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  #1  
Old 18th October 2010, 01:33 AM
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Mars Hill Church, Mark Driscoll a cult?

I've been going to Mars Hill Church in Seattle for the 3rd or 4th time and it doesn't feel right. The songs are weird and the lyrics sound cult-ish, especially when they said something like, "Heaven comes down with a roar."


Is this church a cult? I don't feel comfortable, but they seem to have an emphasis on Jesus Christ.

The aura is just weird... I've been to huge gatherings and what not, but this is different.
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  #2  
Old 18th October 2010, 01:40 AM
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For what its worth, I felt exactly the same way....
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  #3  
Old 18th October 2010, 07:42 AM
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I know John MacArthur is pretty solid; here's some comments by him on Mark Driscoll:

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“My love of consistency with my own doctrinal views is not great enough to allow me knowingly to alter a single text of Scripture. I have great respect for orthodoxy, but my reverence for inspiration is far greater. I would sooner a hundred times over appear to be inconsistent with myself than be inconsistent with the word of God.” – Charles Spurgeon


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Old 18th October 2010, 08:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Windowsseven View Post
I've been going to Mars Hill Church in Seattle for the 3rd or 4th time and it doesn't feel right. The songs are weird and the lyrics sound cult-ish, especially when they said something like, "Heaven comes down with a roar."


Is this church a cult? I don't feel comfortable, but they seem to have an emphasis on Jesus Christ.

The aura is just weird... I've been to huge gatherings and what not, but this is different.
From what you describe, it does sound cult-ish. If you're not comfortable, go somewhere else.
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  #5  
Old 19th October 2010, 01:09 PM
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I don't blame you for feeling uncomfortable at his church. I have felt uncomfortable listening to some of his sermons where he basically yells at you.

I have mixed feelings on him. He is reaching a group of people (outcasts, rebels, "punks") who indeed need Christ. But he has said from the pulpit that God hates us all which contradicts the message of Christ's love for us (but hate for our sin).

We should not compromise. We can't blend in with the world. Mark Driscoll considers himself a rebel and purposely separates himself and his church from other churches. We are supposed to be a body of believers who work together with the goal of bringing Christ to sinners. I don't know if he believes he and his church can go it alone or what?

Anyways, I hope you find a good, Christ exalting church and feel welcome. Perhaps a smaller church (I'm from a rural area, so I love the small church where everyone is so loving and know you by name!). God will lead you to the right church. God bless!
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  #6  
Old 19th October 2010, 02:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Future Preacher View Post
I don't blame you for feeling uncomfortable at his church. I have felt uncomfortable listening to some of his sermons where he basically yells at you.

I have mixed feelings on him. He is reaching a group of people (outcasts, rebels, "punks") who indeed need Christ. But he has said from the pulpit that God hates us all which contradicts the message of Christ's love for us (but hate for our sin).

We should not compromise. We can't blend in with the world. Mark Driscoll considers himself a rebel and purposely separates himself and his church from other churches. We are supposed to be a body of believers who work together with the goal of bringing Christ to sinners. I don't know if he believes he and his church can go it alone or what?

Anyways, I hope you find a good, Christ exalting church and feel welcome. Perhaps a smaller church (I'm from a rural area, so I love the small church where everyone is so loving and know you by name!). God will lead you to the right church. God bless!
That's a good poiont. I've been in both big and small churches, and small churches can feel more like "home".
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  #7  
Old 19th October 2010, 04:12 PM
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Personally, I am not a fan of the mega church fad, and from what I understand Mars Hill -- Seattle (not to be confused with Mars Hill -- Grand Rapids, which is also a well-known mega church) is one such church. That said, I don't know enough about the church to comment on whether it is cultish. I would ask to provide examples of what troubles you.

However, I have found that churches just don't work well when they get too big (say 1000+ weekly attenders). We have several mega churches in our area, and they are all well known for being more of an entertainment venue than a spiritual community.
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  #8  
Old 19th October 2010, 04:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Windowsseven View Post


Is this church a cult?
No.

That church's pastor is well known, so there might be a personality cult there, as there are at many churches, but it isn't a cult in the sense of teaching unorthodox things.

There have been plenty of churches I haven't felt comfortable at, but none of them were cults in the sense that their theology was unorthodox. I just didn't enjoy them for whatever reason and moved on.

It doesn't sound like a church that I would want to go to. I don't appreciate getting yelled at from the pulpit. It sounds like an unhealthy dynamic there, with the authoritarianism of the pastor coupled with him having lots of fans who enable him.

I'd move on if I were you, there are plenty of churches, so why stay in one where you are yelled at and made to feel uncomfortable?

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Old 19th October 2010, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by dies-l View Post
Personally, I am not a fan of the mega church fad, and from what I understand Mars Hill -- Seattle (not to be confused with Mars Hill -- Grand Rapids, which is also a well-known mega church) is one such church. That said, I don't know enough about the church to comment on whether it is cultish. I would ask to provide examples of what troubles you.

However, I have found that churches just don't work well when they get too big (say 1000+ weekly attenders). We have several mega churches in our area, and they are all well known for being more of an entertainment venue than a spiritual community.
I partially agree with you on that...there are some of the megachurches that are good...the pastors are teaching sound doctrine, and the needs of the congregation are handled properly...but there are others, like the 3000 member church I went to, that have poor management. The pastor is really good in delivering the Word...but, he has more of an evangelist type calling on his life than he does pastoral...and because of this there are many management issues, they're forever making changes to the different ministries...I was there a little over a year and they had three different youth ministers during that time...I was involved in the Celebrate Recovery ministry as the praise and worship leader, and men's counselor...it was going along fine, the guy in charge of the ministry was doing a good job...but then one day the pastor decided it was time for a change...no explanation.

The other thing I didn't like was not being able to talk with the pastor...they'd always send you to some other staff member if you had a problem, or needed spiritual guidance...I was introduced to the pastor numerous times while I was there...he came into the store I worked at, at the time, and I said, "Hello Pastor," it was like he and I had just met.

Pastors should know there flock...even if it's just by name.

The church we go to now, we visited before we started attending the megachurch...only went there once, and a year and a half later we went back...the Pastor and his wife met us after service and he said, "I was wondering about you guys, how old are the twins now?" My wife was pregnant with our twins when we visited the first time!

I definitely prefer the more personal feel of smaller churches.
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Old 19th October 2010, 05:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Big Drew View Post
I partially agree with you on that...there are some of the megachurches that are good...the pastors are teaching sound doctrine, and the needs of the congregation are handled properly...but there are others, like the 3000 member church I went to, that have poor management. The pastor is really good in delivering the Word...but, he has more of an evangelist type calling on his life than he does pastoral...and because of this there are many management issues, they're forever making changes to the different ministries...I was there a little over a year and they had three different youth ministers during that time...I was involved in the Celebrate Recovery ministry as the praise and worship leader, and men's counselor...it was going along fine, the guy in charge of the ministry was doing a good job...but then one day the pastor decided it was time for a change...no explanation.

The other thing I didn't like was not being able to talk with the pastor...they'd always send you to some other staff member if you had a problem, or needed spiritual guidance...I was introduced to the pastor numerous times while I was there...he came into the store I worked at, at the time, and I said, "Hello Pastor," it was like he and I had just met.

Pastors should know there flock...even if it's just by name.

The church we go to now, we visited before we started attending the megachurch...only went there once, and a year and a half later we went back...the Pastor and his wife met us after service and he said, "I was wondering about you guys, how old are the twins now?" My wife was pregnant with our twins when we visited the first time!

I definitely prefer the more personal feel of smaller churches.
I suppose that it is possible that a megachurch can be well run, but I have trouble seeing how a pastor can really properly shepherd 1500+ people. That said, one thing that mega churches do sometimes do well is equipping smaller churches. The church that I attend routinely uses materials from churches like Willow Creek (Chicago) and Mosaic (Los Angeles). While I would never attend either of these churches primarily because of their unwieldy size, I have found that their size allows them to create teaching materials that are very helpful.
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