blog world. 2)No one should be forced/manipulated into carrying on such a private conversation by a tossed-out and unsupported criticism. 3) I believe that if someone thinks it’s important to give personal condemnation publically they need to publically support what they are saying.

As the situation stands I am now categorized as a “jerk in my interactions with unbelievers” on this site. I don’t even know what behavior Matt would define as “jerk-like.” I don’t know what conversations he is talking about.

How would you like it if an ODM said “Chris you act like a jerk with unbelievers on this site.” And that person’s response to your asking them to support that idea is “e-mail me.” How would you feel? It wouldn’t be fine. I believe you would insist that the person back up their claims publically instead of resorting to “e-mail me.”

It’s sad that you not only will not call Nathan or Matt out for behavior that you would despise in an ODM but you also give support to their behavior.

I’ve never seen you act like a jerk with an unbeliever on this site. If someone publically accused you of such behavior I would appreciate it if they publically said why. I certainly wouldn’t support them for saying “E-mail me privately if you want to know why I publically called you a jerk.”

176   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 7:39 pm

How would you like it if an ODM said “Chris you act like a jerk with unbelievers on this site.” And that person’s response to your asking them to support that idea is “e-mail me.” How would you feel? It wouldn’t be fine. I believe you would insist that the person back up their claims publically instead of resorting to “e-mail me.”

Actually, I’ve gotten exactly that (’email me’)on a couple of occasions, and that’s exactly what I did (and in one case got a semi-retraction). So, no I didn’t find it “un-fine”…

It’s sad that you not only will not call Nathan or Matt out for behavior that you would despise in an ODM but you also give support to their behavior.

What did Nathan do? If you’re referencing what written far above here, I consider it properly addressed.

As far as Matt’s comment (which was broader than just you, Amy), you’ve been given the means of redress, and I fully expect that if Matt was just bluffing and had no actual data (and I can think of a couple of homosexual-related threads that might fit that particular line of thought), then I would expect that he’d print a retraction. If, however, he is acting in discretion toward an unbeliever, he has my support. Sorry, but if you’re unwilling to email him, that’s your problem.

If you can’t/won’t (all of the writers here can see your email address, so it’s not like you’re giving him information he doesn’t already have), then it really has entered the realm of being your problem. He’s offered you the data – which you will be perfectly capable of making public, should you so desire. I don’t see any problem here…

177   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 7:46 pm

This seems to be a topic about which you cannot remain dispassionate and objective.

I don’t take most Christian pile-on’s dispassionately. I don’t think we’re necessarily called upon to do so. Since I happen to listen to 2-4 podcasts on a regular basis – with MHBC’s being one of them – then it is more personal, because lies are much easier to spot.

Additionally, when it comes to Monday-morning quarterbacking (criticizing what wasn’t said/done), I also take it a bit more passionately, as the scriptures are more clear as to the nature of the fruits of the spirit, particularly hope and love, and such things (second-guessing) are anti-Christian. (meaning, specifically, that they are directly opposed to the teachings of Jesus and his disciples).

Where can I go when my comment has earned the “anti-christ” trophy?

If you consider that you’ve earned it, you can join the rest of us sinners, who – by definition – have earned ‘anti-christian’ trophies of our own…

178   Rick Frueh    http://judahslion.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 7:50 pm

(As he ascends the stage to give his “anti-christ” acceptance speech)

Ladies and Gentlemen, it is with great surprise that I accept this award, and I would like to thank all the little people who made it possible.

I would LIKE to thank all the little people, but I cannot. I achieved this all on my own! :)

179   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 8:31 pm

What did Nathan do? If you’re referencing what written far above here, I consider it properly addressed.

Matt’s name-calling was written in response to my post about Nathan’s condemnation of ODM’s. It could be implied that he is saying, yes, Nathan, you are right, ODM’s don’t know how to treat unbelievers: Amy and other ODM’s behavior on this site is evidence of that.

I see absolutely no way that his comment served any good purpose, and I absolutely will not be bullied into thinking that it’s my fault that Matt won’t publically back up what he said.

It would be interesting to know just what I’ve said on a “homosexual thread” that showed that I was acting like a jerk.

Is it because it was a “homosexual thread” that my behavior was “jerky?”

Do you have different standards for “homosexual threads” than for other threads? Would it be considered rude for example for Matt to tell a practicing homosexual unbeliever that he behaved like a jerk towards unbelievers and to e-mail him if he wanted to know why?

In my alleged jerky behavior to unbelievers did I ever say anything like “You’re acting like a jerk towards believers! E-mail me if you want to know what I’m talking about!”

180   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 8:36 pm

Amy,

Perhaps your skin is too thin to be posting in online forums…

181   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
April 16th, 2008 at 8:44 pm

Amy,
That was one of the best rants I’ve ever read. I mean that.

182   amy    
April 16th, 2008 at 8:52 pm

Perhaps your skin is too thin to be posting in online forums…

Why do you claim that this site is about holding people accountable for what they say?

I assume that if CRN posts “Chris acts like a jerk towards unbelievers” tomorrow with no explanation everything will be fine when an ODM gets on here and says, “E-mail me for details.”

183   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 9:08 pm

Amy, they’ve said much worse about me and refused to return emails – or to answer questions publicly or privately. You, on the other hand have the means of redress at your fingertips and have chosen, instead, to grandstand and pout. I have zero sympathy for you, and your parallels & hypotheticals are worthless…

Why do you claim that this site is about holding people accountable for what they say?

Matt has given you the opportunity to explore his comment, and you’ve chosen to whine and grandstand instead.

I assume that if CRN posts “Chris acts like a jerk towards unbelievers” tomorrow with no explanation everything will be fine when an ODM gets on here and says, “E-mail me for details.”

If every time you or an ODM made a comment about my action I had the opportunity to email and get clarification – with the opportunity to post it for the world to see after private communication, I would be ecstatic at that level of accountability.

As per usual exachanges with you, this isn’t about the nominal topic at hand, but rather a feeble attempt to play ‘gotcha’. You have your avenue of redress and “holding Matt accountable” – use it or shut up about it.

184   Matt    http://matbathome.blogspot.com/
April 16th, 2008 at 9:46 pm

Amy- I’ll try to make this the last I say about this.

I am guessing, that if we got down to the brass tacks, you and I share an almost identical doctrinal statement. That being the case, I feel that those who share the same doctrinal statement should behave in a certain manner, especially to those who hold to a more “liberal” doctrinal statement. People who don’t share my doctrinal statement, I don’t hold to the same standards.

If you want to email me privately, feel free. If you don’t, let’s just drop it.

185   nathan    http://www.nathanneighbour.com
April 16th, 2008 at 10:30 pm

Oh Amy, Amy, Amy…

Where did I condemn ODMs? Not on this thread. To review

Most of the people who write these hate blogs will NEVER interact with a buddhist, athiest, or hindu on a persoanl level… oh, they’ll give you a story about how they once talked to a Catholic at Starbucks. But I mean they will never have a new-ager over for dinner to meet their kids. So, they have NO IDEA how to talk about Jesus with them. Their idea: go for the jugular, and allor the holy spirit to stop up the wounds.

definitely not a condemnation. Sorry, nice try though.

186   Neil    
April 16th, 2008 at 11:13 pm

I assume that if CRN posts “Chris acts like a jerk towards unbelievers” tomorrow with no explanation everything will be fine when an ODM gets on here and says, “E-mail me for details.”

This would mean a change of policy on their part to allow commenting.

Neil

187   John    http://www.verumserum.com
April 17th, 2008 at 1:08 am

Chris,

Good post.

That second clip was an excellent answer, IMHO.

188   Evan Hurst    http://breaktheterror.wordpress.com
April 17th, 2008 at 2:23 am

snarkfest 2008…

To call someone “his holiness” is to elevate them to another level of holiness than the rest of sinful man. No man is due this honor.

sorry, but Christianity doesn’t have the market cornered on titles like “your holiness,” and it’s just common decency when in Rome, to do as the Romans do. same as when a journalist mentions the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, and does what i just did, or when a Christian asks that another person not take their Lord’s name in vain in their presence.

if Christians can’t relate to humans on a human level of respect and understanding, how can Christians ever hope to relate to humans on a spiritual level?

189   Zan    
April 17th, 2008 at 5:57 am

I had less of a problem with RB calling him “your holiness” than I do with everyone this week calling the Pope “our Holy Father”. The former is more of a sign of respect for a spiritual leader (even one not of our faith), whereas the latter…well, I only have one Holy Father…and he ain’t Him!