In his recent article, “Mark Driscoll’s Problems, and Ours,” Carl R. Trueman pens a thoughtful synopsis of the crisis in church leadership in the Reformed movement as seen through the lens of Mark Driscoll’s latest faux pas — a lesson applicable, of course, to other Christian movements and churches.
Carl R. Trueman is Paul Woolley Professor of Church History at Westminster Theological Seminary. The article is from the First Things website. Here is my favorite paragraph:
“Mark Driscoll is one person, a uniquely talented individual. Yet he is also a function of structural problems within the new Reformed movement itself. Despite its distinct and in many ways sophisticated theology, the ‘young, restless, and reformed’ movement has always been in some respects simply the latest manifestation of the weakest aspects of American Evangelicalism. It was, and is, a movement built on the power of a self-selected band of dynamic personalities, wonderful communicators, and talented preachers who have been marketed in a very attractive manner. Those things can all be great goods but when there is no real accountability involved, when financial arrangements are opaque in the extreme, and when personalities start to supplant the message, serious problems are never far away.”
For more of this article, click here.
My first exposure to Driscoll was through a local church plant built by his planting program. I even have the workbook somewhere still from the first phase of the local group. They called themselves “Journey the Way” of which most plant sites have names similar.
After going through a couple sessions in the church plant planning group I began to notice warning signs in my heart. This is where I took a step back and examined Mark’s leadership and general characteristics. Needless to say, I didnt return to help finish the plant. I did however express my concerns to the leader at the time.
The main issue I have is rooted in the Calvinistic nature of his teachings (especially the predestination doctrines.) all of which are misapplications of what Calvin originally meant, as well as what scripture has to say. As far as my spirit can tell.
From that time till now I removed myself from traditional church groups as I would only see major issues on the whole. Christianity today is in a state of flux. I for one am now working to help others see Jesus as he really is and challenge everyone to rethink how they view our role in life as disciples of Jesus.
Interesting to look back at your related post, “The Myth of Biblical Manhood”, wherein four persons are depicted in a meeting, Mark Driscoll, John Piper, Doug Phillips, and John Eldredge. Two of the four, Driscoll and Phillips, have now been exposed in scandals, albeit of different types. More to come, I wonder?