One of the things that may be worth considering is that while there are commenters over at Throckmorton's blog who have written to the effect that everyone connected to MH and A29 are thick as thieves ... well ... if Vanderstelt's history of any association with Acts 29 goes back to 2002 then David Nicholas was still involved. It's potentially important to recall that based on Ron Wheeler's account ...
Nicholas was not out of the picture in the leadership of Acts 29. How and why Nicholas ended up out of the organization he co-founded has been one of the mysteries of its history. If Vanderstelt's selection and activity is going to represent a true change of direction then what Vanderstelt may know, if anything, about David Nicholas' disappearance from the Acts 29 Network might be worth sharing as a token of good faith. Just an idea for consideration.
Anyone who may actually have record of David Nicholas' correspondence to Acts 29 about Mark Driscoll might want to consider making it available to the public for consideration.
While the odds that people connected to the history of Mars Hill may not have "completely" clean hands now is not exactly the best time to impute comprehensive guilt by tangential associations. If anything there's some evidence that Driscoll has a history of taking drastically different approaches depending on his audience. Take this, for instance, click on the image of the headphones for the audio:
audio from August 24, 2007
[interviewer] I don't know if you remember when you did the assessment for me at the boot camp a million years ago [Driscoll says, "no"]. You pulled my wife and I into a room. And this is, like, you chewed me out the first time we met and you were the nice Catholic boy around my wife, which was really cute, it was a nice move. [Driscoll laughs] Suddenly she thinks, "He's a nice guy. Why are you saying he's mean?" and, and, you asked my wife, "Who is your husband's pastor?" and she started trying to name the guys of a three-thousand person church that was sending us out, and your answer was, "No, you're his pastor."
Can you talk a little about the dynamic of a family, behind the scenes, planting a church together? What does it look like to have a wife who is submitting to you but brave enough to speak into your life? What is it like to have kids who are planting maybe in an area that is not an area you would want to raise kids in?
Now we "could" get into the problem of this idea slamming facefirst into Driscoll's ideas about headship ...
Covenant and Headship
Part 4 of Proverbs
Pastor Mark Driscoll | October 21, 2001
There’s a lot of – men are still the head. That’s my point. They’re still in charge, and they still dominate. And you say, “Well, I don’t dominate. I just left.” Well, you still dominate in your absence. If you don’t raise your kids, you’re dominating their lives. If you don’t love her wife, you’re dominating her life. If you’re a delinquent who is just sort of ruining everything around you, you are dominating, and you are influencing everyone because you’re a head.
Why Driscoll would have shifted by 2007 to the idea that the wife is the pastor's pastor when he'd been so firm about headship all the way is hard to explain. The only way having the woman who is supposed to submit to and trust the husband could be the pastor to/over the husband in some authority fashion that would make sense if a person were to take all of Driscoll's ideas equally seriously would be to postulate that the wife can never really be the pastor over her husband and that by invoking the necessity of "respect" a man could have the wife be a pro forma "pastor" to him and he'd never have to actually have any men mentoring or pastoring him. But that's just one possible interpretive angle ... .
Meanwhile, while Driscoll has long since resigned membership and eldership within Mars Hill in the wake of being faced with a restoration plan ... only time will tell if Vanderstelt will consider the offered job worth taking in light of the scandals that have not yet been resolved. Anyone have confirmation that Vanderstelt has formally accepted the job? Wenatchee has been ... stuck in traffic a bit lately. :)
No sign of accepting the job on his twitter just yet ...
IF there's anything we've learned about Mars Hill this year from their Jesus Festival it's that just because they make a big public announcement and repeat it a few times doesn't mean it's actually happened or going to happen for sure. When Mars Hill leaders announce resignations those have turned out to be sort of accurate ... but when Mars Hill announces positively that they're doing something .... we can't be so sure. Let's wait until Vanderstelt himself to confirm that he's even taking the job before we get too confident about things that have been announced by Mars Hill or its would-be spin-offs. After all, Mars Hill Bellevue has a particularly dubious track record thanks to stuff about that International Paper Building, right?