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Victory! 163 signatures about the Global Fund at wank website change.org!
Warren, I had an interesting back and forth with the folks who answer the Go! e-mail address. I sent it to your e-mail address from your website. I did not want to post it as it is a little too much 'pot-stirring' for my taste. However, if you could confirm the suspicion (that'll make sense if you read it), I feel it would undergird the previous post with the memo and this one regarding the ECFA.
Nothing has shown up yet...
Just tried again, maybe with a better address. Not a huge deal unless it is confirmed. If confirmed, to me it is pretty significant. I'll leave it up to you to decide that. Thanks.
Hi Folks, one for a while. Intentionally trying to back off. I have a suggestion for any of the folks who have come on here and tried to say or might think Warren and his commenters are on a witch hunt. Send them to the petition link above in this post. Then send them links to the 3 big letters (Acts 29, 21 Former Elders and 9 Current (formerly) elders). If someone can read those things and still support the leadership at MHC, you might ought to think about discontinuing that discussion quickly.I am afraid for all at MHC right now. I do not think of grown responsible people as unwitting victims in being a member of MHC, but they are sheep and like it or not Jesus wants them taken care of and not taken advantage of.If any MHC folks or leaders are reading, please know that it may feel like you are going through a 'tough season' on the inside, but from the outside it looks like you are being completely duped and manipulated. The leadership's silence makes that even more apparent. Remember that the truth always stands up to scrutiny so fearing blogs and news or listening to a leader say don't look at that stuff is a way to control your intake of things that should fall if scrutinized and found untrue. They are not falling. They are credible. They are coming from your own as they leave, not from the Devil or the world. Rethink where you are. MHC is not THE Church it is a church. MHC is not standing up to scrutiny right now and the charges against them seem to be standing firm and holding water. Praying for you all. That's it for now. Thanks again to Warren and commenters with sincere hearts. Keep praying.
I'm trying to work this one out before the LORD. There is certainly no sin in reading and informing oneself. Is there sin in reporting one's experience without using names if some folks at M.H. can figure out who I'm talking about and those I mention feel exposed? Also, I did make an assumption in one of my comments. I said that our cg leader had gone to a cg sync (leaders meeting) where the husband said that his wife had asked a question through him; not on her own. I wasn't there and based on my prior experiences I assumed that meant that she was "submitting to his headship and remaing quiet" and letting him ask questions on her behalf. My assumption included my thinking and stating on the blog here that his wife didn't ask the question herself because to do so would put her in a position of being "labeled" a "daughter of Eve.I was wrong. In speaking to the young man, he described that he had asked the question for her because she wasn't present, and that there were other women asking questions. I don't know whether those women were married women or single. I made a wrong assumption (for which I will ask his forgiveness) based on the experiences I've had and stories I've heard from a few friends. So, my assumptions have resulted in untruths. I am learning. I've avoided some tete de tete communications because of previous experiences that I allowed to silence me. It's a fine line to figure out what part of experience is to play into future decisions regarding openness and seeking further understanding and where Jesus just calls us to walk in the light until the doors are absolutely shut, or deeper understanding and peace is arrived at within parties. Prayers appreciated. Also, please forgive me for communicating falsely based on my assumption. I have no intention of throwing the baby out w/ the bathwater; i.e., not communicating my experiences. But I will work harder at speaking truth in environments and to people where I believe there is a foundations strong enough to bear mutual and respectful hearing out. The wisdom of the saints appreciated...any thoughts I'll be happy to take before the LORD. Praying.
Ruanna, (You will always be ruanna to me! That is the name that brought us reconciliation when we first started... ha ha)... Kidding aside. I have been very much intentionally vague, but as a Pastor, I can say this single paragraph right here says so much. I do not mean its conclusions or implications, I mean your own introspection. It shows that there has been emotional trauma, and I believe it shows the care of the Holy Spirit in your life. You have done what may be the most important thing - the thing I wish the leaders in this mess would do - you asked the question of yourself, "Could I be wrong?" Instead of parroting the baloney, "Nobody's perfect" or "We are only sinners saved by...", you have looked at your actions through discerning eyes and asked God to genuinely search your heart. You have no idea how valuable that is to this observer. I don't mean saying, "I am wrong" as victims of abuse feel the need to... that can be unhealthy. It is the simple asking.I admit in the beginning there was some morbid fascination in this for me. I was dangerously close to troll-status even if in some weird sanctified way. No longer. Jesus' name is being dragged through the mud and His people with it.I think it was MacArthur that said once, "The first thing I do with any criticism is believe it." He said if it is true, he needed it to repent... if it was false, the Lord would vindicate him and he did not need to. Valuable! You have been thoughtful and careful. Ironic you are here wondering if you have wronged when we are pretty near certain you have been wronged. That is how God's people do things - well. MHC leaders and members would do well to take that step - the asking honestly. Not necessarily to come to any conclusions or agree with anything we say here, but just to be open to true spirit-led discernment. We have to really say with David, "Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me, and know my anxieties; And see if there is any wicked way in me, And lead me in the way everlasting."Not make excuses, call all critics liars, not threaten them with bus speed-bump status, not entrench ourselves, not hide out, not blame, and so on and so on.You sound like you desire to walk in the light. Hope the Lord uses it to teach those who should have taught you.
This. All of this.
I agree - what I have also been waiting for is the introspective questions and acknowledgements.
I think this behavior (Ruanna's & John's comments) is what the vast majority of believers are hoping for.
I am continually struck by the grace and heart that someone so wronged as Joanna Petry shows in her comments. That is what makes those just out for blood & guts so glaringly obvious...and they eventually slink away because no one joins their "team."
We want what's good for the Kingdom of our Lord. No matter what the cost.
I praying though that this is a resolution we get to see, and not one that those under the bus have to wait for heaven to experience.
One thing that was sooo helpful for me in my healing process to get out of the confusion, false guilt, and mental circles was to continually ask God, "What is the truth? What is the lie?" I needed to know what the lies were that I was believing so that I could replace them with the truth. There is freedom in this.
"I think when we get to heaven we will find out that God Is not nearly as pissed off at us as we think he is." If I ever had my pastor speak to me like that I would have told him to grow up, clean up his mouth, and learn what reverence is when talking about our Holy God. Then I would have left the church. These "cool, hip, what's happenin' now self-appointed pastors have no fear of God before their eyes, which shows in their behavior and conversation because no fear means no wisdom.
Something tells me by your response that you think my comment was frivolous. It also tells me that you must be young or stunted in your faith.
First of all, my comment was based on what you quoted your pastor as saying. If he is a man of righteousness and of the Word, he should be offended by what you said he said. My opinion is that you might be surprised at how many Christians are offended by such gutter talk. You owe that pastor an apology.
I assume you are a woman by your name, and I don't know your marital status, but I don't know of any real Christian men who are impressed by that kind of language coming out of a woman.
Ephesians 5:4 Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving.
James 1:21 Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.
Mrologia. This is the word used for foolish talk in the bible. It is where we get the word moron. It is low level talk that shows a lack of intelligence.
Sorry Nancy. You seem to think foolish talk is minutia in your life as well as others. If that were so, God would not have addressed it. If you are giving your grace to anyone for whatever sin, you are breaking the Lord's commands. Grace is given as a result of repentance. Your problem seems to be with God's Word. If you use your argument up against God's Word, you fail miserably.
It must be so very confusing. Reading the testimonies on the We Love Mars Hill blog, there is a marked difference, in most cases, among those who left a while ago and the ones who only recently left. Some of the recent departees even acknowledge how confused they still are. It makes me incredibly sad for them.
Given the culture and teaching at MH, your assumption was a reasonable one to make. That is not sin. Your willingness to acknowledge your assumptions, love the truth and others by talking with the young man, correct the "wrong" thinking, and ask for forgiveness all show humility, integrity, and maturity. It is these things that matter and constitute healthy relationships. Well done.
You are forgiven through Jesus's blood.
If people fear being "exposed," then I would have two concerns: 1) are you revealing something that was expected to be confidential? 2) are they doing something they want to hide, in which case it may need to be exposed?
I'll echo the other comments here and also add, as someone who tends to make assumptions and jump the gun when writing blog posts: I think it's important that, should you decide to tell your story by posting it publicly (which I hope you do) pray for guidance, asking God to help you be completely honest and above reproach.
Go through a couple drafts, asking trusted, understanding friends to help you spot anything that doesn't meet your criteria.
If you are worried about revealing others' identities, perhaps you can run those sections by the persons in question and get their go ahead. If not, leave those sections out.
Stick to your own experience as much as possible and speak from the heart. A simple prayer that helps me get out of the way when I'm writing (and lets God in) is, "Your words, my pen."
Seems to me that anyone who'd cast aspersions at you for very mildly and unintentionally misstating things in a manner that isn't really untrue of the MH experience as a whole would be one who is straining gnats and swallowing camels.
Denise--not all mistakes are sins. Intentionally misleading people might be categorized as "bearing false witness," but if you spoke something based on a mistaken impression, I wouldn't classify that as a sin.
(As an aside--one of my personal peeves with the MH culture is their tendency to classify things as 'sin' that the Bible doesn't. i.e. "the sin of questioning." Questioning is not a sin. I even started looking through scripture for the list of everyone who 'questioned' God and wasn't smote.)
I have appreciated your insider's view, and how your participation here puts a real "face" on what MH members are experiencing. You have my prayers and I hope you'll continue to participate with us.
Yeah I've never understood the "sin" of questioning.
Isn't that the whole point of being a Berean?
Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true. (Acts 17:11 NIV)
Thanks so much for the caring, wise, biblical and God honoring advice from all. By His grace I am learning and growing together w/ my husband through this experience. I pray the LORD will help me to love his truth and heed the counsel of the saints here in every way. You've truly blessed me. :)
Denise, you have been a blessing. Thanks for being so courageous and open about your experience. It has given me hope for those still there. As always, we must trust in the Lord and you are a shining example of that.
I hope those folks you speak of listen to Paul:1 Thess 5:21 Test all things; hold fast what is good.and John:1 John 4:1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.
A change.org petition, is the lowest rent form of protest, and apparently desperation is characterized by lowered standards. The first petition still hasn't reached the half way goal. This 'petition' has a goal of one hundred. Laughable..
Here, let me give you the opportunity to formulate a more cogent comeback than 'I know you are, but what am I". If this petition is calling for MH to 'walk in the light', why is no one's name attached to it?
Trying to minimize or avoid responsibility by falsely asserting that the opposition is anonymous.. Mark? Is that you?
All the names on the petition are listed; I was able to see the list.
says the person who does not attach a name to his shots...
Mark and the elders of Mars Hill were warned by multiple people to repent and turn away from sin. Many of them refused. Now they will reap everything that is coming to them. It is the height of arrogance to think they could hide all of this from God.
21 See how the faithful city has become a prostitute!She once was full of justice; righteousness used to dwell in her— but now murderers!22 Your silver has become dross, your choice wine is diluted with water.23 Your rulers are rebels, partners with thieves;they all love bribes and chase after gifts.They do not defend the cause of the fatherless; the widow’s case does not come before them.
Rebels who scratch ears and create new Law, not in His Word.
Obey your elders. Stay off the internet. Go and change the gospel so as to blend into the world. Claim that Jesus is giving special blessing to MH, which makes us set apart from other churches. Agree with false teachers and call it "unity". Avoid true unity with sound doctrine, and call those asking for Christ and Christ crucified "Hyper Calvinists" and "Fundamentalists". Shun those who disagree and later call them Anonymous.
Become experts at worldly sorrow and call it "repentance".
Having come out of a hyper Calvinist church, I'm not sure what you're saying. Does MH not teach Christ crucified (and resurrected)? I thought they were big on confession and even sin sniffing. But then I am an outsider.
I can say that our hyper Calvinist ex-church was big on beating our breasts and confessing our sin every Sunday. There was always a scripture read afterwards for absolution, but the confession part was usually way longer. Does that imply a little bit of atonement covers a multitude of sins, or does it imply more emphasis on sin than grace, or was it just that way, no implicit meaning?
Thank you. That makes sense.
Sin was something we were to share with Community Group leaders and Redemption Group leaders, but we were not regularly shown that we were totally forgiven by His blood alone. We had to negotiate our sin, be "redeemed" from our sin, and sometimes have old sin lorded over us by pastors, elders and group leaders. There were both legalistic qualities- to their rules- as well as antinomian qualities- worldliness.
CGs became more and more about what Mark said in the sermon rather than what God's Word was truly saying. RGs were sinners digging into each other's sins and mindsets but very void of Scripture. I was a RG leader and we were not taught to take everything to Scripture. Rather it was a kind of shame each other out of shame thing.
(That should read "former leaders")
Thank you for this clarification. How sad. Sounds like a control mechanism, a form of blackmail, even. Our former admitted to sin, but only in the past tense. "I used to struggle with anger..." "I was foolish in those long-ago choices..." They could never apparently admit to current struggles.
I have heard some of the ways their kids are messed up , but they work very hard to present a perfect exterior.
That's a heartbreaking comment, Guest. I've been really troubled by the Mars Hill commenters here who 'reason from Driscoll' rather than reasoning from Scripture. I hope you're free indeed, now!
Which community group did Driscoll belong to?
Ha, good question.
be free!: "It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery" (Gal 5)
sorry you had to go through that. You describe tactics I have heard are used in other places in the name of "church discipline" that completely misses the love of Christ.
Praying for you too. Love in Christ.
Once again do as I say, not as I do per MD. He has "repented" of his "old" sins thus they can't be held against him anymore....*insert cough/BS/cough here*
Perhaps my comment only makes sense to me..my apologies I left in 2013 and at the time I was desperate to hear the Gospel. Rather, we hear that God loves us and that there is grace, but rarely did Mark take us to the cross. Instead, he took us to "to do" lists. Application. We were taken to look at ourselves instead of to Jesus' finished work.
Also, when I left, and I listed my reasons for leaving, Dave Bruskas responded to my letter and warned me against being a hyper Calvinist. I am not sure exactly what you mean by Hyper-C nor what he meant. Although when I think back, I think he was reacting to my becoming more of a cessationist.
My comment above may not make sense to others perhaps. My real point was that I firmly believe that Mark et al create new rules. Neo-nomian, rather than giving the true Law and then the true Gospel. Maybe I can edit out that part. I do stand by the "obey your elders" law and perhaps you experienced that also, if you were on the inside of MH. I am still processing and still healing, by His grace.
Oddly enough, your description of MH fits well with our former church. To-do lists, for example. Application. Examination of our sins. New rules. Twisting the scriptures to come up with formulas for living. "Biblical" this and "biblical" that... how convenient a club for leadership and others who were "all in" to hold over the heads of others! If you didn't follow, you were unbiblical and in sin!
That's it! You describe it so well! Was your church "Acts 29"? Did your pastor "vision cast"?
No, but he was great friends with Doug Wilson, Steve Wilkins (of Federal Vision fame), Tim Bayly, and others of that ilk.
I still don't understand what FV is. There were some interesting interviews of Driscoll by DW. This issue of MD saying he had heard from God was handled very patiently by Wilson.
It's "works" required for salvation. Would want anyone to read my comment of a minute ago and think I said it works.