Tuesday, June 2, 2009

party people or religious people? (quote of the day)

I just wanted to share with you the coolest sentence (pretty crazy run on sentence though) that I've heard all day. I heard it while mowing my grass tonight listening to Rob Bell's series = Jesus Wants to Save Christians. This was Part 7 (I've only got 1 more talk to go in the 8 part series).

It's from a series back in the day but now there is a book of the same title (Jesus Wants to Save Christians = buy it HERE) & same content. I actually have it borrowed from a friend. [thanks Brian! I need to get that back to you buddy! haha, just remind me!]

Anyway, here's what he said...
"By the way, a general rule of thumb - If people who want nothing to do with God and are hostile to church and are considered kind of on the margins... if they love being around you; and very wound up religious people who think that they're right and everybody else is wrong find you deeply disturbing and offensive... then you're being like Jesus."

Pretty awesome. My prayer is for Jesus to help me live this way, help me live like He did! So that the "party people"... the people who the other church peeps don't like... wanna be around me.

That's our prayer at Ridge Church. That people who don't like church would come to our church and really like it... and that God would change their world!


kreitsauce said...

I dunno. Rob Bell seems to like to force everyone into "either-or" categories. Either you welcome the lost or you drive them away by teaching truth. I happen to be a very opinionated person that thinks I'm right, but I also try to be gracious to everyone regardless of whether or not they think like me.

I don't think that you have to give up being convinced of truth and trying to convince people of that truth in order to win them. Jesus taught Truth in a convincing and compassionate way. I get what Bell is trying to say- that we shouldn't be like certain Fighting Fundies out there- but I also think that he overstates his case.

patrick mitchell said...

actually his WHOLE talk was about religious peeps who put everyone in "either-or" categories! I would disagree & say he definitely doesn't do this.

& I think it gets pretty dangerous to think we're right on more than just a couple things.

& i DEFINITELY don't think he overstates his case... i think he's right on! Churches that act like Jesus in this way are in the VAST MINORITY, so the case can't really be overstated.

thanks for interacting for sure! glad to see you thinking about it.

Kreitsauce said...

How is it dangerous to think we're right on things? Most doctrinal areas are absolutes accepted by the vast majority of Christians. Sure there are dress, music, and style standards that can vary greatly, but most of the Bible is intended to be known. Most areas of science are known. The same goes for history, and practically every area of knowledge. There's plenty of things that we can say with confidence "I know this to be true."

I also disagree that most churches don't act like Christ. I think that there are people in many churches that display the love of Christ. I think many are very inviting to those who haven't found Christ. What I have found is they don't know what to do with them after salvation. They don't teach the truths of God's Word.

Jeff said...


I have to be with kreitsauce on this one.

I'm reading a book now called "The Truth War" by John Macarthur and he makes some really good points based on scripture.

First he talks about and quotes an article in Christianity Today with Rob Bell and his wife.

Here is a quote from the article. (The Bells started questiong the assumptions of the Bible itself - "discovering the Bible as a human product," as Rob puts it, rather than the product of divine fiat. They go on to say they used to think they knew what the Bible said, "But now I have no idea what most of it means")
In his pursuit to make the church "a place for un-believers" he had to make almost every part of the Bible a grey part. The Bible is not grey. We have the Truth with us, we just have to be willing to discern it. Sure there are some small issues that we can say we are not sure what our conviction should be ,but the Bible always has an undertone for us being Holy as God is Holy ,so those small issues should be put under that test.

It also seems he is more against "church" than he is the world. If so what do you do with James 4:4 and I John 3:13 and many other verses that speak of the world hating Jesus and thus the world will hate us?

If you get a chance read that book if you have not already. I sincerely believe that there is a full out assault on Truth in the world today. I think it is dangerous if we as Christians are not sure what we believe is true and question everything. What do we have if we do not have Truth?

patrick mitchell said...

i've been out of town a lot & behind on blog comments, so sorry I'm just now getting back to it.

Kreitsauce - which btw, what is that name all about? I'm sure there's a story behind it...
Anyway, you said "How is it dangerous to think we're right on things? Most doctrinal areas are absolutes accepted by the vast majority of Christians."
I wouldn't say "MOST"... I would say the opposite = VERY FEW. I think we are very mistaken & probably very arrogant to think "MOST" doctrinal areas are "absolutes"... seems pretty crazy to me & I would be afraid to ever say that. Even if YOU think they're absolutes in your own thinking, surely you are aware enough to know that they're NOT accepted as absolutes by "the vast majority of Christians." I'm not sure why you would say that?

Also, a question for you - If Jesus came to chill at your church (or most churches for that matter... like I wrote) do you think He would say "Yep, these people are acting like me. I'm pretty happy with what they're doing."
I don't think so.

love the conversation bro...

patrick mitchell said...

Jeff - thanks for joining the conversation.
Not to hate on John MacArthur at all because I know he loves God & I got to meet him and he's pretty gracious in person. He knows more about the Bible than me & you put together will ever know... So I'm not going to pretend I'm even 10% as smart as him... (same thing goes for Rob Bell btw on the crazy smart part)
BUT, I will say that he is pretty famous for HATING on peeps who are all on the same team. I'll be straight up & say that pisses me off! But that's his choice I guess. I would also say he is one of the kings of ripping what one of these other guys say out of context so he can put them in a negative light. Not saying that's what he did in the book you're reading, but I have to admit that's my 1st thought now any time someone writes a Johnny Mac quote.

i.e.- Rob said he is "discovering the Bible as a human product"... I'm pretty sure I know what he means & I'm all about it. I think you and Johnny Mac would be too if he's saying what I think he is. BUT, did he really say "rather than the product of divine fiat." ??? i noticed you didn't have that in quotes. So, did JMac just add that? There's a big difference in discovering the human side of Scripture and saying you don't really care about the Divine side of the Bible... (which I know Rob wouldn't say).

"They go on to say they used to think they knew what the Bible said, "But now I have no idea what most of it means""
**This is almost my own journey exactly! Halfway through college I had the whole thing figured out and could've debated & proved my beliefs as "FACTS" about pretty much anything in the Bible. I was naive, young, pretty stupid, and arrogant. Now I hold a few things tightly in my hand & then I have a lot of loose opinions. Who knows if I'll ever figure it all out? probably not. Just being honest.
This is probably a conversation for another day though... probably a long one.

"The Bible is not grey. We have the Truth with us, we just have to be willing to discern it."
*I agree that we do have the Truth in the Bible, but we have to be ABLE to discern it. that's a whole other matter. obviously many Christians have some JACKED UP interpretations of Scripture! We've gotta remember that our "Theology" is just our thoughts about God... they are NOT God's thoughts. Our interpretation is in the middle there & that's a tricky thing. Again, prolly a conversation for another day. In fact, a blog on this topic is coming sometime... in the next year or 2 at least :)

Saying that it seems like Rob Bell is more against the church than the world is a pretty weird statement. Seems like it needs to be qualified a little better, but however it was meant... it's pretty out there. (Not really trying to defend Rob Bell either. don't think he needs defending.)

"I think it is dangerous if we as Christians are not sure what we believe is true and question everything."
***I totally understand what you're saying. & I want to agree & probably do in some ways a little bit. BUT a part of me also says that it is dangerous if we as Christians ARE sure what we believe is true and DON'T question everything. just think about it. maybe we can chat about it one day.

"What do we have if we do not have Truth?"
***We have God.

ok, that was all quick & unfiltered. at least wanted to talk about it with you.
I know a lot of Jeffs... which one are you?