Now here is an interesting couple for you… Mars Hill (in Seattle, pastored by Mark Driscoll), and the Westboro Baptist Church. Westboro has announced it is going to picket Mars Hill – based on Driscoll’s teaching that God loves everyone and died for everyone (a Biblical position know as “unlimited atonement”). Last year we had a great discussion about The Westboro group they were scheduled to picket our college.
What makes this such an interesting get together is that both are know for their outspoken, and out of the main-steam views on social issues.
Driscoll has made a name for himself preaching tradition fundamentalist views. His brash style really stands out in Seattle, one our most socially liberal cities. Likewise the Westboro group has become know for it’s non-appologet view of God’s judgement against the rebellious social practices it sees in America today. Both sit outside the main steam on the biggest social issues of or culture today. Many would say that Westboro is further out-there in their views, but anyway you slice it, both rub popular culture the wrong way.
The average american bystander may see this as a case of the “kettle calling the pot black”. They would say both are wacked-out, hateful people. From a Christian point of view most of us understand the real distinction between Driscoll and Westboro.
Here are my questions:
1. Why picket Driscoll as opposed to Rick Warren? (I think I know the answer here)
2. How should Driscoll respond?
3. Is Westnboro right? Did Christ die for everyone or just the elect? (this may sound like a no-brainer of a question, you might say don’t you know John 3:16? But it has been a hotly contest idea among protests. Look up “limited atonement” and “unlimited atonement”)
Mars Hill response to planned picketing: http://blog.marshillchurch.org/2011/06/16/westboro-baptist-church-this-false-prophet-and-his-blind-lemmings-welcome-you-to-our-whore-house-for-god’s-grace-and-free-donuts/
PS – I thought this was a interesting insight about Westboro from John Stewart, who said, “The Westboro Baptist Church is no more a church than Church’s Fried Chicken is a church.”
(Mars Hill as Church is really “Mark Driscoll”, if Driscoll left Seattle, people would still follow him as an icon not Mars Hill)