Session 2 – Panel Discussion: Driscoll, Ferguson, Piper

27 09 2008

Mark Driscoll

Q: How do you handle criticism?

A: I try to turn critics into coaches and try to see if there’s at least an ounce of truth to what they’re saying.  I also pursue the serious critics so I can learn for change.  I also view people who criticize in love and hope as my friends.  The one thing that is always in the back of my mind about words this day of age with technology is that what I say is instantly transmitted, constantly being replayed, listened to globally, and permanently out there.

Q: How do you help rape victims and others who have suffered abuse?

A: I’m not going to say what Driscoll said at this point because he gets enough criticism, but I will say that Piper helped by pushing Driscoll’s jaw up and stopping his speech, I thought that was interesting.  That being said, Driscoll’s answer was that hope can only be found in the cross, which is atonement, which leads to regeneration.

Q: What do people substitute for substitionary atonement?

A: Moralistic, therapeutic deism.  Who and what a real Christian is becomes difficult to distinguish between when you’re facing this problem.

Sinclair Ferguson

Q: We see the younger generation focus on the centrality of Christ, but do you have to say about the unity of Christ?

A: We don’t realize true essentials and therefore separate ourselves from those who don’t hold all five points even though they still believe in the sovereignty of God which is one of the true fundamentals.

Q: How do you work through discouragement?

A: It does correct those things that need to be fixed in our lives and we learn from discouraging moments, but it also draws and gives us a closer sense to God.  At the end of the day, the resurrection is the sight that God has spawned for us to view.

Q: What do people substitute for substitionary atonement?

A: People take away the wrath of God which is detrimental because the wrath of God is what makes salvation so sweet.  Without the wrath of God, we would not have joy.

John Piper

Q: How is it not discouraging that every careless word will be judged? (Matt. 12:36)

A: First of all, our words are not going to be the grounds of our acceptance to God.  Also, I look at it as being judged on the judgment day, but judgement day will only consist of standing before the great white throne, being shown our sins, having them thrown out (covered by the blood), and never being reminded of that again.  The loss is the proportion of how great a reward we’ll have because either we gain a reward for our works or we get nothing (not punishment).

Q: What do people substitute for substitionary atonement?

A: What people will throw out before they try to throw out what was done on the cross is the wrath of God.  These type of people include Universalists and those who just abandon God.

Moderated by Justin Taylor.

2008 Desiring God National Conference



2 responses

1 10 2008

Regarding your comment on Driscoll’s response to the question as to how he directs rape victims to the cross and specifically that Pastor Piper pushed his jaw up to stop his speech, I don’t think that was Pastor John’s intent at all. It seemed to me that he was just telling Mark to put raise the microphone so that the people could hear him.

1 10 2008

Interesting, that didn’t cross my mind as a possibility but they may have been the case.

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