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My aim in working through these episodes is to help folks think through the church they attend, the leadership culture of their church, and, potentially, identify things that might not be apparent. I will not provide a “Monday morning play-by-play” critique. I hope you will gain personal insight through this review, as well as applications to your teachers and the church you attend.
The saying is trustworthy: If anyone aspires to the office of overseer, he desires a noble task. Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church? He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil (1 Timothy 3:1-7).
Those who promoted Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill, who were not part of MH, applauded what was happening based on the messages they heard, plus other external indicators, e.g., church growth, sermon downloads, and leadership charisma.
Though we are not responsible for the Mars Hill debacle, we must not turn off our discernment. Go back to the 1 Timothy 3:1-7 template. We charitably observe the behavior of our leaders to make sure their lives line up with 1 Timothy 3:1-7. If we see how their lives are not in line with what it means to be a leader, we are responsible for calling attention to it in biblically appropriate ways. I listened to Mark Driscoll because I could not avoid him, but I stopped after hearing enough of his thoughts, mannerisms, and style.
Rick launched the Life Over Coffee global training network in 2008 to bring hope and help for you and others by creating resources that spark conversations for transformation. His primary responsibilities are resource creation and leadership development, which he does through speaking, writing, podcasting, and educating.
In 1990 he earned a BA in Theology and, in 1991, a BS in Education. In 1993, he received his ordination into Christian ministry, and in 2000 he graduated with an MA in Counseling from The Master’s University. In 2006 he was recognized as a Fellow of the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors (ACBC).