So Adrian is able to write about how fantastic it is not to have comments on his blog: My First Week Without Comments.
In that post he is careful, as always, to only link to those who agree with him. How accurate a picture is that? Adrian links to Rick Ianniello: blog comments unscriptural who thinks he is wonderful and loves the scripture that Adrian appropriated to justify no comments. Fortunately Rick does have comments and so a more balanced picture emerges. Charity wrote
I think it’s a shame that Adrian equates disagreement with him to
quarrelsomeness. He seems to think that it’s ok for him to post
controversial material as long as he doesn’t give people the
opportunity to respond to him publicly.
If we look back we can see Charity has addressed this before on her own blog Still trying to understand: To debate or not to debate.
Adrian failed to link to IndyChristian’s post Loving Change .com: "The Audience Is Up To Something." that includes:
Question: At what point does a ‘blog’ become just another controlled institutional voice?
That is, when does it become just another ONE-WAY mechanism? (albeit cleverly leveraging this low-cost, hi-speed tool-of-choice of the common man)
suggest this may well occur when its sound becomes as finely tuned as
their microphone, such that no feedback enters the sound-system. It’s a
pure stream. The signal-to-noise ratio is superb. And the blog-er is
But is the Church? And is the mission well served?
And he points out the obvious flaw in Adrian’s choice of supporting scripture. Namely that it does not support him.
"And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness."
we all realize ‘comments’ can be troublesome at times. [translation:
time-consuming]. But likewise emails. And phone calls. And children.
And hospital visits. [...not to mention that thing of the past called
When this happened Peter Kirk, myself and others doubted Adrian’s view that he would hear and respond to challenges. In that we have been proved correct. I have seen no evidence that Adrian has actually engaged with any of the challenges of bad theology that have been made in a number of places over the last week. There is no accountability and all we get is that anyone raising issues is quarrelsome for daring to challenge things that are without fault.
It does seem that I have been more quarrelsome in the last week, I am not blaming it on Adrian stopping comments and I have been challenged on it (see the comments on my posts, plus some at Peter’ Kirks post: Gentle Wisdom » Driscoll’s Horrible Histories).
In my defence if anyone thinks I am negative about Mark Driscoll they ought to try this Ship of Fools thread. I guess that I feel frustrated that if only we were able to engage, if only we were all open to being challenged then what would emerge is better theology for us all. I don’t claim to be right on all things and I know I do get angry with those who do claim to be so.
One thing is for sure, it seems that every time I read something supporting complementarianism there are some obvious problems with the use of scripture (this week it was Mark Driscoll’s comments on Genesis 1 & 2, his ignoring anything on singleness in scripture, his turning of Songs of Solomon into commands, particularly for women). Now I never seem to be able to engage complementarians on these scriptural matters. I therefore simply conclude that they know they are skating in thin ice.
Complementarianism depends on lots of fast and loud shouting, on moving the targets fast enough that nobody notices that their foundations are built on sand and hence they will not respond to honest attempts to debate the issues. I think that is why Wayne is struggling so much with his brave attempt to explore the issues with Complegalitarian. It is also worth seeing Peter Kirk’s series "The Scholarly and Fundamentalist Approaches to the Bible" from last year:
- Part 1: Introduction.
- Part 2: The Fundamentalist Approach
- Part 3: Principles of Scholarly Exegesis
- Part 4: Exegesis of Titus 1:6
- Part 5: Scholarly Application
- Part 6: Conclusions
Of course this is not just happening with complementarianism. We see very much the same people shouting loudly and aggressively for Penal Substitution (I started saying arguing but of course it is not an argument as it includes no listening). Henry wrote about that recently: Threads from Henry’s Web » PSA: An Unbalanced and Ineffective View of the Atonement. Notice too Adrian’s comment on that post:
Well thanks for expressing ‘the other side’ as it were. I of course
dont agree, and sadly dont have time to explain why. I am glad, though,
that you have explained your position for me.
Adrian, thanks for expressing the problem so clearly.