Mark Driscoll is probably one of the most well-known preacher/pastors in the world right now. He is also one of the most polarising, whether it is because of his views on homosexuality, mixed martial arts, Avatar, or any number of other issues.
Recently Justin Brierley, the host of Unbelievable, a debate/interview show between Christians and non-Christians interviewed Mark Driscoll, for an article for Christianity Magazine, partly to tie in with Driscoll’s release of his new book Real Marriage (which is not without its own controversy).
Justin is known for his fair, and even-handed control of the debates between Christians and non-Christians. He doesn’t give patsy questions, but he doesn’t play attack dog either, and he generally lets both sides have their say and facilitates their interaction, which is probably one of the main strengths of the program – it leads to genuine dialogue between believers and non-believers on a wide range of topics.
Parts of the interview were broadcast on the New Year’s Eve Unbelievable show, including one part where Driscoll said:
“Let’s just say this: right now, name for me the one young, good Bible teacher that is known across Great Britain. You don’t have one – that’s the problem. There are a bunch of cowards who aren’t telling the truth.”
This quote was picked up on by Christian Today magazine, who published a short article based on the excerpts from the Unbelievable show, which then prompted responses from people including Krish Kandiah, a director of the Evangelical Alliance.
I’m guessing that Mark Driscoll’s recent blog post, “A Blog Post for the Brits” is largely prompted by the initial reaction to this, and in anticipation that the article Justin Brierley will write for Christianity Magazine will be equally or more critical of him and his ministry.
What he says in this blog post is worse than anything in the interview. And you can have a listen to a portion of it (start at 34 minutes) and judge for yourself. He has launched a pre-emptive strike against Justin Brierley simply on the basis that he thinks that the article in Christianity Magazine will be uncomplimentary towards him.
He says this interview out of all he has done with both Christians and non-Christians associated with the release of real Marriage, this one “... was, in my opinion, the most disrespectful, adversarial, and subjective. As a result, we’ve since changed how we receive, process, and moderate media interviews. ”
Ironically, according to a colleague of Justin Brierley’s, Mark Driscoll had little to worry about from the article:
What Driscoll has said amounts to character assassination. Honestly, if Mark Driscoll is so thin-skinned that the mere possibility of criticism causes him to treat people like that then he should not be pastoring or writing books, let alone controversial ones.
Update: The full interview audio is now available