Mark Driscoll is the pastor of Mars Hill, a mega church in Seattle. One Newsweek blogger, David Sessions, writes that Driscoll is “a testosterone-oozing Calvinist bruiser who shouts at his congregation, swears from the pulpit, and sometimes seems to think that if you’re not cut out for the locker room, you’re not cut out for heaven. If you’re a woman, you’d better make sure you keep your husband fed and serviced.” I thought that sounded a bit harsh, so of course, I did my own research. Come to find out, this particular blogger was way too kind. I was shocked at what Driscoll is quoted as saying and writing. Even as an ex-Evangelical, who has dealt with more than a few narcissistic pastors. I want to spend some time on Driscoll in upcoming posts, but for now I want to touch upon one of his recent tweets and one of my pet peeves about the Christian community and more specifically Christian pastors.
Here’s the tweet: “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.”
There it is. Pastor Driscoll knows the hearts and minds of men and has deemed Obama a non-believer. Well, he did say, “likely does not know,” psh! When I read that tweet, I got so angry and I’m learning that if I have a visceral response to something, a tender, and not yet healed area in me has been jabbed at. I figured it out pretty quickly. It reminded me of how important it was to look and act like a “Christian,” in the Christian community: Show no cracks, have no struggles, unless they were acceptable struggles, follow the rules, and most importantly, you and your kids better “look” Christian. Driscoll’s whole attitude brought to mind how Christians constantly judge other Christians and, as a Christian, you are always on your guard, because you certainly don’t want to be judged and your authenticity questioned—but it is; it always is.
The associate pastor at my old Church, Parkway Community Church, was always saying, “Well, they say they’re a Christian,” which always suggested that their salvation was in question for myriad of reasons. These reasons, of course, were confidential and so you wouldn’t find out just what they were until your small group offered them up as vicious pieces of gossip—oops! I mean prayer requests.
Christians who would say that this does not take place in their church on a regular basis, is lying to themselves, or…they are the one who is most guilty of doing it. To be fair though, some churches are worse than others. I have found it more prevalent in Calvinistic churches. Calvinists are just meaner than your average run-of–the-mill Evangelical, and I say that having been one—an Evangelical and a Calvinist. Looking back, I can see how the more Calvinistic I became, the meaner I became—seriously mean and judgmental. I saw it happen in others too. I wonder why that is?
As far as Driscoll’s tweet on Inauguration Day goes, I hope he is right about Obama. I would feel better knowing that our President doesn’t live his life according to a book of myths and seek help from an imaginary friend, but as awesome as Mark Driscoll thinks he is, in the Christian world, he can’t know a man’s heart. No one can. He’s in my cross hairs now and I will have more to reveal about him very soon. I mean, I’ll have some prayer requests to share…