Why No Woman Should Support Mark Driscoll’s New Church

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In very recent news, controversial pastor, Mark Driscoll, is starting a new church.

Former Mars Hill Church senior pastor Mark Driscoll has filed incorporation papers in Phoenix for a new entity called The Trinity Church in Arizona, 14 months after he resigned his Seattle pulpit and just under a year after Mars Hill ceased to exist. The new entity will be a “Bible-based Christian church” with Driscoll and two other directors, each giving the address of Mark Driscoll Ministries in Phoenix. Driscoll and his family moved to the “Valley of the Sun” last summer (Source).

According to a Relevant Magazine article released in March of 2014,

The frequently controversial leader of Seattle’s Mars Hill church has been accused of everything from plagiarism to gaming his way onto the New York Times Bestseller list. There have been troubling stories from inside the church, and a few tweets that might be described, at best, as “ill-advised” have made the rounds (Source).

Relevant also included Driscoll’s open letter of apology and includes, “It’s worth noting that Driscoll issued a similar apology back in 2007,” although this link has now been deleted. I want to be fair to my brother in Christ, so I read his full apology on the Relevant article from 2014.

Christians who are seemingly fans of Driscoll are encouraging the evangelical church to “forgive” him, as he has repented. One such blogger writes,

You may have profound differences of opinion with Mark Driscoll. You may be disappointed in many of the stories which came out of Mars Hill; his ministry may not be your cup of tea. But where is your grace…There must come a point when a repentant man is restored. If we do not believe in the power of forgiveness, second chances, restoration and grace, what do we believe in (Source)?

I agree, if a Christian repents, we as the Church should show him or her grace, let their mistakes go and help to restore their life and calling. So, I googled this exact question: “Did Mark Driscoll repent for calling women penis homes?”

The first article that came up was written by Libby Anne (written in September of 2014). She writes,

“I have rarely seen an evangelical man assert male superiority and prominence this directly,” and then she directly quotes Mark Driscoll:

The first thing to know about your penis is, that despite the way it may seem, it is not your penis. Ultimately, God created you and it is his penis. You are simply borrowing it for a while. While His penis is on loan you must admit that it is sort of just hanging out there very lonely as if it needed a home, sort of like a man wandering the streets looking for a house to live in. Knowing that His penis would need a home, God created a woman to be your wife and when you marry her and look down you will notice that your wife is shaped differently than you and makes a very nice home (Source).

So, I went back to the Relevant Magazine article (which includes Mark’s full apology letter) to see if I may have missed him repenting for calling women “penis homes.” He did not repent for this. In fact, he did not apologize for any misogynist remarks he has made through the years in this open letter.

So, I went back to google. Maybe he apologized for being sexist towards women somewhere else, I thought. No, he did not. The only other apology I could find is one directed towards Joel Olsteen.

Complementarian and egalitarian Christian women alike – Do you believe that God created you to be a “penis home?” Do you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for you so that your body could be used as “a very nice home” for a man’s sexual organ?

Do you believe that Abba God, our loving daddy, would have you (and your daughters) sit under a pastor who believes you to be “shaped” simply to fit a man’s sexual needs? I hope you know that you were created for more and that you have a divine purpose outside of providing a home for your husband’s penis.

Driscoll may have repented for being an angry, cheating, prideful leader; but I cannot find any apology for his misogynistic remarks about and to women.

Driscoll, in response to a woman on the discussion board: “I speak harshly because I speak to men. A woman might not understand that. I also do not answer to women. So your questions will be ignored. I would however, recommend to you a few verses to memorize: I Timothy 2:11-15; I Corinthians 14:33-35.To learn them, ask your father or husband. If you have neither, ask your pastor. If she is a  female, find another church. If you are the pastor, quit your job and repent (Source).” 

The truth is that Driscoll answers to no woman, not even his wife, Grace. The two were married as teenagers and one can tell by watching just a few of their online videos that Grace has an extremely laid back (maybe even oppressed) personality. Don’t take my word for it, go to YouTube or even Driscoll’s own blog and see for yourself.

Driscoll totally overpowers Grace and it is evident that he dominates their lives. I don’t know any complementarian or egalitarian women who would sign up for this type of marriage. Why would any woman attend a church of a man who does not and will not ever hear a woman out and ignores their questions?

In Driscoll’s open apology he very generally refers to all his past comments as part of his “angry prophet days,” but let’s examine what an angry prophet actually is.

Angry is defined as having a strong feeling of or showing annoyance, displeasure, or hostility. Prophet is defined as a person regarded as an inspired teacher or proclaimer of the will of God. Therefore, Driscoll is not taking back anything he wrote or said about women. He still believes his words to be “truth” and the Will of God. He is simply regretful for not “prophesying” in a kinder, cordial, more politically correct fashion.

Driscoll does not respect women in the least and I am honestly not sure if he even likes women. Jesus treated women with the utmost care, honor, love and respect and in this regard, Driscoll is nothing like Jesus.

Additional Sources and Context: 

In 2000 Mark Driscoll posted the nasty sexist comments (listed above) under a troll name. You can view the screenshot of his original statements (under the fake name William Wallace II) in this blog post: (Source).

He apologized and the world let it go for 14 years. (Source).

He then got busted for lying and cheating on his book sales/promotion (See sources above) and rumors of him being a prideful and abusive leader surfaced from his church. In 2014 Driscoll’s ex-women’s pastor stated,

“Mark held to a view [based on his reading of] Genesis that the woman’s primary problem is that she desires to control men. When applied to his teaching about wives submitting to their husbands or being sexually available to their husbands, this made men (and women) automatically suspicious of any woman who critiques Mark’s teaching. This suspicion made it hard for women at Mars Hill to speak up, whereas in a lot of churches that hold similar views, women feel perfectly free to voice their opinions.” (Source).

I noted Mark’s apology letter in 2014 above (in Relevant magazine). Sadly, Mark does not mention his treatment of women through the years. He has not changed his theology concerning women and it is his theology towards women that makes him a threat to God’s daughters.

It appears that Driscoll is quick to apologize when he gets busted doing something insanely wrong, but does not show genuine heart change (especially towards women). Yes, let’s show him grace and love, but our grace cannot be cheap and our love must be tough. In my opinion, any woman who sits under Driscoll’s pastoral leadership is in emotional, spiritual and psychological danger. We forgive a “shooter,” but we certainly don’t hand them another gun.

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  • I’ve come to believe that there are people who really do want to be told what to do in order that they will not have to take responsibility for themselves, to the point where they will seek out leaders such as Driscoll who will disempower them. As such, they then feel justified at some future date to say that they were made to do whatever it was that is now in question. There have been extreme cases of this in churches, Jim Jones being one of them, but there are many other situations where pastors, with the full consent of their congregations, become little demigods, masters of their own universes.

    Unfortunately, God isn’t cool with people worshiping their pastor and eventually the house of cards (cads) falls in and great is the damage (again) to the Church. I’m grieved over this news, but also incredulous that there is already a bunch of people out there who can’t wait to check in their brains at the door in order to be absolved of responsibility for their own lives.

    This is what Matthew 24:24 is talking about when Jesus says ‘even the elect shall be deceived’. God help us… really!

  • Men are too enamored with their penises. It’s a developmental phase that they are supposed to grow out of. Who would want to attend a male-dominated church? Not me. We get a more complete picture of who God is when both genders submit to the Lordship of Christ.

  • Mark Driscoll makes me cringe. Just reading the Gospel and the book of Acts will show you how warped and anti-Gospel his viewpoint on women is. Where do you even start with a guy like this?

  • Jory, you could publish another post titled “Why No Man Should Support Mark Driscoll’s New Church” – and simply repeat the same exact content!

  • WHOA Jory, you went there! And thank God you did. What is hard for me to fathom is the absence of complementarian leaders in this discussion raising these concerns. I do believe in grace and restoration, but it doesn’t appear that Driscoll is repentant of his misogyny. It also appears that many complementarians see nothing wrong with Driscoll’s approach or attitude. My mama always told me, “Leah, EVERYTHING is spiritual.” Mama was right. We are dealing with a spirit here. And It can’t help but to rear its ugly head. It’s nasty to the core. Of course those under the influence of this spirit of misogyny and oppression will quickly embrace wicked theology and excitedly accept one of its most beloved leaders.

  • well done, Jory. And I agree with Matt Blaisdell. Men should be reminded of everything you said. Men need to stand next to other men and tell them what godly men do and believe. And it isn’t the garbage Driscol preaches.

  • I’d been on the fence regarding his public apology. That he didn’t recant his misogynistic remarks tells me he didn’t recant some of the most antiChristian things he said.

  • Yeah, I’m not a fan of demonstrating grace for sinners who can’t specifically name the sin that caused harm to so many people.

  • I’m not going to say that Mark Driscoll hasn’t made mistakes before, but I feel like this post is not a way of lifting up a brother in Christ who has been extremely humbled over the past year. Yes, mistakes have been made, but now he’s growing in new ways. Can we focus on where he is headed with his wife and family and rejoice in the fact that God IS working in him? I know it will take time for some folks rebuild a trust in him, but bringing up things from the past (like some of the above quotes that seem to be taken out of context) may not be the best approach.

    • Would you apply this logic to a child molester? Restoration to fellowship does not mean a return to (frankly only worldly ) leadership . He can be forgiven and attend a church , but lSpiritfilled leadership isn’t something he has ever demonstrated a capacity for, give the job to someone who has demonstrated spiritual integrity ( not stealing tithe money to pay there way onto bestseller lists or threatening members who don’t give him 10% of their earnings (even welfare earnings), or lying about supporting churches in India while spending it on local projects, or plagerizing books. It can’t be that difficult to find someone else to lead a church who isn’t so tempted and weak to sins of greed and lust of power – all signs of pure incompetence for a Godly position.

    • Unless he has changed his bullying personality, his abuse of those under him while giving only himself the benefit of the doubt, unless he has opened all the books (both kinds) to show that plagiarism and financial cheating and inurement are in the past, then no, he has no realistic chance at becoming a kind, wise , Christ-like shepherd or leader of any kind. Run for your life!

    • It’s sadly common when people don’t understand the difference between forgiveness and purposefully setting someone up for the same fall again (and setting up his future victims as well).

      If he has genuinely repented of his contempt for women (there is no outward evidence of this), then God has forgiven him. That has nothing to do with foolishly restoring him the position in which he fell into this sin over and over again before. Those who truly care about him will not put him in this position again, but will be there to love him by holding him accountable for the damage he has done in the past.

      One of the greatest outward signs of repentance is a desire to make things right and to avoid that sin in the future. Such persons welcome accountability and do not seek publicity and prominence, as they know their own weaknesses too well. Forgive him for his sins against women if he ever asks for it; but do not put him again in a position of power over women. It is a deliberate temptation to have him back in that position, and those who support him without holding him fully accountable will also be accountable one day.

      • It is way too soon for Driscoll to become a leader again. Simply insane that others are cool with this. The problem with these type of men is that they have very little accountability and their strong personalities will lead them to surround themselves with the sort of accountability that will do what they want because they are so strong willed and not worth arguing with.

        • I don’t think Driscoll was ever qualified to be a leader or preacher to start with. The man is an egotist, opportunist, sexist, and a bully, with a hair trigger temper. I hope he does not get a following at his new church in Arizona, if he actually opens one there.

  • There has to be a time where a person is forgiven. I have not always spelled out to God every sin I have done, but God gives me grace and forgives me

    • You can’t manage to seperate forgiveness and restoration with job security? Try again, he can be forgiven and restored to fellowship, but like a youth leader who gets caught molesting children, this by no means grants him authority over any female (as a pastor) ever again. Repentance and restoration are about fellowship, not leadership!

    • God has forgiven our sins even before we committed them.

      When we wrong others there is only one way to heal things and that is repentance that involves acknowledging what you did wrong and committing to not doing it again. Then that has to be backed with action that over time proves you were sorry and that is evidenced by you not doing it again.

      Or, as I tell my children, Sorry means you stop.

      There is nothing in Scripture that encourages God’s children to repeatedly subject themselves to someone who continues to damage them. Nothing at all.

  • OK, let’s seperate two ideas, first repentance and second restoration. So everyone has to repent time and again for many things. Got it ( although if you are constantly repenting it is likely an area that needs careful attention). Secondly, restoration. Now, what God promises to us is repentance grants us a restored relationship with God. Nowhere does it EVER say that it is gauranteed restoration of : family, job, church, wealth, etc. In fact, should a person be caught molesting children, I’d say true repentance would include admission that said person should never be in charge of children ( even if that was what they once were). They could be forgiven for their sin, restored to fellowship, but never considered safe alone with children. In fact, true repentance would acknowledge that. So, why is everyone conflating restoration from his sins of plagerizing, using tithe money for personal book promotion, lying about raising $$$ for Africa and India, etc., etc. With fit for ministry? Mark May or may not have truly repented. But the restoration offered by Christ is to be restored to fellowship, not restored
    to a church leader. Those two points are very different. Forgive Mark if you think he is genuine, but as for leading a ministry, he has shown poor leadership for decades, he isn’t gifted by the spirit of God for that (although I’d say he is talented at holding an audience, like a politician or Ted Talk presenter), and there is NO reason for him to attempt again what he continually failed miserably at over and over again. Remember, folks, a God fearing leader isn’t the same as a worldly superstar leader (David vs. Saul, there is a point to that story, God can, and does greive his decision for those he once chose).

  • I don’t agree with not answering to women as, if the words of the apostle Paul apply to us, then there is no male or female within Christ so any person can be our spiritual mentor regardless of sex. I do think that his comments about a woman being made to fit a man’s body is correct and is only regarded as sexually discriminitive because of the influence of extreme feminism and homosexuality. If a woman’s body was not created to fit a man’s, then we would have all been made men and god would just be making new people every few moments to populate the earth.

    • Women are not made by God to be “penis homes.” Some women do not even get married. Some women are called to celibacy (As the Apostle Paul was). This is a sick, sexist remark that Driscoll made and is unacceptable and offensive to women.

      • The wording is offensive but the concept is just something that we would just accept unless it is pointed out with direct words. Once we try to separate our instincts from our understanding of our instincts then we will confuse ourselves because we will find imbalances in our understanding.

        The whole quote is almost unbelievably offensive which leads me to think that the speaker purposely made it so. I think it would be shallow to dismiss his train of thought based on being offended.

        Is there a full sermon from this person about the subject?

        • It would be shallow to dismiss someone who is being purposely offensive? Are you serious? So we need to give abusers MORE attention and space to be abusive? I guess it’s easy to look the other way when people are being dehumanized- as long as it’s not happening to you.

          • He’s an intelligent man and to have such a controversial comment would be strange unless he had a deeper meaning behind it.

          • Sociopaths are usually highly intelligent. Doesn’t mean they aren’t dangerous or abusive. But as long as his abuse isn’t directed at you, it’s all good, am I right?

          • I don’t know if your assumption of character is aimed at me or at all men who may question your criticism of the statements we are discussing. As well as assuming my arguments are hypocritical, you are also assuming that I consider his statements to be abusive.

          • Why on earth would my assumption of character be aimed at all men? Or, is that just your not-so-subtle way of calling a me a man hater? How sadly cliche. And any assumption of character that I make is based entirely on your comments, which strike me as breathtakingly lacking in any kind of empathy. that doesn’t make you hypocritical- only indifferent to the suffering of others–or maybe just women. Whether you consider his statements abusive is frankly immaterial. Any mental health professional would confirm that a spiritual leader who refers to women in such crass and derogatory terms coupled with his notorious belligerence in person is being abusive whether you “believe” it to be so or not. You could equally “believe” that drinking bleach is safe and healthy- doesn’t make it true.

          • The reason I thought your assumption was about all men is because you said it twice and you said it without knowing how objective I actually was so your comment didn’t seem to be aimed at me. You also asked if I thought abuse of women is good and assumed that I thought Mark Driscoll’s comments were abusive. You also assumed that I would only justify abuse in my arguments if it wasn’t happening to me so I thought you were accusing me of being hypocritical.

          • Intelligence has nothing to do with abuse of power making strange comments. Some of the most intelligent people are master manipulators and even some are insane.

          • That would need to be judged according to the majority of his beliefs; a single strange comment does not negate the power of the rest of his normal beliefs.

          • Well, apparently Driscoll believed that pastors were allowed to run over their own parishioners — he boasted that one day there would be “mountain of bodies” behind the “Mars Hill bus”. According to the testimony of his former members and elders, that boast seems to have come true.

            In other words, his “normal beliefs” were those of a bully and a fool. Nothing remotely Christlike about them.

          • @ Aaron William John Quinn.
            Maybe I missed it, but are you familiar with Mark Driscoll at all?

            The man has a pattern of over ten or more years (and this is documented on blogs and news sites all over the internet) of-
            bullying church members, saying sexist things, saying smutty and vulgar things in sermons in front of audiences, buying his way on to the NY Times best seller list, and on and on it goes.

            It’s not just one or two isolated incidents, though this particular blog post focused on his “penis home” commentary, Driscoll has many controversial and offensive comments he’s made over the years.

          • I’m not very familiar with him and I don’t remember how I came across this blog. My main viewpoint about him, and this is not just my view, is that we are tolerant of millions of other people who bring pornography closer to the mainstream, that share their violent thoughts through film-making, and who demonstrate extremely misogynistic desires in their music production, without hardly a complaint but because he is standing up as a spiritual leader, he is criticized for a lot less. We continue to buy fuel and food from big companies without caring how far the managers have taken their greed through bribes and threats but he has apparently tried to become a best-selling author by paying money and is given bad treatment. I think that each time someone has discussed his statements, they have not done it without discussing his character which we cannot judge. I think it’s better to hear an idea and study it if it’s worth that than to study a person.

          • Oh OK Aaron, that must be the reason behind the following controversial remarks of Driscoll. A deeper meaning.

            A pastor’s wife might be blamed if her husband has a homosexual affair

            “It is not uncommon to meet pastors’ wives who really let themselves go; they sometimes feel that because their husband is a pastor, he is therefore trapped into fidelity, which gives them cause for laziness,” he said.

            “A wife who lets herself go and is not sexually available to her husband in the ways that the Song of Songs is so frank about is not responsible for her husband’s sin, but she may not be helping him either.”

            Masturbating means you’re probably gay

            “Masturbation can be a form of homosexuality because it is a sexual act that does not involve a woman.

            “Any man who does so [masturbate] without his wife in the room is bordering on homosexual activity, particularly if he’s watching himself in a mirror and being turned on by his own male body.”

            I saw women being raped but I wasn’t there

            “It’s supernatural. It’s a whole other realm. It’s like The Matrix,” he explained.

            “You take the blue pill or you can take the red pill. You go into this whole other world.. I’ve seen women raped. I’ve seen children molested. I’ve seen people abused. I’ve seen people beaten. I’ve seen horrible things done… I wasn’t present for any of it, but I’ve seen it visibly.”

            Don’t date someone who is not Christian

            “If you are dating someone and they are not Christian, don’t even start… If you believe in Jesus and they don’t, it’s not going to be a good marriage.”

          • The last remark is the only one out of everything Driscoll has said that I agree with which is why I quoted it.

          • I understand we don’t need to speak everything that comes into our heads but if you had seen Ted Haggard’s wife, are you sure you wouldn’t have even thought it for a moment? Mark Driscoll was offensive in saying that but he might have retracted it by now being 10 years later.

          • AWJQ said,
            “I understand we don’t need to speak everything that comes into our heads but if you had seen Ted Haggard’s wife, are you sure you wouldn’t have even thought it for a moment? ”

            So you are in effect saying there are justifications and rationalizations for married people having extra-marital affairs.
            Please direct us all to the Bible teaching where Jesus, Paul, Peter or some other biblical person, said it was acceptable to have an affair on your spouse because he packs on the pounds or gets a receding hair line?

          • I was only saying that we shouldn’t be quick to criticize someone who may have spoken impulsively, from a wrong motivation, or from lack of knowledge. We may have had the same thoughts but not spoken them. Some more understanding would make us get along in peace.

          • He shouldn’t have generalized but his statement could have come from his experience. Not only is that true of pastor’s wives, it seems to be a common habit of within marriage of both men and women. You are right that he didn’t need to single out pastor’s wives.

          • The statement about a woman letting herself go and therefore not helping her husband to stay faithful is important because a lot of the initial attraction is physical. Song of Songs only talks about physical traits as being the source of attraction between both of them. Maybe the idea that Mark Driscoll is misogynistic comes from his tendency to speak separately about the responsibilities of women without trying to balance his statements out in an attempt to be inoffensive by mentioning the complementary responsibilities of the men but that doesn’t make his statements about women less true.

          • AWJQ said, “The statement about a woman letting herself go and therefore not helping her husband to stay faithful is important because a lot of the initial attraction is physical.”

            The same is true for women – women are wired to be visually stimulated. Yet, you don’t see a lot of women in Christianity hounding men to stay handsome, jog several times a week, and hit the gym, or blaming the men for why they are having affairs (if they have affairs), though I think they should probably hound Christian men about this. There are a lot of pot bellied, unattractive Christian men out there.

          • That’s the point I made; Mark was choosing just to mention women. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t think the same about men-he just didn’t mention it.

          • @ Debbie.
            At one time, Driscoll also told women not to date men who are pro-choice on abortion. I’m pro life on the abortion subject, but I found his admonishment there to be a bit heavy handed.

            I’ve given up waiting for a Christian man to marry – there is a lack of them, for one thing.

            I also repeatedly see news stories week in and out (even on Christian news sites) of Christian men who abuse women, get caught with prostitutes, or whatever, to even bother. I am now open to dating or marrying a Non-Christian man, provided he just treat me kindly and with respect.

            I’ve also been to forums for Christian women who had to divorce their Christian husband because the husband was physically or verbally abusive.
            I’ve seen story after story by Christian women who were married to Bible reading, praying, church attending men who profess belief in Christ who never the less beat up their wives or emotionally abused them.

          • About masturbation, as you mentioned it, it probably is not a normal behavior in the perfect world. We often mature physically now before the acceptable age of expressing ourselves sexually with another person so masturbation could be an outlet that wasn’t always common. He might be right that it is part of a homosexual mindset as we have almost been forced to accept homosexuality as righteous behavior and we may not be sure of the difference between our tolerance and our acceptance of homosexuality and therefore we may not know where certain behaviors come from.

          • About Mark Driscoll’s visions: there’s nothing to argue about that except that he showed bad taste in mentioning his visions-if he had them. The prophets can make people excited at whatever state their mind is in so maybe he at some point has been influenced by prophetic ministry and become over-excited. I don’t see that as big problem as all the modern churches I’ve been in get people overexcited with their music and their messages. Emotionalism brings out behavior and words that you wouldn’t normally have. He probably fancied himself as a prophet and thought he had to prophesy.

          • Lastly, this is an article I found when I was looking for your quotes. I think John McArthur’s stance on Mark Driscoll just needing some maturing is a right one. He obviously wants to serve god as a preacher and that’s a good goal to have. If he is gifted by Jesus for preaching, then our criticism should not be for the purpose of disqualifying him.

            MacArthur responds to the claim that the church should be patient with Driscoll for he will mature overtime. ‘These problems have been talked about in both public and private contexts for at least three or four years. At some point the plea that this is a maturity issue and Mark Driscoll just needs time to mature wears thin. In the meantime, the media is having a field day writing stories that suggest trashy talk is one of the hallmarks of the New Calvinism.’

          • @ Aaron.
            Driscoll is in his 40s now. His misbheavior has been going on for ten or more years now. If he’s not mature by now, he never is going to be.

            His problems at the root is that he is a bully, egotistical, hateful, sexist, narcissistic, and has a quick temper.

          • I’m sorry… Did you just call Driscoll “intelligent”? In what alternate universe?

            This man accused Queen Esther of being a slut who slept her way into power. Driscoll is most certainly not intelligent. He’s simply a misogynist.

          • Aaron said, “Have you heard him say that he is a misogynist? ”

            Driscoll does not have to say it. His crude and sexist comments about women in his books, blogs, and sermons reveal him to be a misogynist.

            From a June 2015 Christianity Today article (“What Mark Driscoll Told Brian Houston at Hillsong Conference”), referring to Mark Driscoll:

            “Driscoll also distanced himself from past crude and misogynistic remarks, calling “the perception of what I think about women…entirely my own fault.”

          • Anyone who has followers, can speak publicly, and knows how to defend themselves is intelligent. He’s not below average intelligence.

          • @ Serving Kids in Japan.
            I agree. But I also think Driscoll has a low view of men whom he considers lesser than himself.

            I’ve read blog posts by him, and articles that describe, how he regularly shames and criticizes men for being single, or married men who do not work but whose wives do work outside the home. He looks down his nose at men who are not employed with jobs that allow them to live an affluent, middle class lifestyle.
            But he most certainly has some disturbing and weird hang-ups with women.

          • This is something that supports my statement.

            Driscoll has an unbelievable mind, perhaps a photographic memory, as he is able to recall large portions of books and sections of Scripture on the spot. Admittedly, I find it frustrating that he can prepare sermons in 1-2 hours that would take me 20 hours to prepare.

          • @AWJQ.
            Based on many of the things I’ve read about Driscoll over the years (including some blog posts he himself wrote), I would not characterize him as intelligent.
            I think he is, rather, rude, narcissistic, egotistical, condescending, and sexist. And a very big bully.
            It seems to me that his offensive comments, and that he chooses to frame sexuality in a sexist way, means he must have a very low view of women in general.

          • Yes, he had a deeper intention behind it. To shock. To offend. To tear down. To hurt. To speak in a way that is not acceptable in polite company, or Sunday morning when there are women who would be hurt, as well as hundreds of children, in the audience.

            Reference Ephesians 4:29, 5:4.

        • @AWJQ.
          My understanding of Driscoll’s comment is that he was trying to discourage men from committing fornication, which he could have easily done by simply saying something to them such as, “The Bible says sex is reserved for marriage.”
          It was not necessary for him to make a reference to women which seemingly boils down their essence to being nothing but an orifice for a man’s genitals.

        • I haven’t read all of the responses to you yet, but I wanted to jump in and say this . . . if no one has posted them, please just google Mark Driscoll and you will be flooded with information about this man.

          Like you, I believe in giving people the opportunity to prove themselves over more than one comment and more than one action. I believe in looking at the big picture. I assure you the big picture speaks volumes here and the responses are not overreactions.

          This man has done great damage to individuals, marriages, his own congregation and many that his teachings touched. He hasn’t reprinted. He took off what he believes is an appropriate amount of time, regrouped and rebranded, changed locations and is starting over.

          • Also, and this was something I forgot to mention to AWJQ, but Jesus says there will neither be marriage nor giving in marriage in the afterlife. I take it, based on that, there will be no sexual activity in heaven. One’s gender in the afterlife is not going to be about having sex or the possibility of having sex.

          • I don’t know where heaven is or if it is only in the after-life so I can’t interpret that scripture.

        • @ Aaron William John Quinn.

          Hi there, AWJQ. I am a virgin woman over the age of 40, had wanted to marry, was engaged, dumped the guy, and am still single. Celibacy is not a gift, AWJQ.

          The way the Bible (particularly the New Testament) presents marriage and singleness is that both are choices God leaves up to each person, not something God “gifts” people with.

          Even though I have the anatomy of a woman, that does not make me a “penis home,” to use Driscoll’s term.

          I think I understand Driscoll’s overall point in using the phrase, in that he was trying to discourage men from committing fornication, but he chose a very poor metaphor that come across as deeply sexist towards many women.

          There was recently a very good article at another site which explains that neither gender was ultimately created for the express purpose of sex, but to be in communion with God.

          If we are allowed to provide links on this blog, I would like to give you a link to it (this link is to a page on the Christians for Biblical Equality site):
          Our Bodies Were Not Made for Sex by Tega Swann.

          Not only do some women never marry (such as myself so far), but some women are widowed, and some divorce. They are then (if following biblical instructions on sex) going to be celibate. They also cannot be defined only or primarily in terms of being possible sexual partners to men.

          • Depending on if 1 Corinthians 7:7 is describing the verse before or the verse after, singleness can be considered a gift.

            I disagree that his metaphor of a ‘penis home’ was to discourage fornication because people, or at least men according to the Bible, are allowed to have multiple spouses.

            The article is good but physically even though we don’t exist to eat, our bodies are made for food and were not created for the purpose of sex but our bodies are made for it. I think that is where Mark Driscoll is coming from.

      • Well them we cannot even remotely got to the psalms and take anything of value away from that as King David was an adulterer and a murderer and yet…..he still some how had a heart after God..hmmmm

        • King David is called a man after God’s own heart because when he did sin and realized it or was confronted with it he repented. Truly repented. Not “distanced himself” in a PR way that involves pretending things didn’t happen so that hopefully people will stop talking about them, but he “distanced himself” in a way that involved turning around and returning to God.

          If Driscoll really repented and was no longer teaching the same horrible things we could have a different conversation.

  • Men in complimentarian culture can be absolved of literally any horrendous sin (and even actual crimes- ex. josh duggar) without even an apology and other complimentarians insist that these abusers be not only let back into the fold but in charge of it, meanwhile a teenage girl who has sex once should consider herself comparable to a cup of spit for the rest of her life. This culture is abusive from top to bottom. This is Jim Jones territory.

    • Complementarian churches raises men up to the level of Jesus in many cases, but men are not Jesus. They are not God in the flesh. When we give any human too much power, they will abuse their power to different degrees – some small and some great.

      • Agree. And when comp men do abuse, comp churches go to GREAT lengths to minimize and deny, ensuring that their victims receive no real help or justice. And then they hoist the abusive men back into positions of power.

        Comp churches promise women “protection” if they sign away their claim to equality. Yet when push comes to shove, they always seem to protect only themselves. Funny.

  • This article takes what he said in a direction that is not at all what he was saying. He wasn’t saying that that’s all women are good for, he just said its a welcoming place for a husband and it is. Good grief. I was there, I’m a woman, and did not feel offended at all. Goes to show anything can be manipulated into something it was not intended to be.

    • Terry, if you believe these comments to be appropriate for a pastor to say about females, I really can’t trust your opinion on Driscoll at all. I am very sorry, but no matter what direction one goes, Driscoll’s comments are wrong.

      • What do you think repentance looks like from him?

        I followed your source and then your sources source, and it appears to me he repented and regretted what he did. How else should someone in a “celebrity” status seek repentance?

        It does seem to me that many of your concerns are taking out of context of what he means.

        I have had some concerns with him but have also learned a lot from him. You can dismiss me if you want, but I genuinely am curious.

        • What would repentance look like from Driscoll?

          Well, for starters, he could publicly apologize for his treatment of Bent Meyer and Paul Petry, and rescind the order he gave for them and their families to be shunned. And I mean specifically, not just some general “Oops, my bad.”

          It’s one of his most egregious acts of pompous bullying, and to my knowledge he has never made amends for it.

        • Justin – this issue is that Driscoll has not recanted any of his statements concerning women and has not changed his theology concerning women. It is his theology, mixed with his seeming unstable personality, that puts girls and women in great danger. Sure, he says he is sorry when he gets busted doing crazy things, but he does not address specific changes concerning women.

          • I agree with you Jory.
            I have come to learn the church is often far off with its idea of repentance and forgiveness. Often the church has come to define the words I’m sorry as repentance. If someone says I’m sorry then they should be forgiven and the relationship restored.
            God did not do this with Israel. When Israel worshiped and followed other gods and when their actions brought consequences they didn’t like they cried out to God. But God only restored His relationship and rescued them when they turned from other gods. When they had true repentance. God loved them and forgave them yet His forgiveness did not eliminate their consequences.
            Repentance is not the words I’m sorry. Repentance is a change in mindset a turning from present mindset and having a complete change in that mindset. When there is a totally different mindset your beliefs and actions are not the same as they were. Forgiveness also does not eliminate natural consequences of ones actions.
            Forgiveness does not erase what was done. Forgiveness is required by God even before repentance. Forgiveness is an act of not seeking revenge.
            For examples, if a family member when they come to your home for a visit and every time they come and your back is turned they steal from you and each time they say they are sorry and maybe even eventually they truly repent. Would you trust them immediately? No they would need to earn that trust back. So no if you were wise you would not give them the freedom in your home you once did.
            Or example of adultery your spouse kept saying sorry do you immediately trust them? No you would not. They would reap consequences from this. Consequences are God’s way of growing and changing us. If we enable others by sparing them the consequences of their choices then we are actually hurting them.
            Mark Driscoll has not shown true repentance unless he has had a change in his heart and his mindset. He should be held accountable to show the true change is in fact real.
            So by supporting him in starting another church is dangerous because it’s like putting an alcoholic in a bar right after he admits he has a problem.
            I’ve have lived with a husband very much like Driscoll they are masters of disguise. Master manipulators. They seem so sincere at the moment. I was always much to quick to believe the words I’m sorry and not give time to see if the actions backed the words. When I finally came to be more careful and wait to see if change was real it became very clear when the abuse intensified that the words were false.
            I want to encourage others to understand how God requires true repentance and change.
            God does not anywhere in his word say to say I’m sorry and if you forgive me you will resume everything like nothing happened. This is what we have been taught what repentance and love is supposed to be. But it is not Gods way. So aren’t we supposed to be striving to do as God does.
            Forgiveness does not mean trust it does not mean we are consequences free.

      • Driscoll “distanced himself” from his previous comments? Distanced himself?

        His “penis homes” comment did not cause offense to a woman who calls herself a Christian? Another referred to the comment as “inelegant”? What gives? Either these peoples’ consciences are so seared and they are lacking in discernment, or they are Driscoll sycophants.

        And, as another writer pointed out, his comments are only the tip of the iceberg. Spiritual abuse, slander and shunning of church members, plagiarism, misappropriation of church donations for personal gain, the list goes on and on. There has never been repentance. No contrition. No attempt at reconciliation or restitution.

        But has Driscoll “distanced” himself? Geographically, yes. He flew the coop, leavings thousands of church members and families spiritually wounded, and showed up in Arizona, where local church leaders, rather than rebuking him and telling him to go back home, repent, and clean up his mess, assist him in ravaging more unsuspecting sheep with impunity.

        He gets glowing free press for his new “church” in Arizona, which is a fiction housed in a P.O. Box where he can accept tax deductible donations. Pathetic.


        • I assure you not all of us pastors in Phoenix are welcoming him or cleaning up his mess. I was just talking to my husband about what we need to do now that the rumor of him opening a church here has moved to reality. I’m not okay that he came to spread his mess making in my area. I assure you most are’t okay with it. At the same time, we can’t stop him if he goes about it legally and if people choose to go and listen to him.

    • That’s right! Women are also good for meal preparation, laundry, and doing as they are told. Oh and looking sexy at all times, else their husbands might be tempted to have sex with male prostitutes and shoot meth.

      Were you also there when Driscoll said that God gave him explicit pornographic visions of his congregants having extramarital sex? It’s on Youtube, if you have forgotten, you can refresh your memory. This man is a charlatan and an abuser, and the fact that the comp establishment thinks he’s fit for any kind of leadership just shows they have zero credibility. I really shouldn’t be shocked by anything they do anymore, and yet…

    • Terry: If you are not offended by this remark and others that Driscoll has made, I have to question your judgement and your view of women. Wow.

    • REGARDLESS of whether or not these comments were intended this that or another way, they’re INCREDIBLY inappropriate (I don’t find it funny at all, honestly). Say anything even close to this in ANY other context – especially a professional context – and you’re done, out for sexual harassment.

      A pastor ought to know that. A male pastor of tens of thousands ought to be the MOST keenly aware person of the respect he affords his sisters, regardless of his egalitarian or complementarian position because that is the nature of being a shepherd: awareness and intonation with the way Jesus treated women and model that to his congregation.

  • I would call the “penis home” comment inelegant, or “too clever by half” but not Driscoll’s worst by a long shot. There are countless stories of Driscoll’s treatment of others all over the web, and my question is, does anyone in the evangelical community recognize when a person doesn’t simply need to repent, they need to be in treatment. Driscoll looks like a walking example of someone with a personality disorder.

    The constant shoehorning of any problem into a narrative of sin-repentance-restoration — is the problem. Forgive him, fine, but that doesn’t mean he should hold any position of leadership.

    • I genuinely think that Mark Driscoll may need to see a psychiatrist based off his history. I don’t want to shame him for that though. He may very well need help.

      • I understand that you’re being compassionate towards him by saying that he may need psychiatric help but I still am not sure if psychology has the capacity to explain spiritual concepts. Not to say that he is necessarily right, but I think it’s obvious that with the actions of god-followers in the Bible if psychiatry existed then there would have been some very strong diagnoses of psychosis, even though they were only doing exactly what they believed god was commanding them. Mental health may be an unfair argument.

        • I think you are continuing to make the same mistake. What is a “spiritual” problem? Google “narcissistic personality disorder” — read its definition, its causes and how they may be addressed. The trouble with this sin-repentance-restoration “spiritual” treatment is that it doesn’t recognize or address the problems of someone like Driscoll, so they will continue, finding new victims.

    • Yes, Taylor, we do recognize it. We are also shouted down by his fans when we try to say something. I genuinely hope he gets the help he needs but I also don’t believe he has done that in this short of a time. I’m even more discouraged as someone who lives outside of Phoenix and knows that once he starts preaching here I’ll be having to deal with the fallout.

  • About the closest I’ve seen to an apology to women from Driscoll was from this June 2015 report on Christianity Today (though no specific retraction of use of the ‘penis home’ terminology):
    What Mark Driscoll Told Brian Houston at Hillsong Conference

    Here is a quote or two from that page:

    —–(start quote)——
    “Driscoll also distanced himself from past crude and misogynistic remarks, calling “the perception of what I think about women…entirely my own fault.
    “I want to have the heart for the women in the future who will allow me to be their pastor that I have for my daughters,” he said, “and that is if they have spiritual gifts, and are called by God, and are godly, I want to help them achieve that intentionally and encourage that and be a support for that.””
    —–(end quote)——

    I am a skeptic. As I said in a post below, I think Mark Driscoll is an opportunist.

    I think the only reason Driscoll is doing that much is because he is buddying up to, and befriending, more Word of Faith-ish, charismatic-leaning type churches, who tend to permit women more opportunities to lead in churches, as opposed to his former associates, the Neo-Calvinists, who take a more hard stance on gender complementarianism, and are hence, very anti-woman.

    Mark Driscoll cares first and foremost about Mark Driscoll.

    If Driscoll has to flip flop his previous views on women to sound more egalitarian to get welcomed back into the fold (by more women- friendly churches and denomination), to restore his ministry, he will do so.
    -Because Driscoll wants to make a profit again, by going on speaking tours, selling books pertaining to Christianity, open another church and get tithes again, etc.

    Driscoll does not care about women or ministry or Jesus, and that has been obvious for years now.

    I personally do not even think the guy ever really converted and became a Christian. I think Jesus is nothing but a product to this guy and he views actual believers as his consumers to make a buck off.

    I remain dumb founded at the many naive Christians, some who are fans of Driscoll, who line up to defend him on blogs.

    • “If Driscoll has to flip flop his previous views on women to sound more egalitarian to get welcomed back into the fold (by more women- friendly churches and denomination), to restore his ministry, he will do so.”

      I’m glad that SOMEONE has recognised this. You have hit the nail on the head.

  • I think you people need to stop throwing stones at this man and look in your own backyard. I’m a woman and I am free to be myself. The penis home thing is being taken way out of context. I think its actually quite humerous. Fact is women have an issue with submission. These days in the church. I’m not saying the man is perfect but seriously.. Give the man a break. People who have to blog or write public letters about another person is 100% unscriptural. Its throwing stones and its persecution. If you don’t like someone in the church fine, walk away. Don’t you think you could use your time a little wiser say like encouraging someone or reaching out to the lost? Feeding a homeless person or blessing your enemy? This kind of thing needs to stop. You don’t have anything to prove by writing this and its a disservice to the Bride. Bless you.

    • I think you need to stop throwing stones at Jory and look in your own backyard. I’m a woman and I am free to be myself. Sadly, even in the church, women are so used to being objectified and viewed primarily by their relationship to men, than they can find humor in a concept so reductionist as being a ‘penis home.’ The fact is women have an issue with realizing their value as made in God’s image these days in the church. Give women a break. People who feel compelled to write rambling comments to respond to open letters are obviously feeling attacked and unloving – which is 100% unscriptural. Don’t you think you could use your time a little wiser, say, like encouraging someone or reaching out to the lost? (Shame on you!) This kind of unloving attitude has to stop. You don’t have anything to prove by your comment and you are doing a disservice to the Bride with your divisive spirit.
      Bless you.

    • I don’t need to give him a break. He’s a public personality and needs to answer for his words and deeds. He has never apologized for nor repented of the things she says to and about women which means he isn’t sorry for them and still believes them. Why would I pretend he doesn’t believe this way about women. That’s not grace — that’s denial. We are told in Scripture to judge within the body so that we aren’t judged from without. Driscoll has brought great judgment from without and the fact that people from within are still trying to defend him and shut up anyone who disagrees is why he will continue to bring judgment from without and cause people to see the Bride as hypocritical and irrelevant. My God is relevant. My Bible is relevant. Anyone or anything that prevents a perverted Gospel, like Driscoll does, is going to be called out by me.

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