Archive for category velvet elvis

NT Wright on Hell

Dan Phillips has an excellent post this morning on NT Wright and his view of hell and eternal judgment.

For several years now, many in the Emerging Church have been looking to Bishop Wright to draw up some trickery for their Emerging-play-book.

Some of Wrights comments about hell sound eerily similar to some of Rob Bell’s. See here and here. Is Coach Wright calling the plays in from the sidelines?


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Rob Bell and Marcus Borg…

Ken Sliva wrote this excellent piece this week.

In his book Velvet Elvis, Rob cites Borg at least twice in a positive fashion…if you are a Christian, this should trouble you!


Brian McLaren, Rob Bell, Spencer Burke: More on hell and universalism

Anyone who operates under the law of non-contradiction recognizes that a given proposition cannot be true while its corresponding and opposite proposition is true as well. Postmodern soteriology is at least toying with this line. Many in the ECM are attempting to flirt with universalism while upholding a doctrine of hell. Rob Bell, for instance, writes in Velvet Elvis, Read the rest of this entry »


Emerging/Emergent Quiz…

Here’s the game. Read the following quotes and give yourself a score on how many you disagree with (you are not saying you disagree with me, but rather with the quotes in question).  

1. “The Bible is one f______ scary book.” – Tony Jones, national coordinator of the Emergent Villiage ( I encourage you to comment on Tony’s new blog and let him know what you think of his statement.

2. Steve Chalke and Brian McLaren have both suggested that the subsitutionary view of Christ’s atonement is like “cosmic child abuse.”

3. Rob Bell in Velvet Elvis, “I have been told that I need to believe in Jesus. Which is a good thing. But what I am learning is that Jesus believes in me.”

4. Steve Chalke in the Lost Message of Jesus: “God affirms the orginal goodness of mankind.”

5. Rob Bell in Velvet Elvis, “God has an incredibly high view of people.”

6. “The problem, I think, at least in the Christian tradition, is that grace always seems to have no meaning apart from sin. The two concepts are always linked. Its not that I think sin is a myth or that everyone is perfect; it’s just that I believe linking grace to sin detracts from its beauty and intensity.” Spencer Burke, Heretics Guide to Eternity. Hmm, that’s an interesting position in light of Titus 3:3-4, 1 Corinthians 6:10-11. and 1 Timothy 1:13-14.

7. “Because in the kingdom of God, fun and play are important things…because in the kingdom of God, dignity and pride are also important things.” Brian McLaren, The Secret Message of Jesus.

8. “Moses was what we might call a revolutionary political leader and liberator, a cross perhaps between George Washington and Nelson Mandela.” So, in light of Hebrews, Jesus is not a better mediator than Moses; rather, He is a better revolutionary – a better cross between Washington and Mandela?

9. “. . We are already in unless we want to be out. This is the real scandal of Jesus. His message eradicated the need for religion. It may come as a surprise, but Jesus has never been in the religion business. He’s in the business of grace, and grace tells us there is nothing we need to do to find relationship with the divine. The relationship is already there; we only need to nurture it. Of course, growing up, I had a much different concept of grace. I grew up in an environment where grace was described as ‘unmerited favor.’ The only problem was that getting this ‘unmerited favor’ still required doing something – namely, ‘asking Jesus in your heart’ or praying a prayer.” Spencer Burke, A Heretics Guide to Eternity.

10. Steve Chalke suggests that the following from a children’s VBS is not the gospel:

(1) God created me. (2) I am a sinner. (3) Jesus came to die for me. (4) Until I accept him as Lord and Savior I cannot receive the abundant life God has for me.

He then presents what he believes is the gospel:

(1) Jesus explained that God loves them unconditionally. (2) God longs for them to be part of his plan for creation. (3) Jesus teaches that no-one can keep them from this destiny except their own decision. (4) Jesus’ death and his resurrection form the dead prove that he was telling the truth so we can trust him.

How many did you disagree with out of 10? Here’s the scale; call me harsh if you must:

0-3/10: I’d bet my money that you are emergent/emerging. If you don’t like the label and consequently won’t fess up to it, you’re proving my point.

4-5/10: I’d call you a soft evangelical with very little biblical/theological discernment.

6-8/10: You probably like to think of yourself as balanced. After all, Jesus was balanced right?

9/10: You are a fundamentalist or a conservative evangelical, but you thought I was unfair with one of the quotes above. I can deal with that.

10/10: Congratulations; you agree with me. What does that make you?  


Critique: Rob Bell…Velvet Elvis (Movement 6)

Again, it is not my purpose to go on an anathamatizing rampage or type angry words — but in this case, a “John 2” type of anger would be completely warranted. At times, my disagreements with Rob have been simply methodological. However, in this case, my issues with Rob are purely theological; the gospel is at stake. Movement 6 reveals the heart of Rob’s soteriology.

It is dark. It is scary. It is wrong. Read the rest of this entry »


Critique: Rob Bell…Velvet Elvis (movements 4-5)

Movements 4 and 5 left me feeling both sick and outraged. Did Rob say some good things? Absolutely. However, amidst some good thoughts, Rob mixes in some more man-centered refuse — yet again, he describes a god who has faith in mankind (to see my previous discussions on this issue, click here).

Rob writes (page 134),

God has incredibly high view of people. God believes that people are capable of amazing things. Read the rest of this entry »


P.S. Velvet Elvis (movement 3)


Rob writes,

It is possible for music to be labeled Christian and be terrible music.

When I first read that phrase, I agreed — that is, until I read what came next.

He continues,

It could lack creativity and inspiration. The lyrics could be recycled cliches. That “Christian” band could actually be giving Jesus a bad name because they aren’t a great band. Read the rest of this entry »

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