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Resources on Mars Hill Church

Scotland - Dunino Candle
I make no secret of the fact that I have a number of beefs with the Seattle-based megachurch and its celebrity pastor. This collection of links and resources is largely for my own reference, but I hope others will find it a useful resource as well. Please feel free to comment if you have any others you think I should add, or if you just want to vent. Most of my problems with MHC are addressed in the links below, but there are a few which I've never seen directly addressed anywhere.

When Driscoll and his church mandate proscribed and very specific gender roles and behaviours for men and women, and then identify Jesus as a thoroughly masculine "ultimate fighter" figure, they turn Jesus into something completely inaccessible to women (or to anyone who does not identify as a "macho" male). Christians are called to be Christ-like, but what Driscoll seems to imply is that only a certain percentage of the population even has the necessary parts.

I also have a problem with MHC's sex trafficking victim outreach. While they may be doing some good work here, their literature refers exclusively to girls/women as victims of sexual slavery. The idea that boys/men can be victims of this industry seems to be completely off their radar (as are other human trafficking industries). Why is this? Perhaps because the dominant narrative of MHC is "women are victims and men are strong"? Or maybe "gay sex is icky and we don't want to think about it"?

I would love to see more discussion on these two topics, if anyone feels inspired. And now, on to the list.


Resources made available by MHC and Mark Driscoll:
Mars Hill Church website
Mark Driscoll's recent sermons
Mark Driscoll's sermons on Marriage and Women and Marriage and Men (3/09)
Mark Driscoll preaches against homosexuality (5/10)
Mark Driscoll's website (est. 2011)
Mark Driscoll's public FaceBook wall
Mark Driscoll's non-apology apology following "Effemigate" (7/11)
Mark Driscoll's sermon on sexual assault - Not completely terrible, but still some problematic paternalistic aspects. (2/12)
Porn Again Christian by Mark Driscoll - Free e-book on men, pornography, masturbation, and sex. (2008)

Neutral Resources:
MHC Wikipedia entry
Mark Driscoll Wikipedia entry

Survivor Testimony & Spiritual Abuse Resources:
Mars Hill Refuge - MHC survivor blog (wife of Two Clear Eyes). (est. 2012)
Two Clear Eyes - MHC survivor blog (husband of Mars Hill Refuge). He offers a detailed, articulate account of his experiences at MHC. (est. 2012)
Freedom For Captives - MHC survivor blog. Lots of in-depth discussion and resources on warning signs of spiritual abuse. (est. 2009)
Praying Heart - MHC survivor blog. (est. 2008)
Matthew Paul Turner/Jesus Needs New PR: A former MHC member ("Andrew") goes public about his experience with church discipline [1, 2] (1/12)
The Wartburg Watch: On MHC's response to exposure of church discipline procedure, plus more survivor testimony (1/12) A Shunning in Seattle - some more clarification on the case of "Andrew". (2/12)
Former MHC pastor Bent Meyer comments on some issues he sees still ongoing within MHC, and his own firing in 2007 (1/12)
The Stranger: Another former MHC member ("Lance") goes public with some jaw-dropping testimony. (2/12)
Mars Hill Refuge: More survivor testimony ("Kaelee") (2/12)
The Wartburg Watch: How to Minimize Damage When Resigning From a Mark Driscoll-like Church (2/12)
Wenatchee the Hatchet: Technology and the Illusion of Control - evaluating the veracity of survivor testimony and MHC's failed attempt at keeping disciplinary matters private. (2/12)
Joyful Exiles - Former MHC elders go public with emails and documents they received from the church at the time of their firing in 2007. (launched 3/12)
Matthew Paul Turner: Exorcism at Mars Hill - A woman tells the story of her unwilling exorcism from "sexual demons" at the hands of Mark Driscoll. (6/12)
Pure Provender - General resource on spiritual abuse.

Blogs regularly featuring posts on MHC and Mark Driscoll:
Are Women Human? (tags: Mark Driscoll, Mars Hill Church)
The Wartburg Watch
Matthew Paul Turner - Jesus Needs New PR (tag: Mark Driscoll)
Wenatchee the Hatchet - former member of MHC who left on reasonably good terms.
Driscoll Watch - a blog specifically devoted to respectfully refuting Driscoll's claims about Catholicism.
Driscontinuity - fact-checking Mark Driscoll.
Is Mark Driscoll a Bully? - A record of ex-MHC member testimony and Driscoll quotes.

Articles & Blog Posts:
Seattle P-I: Mars Hill pastor responds to uproar over blog posts on women (12/06)
Denny Burk: Mark Driscoll on Women in Ministry (7/07)
The Stranger: Fired and Brimstone: Mars Hill Megachurch Has No Room for Two Dissenting Pastors (11/07)
Obscene Beauty: Does Mark Driscoll believe in a God of Love or Hate? (11/07)
Praying Heart: Pastor Mark Driscoll... "Jockeying for and Abusing Power?" - on new MHC bylaws and consolidation of power. (1/08)
Praying Heart: Does Mark Driscoll Continue to Lie to Mars Hill Members? - concerning the reasons behind the firing of two MHC pastors. (3/08)
Christianity Today: A Jesus for Real Men: What the new masculinity movement gets right and wrong. (4/08)
New York Times: Who Would Jesus Smack Down? (1/09)
Cathy Mickels: Mark Driscoll: is he qualified to lead? (1/09)
Experimental Theology: Thoughts on Mark Driscoll ... while I'm knitting - thoughtful discussion on gender and Christianity, albeit with with some problematic language (w/Driscoll video clip). (2/09)
Freedom 4 Captives: Cult-Like Spiritual Abuse Issues & By Laws In a Nutshell - positively hair-raising! (4/09)
Are Women Human?: Punishing gender-variant masculinity (9/10)
Christian Post: Driscoll, MacDonald Defend Multisite Church Strategy - Driscoll claims his congregation are less "addicted" to him than those at a regular church. (9/10)
Are Women Human?: Mark Driscoll is not God (3/11)
Shawn Wamsley: Mars Hill Church, Mark Driscoll, and Gender Roles - Driscoll's problematic equation of masculinity with agency. (4/11)
The Broken Telegraph: Mars Hill, Mark Driscoll, and Church as a Spectacle (5/11)
Matt Morin: The Confessions of a Cage Fighter: Masculinity, Misogyny, and the Fear of Losing Control (6/11)
Are Women Human?: Dianna Anderson: Dear Mr. Driscoll (7/11)
Joy In This Journey: Don't Take Pot-Shots at Worship Leaders, er, I Mean, ANYONE - Effemigate. (7/11)
Rachel Held Evans: Mark Driscoll is a bully. Stand up to him. - Effemigate. (7/11)
Love Radically: Mark Driscoll's Missed Opportunity - Effemigate. (7/11)
Here I Blog: Mark Driscoll On Prophetic Dreams and Seeing the Future - Driscoll's gift of prophecy allows him to "see" his parishioners engaged in sexual sin (w/extended quotes, audio and video clips). (8/11)
Question @Yahoo Answers: Why do Pastors Mark Driscoll and Perry Noble have such similar sermons? (8/11)
Jesus Needs New PR: Mark Driscoll 'sees' things (9/11)
Alisa Harris: To the Child Star of PastorMark.TV - what does it mean that Driscoll's 14-year-old daughter will be blogging on his website? (9/11)
Seattle P-I: Seattle pastor Mark Driscoll says yoga is demonic - but not MMA? Both are rooted in Eastern mysticism, but apparently only the one "for women" is demonic. (11/11)
Christian Pop Culture (Brad Williams): Dear Driscoll, MMA is not a Measure of Manhood — Jesus is (11/11)
Wenatchee the Hatchet: Publisher's Weekly on Mark and Grace Driscoll's Real Marriage, and a phrase to be considered - what are the implications of Driscoll's confession that he made "a god" of sex? (12/11)
The American Jesus: In Defense of Christian Bloggers - critique of The Elephant Room round table discussion. (1/12)
Krish Kandiah: Driscoll and Britain (1/12)
Kinnon: The UK Real Interview – Was it of the Undisciplined or the Undiscipled? (1/12)
The Friendly Atheist: Did Anyone Else Know Pastor Mark Driscoll Was Sexist? (1/12)
The Friendly Atheist: The Christian Indoctrination Will Continue Forever (1/12)
The Wartburg Watch: Driscoll, Acts 29 Deny Haiti Relief Because of a Female Pastor (1/12)
Church Leaders: Driscoll on Sex, Critics, and When to Cross the Line in the Pulpit - Driscoll talks about Real Marriage and his critics. In question #4, he dismisses any criticism directed at him. (1/12)
Driscontinuity: Ted Bundy is Not a Prop - refuting Driscoll's "facts" about Ted Bundy. (1/12)
Strange Figures: In the name of love, should we just keep quiet? - On letting churches get away with spiritual abuse. (1/12)
Covenant of Love: Never Mind Andrew’s Sin, What About Mars Hill’s Sin? analysis of MHC's interpretation of scripture surrounding church discipline. (1/12)
Big Circumstance: Mark Driscoll And The Mars Hill Churches: When Discipline Becomes Control Becomes...? (1/12)
Searching for Chet Baker: The Dangers of Mark Driscoll & The Mars Hill Church (1/12)
Notes From the Well: concerns about mark driscoll, mars hill church and the acts 29 network - criticism from a former Driscoll supporter. (1/12)
Cushman Chronicles: Thoughts on Mars Hill and Andrew... - a former Driscoll fan responds scripturally to the MHC discipline controversy. (1/12)
Wenatchee the Hatchet: Mark Driscoll & Church Discipline - was the recently publicised instance of MHC discipline the result of nepotism? (1/12)
Christian Pop Culture: From Fanboy to Frustrated: A Plea To Mark Driscoll (2/12)
The Stranger (Brendan Kiley): Mars Hill Wants to Reconcile (3/12)
The Friendly Atheist (Amanda): Mars Hill Church Responds to Criticism (3/12)

Reviews: reviews of MHC by members and visitors
Ship of Fools Mystery Worshipper on Ballard campus MHC service (1/08)
Are Women Human? on MHC's God's Work, Our Witness documentary [1, 2] (12/11)
The Friendly Atheist: Grace and Mark Driscoll Write a How-Not-To Book on Marriage - review of the first chapter of Real Marriage (12/11)
Dianna E. Anderson on the first chapter of Real Marriage, especially noting the framing of Grace Driscoll's sexual assault only in terms of how it affected Mark. [1, 2] (12/11)
Rachel Held Evans: Driscoll, "Real Marriage", and Why Being a Pastor Doesn’t Automatically Make You a Sex Therapist (1/12)
David Moore @The Burner on Real Marriage [1, 2, 3, 4] (1/12)
Word Vixen: Mark Driscoll's Real Marriage Book Review (1/12)
Sojourners: He Said, She Said: Driscoll's "Real Marriage" is Really Not (1/12)
Practical Theology for Women: Our Review of Real Marriage by Mark and Grace Driscoll (2/12)

"I get a feeling, you got around Paul when he was a young guy, you got around John the Baptist, or Elijah -- I mean, these dudes seem pretty rough to me, you know? They don't look like church boys, you know, wearing sweater-vests and walking around singing love songs to Jesus. I mean, guys like David are well known for their ability to slaughter other men. I've gotta think these guys were dudes. Heterosexual, win-a-fight, punch-you-in-the-nose dudes.

"And the problem with church today, it's just a bunch of nice, soft, tender, chickified church-boys. Sixty percent of Christians are chicks, and the forty percent that are dudes are still sort of chicks. I mean, it's, it's just
sad. You know, when you walk in it's sea-foam green and fuchsia lemon-yellow and -- the whole architecture and the whole aesthetic is real feminine, and the preacher's kinda feminine, and the music's kinda emotional and feminine, and we're looking around, going, 'how come we're not innovative?' cause all the innovative dudes are home watching football, or they're out making money, or climbing a mountain, or shooting a gun, or working on their truck. They look at the church, like, that's a nice thing for women and children.

"So the question is, y'know, if you wanna be innovative, how do you get
young men? The whole war, all this nonsense on how to grow the church and how to do this, and -- one issue: young men. That's it. That's the whole thing. They're gonna get married, make money, make babies, build companies, buy real estate. They're gonna make the culture of the future. If you get the young men, you win the war. You get everything. You get the families, the women, the children, the money, the business. You get everything. If you don't get the young men, you get nothing. You get nothing.

"Most churches are built to cater to forty-something-year-old women. And their children. And the guys are nowhere to be found. We built this church going after young, single, non-Christian, perverted, educated, technological men. The church is over -- as far as I can tell -- is over half male, single, in their twenties. That demographic does not go to church. The least likely people to go to church are twenty-two to twenty-five-year-old men. The least likely.

"But that is the most important slice, because they're, they're, like I said, they're making all their major life-decisions. And churches that don't have those guys, they
cannot be innovative, because they don't have innovators. They're just not there."
- Mark Driscoll, 2006

"a Richard Simmons, hippie, queer Christ," that "is no one to live for [and] is no one to die for."
- Mark Driscoll, "Death By Love" sermon, Resurgence theology conference (2006)

"If you would please, turn with me to the Song of Solomon. One of the great books of the Bible. Some have allegorized this book, and in so doing, they have destroyed it. They have destroyed it. They will say that it is an allegory between Jesus and his bride the church. Which if true, is weird. Because Jesus is having sex with me and puts his hand up my shirt. And that feels weird. I love Jesus, but not in that way."
- Excerpt from Mark Driscoll's sexually explicit "Song of Solomon" sermon series (2007)

"Some adults are just always questioning... these are people with critical spirits. These are people that if you answer their question, they've got 25 more questions, and they'll have questions forever. And it's not that they have questions, it's that they're sinning through questioning."
- Mark Driscoll, MHC sermon (2008)

"Without blushing, Paul is simply stating that when it comes to leading in the church, women are unfit because they are more gullible and easier to deceive than men. While many irate women have disagreed with his assessment through the years, it does appear from this that such women who fail to trust his instruction and follow his teaching are much like their mother Eve and are well-intended but ill-informed. . . Before you get all emotional like a woman in hearing this, please consider the content of the women’s magazines at your local grocery store that encourages liberated women in our day to watch porno with their boyfriends, master oral sex for men who have no intention of marrying them, pay for their own dates in the name of equality, spend an average of three-fourths of their childbearing years having sex but trying not to get pregnant, and abort 1/3 of all babies. . . and ask yourself if it doesn’t look like the Serpent is still trolling the garden and that the daughters of Eve aren’t gullible in pronouncing progress, liberation, and equality."
- Mark Driscoll, On Church Leadership, p. 43 (2008)

"And I would seriously — I'll bring under church discipline any guy that plays defense [says "no" to sex with his wife]. If the guy's like, "No, that's too much." It's like, you need to repent. Stop playing defense. No defense, right? All offense: that's what we're talking about."
- Excerpt from Driscoll's "Peasant Princess" sermon series (2008)

Question: My wife wants sex more than I do, what should I do?
Answer: Don't tell your buddies or they will mock you incessantly for the rest of your life after staring at you blankly without blinking for about an hour in total silence. Do have sex with your wife as often as she likes and thank God.

- Mark Driscoll, Porn Again Christian, Ch. 5 (2008)

"So, what story do you have about the most effeminate anatomically male worship leader you've ever personally witnessed?"
- Mark Driscoll FaceBook status update (later deleted) that sparked "Effemigate" (2011) Is there any one critic that you really want to respond to? Have you seen any criticism come in that made you say, "That's a good point, and I need to deal with this"?
Driscoll: Well, I wouldn’t respond to individuals, but I would engage issues. My thing is always attack the issue not the person because, quite frankly, this book has gotten a lot of media attention, and much of it is non-Christian. I think there are bigger issues here as non-Christians are watching how Christian leaders treat one another. That’s important.

- Interview with (2012)

Wittenburg Door: Mark Driscoll Kicks His Own Ass (7/08)
Are Women Human?: Mark Driscoll Apologism Bingo (10/11)
Twitter accounts for @fakedriscoll and @fakemrsdriscoll

Mark Driscoll quote featured on Tea Party Jesus (7/11)

Driscoll - (verb)
1. To overcompensate in hopes of hiding one's true sexual orientation.
2. To bully into submission.


( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
29th Jun, 2011 09:52 (UTC)
1) I though Mars Hill was led by Rob Bell, who is ace.

2) is this the same Jesus who surrounded himself with women and spent so much of his time championing them and their rights?

29th Jun, 2011 09:57 (UTC)
1) I don't know anything about Rob Bell, but MHC seems to be solely centred around the personality of Mark Driscoll.

2) Maybe they're talking about two different guys? I think Monty Python did a film about that....

Edit: OK, looked up Rob Bell. Apparently he founded a church by the same name in Michigan.

Edited at 2011-06-29 09:58 (UTC)
29th Jun, 2011 21:44 (UTC)
There are two Mars Hills, one in Seattle, one in Michigan, both led by charismatic men who are basically the complete opposite of each other. :p Rob Bell kind of creeps me out in a Svengali-ish way, but he's certainly not the giant homophobic misogynist douche Mark Driscoll is.
29th Jun, 2011 12:39 (UTC)
I give it no more than a year before there is a sex scandal involving Mark Driscoll and either a) one or more prostitutes of either gender; b) one or more minors of either gender; c) hard drugs; d) wife beating; e) all of the above. Self-righteous misogynistic homophobic bastards like this always have something to hide.
29th Jun, 2011 19:33 (UTC)
I'd like to think so (except that I'd hate to see anyone else harmed in such a situation), but I feel like we think that's a pattern because those are the ones we end up hearing about, and we hear about them because of the massive hypocrisy of what they do, rather than because such offenses are unique to their personal brand of creepiness. There's probably lots of creeps who stay under the radar their whole lives.
29th Jun, 2011 22:37 (UTC)
I don't know. He's almost certainly abusive but some emotionally abusive people are very good about keeping their behavior to things that they're extremely unlikely to get caught for. Just having psychological control over people can be enough for them. Also religious complexes can just as easily work in the direction of being obsessively upright as being a secret hypocrite. He could pride himself on being a completely faithful husband who is incredibly protective of his wife and children. I tend to suspect that's more Driscoll's hang up than the traditional secret vices and/or crimes.

I would be shocked if he were 100% straight, though.
1st Jul, 2011 16:36 (UTC)
From the looks of things, he's been active and preaching since 2004, it's not a flash-in-the-pan phenomenon.
Any revelation is probably going to be slow-burning.
2nd Jul, 2011 10:19 (UTC)
Like Ted Haggard. It was years before his taking-meth-off-a-rent-boy's-stomach scandal hit the media. It's just a matter of time anyway.
28th Aug, 2011 01:27 (UTC)
I kind of love your icon. :3
28th Aug, 2011 01:24 (UTC)
or f) swindling his congregation.
1st Jul, 2011 09:36 (UTC)
Would you have any interest in getting commentary from a female priest? I have a friend in Finland who is a priest in the state Lutheran church, and also has degrees in Western theology and church history. She could probably provide you with some good biblical arguments against this crap.
2nd Jul, 2011 01:14 (UTC)
I'm always interested in more input, though I've done a lot of reading myself, and am up on most of the good arguments against complementarianism. I also feel like (as with liberal/democrat v. conservative/republican) what we're dealing with are diametrically opposed philosophies, and it's almost impossible to convince anyone who holds one that anything the other side believes is valid. Still, if she's interested in discussing this, I'd be happy to hear from her.
2nd Jul, 2011 10:20 (UTC)
Yeah, she may not necessarily have anything new to offer, but you might find it interesting anyway!
Gary Anderson
20th Apr, 2012 08:42 (UTC)
Thanks for linking to my blog.
Hey There!

My name is Gary and you linked to my blog "Searching For Chet Baker" and my article "The Dangers of Mark Driscoll & The Mars Hill Church". I appreciate it and I'm glad you found my blog and found it useful, if only for this one post.

I'm fairly new to learning about this guy although once I got to knowing about him I realized that I had heard of him before because people in my church (Spokane Washington) have mentioned him and some of them absolutely adore him and think he's a "great man".


Anyway, I noticed I was getting some hits from here and wandered over here to see what was going on. Thank you, once again, for the link!

20th Apr, 2012 08:44 (UTC)
Re: Thanks for linking to my blog.
No problem. I hope you find some of the other links here helpful and informative. I personally find the survivor blogs to be the most compelling.
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )