Buzzard on Bell

Justin Buzzard has a written a great post on Rob Bell’s the gods aren’t angry tour.

His conclusion:

I wish I’d had an opportunity to speak with Rob after the message. Like I said above, I think I’d really enjoy hanging out with the guy. If I had gotten a chance to talk with Rob I would’ve asked him three questions/said three things to him:

1. Rob, I felt that your message mostly ignored what the Bible has to say about the reality and extent and depth of sin. Could you share with me what you believe the Bible teaches about sin?

2. Rob, what you had to say about Jesus and the cross seemed to suggest that you don’t hold to the traditional, penal substitutionary understanding of Christ’s death on the cross. Could you share with me what exactly you believe about the atonement, about why Christ died on the cross and what he accomplished there?

3. Rob, I felt like your message, especially for the non-Christians in the audience, left a wide open door to universalism. I would imagine with was unintentional. Could you tell me what you believe about salvation, heaven, and hell?


About Danny Slavich

I am a Christian husband, father, pastor, and poet. I lead Pembroke Road Baptist Church a multi-cultural, multi-generational church in urban South Florida.
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One Response to Buzzard on Bell

  1. Tato says:

    I read the article on Justin Buzzard’s Blog – interestingly enough he is right up the road from us here and I know one of the youth directors at his church from rafting… – I think the whole Rob Bell thing is bittersweet – sometimes he is right on and an effective communicator, but he just omits a little bit too much from what he says. I want to be able to see him speak in person some time to hear it for myself. I went through a phase where I listened to him a lot and I figure that since I have a decent theological background I was able to interpret his illustrations and ideas for myself, but not everyone does so.

    I am reading through a book by Gabe Lyons and Dave Kinnaman called “UnChristian” – examining what the “new generation” thinks about Christianity – they used to be part of the Barna group, so a lot of the book is statistics and stuff…

    He sees the problem with how the church is viewed today as being something to the effect of, “The real problem comes when we recognize God’s holiness, but fail to articulate the other side of his character: Grace.” He then says, “Embracing truth without holding grace is legalism, embracing grace without holding truth devolves to compromise.”… I think that Bell seems to fall heavily on the grace side of things – that personal holiness and repentance are secondary and thus can have solid things to say and reach out to younger people, but still fall short a bit. If we think that grace is the only part of the message we neglect the response that grace awakens in the heart: repentance and a turning to God (the holiness side or the coin).

    The difficult thing about this is that it is hard to critique because I obviously have my failings in what I neglect/forget to communicate theologically, but then again my audience is a lot smaller.

    With that said, I do like some of what Bell does, but more recently I have begun to see the downside to the message…

    Hey we should talk sometime and catch up, call me when you have some time free – I am free most of the time except
    Thursday nights – where I am agonizing over suffixes, vowel changes and of course construct forms… which I still cannot tell apart from the absolute form to save my life.

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