Thursday, May 19, 2022

Throw Back Thursday

 I did a short series back in 2012 called "Sex, Drugs, and Mark Driscoll". It was a four part series pointing out that Mark Driscoll got away with a lot of stuff because he was, what I referred to as, a Rock Star Preacher.

The reason I'm re-posting this today is because I think it is relevant to the conversation about men blaming women while giving men a pass.

Anyway, here it is reprinted. If you would like to read it in it's original form, go here "Sex, Drugs, and Mark Driscoll, pt 3". It would be worth it to read the comments under it including a late comment (over a year later) correcting some misinformation that I had concerning the story.

*****

Sex, Drugs, and Mark Driscoll, pt 3

Rock and roll, by nature, is misogynistic. Anyone is free to disagree with me on this one but it is my overview observation of many years.

The rock and roll mentality or attitude has creeped in among Christians and is also misogynistic. I'll start by telling a true story.

I used to frequent another blog and the blog owner, we'll call him Fred (not his real name) was a Christian, religious-right kind of guy. He had just read Steven Tyler's biography. (Steven Tyler fans, just relax. My story is more about the blog reaction than Tyler himself.)

Steve Tyler, for those who don't know (which is about three of you, right? The rest have seen him on American Idol), is a Rock Star. He was/is part of the band, Aerosmith.

Apparently, according Fred, Tyler had a 14 year old girlfriend. He took over guardianship from her parents. This girl ended up pregnant and her parents determined that she was too young to carry, birth, and care for this baby so they took her in, against Tyler's wishes, and she had an abortion. This really upset Tyler and bothers him to this day.

Fred used this story to wax on concerning how horrible abortions were, and how horrible it is for fathers who have no rights concerning abortion, which, invariably led to how horrible feminists were and on a lesser level, how horrible modern American women were.

Fred and his male commenters felt so sorry for Tyler and the terrible pain he went through as a father with no rights over the child he sired. They blamed feminism, abortion, and Fred also blamed girls for being smitten with celebrity figures and her parents for not training her better.

Now, people, understand. I'm just as pro-life as your average conservative Christian (I no longer associate with the Religious Right. They are just plain crazy. But I am conservative in many ways.)
Anyway, I'm just as pro-life as the next conservative you might meet on the street. But I'm not stupid. That fourteen year old girl did not get pregnant because she or feminists are evil or because her parents did a thing of two wrong in parenting her.

That girl got pregnant because of the "Rock Star" mentality. If 30 something Joe Schmo down the street had started wooing the fourteen year old, you can bet the parents would have laid down the law. Why? Because there was nothing in it for them. It was the parents that were smitten by Tyler's Rock Star status. Otherwise why would they have ever signed over guardianship to him?

And what the heck was Tyler doing with a fourteen year old girlfriend, anyway? My guess is that she was a model and that's how they met. But that's my guess. Anyway, Fact: Tyler getting a fourteen year old pregnant was statutory rape. If Joe Schmo had done it, he most likely would have gone to jail and would be on the sex offenders list to this day. But not Steven Tyler. Why? Because he's a Rock Star, and Rock Stars can get away with things your average Joe cannot.

This leads me to a question.

Why were the men on that blog so unconcerned with the fact that Tyler had a 14 year old girlfriend yet were ready to tear down feminism and make comments concerning gullible girls and poor parenting? Why did it not bother them that Tyler could get away with something they, most likely, could not?

Well, I have one guess. I think it's because the male fantasy of being a Rock Star is alive and well in the world and the church. Those men on that blog might have said in passing that it was wrong for Tyler to have such a young girlfriend. In truth, the hideousness of the wrong of statutory rape was completely lost on them. All they could see was a man, a celebrity, facing losing his child because of unfair laws concerning the rights of father of the unborn. They couldn't see that Tyler was using his Rock Star status to get away with breaking the law and that the parents were using their daughter and Tyler's Rock Star status to make gains of their own.

Bringing this back to Driscoll, he also has gotten away with stuff the average Joe could not. This has not been a good thing for Driscoll or the people around him. Rock Stars getting away with stuff is not good for them. Tyler suffered greatly due to the consequences of his action. He lost a child over it and from what I gather, he still mourns over it. And as we are seeing, many people around Driscoll have also suffered greatly and many have mourned over Driscoll and the time they spent in his church.

It's time for the male fantasy of being a Rock Star Preacher to be recognized for what it is. Destructive, unchristian, and unbiblical.


*****

The misinformation was about the age of the young lady in question. She was actually 16 at the time.

Here is a link to her story:

Light of the World - the Steven Tyler and Julia Holcomb Story

Also, I noted that in part 4 of my series that several ladies and I pointed out that Steven Tyler was guilty in his own way. We said something like:  "where we agreed that we didn't like the fact that an abortion was involved, the abortion was not the beginning of the problem, it was the final, violent solution chosen by a girl's family to deal with the wrongs and excesses of a man living out the Rock Star dream."

The men of the blog, including the owner, actually listened to us and realized that this story was not a good one to use to bemoan the lack of father's rights. Looking back at this story today, it is just another illustration of men jumping to the conclusion that, whatever happened, it had to be the woman's fault. Oh, and feminism was probably involved somehow.

Monday, May 16, 2022

Who Is It About, Then?

 If it's not all about men and male church leaders and what they think, feel, want and how they want to teach and direct the church, then who is it about?

Well, I'm pretty sure that if we look at the words of Jesus, we can get an inkling. There are tons of amazing examples. But  I'll pull out this one because it gets straight to the heart of the matter.

Luke 10:30 Jesus replied and said, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among robbers, and they stripped him and beat him, and went away leaving him half dead. 31 And by chance a priest was going down on that road, and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. 32 Likewise a Levite also, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, who was on a journey, came upon him; and when he saw him, he felt compassion, 34 and came to him and bandaged up his wounds, pouring oil and wine on them; and he put him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35 On the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper and said, ‘Take care of him; and whatever more you spend, when I return I will repay you.’ 36 Which of these three do you think proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell into the robbers’ hands?” 37 And he said, “The one who showed mercy toward him.” Then Jesus said to him, “Go and do the same.”

This story is not about religious leaders, except to expose their failures to represent God. As many church leaders today fail to take care of the vulnerable, broken, and wounded, so have these religious leaders failed to show God's heart toward the beaten and half-dead man on the road to Jericho.

Rather, this story is about a man who takes care of the broken, beaten, wounded and vulnerable. This is the story of what is important to God. Because it is all about the broken, wounded, and vulnerable and those who take care of them.

These are the kinds of things Jesus taught us. This is what is important. Years of men wringing their hands over what women and teen girls wear is a gross departure from what is important to God. It is a distraction away from what is near and dear to Him.

It's all about healing the broken hearted and binding up their wounds (Psalm 147:3). This is what God loves to do. And God loves those who join Him in this ministry.

Sunday, May 15, 2022

It's Not About You

 Back in the day, someone loaned me a copy of "The Purpose Driven Life".

I couldn't get beyond the first few lines of the first chapter.

The book opened up with the sentence, "It's Not About You."

My response?

"No kidding, 'it's not about me'! It has never been about me. It's always about him."

Who was I talking about when I said 'him'? My ex who is on the Narcissistic spectrum. Being married to a Narcissist taught me early on that it would never ever be about me in our marriage. It could only be about him. When people asked me why I divorced him, my short answer was, there wasn't room in our marriage for two people. Only one. And that one was never me.

As God was trying to lead me into His healing work on my heart, I began to learn that, actually, yes, sometimes it is about me. It is about my healing from Narcissistic abuse. And it was about my eventual escape from that relationship.

That book, "The Purpose Driven Life" was a huge best seller. And the message in it to not be selfish, definitely has its place. It was written by a man, Rick Warren, to all Christians. I suspect that he thought  that all others needed to hear this "Don't be self-centered" message just like he needed to hear it.

But the problem with projecting this on everyone is that it doesn't apply to everyone equally.

I gave a personal example above. Now I will tie it into the most recent To Love, Honor, and Vacuum post: "On Modesty: We shouldn't sacrifice Teen Girls Well-being for Adult Men's Comfort".

I read the post when it came out on Friday and this part kept going around in my brain.

...I had rather polite interactions with men (on Twitter) who seemed like totally reasonable guys, explaining that we were supposed to be our brother’s and sister’s keeper, and men were visual and do lust, and so women and girls should dress accordingly.

When I said, “if we’re to be a sister’s keeper, and if we know this message does harm (to teenage girls), then when does she get to matter?”, the response from several was, “that’s certainly sad, and we don’t want that to happen, but it needs to be understood how men are.”

So once again–men’s comfort matters more than women’s well-being.

And it just reminded me of the first few words of Rick Warren's book. "It's not about you."

These men live in the land of, "It's all about me". Their comfort and all Christian dialogue has to be about what men need, think, and feel. Women don't count. It's never about women, including teenage girls.

The male-centric message you teach from the pulpit hurts women and children? Sorry, that's just the way it has to be. It's all about men. Women and children need to understand how men are. Men don't need to understand how women and children are because it is all about men

Here is where Rick Warren's words should be applied. Men need to stop making it all about them. Because in God's economy, it isn't just about men.


Saturday, November 20, 2021

Borrowed Credentials (NPD)

 This title is taken from a quote from WanatcheeTheHatchet's latest commentary on The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill Podcast and drawing from his extensive knowledge of the history of Mars Hill.

The full sentence from Wanatchee's post goes like this:

"Driscoll has certainly fisked people out there for "borrowed faith" but the stories of all the men who have come and gone from Mark Driscoll's life of whom he at one point said "He's my pastor, you know" suggests that Driscoll has spent his entire ministry career running on the borrowed credentials of people who, at one point, believed in him. "

This sentence appears near the end of the post. But everything written before it soundly supports this statement.

I almost left a comment but decided against it as it would have been merely stating the obvious and was using a word that Wanatchee has been actively avoiding for good reason. The comment I was going to make was something along the lines of, Yes, this is typical Narcissistic Personality Disorder behavior.

I understand that there are many reasons why someone like Wenactchee would want to avoid mentioning the word "Narcissist". It is both a very charged word and a word that some people simple tune out for one reason or another. Also, when one uses the word one runs the risk of being accused of trying to armchair diagnose people.

So rather than use the word, Wanatchee simply lays things out with more than enough evidence. And I look at it and think, "Just another example of raging Narcissism that male church leaders have admired, given a pass, defended, given a platform."

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Critical Review of The Rise and Fall Podcast

 No, I'm not writing a critical review. I just found one that I want to keep track of. So I'm going to link it here, for now.

Sharing Many of the Same Flaws as It's Subject "The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill" Podcast puts the Blame Anywhere But Where It Belongs 

I agree with much of her assessment. I was always so frustrated with all the Evangelical leaders who promoted and gave Driscoll a platform and a pass.

Monday, October 18, 2021

The ESV Translation Is Dishonest

 And it has a particualar agenda. And the (scare quotes) "Translators" were not afraid to change the very meaning of the Holy Writ in order to MAKE THEIR BIBLE CONFORM TO THEIR PERSONAL DOCTRINE. I'm really surprised by the lack of the fear of God among the ESV translators. Do they really think that God won't call them into account for tweaking His Word to make it say what they want?

This has been said here before. It will most likely be said again. 

Deconstructing the ESV


Sunday, September 12, 2021

Well Played, Cosper

 Episode 8 of The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill podcast finally dropped on Friday. Demon Hunting looked into the weird world of Mark Driscoll's Narcissistic Personality Disorder brand of deliverance ministry.

As a side note, Cosper announced in this episode that these Podcasts will begin to come out every two weeks rather than every week. One reason given was that people who initially didn't want to be interviewed for this have been changing their minds, so they are coming forward and wanting their voices to be included in this massive undertaking.

Over all, I suppose that this is good. However, I see this as a potentially detrimental turn in one area.

Apparently there are those who are mad at Cosper for giving feminists and egalitarians too much voice in the fifth episode of the podcast. You know that podcast that I mentioned in my Mars Hill and Consumerism (NPD) post called The Things We Do to Women.

In "The Things We Do to Women" Cosper includes the voices of feminists and actually went as far as addressing the Rape Culture at Mars Hill. He didn't hit it hard. In fact, there are many of us who felt he let Driscoll and Mars Hill off easy rather than giving this issue the full attention that it deserves.

But as is common among Evangelical men, there was an outcry and one star reviews about Cosper giving voice to those filthy feminists. (gasp!!! entities far worse than pedophile pastors and repeat sex offenders that riddle the SBC.)

So in this episode, Episode Eight, Demon Hunting, Cosper again addresses the blatant misogyny of Driscoll and the Mars Hill community. But this time, he brings a Complementarian in to point it out so that the screeching Patriarchy couldn't just poo poo what was being said. The Comp dude was concerned with and opposed to the woman-demeaning culture that Mark had created, including the misogyny perpetuated in his teachings on deliverance.

This can be both good and bad. I do feel that Cosper did well to bring in that pro-woman Complementarian voice. This is why the title of this post includes "well played" in it. However, now I am worried that the egalitarian voice and the voices of trauma informed counselors might be set aside for the rest of the podcast series.

Make no mistake, what Mark taught men and women about sex and the purpose of women was spiritual and sexual abuse. And his warped teachings did, in fact, lead to a rape culture. Women were traumatized. And while it was going on, Evangelical men did not care. This fact should not be minimized or glossed over. And I hope Cosper keeps this in mind and doesn't just throw women under the "keep the peace with the patriarchy" bus.

Sunday, August 22, 2021

Narcissistic Pastors 2

 I didn't expect to write a part 2 blog post on Narcissistic Pastors.

But listening to The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill podcast put up by Christianity Today is really stirring up memories of my time in a church led by a Narcissist back in the Eighties. So humor me, if you will.

My humble little blog is, by no means, a Watchdog Blog. Even back when I was blogging a lot more, during the fall of Mars Hill, this blog was more about discussing, refuting, and perhaps some reflection.

Those of us who have studied the Word for a few years could see right through Driscoll's Scripture twisting. One of my commenters back in the day stated that Driscoll Uses the Bible as a Sock Puppet That Always Agrees with Him. Back then, it was nice to find someone else that saw this and spoke up against the torrent of people claiming that Driscoll was a brilliant Bible Teacher.

Was Driscoll a brilliant Bible Teacher? Some interviewees in the Mars Hill Podcast still claim that he is. I would counter that with this. No, he's a terrible Bible teacher. Because a true Bible teacher is more concerned with rightly dividing the Word of Truth. Driscoll was far more interested in something else. I repeat, he's a terrible Bible teacher. But, I will say this for him. He is a brilliant propogandist, able to use the Bible as a tool to manipulate, bully, and beat people up as expressed in Episode Seven of the Christianity Today series "State of Emergency".

In Episode Seven, Cosper goes into more detail about how Driscoll used the Book of Nehemiah, from the pulpit, against two elders. Cosper also brought up other ways that Driscoll used the Bible for personal benefit, to built his own kingdom while claiming he was building the Kingdom of God.

Listening to the "State of Emergency" podcast put me into remembrance of my old Eighties pastor, He is referred to in a previous post as Pastor Fred (not his real name).

Pastor Fred used to do the State of Emergency tactic all the time. He used war and battle reference and preached on Joshua and Nehemiah. He was very interested in numbers and getting people saved and plugged into our church. And the indication was that our church was the church in town that had it going on far and above any other church.

As an example of his war/battling for Jesus rhetoric, he one time said something about, sure, new converts were babies in Christ. But they were still in a war and were going to need camouflaged pampers.

One of Pastor Fred's favorite Bible verses was Matthew 11:12 From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and violent men take it by force.

He would say that it was the more aggressive ones who were able to make things happen and build the Kingdom of God. Later, thinking back, I thought a better description would be that violent men like Pastor Fred and Mark Driscoll would be the ones who were trying to take over the Kingdom of God and make it their own using bullying tactics and figurative buses to run people over. It seemed that Pastor Fred was using this verse to excuse his bad behavior just like Driscoll used Nehemiah to justify his bad behavior toward innocent and upstanding elders.

Neither view of the above mentioned verse is correct, however. Here is a link to a better explanation Matthew 11:12.

Moving on...

Episode Seven goes into the story of the bullying and maligning two elders, Brent Meyer and Paul Petry. Hearing again how badly Driscoll mistreated these two men and its relationship to his "Mars Hill Bus" and the mountain of bodies behind it quote reminded me of what Pastor Fred did to a young father in his church.

The man's name was Scott*. He was a friendly, outgoing, and charismatic person. Pastor Fred started feeling 'led of the Lord' that Scott should become an assistant pastor and would say so from the pulpit. I didn't know it at the time, but pastor Fred was publicly love bombing Scott and drawing him in. Scott fell for it, like we all did, and became an assistant pastor.

But shortly afterward, Pastor Fred began to publicly indicate that Scott wasn't working out. Scott had fallen from favor somehow and now Pastor Fred did whatever he could to get rid of Scott. Again, at the time I didn't know that Scott was going through the devaluing and discarding phase of the relationship with the narcissist. But what I did wonder was how Pastor Fred could indicate that he was "Led of the Lord" and next thing you know, whatever he felt led to do he was able to flippantly go back on. And I began to suspect that Fred was being led by something else. And now I know that something else was heavily influenced by his personality disorder.

I had a chance to reconnect with Scott and his wife sometime in the Nineties. They were going to a church  that was full of people who had been wounded in other churches and going through their own form of deconstruction. When Scott spoke about the situation, he still really didn't understand what happened. We still didn't have terms available to us in the mainstream like Narcissistic Personality Disorder. But we did have a book called, "The Subtle Power of Spiritual Abuse" which was widely circulated among all of us who were hurt by Pastor Fred.

I am glad that we have better understanding of personality disorders today. And I'm glad Cosper is taking on this subject. The more information and resources we can get out there concerning Narcissism in the church, the better equipped people will be to recognize what is going on and avoid train wrecks like Mars Hill and violent, self-serving bus drivers like Driscoll.

*Scott is his real name. I use his real name out of respect and solidarity.

Edited to add a link to this newly discovered YouTube video: Is love bombing just a process of grooming?

Saturday, August 7, 2021

Narcissistic Pastors

 I have been talking here, more specifically, about Mark Driscoll. I also occasionally refer to my ex who was also Narcissistic and a pastor and relate it to my understanding of the Driscoll debacle. But I haven't really spoken about the pastor I had back in the mid-eighties who was also Narcissistic.

Yes, clear back in the eighties. That was when I graduated from high school and college, got married and gave birth to my first child. My ex and I met in a church where the pastor was a narcissist. And like the people of Mars Hill, we didn't know he was a Narcissist. In addition, we didn't know that NPD was a thing, an actual diagnose-able personality disorder.

We'll call this Eighties pastor of mine Fred. Anyway, Pastor Fred started off looking okay just like my ex and Mark Driscoll. But as time went on, and he amassed more power and influence, it became clear that something wasn't right. Pretty soon we could see that he was more about building his own kingdom rather than God's. Before we left the state in 1989 for my then-spouse to go to Bible College, Pastor Fred was yelling at his congregation more often. He'd yell at the ones that attended Sunday night service about the absence of those who weren't there. He yelled about people not giving enough money, etc. My parents continued to attend Pastor Fred's church while we were gone. My dad continued to serve on the board. So I got to hear how things continued to spiral downwards.

You see, Pastor Fred was not nearly as smart, savvy, or decent looking as Mark Driscoll. This was also before the internet age, so he couldn't bypass the cultural gate keepers referred to in The Brand episode of The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill podcasts. So, luckily, the damage he inflicted was a lot smaller and more localized than what Driscoll has been guilty of. But that doesn't mean the people hurt were not damaged as much as the people wounded by Driscoll at Mars Hill.

Hearing the latest shenanigans of Pastor Fred from my parents in the early Nineties took its toll on me and I soon I needed to talk to someone. I was provided the opportunity to sit down with the Dean of the Bible College's wife. She listened very empathetically. But when I had laid it all out before her, the words she spoke were hard to hear. She said something along the the lines of, "You have no idea how often we hear about this situation." And she basically said that what I thought was a rare occurrence was really way more common than people knew. What she told me was devastating. It rocked my world and forced me out of my naivety.

Long before I ever heard of Driscoll, I found out the hard way that Pastors like Fred were very common. So when Driscoll appeared on my radar, I already knew that he was one of those pastors. And later I learned about NPD and knew that it applied to Pastor Fred and Pastor Driscoll and so many others.

On discussion boards, I would interact with young, naïve Driscoll lovers who didn't want to hear me bash their idol. They ascribed to me all manner of sin rather than listen to the place of experience that I had come from. They accused me of being jealous of his intelligence or popularity saying that I was too old fashioned and not hip enough to get Driscoll. They accused me of being ignorant, unteachable, prudish, and of trying to be the "bedroom police". The list goes on.

I could convince them of nothing. The Mars Hill Bus had to crash, burn, and go down in flames before they could see the truth.

And still, even after everything that went on in Seattle, ignorance and naivety concerning Narcissistic Pastors abounded in the Church. Mark was able to go to Scottsdale Arizona and set up shop again. He now pastors Trinity Church. And lo and behold, the same things are happening in Scottsdale that happened in Seattle, only worse. There seems to be an endless supply of naïve Christians willing to give Narcissistic Pastors more chances to steal money, kill souls, and destroy lives.

This is why we need podcasts like The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill. It may not be perfect. It may not go nearly far enough in dealing with Mark's horrid teachings on Gender and Marriage. But thank God, people are waking up to the problem of Narcissistic Pastors. Thank God this very real, serious, and way too common problem is being looked at and analyzed in earnest.

Monday, August 2, 2021

Narcissistic Love

 Can those suffering from Narcissistic Personality Disorder love?

It depends.

First off, what kind of love are we talking about? Agape unconditional love? Or just the love one feels at the beginning of a new conquest, chasing after a shiny new target?

Love bombing is another term used to describe what Narcissists do. Love Bombing is usually part of the initial phase of a new relationship. It is also used by cults to draw in new converts. I suppose another way to look at it is grooming as Kyle Howard describes. If love bombing and grooming are not one in the same, they are definitely closely related.

Love bombing and grooming are used by Narcissists and Predators to lure and trap their prey. By prey, I mean a new source of Narcissistic Supply.

There is some question as to whether Narcissists know what they are doing. And I understand this. I understand it towards Mark Driscoll and towards my ex husband. Perhaps I am/was deceived, but I felt like my spouse was all in and wanted to do church and marriage right in the early years. And from what many say about Driscoll, especially in the early years, he also appeared to desire to do church and marriage(s) right, as is mentioned in I Am Jack's Raging Bile Duct podcast from The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill series.

So what happened to my spouse? What happened to Mark Driscoll? Or, perhaps we should ask, what was always wrong, but became worse and more evident with time?

Well, for me, personally, a few years into my relationship with the Narcissist, we entered into a Devaluing stage.(Devaluing and Discarding). It was slow and gradual but unrelenting.

I suppose the covert Spectrum of Trust ratings that Driscoll does at his new church in Arizona is a sophisticated and thought out expression of the Devaluing process. This Spectrum of Trust is described in Inside the Driscoll "Cult" part II podcast starting at the 22:58 mark for those who are curious about such things. But Driscoll mixes up Trust with Narcissistic Supply. When someone no longer panders to him and props up his ego, their "Trust" points go down. So the Spectrum of Trust is in reality the Spectrum of Narcissistic Supply.

Remember the Karen Shaffer story from You Read Your Bible Ringo mentioned in my Mars Hill and How To Become a Tyrant post? Karen's loyalty came into question when she casually mentioned that a very young Driscoll could have used some older, wiser men around him. I used her story in the Tyrant post as an example of Driscoll's Narcissistic Rage. But the full story is also an example of Driscoll's need for Narcissistic Supply and The Narcissistic Devaluing and Discarding process.

When Karen failed to prop up Driscoll as he desired, she was not giving him the Narcissistic Supply he felt entitled to. And the moment he caught wind of her perceived "disloyalty" she was devalued from a trusted administrative assistant clear down to a heretic. Her devaluation was breath taking in speed and scope. Der Fuhrer had nothing on Driscoll and his Blitz Krieg against Karen.

Driscoll has since refined and finetuned his process of managing who is qualified to be a worthy vessel of Narcissistic Supply. That is his Spectrum of Trust rating system. 

So, can a Narcissist love? Sure, as long as his underlings give his ego the supply he requires.

After about a decade of being married to a Narcissist and being devalued by him, I began to get a warped sense of what love was. Around that time, I began meditations on The Song of Songs which was oil and wine for my wounded soul and spirit. It became a healing ointment against the subtle but consistent Narcissistic abuse I was being subject to. This is why I flipped-the-heck-out when I stumbled upon Driscoll and his abuse of women through his Narcissistic twisting and manipulating of The Songs.

Saturday, July 31, 2021

Driscoll Unqualified to Teach (NPD)

Big news rolling through the blogsphere. Big news, not new news.

Apparently Former Mars Hill Elders are saying he is still unfit to pastor and that he should step down. 

He's not gonna.

By the way, I know the news is "He's not fit to pastor" and not "He's not fit to teach." I know there is a difference in the eyes of some. But I'm sticking with my "Unqualified to Teach" because he is, in spite of stories claiming otherwise.

I was made aware of Mark Driscoll back in June of 2009 and made a post about him called SOS in the Hands of the Perverted. SOS is an acronym for The Song of Songs. I knew then and there that Driscoll was unqualified to teach on this subject. I could see, readily, that 'rightly dividing the word of truth' was the last thing on his mind. It was clear to me from the start that he had an agenda that was completely different and diametrically opposed to the Spirit behind the Song of Songs.

I will link one more post written back in the day as an example of how much Driscoll was disqualified to preach in SOS. Manipulating Scripture for Personal Benefit. This concerns Driscoll's mishandling a one specific verse (out of soooo many) in The Songs.

Back then I looked at Driscoll's misuse of Scripture as evidence of him being unqualified to teach. This was before I knew about his Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) symptoms and his Narcissistic Rage and his need for Narcissistic Supply. This was before I was even aware that NPD was a thing and before I knew the fact that my husband, at that time, also suffered from NPD symptoms (besides other things that I did know about.)

In The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill podcasts, Mark self-reports that, as a man of Irish decent, he has two moods. Pissed off and asleep. He gets a laugh out of that. Of all the negative things I point at in him, I appreciate his self-awareness on this, even though he uses it as an excuse to rage at his underlings. I appreciate it because Narcissists are notoriously un-self-aware.

But having said this, if Mark knew he had this much anger inside, as a Christian, and especially as a Pastor, he should have done what he needed to do to overcome this. He hasn't. And even more concerning, he hasn't seen this as a need within himself nor understood that this anger disqualifies him from preaching and teaching the Bible to others. 

His anger disqualifies him from teaching any part of the Bible and, exponentially, disqualifies him from teaching anything from The Songs.

Here is why. In the very first chapter of The Songs we have this verse.

Songs 1:6 "Do not stare at me because I am swarthy, For the sun has burned me, My mother's sons were angry with me; They made me caretaker of the vineyards, But I have not taken care of my own vineyard." (NAS)

This verse talks about angry brothers and their oppression of the beloved. They basically enslaved their sister and forced her to work out in the family vineyard rather than treat her like the nobleman's daughter that she was.

Even though Driscoll would like to identify as the lover in this story, and his wife as the beloved, in truth, he is far more like the angry brothers in verse 6.

Driscoll used his anger and the Bible to command women to become sex slaves, taking care of the vineyard of the sexual whims and pornographic gluttony of his manly men. He did this to build his church. And he burned and traumatized them with his words and teaching like the sun burned the beloved in Songs 1:6.

I am not using the term sex slaves lightly. Mark Driscoll groomed and trafficked the women of Mars Hill Church as Kyle Howard so aptly points out and explains. Driscoll bullied the women of Mars Hill, pressing them down to lower than the position of harlots. At least harlots receive wages for their work. Driscoll got the benefit of the sexual work of his Mars Hill women, using them as building blocks for his church/kingdom for free. It cost him nothing but propped up the machine of his empire so well. And the women got used and burned like the beloved working out in the sun in a vineyard, not her own.

Because Driscoll takes the stance of an angry, entitled taskmaster, he embodies the villains in Songs 1:6 and will therefore interpret the rest of the book through that lens. His "Good Bits" are a villainous and oppressive interpretation of a book doing violence to the actual spirit behind it. The true spirit behind is is liberating to women and anyone else who is willing to dig deeper.

You think I'm joking about the liberating aspect of the Songs? You have seen the state of the beloved in chapter 1 verse 6. Look at her now at the end of the book, after her time spent with the true lover of her soul and compare. Here she speaks again:

Songs 8:12 "My very own vineyard is at my disposal. The thousand shekels are for you Solomon, and two hundred for those who take care of it's fruit." (NAS)

In this verse, the beloved is in now in charge of her own vineyard and she decides what to do with the money made from it. Instead of being the one working in it, she has workers that she manages and pays. And she has profited so well from her own vineyard, she is able to give a substantial amount of money away.

Her relationship with her lover builds her up, enriches her, and sets her free. This is the opposite of Driscoll and the angry brothers of the first chapter. Angry brothers tear women down, steal from them, and enslave them.

Jesus said that you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free. Driscoll's version of the truth does not do this. His version steals, destroys, enslaves, and rapes.


For way more evidence of Driscoll's horrible teachings about women and sex see WenatcheeTheHatchet's supplemental reading post on the topic. It is nothing short of ghastly.