30 January 2012

The Sword and the Shaving Brush

by Phil Johnson

"Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity" (Ephesians 6:24).

'm in Ukraine for the remainder of the week, with a fairly grueling teaching schedule. So this is nothing more than one of those "This Is Where I am Right Now" posts that Frank Turk so despises. And here's a scene from last week's seminar on the life and ministry of C. H. Spurgeon:

Oh, and there's this:

D.A. Carson has responded to Mark Driscoll's attack on evangelicals in the UK.

I'm surprised Carson didn't mention Rico Tice in his short-list of young English preachers who answer Driscoll's challenge and debunk his caricature of UK evangelicals:

See especially how Tice punctuates his comment at 3:00.

A couple of years ago, I heard Tice preach a superb, solidly biblical message on hell at St. Helen's Bishopsgate in London. He's articulate, courageous, and (as one-time captain of Bristol University's Rugby team) surely more virile than anyone who thinks manhood is best exemplified by being a spectator at cage fighting events.

Anyway, I have to say I'm also kind of surprised Carson said anything at all. In the words of a friend of mine, here's the shorthand history of The Gospel Coalition's efforts to corral Driscoll's motormouth:

· Driscoll credits (?) God with playing porn in his head
[ crickets ]
· Driscoll accuses folks of child molesting...though says he could be wrong
[ crickets ]
· Driscoll writes another sex manual
[ crickets ]
· Driscoll validates a false-gospel preaching modalist
[ crickets ]
· Driscoll says Brit pastors are weenies

Phil's signature


Thomas Louw said...

Thomas Louw said...
Well Frank Turk does not like this kind of blog post but, if you run into a post like this at Pyro you know there is truck loads of potential.

See at other blogs people will just click on by but here, someone like Tom Chantry or Robert or Rachel might just post a comment and good stuff happen.

(So expectantly rubbing my hands together and waiting…)

3:30 AM, January 30, 2012

FX Turk said...

Frank Turk is a menace and must be stopped.

DJP said...

Frank Turk is a furnace? What?

donsands said...

What a sentence and thought from the Holy Writ.

To love Jesus with genuine affection is what I long to always have with great zeal.

As I read Spurgeon this morning from his devotional: Morning & Evening, I was just fresh from reading Psalm 126.

And it is so true our Lord wants to have sincere love.

May your ministry in Ukraine be full of our Lord's Spirit & truth, and joy. And I'm certain it is.


Tom Chantry said...

Frank Turk is a furnace and must be stoked. That's my take-away.

Sir Brass said...

Frank Turk is a furnace that must be stoked and Phil Johnson is a shaving brush which must be used to clear away the fur of hereodoxy by the razor of scripture!


One upped the Chantry. :-P

Solameanie said...

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

No, folks. That didn't really happen. I just thought the meta ought to have something like this toward the beginning. And I agree with Chantry. Stoke-on-Trent? Nope. More like Stoke-on-Frank. ;)

Jay Beerley said...

Will totally off topic comments get moderated? DJP, we need Proverbs book in ebook form! I'm sure I'm not the only one to say it, just wanted to be the latest.

James S said...

That's funny, the crickets thing and then the last one.
I can just see the brits going around saying "This just isn't done!"
and "You'll be hearing from my solicitor, young man!"
All this in good humor, I love the Brits.

Carson hit the nail on the head. Rico Tice is another one, yes. There are actually a good amount of young british preachers who teach truly biblical christianity. Mike Reeves was another one he could have mentioned. Paul Blackham too.

James S said...

Let me throw in a couple more unkown names, Andrew Evans and Simon Austen.
And we can't forget the brothers Levy (Paul & Steve).
I've been edified listening these men for a couple years at least.

Austen in particular has a great series at his church on what happens when we die. He's also written some good books. The Proclamation Trust has a good audio series by him from 2006 on Ephesians as well.

If I had the time I could make a huge list of young British biblically-true preachers, but I'm not going to. First of all, I don't see what a person's age has to do with biblically-accurate preaching in the first place. The ONLY thing that should matter is whether one IS biblically-accurate.

donsands said...

"There are actually a good amount of young british preachers who teach truly biblical christianity."

And Adrian Warnock as well is quite a fine minister of truth, and friend to the TeamPyro Amigos.

Dr. Don Carson continues to be a strong leader in the world, and especially the hosehold of faith.

Aaron said...

Please do not stoke Frank. He's bad enough as it is without people stirring him up.



I'm sure the fortune tellers in Seattle are pretty upset with Discoll right now. Putting out a sign on the street that says "Psychic Readings" just isn't going to cut it in that market anymore.

homefront said...

I love you guys at Pyro. Thank you so much for all the information you share with us. I have been following the whole Driscoll thing with interest (have many friends who attend his church) but today's post was of greater interest to me. I'd never heard of Rico Tice, and his description of himself at 16, an unbelieving rugby player, arguing with God, etc. This mirrors my own son's exact experience. Same age, same sport, same lines. I am so grateful to have this complete(found it on youtube) message to show my son. I'll post the results if God should choose to use it to speak to his heart. thanks so much!

Steve Talas said...

Well speaking as a Brit, I have to say the more I learn over time about the weird and wacky world of Driscoll and his antics in and outside of Mars Hill, the more I am convinced that he comes across less a theologian and a pastor and more of a 'bully and a thug'. He may well feel enamoured with the growth of his particular brand of Church in the States, but I can assure you if some of these antics were practiced over here, at best, he and his fanbase would probably wind up all over the front cover of the 'Daily Mail' and at the very worst run the serious risk of taking up residence in a 6x9 at Her Majesty's pleasure. Just saying!

Steve Talas said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Evan said...

For what it's worth, Mark's own comments on the issue:


trogdor said...

I don't find the crickets the least bit amusing. A strong condemnation from TGC leadership, and Carson in particular, had significant potential to stop the ER debacle. Instead we got this wait and see response, and group waiting until basically the last minute to ask for it to stop. Gee, thanks guys.

Would it be too harsh for me to compare TGC leadership to the Kennedy administration with the Bay of Pigs? "Fight for the gospel! We're with you! Oh, the battle's started? Sorry, you're on your own."

Darlene said...

Some get their kicks from champagne, mere alcohol doesn't thrill me at all, but I get a kick out of Pyro-folks! I really do.

Anonymous said...

As I commented on D.A. Carson's post...

It seems odd that Driscoll would complain about a lack of well known Bible teachers in the UK when he recently announced to the world that heretic TD Jakes is a Trinitarian. His "questioning" of Jakes did little more than demonstrate Driscoll's own lack of understanding, Biblically and historically, of the Trinity.

Two well known "Bible teachers" and so little cumulative Bible knowledge. Tragic.

FX Turk said...

I'd like to add that, to this day, that "Free Blogging Advice" is one of my favorite blog posts.


Tom Chantry said...


Two completely unrelated topics in one post.

Does that make this an open thread?

Joel Knight said...

Long time reader (blah, blah, blah)

As an Englishman I'd heartily recommend Tice to you, heard him speak on evangelism a few weeks ago, "we preach Christ, God opens blind eyes." Classic Tice. However I'd question the focus on people anyway (started by Driscoll yes but I'm not sure Carson needed to buy into the whole 'check out these guys' thing. We tend to know Churches in the UK more than we know people, and there are lots of faithful Churches who are preaching the Bible and proclaiming Christ faithfully all over the country. There are nowhere near enough of course and we must all do more.

Would like to know where Carson gets his figures from, seems a suspiciously low number of church goers in Yorkshire considering the figures apparently include all church goers and not just evangelicals. However, the North East (where Yorkshire is) is a very, very hard place to minister the Gospel so I wouldn't be too shocked. There's a whole load of big Northern towns without a traditional university which don't have an awfully lot going on in them to my knowledge.

Anyway, thanks for the blog Mr Turk and Mr Johnson and thanks for the book Mr Phillips. If I'm not allowed to offer thanks in the comments I'm sorry, Mr Chantry declared an open thread.

Graham and Nicola said...

In our experience, the English won't be experiencing bruised egos. They'll just be horrified that such a young man could be so ill-mannered on the radio!
And, actually, if you read the English Evangelical blogs that responded, they're just bewildered by the chutzpah. We doubt that Rico Tice would be offended. And we'd probably add Michael Ramsden to the list.
Nicola's father is a Pastor of a small Church in Wales. Frankly, we'd think that his ministry is more suited to the regions than Driscoll's or Furtick's. Or a MacArthur's or a Piper's, for that matter. It might be worth considering that God has called each minister to a specific station.

Henry said...

As a Brit, from all the different UK churches I have visited I think Driscoll is fairly accurate about the limp-wristed-ness of so much of UK churches. The young single male who is not effeminate is very rare. Pity the ladies. Not sure I agree with very much with Carson's corrective.

Raine said...

Anyone think it's possible Driscoll's in denial on Jakes issue? I heard his sermon on the trinity in the Doctrine series and I thought it was pretty good. Maybe it's his childish nature in him refusing him to admit he's wrong?

Sir Brass said...

Graham said, "Frankly, we'd think that his ministry is more suited to the regions than Driscoll's or Furtick's. Or a MacArthur's or a Piper's, for that matter. It might be worth considering that God has called each minister to a specific station." (bolding mine)




Driscoll would be wise if he read those words and considered them humbly.

Rachael Starke said...

DG Pastors Conference alert:

Doug WIlson threatens to come after all the emo pastors' soul patches with a sword and a shaving brush.

News at eleven.

Sir Brass said...

Doug Wilson to soul-patch pastors:

Go beard or go home.

Phil Johnson said...

Over on FaceBook, someone pressed me to say whether or not I "appreciated" Carson's defense of British evangelicalism. My reply:

I'd prefer to leave it to my UK brethren to analyze the state of evangelicalism on their side of the Atlantic. As a frequent visitor to the UK, I'm not sure it's appropriate for Americans (or Canadian Americans) to speak as if they had special expertise or some paternalistic interest in explaining Pommy evangelicalism to the British or to Americans. To be candid: I thought both Driscoll and Carson would have done well to keep silent in this instance. They both had other, more pressing issues at home demanding their attention.

I've tried to be clear about this: I don't think either Driscoll or Carson has done a very good job lately dealing with the astonishing mess the American evangelical movement has become (and both of them have helped create the mess in their own ways). If they want to offer advice, a critique, a defense, or a scolding, they really have enough fodder on this continent to keep them busy for many years to come without ruffling the feathers of (or behaving condescendingly toward) our brothers and sisters in the UK.