My Favorite Mark Driscoll Quotes

For 6 days only–if you haven’t seen this, you MUST:

“There is a strong drift toward the hard theological left. some emergent types want to recast Jesus as a limp-wrist hippie in a dress with a lot of product in His hair, who drank decaf and made pithy zen statements about life while shopping for the perfect pair of shoes.  In Revelations, Jesus is a prize fighter with a tattoo down His leg, a sword in His hand and the commitment to make someone bleed.  That is a guy I can worship.  I cannot worship the hippie, diaper, halo Christ because I cannot worship a guy I can beat up.  I fear some are becoming more cultural than christian, and without a big Jesus who has authority and hates sin as revealed in the bible, we will have less and less Christians, and more and more confused, spiritually self-righteous blogger critics of Christianity.”

“Our God is a little offensive! Most of the people who REALLY liked Him got killed!”

“You have been told that God is a loving, gracious, merciful, kind, compassionate, wonderful, and good sky fairy who runs a day care in the sky and has a bucket of suckers for everyone because we’re all good people. That is a lie… God looks down and says ‘I hate you, you are my enemy, and I will crush you,’ and we say that is deserved, right and just, and then God says ‘Because of Jesus I will love you and forgive you.’ This is a miracle.”

“Here’s the deal: You are a freak! Just be cool with that.”

“You wanna be counter-culture? You wanna be a total rebel? Get a job! You wanna be counter-culture, totally alternative, radical? Be a virgin until you get married…to a person of the opposite gender. And then stay married and pump out some kids and pay your taxes and read the Bible, you freak. You’ll be just totally a rebel.”

“God picked a junior high girl [to be Jesus’ mother]. Jesus was raised by a woman who today, we wouldn’t even let her lead a bible study at a high school. But she could raise God.”



94 Responses to “My Favorite Mark Driscoll Quotes”

  1. Michelle says:

    Love the top quote!
    Too many people live in fear of being ridiculed

  2. These are terrific – I’m not familiar with Driscoll, thanks for the intro. Great follow up to “wrong to be right”.

  3. Heather says:

    I wish I could be more pro-Driscoll. Some of what he says really is pretty good.

  4. Kelly L says:

    Good quotes. I am unfamiliar with this man…must google him. I like the counter culture one the most—maybe because I have a 9yr old who is already being inundated with sexuality WHILE we ban most tv programs!

  5. I’m gonna be contrary here: After having attended Mark Driscoll’s church services (I live in the Seattle area), I just can’t stomach what he has to say. I think the spirit behind a lot of what he says is good, but the way he presents it is often offensive in the extreme. He needs to learn some tact and grace. I’m sorry, but discussing explicit sexual matters like a sex therapist with your congregants in order to make the point that sex is good? There’s certainly a more appropriate way to deal with that. Want to make a point that Jesus wasn’t wishy-washy; you don’t have to insult people and mock them in order to do it. SWEARING at your congregants during a sermon??? Excuse me??? Since when did God say it was okay to curse as long as you were righteously indignant when you did it??? Sorry, I’ll get off my soapbox now.

    • Ben Jensen says:

      Isn’t it awesome that so many people are coming to hear about Jesus they have to broadcast? Which they no longer do and haven’t done in over 2 years. But ultimately all those people are hearing about Jesus.

  6. I don’t mean to totally bash the man. If he was only a google presence in my life, I would probably not care so much. But, living in Seattle with a dozen or so churches that have a service that just broadcasts him live on a big screen…It’s something of a hot-point for those of us around here.

  7. Jess in Peru says:

    The one about being counter-culture was VERY Funny and unfortunately VERY true! 🙂

  8. Jennifer says:

    Don’t worry, Heather; I agree completely.

  9. Jennifer says:

    Oh, and Bethany too, I meant to mention.

  10. Word Warrior says:


    I agree that he can be tactless and “over the top” sometimes; I certainly don’t agree with all of his methods or vocabulary during a sermon.

    Still, a lot of what he has to say is good, and I’ve quoted often from people with whom I don’t totally agree on every point.

    I think a part of me would rather hear a preacher curse in his righteous indignation than hear a wishy-washy, toothy-grinned man defame the gospel by refusing to speak the truth. *shrugs*

  11. Heather says:


    I tend to agree with you but don’t have the personal experience to back my perspective. My knowledge has been limited to video clips and written articles (both by and about him). On the one hand, I want to believe that there is simply a measure of immaturity that God needs to remove. On the other hand, I feel more than a little nervous about endorsing anything MD currently says because of his controversial way of approaching such things as you mentioned (his treatment of the Song of Solomon seems especially irreverent to me). I know we all have blind spots but I understand that Scripture indicates that teachers (those who speak with authority and have followers) should be especially vigilant against unwholesome speech (James 3:1-2.

    As I said, I wish I could be more pro-Driscoll….

  12. Word Warrior says:


    Here is a video where Mark D. talks about why he uses harsh language…take it or leave it 😉 I appreciate that he has thought it through and at least gives an answer for his language.

  13. Amy Jo says:

    Jesus the hippie? Or…Jesus the tatoo dude? Both are pretty cultural (as opposed to counter-cultural) if you ask me. Just depends on whose culture. Driscoll likes the the tatoo culture, so he can accept that view of Jesus. Driscoll obviously doesn’t appreciate the hippie culture, so he rejects that idea of Jesus. I saw a Bible tract one time called, “If Jesus were here he would ride a Harley Davidson.” It was intended to be given out during the huge Bike Week in Daytona. Of course, the idea, is to make Jesus culturally-relevant to those folks attending. So, Jesus the hippie, Jesus the tatoo dude or Jesus the Harley rider — anyway you look at it, it is an attempt to make Jesus more palatable to what “culture” appeals to us. In reality, Jesus was a Jewish man. No tattos. Not wimpy. Probably pretty strong (a carpenter — of mostly stonework for those interested), but nothing to be desired to look upon. Or so the Bible says. Jesus was sent not to “look” like anything cultural other than the culture in which He was divinely placed. The point of Jesus the man was to point us to God the Father, and make a way for that realtionship.

    I don’t think that we have to make Jesus a “tatoo-sporting, manly dude” in order to embrace His teachings. Nor do we need to label ourselves “freaks” or “radicals.” All this does is place the focus on us, instead of Him. We just need to obediently follow Him. That’s enough. No labels — or tattos — required.

    (Disclaimer: I am not opposed to tattos. I don’t think that they are sinful. I don’t have any. My husband, personally, thinks that they make a woman — his woman — look less than lady-like. Your man, however, may think that they are awesome. If this is the case, enjoy yoru ink, sister!)

  14. Word Warrior says:

    Amy Jo,

    I think you missed Driscoll’s tattoo reference…he was being quite literal:

    “On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.” Revelation 19:16

  15. Word Warrior says:

    Amy Jo,

    I forget to add…

    I don’t think his quote had anything to do with making Jesus culturally relevant. It was an attempt to counteract a common false doctrine that paints Jesus as a mealy-mouthed man who doesn’t care about sin because “he loves us too much and doesn’t want us to feel bad”. Driscoll was pointing out that there is more to the Bible than the Beatitudes (favorite passage of this false teaching), and specifically describing the image of Christ when He comes to judge the world.

  16. Erin says:

    I loved these, thank you for sharing. The way Driscoll speaks can be offensive at times, but I think he is sound theologically, which is what matters most, as opposed to ear-tickling.

  17. Jennifer says:

    “I think he is sound theologically”

    I disagree, at least for the most part.

  18. Jennifer says:

    “I’ve quoted often from people with whom I don’t totally agree on every point”

    Me too 🙂 It’s good to find common ground wherever you can with other Christians; if I let all my disagreements cloud what great knowledge I could find, I’d miss out on Elisabeth Elliot’s great wisdom, Martha Peace’s great spiritual discipline, and John MacArthur’s insights. Not to mention John Piper’s killer poetry..

  19. Erin & Kelly- I do agree that I would rather have sound theology without tact rather than wishy-washy theology. But, I don’t find Driscoll to always be theologically sound.

    To me, he is far to reactive, and he often ends up throwing out the baby with the bathwater. For example, in a sermon I heard him preach once, he explained that his church was decorated “Raider Nation” style (ie. no decorations at all and any color to be found was black and silver) in order to make men feel more welcome at church because you didn’t want all that “namby-pamby feminine stuff” stealing their masculinity and feminizing the church. Do I think many modern churches suffer from feminization? Sure. But, does that mean I think we should throw out all femininity? Where do the women fit in then?

    This is how I find most of his theology to be. In order to drive his points home (many good points), he seems to resort to annihilating other things that are ALSO good. In addition, while I appreciate the fact that he has at least thought out his offensive tack, it still doesn’t sit right with me. To use foul language is against Scripture. To me, that’s just another face of “picking and choosing” what we want from the Bible, which is inappropriate, and frankly against everything Driscoll purports to defend. And frankly, irreverance for the things of God is plain contrary to Scripture from beginning to end.

    Like Heather said, I’d like to think that this is just an immaturity in Driscoll that God will iron out in years to come. After all, he is a young pastor. I just pray that his popularity here in Seattle will not hinder that process by making him prideful in it. What I worry about is that there is so much anger in his preaching so often. Righteous anger is one thing, but to mock and belittle others’ points of view is, to me, not a product of righteous indignation but comes from another source, one that I cannot believe to be godly.

    Driscoll certainly has a presence, though. I only pray God will use that more fully to His Glory.

  20. Lori says:

    Kelly – Thanks for the link. Believe it or not, I’ve heard about him and MHC for a long time, and never heard a sermon or anything. I enjoyed the link – “dearly-beloved-ers” that’s great! Watched a few more clips of him, and look forward to learning more. Interesting.

    Bethany, I think it’s interesting that you (and Heather) think he might be a bit immature. Can’t guess myself, but I know all pastors have a failing. Bethany, I’m glad you’re praying for him. We should all be praying for our nation’s spiritual leaders improvement and protection, esp those closest to us! 🙂

  21. Jennifer says:

    “We should all be praying for our nation’s spiritual leaders”

    He’s not a spiritual leader of our nation.

  22. Jennifer says:

    “In order to make men feel more welcome at church because you didn’t want all that “namby-pamby feminine stuff” stealing their masculinity and feminizing the church”

    God Almighty..

  23. I have to say I didn’t like every quote you posted here…a little too close to ‘grievous words’ that can ‘stir up anger’ – but I do totally agree we need strong speakers of truth in the leadership of our churches. Christians can be far too overwhelmed with pastors from the ‘Pansy Association’!

    That said, our tongue must be controlled by the Spirit – not our emotional responses to the current culture.

  24. Jennifer says:

    Oh, never mind my last comment Lori; I misunderstood what you said. Sorry

  25. Mrs. Lady Sofia says:

    I’ve heard some of Mr. Driscoll’s “sermons” via You Tube, and although he makes some good points, I would have to agree with Bethany that I think he sometimes takes a good point, “too far.” Why can’t he just say what he means without the “over-the-top” stories? It’s like the quotes that you mentioned in this post. Yes, I get the points he is making, but the way he describes the topics makes me feel a little uncomfortable.

    This is just my opinion, or course, I don’t know the man personally, and maybe this is just “his style” of “preaching.” I could say more, but I don’t want to go “over-the-top” either. I just want to share a brief opinion.

  26. Jennifer says:

    “You have been told that God is a loving, gracious, merciful, kind, compassionate, wonderful”

    He is! This doesn’t make Him a fairy. God loved us before Christ, and THAT is a miracle. He gave us Christ because He loved us.

  27. Ace says:


    Excellent points. We are given a CLEAR description of the man who is allowed by GOD to preach the gospel. Sorry, Driscoll is not one who fulfills this. Just because someone is charismatic or makes good points, we need to judge whether they are seeking and living a HOLY life before God, are QUALIFIED to be doing what they are doing and are they in obedience…that is how we judge the false from the true.

    It isn’t for us to like or dislike someone, we cannot pick and choose what we like from the Bible…it is there..take it or leave it.

    Also, Word Warrior, you cite the verse in Revelation ….it is not a tat….the Law forbids making cuttings on your body for the dead. This is how tats were done for thousands of years. Now they are done by making small cuts using a pen like instrument. This verse says written..and sorry, I just don’t buy that God says not to do it and Jesus has one.

    Many Blessings 🙂

  28. Lori says:

    Jennifer – Like it or not, MD is a spiritual leader IN our nation. He is a citizen of our nation, and he is a spiritual leader. Way to nit-pick!

  29. Jennifer says:

    If you don’t like nit-picking, Lori, I wouldn’t praise Driscoll. Thank God Driscoll’s not as upheld as finer complimentarians are. I already apologized for misunderstanding you, but my comment apparently got stuck.

  30. Chris Liverett says:

    Love to hear Driscoll. I understand where Bethany is coming from…I really do, but I will take my chances of his offense in my life to have it replaced with a passion for the real righteousness of Christ’s work. I am sick and tired of the corporate church’s religiosity when it comes to the watering down of everything from true manhood to the unfortunate mis-appropriation of attention to the works based corrupt false gospel. (been in church my whole life)
    Driscoll brings a fresh real look at where are energies should lie…at least for a 30 something family man!

  31. Heather says:

    Kelly (WW),
    I appreciate the link concerning the language. Yes, I have heard his line of logic before. Actually, I was a little surprised to hear it first from John Piper a few months back.

    I do agree with MD that self-righteous religious people tend to be the targets of the harsh language that is used in the Bible. I have a tendency to drift into that territory and definitely need a rap on the head when I get full of myself. Truly, I understand that concept.

    While I am not aware of the frequency or severity of MD’s “cussing” habit, that really wasn’t my main concern. The video defense of his language might hold up if he sticks to enlightening people to what the Bible is actually talking about when certain euphemisms are set forth. I, too, have experienced frustration about milk-toast preachers who only use fluff-and-flowers “Churchese” in order to seem more pious or not hurt feelings.

    I once listened to a local pastor talking about what “filthy rags” really were and it helped me a lot with understanding how seriously lacking I am when trying to do “good” from my own resources. I’m not at all against honest examination of scriptural text.

    But, the preacher I heard didn’t throw around brand names and crack jokes about “that time of the month”. He was very clear without being inappropriately crude.

    The type of thing that concerns me about MD is (first two paragraphs, sorry, I couldn’t find the original Youtube I saw).

    Compare with: Ephesians 5:3-4 For let fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness not be once named among you, as becomes saints,
    neither baseness, foolish talking, jesting, which are not becoming, but rather giving of thanks.

    “baseness” indicates obscenity–and I believe it is meant in both a both verbal and physical sense
    “jesting” is referencing coarse, or vulgar, joking (such as is referenced in the above link).

    I think the Bible is pretty clear on our standard of behavior (for all of us, not just “laypeople” or “pastors”). We are to vigilantly guard our minds, mouths and actions so we do not bring shame to the reputation of Christ’s bride.

    Honestly, I’m not interested in trying to dish up “dirt” on Mr. Driscoll. I just feel very uneasy about some of the ways he appears to present Scripture. It isn’t because I think I am “holier” than him or “more mature”. I have my share of faults and try to extend consideration that he is also human. But something about him just doesn’t sit well with me.

    I don’t necessarily disagree with the specific quotes that are posted. Jennifer made a good point about finding common ground with other Christians when possible. It is possible to acknowledge the truth of a statement without giving rubber-stamp approval to everything that person says/does.

  32. Kelly L says:

    Having never heard of him before and just watching a couple of clips, I maintain a nuetral position, having not enough knowledge. I have been taught by a pastor who said some stupid/unclear things that were later cleared up, but only the stupid comment is ever talked about. And while I am not a defender of cussing for any person ever (I didn’t see a clip of this, thankfully) I have to wonder if we are this critical of our own pastors/preachers/priests we have grown to love. Just as every house has a certain “odor” to it of which the owner is unaware, every church has some sin in it, some man-made part or doctrine, some acceptable behavior that makes God wretch. Yet God still uses these churches, members and all of us to impart His kingdom on earth all the while knowing we are sinful and being very aware of each of our sin. If MD has cussed, God will deal with him on that just as he deals with the pastors whose sins are less in your face but there nonetheless. Just as He deals with me daily to kill the flesh so He can shine all the more. I think bad doctrine should always be pointed out in love TO THE PERSON. That is how the Bible has instructed believers to deal with it, not on blogs. But if it is not a doctrinal issue but more of a style, the beauty is God has made us all comfortable in different “tribes” or churches. Go where He tells you to go. OK *steps down* off my soap box…sorry

  33. Ruth says:

    “I have to wonder if we are this critical of our own pastors/preachers/priests we have grown to love”

    Nope. But then, my own pastor was never like this. And with Driscoll, it looks like heart issues.

  34. delores says:

    from the very beginning i thought maybe the webpage had rolled over to something else. just unsettling to the soul.

  35. Jennifer says:

    “I am sick and tired of the corporate church’s religiosity when it comes to the watering down of everything from true manhood”

    Driscoll appears to banish womanhood altogether and to water down Christ’s love. This problem you mentioned (which is the flipside of the equally serious problem of abusive patriarchs) does not excuse abusing Christ’s words.

  36. Heather says:

    As I said, I’m not interested in trying to drag Mark Driscoll’s name through the mud. I truly wish I could get excited about the things he says with which I agree. Unfortunately, there is enough visible contradiction with this man that I believe the use of caution is warranted.

  37. Word Warrior says:

    Wow–had no idea Driscoll was capable of sparring such a debate!

    I’m not going to address the main thread here, simply because I respect the observations that have been made about Driscoll, and as I stated from the beginning (and other posts in the past), I don’t always agree with Driscoll’s choice of words or methods, but I think he is speaking a lot of truth that other pastors are not, and I respect him for that, and occasionally I like to post something he has said. I guess I recognize the “prophet” in him and give him a little more grace for his zeal, even though it can get out of hand.

    For some reason I feel the need to address the tattoo thing that Ace expounded on–we’re still not getting Driscoll’s point. When I said he was being literal, I meant literal in the sense that Jesus is described as having something actually written on his leg. Driscoll uses the word tattoo to describe it because it’s the only word we really have for such a thing–it was a quick, easy reference, and I don’t think he meant it to be taken as literally as some have taken it. Does that make sense? I think he knows Jesus didn’t really go to a tattoo parlor, but used the term loosely to give us a mental image opposite of the “weak” one he was opposing. Sometimes we get too worked up over the non-essentials.

    Chris–my brother! Glad to see you chime in–I always respect your wisdom!


    For a while now comments have randomly gotten caught in the spam folder. I have to manually approve them to let them out. Some times it takes me a while. I apologize, and I have no idea how to fix it!

  38. Word Warrior says:


    I’m curious as to what evidence you based your comment on:

    ***Driscoll appears to banish womanhood altogether and to water down Christ’s love.***

  39. Steph says:

    On the issue of Driscoll banishing womanhood altogether… I’ll just quote Bethany from upthread. She is more articulate than I!

    “For example, in a sermon I heard him preach once, he explained that his church was decorated “Raider Nation” style (ie. no decorations at all and any color to be found was black and silver) in order to make men feel more welcome at church because you didn’t want all that “namby-pamby feminine stuff” stealing their masculinity and feminizing the church.

    This is how I find most of his theology to be. In order to drive his points home (many good points), he seems to resort to annihilating other things that are ALSO good. In addition, while I appreciate the fact that he has at least thought out his offensive tack, it still doesn’t sit right with me. To use foul language is against Scripture. To me, that’s just another face of “picking and choosing” what we want from the Bible, which is inappropriate, and frankly against everything Driscoll purports to defend. And frankly, irreverance for the things of God is plain contrary to Scripture from beginning to end.”

  40. Steph says:

    Furthermore, I take issue with the way he seems to sneer at feminine traits and pursuits. “Namby-pamby feminine stuff?” Let’s do the dictionary thing:


    1. Insipid and sentimental.
    2. Lacking vigor or decisiveness; spineless.

    n., pl. -bies.

    One that is insipid, sentimental, or weak.

    Is that what it means to be feminine to Mark Driscoll – spineless, without vigor, insipid?

  41. Lori says:

    Jennifer- Yes, your apology certainly got stuck. When I posted my response to the “spiritual leaders” note our two comments were only separated by one. I thank you, and would not have commented had I known –


    Jennifer (8-13; 1:46 pm)”‘I’ve quoted often from people with whom I don’t totally agree on every point’

    Me too It’s good to find common ground wherever you can with other Christians; if I let all my disagreements cloud what great knowledge I could find…”

    THEN Jennifer (8-14; 4:19 pm)- “If you don’t like nit-picking, Lori, I wouldn’t praise Driscoll. ” I said ONE nice thing about him, and said I look forward to more. Are you the same Jennifer as in the first quote (I realize it’s a common enough name)? If so, that’s just inconsistant. Am I not allowed to find common ground? I’m thinking you’re letting your annoyance with the man get to you. It’s “clouding” your judgement. If you’re not the same Jennifer, then never mind.

  42. Jennifer says:

    “I apologize, and I have no idea how to fix it!”

    No need to apologize, Kelly! I didn’t blame you, but suspected there might be a bug or glitch. Thank you, though 🙂

    As to my comment about banishing womanhood, I got that uncomfortable feeling from his comment (repeated by someone else) about banishing any trace of femininity from church decorations. The one about Christ’s love, or rather Yahweh’s love, came from his words that God says He hates us, or hated us.

  43. Lori says:

    Oops – typo- both those quotes were supposed to read 8-13.

  44. Jennifer says:

    That’s all right Lori, I was a little harsh. Yes, I am the same Jennifer. Perhaps I was inconsistent, but I got irked because you said I nitpicked, not because I don’t like Driscoll. Still, you may well be right about my judgement; his words were really chafing me earlier.

  45. Amy Jo says:

    I’ll chime in one last time, since I was the one who made the original “tatoo” comment.

    First of all, WW, very cool Scripture from Revelation. Have never seen/heard that. I can definitely see where MD would have been referencing this.

    Second of all, again, I personally don’t have any issues with tatoos:-)

    And lastly, while MD may not have been making a “pro-tatoo” statment, I think that many of the ladies here recognize in him similar traits that I do: going to great lengths and “edginess” to be relevent. This is really not debatable. The sets of his church alone could prove this. He is an edgy preacher. And deliberately so. No apolgies for that (from him or me). I don’t appreciate his methods, and personally, I have had a great deal of interaction with one of his “proteges” (sp? so sorry) and the outcome of his ministry in our church has been disasterous. But, I cannot blame that on MD. Still, as another person so aptly put it, “something just doesn’t sit well with me.” While that is not an amazing and articulate manner of expressing myself, discernment can sometimes work that way. Either way, time will tell if MD is the genuine article or just another edgy preacher on the fringes who doesn’t “last.” I ceratinly am not ready to rank him up there with the likes of John Maxwell, John Piper, James Kennedy, Erwin Lutzer or the like. But, I may be wrong. I guess a true test will be the fruits of those who are being dicipled through his teachings at his church. And, ultimately, through the fruit of his own life. Again, time will tell.

  46. Cheri says:

    Wow! I had never heard of MD before, I just finished watching several of his videos on youtube. The “why I hate religion” video is my favorite. Sums up everything that has been in my head since the day I was born again over 10 years ago. (grew up in an atheist home) This is why my family hasn’t been to a church in over 5 years. (can’t find one that isn’t religous in our new town) Anyway, just wanted to thank you for sharing these quotes, and leading me to this pastor! Blessings! Cheri

  47. Word Warrior says:

    See, although there ARE things Driscoll says that bothers me, some of the examples given here, I think, are being “read into”, or maybe not perceived accurately.

    The banishing of feminine stuff in church…here’s the thing: one of Driscoll’s gripes, and rightly so, has been the abdication of men’s spiritual authority and presence in the church (and home), taken over by women, by default. In short, he knows the devastation we’re experiencing because so many men are not being the spiritual leaders of their homes and are at best “showing up” to church while the women are finding it necessary to take up the slack. Many churches have catered to this woman-dominated “industry”.

    His statements then are indeed a reaction to this serious problem. Driscoll exaggerates, yes, and so some statements must be taken with a grain of salt. If you listen to him at all, he has a solid view of men/women’s roles (as taught by Scripture) and honors women in the highest regard. His “banish feminine decor” statement has nothing to do with a poor reflection on women; it was slightly tongue-in-cheek as he recognizes the necessity of strengthening families by getting to the men and restoring them to their place of responsibility. (The feminist will hate this analysis, but that’s OK…)

    And Jennifer, regarding his statement about God hating us…his theology is spot on. After the fall, we were sinful. God hates sin. He cannot even look on it. Sinners are at enmity with God. Apart from an atoning, blood-sacrifice, by His very nature, we were hated. Which is what makes His love so enormous–because of Jesus, He is able to love us–sinners, filthy, undeserving–but He does anyway. I don’t think that’s watering down Christ’s words. We’re just not used to hearing the raw truth…think about it.

  48. Lori says:

    Jennifer – thank you.

    I could have made my point without saying “nit-pick.” I appreciate you “hearing” me despite the annoyance.

  49. Jennifer says:

    No problem, Lori 🙂

  50. Jennifer says:

    “We’re just not used to hearing the raw truth”

    The raw truth is that God loves us and always has. I know He despises sin and won’t accept us if we aren’t cleansed, but that doesn’t mean He hates or hated us; if He did, He would not have given us Christ. I don’t like his choice of words at all. I have also heard that MD’s shown hatred towards women; I’ll have to look into it.

  51. Steph says:

    As others have said, he just doesn’t sit right with me. When I listen to him, I feel… well, it’s kind of like a mixture between my skin crawling and guilt. Just a deep-seated gut feeling of wrongness.

  52. Heather says:

    I had a couple more thoughts…

    Kelly, I’m sorry for having contributed to a mess on your site. I know you were not intending to stir up controversy but Mark Driscoll is, in fact, a controversial personality. And, I believe it is an intentional presentation on his part. I’m not sure whether I agree with MD’s focus on being deliberately “in your face”.

    The gospel alone is offensive enough when honestly introduced. No edgy language or “masculine environment” are necessary. You know this and have experienced plenty of flak here for doing just that.

    Paul talked about being “all things to all men” so that he might win some. So, I do think it is appropriate to have a desire to be able to relate better to some who might otherwise be “put off” by typical western churchianity.

    I’m sure we agree that none of us is perfect and probably all have blind spots which others can easily see as wrong. And God is faithful to discipline those of us who are His children.

    Even after becoming a Christian, it is apparent that CS Lewis had a strong interest in paganism (in fact, many of it’s elements show up in his Narnia series). Yet, most of us would not think twice about quoting from his “Mere Christianity” or “Screwtape Letters”–or even the Narnia books if a particular statement rang true.

    Martin Luther was intensely anti-semitic. Yet he is viewed by many Protestants (Mark Driscoll included) as a hero of the Reformation.

    Even Jesus’ close friend Peter had hang-ups about the Gentiles until God got his attention.

    Of course we are all imperfect. Zeal counts, but only if it is directed properly. Saul zealously persecuted early Christians “for God”, but was not commended for it.

    Later, Paul said: “Be imitators of me, even as I also am of Christ.”(1 Corinthians 11:1) I’m certain Paul was not perfect, either, but he encouraged people to mimic his attitudes and behaviors which brought honor to the Lord.

    If a man proves by his fruit to be a false teacher, we are supposed to have nothing to do with him. It is important to ask for Godly discernment in order to know when to write off a professing Christian as such, though. I do not wish to have to account for why I self-righteously condemned a person whom He has pardoned.

    I am not at this time convinced of Mark Driscoll as a genuine false teacher (is that an oxymoron?),and have no business telling others to not listen to him. But if I see a very real potential for error or harm to undiscerning followers, I have a God-given duty to encourage others to prayerfully consider how closely they follow such a person.

    Paul’s instruction about following is applicable concerning any teacher of Scripture. Eat the meat, but be sure to spit out the bones so they don’t choke you later.

  53. Heather says:

    “The gospel alone is offensive enough when honestly introduced. No edgy language or “masculine environment” are necessary. You know this and have experienced plenty of flak here for doing just that.”

    I meant that you present it honestly and without contrived dramatics.

  54. Word Warrior says:

    Thank you Heather…solid thoughts.

  55. Jennifer says:

    Kelly, I hope none of my disagreeing comments seem disrespectful to you; I still need to work on my words sometimes. I really appreciate the fact that you respect our opinions and I enjoy reading your posts a lot. Thank you 🙂

  56. Word Warrior says:


    No, your comments, or no one else’s have bothered me or been disrespectful (well, except for that one that I deleted that called us all heretics ;-), but I’m used to that, which is probably why it’s pretty hard to hurt my feelings 😉

    Debate and critical thinking are good–it’s the reason I started this blog.

  57. Kelly L says:

    Kelly (WW),
    you made me laugh this am that someone would actually write that we are all heretics. Thanks for the good chuckle 😉

  58. Kelly L says:

    Also, forgot to say sorry for the double post…I am confused as to how that happened…maybe that I clicked submit twice because I thought it wasn’t working while my comp took 10 minutes? Delete one, if you’d like, to make me look less spaz-like.

  59. Jen says:

    Wow, haven’t read in awhile. what an interesting conversation! I do not always agree with his exact language or phraseology(?) BUT I do think that sometimes to get the pendulum back even remotely where it should be from far out in left field we have to sometimes start by swinging it far in the opposite direction. he intends to shock us and make us think maybe differently or more intensely about God’s Word than we would have had he toned it down. just a thought, not real original. i see a lot of similar thoughts have been shared already just thought i would chime in. Thanks Kelly for posting the quotes. blessings, Jen in al

  60. Word Warrior says:


    Your pendulum analogy is EXACTLY what I’ve been thinking his philosophy is like.

    Also, I think a lot of people don’t understand that his heart of ministry is to men–and often to men coming out of hard circumstances, deeply rooted in lifestyles of sin…and maybe he knows that it takes a lot to “get through”??? Again, not to excuse when he goes too far, but understanding a little more about where he is coming from helps me to see his tactic from a different angle.

  61. Kim M. says:

    I need a little time to process him before I give an opinion. I am still twitching from the shock! LOL!!!! 😛 I think I will watch some of them with Michael.

  62. Kim M. says:

    …”them” meaning YouTube videos

  63. Steph says:

    “Also, I think a lot of people don’t understand that his heart of ministry is to men–and often to men coming out of hard circumstances, deeply rooted in lifestyles of sin…and maybe he knows that it takes a lot to “get through”??? Again, not to excuse when he goes too far, but understanding a little more about where he is coming from helps me to see his tactic from a different angle.”

    Isn’t that tactic very similar though to something you’ve complained about in the past, though? I mean the issue of gearing the message towards the lost instead of to believers.

  64. Word Warrior says:


    Actually, I was referring to his ministry being directed to men who were Christians, but had come out of some very depraved lifestyles. Honestly, I don’t *know* if the majority of his congregation are Christians, but I’m assuming they are. He speaks to them like they are, I’m just guessing his “in your face” approach is because of where they’ve come from…just my opinion.

  65. Word Warrior says:

    My earlier comment wasn’t very clear about that–

  66. Stephanie says:

    I am certainly not a theologian, but that quote in which MD said “God hates us” is not what my Bible (KJV) tells me. It says in John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son…” God doesn’t love us because of Jesus, God sent Jesus to die for us because He loved us. I will say, though, that to have fellowship with God, to ‘get to God’ we do have to go through His son Jesus. Jesus said in John 14:6 “I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

  67. Word Warrior says:


    I’m afraid your Bible does say that, as much as it says “For God so loved”…that’s the beauty of it. He is literally incomprehensible. What are you going to do with all the references that make MD statement right?

    We can’t stop our ears and chant “la-la-la” to the parts of Scripture we don’t like just because of our finite understanding of God is. And remember, you can’t know His love if you don’t understand His sin-hating holiness.

  68. Lori says:

    The Bible is pretty clear on the subject. God loves. AND God hates. It’s both. You don’t have to understand it. “Jacob have I loved and Esau have I hated” (Rom 9:13). Love and hatred are both attributes of God. God loved so loved the world = God loved the world in such a manner.

    “he who does not believe has been judged already” (John 3:18) – This implies an advance rejection by God, like with Esau. God loves and God hates. God at one point regretted creation (Gen 3:6), even knowing that He would redeem it – regret creation, love the world (in such a certain manner).

  69. Jennifer says:

    “Jacob have I loved and Esau have I hated” (Rom 9:13).”

    I heard somewhere that “loved” in this case meant “chose”; God chose Jacob instead of Esau for some things. That’s a dangerous passage to use concerning hate, because Esau did nothing to deserve it; telling people God hates them before they’re born is even more dangerous than telling them He hates them because they sin. And again, the response “you’re not supposed to get it” doesn’t apply here; God puts the most important things in a way we can at least begin to understand, fundamentally, and He’s not a God of contrary nature. I don’t think He regrets, either; that word implies a wrong done or a mistake, which God’s incapable of. He sorrows, but He doesn’t regret.

  70. Jennifer says:

    One more word on MD: his words about not worshiping a guy he can beat up are blatantly foolish. Jesus did get beat up, for us; He got beaten to an inch of His life, and THAT was the greatest sign of His strength, not strutting around with tattoos, intimidation and foul words. He used force and anger when it was needed; all other times, there was honesty and love. MD sounds like he wants a bully, not a God. Christ was a bully to evil and rightly so, but MD made it sound like the fact Jesus wanted to make someone bleed alone was a sign of Holiness. I want to make some people bleed, Mark; quite frequently in fact. Does this make me a woman after Christ’s own heart? Does it make me a woman you’ll respect, instead of fearing I’ll steal someone’s manhood with my soft, bland feminine ways?

    Sorry, I’m getting irked here. I’ll climb off the fence now.

  71. Quinn says:

    I just wanted to point out that the word for hate in Malachi 1:3 where God says he hates Esau, is used 136 times as hate in the OT. (6 times as enemy) It is the same word used in Ecclesiastes is contrasted love in “a time to love, a time to hate.”

    In the Greek the word used for hate in Romans 9 is only ever translated at hate or hateful, never chose. For example that same Greek word is used in Luke 6:27 where we are told to do good to those that “hate” us. Obviously it wouldn’t have the same meaning if we only had to do good to those who chose us.

  72. Jennifer says:

    Then perhaps it was hate as an action and not an emotion.

  73. Jennifer says:

    Oh and btw Quinn: I said I heard that LOVE, not hate, was synonymous with “chose”.

  74. Quinn says:

    Sorry Jennifer! That’s what I get for trying to do a word study when my children aren’t sleeping! 😀

    I’ll try again- Love as chose in Rom 9:13 is the same way though: agapao (agape)- love: 135 times and beloved:7 times.

  75. Jennifer says:

    No problem Quinn 🙂

  76. Alexandra says:

    Hi all! After reading this debate, I felt like I needed to chime in. This message isn’t directed to anyone in particular. Mark Driscoll is a sinner just like…everyone else. His sermons are his way of spreading the gospel to a certain crowd. I am a 21 year old female and I enjoy his way of preaching. I totally agree with Driscoll customizing his sermons to reach our level. I’ve been raised in a strict traditional, southern baptist church for my entire life, and I do not relate to those teachings. The old school sermons are boring to me and I don’t understand them. You may enjoy those teachings, and that’s cool. I’m not going to sit here and tell you that your way is wrong because it makes me uncomfortable. God isn’t a comfortable God. Those who disagree with Driscoll are most likely not of my generation, and if they are and are still offended, I suggest you become more open minded. God created us for the sole purpose to serve Him and to spread His gospel. To criticize Driscoll, or any church for that matter, is basically telling God that He is doing wrong by speaking through Driscoll and reaching hundreds of people. So what about the language he uses, it’s saving people right? If you don’t like it, don’t listen to it. If you don’t agree with it, find something else, or better yet, go and gather your own crowd and preach to them. It annoys me when sinners criticize other are no better than them. You came from the same dirt. You’re going to go to Heaven or Hell just like everyone else. When your day comes and you are standing before God, what are you going to say to Him when He asks you why you bashed His bride? The church is not the building. The church is not the location, it is not the music, it is the people. Mark Driscoll is one man who has been led by God to reach certain people. When you bring your selfishness in the church, you will ruin the church. When you whine because you didn’t like a certain song or you don’t like the atmosphere, you’re totally missing the point. You may not prefer Driscoll, but he got you discussing God, right? He got you to dig into the bible to look up the verses so you could continue to fuel this debate. It seems like using scripture to bash someone in order to make yourself look better would be wrong, right? hmm. how about we stop bashing others for how God uses them, and start loving them like God loves us? thank you and good night.

  77. Jennifer says:

    Miss Alexandra,

    I am of your generation and I despise MD’s way of “preaching”, as you call it. What will he say about his hatred shown towards women and Christians on Judgement Day? Talk about bashing God’s Bride. Furthermore, you seem to be indirectly criticizing people here for the exact kind of behavior Driscoll shows: what of his selfishness and his whine about churches he believes are too feminine? Why doesn’t he just go somewhere else instead of complaining because he doesn’t like the style, it hurts his manhood and boohoo? Maybe he should be more “open-minded” since he doesn’t like it? Surely you’re not comparing his own juvenile behavior to God simply because they’re both “uncomfortable”?

    “It annoys me when sinners criticize other are no better than them”

    Then you should be annoyed to the point of screaming by Driscoll by now. And calling out a cruel spirit and crude words in a sermon is not the same as regular criticism.

    “To criticize Driscoll, or any church for that matter, is basically telling God that He is doing wrong by speaking through Driscoll and reaching hundreds of people.”

    Wow, that’s about the weakest defense of spiritual abuse that I’ve ever seen. No church should be criticized because they’re always serving God somehow?

    “It seems like using scripture to bash someone in order to make yourself look better would be wrong, right?”

    Yes dear, hence our indignation. Your entire post is full of loose logic and contradiction, Alexandra. I recommend you take some time to do a lot of spiritual maturing.

  78. Mama says:

    I was actually present at Mars Hill for the Song of Solomon series, and it was AMAZING. To refer to it as irreverent is just ignorant. Mark Driscoll is filled with the Holy Spirit, and is passionate about Christ and His teachings. I’ve found that if I’ve ever been insulted by him, it’s because the Lord was addressing sin in my own life, and I was being self-righteous. Maybe some of you should consider that point and draw the connection to how you feel and what God’s Word says – and then give an honest account of why you’re so offended. You’ve got a great quote up there: “Our God is a little offensive! Most of the people who REALLY liked Him got killed!” Sometimes God’s Word is offensive because we’re being sinful. Period. And everyone who thinks Mark Driscoll is self-righteous obviously doesn’t go to the church. He’s preached entire sermons on humility, calling himself out in example after example, and apologized for not always exercising humility. But if you’re only youtubing bits and pieces, you wouldn’t know that, would you?

  79. MFree says:

    “By Jennifer, August 13, 2009 @ 4:00 pm

    “God loved us before Christ, and THAT is a miracle. He gave us Christ because He loved us.”

    The Godhead(Trinity) has always been. There isn’t a “before Christ”. Before Christ became to be Human, yes, but not “before Christ”. The Godhead was operative in the Old Testament.

    Genesis 1:26-27, And God said, LET US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness…So God created man in his own image, in the image of God [not angels, the “us” can only refer to God.]

    Pastor Mark is very sound, listen to more than a excerpt from a sermon, any sermon can and will sound crazy when cut up and taken out of context just as scripture can.

  80. Jennifer says:

    I’ve heard enough from him, MFree, and not just here. I know Christ has always been here, but I thought I was clearly speaking of before His time on EARTH. He’s always been, but we have not always been redeemed by Him, and He loved us even before that.

  81. freida says:

    I had heard of Mark Driscoll and was curious, especially after seeing that he had a message on birth control.

    This was my first introduction to Mark Driscoll and it left a very bad impression. If he had just wanted to state his case that Christian liberty allows for birth control, so be it. I would’ve certainly gained nothing from his interpretation of what the Bible says about having children. But his attack on godly women like Nancy Campbell, Nancy Leigh and others made me feel that he had a personal vendetta against these people. And homeschoolers! He made fun of the very group of people that I am ministered to and whom I seek to minister to. I wrote a post after listening to his message:

    His disregard of civility and reverence make him not very usable as God’s minister. I certainly wouldn’t recommend someone who John MacArthur believes should be disciplined. Having heard of his treatment of people he disagrees with make me believe that if I did recommend him, I would be doing young mothers who have so much to learn from godly older ladies like Nancy Campbell a great disservice. The people we associate our names with matter. If he had read any of your posts on birth control, your name may have been on his hit list.

    The way he preached in the message on birth control gave me the impression of a young, passionate, and arrogant Christian who believes he can say anything he wants to in order to combat what he believes is legalism. He doesn’t understand what legalism is if he attributes legalism with those who are against birth control. (Which he does.)

    I am saddened to read your endorsement of him. He is so plainly against what we teach our children in regards to the calling God has for married people and godly and edifying speech.

    I hope you would listen to his message and tell me that I read him all wrong. That when he said it’s funny when he mocks homeschoolers, he’s just being facetious. That his take on birth control is perfectly in line with God’s Word. (Well, if you come to that conclusion, I must read YOU wrong.)

    If Benny Hinn has some quotes that seem provocative and their shock and awe value make one listen, I still wouldn’t think it honoring to God to give him any kind of attention for fear that his other unbiblical words may detract from God’s glory. I hesitated in linking Mark Driscoll’s birth control message because I didn’t want anyone to listen to him and learn from him. I believe they would be steered in a wrong direction than what would give God glory. But I want you to listen to it because I don’t think you know how damaging his words can be.

    In regards to his Song of Solomon interpretation, it would seem that Mark Driscoll is the one who needs to examine legalism in his own heart.

    Finally, I cannot recommend a preacher who is not a faithful pastor. How can someone pastor congregations via video sermons? He cannot. Those watching him are not being shepherded. That is not the biblical New Testament model of a Christian church.

  82. Word Warrior says:


    A few thoughts about your comments…

    First, I agree with you. Especially about the birth control post. I heard it early on too, and was sorely disappointed in the way he handled Mrs. Campbell (who I deeply admire) and his trademark way of slighting something he doesn’t agree with.

    In his defense, though, I think he has grown a lot, and I have, in fact, recently heard him say some really positive things about large families and homeschooling. (Even hinting at the “perversion” of trying to divorce sex from procreation.) He has also made several recent “public apologies” admitting his tremendous struggle with pride and humility, and admitting that he doesn’t always handle his words well.

    That said, I also don’t mind saying that I do recommend speakers/authors/pastors from time to time that I openly don’t agree with 100%. In fact, there are very few I totally agree with. I think Driscoll is spot on most of the time, theologically speaking, even if he poorly handles a subject from time to time. I think speakers like him who are that solid and willing to speak up are rare.

    Randomly, you mentioned his lack of shepherding and preaching via satellite. I don’t know how often or what that looks like all the time, but I do know each Mars Hill church has its own pastors, and I’m not beyond comparing his video feed to Paul’s letters who reached a number of churches. Can’t help but think Paul may have enjoyed a video feed or two himself 😉

    I respect your opinion. All in all, I think he addresses some really important things–too much to throw him out for his weaknesses. He is just a man.

  83. Jennifer says:

    What to do you know: I agree with Driscoll about Campbell’s teachings and am very gratified to know that he had the humility to apologize. Thank you, Kelly; you’ve proven too once again that you have discernment and complexity in beliefs yourself.

  84. Ben Jensen says:

    Bethany – If you have been to Mars Hill you would have noticed the comments about the “raider nation” doesn’t reflect anything on the church there

  85. Alison says:

    I think Mark Driscoll is fantastic. Thanks for posting such great quotes. He is one of the most theologically sound pastors that I’ve heard preach, and I’m so thankful that we have some Christian leaders like him who are willing to stand up for truth. I am amazed and shocked at some of the comments about him hating women. Have these people heard or read any of his teachings on women? He constantly preaches such a servant’s heart for husbands towards their wives and goes on and on about protecting women and daughters and treasuring wives. He appears to be a very loving family man and has five children. It is refreshing to see a pastor with more than two kids. I don’t know if I heard a different birth control sermon, but I heard him say he thought using the pill was sinful and not right and that he encouraged the blessing of children and large families and only seemed to think natural family planning should be used in dire situations under lots of prayer. Not a quiverfull mentality, but still so much better than 90% of pastors I have heard. He is willing to stand up against Hollywood movies like Avatar, which many churches don’t have a problem with. And thank the Lord he is bringing some masculinity back to our cultural view of Jesus. He was not a peaceful hippie – sorry to burst some of your bubbles. I don’t agree with every thing he has said or every method used, but I like his preaching style, and it gives ms hope that there are some Christians out there willing to stand up for truth and not sit quietly aside. He has spoken out about other movies and books too, which is refreshing to hear in a culture where many so called Christians watch or read whatever is popular. For those on here who keep arguing the God is love bit, you need to read your entire Bible. God wiped people out, and Jesus came to bring a sword, not peace. I’m thankful that we have pastors like MD willing to speak out against the Emergent Church movement and other popular but harmful areas in our Christian culture.

  86. Jennifer says:

    I don’t have a problem with Avatar either, Alison.

  87. My Favorite Mark Driscoll Quotes | … Oh dude I want the idea net page. It will be the newbie I ran across it yet I Enjoyed it.. Indeed will be back, you got tons of articles in at this website 😀 ok returning to do the job finally 🙂

  88. Peter says:

    May I add that you should be careful in over analysing what Mark is trying to say from select quotes, as you may miss the spirit of it. Mark uses hyperbole to make his point alot and over analysing is quotes may lead you to miss the point. You also need to recognize the context of his church. I think he has a somewhat unique demographic.

    Mark is not for everyone, but I actually think he’s got something that the church is missing. He recognises significant issues the culture is facing like gender and sex and actually speaks about them.

  89. Caitlin says:

    I have listened to a lot of Mark’s sermons. He has been able to explain some of the most controversial issues brilliantly. He is an individual with his own personality and that’s why some people don’t like him. Their personality doesn’t mesh with his, and our personalities come out with our profession, no matter what that profession is. God gave us all our own personalities and if you don’t like his, well that’s why God has hundreds of other men and women of God to listen to.
    I have found Mark to teach from the bible and explain things very well, and he loves Jesus and he loves talking about Jesus, and that’s beautiful. He also calls men to be men of God, and to lead their families with love and righteousness. He calls people to repent and stay away from all sin and he isn’t afraid to call it all out. People redicule him and act as if A. they have never done what he is calling them out on, and B. when they watch their stupid soap opherahs or reality TV shows, they see it anyway, but yet they still want to redicule him for saying it. HELLO! In this day and age, there is NO shock value anymore! People who are dissing him know this, they just give it the okay on their TV, but not okay else where. We hear it and see it every day, so Mark is calling it out and saying SIN like it is!!! “don’t lust, don’t have your pants down in front of your computer screen, don’t flirt with your secretary, don’t cheat on your spouse” etc etc. He says it like it’s happening because guess what people, it’s happening, this world is NOT good!! And the world’s biggest sin right now is SEX! And you know what, major props to Mark for standing up and calling this world out.
    His sermon on the book of Revelations is wonderful. First teacher I’ve heard to teach it right. A book that says “you will be blessed if you read it” and it’s the “revelation of jesus christ”, but yet so many churches don’t teach it. Or when they do, they go way off topic on these crazy speeches about nuclear bombs and skin peeling acids and the governement. It’s about Jesus, and worshiping Jesus, and what you need to do to stay out of hell, and importantly that there is a hell!
    Mark Driscoll teaches people to be real followers of Christ and how to. He teaches us to truly love Jesus. Mark really cares about leading people in the right direction and it shows. SOME people who diss him are missing the point and really just don’t understand christianity and what Jesus is really calling us to do, and what it is really all about. And a lot of people don’t understand the seriousness in getting it right! Mark’s passion for that comes out in his sermons and sometimes yes it is harsh. But again, people, don’t act like you have a shock value…we all know you don’t. You live in this world, there is no shock value. The married CEO is sleeping with the married secretary and we close our eyes and kiss their butt to get a better raise, OR our TV program we love shows teenagers and adults being permiscuous and having jealousy wars and cat fights and stealing each others boyfriends and husbands and we turn it on every week to see the latest drama, but good golly Mark Driscoll says a curse word and all hell breaks loose. Get over it! You’re just as corrupt and in the end you need a savior too. The same savior Mark teaches about and presses on the world that WE ARE CORRUPT AND WE NEED JESUS…..

  90. […] interpreted instead of the other way around. Mark Driscoll has talked about his preference for the “prize fighter Jesus” of Revelation who looks more like the Old Testament warrior God than the woos who got jacked up on […]

  91. Robin says:

    This is an old post but none the less….check out
    I use to listen to Driscoll when I was a babe in Christ (right around the time you posted this). His messages are pleasing to the flesh. He does not stand for holiness or true separation. The man is a bad example of a godly man. He rapes the book of Solomon. He has no business being a pastor. Want to hear strong preaching that’s done in a biblical manner check out J.C. Ryle, Charles Spurgeon, etc. Not this woof in sheeps clothingm

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