Sunday, March 28, 2010

John Piper is taking a sabbatical

I confess to not being the hugest fan of John Piper. I don't dislike him and I even own a few of his books but his popularity at Mars Hill baffled me. I took it as a sign of what I had surmised as far back as 2002, that Mars Hill is basically Reformed Baptist but is loathe to identify as such. Well, if there are pastors on staff who are actually Arminian then I could say that they are a nascent addition to the broad denominational umbrella of "Baptist".

That was cool for a time but I have found over time that since my sympathies are more Presbyterian it was helpful to move in that direction (if Piper's popularity eludes me I totally get why people at Mars have enjoyed Tim Keller's teaching).
Long-time readers of this blog will know that I have had some pretty serious concerns about Mars Hill over the years but I stay in touch with my friends and family there and have even networked so as to get a capable musician in touch with a campus pastor. Last I heard (with my own ears) said musician is doing fine work at the campus and the pastor's sermon was excellent. I just needed some time to figure out that there is a no direction for me to travel. Moving in that new direction hardly means that I don't keep connections to the past. That may well be my strength and weakness, I am not the sort of person who likes to burn bridges where others burn bridges as soon as they find it useful and appealing.

I hope, since Driscoll has cited Piper as an example, that he will follow Piper's example at some point. Luke is mapped out enough that at some point Mark should consider an actual sabbatical. This seems to be the thing he has not really done. A month, I suppose, but eight months? Never. Mark seems to define himself by his work and it is going to remain a persistent idol he will struggle with. David struggled all his life with not being a particularly good husband or parent. Driscoll may struggle all his life with defining himself by his work and his being a family man. I have struggled my whole life with fear so I can at least credit Mark with not being afraid, though that can often be precisely what leads to problems. He's not afraid to make all sorts of stupid statements from the pulpit ... then again I believe every strength is generally also its own corresponding weakness.

I wish Piper well during his sabbatical.

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