Would the Real John Piper Please Stand Up?

Friends I’m deeply troubled in my spirit by the recent milieu of questionable judgment demonstrated by one of my favorite modern day expositors of God’s Holy Word – John Piper.  The first check in my spirit came when I discovered that John Piper and C.J. Mahaney were guilty of propagating the revolting, awful, unthinkable, shocking, scripturally unsupportable, wholly unbiblical and abominable lie that  Jesus Christ was damned upon the crossMore recently, and much to my added chagrin, I’ve learned that John Piper invited the potty-mouthed prodigy Mark Driscoll to his Desiring God National Conference

Ingrid Schlueter has already taken John Piper to task on this issue over at Slice and I must say that I find it sad but telling that American Christianity has become so emasculated and effeminized that men-in-skirts spiritual sissies simply refuse to take a bold stand for Biblical purity and instead neglect (abdicate?) their scriptural responsibility preferring to leave the work for godly women like Ingrid.

Friends, readers, and fellow members of the body of Christ, in the light of scripture I believe that we have a personal spiritual duty to express our scriptural concerns about Mark Driscoll to the elders and pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church. I’m praying that John Piper will listen to godly counsel and take appropriate measures to eschew all appearance of evil and that he might offer loving but stern correction to Driscoll and of course separate himself from the man if he fails to repent and turn away from his sin.

Beloved let it be known that unrepentant, unbroken patterns of sin and rebellion against God’s Word aren’t trivial and aren’t the sign of a true born-again believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, rather they’re a sign that one’s faith may in fact be demonic.  Many including myself have disagreed with Ingrid Schlueter from time to time and I’m not here to defend her as she’s more than capable of taking care of herself. In fact the real issue at hand herein isn’t the personalities or opinions of the parties involved in this spiritual fiasco; the problem is sin – Mark Driscoll’s sin to be precise – and even more precisely how his sin is addressed.   This is the real and pressing issue!

In order to preserve the spiritual health and holiness of the Body (and in order to be obedient to Christ) sin must be dealt with as prescribed in the Holy Writ.  By failing to faithfully address sin and by continuing to extend invitations to an unrepentant sinner who professes Christ yet continues in unbroken patterns of unrepentant sin and rebellion against God’s Holy Word John Piper is guilty of enabling sin – and of giving it a platform at one of his conferences no less! (See related articles: Does Mark Driscoll Belong at John Piper’s Conference?  Source: Editors at Lighthouse Trails and The Guardian of Grunge and Seattle-Sludge Source: Steven J. Camp)

This is no light matter! 

This isn’t a minor doctrinal dispute! 

This isn’t about preferences or peripheral theological issues! 

This is a serious, weighty subject which affects the very spiritual purity of Christ’s church!

At best John Piper is giving an occasion for those weaker in the faith to stumble, and at worst he’s a partaker of Driscoll’s sin by unequally yoking himself together with a man who is in active and open rebellion against God’s Word.

Some have pointed toward the grace Paul extended to the church at Corinth and this is certainly a glowing example of a loving and godly apostle extending incredible patience towards a church that frankly most of us today would write off and ostracize without a trace of remorse and without a second thought. Rampant sexual immorality up to and including incest?!? Egads!!! Yet on the other hand 1 Cor 5:5 is an object lesson in church discipline which contains an incredibly stern rebuke to “deliver” the offending party “to Satan”.  The grossly distorted idea that somehow a warm, fuzzy, and often man-centered conception of “feel-good grace and love” are to supersede, trump, or otherwise displace godly rebuke and scriptural discipline is among the distinguishing marks of the apostatizing broader professing “American” church. What love is this?

While believers in India are being burned alive by Hindus and hacked to pieces by Muslims and animists in other parts of the world today prodigiously potty-mouthed Mark Driscoll is getting plum offers to appear at big-time conferences by John Piper. This ought to be troubling to the body (the true bride of Christ) and it ought to be especially troubling to the local body located at Bethlehem Baptist Church. 

Some have also pointed towards the fruit of John Piper’s life and let me tell you in all truth that the Lord knows that though I’ve never met him I nevertheless love and admire John Piper and his ministry. I share in the enthusiasm that many have for the man and in fact it’s with a heavy heart and much sighing in my spirit that I wrestle with his uncharacteristically unbiblical behavior in the very real and very serious spiritual matters before us today.

It pains me to conclude that in the light of revealed scripture John Piper is in violation of the Word of God by not openly correcting and rebuking, in truth and love, Mark Driscoll’s brazen and continual sin. I pray that the gentle reader will hear my heart on this matter and receive this commentary in the spirit in which it’s intended which is the desire for believers to be faithful to the Word above all else. I’ll close with quotes from John Piper himself on this selfsame subject as contained in Nathan Busenitz’s article entitled John Piper, Mark Driscoll, and Harsh Language and once again wonder aloud: Would the real John Piper please stand up?

Regarding Ephesians 4:29: [Another] kind of language I think Paul would include in his command not to let any rotten talk come out of your mouth is vulgar references to sex and the human body. . . . I recall a couple of men in graduate school in Germany who seemed to carry the aroma of vulgarity about them. All they ever seemed to laugh at was sexual innuendo. The pitiful thing about it was that the nearer they got to the gutter, the more they laughed. With their mouths they created an atmosphere like a stinking locker room. It was unpleasant for everybody but themselves. And it made noble and high and worthy thoughts all but impossible. It’s hard to savor beauty from a garbage dump. [9] 

Regarding Ephesians 5:3–4: Paul seems to be concerned mainly about two related errors: treating things as gross or treating things as trivial; filthiness and flippancy. There are people who are so dirty inside that they can hardly refer to a tree or a cloud or a fish hook or a brake pedal without treating it as filthy: they may do it with some gross language or simply with a despising attitude and demeanor. And there are people whose vision of the world is so superficial that they trivialize everything. Paul condemns both of these and says, “Get rid of all filthiness and coarseness on the one hand, and all foolishness and levity on the other.” [10]

And in another place (regarding Colossians 2:1–8): How can we guard ourselves against a foul or frivolous mouth? How can we guard ourselves against a mouth that is foul with criticism and bitterness … and sarcasm and disrespect and ridicule and cynicism? And how can we guard ourselves against a mouth that is just flippant and trivial and silly and petty? The answer to both questions is, Fill your mouth with thanksgiving. [11]

66 thoughts on “Would the Real John Piper Please Stand Up?

  1. Sad…yea indeed it is.

    Eddie – “I for one cannot cast the first stone. It’s sad that so many others fill they can.”

    I think you missed his entire point. Without even addressing the scripture he used to spell out his saddened heart over this … you calliously go to a scripture that will somehow defend your own notions. You missed the point completly.

  2. Have any of you gone to Dr. Piper before you posted this on the internet for the entire world to see as you and a woman named, Ingrid, take a godly and elderly, I might add, to task over his decision to about Driscoll?

    GOD allowed Dr. Piper’s humility and loving and passionate heart to speak to a former “arminian”. I could not even begin to listen to the plethora of calvinist in the way they talked and looked down their noses with disdain for the less intelligent.

    GOD in HIS Sovereignty allowed me to hear the voice of Dr. Piper and I wanted to listen more to what he had to say. I am now a thankful, saved by grace, reformed lover of the GOD of the Universe and HIS precious son, My Christ.

    Don’t play these games. GOD is over all and HE alone will judge your motives and your heart. You go to Dr. Piper first before you or anyone else degrades him in a public forum.

  3. Eddie – Thank you for stopping by and sharing, but with all humility I can only surmise from your comment that you either didn’t read and understand the point of this post, or alternatively that you’re taking the position that condoning, enabling, and offering a stage to a professing Christian who is in active rebellion against God’s Word is “the right thing”. Please elucidate upon your comment.

    Teri – I’m so thankful to hear that God moved on your heart and drew you into a deeper relationship with Himself through His Eternal Gospel of Grace! I’m sure John Piper would also rejoice in the fact that the Lord saw fit to use him and his ministry as an agency of His grace towards you.

    Please understand that John Piper has publicly invited Mark Driscoll and he posted a YouTube Video giving his rationale for having Driscoll speak at his conference. Sadly the video does nothing to speak to Mark Driscoll’s sinful and prodigious use of foul language nor did John Piper address Driscoll’s embrace of proponents of contemplative spirituality.

    This is a very public spiritual matter, not a private issue between believers in a local assembly. You’re correct about the One True and Living God’s absolute sovereignty, but you are missing the mark when you suggest that this is a game – it isn’t.

    It’s deadly serious – as serious as sin.

    I don’t believe anyone has judged John Piper’s heart, only his actions and the same goes for Mark Driscoll. Though God alone can judge the heart believers are commanded by scripture to judge the actions of other believers and to offer exhortation, correction, and even rebuke when necessary.

    In Christ,
    CD

  4. I left the following comment in the combox over at another blog tonight in response to an effort to defend the present Piper/Driscoll situation:

    Jim,

    Thanks for taking the time to dialogue and please understand that I’m in full agreement with your assessment of the importance of this discussion. John Piper is one of the most influential voices and recognizable figures within the Lord’s church today and it’s because of his position that his tacit approval and endorsement of Mark Driscoll is so very troubling to so many of his co-laborers in Christ.

    In the Bible the Lord’s half-brother James spends copious amounts of time under inspiration of the Holy Spirit exposing of the reality of religious self-deception and warning false teachers of the greater condemnation to come (James 3:1). James also has much to say about the world of iniquity known as the tongue. Furthermore believers are commanded to test the spirits (1 John 4:1-6; 2 Corinthians 11:14-15) and to examine the reality of our faith (2 Cor. 13:5). These admonitions are for the benefit of believers with the intent that we exercise spiritual discernment of teaching (Acts 17:11).

    The reason for citing these verses isn’t simply to bury you (or anyone else) in an avalanche of proof texts, but rather to make my point as clear as possible. I’m not nor have I ever suggested that I know the eternal trajectory of Mark Driscoll’s soul. I don’t. I don’t know his eternal destination any more than I know yours or anyone else’s. God alone is the judge of the heart and eternity, however while we are not to judge the heart Christians are commanded to judge the actions of other professing believers, otherwise there would be no such thing as church discipline.

    Despite the apparent attempts at blame shifting (it comes so naturally doesn’t it?) at the base of this issue isn’t – as some seem to want to suggest – whether or not Mark Driscoll, or John Piper, or John MacArthur have ever “said anything stupid” or committed sin – they surely have – just as all men apart from Jesus Christ Himself have done. At issue is the evident fact that Mark Driscoll – because of his well established pattern of filthy Christ-dishonoring communication – is in open, wanton, active rebellion against God’s Holy Word and therefore must submit to the authority of scripture, repent of his sin, and turn away from it or else he must be disciplined and considered as a restoration/witnessing prospect (Matt. 18:17). By failing to follow the clear commands of scripture in the Driscoll matter John Piper stands in violation of scripture.

    Furthermore avoiding the fundamental problem of Mark Driscoll’s well established pattern of very public and sinful communication by comparing him with others and complaining; “Yeah but…he’s not as bad as that guy!” is to miss the point altogether. In point of fact according to scripture believers are not to measure ourselves against one another, but we are to measure ourselves against Christ and His righteousness. How woefully we miss the mark! Yet herein lays our hope of glory – His amazing grace alone! Sadly Mark Driscoll has chosen to use his Christian liberty as an occasion for the flesh (Galatians 5:13).

    In closing I’m sorry that you found the link exposing Mark Driscoll’s connection to proponents of contemplative heresies to be “silly”, but regardless of your personal feelings the facts remain. I would simply ask how much heresy is “too much” for a Christian to dabble in? How much spiritual poison is acceptable for a spirit-filled, born again, blood bought child of God to imbibe? Who gets to decide? The crystal clear Biblical answer for these questions is absolutely none because God has already decided (2 Cor. 10:5).

    In Christ,
    CD

  5. I have a question:
    1. Has anyone challenged Mark Driscoll to conform to the scriptures in an open letter to him?
    Maybe he would repent of the sins committed?
    I will download the Video or mp3 when it is available and hear for myself what Mark Driscoll has to say.
    mark is very clear on the gospel and other Christian doctrines, so I had some of his videos in my favorites on Youtube page.
    I had removed all of his videos from my youtube page thinking better that people might think that I endorsed foul language and filthy talk, as of yesterday.
    Thank you for your Stand here!

  6. Why is believing Jesus was damned on the Cross heresy? Is this taught as heresy in the Scriptures? Is it not alluded to and possibly a logical conclusion from the atonement for mankind and Jesus’ statement on the cross? Why have you forsaken me? How is believing that any worse than believing Jesus became sin for us, as the Scriptures teach, when he clearly knew no sin? I wouldn’t call him a heretic for believing that.

  7. papapatriot – regarding your question I would encourage you to peruse Steve Camp’s take on this issue and then scan through his combox for the comments by “bluewoad” at 9:36 & 14:35 respectively.

    Sam – I don’t believe that I’ve read where anyone has declared that believing Jesus was damned on the cross is heresy, but I would be very interested in exploring and considering such an argument. Can you show me where you’ve seen the claim made?

    To be honest with you and faithful to the scriptures I’m forced to think that staking out a position that such a revolting and repugnant claim is merely heretical is far too weak. In fact I would argue that believing that Jesus Christ, the Lord of Glory, Prince of Peace and Righteous Anointed One was damned goes well beyond heresy and falls headlong into utter blasphemy. I tremble in my spirit at the mere consideration such a hell-spawned and demonic conception and I earnestly pray for those who publicly entertain and espouse such fevered high-noon fantasies.

    In Christ,
    CD

  8. I used to hold this website in high regard for exposing HERESY and APOSTASY in the “Church” and seeking to inform us about the many obvious false and dangerous teachings of Religions and the professing Christian Church. I believe You have gone too far this time, JOHN PIPER has been a Godly example of a Pastor and Teacher for many years, He has by God’s Grace impacted the lives of thousands of Believers. Why do You feel the need to tear Him down because He supports Mark Driscoll, a Man who has brought The Gospel Of Jesus Christ to one of the least churched places in the United States. YES a Pastor and Teacher is and should be held to a higher account and as some one who has listened to HOURS of Preaching and Teaching from BOTH Men I don’t see the kind of behavior You claim is so ungodly. There is a MAJOR difference between CONTENDING FOR THE FAITH and TEARING DOWN A PROFESSING BROTHER IN JESUS CHRIST.

  9. Pasquale – Thank you for sharing your thoughts and I’m truly sorry if you are offended by my article, yet the truth is the truth and sin is sin and the tacit approval and/or endorsement of the type of unrepentantly sinful vulgarity that consistently spews forth from Mark Driscoll is shameful and ought not to be.

    The intent here isn’t to tear John Piper down but to bring to light a serious matter of enabling (perhaps even celebrating) sin and giving credence to a man (Mark Driscoll)who ought to be lovingly rebuked. This isn’t a case where someone said something one time that was off color, in error, or unbiblical that was repented of and not repeated. This is a case where someone (Mark Driscoll) has built an entire ministry by employing “shock-jock” tactics, scatalogical references, unclean and immodest language, and even (almost unbelievably) homosexual references toward the Risen Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

    I ask you Pasquale, would you like to be warned before you go to a Desiring God Conference with your spouse and/or children that one of the speakers has a history of regularly using foul, smutty, gutter slime language and regularly employing crude, unseemly sexual references in his sermons even going so far as to jest about exploring homosexual encounters with Jesus Christ in heaven from the pulpit?

    Is this what you expect to hear from a pastor/teacher of God’s Holy Word?

    Should people be warned about a man like this?

    Should John Piper be inviting a man like this to speak at his conference?

    This ought not to be so.

    I love John Piper and his ministry and have been blessed of the Lord through both. I’m deeply grieved to see him upon the slippery slope of relativism on this matter. The means simply don’t justify the ends. This whole sad debacle is pragmatism at its worst. I wish I didn’t have to write about this because it’s heartbreaking for me personally but I love the Lord Jesus Christ and his church and I’m far more committed to the purity of the church which He purchased through His own sinless blood than I am to the man John Piper.

    In Christ,
    CD

  10. I for one thank God for this site and the fearless men that post articles for our edification here.

    Recently i posted an article on my blog regarding Driscoll.He said among other things that Joel Osteen was his brother in Christ.I could not take my minister seriously if he came out with an off the wall statement like that and it shows a seriously worrying lack of even the very basic discernment on Driscolls behalf.

    People accused me off attacking a brother and that i was wrong about him because he is a good freind of Pipers.

    Anyway i took the post down and contacted Driscoll to appologise with no response.

    Sounds like i was too hasty and after reading your post might have to re-post the article.

    In Christ
    dale

  11. It is sad indeed. To think we have false teachers out in the world teaching people that our Sovereign, Omniscient, Omnipotent God has limitations on His power and knowledge. We have people teaching that it’s your attitude, not grace that will get you into heaven. Yet, we can sit here and debate John Piper’s sin because he is allowing someone you don’t agree with to come to his conference. John Piper has stood for Truth, Inerrancy of Scripture, the Trinity and has always spoken truth from the Bible as God has laid it on his heart. One thing happens (and a fairly little one at that), and BAM we are all over him. Let’s get the wolves in sheep’s clothing instead of attacking the true sheep. This is truly sad indeed.

  12. Please, do not misunderstand my last post. I am incredibly grateful for this site and it’s ministry. In fact, I want to become a member somehow if I can. It’s just that we have heretical teachers pretending to be godly who are sending people to hell everyday. Yes, Piper may be wrong; but I am confident in knowing God will deal with him on the issue. Instead, let’s focus these efforts to men and women who preach heresy.

  13. At this time, I am only going to give a few thoughts as I plan to address “Worship in the Pulpit” in the series on worship I have been posting recently.

    John, it is fully agreed that it is a sad day when something happens to a minister of the gospel. Yet, this is not an isolated incident. This has been on-going with John Piper now for the last couple of years at least. Yes, there are heretics out there which need to be addressed and will continue to do so with the use of blogs like this one.

    Piper has been warned and admonished both privately and publicly because he has chosen a path which brings dishonor and shame on the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ. He chooses to continue down a path which actually seems to be separating him from the path which was truly contending for the faith.

    Sadly, many who claim to be ministers of the gospel (like Driscoll and Tripp) are merely a reproach to the church. I do not believe they started out that way, and we can only pray that they do not remain in the path which they are so carelessly treading.

    May I direct the attention of all to an account in the Word of God which receives very little attention. Galatians 2:11, “Now when Peter had come to Antioch, I withstood him to his face, because he was to be blamed.” The word for blamed is to find fault with.

    Here was one minister openly rebuking and making public that rebuke for it was deserved. Peter was wrong and was making a mockery of what he said he believed in regards to salvation being for Jew and Gentile alike without the addition of the law in regards to circumcision. Paul lovingly rebuked Peter and managed to do so (from what appears in Scripture) in a way that Peter learned humility.

    The difference between this account and what we see with many ministers today is that ministers today do not want accountability. They start getting large, well-known ministries and nobody dares to question what they teach anymore. They can stand firm in a particular set of doctrines and everybody listens to them, and thinks they are the best thing since Charles Spurgeon to come along.

    But what happens when they do start going astray. I believe the Bible makes it clear that we are to take a firm stand against heresy, against false teaching, against any aspect of ministry which would bring a reproach on a person’s testimony and more importantly against the testimony of Jesus Christ.

    There are many other issues at stake than what we have covered briefly here. We at Defending Contending can only ask that each of you search your hearts. Ask the Lord whether you would accept from your own pastors what you say you are willing to accept from John Piper just because of who he is or what he has taught in the past. Ask yourself whether what he allows in his pulpit is truly acceptable to the Lord. If a person is honest, they would have to come to a similar conclusion that it is not ever acceptable from ministers to act the way these men are doing now.

    The Desert Pastor

  14. great post.

    I would also like to know why Mark’s good friend Hank Hanegraaff of the radio show Bible Answer Man

    isnt speaking out on Mark’s smutty beahvior.

    both Hank Hanegraaff and John Piper need to explain themselves for not speaking out on Driscoll’s smutty sermons and behavior.

  15. DP – thanks for your insightful and Christ-honoring words on this subject. I’m deeply grateful for those pastors who diligently and earnestly show themselves approved, rightly dividing the Word of Truth, being instant in season and out of season always ready to give an answer for the hope that lies within them.

    I’m humbled and thankful for your steadfast service to the Lord, brother. May He keep you by His grace alone.

    I would also like to direct the interested reader to carefully review Steve Camp’s devastating expose on the matter at hand, and to prayerfully read through the POWERFUL and INTENSE yet godly and humble discussion that’s presently taking place in his combox.

    In Christ,
    CD

  16. When my daughter was upset about some national and world-wide tragedies, I had learned that Mr. Piper often preached on this topic out of the text in the Bible related to what happened with Pilate’s atrocities against the Galileans, and when the tower of Siloam fell and killed 18 people. “Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise parish.” (Luke 13:3;5) He was talking about a bridge which had collapsed and killed many people in Minnesota, if I’m not mistaken..

    We were listening in the car as I drove her to school. (Yes, I know, I’m not homeschooling her – I’m a terrible heretic – cancel my speaking engagement at the next big Reformed conference). Everything was going fine. We were both learning a lot, and being encouraged and edified, and then Mr. Piper blurts out the “d” word. Not as a verb, like it’s used in the Bible. But as an exclamation or an adjective just thrown into a sentence for emphasis, I guess. My daughter wanted to know if I would discipline her using such language. She knew I would. Gospel preaching, or anything said from a Gospel pulpit should not contain what the Bible calls filthy or corrupt communication.

  17. It seems MC and JP have become “untouchables” in the body of Christ, “off limits”, “above correction, or confrontation or reproof or rebuke”, Over at Pulpit Magazine I have been called, judgemental, devisive, proud, bitter, angry, simply because I have serious issues and have with MD for almost 3 years. As far as Piper being confronted and Driscoll on these matters, they have! Go back to Pulpitmagazine.com in December I believe “I left a comment back then” on MD and his smut talk by Dr. MacArthur himself. The defense always given since way back then was that just being around Piper and Mahaney and other solid teachers would give them a chance to influence and speak with MD about the whole matter, but looks what has happened, he has become more theological sound but continues to use scatology and defend it and arrogantly challenge those who confront him. All because he knows how to preach “he’s an actor” and “good communicator” like a presidential candidate that shall remain nameless, he knows how to behave when around the likes, or maybe not anymore, Piper and Mahaney, and his Calvinistic presentations and he is refining (ironic, the use of refining in context with MD) his precise theology (check it out though, is he really on target anyone checked out his contemplative connections?)
    He get by with the bad behaviour. Thanks DefCon, they thought I was harsh to comment over at pulpit (well the pomo folks did) wait until they come here, you’re fixin’ to get stoned! As far as girlie men leaving the responsibility of godly Christian me or abdicating it rather, to godly women, THANK YOU! That’s how I was feeling over at Pulpit, come on guys speak up, I’m just a chick, who loves the truth and am troubled by that Mark Driscoll and have been for almost 3 years! There are other troubles that I have come across regarding MD, stuff only the insiders would know, that inner circle, but you know, time will tell, God is sovereign. I think of that godly Apollos who listened to Pricilla and Aquilla and how he showed humility and wanted what was best for the gospel, I think of those who said, we are of Paul or Apollos or someone else. I have always had some sort of slight hesitation towards JP, don’t know why, I think, I said I think, me, my opinion, he likes drama and passion and theatrics and is becoming more and more controversial, trying to find some “new words” and “catch Phrases” come on you know he is great at this, you can always tell the Piperites, they sound like they were memorizing Piper like the Bible, hanging on every sophisticated, lofty, profound word or phrase comin’ outta his mouth. Ok, so I close with and Amen and a Thank you and a I hope we don’t have to arrogantly say “I told you so to all the disappointed, Driscollettes and Piperites!

  18. If anyone is interested in understanding John MacArthur’s position on Mark Driscoll you can read about it here, but as far as his position on Piper’s invitation to Driscoll to appear and speak at his 2008 Desiring God Conference…well…only time will tell.

    From his December 11th, 2006 article entitled “Grunge Christianity? Counterculture’s Death-Spiral and the Vulgarization of the Gospel” MacArthur well says:

    Worldly preachers seem to go out of their way to put their carnal expertise on display—even in their sermons. In the name of connecting with “the culture” they want their people to know they have seen all the latest programs on MTV; familiarized themselves with all the key themes of “South Park”; learned the lyrics to countless tracks of gangsta rap and heavy metal music; and watched who-knows-how-many R-rated movies. They seem to know every fad top to bottom, back to front, and inside out. They’ve adopted both the style and the language of the world—including lavish use of language that used to be deemed inappropriate in polite society, much less in the pulpit. They want to fit right in with the world, and they seem to be making themselves quite comfortable there.

    Mark Driscoll is one of the best-known representatives of that kind of thinking. He is a very effective communicator—a bright, witty, clever, funny, insightful, crude, profane, deliberately shocking, in-your-face kind of guy. His soteriology is exactly right, but that only makes his infatuation with the vulgar aspects of contemporary society more disturbing.

    Driscoll ministers in Seattle, birthplace of “grunge” music and heart of the ever-changing subculture associated with that movement. Driscoll’s unique style and idiom might aptly be labeled “post-grunge.” His language—even in his sermons—is deliberately crude. He is so well known for using profane language that in Blue Like Jazz (p. 133), Donald Miller (popular author and icon of the “Emerging Church” movement, who speaks of Driscoll with the utmost admiration) nicknamed him “Mark the Cussing Pastor.”

    I don’t know what Driscoll’s language is like in private conversation, but I listened to several of his sermons. To be fair, he didn’t use the sort of four-letter expletives most people think of as cuss words—nothing that might get bleeped on broadcast television these days. Still, it would certainly be accurate to describe both his vocabulary and his subject matter at times as tasteless, indecent, crude, and utterly inappropriate for a minister of Christ. In every message I listened to, at least once he veered into territory that ought to be clearly marked off limits for the pulpit.

    In Christ,
    CD

  19. Thanks for sharing Ministry Addict – Piper has actually related a story of his mother literally washing his mouth out with soap for using unclean language.

    T. Salas – yes the state of affairs within the modern day broader professing church is sad indeed, and it seems the bar continues to be lowered in the race to very bottom of the cultural cesspool.

    Karie – thanks for dropping by. I went back into the Pulpit archives and found where MacArthur directly addressed Driscoll and that article has been linked here at DefCon for the edification of our readers.

    Rose – thanks for the hat tip, the lighthouse trails piece has been linked up here as well.

    In Christ,
    CD

  20. I must say I am somewhat confused about this post. I like both Driscoll and Piper and I agree that Mark needs to tone it down with the swearing that he uses at times. However I don´t for one minute think he is not a Christian or a False Teacher. Mark Driscoll is a young and growing pastor who will learn with age. John Piper has obviously identified his gifting and is seeking to guide and exhort Mark in his ministry. I really dont think we can jumped to the conclusion that John Piper has gone mad and Driscoll is heathen. One must ask himself the question; what was I like at that age when i was a young man in the ministry? Mark Driscoll will learn and grow with time and his love for Jesus and the lost is evident for all to see. Im with you on the cursing thing yes…….but i think we should be examining ourselves and our own sin and the times we have failed in the past and learnt from them….God is doing a work in Mars Hill and I am confident that he who began a good work there will carry it on to completion……..

  21. I certainly pray that you’re right reformedpilgrim – but the sad truth is that immersion in worldly culture (as the case is with Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill) unfailingly results in the corruption of the individual and the worldiness of the church as opposed to the sanctification of the culture. Be ye separate.

    In Him,
    CD

  22. Steve Camp said in his post on “The Scream of the Damned”:

    “The Scream of the Damned seems like language that is meant to provoke thought, solicit listenership, entice questions and entreat discussion rather than expound and exegete Scripture.”

    Exactly. So, why have we bunched our undies over this? Christ was FORSAKEN BY GOD, BECAME A CURSE, but He wasn’t “damned”. Aren’t we parsing words, when any reasonable observer, including Mr. Camp, realizes the phrase wasn’t intended to be a precise exegesis of any particular text(s)? I’m not arguing for the phrase as particularly useful or helpful, but, in its context, it certainly isn’t heretical.

  23. Desert Pastor:

    Thank you. You are absolutely right. I did not realize that John Piper had been rebuked both publicly and privately. Thank you for your clarification and I humbly submit my apology. I think you are correct when it comes down to the fact when a pastor gets so large and public, we tend to take his words for granted. I believe we do need to check what we hear out of the mouths of humans against the Word of God. It also challenges me to make sure I am in the up and up when it comes to the background of a situation like that. Again thank you and my apologies. I appreciate the stand you are taking, not only against the bold faced heretics, but the stand for accountability too.

    Is there a way to sign up for this site?

  24. DP,

    You said, “Piper has been warned and admonished both privately and publicly because he has chosen a path which brings dishonor and shame on the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ. He chooses to continue down a path which actually seems to be separating him from the path which was truly contending for the faith.”

    Yikes, bro! Are you sure you want to say that kind of thing in public? That’s a pretty vague accusation. What, exactly, was he admonished for? By whom? How is it you became aware of this private admonishment? Who decides when, where and how a particular pastor has “separated from the path which is truly (as you are, I presume) contending for the faith”?

    This has been a very sad week for me as well in regards to the Driscoll/Piper hubbub, though for very different reasons.

    God Bless

    = (

  25. Jim B.

    Please read DefCon’s Rules of Engagement to gain a clear understanding of why some of your comments haven’t (and never will) see the light of day on this blog.

    While you may freely employ vitriolic ad hominem attacks and belittling rants at your own blog, you may not do so here. Conduct yourself as a mature adult and you’ll be treated as one, likewise conduct yourself as an angry, frustrated child and you’ll be treated as one. As a professing believer in the Lord Jesus Christ the standard for civil behavior is set higher, not lower than the visitors we regularly received from the world.

    In Christ,
    CD

  26. CD,

    This is to you, because I doubt this will make it through the DC filter. I have NEVER been deleted from a blog. And (probably to my shame) I comment on a LOT of blogs. Charismatic blogs. Mormon blogs. Leftist blogs. Etc. This is a first.

    I’d be curious to know exactly how I violated your Rules. I’ve read and reread my comments and can’t figure it out. The only rational explanation I can conjure is that, contrary to your preamble, you are afraid of dissent. My email is posted on my blog if you don’t care to interact further on this public medium.

    God Bless

    P.S. You know, I could consider your above comment an ad hominem. You’ve publicly stated that I’ve been vitriolic, belittling, ranting, immature, childish, angry, frustrated and uncivil. You and I both know neither of my brief comments would have engendered such a reaction from anyone but you. To insinuate otherwise, in the absence of my comments, is essentially… ad hominem – attacking the man, not the argument. (In case you were unaware, “ad hominem” is not merely a synonym for “mean”.)

  27. Jim B.,

    Your record stands because none of your comments have been deleted, some have merely been held in moderation.

    Furthermore I’m sorry if you can’t see that your moderated comments ending in accusations of “hair-splitting” and “bunched undies” were at best unproductive and at worse gratuitous swipes. Maybe this is a blind spot for you, I’m not sure.

    As far as my comments regarding your freedom at your blog vs. this blog my comments stand. Anyone is free to visit your blog and look at the exchange that you and I had and arrive at their own conclusions. I would also simply counter your charge that your “brief comments” and the “reaction” they supposedly engendered are somehow unusual or suspect with the reality that you obviously came here with the preconceived notions and with the intent of pursuing the “conversation” that ceased at your own blog. Do you deny this Jim? Would you have come to DefCon and left the comments you’ve left had you and I not exchanged posts at your blog? Of course not.

    None of the DefCon contributors have any qualms about dissent, Jim but we expect professing Christians to comport themselves accordingly. Your Driscoll-esque comments are simply not going to be permitted at this blog, especially in this particular forum.

    I’m off to church, God bless and please behave yourself here. Remember that you are a guest.

    In Christ,
    CD

  28. CD,

    I get what you are saying 100%. I guess I am just a little dismayed by the whole thing as I know John Macarthur has spoken out about it. Macarthurs ministry alongside Pipers has been a major blessing to me and to see two friends in the ministry (I believe Piper and Taylors new Editorial Book- Stand is dedicated to Macarthur) yet both have differing opinions regarding Driscoll. It does frustrate and sadden me how low holiness and righteous living is held by the modern church but don´t you at least think that doctrinally Driscoll is sound? I think that if his doctrine is sound then he will learn with age with regards to his conduct in the pulpit………let´s be a little slower to attack him though…..he loves Jesus….loves the lost and Mars Hill church has grown greatly. I listen to his sermons and he doesnt call people to a wishy washy Christianity….he is reformed (as far as I can tell) and I have yet to come across any of his teaching that has made me disagree (given I have only listened to between 10-20 sermons of His).

    I think we should watch this space with regards to Mark Driscoll. I for one am not prepared to jump on the bandwagon and criticise him or Piper.

    Id rather see more pots about heretics Brian Maclaren, Creflo Dollar, Doug Pagitt, Rob Bell etc. There teaching is becoming more and more popular amongst younger Christians. I dropped in to a Christian Youth event one night and the book stand was full of Mclaren and Bell etc. Their doctrine and teaching is an abomination and is not the true Gospel. Driscoll however does preach the true Gospel. Yes he is “earthy” in his language….but what would you rather have a guy who preaches the true gospel and is earthy at times or a heretic who preaches doctrines from the pits of hell itself? Can you see my point? We all have dirt in our lives…….we all have shortcomings…..yes he is a teacher of the word……but look at Pauls letters to Timothy…he was nearly watering down the gospel…instead Paul lovingly encourage him to stand strong and proclaim the message boldly…in a likewise fashion i think we should be being a bit more gracious toward Driscoll and saying something like “bro…..we love your passion and zeal but please tone down the language…you really dont need to use it.”…..i think to a certain degree thats what John Piper is trying to do behind the scenes with Driscoll.

    But keep up the work on the website…….i normally agree with everything you guys have on the site but with this one for the meanwhile I have to disagree. I may eat my own words in the future but time will tell.

    In Christ alone,

    R.P

  29. R.P. – Thanks for your obviously heartfelt and thoughtful comment. I appreciate and respect your position, but we clearly don’t share the same viewpoint on this subject.

    No one is saying that Driscoll never makes good points or that he’s a flat out, full blown, raving mad heretic with soul damning error falling out of his mouth each and every time he opens it. This is manifestly not the case.

    But herein lies the danger – Satan himself is doctrinally sound. Demons are quite orthodox in their theology and they tremble before God. On the other hand Mark Driscoll speaks like a reprobate from the pulpit and uses homosexual innuendo with reference to the Risen Lord of Glory! This is unspeakably blasphemous and terrifying! We certainly will have to disagree about this issue, R.P.

    The ongoing discussion at Steve Camp’s blog on this subject has been eye opening and very revealing. I encourage the interested leader to take the time to read Steve’s post and carefully read through the edifying exchange in the combox. Steve Camp has followed Driscoll for many years and here is his assessment of Driscoll’s theology:

    -He is Amyraldian in his view of the atonement.

    -He is Arminian in regards to his views on particular redemption and election (the two go hand in hand). After listening to many of his sermons, he really doesn’t understand the nature of the atonement in regards to propitiation.

    -He is also extremely Arminian/pragmatic in his presentation of the gospel. To be fair, he preaches a non-easy-believism gospel, but then his call for others to be saved is very Warrenesque (”just believe and receive…”). Driscoll IS the seeker-friendly ecumenical movement in grunge rags.

    -He is antinomian; and that is why his degrading speech is not contemptible and woeful to him (cp, Is. 6:1-6), but continues to treat it in a cavalier and casual manner. I don’t believe he sees it as sin.

    -He is disrespectful and irreverent to the name and person of Christ in that he will use the Lord’s name and aspects of His incarnation as a punch-line for his own brand of off-colored humor.

    -Mark has embraced Robert Schuller completely as one “who deeply loves Jesus…” He has partnered with Schuller in conference settings at The Crystal Cathedral and has failed to publicly call him to repentance for his false gospel.

    Steve Camp is a sincere and godly man without an axe to grind, and he doesn’t throw serious charges like these around willy-nilly. This ought to be very sobering to any believer who is still “on the fence” about Driscoll or his ministry.

    Furthermore I’m really astounded, confounded and saddened to think that anyone would read my post (or Steve Camp’s) and conclude that he or I are gratuitously attacking Driscoll. Godly criticism in the light of scripture should never be construed as an attack, on the contrary believers are commanded to speak out against error – especially within the church! It isn’t my intent to be ungracious or unloving in my approach to this subject, but rather to be forthright and honest in truth and love. I apologize and repent of my error if I’ve failed to do so.

    But the fact remains that Driscoll’s unrepentant, unbroken pattern of smutty language from the pulpit is in violation of scripture which has been covered here and in multiple other metas previously linked within this combox. In the light of scripture believers must understand that beneath the obvious external problems with Driscoll’s gutter-speak there clearly lies within a deeper spiritual problem for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks, and again what comes out of a man defiles him, and again as a man thinks in his heart so he is.

    You speak of Driscoll’s “earthy” language R.P., and I couldn’t agree more! It’s earthy all right; it’s earthy, worldly, fleshy, sensual and devilish (James 3:14-16). This is not at all representative of an adherence to God’s Word and reliance upon God’s wisdom but belies instead a worldly reliance upon the flesh and the intellect which things are in opposition and enmity to the Spirit.

    John MacArthur clearly recognizes this spiritual reality when it comes to Mark Driscoll while John Piper has completely missed the boat and evidently openly embraces his error. I wish I could believe that Piper is secretly “working on” Driscoll as some sort of “Paul & Timothy” spiritual discipling project is quietly taking place behind the scenes – but Driscoll has been on the same dead end road for at least as many years as he’s known John Piper, and thus far he has shown ZERO spiritual growth in this area whatsoever. What then shall we conclude? Maybe it will take him three more? Ten more? Thirty more? God only knows, but in the meantime he needs to repent of his uncleanness and turn away from his lewd sinfulness and if he fails to do so he must be disciplined and if he still refuses he must be considered as a restoration/witnessing prospect (Matt 18:15-17; 1 Cor. 5:9-13). Driscoll’s sincere and public repentance followed by actual fruits of repentance would be a really good starting point.

    As it stands right now Driscoll reminds me of Micah in the book of Judges. Micah built his very own backyard religion just the way he liked it. He mixed up some error and some truth that looked pretty good to him and to everyone else, and went about worshipping God in a way that was right in his own eyes. He even hired a Levite to be his priest to help him legitimize his idolatrous, abominable false religion – but in the end it couldn’t help him and he lost everything. (Judges 17-18) It’s my earnest prayer that Driscoll would simply abandon himself and return to Shiloh.

    In Christ,
    CD

  30. John, your humble apology has been accepted. Thank you. It is hard to take a stand and we at DefCon try to make as certain of our facts as possible before posting anything here.

    Jim B.,

    My statement was deliberate. It was meant to be said in public otherwise I would not have stated what I shared on this post. I stand by what I have said. As for what he has been admonished for, by whom, and how I was made aware of such private admonishment is really not open for discussion.

    Piper has chosen a path which is slippery and only leads away from what he has seemed to stand for over the past number of years.

    As far as who decides when, where and how a particular pastor has “separated from the path which is truly (as you are, I presume) contending for the faith”? The only answer can be when the preaching and ministry of the Word no longer lines up with the truth of Scripture. When popular opinion means more than standing alone if necessary, when worldliness is permitted instead of following the dictates which guide the behaviour which is acceptable for a pastor – all of these things give true believers the right to “judge according to righteous judgment.”

    The Desert Pastor

  31. Jim B.,

    Regarding your comments on Piper’s use of the phrase “The Scream of the Damned” at the 2008 Resolved Conference as discussed at Steve Camp’s blog in his article entitled The Scream of the Damned – Was Jesus Really Damned by God for Our Salvation you must realize that this isn’t the first, nor is it the only time Piper has uttered this blasphemy.

    If it’s “context” that you’re looking for then consider the following sermon by John Piper dated February 27th, 2005 which is entitled “God’s Wrath: “Vengeance Is Mine, I Will Repay,” Says the Lord”.

    I was researching this piece because it was linked from another blog as a resource for defending the Biblical truth of the doctrine of hell over and against the myriads who despise and reject this doctrine, but I was shocked to hear Piper make the exact same statement about Christ’s damnation on the cross near the beginning of this sermon. Beloved, Jesus Christ WAS NOT DAMNED ON THE CROSS and no matter how many times John Piper repeats this insidiously demonic and hell spawned lie it will never, ever be true!

    Interestingly one needs to listen to the audio because the statement didn’t make it into the sermon transcript (I wonder why?), but beginning at about the 1:18 mark Piper makes the statement; “Jesus Christ perfectly righteous and perfectly damned on the cross in our place”. BLASPHEMY! LIAR!

    Others may desire to belly up around the spiritual slop trough and root around guzzling up this sort of vile swill, but the Lord is my witness that I will have no part of it except to expose it.

    In Him,
    CD

  32. CD,

    Thanks for your response. You have cleared up some of the wider issues for me that I was unaware of. I understand your not “attacking” per se and I suppose the fact is that you are more informed than me on this topic and obviously because you know more there is more areas which you have seen that does not meet Scripture.

    One small point however………Driscoll isn´t Arminian….he´s a Calvinist. If you search youtube you will find a video of him teaching his congregation about Calvinism. I dont know enough to comment on whether he is an antinomian or not but i also dont think he is warrenesque in his call to believe. Recently a few sermons of his i have listened to, he has talked about Judas and modern Christians who are like Judas…ie they hang out with God´s people, say they believe etc but actually aren´t. In this he confronted the whole idea of just “believe”.

    Again, my mind has not been made up with regards to the stance I take on this issue and i think it would be wrong for me to make a judgement or decision regarding it whilst remaining unsure, but I will be checking the site for updates on future developments.

    In Him,

    RP

  33. R.P.

    The post didn’t say that MD is an ARMINIAN, the post said he holds an Arminian view of particular redemption and election and holds out an Arminian/pragmatic gospel presentation – see exact quotes below:

    -He is Arminian in regards to his views on particular redemption and election (the two go hand in hand). After listening to many of his sermons, he really doesn’t understand the nature of the atonement in regards to propitiation.

    -He is also extremely Arminian/pragmatic in his presentation of the gospel. To be fair, he preaches a non-easy-believism gospel, but then his call for others to be saved is very Warrenesque (”just believe and receive…”). Driscoll IS the seeker-friendly ecumenical movement in grunge rags.

    Please understand that I’m NOT claiming that a perfect theology and a perfect understanding of Christ are prerequisites for a person to be saved since none of us meet such requirements nor is such a concept found anywhere in the pages scripture. But I am saying that a person can intellectually assent to the truth claims of Christ and possess all the head knowledge of Biblical Christian orthodoxy and still be damned to a Christless eternity because what matters isn’t that someone claims to possess Christ, but that one is the possession of Christ.

    If there’s no evidence of the sanctifying indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit manifest in the life of a believer by the fruit of the Spirit, then one must examine the reality of one’s faith.

    There’s simply no such thing as a disobedient Christian as a pattern of life. True Christians don’t walk in continual, unbroken, unrepentant patterns of sin and rebellion against God’s Word. Certainly true Spirit-filled, born again believers can and do sin both miserably and frequently, but in contradistinction to the unregenerate self-righteous false believer who attempts to blame shift and justify his sin the true believer is broken and grieved by his sin and flees to the cross with a contrite and repentant heart.

    With this in mind what are we to make of Mark Driscoll’s well established, continual, unbroken, unrepentant pattern of ungodly, filthy, fleshy, worldly, smutty, sensual, devilish, Christ-dishonoring speech from the pulpit? In the light of scripture is this the mark of an approved under-shepherd of the Risen Lord of Glory? Is this type of reprehensible behavior representative of the Biblical model of a pastor-teacher who is to feed and water Christ’s little flock? Does homoerotic innuendo about the Lord Jesus Christ in heaven strike anyone as modeling godly, edifying, and Christ honoring speech?

    Of course not. In fact in the light of scripture such behavior and attitudes are manifestly demonic and blasphemous and as such it ought to be crystal clear that Mark Driscoll is in desperate need of repentance.

    In Him,
    CD

  34. well I do not think what-so-ever that Mark Driscoll is a person that needs to be done away with. Driscoll is absolutely on the right track and if you have not heard anything from him, it would do you well to check him out. I totally believe and know with all my heart that Driscoll is a man of God who is doing work for the Kingdom! I pray brothers and sisters that you would consider Mark Driscoll more closely and do not be alarmed by his “harsh” language because it is not that bad, and in most cases, Driscoll is right! Another thing is his church. How can you say he isn’t doing something good in seattle? I mean he has like 6 campuses now with upwards of 5000 people and is preaching the gospel. I think that it is like 40-50% of his members met Jesus in that church and is now serving for Mars Hill and for the community. Come on! Take another look at Dricsoll cause I think you will find that he is a Christ driven individual. I supprt Mark Driscoll all the way!

  35. “I totally believe and know with all my heart that Driscoll is a man of God who is doing work for the Kingdom!”

    Jeremiah 17:9 tells us why “knowing something with all our heart” is not the best way to determine if someone is a man of God or whether his works are for the Kingdom.

    “How can you say he isn’t doing something good in seattle? I mean he has like 6 campuses now with upwards of 5000 people and is preaching the gospel. I think that it is like 40-50% of his members met Jesus in that church and is now serving for Mars Hill and for the community. Come on!”

    Poor Noah and Jeremiah. They had zero campuses and nowhere near 5000 people. What failures.

    “do not be alarmed by his “harsh” language because it is not that bad, and in most cases, Driscoll is right!”

    In the Biblical requirements for a bishop, is there one that says that bishops are not to be “that bad?” If Driscoll is right “in most cases” would a Berean Christian just let the few cases where he is not right, slide by unmentioned? I mean, come on! Lighten up on your Biblical standards, people!

  36. I thank God for John Piper and Mark Driscoll, and I praise God for using weak men such as them, and me, and possibly even you. We all have our weaknesses and faults, but I thank God that Christians are those who always feel ours are the worst of all. I wonder how you feel about yours.

  37. Thanks for stopping by Mike Cleveland.

    I too am thankful whenever God chooses to use sinful men to bring glory to Himself as this is a truly amazing and humbling thing for the Infinite Creator and Judge of the universe to undertake to do for His own good pleasure!

    This being said I’m truly saddened when the same men who claim and profess Christ dishonor Him and bring shame upon His church by their unbiblical practices and teachings such as those under consideration within this particular thread.

    Can you kindly give me a chapter and verse where the Holy Bible states that “Christians are those who always feel ours are the worst of all” which you made in reference to our supposed “weaknesses” and “faults”? Maybe I’ve overlooked the verse where it is written that “Ye shall know them by the way the always feel their faults and weakness are the worst of all.” Actually that sounds like it could something from the Book of Mormon, I’m not sure – but is it Biblical?

    No?

    I didn’t think so.

    Look MC, in the light of scripture sin isn’t a simple “weakness” or an unfortunate character “fault”. Reading your comment makes it seem as though sin is something akin to an impolite habit like belching in public or perhaps an annoying and inconvenient illness akin to a lingering head cold.

    But the truth is that sinful fallen mankind’s “weaknesses” and “faults” as you euphemistically describe them aren’t in view at all in scripture, rather his totally abhorrent, completely abominable, utterly reprehensible, and unspeakably and radically corrupted sinful nature which will land him in eternal fiery torments apart from the grace of God alone is fully in view.

    If you’re sincerely wondering how I feel about my sin (not my “faults” or my “weaknesses” which are legion by the way) then I’d simply tell you to gaze upon the gory, offensive, stumbling block of foolishness that is the cross of Christ and behold the sinless, perfect Lamb of God brutally slain in my place and maybe then you may begin to understand why I can’t even properly put into words my eternal debt of gratitude and thankfulness to the One who came to seek and save unworthy sinners.

    What love is this that the King of Glory should set aside His heavenly throne and abandon the praise of veiled-face cherubim to take on flesh and live among His own perverse, rebellious, stiff-necked creations who would one day unjustly condemn Him to death and nail him to a cruel Roman cross? What love is this that He should out of the sea of reprobate humanity pluck an unworthy lump of sin and trespass such as I, lifting me like a glowing firebrand from hell’s licking flames? Amazing grace.

    In Christ,
    CD

  38. Greetings:

    Thanks for posting this powerful twin rebuke of Piper’s inconsistency and Driscoll’s irreverence.

    Piper demonstrates a HUGE disconnect between what he writes in his books and how he addresses men and issues like Driscoll, the aptly labeled “Cussing Pastor.”

    Thanks again,

    LM

  39. Thanks for this info about Driscoll. I’ve always felt a bit uncomfortable about him, enough to not even bother listening to his messages until I was somehow more sure about him. This is helpful for me.

    I am disheartened by Piper’s apparent stance on this issue.

    I will comment that it is crucial to point these things out as you are doing. The people with even the most Scriptural messages without the lives to back them up can be the most insidious wolves in sheep’s clothing. I have worked in the ministries of several wolves in sheep’s clothing and have seen the destruction they do, because no one believes that men with such great messages could be so destructive with their lives and how they lead others.

    I’m not by any means calling John Piper a wolf. I’m simply not in a position to have judged his life or his actions. I’m merely saying that God’s Word will always accomplish what it is set out to do (Is. 55:11), no matter who is speaking it. On the other hand, men’s lives will ultimately show whether they themselves possess Christ.

  40. You’re welcome Greg Demme, and I share in your disappointment regarding Piper. May the Lord strengthen him and open his eyes that he might repent of and flee from the sinful error he is presently enabling!

    In Christ,
    CD

  41. I agree except for one point: “American Christianity has become so emasculated and effeminized…”

    There is nothing effeminate about potty-mouthing. If anything, it is a reaction to the prissy, “old lady” atmosphere of some churches that could legitimately be described as emasculated. So they go to the other extreme and center the church around the sensibilities of hormone addled teenage boys.

    Piper’s and Driscoll’s churches are all male in their leadership, and I believe the foul language is one of the results when women and men are not both represented in church leadership.

  42. The bible is not clear on what happenened to Jesus between the cross and the right hand of God. Did he descend into hades where his soul was not abandoned by God, did he preach to imprisoned spirits in prison? Or was hades only the grave? I’m a firm believer in the truth and trustworthiness of the bible and from beginning to end I see no justification for the mud-slinging toward Mr.Piper for his verbage on such a matter. What did the apostles preach in Acts? Jesus as the Christ crucified. Let’s not be Pharisees thanking God for our lack of sin. Let us be begging for mercy from our knees, fully convinced that God is able to do all he promised. I sense no fruit of the spirit in many of the remarks above.

  43. All of you who are uncomfortable with Driscoll’s language likely would not be comfortable with reading scripture in the original languages. Scripture is full of vulfar and graphic language. In our english translations much of the language has been cleaned up and softened. I have not listened to a single message by Driscoll. I will have to investigate his sermons to see if he does indeed cross the line. I just want to caution you that the clean language that comes through in our translations of scripture is not present in the original languages.

  44. John M – There is nothing even close in the Scriptures when compared to the flotsam and filth that pours forth freely from Driscoll’s lips and pen. Listen to his words, read his writings, watch his videos and then come back to us.

  45. I wonder if any of the ppl taking you to task for your (ahem) “error” of publicly posting something like this have come to you privately first via Matthew 18?

    Thanks for posting it. I have similar concerns. Now they seem to be coming to light even more now that he has invited Rick Warren to speak at DG 2010.

    John M, Scripture is full of graphic descriptions and harsh language, but not innuendo like Driscoll has used.

  46. In my opinion John Piper spends an inordinate amount of time explaining his questionable associations.

    This in and of itself ought to be enough to raise red flags with the discerning, but then he takes his high-stakes game of theological chicken to the next level by going beyond questionable associations, and regularly inviting unorthodox and yes, even heretical speakers into his pulpit providing them with plum speaking engagements at his “big name conference”, thereby giving a platform (and tacit approval) to men who regularly and incorrigibly bring reproach to the cause of Christ.

    Frankly nothing the man does surprises me anymore.

    Sadly I’m forced to conclude that the real John Piper has finally stood up.

    In Christ,
    CD

    P.S. – Pope Benedict the XVI is also widely recognized as being a deeply theological and brilliant man; might we expect to soon hear the following excerpt emanating just before Piper’s Great Downgrade Conference next year?

    “I had mentioned some negative things earlier about high church liturgy, I said the black community didn’t get into it BUT the observation was the black community at least some of you, DID get into Marian Dogmas and the mystery of the Mass. Uh mainly from the cathechism of the Catholic Church and Vatican II, and Pope Benedict XVI, isn’t uh, non-Trinitarian BUT…uh…from St. Peter’s Basilica, he just conducted a Mass there, and spoke of the cross, and the mystery of transubstantiation, and I was moved. And do I, what do I think about all that?

    Well I put my cards totally on the table here, um I have invited Pope Benedict XVI to come to the Desiring God National Conference this fall. And he’s coming. Now I will get a lot of criticism for this from my Reformed brothers, because…not because Pope Benedict XVI is openly sitting in the seat of anti-christ. I don’t think he wears his theological distinctives on his sleeve, but would be probably theologically more at home with where I am than where an arian is. I believe that. What makes Benedict a problem, and I’m gonna… well, when I wrote him, here’s what I said. And he’ll probably watch this video too. I said the conference is called “THINK: The life of the Mind and the Love of God.” I want you to come. You are the Vicar of Christ on earth and I don’t think you are actually sitting in the seat of anti-christ. Come and tell us why thinking Biblically matters to you in your amazingly authoritarian approach to ministry.”

    “I want him to lay his cards on the table. I want him to tell us what makes him tick. Because he does come across in much of what he says and does as very results-oriented and authoritarian and theologically driven, and yet, I met him for the first time last year. I like him because of his hats. He wears bad hats. And anybody who’s willing to wear really bad hats in public, I like em. And we were talking beforehand and he said to me

    “I’m reading all the works of Gregory the Great this year. I pick a great early church father every year and I read all of his collected works”.

    “‘You’ve gotta be kidding me. Nothing you’ve ever said would incline me to think …’ (laughter)

    “So these guys are gonna go interview him tomorrow I think so you can quote some of these things. I do think he’s deeply theological. He’s a brilliant man. He wouldn’t have the church he does or the Cardinals, or the infallible magisterium, or all the influence he does, and of course he’s sitting in the chair of Peter, right? He is the shining Glory of God on earth. So I don’t think he’s all that bad. At root I think he is theological and doctrinal and sound. And what makes him tick? Actively and doing church? I intend to find out. So. I like him and I’m frustrated by some of his stuff.”

  47. I think that since Piper has gotten to “godlike” status, he feels he can do no wrong. After all, the evangelicals are supporting him no matter what he says or does. Not only that, but it’s easy to hide what you really believe until you have enough of a following then you can show your true self! Most people won’t really care or even notice a difference and those who do…well, they’re the few that will leave and they weren’t necessary in the end scheme of things. Really, who cares about them anyway? After all…they are the “FUNDAMENTALISTS” that complain about everything!

    It’s really sad that it’s come down to this but the more we hear about Piper, the worse it gets!

  48. I have learned that John Piper has invited Rick Warren as the keynote speaker for his 2010 Desiring God Conference.

    I can only hope and pray that you are simply not aware of the following expose and warning, regarding Rick Warren.

    I have written two books exposing Rick Warren. Southwest Radio has released my two speeches on Rick Warren on DVD and just reprinted my book exposing his global peace plan.

    I pray that you will take heed and actively oppose Rick Warren from speaking at this conference.

    Kindest regards in Christ,

    James Sundquist
    Director
    Rock Salt Publishing

  49. I cannot endure false doctrine, however neatly it may be put before me. Would you have me eat poisoned meat because the dish is of the choicest ware? It makes me indignant when I hear another gospel put before the people with enticing words, by men who would fain make merchandise of souls; and I marvel at those who have soft words for such deceivers…Their powerless theology cannot of itself arouse sufficient enthusiasm to enable them to build a mousetrap at the expense of their admirers, and therefore they profane the houses which your sires have built for the preaching of the gospel, and turn aside the organisations of once orthodox communities to help their infidelity. -Charles Spurgeon

  50. Will the link to the White Horse Inn be removed based on Michael Horton agreeing with John Piper’s decision to invite Rick Warren to speak at a Desiring God conference?

    Or, maybe I should rephrase – Is it true that Mr. Horton agreed with the decision?

  51. Hi,
    I have read the many differing opinions here and while I appreciate the site owners response to John PIper and Mark Driscoll and Rick Warren, I also think that perhaps Mr Piper has seen the way Christians shoot one another over the years and in his wisdom he may have decided to try to win these two by taking them under his wing and discipling them. In the account given by Rick Warren on what he believed, he was orthodox. However, I do believe that his praxis does not bear this out. But as one who has suffered at the hands of those who seek to keep purity at all costs I can appreciate that Mr Piper is endeavouring to show them love so that they may be won to the cause of Christ. If they are not yet possessors of Christ, then the hope would be that through these encounters they may see the glory of Christ and the Holiness of Christ and be drawn away from their false ideas. It is so easy to cut down but Spurgeon said that we are to woo people as Jesus woos them with cords of love. I think that any attempt to straddle the line between should we rebuke or woo with love is always going to be fraught with difficulties, but even though we might not always get it right, I do believe many will come to know the Lord through this approach. One of the things which drew me to Christ was the compassion he showed to people who were totally in the wrong and unworthy. Yet, He was so kind. He healed them and fed them and wept over them. He spent long sessions in prayer and was always ready to listen and love. We need to be a sweet aroma of Christ to a dying world. We need to love them sacrificially in the hope that the glorious salvation of Christ will be their inheritance.
    Mary

  52. Would the passage in Mark 9 vs 38,39,40 (John said unto him, Teacher, we saw one casting out demons in thy name; and we forbade him, because he followed not us. But Jesus said, Forbid him not: for there is no man who shall do a mighty work in my name, and be able quickly to speak evil of me.) be an appropriate way to address this problem I am not contending for totally accepting John Piper’s actions, but that he be given an opportunity to see whether these men are of God. If he were to continue on with them when they showed no signs of changing after he has first gone this route of loving guidance, then he would be in need of rebuke.
    Mary

  53. Mary,
    We saw one casting out devils in thy name – It can scarcely be supposed that a man who knew nothing of Christ, or who was only a common exorcist, could be able to work a miracle in Christ’s name; we may therefore safely imagine that this was either one of John the Baptist’s disciples, who, at his master’s command, had believed in Jesus, or one of the seventy, whom Christ had sent out, Luk_10:1-7, who, after he had fulfilled his commission, had retired from accompanying the other disciples; but as he still held fast his faith in Christ, and walked in good conscience, the influence of his Master still continued with him, so that he could cast out demons as well as the other disciples.
    Nowhere does this say he was a false teacher. Jesus and the disciples gave their fiercest rebukes to false teachers. JP has taken a known false teacher RW and tried to legitimise him, opening the door for many others to be deceived.
    We do not need JP to tell us if someone is of God when RW teachings and his fruits have already proven otherwise. Do you ever think of all those who are being deceived because of JP actions If JP wasn’t so well known and admired would you and others be defending him

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