So what the heck is that all about? In the first place, it takes into account "conservative theology" in terms of the motive force which causes anything to be anything at all.
I hope you notice that the brightest light here is Jesus. Jesus is the cause. Somehow, in all of his exhortation for a “conservative theology”, Driscoll has missed the point that Jesus is the cause: the cause of the Gospel, the cause of the Church, the cause of the church’s ability and willingness to go out to the culture, the cause for anyone in the culture to come out of the culture and into the body of (oops) Christ.
Jesus. Jesus Jesus Jesus!
Can I make myself clear here to say that Driscoll is not advocating – nor does he come close to advocating – some kind of bad new-age philosophy that excludes Jesus? Driscoll is not excluding Jesus from the Gospel – he is simply forgetting that unless we see the Gospel as His work for His glory, we are forgetting everything important about the Gospel.
My blog-friend and fellow #pros op Rusty made the statement here that
Furthermore, why is Mark Driscoll, a professing Calvinist, acting like an Arminian? As a Calvinist, why does he believe that our church services need to attract unbelievers for them to be saved? Why are we trying to impress unbelievers with flashy lights, the best sound systems, singing styles, and the list goes on.And I understand what Rusty’s saying here, but I’m going to say it a different way: Driscoll is making a terrible mistake of believing that he can look at what he’s doing as necessarily implying “Jesus”.
See: in the diagram he uses to set up his paradigm, he has the word “GOSPEL” (not in caps), and in that because it’s next to the word “CHURCH” (not in caps), I think he thinks he’s covered the bases. But the problem – which I have covered to some extent here and here, is that when people toss around the word “gospel” it does not necessarily have anything to do with “Jesus”.
So Driscoll comes across by using a faulty paradigm to advocate his point. The church should never be a function of secular society as Driscoll here means it – because its source has not anything to do with the secular culture. The source of the church, from the foundation of the world, is Jesus Christ, who intended to call it out from the moment of creation. In that, in our diagram, we have the bright light of Christ and the “shekinah” (oh boy, is that gonna get some mail) of the Gospel which Christ brings. The Gospel is nothing without Jesus Christ, and it comes from no place but Jesus Christ – who is God equally with the Father and the Spirit, and from whom with the Father the Spirit comes forth.
But that is hardly the end of the story – because the matter is not just about the eternal meaning and nature of Christ: it is also about the incarnation of Christ – and it is in that we find that Christ brings the Gospel to “culture”. When I say “culture”, I mean any culture – but as Paul says, to the Jew first, and also to the Greek or Gentile. That’s what that whole dotted line is in my diagram: it is the palpable place of contact that Christ makes in order to bring the Gospel to culture. And when I say culture, I also say this: any culture that Christ is coming to is inherently sinful, inherently lost, and needs Him a lot more than He needs them.
He’s God. They need Him whether they recognize it or not, and whether, when they finally are touched by the Gospel, they receive it.
It’s been a long day here, and I have more to say as you can imagine. I’ll be back tomorrow to bore you some more about my diagram and complain more about Driscoll’s ideas about church and revelance.