Here we go…again.

By now, many of you in the church world have likely heard about Rob Bells upcoming book along with the controversy it’s creating. The controversy was started primarily by the video I’ve attached below. Feel free to watch it & then continue reading my post.

Few people disagree that Rob seems to take a slightly universalistic tone to the Gospel in the video & the publishers description of the book 0nly reinforces that idea. Once the video was released, all hell (oh the irony) broke lose as Christians, once again, hated on one another & tore down a man who has done far more to advance the Gospel of Christ than many of those who will critique him.

I could take many avenues with this post but there is one overwhelming issue that has been gnawing at me since the news came out on Saturday. That issue? One of Christians tearing down other Christians. The book isn’t even out yet & people have already passed their judgement. When will we learn that the constant judgement & critiquing of our fellow brothers  & sisters, only further the stereotypes that Christians hate everyone including those who also happen to be professing Christians?

I don’t agree with ALL of Rob Bells theology then again, I don’t know that there’s ever been a person who’s theology  I  agreed with 100%. What I have always liked about Bell is that he’s a pot stirrer & a thinker. It’s these very two things that have driven many evangelicals crazy & yet this approach has opened doors for healthy conversations that weren’t happening many places before Bell came on the scene. I can’t take up for Bell on this book because, like many of it’s critics, I haven’t read it yet. What I can do is take up for a fellow brother who I feel has been maligned at every turn by many simply for asking questions no one else had the courage to ask.

I will buy the book & I will read the book. I will keep an open mind & remain hopeful that Bell will re-alling himself with orthodox Christianity as he so often does. If he does not, I will be disappointed but no matter what, I will NOT tear him down in judgement like so many others have done & will continue to do. I would hope that many of you will choose to take this path as well for I believe it is the only productive path we can take to enhance the Kingdom of God which is bigger than any theology, book, or individual.

Your comments are welcome.


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9 thoughts on “Here we go…again.

  1. L Taylor says:

    What do you make of 1 Cor. 5:12 here?

    I am, of course, with you on the idea of not prejudging something. Silly to judge what has not been read by almost anyone yet! Just curious though how you think this verse should be taken into account.

  2. Thanks for the comment & your perspective.

    I always go back to Matthew 18:15-19 here where Jesus clearly tells us that the starting point when we have fault with a fellow brother or sister is to go to them personally first. Unfortunately, I think many Christian leaders are the first not to follow Jesus words here by jumping on their blog, Facebook or Twitter account & berating those they disagree with.

    I believe people can express concern but to so openly oppose something they’ve never even read seems destructive to the Kingdom at best. I always try to think with the mindset of an outsider & in this case, I can’t imagine the person on the outside looking in leaving with a good taste in their mouth.

  3. Wes Molebash says:

    At this point, I wouldn’t be surprised if Rob Bell were a universalist. I’ll wait until I’ve had a chance to read the book before I make any judgments, but I’m prepping myself for the let down.

  4. If this whole thing was a marketing push, it worked wonderfully well because A LOT of people are going to buy this book!

  5. Wes Molebash says:

    I know, and that’s what’s giving me a little bit of pause. Perhaps he put out this video for the sole purpose of raising hackles. Then, when we read the book, he’ll hit us upside the head with a hip, yet orthodox, answer to these questions.

  6. Scott Welsh says:

    “Hip, yet orthodox” will stick with me the rest of my life :D. We do tend to argue points that do not fit within our worldview, instead of agreeing on what we are similar in. I think though, people are having an issue more with the video and not the book, even though they mention the book. Perhaps this is because the video isn’t saying a whole lot, but trying to change a perspective, and if there is one thing people hate changing, it’s there perspective.

  7. Great point Scott & anyone, who’s read, watched or listened to any of Rob Bell’s work know that he’s all about stirring the pot around the existing perspective. He most often lands back on solid ground but he asks what no one else will & that scares people. Case in point: the video for this book.

  8. SRivera says:

    The video teaser is Awesome! Got people Talking! Thumbs up for the marketing team! Looking forward to read it

  9. pstevep says:

    so i know i am a little late on the commenting on this. and i am going to be perfectly honest here, i have no idea who rob bell even is.. my comment will be directed toward the christians judging each other and hating everyone in general..

    having been in similar situations its a topic that strikes a nerve with me (as i am sure you know chris).. we as christians tend to have a sense of entitlement to judge everyone, and especially those who claim to be like us.. none of us will ever see eye to eye on everything, but i think thats part of the beauty in it.. we need to lean back to love instead of judgement, debate is good for the soul and for the church.. iron sharpenth iron.. but flat out rejection and judgement doesnt help anyone, and most often breeds hatred and resentment.. and if we cant work together without tearing each other down, why would anyone else want to work with us, or want to know the God that we claim..

    im working out a theory currently about our judgement as christians, so look for it in one of my future blogs, because i would love your opinion once i get it worked out chris..

    to quote burt bacharach “what the world needs now is love sweet love”..

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