Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The gods aren't angry at Rob Bell, but others are

Two weeks ago Rob Bell was in town on his "The gods aren't angry" tour. My wife and I went to hear him and, for the most part, had a good experience. I had not posted about it sooner, mainly because I've been busy with that end of the semester crunch at Seminary, but also because it's taken me a while to digest what he had to say.

Just today a friend directed me to a review of Rob Bell's nearly 2-hour presentation. You can read the review here. I think I agree with what the reviewer has to say.

Of note is the fact that recently Mark Driscoll (pastor of the other Mars Hill church) labeled Rob Bell a Heretic at the Convergent Conference in September. There's plenty out there in blogland about this now.

Here's my comment on the goings on. I'm not quite ready to label Rob Bell a heretic. I have listened to some of his teachings and even read his first book Velvet Elvis. I wouldn't recommend the book to believers who are not mature in their faith, but Bell definitely challenges us as believers to live out our faith. Further, his communication skills are formidable and his knowledge of Biblical backgrounds is impressive.

Have a look at the review. I'd love to hear what you think.


Anonymous said...

Driscoll has his own issues:


David said...

ummm...He disagreed with Rob and made a case for his disagreement...he did not label him a heretic...just to be clear. For that kind of fun check out my blog.

Matt Knight said...

Thanks for stopping by. I did find and listen to the podcast late last night. David, you are right he did not use the label 'heretic,' but did make his case.

I don't want to get into a position of picking one of these guys over the other -- both have some nice appeal, but both definitely have some negatives. I like the fact that they are engaging young America and interacting with the postmodern worldview. We'll see how this all plays out as the days go by.

McNeill Family said...

I have been following Rob Bell's teachings for a very long time and have seen and read almost everything he has done or written. There has been plenty to freak out about but I think that is what we are supposed to do with all teaching, cipher through and find the truth for yourself. No 1 man will ever be 100% correct! Too many people subscribe to and follow a church or a pastor and end up disappointed in the end. Personally, I have been challenged by his teachings to find out for myself and at the same time THINK and ask questions. I believe that is Rob Bell's intention. The old saying "don't throw out the baby with the bathwater" os still true today! And think of all the time people are spending arguing among believers rather than being about the Lord's business. It is what Christians today are known for...so sad!

The Preacher said...

Tit 3:10 A man that is an heretick after the first and second admonition reject; Someone needs to admonish this man. He preaches universalism just for starters.
God Bless

turquoiseamber said...

The preacher referred to universalim. I have researched universalism a little and don't understand how this relates to Rob Bell's teaching. Please can you enlighten me? Thanks

Matt Knight said...

Following the release of his most recent book, the charge of universalism has been leveled against Rob Bell.

Many are calling him a universalist because they believe this to be a doctrine that his latest book espouses. Universalism, at least within the context of Christianity, is basically a belief that everyone goes to heaven. Christians consider this a heresy because it invalidates the work of Christ on the cross.

Bell's book, in many places, seems to teach that, in the end, everyone goes to heaven. There are arguments also which seek to marginalize or deny the existence of a literal hell.

The issue with denying hell or declaring that everyone goes to heaven is, again, that it denies the work of Christ. The center of the Christian faith is that a)mankind, individually and collectively, is fallen and sinful - living in a state of rebellion against God; and b)God sent His Son, Jesus Christ to live and die as the sacrificial payment for sins; then c)anyone who places their faith in Jesus as the one who saves us from our sin and follows Him is saved from Hell (God's judgment for our sinful rebellion) and will be with God in Heaven.

Check out John 3:16; Romans 3:23; Romans 6:23; Romans 10:9-10

Hope that helps.