To Hell With Marriage… Oh Wait, There Is No Hell

On Sunday, former pastor and author Rob Bell expressed his support for gay “marriage” during a forum at Grace Cathedral, the Episcopal Cathedral of the Diocese of California.

“I am for marriage,” he said. “I am for fidelity. I am for love, whether it’s a man and woman, a woman and a woman, a man and a man. I think the ship has sailed and I think … we need to affirm people wherever they are.” Continue reading —>

Frankly, I’m only surprised it didn’t happen sooner. Anyone who has paid any attention to Bell’s career over the past couple of years will hardly be flabbergasted at this latest bit of funny business. He’s been retreating from orthodoxy for some time now, with the steadiness of Aesop’s tortoise – only quite a bit faster.

The word ‘love’ holds a prominent place in his vocabulary, yet it lacks any kind of biblical mooring. It’s merely the sentimentalism of postmodern times, weak-kneed and nauseatingly vapid: the kind of love that “affirms” you where you are, even if where you are is on the road to hell.

But of course, I have forgotten: Bell isn’t so sure about the whole hell thing. And if there is no hell, no place of eternal punishment for unrepentant sinners, then why is repentance such a big deal anyway? Love wins, don’t you know.

So I’ll hang with Jesus, and you hang with sin, ’cause we’ll all wind up in heaven in the end.

Bell talks a lot about God’s love. But what about God’s holiness? What about His justice? What about His fierce and eternal wrath again sin? God’s attributes are not, to borrow the words of Timothy Tennent, “like separate petals on a flower. God’s love is a just love. God’s mercy is a holy mercy, and so forth.” You cannot proclaim them in isolation. You cannot tell me of God’s love without also telling me of His wrath. The one has no meaning without the other.

The evangelical perspective, says Bell, is “narrow, politically intertwined, [and] culturally ghettoized.” We need to turn away from such “destructive” policies. We need to “die or adapt.”

Die or adapt. This, in rank opposition to the words of St. Paul: “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Romans 12:2)

We are not called to adapt, Mr. Bell. We are called to stand fast (Philippians 4:1). Nor are we called to die, at least not in the way that you mean it. Christ’s Church will endure. He will have His Bride, and she will be spotless.

You would have us abandon Scripture, Mr. Bell, for the sake of cultural Brownie points. God and His Word must bend at the behest of our postmodern whim. “Cast your Bibles to the wind and wed the spirit of the age!”

But then, as Chesterton would say, “He who weds the spirit of the age soon finds himself a widower.”

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17 thoughts on “To Hell With Marriage… Oh Wait, There Is No Hell”

  1. Amen and amen! It’s a sad commentary that Bell has garnered such a following. Or is it just a sign of the times? Either way, I affirm your comments (and Chesterson’s).

  2. Uh, this is more than crazy.

    Actually, when I first saw the title of this post I thought you were going to talk about the Methodist church that decided to refuse to perform marriage ceremonies for straights until gay marriage is legalized. http://charlotte.cbslocal.com/2013/03/18/church-wont-do-weddings-for-straight-couples-until-same-sex-marriage-is-legal/ Fortunately, though, even the non-Christian commenters seem to realize that when a church throws what God actually says out the window, they may be something, but they’re certainly not a Church worth the name.

  3. “So I’ll hang with Jesus, and you hang with sin, ’cause we’ll all wind up in heaven in the end.”
    Is this from Bell, or another source?

    Good post. Especially appreciated the reference to Romans 12 and Philippians 4:1.

  4. Great post, Corey. It’s hard to believe….and yet, it’s not. Another sad symptom of a spiritually dying culture.

    On another note, I actually took a Comparative Worldviews course online, taught by John Stonestreet (the one in that WORLD article who said “If more people say no, it isn’t inevitable.”). He’s great.

    And that Chesterton quote at the end…Awesome. Chesterton always knows just how to word things :)

    Thanks for sharing.

  5. >>You cannot proclaim them in isolation. You cannot tell me of God’s love without also telling me of His wrath. The one has no meaning without the other.

    Thank you for saying this. By doing what he does, Mr. Bell unwittingly empties God’s love of all its substance: “in this is love, [that God] loved us and and sent his son to be the propitiation for our sins” (I John 4:10).

  6. Very well said! And the title of this post…nice..that’s all I have to say. :)

    Now if you’ll excuse me I’m going to go back to spreading God’s love, the real kind that doesn’t need to be slathered on in layers of ten or more in order to be tasted. :D

  7. Thank you Corey for bringing “issues” such as Bell’s ‘deceitful lies’ out into the open. There are many being away from our Lord Jesus by so-called Christians like Bell. Time for all true ‘blood brought redeemed children of the Only True God’ to PAY ATTENTION! Colossians 2:6-8 ” As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him: Rooted and built up in him, and established in the faith, as ye have been taught , abounding therein with thanksgiving. Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.”
    Be blessed
    Stephanie

  8. Thanks for this great post, and for taking a stand for the truth of God’s Word. It’s sad to see that so many people are blindly following Rob Bell’s false teachings, and not bothering to go back to the Scriptures for themselves (like the Bereans). May God richly bless you as you stand for what’s right!

  9. Reblogged this on New Life and commented:
    Check out this great post by the Ink Slinger, a commentary on some of Rob Bell’s latest departures from the one faith and the truth of God’s Word…

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