Mark Driscoll: The Skinny


I have had a little email correspondence with Mark Driscoll of Mars Hill Church and have encouraged him to put forward an apology. I don’t think he realizes the gravity of this situation but am hoping a few others [where are the Reformed folk???] might also share their thoughts with him. I am a little cautious of bringing too much attention to it with this post but I know a lot of you are talking about it and blogging about it . .. . so . .. . here’s the skinny on the Mark Driscoll episode which has become more complex since my post entitled “The fat lazy blog-post that has let itself go“.

The Skinny:

Mark’s original post which got things started.

– Christian blogs are tame compared to Dan Savage and others in the secular press. Mind your step . . .

– Protest by EndFundamentialism rescheduled for Dec 3. Protesters are using the Misogynist label. Mark already registers in a Google search for misogyonist, but Bob Hyatt argues that Mark is NOT a misogynist nor a sexist but he is a chauvinist.

Rose Madrid-Swetman has posted an Open Letter To Mark Driscoll. She sent it to me yesterday in an email. Pretty fair and well written. Those quotes in the open letter from Scot McKnight on my blog comments can be found here.

– I think Bob Hyatt is the most balanced voice in this whole episode. Bob is not a Driscoll fan and yet he is representing both sides in a fair manner. And most importantly, he agrees with me about the protest being a bad idea, so he must be right. Read Bob’s Latest on the Driscoll and Latest Part II. [update] His latest is “why cant we all just get along” and he publishes the open letter.

– The Salon article was exaggerated – according to a comment by Judy who also features in the article.

– Iggy asks whether Calvinism is sexist. Interesting question. Where is John Piper when you need him?

– If you want to give Bob a break, Scot McKnight is fielding questions and comments and, of course, so is Rose.

What do I think?

I like Mark and he has been a good friend but I think he has watched Fight Club once too often.

Fight Club 003


Mark Driscoll Responds

The fat lazy blog-post that has let itself go.

Is the Blogosphere Ready for Mark Driscoll?

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Andrew Jones launched his first internet space in 1997 and has been teaching on related issues for the past 20 years. He travels all the time but lives between Wellington, San Francisco and a hobbit home in Prague.


  • joe says:

    Oh dear, I think someone is going to have to invoke Godwin’s law soon.
    Given that Mr Driscoll’s views appear to be theological more than anything else, I don’t really see that calling him names is achieving anything at all.
    For future reference, if someone talks nonsense, look the other way. It isn’t helping to have all the extra publicity IMO, not that what I say matters one iota.

  • Women in Ministry Revisited

    Ive had some various posts and links concerning the issue of women in ministry. Today I came across a letter posted by Scot McKnight on his blog from a Seattle pastor related to recent posts by Mark Driscoll on the issue (here, here, and here)….

  • Rhett Smith says:

    Good post. Thanks for being so level headed in the situation. Imagine the progress that might be made if we all could cross some theological lines and find some common ground.

  • level headed – yes. but not totally objective because, as i say, mark is my friend.
    lets all find some common ground and some things to learn in this situation.

  • josh says:

    look at you. all mature and diplomatic like. very nice. very nice indeed.

  • gareth says:

    ummm I have to admit to finding it very difficult to be level headed when I popped over to marks blog.
    It seems every other post is sexist and homophobic in the extreme. Filing the election of a female archbishop in the ECUSA under ‘bad theology’ made my blood simmer!
    Skinny, maybe you should invite him over to orkney, and see if you can take him from boiling point on the gender stuff to maybe a nice simmer whilst he seriously thinks it over – am sure a good ol’ pizza party would do it 🙂

  • ed c says:

    Thanks for bringing this up Andrew. I have been batting scripture around in my spirit about this issue.
    How do we classify Mark’s comments? Are we to treat him as a wayward brother? Are we to tolerate him while not affirming his views?
    How you classify Mark’s views on women, determines your next step. And though we can’t find everything in the Bible, I’m not so sure a protest is a good reaction wherever you land on his status.
    If he’s completely out to lunch and wayward from orthodoxy, then the command is to disassociate from him. If he’s a brother who has a different view (even if we’re pretty sure it is wrong), we need to work it out no matter how painful the process is.
    And even so, can we really expect to change Mark Driscoll or his church through a protest? Will that bring unity to the body? It may send a message to others, but even so, that may be the wrong message (i.e. we’re ticked off at this “insert label” jerk and are calling him out on his lousy theology.”)
    Lastly, a quick story to share where I’m coming from: At the wedding of some friends the service focused on the dominance of the male and the secondary role of the woman. My wife sobbed for a long time after that service and said, “Are women just second-rate junk that God created?” It pains me immensely that women have been overlooked, degraded, and dishonored by men in the name of being “Biblical.” There has been a lot of damage done and the healing process is going to be really difficult. I for one am committed to an openness toward any way the Lord wants to bring women into ministry or any other function of the church.
    There will always be a Driscoll somewhere that we’ll disagree with, sometimes vehemently. But if he is not a false brother, then we only have one course available for the church: call him on it, challenge him, dialogue, but be careful to preserve the unity of the church, even if he isn’t.

  • chad says:

    I know that others have said it, but thanks for the amount of grace that you put into this post. And thanks for doing all the linking for the information regarding this issue

  • ellie says:

    But there is no true peace and no true unity, without justice. the voices of oppressed people throughout history have been squashed repeatedly by those who call for patience, grace and unity in all circumstances. And at some point those calls become oppressive too – especially when it is always the oppressed person or group who has to show repeated grace, to give up ground. and that’s definitely not the gospel.
    Let’s make sure this isn’t one of those times.

  • Mike Morrell says:

    Yeah, I have to chime in with many of the voices here that I’m mad at Mark too. But before I leap too deeply into righteous indignation, I have to realize two things: A.) I have some messed up views and life-actions myself; and B.) He honestly believes he is expressing fidelity to God and God’s revealed will. Those are always the most dangerous ones. : )
    To that end, I have a specific antidote (Andrew, I just emailed you more info on this): The Spring-Autumn 2003 Edition of the Searching Together journal. It’s 50 Scipture-soaked pages of conservative Reformed rage against the sexist maching, demonstrating conclusively that our sisters in Christ have every right and privilage to function as equals in the Church and Kingdom. What’s remarkable about this particular treatment (it’s not rage-filled; in fact its very gracious) is how Bible-based it is. It speaks a language that many of us in the emerging conversation would do well to (re)learn, especially those of us who have well-meaning fundamentalist-leaning friends who like to subjugate women in the name of God. So…buy it and read it! It’s well worth it.

  • Scott says:

    Misogynist? Sexist? Chauvinist? Yep… and an asshole, too. Geesh, is this Driscoll guy really a “leader” in the emerging movement. Sounds like another talking head to me. The Who summed it up, “meet the new boss, same as the old boss.” Maybe when the Mars Hill elders meet they’ll give Driscoll the pink slip and just for fun hire a woman to replace him.

  • spamthewunderdog says:

    I am a supporter by and large of Mark and what he has done at Mars Hill. At the same time, some of his theology and rhetoric really piss me off. I am usually very put off by his mysogynist ways and his very blunt way of saying things that, to me, serve nothing but to tick people off and draw sides.
    Having said that, here is what ticks me off the most. Everybody is talking about this one thing in reference to his post and are neglecting the fact that that is not all that he said. I think people are latching onto the poor choice of language to make a point and make a scapegoat out of him, but are ignoring the fact that he said so much more in that post that gives context that goes beyond the words chosen.
    Mark did not, and I repeat, did not “blame” the wife for the pastor’s sin. He blamed the “relationship” they had that was not sexually free in its communication, and in its physical intimacy. Yes he chose some poor words to say it, and frankly put forth some of his deeply held biases…But we don’t hang people for poor word choices, or thoughts. We hang them for actions. And for all itents and purposes Mars Hill is one of the most accepting and open Churches in all of Evangelical Christianity, if not THE most accepting and open. I believe this happened because Mark is who he is without apologies…but with very very frequent repentance.
    Give him a break.

  • Paul says:

    As one of the instigators of the Dec 3 Stand Up For Justice Day, I must reiterate that our goal is to remove Mark his position of power to hurt women on a massive scale. That’s about it.
    I have yet to hear a reasonable answer as to why the public protest of very public and persistent comments degrading women is inappropriate.
    Because it makes Christians look bad? Heck, read Dan Savage again! The protest isn’t what he’s writing about. He’s seeing through the BS and calling Christians to account. He’s calling Mark Driscoll to account for demeaning women. He didn’t need me to see the bigotry in Driscoll’s words.
    Because Christians are supposed to be more loving? Aren’t we given divine permission after trying and trying and trying to just say, “Enough. You’re out of here.”?
    Please help me understand why a public protest is an unacceptable response to a grave and repeated and public injustice.

  • joe says:

    Public protest is not an unacceptable response to a grave and repeated and public injustice. Sometimes public protest is the only response to a grave and repeated and public injustice.
    But you have to pick your fights. You have to be sure you are not just flying off the handle. You have to calmly examine the alternatives.
    There are plenty of churches with leaders who believe this stuff. Are you going to picket every one? Or is Mark somehow special in that he needs special treatment?
    Believe me, I am an activist and I believe in causes that barely register on other peoples’ radar.
    Get someone he respects to sit him down and read him the riot act, yes. Write letters of protest to his church and his wider faith community, yes.
    But c’mon, there are bigger fish to fry than Mark Driscoll talking bollocks, surely.

  • Phil says:

    Paul: Your public protest is legal. But it’s gallingly hypocritical to use militant means to enforce your own very fundamentalist attack on Mark’s freedom to practice a brand of religion (that you won’t tolerate) among those who freely attend his church! Oh, sure, you’re not using physical force, but you are going to use any and every means to achieve those same ends. What are you going to have on your protest signs? “Intolerance must be silenced!” Uh, yeah. So much for Voltaire’s classic statement of true freedom: “I disagree with everything you say, but I will fight to the death for your right to say it.”
    I’ve been a Christian since high school. I’ve seen your types of forces take to the street when Christians take to the street at abortion clinics and the like. But your taking your fundamentalist anti-fundamentalist riots to the doorstep of a church (who’s only “crime” is speaking and believing differently from you) is a new breed of proactive anti-Christian persecution. “Anti-Christian?” you ask. Yes, because I don’t see you out protesting at mosques where women must be veiled and separated from the men. Oh no. It’s the Christians you’re after, and believe me, I see it.

  • Paul, it seems like an in-house discipline issue rather than something that should be a spectacle for the world.
    People against Fundamentalism, and correct me if i am wrong, seems to be a group with Christian values that are protesting misogyny in an isolated case – ie, Mark Driscoll. If they are really protesting fundamentalism, then would be targeting athestic fundamentalism (Dawkins), Islamic fundamentalism, etc and would not be using fundamentalist measures.

  • Bill says:

    I must reiterate that our goal is to remove Mark his position of power to hurt women on a massive scale.
    So let’s see if I understand this correctly: You are protesting Driscoll’s intolerance by showing your own intolerance of his viewpoint?
    That seems very hypocritical. You get upset when people don’t tolerate your view, but then you turn around and attempt to silence someone else’s view.
    I think you need to rethink this … or perhaps think about it for the first time. It doesn’t seem like much thought went into this.

  • Paul says:

    Andrew — unfortunately, this already is a spectacle for the world. People, like Dan Savage, are saying “About time you folk dealt with this guy!”
    If anyone would like to stop this protest, we set out very clear terms under which we’d call it off. Check out the website to see those conditions.
    Yes, many church leaders believe the same stuff as Mark. And some of those speak similiar rhetoric. But we do have to pick our battles. Mark is in my backyard. So a few of us are starting with him. If any of you would like to start local chapters of People Against Fundamentalism, give me a shout. We’re open to ending all fundamentalism.
    Here’s my next question to everyone here: what are you all here doing to prevent demeaning and degrading statements being made about women in your backyard?
    To Bill: Tolerance ends when injustice begins. Neither me nor others involved with this protest are “anything goes” kinda folk. Since the church hasn’t cleaned up its act and ejected this appalling pastor, someone needs to stand up for justice.
    And that’s who’s behind the protest.

  • joe says:

    I’m sorry, are you saying that you are from the same church denomination as Mr Driscoll?
    Otherwise, it sounds very much like a group of students I once heard about. They decided that one of the university chaplains was not christian enough and went to his house to ‘exorcise’ him.
    For your information, the way I prevent the airing of degrading statements is by ignoring them and ensuring my family is not in the firing line. Y’see, I respect the right of people to say things I don’t like – or even things I might find offensive. It is called living in a democracy.
    Someone shoot me, I’m defending a fundamentalist!

  • Paul
    what would it take to replace the protest with something that would accomplish your goals, or at least lead to a changed situation?
    Like, what if Mark was to issue a public apology.
    I dunno . .. do you have any ideas or is this protest going ahead no matter what?

  • Paul says:

    Andrew — After my last comment, I thought a bit more on my walk to work. From the little I’ve read on your blog, you seem like a level-headed, with-it sort of guy. You seem to understand the harm Driscoll is doing to himself, to the Christian church, and to women. You seem to have a long-standing personal relationship with him, and have seen his demeaning actions for a number of years.
    You have asked for a path other than protest. I’d love a different option too. But after listening–in my own living room at the house church my wife runs (!)–to the stories of multiple women verbally battered by Mark and Mars Hill, after seeing the greater church in Seattle do next to nothing, after seeing the broader Christian leadership in the U.S. look on with a wink & a nod, I really don’t see any other option.
    So, here’s my ask of you: How about you use your personal connection with him to gently explain to him how he is damaging women and the Christian cause. Ask him to publicly apologize for his degrading comments over the years. Ask him to step down from his column at the Seattle Times and from leadership in his church. Ask him to go off and get some serious help dealing with whatever struggles he is dealing with that cause him to denigrate women in his preaching, that cause him to make so many shocking and disgusting remarks.
    I can’t get Mark to talk with me; why would he listen to me? I have no real influence here. Do you think Mark is going to meet with Rose Madrid-Swetman, a woman who embodies everything he rants against (a woman pastor in an egalitarian marriage, plus more). Maybe he’ll meet with John Piper, but what good will come of that? Maybe a half-hearted, backhanded apology like Mark has provided so many times before. And Mark will continue on in the same fundamentalist vein.
    So, Andrew, how about it? If you want to chat more in detail & in private, you can reach me at paul @t endfundamentalism d0t 0rg.

  • Rosebud says:

    Spamdog, It is not that one comment that people have problems with. It is the other comments concerning women, too. Either he sees them as fat, lazy slobbish prudes or as seducing vixens who are out to get them.
    He would have done better to just give advice about how men can protect themselves and use some scripture instead of making blanket statements about women and relating how so many women have done amazingly brazen things to get his body in their beds.
    I don’t see either of these attitudes in scripture towards women. And when I do see them, Jesus rebuked the ones who held such attitudes. (Is a woman flirtatious because she is pretty and nice? Many think that if a pretty woman smiles at them, they are actually flirting with them and coming onto them)
    How about “MOST” of the pastors that he knows who do not have sexually free conversations and sexual “liberties” (what in the heck does that mean?) with their wives? I guess we could look at all the pastors that Mark knows and guess that most of them have lousy sex lives. I wonder how Piper feels about this statement? Is his wife included? Is he one the pastors? Did his wife let herself go? I wonder how many pastor’s wives are now wondering if their friend Mark is referring to them. Does Mrs. Piper measure up to his idea of a woman who has not let herself go?
    After all, Mark said it was MOST of the pastors he KNOWS.
    At the very least, he should be more precise in his language so no one is left wondering what the heck he means.

  • Helen says:

    Yes, Andrew, please do share your concerns with him as one friend to another.
    The secular blogs already have noted what Mark said – the world knows. And when Christians appear to let things like this go, those people in the world who care what Mark says either despise Christians for being cowards who won’t take a stand when they ought to, or decide that Christians all must agree with Mark and that’s why they aren’t saying anything.

  • I have already sent a few emails to Mark and he has responded to the first one. The last one asked for a public apology and he has not got back yet on that one.
    Seattle Times will probably enjoy the publicity – their very own Howard Stern.
    Marks church will still be Mark’s church. I cant see Mark stepping down nor do i see the need for it to happen.
    Apology? yes indeed.
    Public shaming? maybe . . if thats what it takes – dress him in pink and give him 39 lashes with a furry Prada handbag.
    but asking him to step down from his church is way overkill. dont you think?

  • Rosebud says:

    Andrew, I do think it is overkill. We all have things that we hold to be “true” that need to be challenged. We all have prejudice. I am constantly trying to weed it out of my vocabulary. I think I am not prejudice against certain people (ie., based on gender, color, homosexuals, etc) but sometimes I say things and I realize I have a long way to go. My children will point some of the things out to me and say “Mom!!!”
    When I am caught, I have apologized and admitted that it was wrong even if what I said was true in some cases.
    I want the “Archie Bunker” era to end. Where Edith stifles herself and some armchair man with an audience gets to pronounce scathing judgment on anyone who he sees as ‘wrong’.
    Can we just use the Bible when correcting each other? After all, what is 2 Tim 3:16 about? I hear very little Bible coming out in some of his comments. Maybe a little more Bible (God) and a lot less Mark would be good when it comes to this sort of thing?
    And I agree with him about some of his points concerning the female bishop but why does he have to bring gender into it? I wouldn’t allow a fluffy bunny in the pulpit. 🙂

  • Jason_73 says:

    I think maybe Paul and his friends would understand if people protested their meetings on the base that they are intolerant of other peoples religous beliefs. Mars Hill doesn’t run a compound that keeps people locked up in cells. Apparently thousands and thousands of people enjoys going to church there, and if they didn’t they could simply never come back to that church again. Are we really surprised that there are disgruntled ex-members of Mars HIll? Heck, my church has 70 people and we have tons of disgruntled ex-members for every kind of reason. This protest is ridiculous and an embarrassment to Christianity in an already difficult season.
    Unfortunately I found my self reading waaaaay to much about this last night and woke up feeling sick in my spirit. These ex-members that Paul and Helen seem so quick to protect are speading disgusting, profane hearsay and slander about Mark, his wife, and others at Mars Hill and we’re suppose to dismiss that and support the protest? They use ZERO scripture and biblical basis for their arguments, they disregard everything that Mars Hill elders and deacons respond to as lies to protect Mark. They use terms like Mark being like Hitler, and the women that support him having Stockholm syndrome.
    Finally, can we stop giving credit to people like Ben Savage from the Stranger? Read any of his blogs, and those guys run down profanely about everything secular and sacred. And we are disappointed that they don’t love Mars Hill? People in Chicago resent Willow Creek, in, Saddleback.. and we’re surprised that liberal Seattle dispises Mars Hill? That is very invalid Paul. Not everyone will love Christians who follow Jesus. Your protest will do nothing but cause greater harm to an already tense month. Well, I take that back.. God can use anything to test and try our Christlikeness and submission to him. I’m thankful he is greater than your ego-centric grandstanding. Maybe you should read what Peter said about Jesus when he said in 1 Peter 2:22-23 “He committed no sin, neither was deciept found in his mouth. When he was reviled he did not revile in return; when he sufferered he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to Him who judges justly.” That seems to not matter to this group who hold their social-protest fantasies over biblical precepts. Try engaging your energies in something a bit more valuable like the child sex trade, slavery and hunger. Not on a group of wealthy americans who are growing into one of the largest churches in America for a reason. This is insane. If you don’t like him, then don’t listen to him. Sorry for the long post Andrew. It won’t happen again.

  • ellie says:

    i remember once protesting at a church in my home town that was publicly supporting apartheid in south africa. it was a peaceful protest. we sat outside with placards, we sang hymns, we were making a public statement that there was a different gospel, one of love and justice. we did it because the “gospel” the world was hearing from this church was wrong. And we did not know what else to do. It was a really difficult thing to do. I’m so pleased we did. To stand by and watch would have been a betrayal of the gospel.
    i hear paul saying that he is on the ground in seattle, and that we are hearing only a tiny part of the story that he is hearing. i hear his frustration and that every other avenue of communication hasn’t been successful. And certainly Mark is public about his desire to be inaccessible.
    i am deeply respectful of you paul for making a stand, for not letting this be ok, for not just laying low and checking your own are safe.
    Mark’s attitudes and behaviours are not simply words that we should all become more resilient towards. They are hurtful, but more than that, they are the kind of words that will damage vulnerable women for a long, long time. I think that’s what a lot of men don’t realise. This is really dangerous territory – tapping into power relationships, body image, sexuality, and creating very destructive patterns of thinking.
    It’s not enough to send emails and ask mark to post his half hearted apologies that change nothing. We’re watching large scale damage happen.

  • Helen says:

    Andrew, thanks for e-mailing Mark.
    Jason, Willow Creek is a LOT different from Mars Hill. Please do not compare them as if they are the same. Willow Creek affirms full equality in male and female leadership roles. Also Willow Creek has never had a senior pastor who takes delight in ridiculing and mocking what other denominations are doing.

  • Paul says:

    Andrew wrote: “Apology? yes indeed.
    Public shaming? maybe . . if thats what it takes – dress him in pink and give him 39 lashes with a furry Prada handbag.”
    I bet I could get Dan Savage behind that one! I can see the YouTube video now! 😉
    “but asking him to step down from his church is way overkill. dont you think?”
    I don’t think. As Helen noted, when the church allows this level of persistent behaviour, the rest of society notices the hypocricy. How is it that Ted Haggard’s actions (private infidelity) merit removing him while Mark’s (repeated publicly demeaning and degrading women) do not? Is extramarital sex worse than extramarital abuse?
    If possible, please do email or call him again to plead with him to leave his pastorate and get some help. He–and the rest of us in Seattle–really need him to do that.

  • Paul says:

    Jason_73: Here’s the deal: women have been ripped to shreds by bigotry and disgusting remarks at the hands of Mark (and others at Mars Hill). You say we are “are speading disgusting, profane hearsay and slander about Mark, his wife, and others at Mars Hill”. We don’t have to spread anything. Mark is doing a dandy job of it for us! Thank you for agreeing with us that Mark’s remarks are disgusting.
    Ellie — thank you for the encouragement. As I noted in a post on the People Against Fundamentalism site, it is generally women who are standing up here and saying Enough! I wish more men would join us.

  • jose says:

    There is a denomination in the US called the EPC that states their position on ordination as follows:
    “The Evangelical Presbyterian Church does not believe that the issue of the ordination of women is an essential of the faith. The historic Reformed position on the scriptural doctrine of government by elders is believed to be that form needed for the perfecting of the order of the visible church, but has never been considered to be essential to its existence.” (for more see)
    I know some really smart folks who can defend either position. I don’t think this position is an essential to the faith. I like the EPC’s motto – In essentials unity, in non-essentials liberty, and in all things charity.
    Now I do agree that women have been made to fly coach in the church, at the same time it can be argued that men are emasculated and infantilized in the American Evangelical church.
    What is difficult to discern in the posts here are people are upset at Driscoll because he believes in male only eldership, or is the issue a moral/character issue wrt to the way he is holding his position (mysoginist, sexist, chauvinistic)?
    If you hold that God has called women and men to be elders (you might not even believe in ordination, that’s fine) do you hold it with a fundamentalist attidude (ie. an essential to salvation) or in a way that gives people freedom to think differently on a non-essential?
    What ever happens here, I hope we can come to a place where we can have unity in the essentials, freedom in non-essentials, and charity and all things.
    Peace, Jose

  • Corrie says:

    Jose, great post. I happen to hold to the belief that scripture teaches that only males can be ordained. But,
    I hold to that belief in the same way I hold to mode of baptism- not essential to salvation.
    I truly believe it is possible to have unity and respect between Christians on either side of the fence. Respectful dialogue IS essential.
    I see that MD posted aresponse to his critics to clarify his statements. I am see this as a positive sign and that it is necessary to hold each other, especially our leaders accountable. His response sounded humble and sincere and one that is more in keeping with edification for all who need to be exhorted.

  • Paul says:

    Jose — I believe that the gospel is about justice.
    And I’m against women being abused as an essential. I don’t think men should be permitted to demean and degrade women.
    Can we agree on those things?

  • jose says:

    Paul I know you are pissed, and I read your words and feel your frustration. I hope I have not ticked you off more.
    i agree that men and women should not be abused by anyone, and I also agree that men (in this case church leaders) can not be permitted to demean or degrade women, nor do I believe that women can be permitted to demean and degrade men (justice keeps the weight equal on both ends).
    but please make it clear what this protest is about…
    because I hear your frustration with MD and the ludicrous comments he has made, retracted, and re-made that do demean and degrade women. I don’t think anyone is disagreeing with you that a moral line has been crossed and this matter requires attention and discipline. A discipline that the elders in his local church should be the first to address if they are “man enough.”
    And if you hold off your protest a little bit, and if your brother won’t hear you, and if he won’t listen to a few other people, then tell it to the elders in his church, and if he refuses to listen to his church, then march.
    but is your protest also about something else? would endfundemetalism be going after MD now if he just held his view on male only leadership graciously without his overweight sexist and chavinistic baggage? i know some reading this blog would argure the two are inseperable…not to allow women to be ordained is abuse, it demeans and degrades women. but if this is the case why don’t you go after some really big fish in the pond. MD is a guppie. MD is only number 22 on the list of the 50 most influential churches in the US. There are some really good fundamentalists in the top 20.

  • Jason_73 says:

    Paul – Who are you sticking up for? Once again, I know you don’t seem to listen to anyones side other than your own. People from Mars Hill have shared there very biblical statement on the role of men and women, People like Andrew and Bob have told you this is a bad idea, but you ignore them.. The elders and deacons have stated that many of the rumors are unfounded. Yet you don’t believe that. There are thousands of content women at Mars Hill that don’t need your protest. Unless you are so arrogant that you think you know better than they do. Is your protest for those that have left the church who are disgruntled? Some of the same ones that are spreading malicious gossip about Mark and his wife. Well then you have about 1 million other churches that have disgruntled ex-members who you need to start your unbiblical protest for. Seriously, who benefits from this protest other than the likes of the secular and independent media who have tons more fodder for their distain of the church. Please reconsider. Take Mark for his word, follow biblical precepts. I’m sorry if I’ve come off as harsh in my posts to you. I just see this as complete insanity and hope the zealousness of my posts gets some thoughts headed toward common sense.

  • Paul says:

    Jose — Mark Driscoll is in my back yard. The other guys aren’t. They may or may not merit protest, but I’m not able to do that.
    I’m not sure where you live, but in Seattle, Driscoll is notorious. As you can tell from all the recent blogs, many people have rebuked Mark personally.
    What I have said before is that this protest comes after all these other people have tried and not been successful.
    Had people been successful 8 years ago when Mark’s bizarre and degrading behaviour was beginning, I wouldn’t need to spark a protest today.

  • Paul says:

    jason_73: who am I sticking up for? hmmm. Go to and read. I think we’re pretty clear.

  • ellie says:

    Jason, i’m not speaking for Paul.
    I disagree with Mark’s theological position, but i celebrate theological diversity. That’s not the point in this situation.
    It’s Mark’s consistent abuse of women, and of men who would stick up for them – and the fact that he does this in the name of the gospel – that i find abominable.
    His comments are dangerous. Try to read his anecdotes in the comments in response to Ted Haggard from the perspective of a woman who, for instance, has been told all her life that she is only worth anything for the sex. His comments would confirm her opinion of herself. Read them from the perspective of a woman who has struggled all her life with an eating disorder, born out of a fear that she isn’t, and can never be, good enough or beautiful enough to be loved. His comments would confirm that.
    It’s not the gospel. The gospel brings life. These comments diminish and destroy.
    i am sure there are some women who could hear them and not be affected, or who could hear them as Mark apparently wants them to be heard. But the one’s who will hear them wrong are the ones who can least afford to. And the fact that he refuses to change his behaviour, even though it is damaging people who are incredibly vulnerable (both ex Mars Hill attenders, as Paul attests, and other people globally through the internet), is the thing that is staggering, arrogant and needs to be stopped.

  • ReneeM says:

    I am not sure to be thankful or not for all those links… I have been at the computer quite a while!! 🙂
    Seriously, thanks for putting those in… I appreciate getting a chance to read varied views and voices… it didn’t take near as much time as it would have!!
    I won’t add my opinion… BUT… am praying… praying…

  • ok – Mark has posted a response.
    Maybe we should stop posting here and shift over to the new post
    Mark Responds
    let me know what you think . ..

  • David Malouf says:

    I’d like to echo the first comment (Joe). Not agreeing with someone’s theology doesn’t mean you’re right. Most of the responses (here and elsewhere) are simply tit-for-tat. Can SOMEONE come up with something more constructive than, “You’re wrong, and I’m right.” Equating submission with oppression, etc. Seriously, would someone ADD something!
    I too appreciate the tone of the post, by the way.

  • kairos blog says:

    Helpful, but misses the mark…

    Updating my earlier entry, Mark Driscoll thanks his critics on his blog this week. He stresses that his advice was directed towards young male clergy, and wasn’t intended nor thought through for a wider audience. So, as Stephen Shields summarizes:What

  • Mike Clawson says:

    ::Sarcasm alert::
    Dude… from that picture it looks like Mark himself is getting a little chubby. Is he letting himself go? Getting lazy? Maybe he better watch out for that lest his wife be tempted to start seeking sexual satisfaction outside of their marriage…

  • Vince says:

    Unfortunately, due to Mark’s particularly bad (and sexually irrelevant?) timing with this one point, the real issue that I see here will be lost. I don’t have the history with Mars Hill that many others have, and I can’t speak to the accusations I see here about Mark’s being consistently ___________ (fill in the horrible blank), but what I see underlying many of the loudest and most violent protests is not “justice” at all, but rather PC outrage at the very idea that wives and husbands should be good stewards of their bodies for each other. Our culture, including much of which has infected our church culture, is so overwhelmingly ME-centered that it is considered downright apostasy to even consider the fact that I should do anything with my “ME” for somebody else! “How dare anyone think I’m less caring and sexually available to my mate at 500 pounts than I was at 120! You cruel, heartless, sexist beasts!” But Paul states just the opposite of the “it’s MY body” mantra in 1 Cor. 7:4. I know of at least one prominent pastoral couple who have it written directly into their marriage covenant that if either one of them starts to “let themselves go,” as Mark put it, the other has the absolute right to insist that they do whatever is necessary to correct the situation, whether it be get to the gym, mellow out on the food, etc. But God forbid we ever suggest that staying attractive to your mate might be considered an act of love.

  • hylander says:

    McKnights thread closed on this topic, unfortunately. Too bad most of the lemmings seem to concur with the host of the site. However, I think at this specific time, and with this specific incident, Mark Driscoll has spoken almost prophetically to a culture that is in most dire need to be corrected theologically, sociologically, pyschologically, philosophically, and most importantly biblically. I think we owe a great debt to Mark for standing for the truth and humbly speaking to the youth and pastors regarding the need to submit ourselves daily to the throne of God’s Grace (Jesus Christ)! He also deserves our prayers. All this cacophony and mindless meanderings, opinions, and “spin” needs to come to a halt. It simply amazes me how in the American culture one can point the finger and call something they hear and label it hate speech or comment that that is “intolerant” all the while are professing the same very thing; ironic indeed? Mark has my full support, God is certainly not done with him yet, He is only getting started. Mark and his style of leadership and way of doing church, along with the Acts 29 Network, speaks more clearer and more relavently to the post modern generation than any other church at this time, in my opinion!
    All for Christ,

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