Why you should not attend Mark Driscoll’s church
January 21, 2013 17 Comments
Today, Mark Driscoll tweeted this. It says, “Praying for our president, who today will place his hand on a Bible he does not believe to take an oath to a God he likely does not know.” Of course, President Obama is a confessing Christian.
Yesterday, my minister, Ben Ries, preached a sermon on The Parable of the Wheat and the Weeds. The text of the parable says this,
Jesus put before them another parable: “The Kingdom of heaven may be compared to someone who sowed good seed in his field; but while everybody was asleep, an enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and then went away. So when the plants came up and bore grain, then the weeds appeared as well. And the slaves of the householder came and said to him, ‘Master, did you not saw good seed in your field? Where, then, did these weeds come from?’ He answered, ‘An enemy has done this.’ The lsaves said to him, ‘Then do you want us to go and gather them?’ But he replied, ‘No; for in gathering the weeds you would uproot the wheat along with them. Let both of them grow together until the harvest; and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, Collect the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.”
A few verses later, in response to a question from his disciples, Jesus explains the parable and informs them that “the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are angels.”
Ben went on to explain that we are called to be the wheat and not the reapers. He highlighted Jesus’s point that we are incapable of discerning the wheat from the weeds and, therefore, that we shouldn’t try to do so because in doing so we will inevitably pull up both wheat and weeds.
I wish that Driscoll had read this teaching of Jesus before tweeting that last message. And the tweet is especially damning considering that it came on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. It is damning because King, facing people who denied him justice and committed violence against him because of the color of his skin and his commitment to God’s righteousness, never accused the most virulent racists of being weeds. He never said that those who persecuted him, often in the name of Jesus, were weeds. He never had the hubris to think that God’s grace wouldn’t extend to his political enemies or that he had the divine wisdom to discern the weeds from the wheat.
No. King lived as if all were beloved and saved by God. King, in other words, lived this teaching of Jesus. Driscoll, on the other hand, clearly lacks this spiritual wisdom. He has put himself in the place of angels – in the place of God? – and therefore has proven himself unfit to be the spiritual leader of other people.
My suggestion is that you do not attend a Mars Hill church because you will find yourself being led by someone spiritually and theologically unfit for such leadership. Instead, I recommend going somewhere where you will hear sermons like the one I heard yesterday.
Grace and peace.