Learn to Discern: Mars Hill Peaceful Protest and Letter to Mars Hill Members by Pastor Matt Rogers

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Mars Hill Peaceful Protest and Letter to Mars Hill Members by Matt Rogers

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Yesterday, a group of approximately 100 people, former members of Mars Hill church, gathered outside of Pastor Mark Driscoll’s Mars Hills Bellevue campus to peacefully protest Mark Driscoll’s abusive leadership. I followed social media and gathered what I could find, tweets, pictures, blog articles and news articles, into a Storify:

Coverage of Mars Hill Peaceful Protest and Commentary.

After this protest, a volunteer pastor at Mars Hill, Pastor Matt Rogers, posted the following note on the Mars Hill bulletin board.  Those of us who have been in spiritually abusive churches will probably be familiar with this type of language.

What can we learn and discern from this letter? What do his words really mean to his church members?

Admin note:  I’m issuing a trigger alert. For those who have recently left a spiritually abusive church, this may be difficult to read – a number of people have said it was triggering.  Please exercise caution.  ~ja

Responses to Lawsuit Filed against Sovereign Grace Ministries


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Mars Hill, Matt Rogers, Mark Driscoll, Peaceful Protest Screen Shot 2014-08-04 at 11.53.19 AM

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From Pastor Matt Rogers:

This past Sunday outside our building about 60 professing Christians led a protest, left a bit of trash, and slandered good men. Inside the building our church family worshipped Jesus. Let that image be what defines us. Others will cast aspersions, but we will worship Jesus.

We cannot let fear rule our church. We must choose love. Choosing fear would lead us to attack those who are attacking us. Instead we will choose to love them by praying for them. Choosing fear will drive us to anger and bitterness which will spill out in how we talk about them, engage with them and eventually even with each other. Choosing love will be our witness to all the outsiders watching us right now that we forgive just as God in Christ forgave us. By refusing to give into fear we will commend Christ to our city.

Choosing fear shapes how we interact with each other as well. Choosing fear leads to second guessing and distrusting the statements of our leaders. Choosing fear leads to not standing up for the truth and the honor of good men because of what might come our way. Choosing love will enable us to show grace toward one another, to trust the Spirit at work in one another, and encourage each other to do the same.

Trust is a choice. At some point you simply have to choose to trust someone or not trust them. Extending trust to another Christian is trusting the Holy Spirit at work in them. Trusting a fellow Christian means that when there is sin the Spirit will bring repentance. Trusting a fellow Christian means trusting that they will be more like Jesus tomorrow than they are today. I don’t want to live with a heart filled with cynicism and fear. I simply don’t know how to love others when my heart filled with cynicism and fear.

As elders we should have done more to communicate with you. By not saying more clearly that much of what you read online is slander, half-truths and gossip we left you in a place of wondering what is true. When this recent storm began a few months ago I looked into all of it because I had a responsibility to as an elder. What I have consistently seen is a pattern of repentance when sin was present, growth when errors were made, and patience when the accusations were false.

Let me say very clearly that Pastor Mark, Pastor Dave and Pastor Sutton are honorable and trustworthy men. I count it a privilege to serve with them not because I have anything to gain, simply because it is true.

I am asking all of us to choose to live in a way that is joyful and trusting vs cynical and fearful.
Meanwhile, others will remind us of our sin, but we will worship the Savior who died for our sins. Others will try to turn us against one other, but we will worship Jesus who gave His life so we could be one with Him. Others will try to keep us living in a past from which we have repented and changed, but we will worship Jesus who makes it possible for us to have a new beginning.”

69 comments on “Learn to Discern: Mars Hill Peaceful Protest and Letter to Mars Hill Members by Pastor Matt Rogers

  1. When lots of people that used to drink the Koo-Aid are concerned enough to make their concerns public, I think it is best to listen to why you may want to stop drinking the Kool-Aid yourself.

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  2. Sounds like a guy that is just what he said “we can’t choose to be “, scared. I hope they picket that church a couple of times a month. The press will eat that up and exposure will come to the door step of the Mars Mill pervert. Having picketed an abusive church before myself, I can tell you they become unglued and make huge public mistakes. They are used to intimidating people with ” church discipline” and all sorts of embarrassment of being publicly addressed by the pulpit etc. Once they are up against a group of people who could care less about that they are really just like little children on a playground calling someone a dumb dumb head.

    On our picket they wrongly assumed we would be intimidated by the police showing up in force. Aproximatly a dozen cruisers rolled up with lights flashing. We had a group laugh when some young idiot cop tried telling us it’s illegal to do what we are doing. When told he is crazy but go ahead in arrest us as some of us could use the money from a lawsuit against the county, he tried the sympathy route. ” How would you like it if someone picketed your church?” One person replied this is my church, I have been going here 25 years. He just said a sargent is in route and walked back to his car. That sgt was actually pretty dumb too. Said we can’t stand on a side walk with signs if there are more than three of us. I told him he needs to go back to the academy for retraining in constitutional law. Than came the final threat, if we go on their property or storm the sanctuary to disturb the service we would be arrested. Another group laugh, and they all drove off to the local Donut shop no doubt. We picketed 23 times over a year and after about a dozen they had a special business meeting of the church to address the picketers. During the meeting the pastor made statements that were proven to be lies and aproximatly 15% of the church left. Literally people drove over just to thank us for opening their eyes. The church administration is still blaming us for their financial problems five years latter, LOL

    I think a website HOW to picket your church.com is long over due. A place with all the legal issues you need to know, and info on where to get the low cost banners and signs, making them is not worth the savings in $$$.

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  3. I think a website HOW to picket your church.com is long over due. A place with all the legal issues you need to know, and info on where to get the low cost banners and signs, making them is not worth the savings in $$$.

    Excellent idea, Scott.

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  4. Oh yes, his “letter” is very typical. note the insult about trash. A “bit” of trash. It could have been anything that flew by and landed there. See how the standards are so much higher for those who dare to dissent? They are people who leave trash. I honestly doubt that. The building looks to be in a downtownish area where trash is a constant problem.

    Perfection is the standard for the protestors, yet they are chided for expecting standards from leaders. They are accused of not “trusting’ those with the Holy Spirit. (Not how he assumes the Holy Spirit is dwelling in the leaders and not how the leaders are positioned as “one of them”.) So they want the authority but to be treated with kid gloves.

    Note the false piety. “We were worshiping Jesus”. No, you were worshiping Mark.

    Reminds me so much of the stuff coming out of SGM during the scandalabra.

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  5. Well the picket was picked up by the Seattle Times.

    The church has released a Marky Mark statement where he said they have hired an outside agency to help mediate the issues with a few members and former staff to WORK TOWARDS RECONCILIATION. He was quick to add BUT we are not walking in there for discussion without NON-Disclosure agreements so everyone feels comfortable talking. Everyone ? You mean the people that are afraid of being sued since former members have retained attorneys ? These people really do all use the same play book.

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  6. Anyone who signs ANYTHING to talk to MH/Driscoll is a fool. But my guess is many will. There are some who actually think all this is going to make Mark change.

    Instead, Tell him to man up. They have every right to discuss their first hand experiences.

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  7. “This past Sunday outside our building about 60 professing (as in falsely-self-identifying) Christians led a protest (the lawless rabble is always protesting), left a bit of trash (they were born in barns), and slandered good men (oooh, the unforgivable sin, all thought stop, all thought stop). Inside the building our church family (We are the Ones!, We are the Ones!) worshipped [sic] Jesus (no need to feed the starving, clothe the naked, take care of orphans, or DEFEND THE OPPRESSED). Let that image (it’s all about appearances) be what defines us (never mind who we actually are). Others will cast aspersions (no need to actually address the issues, questions not allowed, do not talk), but we will worship Jesus (we are holy, we are so holy, they are so not).”

    Then a few sentence later the letter says, “Choosing fear would lead us to attack those who are attacking us.” But wait! But Wait! Attacking their detractors is exactly what they are doing. Methinks they have unwittingly admitted they are afraid.

    Really, I strongly suspect that every accusation leveled by this letter is an instance of projection. They are simply assuming that those outside the walls are as those inside the walls, and every charge leveled is but an instance of self-indictment. IMO.

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  8. “They are simply assuming that those outside the walls are as those inside the walls,…”

    Yes, the group think does not work well outside the bubble. It is something many in evangelicalism cannot seem to fathom.

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  9. The protestors are not Christians. We are. We are leaders and we said so. If we say it, it is true because we are the leaders. And I have just behaved loving toward the non-Christians out there, as must you. Love love love.

    There. That settles that.

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  10. I saw this earlier today and was saddened. It’s classic manipulation – very subtle words that say so much.

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  11. Kathi – I don’t even think it’s subtle. It’s the same pattern of blatant hypocrisy, sanctimony and phony “sweet talk” we consistently heard from the ex-SGM leaders at my ex-church when dealing with any opposition to their “inspired” and self-proclaimed authority. Behind closed doors, of course, when there was no more reason to be “sweet”, they were perfect sociopathic brutes.

    Rest assured the MHC leaders are terrified of losing hold of their prestige, control, healthy salaries, and perhaps freedom–don’t think that with the latest revelations regarding misappropriation of donations in the so-called global fund, that criminal charges are beyond the realm of possibility.

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  12. **FROM THE MODERATORS: We have added this note to explain the context of this comment. A few days ago, Margaret contacted brad/futuristguy, who helps Julie Anne with Spiritual Sounding Board. She asked his permission to post a link to his summary of analysis on the Mars Hill Church situation. It had originally appeared on a friend’s Facebook page, and then he’d cut-and-pasted it on this blog. He also gave her a link to another analysis piece he’d posted as a comment on The Wartburg Watch. Margaret has his permission to quote his message to her, and share the links on discerning about Mars Hill and its leaders. brad/futuristguy’s comments elsewhere may help shed light on the thread here.**

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    Hi Margaret,

    Thanks for asking permission. That’s kind of you … and yes, feel free to link to the Spiritual Sounding Board comment:

    https://spiritualsoundingboard.com/2014/07/31/sound-off-on-spiritual-sounding-board/comment-page-1/#comment-133582

    I just double checked — my friend’s Facebook page is not one of those everything-is-public or otherwise I’d suggest linking to her FB page to make things easier.

    You may also be interested in a comment I posted earlier today on The Wartburg Watch. It’s in response to two guys “John” and “NotJohn” who sound pretty much alike and basically say anyone who expresses an *opinion* about Mark Driscoll is “bearing false witness.” I wrote this piece in part to externalize some of the critical thinking process involved in discernment and to suggest why what Mark Driscoll wrote 14 years ago *is very relevant* in the big picture of things. Feel free to link to that if you’d like too. I’ll not be offended if you don’t. Perhaps the main thing of interest is the start of the second sentence: “I first heard Mark Driscoll preach in person in 1997 …” Yup. heard him at the National GenX Forum, the second national-level conference sponsored by Leadership Network and their Young Leaders Network. So, some of the data points I’m working with go way far back and there were people who were picking up some potentially bad vibes even back then.

    http://thewartburgwatch.com/2014/08/01/mark-driscoll-and-mars-hill-sadness-depravity-courage-and-a-resignation/#comment-152700

    Brad [futuristguy]

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  13. Let me say very clearly that Pastor Mark, Pastor Dave and Pastor Sutton are honorable and trustworthy men.

    It’s the responsibility of those men to prove their honesty and trustworthiness. In the case of Mark Driscoll, and perhaps the others as well, I suspect there are many who have their doubts.

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  14. #1: The guy does not understand the legal definition of slander.

    #2: The talk about fear is a manipulative tactic. He is presuming that people are responding in fear. It sounds good and it appeals to emotions.

    #3: “What I have consistently seen is a pattern of repentance when sin was present” – – What repentance is he talking about? Notice the blameshifting – he first says they didn’t communicate well, but then blames the slanderers and gossipers.

    #4 “I am asking all of us to choose to live in a way that is joyful and trusting vs cynical and fearful.” So, he’s telling everyone to have blind trust in the leaders. In other words, don’t think. Cults are born that way.

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  15. They wish to be trusted, no questions asked. They are attempting to censor Paul’s admonition to test everything. 1 Th 5:21. I have learned the hard way that it is not a good idea to trust somebody who keeps saying “trust me.”

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  16. Amen, Gary. Anyone who says, “trust me” without there being a reason for me to trust them, I will not walk, but run to the nearest exit. Anyone who will not answer questions when you have them is not to be trusted. Even then there answers need to be tested.

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  17. Pingback: LINKS! | PhoenixPreacher

  18. I could not read it all the way through. I read the first paragraph, and then the first sentence of each following paragraph. It sounds just like the messages that come out of the church we left. “We’re Right and anyone who disagrees with us is Wrong.” The blatant manipulation in the Mars Hill response made me physically ill.

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  19. His letter is one of the most ungracious responses I could imagine, and the more so because it is couched in churchy terms rather than laced with profanity and blatant threats.

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  20. His letter is one of the most ungracious responses I could imagine, and the more so because it is couched in churchy terms rather than laced with profanity and blatant threats.

    Tim, you are exactly right, and that is why this letter is so dangerous, because a pastor is supposed to use churchy terms, and so he makes it “legitimate” with those churchy terms, when it is nothing but a ploy of emotional manipulation. I repeat – this is how cults are made – when people tell you to trust them implicitly and imply that thinking for yourself is not good.

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  21. Julie Anne, I read it through all the way but really I read all I needed to as soon as I got to “professing Christians.” Everything else was extraneous as far as I’m concerned.

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  22. I guess choosing love does not preclude them from calling the cops?

    “Trust is a choice.” It is also earned, and easily lost. And one of my favorites…

    “Choosing fear leads to second guessing and distrusting the statements of our leaders.”

    Well. let’s see now…

    “What I have consistently seen is a pattern of repentance when sin was present, growth when errors were made, and patience when the accusations were false.”
    “Others will try to keep us living in a past from which we have repented and changed, but we will worship Jesus who makes it possible for us to have a new beginning.”

    There seems to be a defacto admission that… things were going on that ought not to have been, but we’ve repented and changed now (repeatedly), so you should believe everything we tell you and just ignore the detractors. The Spirit will bring repentance, after all (without the agency of any other Christians involved).

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  23. I’ve been trying to think what one word best describes the tone of this letter. As I was driving down the highway this afternoon, it occurred to me that the tone is quite reminiscent of the tone I observed being used by white racists in the civil rights era when comparing the (supposed) relative virtues of whites and blacks. The term to describe this tone is “sanctimonious.” Kudos to Law Prof (8/4 @ 7:12 PM) for applying the word “sanctimony.”

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  24. Gary, I thought of this word:

    Supercilious:
    having or showing the proud and unpleasant attitude of people who think that they are better or more important than other people: coolly and patronizingly haughty

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  25. Pingback: Shocked! | Jessica Veldstra

  26. You guys, I’ve been working on JD Hall post and it’s really messing with my head. I thought I was going to posting simultaneously with Wartburg Watch, but I need to take a breather (BTW, go check out the great article Dee did.) I will get it done, but today, on the day that I took my daughter to the airport to go back to college, I’m cutting myself some slack. I will be covering a different slant. One that is obviously triggering me. Ugh. Spiritual abuse really sucks.

    Wartburg Watch article: http://thewartburgwatch.com/2014/08/05/jd-hall-and-friends-theological-thuggery-and-braxton-caners-suicide/

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  27. I hear you, JA. Just reading it did me in again and I probably should not have even commented. I am asounded at the folks still missing the point. It is doing my head in.

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  28. Julie Anne,

    JD Hall admitted on his blog (to me) that he repetitively reminds his congregation of their “unworthiness” multiple times every Sunday.

    These types of “Methodologies” is more Law and Sin Centered focusing more on “self” rather than Christ.

    He is able to support his Ideology through his aggressive and reckless form of Reformed Doctrine. Mark Driscoll uses his Doctrine to support his aggressiveness.

    Their abusive tactics may very well fit an un-biblical and bully like personality while hiding behind scriptures to authenticate their behavior.

    They are able to pull it off simply by proclaiming their “Methodology” as practicing “Truth”.

    I told JD that he must be staying within the perimeters of TULIP and by proclaiming repetitively reminding his church of how unworthy they were, that he is Spiritually Abusing his Congregation. He gave no response after I questioned his tactics. (who knows maybe I jarred something inside him).

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  29. Julie Anne,

    I’ve suggested to him that his methods comes across as predatory and abusive lacking love.

    He has changed his format on his blog for those who wish to comment or question or seek clarification of his tactics, which is why I stopped challenging him.

    My wife and I are very upset with the tragedy that may have been stimulated through cyber-bullying.

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  30. You can view photos of the Mars Hill protest _Here_ (Facebook. I don’t think you have to be logged in to FB to view).

    If you click the photos and cycle through, you can see where the Mars Hill church put out coffee on a table with a sign reading, “We Love You. Enjoy Some Free Refreshments.”

    I liked the comment from one guy in the thread who said, “As if free coffee can make up for ten plus years of abuse by that church”

    Knowing what I know about that church, the coffee gesture came off wrong. Maybe it was sincere, but it either seemed to be a “blow us” type gesture, or they were trying to buy the protesters off. Maybe it was sincere, but I’m just too jaded and cynical.

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  31. Re Mark on JD, “JD Hall admitted on his blog (to me) that he repetitively reminds his congregation of their “unworthiness” multiple times every Sunday.”

    What bogus theology. If God did not feel that humanity was worthy (had value, etc), he would not have sent his Son to die on the cross, and the Son (who is also God) would’ve refused.

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  32. Daisy tells us there was a sign, “We Love You. Enjoy Some Free Refreshments.” Refreshments with no sign might have been a nice gesture but no, they had to engage in moral preening. Or maybe it was sarcasm, intended for media consumption. Our maybe they thought to be heaping fiery coals on their adversaries’ heads. Or, likely it was all of the above all at once.

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  33. If a man is constantly reminding his wife of her “unworthiness” we call it spouse abuse. In reality it is hatred and is the moral equivalent of murder. 1 John 3:15. How can it be any different when a preacher does the same thing to his congregants?

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  34. JA, I am not at all sure how you and others keep up with everything that is on your plate. You have to be a good juggler.

    All forms of abuse are horrible, but grown men calling themselves “Men of God” choosing a boy as their victim is criminal.

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  35. They cannot put out a sign saying “we love you” with coffee and then say “professing Christians…slandered good men” in the next breath. In this case, words speak louder than actions.

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  36. Daisy,

    If God did not feel that humanity was worthy (had value, etc), he would not have sent his Son to die on the cross, and the Son (who is also God) would’ve refused.

    We should rejoice in God making us worthy through the Son, Jesus. We should not be told or believe that we are lowly worms. When man was created He said it was very, very good. Why these bozos don’t remember that part of scripture is beyond me. They don’t choose the good news. They would prefer their membership to be in subjection to them.

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  37. missdaisyflower,

    You are correct it is bogus.

    These guys embrace a Law and Sin Centered Ministries rather than Christ Centered. Repetitively centering on individual worthiness puts the focus on “Self” and “Works”.

    In his May 27 “Bartholomew” post, (where JD admitted to reminding his congregation of their unworthiness, I explained to JD and Rhology, that with JD;s “methodology” his congregation would never lose sight of their unworthiness even if he reminded them once a month.

    Furthermore I explained the material he used must be strictly TULIP and that centering his ministry on “worthiness” is an unbalanced use of scriptures which borders Spiritual Abuse.

    JD never responded after I challenged his Methodology.

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  38. Gary,

    I made the same comparison, except I suggested a Pastor is like a parent and if a parent repetitively and constantly reminded their kids of their unworthiness (rather than correction), they aren’t going to feel festive.

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  39. JA, Gary W, Mark, thank you. Keep it up. I read the term “worm theology” here and other places for a long time before I understood it. Since leaving our former church I realized (especially with clarifications like the ones in the comments above, about the people in a church being repeatedly reminded of their unworthiness) that this was a common theme in our worship services.

    If it had not been for the courage, determination, and grace shown by survivors, we might still be dying in that church.

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  40. (Brenda R, you too, and Lydia, and… everyone. I didn’t mean to single out merely three people just now.)

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  41. Missdaisyflower said: “What bogus theology. If God did not feel that humanity was worthy (had value, etc), he would not have sent his Son to die on the cross, and the Son (who is also God) would’ve refused.”
    They might well answer,:
    “YOUR theology is bogus. If God did not love THE ELECT he would not have sent his Son to die on the cross. The rest of humanity can go to hell, for all He cares. My theology is correct, proving I’m elect. Your theology is bogus, proving you’re reprobate. Repent! Oh, that’s right– you CAN’T!”

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  42. refugee,
    I did not feel slighted in the least. The term I am still not quite sure of is being called a “None”. When y0u say that you might still be dying in that church. That is so NOT what a church should be. A church should be light producing, giving life to those who come in contact. It breaks my heart what the church has come to. Even worse, God is not pleased or glorified.

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  43. @DaveAA:

    They might well answer,:
    “YOUR theology is bogus. If God did not love THE ELECT he would not have sent his Son to die on the cross. The rest of humanity can go to hell, for all He cares. My theology is correct, proving I’m elect. Your theology is bogus, proving you’re reprobate. Repent! Oh, that’s right– you CAN’T!”

    As the Elect One whips his coup stick across your face.

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  44. And switching imagery from Plains tribes to George Orwell (now that’s a shift without a clutch), here are some relevant quotes from Comrade O’Brian of the Inner Party (Big Brother’s Elect) strung together:

    “The only goal of Power is POWER. And POWER consists of inflicting suffering among the Powerless. The Future? A boot stamping on a face. FOREVER. Where the only laughter is the cackle of triumph over the body of a destroyed enemy.”

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  45. @BrendaR:

    All forms of abuse are horrible, but grown men calling themselves “Men of God” choosing a boy as their victim is criminal.

    There is only one way to describe this, alluded to in my previous two comments:
    These Guys are EVIL.

    And from the Third(?) Commandment on, doesn’t God in Torah, Tanakh, and NT denounce and curse (literally) those who do Evil and invoke God as justification? As in God saying “You do your own dirty work — keep my Name out of it!”

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  46. HUG,
    The 3rd would be the one. He is not pleased with the use of His Name being tossed about so freely while the sheep are being trampled on.

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  47. Back on topic, I’ve made a little comparison between Mr Rogers’ letter and Mr Driscoll’s statement. I conclude that Driscoll has indeed changed. He would no longer put out something PERSONALLY saying “All criticism is slander! You vill trust me!” He has underlings to do that.
    Both contain apologies, of a sort.
    Rogers:
    “As elders we should have done more to communicate with you. By not saying more clearly that much of what you read online is slander, half-truths and gossip we left you in a place of wondering what is true.”
    IE– We’re really sorry you won’t stay off the damned internet and just listen to us!
    Driscoll:
    “I was wrong to respond to people the way I did, using the language I used, and I am sorry for it and remain embarrassed by it.”
    IE– I’m really sorry for the STYLE I used back then, but I still totally believe the SUBSTANCE.
    Speaking of Driscoll’s apology, did anyone read Jonathan Merritt’s “acceptance”?http://jonathanmerritt.religionnews.com/2014/08/04/accept-mark-driscolls-apology/?utm_content=buffer7d877&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer
    I believe it has some problems.
    Just one, “His apology was predictably rejected by the growing gaggle of Driscoll critics, a group that has become evermore vampirical in their thirst for Driscoll’s blood.”
    Really? Some examples of blood-thirsty critics would have been in order, at least.
    Most of his critics just want him to resign. It wouldn’t be fatal! Might even do him some good!

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  48. Dave AA,

    You have no way of knowing who the “Elect” are of those that profess the Gospel and those that will eventually profess the Gospel.

    I will tell you if anyone places higher value on a Works, Sin and Law Centered Ministry above a Christ Centered Ministry they should be more worried about their own eternal destiny rather than judging someone else’s.

    The “unloving” judgments you displayed to Daisy is comparable to the Pharisee’s (who portrayed themselves as the “elect”) holding the Sinner and Tax Collector in bondage and then rebuking Christ for ministering to them.

    You may need to read 1 Corinthians 13:13. Your judgments don’t even fit in the “tough love” category. If you have “love” it isn’t recognizable and you may have to re-evaluate the “Methodology” you are embracing as well the Doctrine you are clinging to, your thoughts give me the impression the church you are attending practices an unbalanced interpretation of scriptures which stimulates Spiritual Abuse.

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  49. Julie and Dave AA,

    I may have mis-interpretted a response Dave AA made to Daisy and if that is the case, my heart felt apology to Dave AA and to SSB. (and Daisy)

    If Dave AA wasn’t judging Daisy please delete my 9:53 a.m. statement.

    Like

  50. This was in our reading today (Proverbs 6):
    12 A worthless person, a wicked man,
    goes about with crooked speech,
    13 winks with his eyes, signals with his feet,
    points with his finger,
    14 with perverted heart devises evil,
    continually sowing discord;
    15 therefore calamity will come upon him suddenly;
    in a moment he will be broken beyond healing.
    (ESV, courtesy of Bible Gateway)

    We used to read through Proverbs every month, a chapter a day corresponding to the date. I never before applied this section (in my mind) to someone within a church. But today it struck me that it could apply to any of the “showman” type teachers and elders who are putting themselves forward as having the exclusive truth.

    I still don’t think our ex-pastor and elders are deliberately evil in their intent. I think they are very sincere, that they really think they are doing what is best for that church and their families and the people in that church. I am coming to realize that sincerity does not excuse manipulation (whether conscious or not, and I’m not excusing them and saying it was unconscious on their part, for I truly cannot see men’s hearts and motivations, only the outward appearance) and abuse.

    However, that said, they are set on their course. Many people who left before us, tried to express similar concerns to ours, and were dismissed.

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  51. Dave A A,

    Most of his critics just want him to resign. It wouldn’t be fatal! Might even do him some good!

    At least him resigning would be a sign of humility. I do believe their is a mile wide gap between apology and repentance. An apology could mean “I’m sorry, until the next time I get caught.” Driscoll needs to repent and reprogram the warp in the record playing in his head.

    Like

  52. Mark– guess I did a good job. No need to,apologize– you may just have missed the word “they”.
    Seriously, MacArthurites wouldn’t actually come out and SAY “I’m elect– you’re not– go to hell” would they?

    Like

  53. Dave AA,

    I did miss “they”.

    Those that have endured Spiritual Abuse are at the hands of those that lack love and in many cases are from those that embrace a reckless interpretation of scripture.

    I’m realizing not all Abusers are Neo-Calvinist but I’m finding many Abusers (Calvinist and non-Calvinist) have certain qualities that is surrounded by Works and the Law above Christ. They practice elite Pharisee type behaviors not really understanding the true definition of who the “Elect” really are. .

    Then there are Abusers who stray from scriptures that simply enjoy the control and indoctrination of their congregation or are simply looking for a fight to pick.

    Like

  54. The boy was JUST A CHILD! What’s wrong with them? I guess that JD Hall must be so used to being a pastor he CAN’T stop trying to shepherd and parent other people’s children!

    Keep your sticky beak out of it JD! You’re no pastor! You’re a reprehensible bully out to control others! Your radio program on purity balls was so impure! It was SICK. GET A LIFE, JD, AND STOP ABUSING OTHERS IN GOD’S NAME.

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  55. @Mark:

    Then there are Abusers who stray from scriptures that simply enjoy the control and indoctrination of their congregation or are simply looking for a fight to pick.

    When I’m looking for a fight, I find a game group and start rolling the funny dice. Maybe these guys should do the same. Much less collateral damage among those who become their RL Orcs and Red Shirts.

    Like

  56. @BrendaR:

    HUG,
    The 3rd would be the one. He is not pleased with the use of His Name being tossed about so freely while the sheep are being trampled on.

    Then how convenient that the 3rd has been redefined to be against cussing and cussing alone, eh, My Dear Wormwood?

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  57. HUG,
    The 3rd would be the one. He is not pleased with the use of His Name being tossed about so freely while the sheep are being trampled on.

    Then how convenient that the 3rd has been redefined to be against cussing and cussing alone, eh, My Dear Wormwood?

    I didn’t get the memo on that change. If folks are going to make changes on the meaning of scripture, you’d think they would send a memo.

    Like

  58. Yesterday, Acts29 Board removed both Mark Hill and Mars Hill from their group.

    Last night Warren Throckmorton posted a response from Mars Hill re: the move by Acts 29 to remove Mark Driscoll/Mars hill from Acts 29.

    Here is part of the sickening note from the Mars Hill BOAA:

    Be assured of this, the formal charges that were filed were serious, were taken seriously and were not dismissed by the board lightly. There is clear evidence that the attitudes and behaviors attributed to Mark in the charges are not a part and have not been a part of Mark’s life for some time now.
    Our board’s decision is final regarding these charges, although will no doubt continue to be played out in the courts of public opinion. Again, I am deeply saddened that the A29 board would make such a decisive and divisive conclusion without speaking directly to the board or Mark prior to their public announcement.

    Full article here: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/warrenthrockmorton/2014/08/08/mars-hill-church-board-reacts-to-being-removed-from-acts-29-network/?utm_content=bufferdaea8&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

    Like

  59. “Again, I am deeply saddened that the A29 board would make such a decisive and divisive conclusion without speaking directly to the board or Mark prior to their public announcement.”

    Awwww, gee. Didn’t they get their widdle feelings hurt at being thrown under the bus? They can sure dish it out, though.

    Like

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