Exclusive: Mark Driscoll’s resignation letter to Mars Hill Church

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October 14, 2014

Michael Van Skaik

Chairman, Board of Advisors and Accountability

Mars Hill Church

Dear Michael:

By God’s grace I have pastored Mars Hill Church for 18 years. Today, also by God’s grace, and with the full support of my wife Grace, I resign my position as a pastor and elder of Mars Hill. I do so with profound sadness, but also with complete peace.

On August 24th I announced to our Mars Hill family of churches that I had requested a leave of absence from the pulpit and the office for a minimum of six weeks while a committee of elders conducted a formal review of charges made against me by various people in recent times. Last week our Board of Overseers met for an extended period of time with Grace and me, thereby concluding the formal review of charges against me. I want to thank you for assuring Grace and me that last Saturday that I had not disqualified myself from ministry.

You have shared with us that this committee spent more than 1,000 hours reviewing documents and interviewing some of those who had presented charges against me. You have also shared with me that many of those making charges against me declined to meet with you or participate in the review process at all. Consequently, those conducting the review of charges against me began to interview people who had not even been a party to the charges.

I readily acknowledge I am an imperfect messenger of the gospel of Jesus Christ. There are many things I have confessed and repented of, privately and publicly, as you are well aware. Specifically, I have confessed to past pride, anger and a domineering spirit. As I shared with our church in August, “God has broken me many times in recent years by showing me where I have fallen short, and while my journey, at age 43, is far from over, I believe He has brought me a long way from some days I am not very proud of, and is making me more like Him every day.”

Prior to and during this process there have been no charges of criminal activity, immorality or heresy, any of which could clearly be grounds for disqualification from pastoral ministry. Other issues, such as aspects of my personality and leadership style, have proven to be divisive within the Mars Hill context, and I do not want to be the source of anything that might detract from our church’s mission to lead people to a personal and growing relationship with Jesus Christ.

That is why, after seeking the face and will of God, and seeking godly counsel from men and women across the country, we have concluded it would be best for the health of our family, and for the Mars Hill family, that we step aside from further ministry at the church we helped launch in 1996. I will gladly work with you in the coming days on any details related to our separation.

Recent months have proven unhealthy for our family—even physically unsafe at times—and we believe the time has now come for the elders to choose new pastoral leadership for Mars Hill. Grace and I pledge our full support in this process and will join you in praying for God’s best for this, His church, in the days and years ahead. Grace and I would also covet your prayers for us as we seek God’s will for the next chapter of our lives. Therefore, consider this written notice of my voluntary termination of employment.

Finally, it would be my hope to convey to the wonderful members of the Mars Hill family how deeply my family and I love them, thank them, and point them to their Senior Pastor Jesus Christ who has always been only good to us.


Pastor Mark Driscoll

  • Thoughts and prayers for the Mars Hill congregation and Driscoll family as the healing begins. Many bright days ahead.

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  • Dana

    So sad that a truly gifted bible teacher will no longer be teaching. While I don’t approve of his heavy-handed leadership style, I had hoped that there could be some method of the elders taking over the leadership of the church, while Mark would continue as the preaching pastor.

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  • Ana Cerrato


  • shadowspring

    No, he is a misogynist homophobic cruel man. He never belonged in ministry, and he still doesn’t.

  • Stephen

    Thank you Mark! You had courage to do what others such as CJ Mahany (sovereign Grace) should have done years ago at Sovereign Grace. Prayers for you Mark and your family!

  • Wennie

    Could you be anymore angry with him? Sounds like you have some resentment towards him personally that you need to let go of.

  • KPotteiger

    As a member of Mars Hill Church, I am quite sad at the loss of Pastor Mark as a teaching pastor. While there is no denying he had faults that he himself speaks of, he helped to illuminate the scriptures in such a way as to help me know Jesus more and grow in faith. Our family grew in ways we never would have guessed. I also marvel at the extreme pride that is demonstrated in these threads as in the very midst of “calling out” Pastor Mark for pride, arrogance and a lack of kindness, the very ones who state it exhibit in themselves and their actions pride, arrogance and a lack of kindness themselves. Which one of us is sinless? Oh, yes, none of us…The good news in all of this is that God is sovereign and he is not caught off guard. He knows the plans he has for us, a plan for a future and a hope!! Amen!!

  • mm

    Stepping down ia showing humility. Whatever his issues were I am so glad he is being humble enough to step down. I wish CJ Mahaney, who has completely divided sovereign grace ministries would take the same approach. Even in the midst of allegations that he knew of sexual abuse, he continues to take the helm at the main church where pastors college is. The number of churches who left SG and congregants who lwft those that didnt is staggering. One mans pride…

  • mm


  • Nate

    I do not agree with these allegations at all. A man of pride would not do the lord’s work, but focus on himself and his goals in life, not helping other people advance in their faith. He has poured all of himself in this ministry and God has blessed it. I know God will continue to use Mark, because, like it or not, God has made him in this tremendous leader I respect and will continue to follow Christ in him.

  • Bailey

    Boooo, now I have to go to a differnt church. Hope you make a different church soon

  • Carl A.

    Since when did “blameless, temperate, sober-minded, of good behavior, gentle, not quarrelsome, not covetous or greedy, not puffed up with pride, and in good repute with those outside the church” get replaced with “no charges of criminal activity, immorality or heresy” ?

  • Why was it necessary for you to drop CJ’s name? This isn’t about him and your comment was not virtuous.

  • Jon

    If you get to church for the pastor/speaker, I just wanted to let you know that you should reevaluate your purpose in your church. Just a hopefully opening reminder, I hope your comment was humor haha.

  • I’ve listened to many of Mark Driscoll’s sermons and have watched many of them on YouTube. He has helped me through relationships with significant others and how to respect those around me. All in all, I do not feel this warrants even a slap on the wrist. Mark, if you’re reading this, I hope that you start your own church. You have many supporters. You also have many supporters who are willing to back you to help you get back on your feet. There is no doubt in my mind you will lead many more to christ with this experience. Stay positive. It is just unfortunate that a few “opinions” have this disastrous effect. Grand scheme of things, this is why those who aren’t christian don’t join the church, because the church doesn’t allow for someone to be REAL. Constantly putting christians on a perfection pedestal. If you aren’t perfect, you can’t be a part of the church. Look, we’ve all made mistakes, but isn’t that what Jesus has been preaching to us since his time here on earth. Preaching to us that by nature, we as humans, are sinners. As we take the lords prayer and ask for forgiveness and ask him to come into our lives, that does not mean we are automatically going to be perfect whether your a priest, a pastor, a sunday school teacher, blue collar worker or any one else, we are all created equal. So let who is without sin, cast the first stone. Mark was a man who was real, passionate, preached from his heart and not from what he thought should of been preached because of what people thought of him. He lives a christ centered life. What is a christ centered life, if you constantly living your life to adhere to views of your peers? It’s empty. In the end, it is only between You and the lord. All in all, Thank you Mark and I want to assure you, I will follow you where ever you go. All my prayers.

  • Chris


  • Jeff

    Being Biblical, huh, Carl? Love it. Bullseye. Jesus IS compassion. It takes a long time for many of us to get there, but THAT’S what we should be aiming at, not more knowledge.

  • Tim Burke

    Mark, I want to thank you for this article and know God will do great things in and through you as one of his loved sons! Your teaching ministry has ministered to me greatly over the years and I really appreciate it. I respect your decision and the way you communicated it!

  • Brianna

    you worship Driscoll instead of God? If Mars Hill is God-filled, why would you need to leave this church?

  • Dan

    Since when did “blameless, temperate, sober-minded, of good behavior, gentle, not quarrelsome, not covetous or greedy, not puffed up with pride, and in good repute with those outside the church,” suddenly become “has always been and always is blameless, temperate, sober-minded, of good behavior, gentle, not quarrelsome, not covetous or greedy, not puffed up with pride, and in good repute with those outside the church”? Some of the accusers here were refusing to accept repentance or even participate in the process. It seems like they weren’t after repentance, but revenge.

  • Bryan

    K Potteiger I just wanted to say, “Amen, well said.”

  • CARL – HE HAS EVERY RIGHT AND MUCH REASON to state this in answer to gossip and evil speaking against him…..

  • Roy Wujatson

    Mark, I love and respect you for all the bold step you’ve taken to allow the Holy Ghost to lead. I am standing in prayers with you. I am proud of you Bro…

  • Josh

    He who is without sin…

    I’m sure not.

    No stones being thrown from here. I pray that God works this out in a way that ultimately brings Him glory, Mark back into his ministry calling and the church to a place of spiritual health and influence.

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  • Larz

    Profound Truths! Brilliantly written! Well done!!!

  • Jdao

    It is a good thing that God picks the people and equips them with his Spirit then, no matter how broken or flawed they are. He has done good things, and he has sinned, but he remained faithful to God and his Word which is what matters.

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  • Joseph Steel

    Just a thought… But wasn’t this whole situation just God allowing a dealing for all those concerned?

    Scripture tells us that God is sovereign, and this could not have taken place without God allowing it.

    So, with that view… Shouldn’t we be simply saying “Amen, Lord Jesus.”

    This is a brother in the body… Just a another member in the body… No bigger, no smaller, no more important, no less important than any other member.

    And how then should we approach this matter?

    According to scripture…

    1 Corinthians 12:25… “That there would be no division in the body, but that the members would have the same care for one another.”

    1 John 2:8-11… “Yet again a new commandment I am writing to you, which is true in Him and in you because the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining… He who says he is in the light and yet hates his brother is in the darkness until now… He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause of stumbling in him;…”

    11 But he who 1ahates his brother is in the bdarkness and walks in the darkness and does not know where he is 2going, because the darkness has 3cblinded his eyes.

  • Jenn Sweeney

    He’s saying that he didn’t do anything wrong. Instead of bei ng *forced* to leave because of misconduct he is *choosing * to leave because the situation isn;t good for the congregation or his family. That’s all.

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  • Spartan Blake

    If you can’t LIFT Up, then SHUT Up! Some of you need to get rid of your own assinine agenda by posting a comment and realize there is a very large church that needs prayer and heavenly guidance. Mark and his family need divine favor as they work through this new season of their lives. Continue to push him back down because that is your character but one day you are going to push someone that pushes back.

  • I am deeply saddened by the resignation of Pastor Mark Driscoll. He was one of the few pastors from my home in the Northwest who preached the unabridged Gospel and led many of my friends to Christ.

    I am even more saddened by those who are rejoicing in this, publicly defaming and accusing a fellow brother in Christ. You should be so ashamed of yourselves that you are shaken to the core. I am enraged at the very thought of those who have torn down this ministry to support their own devices and desires, as well as at the “news” organizations which have sensationalized this internal issue for their own gain. What a mockery of Christ.

    “Do not speak evil against one another, brothers. The one who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge.” ~ James 4:11

  • I agree. Mark, you will be missed. I’m praying for your family, and my church, MH, Albuquerque.

  • seattleyouthpastor

    Amen. It’s a tragedy for the Mars Hill community that was knowingly or unknowingly abused for 18 years, but a clear victory for the Kingdom that this man no longer speaks from a place of authority in the name of God.

  • Pastor Mark is annointed as well as Grace. In the five years my wife and I came to the belief and faith that Pastor Driscoll was the most competent and knowledgeable teacher of the Bible and his teaching style. May God continue Pastor Mark and Grace in God’s ministry. God would want it no other way. Pastor Mark and Grace may you find a new Godly home in the immediate future. God Bless you and your family and may God bring you peace and happiness.

  • Sometimes Pastors need to step aside for the good of the church! This seems one of those times. Personally I only know what I have read in Charisma online so I do not judge Pastor Mark at all but do totally respect that he did what in his option was good for the Unity of His Church. God will open other doors for him if it is his will!

  • jared jenkins

    Stop being bitter and repent of either being a homosexual or a supporter of the homosexual lifestyle as unrepentant homosexuals WILL NOT enter into the kingdom of God (1 Cor. 6:9-10).

  • Barry

    @KPotteiger – what a perfect summary and comment. Pastor Mark had his faults, like each one of us, but he has brought the Gospel to not just Seattle but the whole world. As an Australian who used to watch Mark’s sermons online I can tell you he has had an impact beyond just his church building, and I hope that this next chapter in his life will find him using his God-given talents again to reach the unsaved.
    I often do wonder why people are so quick to disparage another Christian online?

  • Katie

    Amen! U.S. Churchianity has definitely lowered the bar as far as requirements for pastoral care and leadership go.

  • Brian

    So you obviously do not agree with the black and white pages of the bible then. Driscoll may have been abrasive, but I dont think he ever spoke heresy. God’s word does not exist to make us feel good. It tells who He is. You can’t change Him to fit your cookie cutter mold that accepts some sins and disregards others.

  • Harmony

    I have gone to MH for nine years. I am a woman and a community group leader of both men and women, and teach the children at the church. Is your comment coming as someone who went to and was involved in this church? I genuinely ask, because comments like this always confuse me.

  • KJA

    Thank you Lord Jesus that YOU and ONLY You are the Judge and Jury. Thank you for all those closer to you because of the work of Pastor Mark and the many ways you used him and his wife.

    Thank you for each person who commented here, good and bad, and help those who need the scales removed from their eyes to seek You for clearer vision. Help those with logs in their eyes to seek you for their removal and help those who are still holding on to miracles see one through this situation.

    There is enough division in the world today. Lord thank you for being the binding agent to keep us together, for loving us all through our imperfections and most of all … for remaining majestically on Your Throne. In the big scheme of things, nothing else really matters.

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  • Disco

    I predict MarkD will do a bunch of speaking engagements now for money. He’ll still write books and such maybe even host his own show.
    but I sincerely doubt he’ll ever start a new church again.

    Mars Hill will still be around but it will never regain it’s glory days. And that’s ok.

  • Nathan

    If you are only going to a given church because of the pastor, then you are following man and not God. If God has planted you in that church, you should not be moving simply because of a pastoral change. I would hope that is what you were also taught there.

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  • Kay

    Seattleyouthpastor – Oh? and what evidence do you have of such abuse?

  • Nathan

    I don’t think he can say he hasn’t done “anything” wrong. He has indeed admitted to attitudes and treatment of people that do not reflect God’s control in his life. It’s not just his personality, nor just “how God made Him”. The Bible says that we become new creations in Christ. Doesn’t mean ministers don’t have flaws to work on…they are human just like everyone else. But there are standards in the Bible.

    Driscoll has had to repeatedly admit to the same failures, each time indicating that he was going to gain mastery of these issues. This is probably the best move…step away from pastoring…until he can truly get control of these issues.

  • Nathan

    Tommy – One of the worst methods of validation that we can make is to look at a result and say that someone’s methods must have been justified to get that result.

    None of this is about perfection…but it is about having biblical standards for leadership. It is indeed important to agree that nothing criminal was done in the eyes of the legal community. It’s also important to note that the folks investigating this didn’t think he disqualified himself from leadership. But let’s note…disqualification is a permanent situation. Just because he wasn’t permanently disqualified does NOT mean that he didn’t need to step away for a time period in order to get his emotions, leadership style and treatment of people under control.

    You are right about one thing….in the END it is all between you and the Lord. But in this life, you have accountability (as a leader) to the overall Body of Christ, as well as to those whom you lead. That is why the Bible has clear standards for the life and leadership exhibited by those who would be overseers.

  • Tania

    I could not have put it better myself. Thank you.

  • Nathan

    I think the world outside of MH will not truly know the reality. See, some of you who went there have nothing but glowing reports. Others who went there and were even leaders, have negative reports. Even M. Driscoll himself has admitted to problematic behavior and treatment of people. He also admitted to deceit, such as inflating his book sales.

    Considering that other people there have experiences different than yours, and considering that your pastor has personally admitted to multiple repeat issues…I don’t think it serves any purpose to attempt to disparage these others folks experience or observation of admitted issues.

  • Pasta Pete

    Just what I was wondering about Carl A……sure hope The Lord will restore him to usefulness…..very sad at the loss of such a gifted man of God

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  • So what exactly did he apologize for?

  • Nikki

    Nathan, if you stay in a church where you know the pastor is doing wrong, aren’t you putting the church body above God? Isn’t that the definition of a cult?

    Why wouldn’t ANYONE want to be a member of a flock that is lead by a man who lives his life as Jesus taught?

    I am not a member of any church and have no clue what Pastor Mark did/did not do or of what he stands accused. I don’t even know what faith/denomination of which you are all members. I know nothing of this conflict.

    I’m only posting because your words struck me as being very, very wrong.

    What is the purpose of even HAVING a pastor if one can’t believe in that pastor’s belief in God and see that faith displayed through the way he lives his life? What good is the church body if the pastor’s faith doesn’t inspire his flock?

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  • David

    i am sad to read Marks resignation letter, but based on his recent past exposures, I think it neccassary. I appreciate his humility in his decision. He has discipled me for years, though he has never met me. I’ve listened and watched hours of his sermons and have grown immeasurably over the years. Thank you for impacting me and my family over the many miles that separate South Carolina from Washington. I pray for you and your future and know that it will involve in some way leading and growing boys into men. Love ya.

  • Amen

    Agreed. Doug Phillips and Mark Driscoll at least have the wisdom to confess, repent and resign.

  • h

    I’ve attended Mars Hill Church with my family for 6 years, and no, we sadly won’t be attending anymore. Mark Driscol preached the gospel boldly, and with such intelligence and passion. I’m sorry but I need to be intellectually stimulated and Driscol’s sermons are fascinating. I will sit and learn from him all freaking day. He preaches from the bible in a way that I have never heard before and he was given the ability to do that by God for His glory. I am deeply disappointed that he will no longer be preaching at Mars Hill. It is a huge loss.

  • Jesse

    Bailey, I do not know you or your background with the church but please remember the reason for the church. We are not following a single Earthly pastor, but rather our Great High Priest, Jesus Christ. The body of Christ is meant to work together to benefit everyone and to spread the Gospel rather than only satisfy our own needs. I encourage you to stay in the congregation where you have found a place to serve and to serve wholeheartedly for the sake of the Gospel and the body. I hope this is encouraging and helpful.
    Your brother in Christ

  • Zack

    Some people’s heads will turn whatever way the wind blows. It’s just unfortunate for those standing down wind when their mouth opens. The unpleasant smells of false witness will burn the hairs right out of your nose.

  • Jesse

    Nikki, I would suggest looking through the details of the situation.720

  • Jeremy

    Sad news really. As someone who loves expository sermons, I found Mark Driscoll a phenomenal Bible teacher. Possibly the best I have ever heard. His ability to present the scriptures relevantly was second to none, and I for one hope that he can continue somewhere else in the future.

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  • M

    I am really astonished that there is not more outcry here.

    This letter neatly dodges responsibility for the allegations against him. By releasing it, he has painted the narrative he wants: pointing out that he is still qualified for ministry, questioning the validity of accusations by implying that all of those who accused him weren’t weren’t willing to meet with him, referencing how much pain this has caused him, and dismissing serious concerns over his anger, verbal abuse, misogyny, homophobia and more as “leadership” or “personality style.” – all while walking away on his terms.

    As a fellow Christian, I find this unacceptable. And I want to forestall any comments saying: but what about showing grace? And who of you is perfect? You must hate Mark Driscoll

    I am not perfect. No one is perfect. That does not mean we fail to call spiritually abusive leaders to account. Extending someone grace does not equal being nice. I do not hate Mark. I hope the best for Mark as an individual – that he might find healing and wholeness, but I absolutely do not think he is qualified to continue in ministry. I think of Ezekiel 34 and the strong words the prophet had for abusive leaders, and I pray that Mark could see the brokenness in him and how it has damaged others. And this could have been an opportunity for that – but rather than seeing a moment for bearing fruit in keeping with repentance, he walks away unchanged and with the last word.

  • xt

    I went to Mars Hill for two years 2010-2011 and had a few conversations with Mark. It surprises me that so many people are up in arms to ‘force him out’ politically. He was rough around the edges for sure. As a military veteran who was broke and almost homeless, Marks messages provided hope that my own journey mattered. A message softer pastors thought was too out of reach for their God, apparently. It only takes 5 minutes of talking with Mark to realize he is one focused and passionate dude. He cut to the core of issues susinctly and unapologetically. To be any other way would take away from his gifting. In contrast, there are other mega churches that naysayers could attend. For example Rick Warren has a softer way about him. I think there is room for both methods. We’re all different people. If you don’t like Driscoll, go somewhere else. Whose eye has that mote, again?

  • lynnsail21

    agree ,, been to his church and several groups. completely arrogant , no place for females in that church . obey your husband and be silent..

  • wes

    I agree that pastor mark is a wonderfully annointed communicator… but how can you state so emphatically that you cannot be intellectually stimulated by another who may fill the pulpit?
    Do you not hear Gods truth in guest speakers (invited and supported by Mark)?
    Just food for thought.

  • wes

    I agree…perfect people only please!

  • glen

    MD needed to leave MH in order to be true since several senior elders were fired for making much less important mistakes or for dissagreeing with him or the exective elders board. My prayer is that he stop trying so hard to defend his dignity and begin dealing realistically with his depravity. There is no avenue to God through the prior but the only way to right standing with God is through the latter.

  • lauren

    I wonder if they consider Jesus turning the money tables over as a “bad, out of control” temper?

  • GM

    You resign from a job, or a profession or a business. YOU DON’T RESIGN FROM YOUR FAMILY!!!

    No matter how terrible you are or how awful you’ve been, if your family is willing to still accept you after all you’ve done and allow you to still stay with them no matter what and YOU are willing to do all the work it takes to show your family that you will do right by them from now on and will do better in the future, YOU DO NOT LEAVE YOUR FAMILY!!! PERIOD!!!

    As long as I’ve known Pastor Mark, he has always said that Mars Hill Church was his family. His “resignation” from them shows that he still has a lot of work ahead of him because what he did sounds to me more like a decision to resign from a business or a company than his church “family”. In my opinion, it sounds more like Mark Driscoll is leaving/separating/divorcing his Mars Hill “family” (even though they still accept him) because of what he did rather than doing the Very HARD WORK of reconciling, correcting mistakes, taking the lumps, bumps and bruises, facing severe public opposition and moving forward together with your family no matter what.

    This is Very Sad. Please continue to pray for Mark Driscoll and His family.

  • Keith

    you lost an opportunity to lead Mars Hill forward because you refused to listen to the counsel of your elders (those more experienced and wiser than you)-you brought this on yourself when God gave you a gift. Everything you have is from the hand of God-not because you are “The Brand”-you squandered the riches God gave you-take some time to reflect on that and pray for healing-repent to those you have abused and move on-will pray for God’s mercy on you and your family.

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  • nathan

    It is a big call to say one can see repentance in his letter? And one can answer back with the inverse question.

    The predominate emotional tone that comes through the letter is, setting a tone of being vindicated, still hireable and conveying the status of light victimisation – referring to people who refused to be apart of the inquiry, implication of having no integrity to be involved, and being scared for his own physical safety.

    Theres an implicit picture in the letter that the board may not have stood him down for six weeks, nor fired him (e.g. he positions in the article that he chose to voluntarily step down and maybe even in spite of the board clearing him in the review ‘fit for ministry’ that he decided to resign). Saying you resign allows people to assume that he would have been allowed to stay on if he didn’t. I’m not making the point to say one needs to be viciously fired, but he has sets an emotional tone which allows the reader to assume certain outcomes. There’s no admission and empathetic response to the victimisation of others involved, but his language is restricted to how he sees himself and his own journey, ‘pride, anger, domineering spirit, personality’.

    Its a letter that ensures its made clear he is still hireable. Which in one sense you don’t begrudge a guy if he’s got a clean bill of health. It is concerning however that there is no sentiment expressed that acknowledges and verbally seeks reparation for those he has affected and hurt.

    Wish him the best and hope he gets the love and guidance to actively walk in process of sanctification as we all need to do; and hope those who have been victimised on staff and in the wider church community under his leadership in the past can see themselves walk into restoration this side of heaven in ways they need to.

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  • Pastor John

    “A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous;
    One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?) Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil. Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.”-1Tim3:2-7 http://kjavb.com

    “For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not selfwilled, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre;”-Titus 1:7 http://kjavb.com

    “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”Matthew 5:48 http://kjavb.com

    Bishop (episkopos) a superintendent, i.e. Christian officer in genitive case charge of a (or the) church (literally or figuratively):–bishop, overseer.

  • Jeanne

    once you find someone who can bring gods message to you and make it hit home, having to make do with a minister who does not connect the bible to real life is nigh on unbearable.


  • Shelly Hansen

    Hmmm…I had a different response…I think it would much better for Mark Driscoll to stay at MH and deal with the systemic and pastoring issues until they are resolved. It is possible to set up an accountability system that provides Mark Driscoll with the duty to preach, and also provides the management and accountability that prevents the kind of mismanagement that occurred regarding the staffing, finances and decision-making. What will give Jesus glory and be a witness to a watching world? I would rather Mr. Driscoll love MH so much that he remains and submits to whatever changes are needed to demonstrate to the world and to him and his family that God can certainly handle this and finish the good work He began: a good, clean, healthy functional church at MH. It makes me nervous that perhaps this resignation
    is a way to avoid the financial consequences…and I think that the MH church would step up and give generously if and only if the accountability is put into place to consistently avoid any of this drama in the future. Mark is a gifted preacher. Give it another shot and model redemption.

  • Jeanne

    Amen. Driscoll made you search your soul.

  • pammieday

    Brianna, don’t be so quick to judge…. sounds to me like this person is broken hearted and loves their pastor…. “withersoever thou goest, I shall go.” Doesn’t sound like “worship” to me. This is why I chose not to go to a church, because people are so quick to twist and judge any and all words. Peace.

  • Are you assuming that no one else in the church can preach the word effectively & accurately?

    And if that is really true about Mars Hill, than that would be Driscoll’s biggest failure as a leader of that church

  • A Mars Hillian

    I think we have to note that in the public outcry there were few people who had actual first hand experience from which to base an accusation. And the church – out of kindness and for the sake of Jesus’ name – has chosen to not disclose the faults and failings of the accusers.

    The first to tell their story usually seems right.

    Things that can be added to the things you rightly consider are: The obligation to respect the leadership of your authorities and make their work a joy. And that it’s wrong to replace that respect with an insistence on only doing what’s right in your own eyes. (That’s where the rubber meets the road in a lot of the outbursts of temper they accuse him of.)

  • pammieday

    I’m sorry. I think I’m going to vomit now! Seriously? You people have no clue how ignorant you sound. If one sympathizes with the pastor’s plight, they are wrong, if they offer condolences, they are wrong…. if they decide to support this man, who has been dear to their heart, they are wrong, if they judge this guy for what they suppose he has done, they are wrong…. and who are these people standing in judgement? What gives you the right? Sorry, but I can’t entertain stupid people any more. Wow!

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  • I just finished reading the post on Church Leaders regarding Pastor Mark Driscoll resigning his role and stepping down from Mars Hill Church.

    This is just another example of The Church covering it’s backside by crucifying its leaders. How sad. Mark led, that’s what leaders do. If the people and staff in the #MarsHill church didn’t like his style of leadership, or attitude, they could have voted with their feet and left. Instead, yet again, they chose a passive aggressive approach that reinforces The Church’s irrelevant, weak, and hypocritical PR message to the watching world.article_images-driscoll_step_down642x428_902300769

    I disagree with Marks leadership style, his dogmatic thinking, and much of his theology. I don’t think that Mark and I would ever be friends. However, I would stand with him any day, in any setting for the fact that the church he built has sold him down the river inappropriately, and without cause. For that, we share common scars. When fear infects people, instead of faith — all involved lose, the fallout is great.

    Mark should not have resigned. However, it is unfortunately the only way he and his family could possibly move on in order to with living out the gifts, calling, and passion God gave them. The Church in America is way to well known for eating it’s own and crucifying it’s leaders when their humanity shows up.

    It’s time we speak up and discontinue the gospel of punishment happening in our Church culture. This will take courage, and much grace to enter into conversations that are well known for being uncomfortable.

  • michelle

    There is still shady global money misuse fraud that hasn’t been answered to yet and may involve a criminal investigation of fraud.

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  • jeff


  • Emily

    How he conducts himself and how we respond go hand in hand. There is truth God brought to light about his character that needs to be refine. God is going before him to continue his plan. We have strong leaders in place and God will work. I support the work that God is doing because I know that he is at work in and through his child.

  • Emily

    Jeremiah 29:11

  • Emily

    Repentant and redeemed are the two words that come to mind. God is at work in and through him. It isnt to say it didnt happen.

  • Emily

    Lord thank you for your amazing grace! Thank yoy for how I see you at work in and through your child! Thank you for the eyes to see and the heart to persevere! Praying for those wounded by Marks sin! Praying for your church to remain strong and for decisions going forward! Please keep the Driscolls physically and spiritually safe!

  • Afton Keller

    I am a member at Mars Hill Church. We love Pastor Mark, regardless of his shortcomings and sins. We hate the sin, and love the sinner. Some of my family are blessed to know and have had an opportunity to love on Pastor Mark and Grace personally. We pray for their family as they face this transition and we are very sad to see him leave our church as pastor. His dynamic truth telling Bible thumping is what brought us in the doors at Mars Hill and brought our faith to full circle in relationship with Christ. There is an empty space in our pulpit at Mars Hill and it has his name on it, Pastor Mark. The place will always feel a little empty without him. Luckily for us, God will be everywhere we bring him and we do not put our faith in man but in Christ, alone. May those who were intentionally or unintentionally divisive confess their sins and stand accountable for the trouble they have brought to Christ and his church. May those who judge Pastor Mark not have sins of their own in which God will call upon them in judgement. Pray for Mars Hill that we can heal, move on and find someone who will fill some very big shoes on Sunday. Shoes that are going to plant seeds of believers throughout the world and spread the gospel.

  • Jessica

    No seems wrong or rude. Everyone is just stating what they are feeling and healthy people can validate feelings without condemning the person. I have gone to churches where I didn’t particularly LOVE the way the Pastor communicated (personality differences, styles, voice, ect.) but as long as they were communicating truth (solid truth and living it) and the body there was authentic and my family was spiritually maturing, we stayed in peace. All i’m saying is that church is not about the pastor it is about truth and fellowship (loving and encouraging one another to live for the Lord). My personal feeling is that one should not leave or abandon a church fellowship simply because of a pastor, one should pray to the Lord and seek peace about such a decision as God can bring such beauty from changes like this. I have seen it and experienced it. I am actually attending an amazing small spirit led/elder led church, no main Pastor the Elders share the preaching so no one gets burned out and there is huge accountability. The church in the past had been through three pastors one who fell on drugs and resigned and confessed on his own accord, he received a lot of love, forgiveness, and grace but he was not in a healthy place to be leading or preaching and teaching as the Bible has standards for such leaders 1 and 2 Tim. I have prayed for Mark, hope for transformation and grace in his life.

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  • Judy

    I stumbled on him last fall while reading an article about his latest book, A Call to Resurgence: Will Christianity Have a Funeral or a Future. Anyone of faith can see how that title is playing out in our country today.
    It is up to us as to which one happens. People have turned their backs on God since the beginning of time. HIs patience always runs out eventually. The people either go into exile or they turn back and sometimes even when they turn back they still go into exile.

    I listened to Pastor Mark preach the Ten Commandments, Praying Like Jesus, Genesis (46 parts) and Luke (100 parts). I learned more from him than I have any other pastor including my own. He preaches God’s word in such depth and puts you right there in the ark, in Egypt, in the upper room, at the grave. I have a closer relationship with the Spirit now than at any time in my life.

    I have been following this story for all these weeks and the progressive agenda of Professor Throckmorton to shut him down. My heart breaks for him and his family. Yes, if I found out he was coming to live in Indianapolis and preach, as much as I love my pastor I would leave to hear Mark preach.

  • Judy

    There are many churches that do not have females in leadership roles.
    Far more I bet than do. They can teach classes, they can be on staff, but
    not be a minister or an elder. His church was not an exception.

  • Ken Jones

    I thought we went to church to worship God? Just sayin !

  • Katie

    Aw thats sad-I hope you find a body of believers you can attend church with. People are sinful but the church is Christ’s bride-and I encourage you to find somewhere based on God’s word.

  • Jessica

    That is what I’m saying….

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  • Emily

    Nikki there are absolute truths when it comes to the God of the bible. One is that we have ALL sinned and fall short of the glory of God. But he has given us the gift of salvation through Jesus, restoring our relationship to God. Pastor Mark is no exception to this. He has character flaws and made some choices that had deep consequences, but has repented and sought reconcilation in many areas. In humility he has stepped down out of respect for the work God is doing, and wants to accomplish. It is a refining process as God transforms us from one degree of glory to the next.

  • steve

    I am a pastor…and have to say that at times I dislike Christians. Your self – righteousness and hypocrisy are hard to bear. Let us open the curtains to your life and secrecy. We as pastors are called to listen to, accept; understand, and counsel you through all of your faults and failures. We apply grace, mercy, and restoration to your failures. In return we get intolerance. I’m not excusing Pastor Driscoll’s shortcomings; but I am highlighting the church’s. Again…we shoot our wounded. I am ashamed. Let your self righteous condemnation commence.

  • Emily

    M stop rehashing what has been addressed and read things for yourself. It has been addressed internally and a decision has been made. GOD IS STILL ON THE THRONE! You will never be satisfied.

  • Emily

    Read your bible and ask God what ministry is about.

  • NPC-er

    P. Tommy? Is that you?

  • Pipkin

    Stupid people?? FYI, check your spelling of “judgment.” Wow is right.

  • Seattle visitor

    Mars Hill should have spun off, divided, after reaching a workable size. I visited with my Seattle family who were looking for a church home. Though we were greeted with a friendly smile, the church was so large our presence was impossible to note. My Seattle children chose a smaller fellowship where they were remembered and could feel like it was their church family. To me, mega churches easily fall prey to the things Pastor Driscoll was accused of. Mega churches don’t look like the New Testament model. If that successful winning souls in the beginning, converts need to be discipled and new churches started. I pray this talented man will discover what God has for him. This may be the Lord’s way of moving him to a new place of service. He is clearly a very good under shepherd with a heart for souls.

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  • Jon

    Yes, and there are many churches that you can go to with those values, all with different pastors. Why is it so surprising to you and many others in this thread that someone would make the pastor part of their decision when attending a specific church? You’re all acting as if the choice is between “going to church after the pastor leaves” and “not going at all”, when in fact, there’s a third, more probable choice: “going to church somewhere else”.

  • Jennifer

    If you have never met Mark -filth mouth- Driscoll – you have never been discipled as a christian.
    Jesus doesn’t talk like Mr Discoll does – Jesus is meek and humble and lowly of heart.
    I suggest you get discipled by Jesus Christ – sermon on the mount.

  • Autumn

    I’ve never heard this man preach but now I want too. Not because of the insane, hate filled, arrogant statements that born – again, Christ centered brother and sisters have left. But because I know what it’s like to be in a position of leadership agonizing over the direction my team needs to move in and knowing that not everyone will agree with me or the choices I’ve made and that leaves me vulnerable to critics who will either love or hate me. What I do know is that 18 years in ministry praying over every individual that’s commendable. The hardest job in the world is the one that oversees people. In all of these comments our prayers should be seeking God’s will in the next season of his life and that God help us discern the right path for our own selves because ultimately all of us are under the same microscope. Our fight should be Satan and his minions not with brother and sisters of the faith.

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  • Sean

    This is obviously a bit of speculation, but it doesn’t sound like he did it of his own volition, given the tenor of the letter. It sounds like a “you didn’t fire me, I quit” deal.

    Again, that’s just speculation, but it doesn’t sound like someone who is genuinely and humbly stepping aside. Just someone who’s trying to avoid the embarrassment of being fired by the church he was the dictator of for almost two decades.

  • Jason

    Lol, one of the best troll comments I have seen in a while. Someone even responded, well played

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  • Sean

    That may be true, but Jesus ate with the sinners and wasn’t antagonistic, slanderous, and outright hateful toward people who weren’t part of the kingdom. Pointing out sin and being offensive aren’t the same thing. Rattling sabers and somewhat literally preaching to the choir by saying things that are distasteful at best and hateful at worst isn’t in line with God’s word.

    If the only thing a pastor could do to earn admonition is speak heresy, then that’s a pretty messed up view of ministering to a fallen world and following the example of Jesus in everyday life.

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  • Elp

    My thoughts exactly, thank you. He took the easy way out, period. We have been attending a church in Seattle that has served as a place for dozens of Mars Hill refugees/employees, and know of so many others at other churches who have been severely damaged by his authoritative leadership style. We, too, attended for 4 years, and experienced the shunning and lack of grace ourselves. I wonder if all of you defenders would ever be willing to sit and listen carefully to each of these and decide from there what to believe? Are you saying that all of these hundreds of people who have left, thousands now, have stories that should not be believed?

  • Timmy

    “Judgement” is acceptable, and correct, spelling. FYI.

  • Elp

    Having the gift of preaching means nothing if it isn’t followed up by his actions. He became a clanging cymbal as far as I’m concerned.

  • John Tindall

    So, why speculate at all? When you know little, if anything, of the internal world and motivations of those involved, what motivates you to speculate?

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  • littlewarrior

    ‘Intellectually stimulating’ is an interesting phrase. Driscoll admitted to having no real knowledge of Greek/Hebrew (how you can do that and major in exegetical preaching I don’t know) and so played second fiddle to modern scholarship and original text.

    I heard him say some horrendous things from the pulpit. With that said his demeanour and contextualised theology helped many begin their journey to understanding who Jesus was- it is just a shame some remain at the starting blocks.

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  • KB

    You left out a few other thing . Don’t pick and choose words out of scripture.

  • KIm Batteau

    He may have a temper, but these words are gracious: “He noted that he had concluded “it would be best for the health of our family, and for the Mars Hill family, that we step aside from further ministry at the church.” Secondly, he specifically wanted to convey “to the wonderful members of the Mars Hill family, how deeply my family and I love them, thank them, and point them to their Senior Pastor, Jesus Christ, who has always been only good to us.””

  • Suzanne


  • Nancy

    Tommy, well said and I agree 100%. Jesus said, “Let him without sin, cast the first stone.” when a bunch of hypocrites were going to stone the woman who was caught in sin. Not one stone was thrown. Makes me wonder about all the “haters” of a man who has devoted his entire life to serving his God, family…have they done even one eighth of what God led him to do? I am so so sad about this resignation…Pastor Mark is the real deal. The only thing that gives me comfort is that the God that he and I serve is sovereign and He is the true judge. Pastor Mark, if you read this, please know I am so thankful for your willingness to fight for faith, to say the hard thing in a season of time that it is not popular and I can’t tell you how much I will miss your weekly teaching. Love you and your family and will be praying for you!!

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  • Sierra

    Saddened by this. Don’t doubt it might have been the best situation for him considering the circumstances but he has greatly helped me strengthen my relationship in Christ.

  • rob

    This happens all the time and has throughout history especially past 20 years. Let’s be honest anyone who has been closEly involved in Church leadership realizespecially it is not a pretty and sometimes it can be much worse than a traditional corporate setting. Not only can Pastors become puffed up, arrogant and the list goes on and on, many elders and other Church members and leaders can and it can infect an entire congregation. If you take a look at all the Church Splits over the years not only has this been a pastoral issue it’s been a entire church issue. In this situation which I have no facts except what is being reported we should take what has been said by each of the parties have said as the truth and move on. Pastor in a small church a Pastor has to fight the issue of Pride so when a church gets this size the issues faced, and I am speaking of spiritual and human issues are amplified many times over.

    Just as an example someone that takes an opinion such as yours here inside of a church and then tells other members that something must be wrong because you do not see another alternative can infect a church and cause many members to leave for another church or quit church all together. Gossip inside the Church is a Sin that causes more issues than any other and is the root of many problems

  • Algot

    How ironic.

    While they accuse Mark of arrogance, they assure us that they do not feel he is disqualified from the Pastoral Ministry.

    So, they feel that he is still qualified to be a Pastor…just not theirs.

    And he’s the arrogant one?

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  • Robyn

    I call BS. It is COMPLETELY immoral to lue, cheat, bully, manipulate, shun, and threaten congregants. So YES THERE ARE ALLEGATIONS OF IMMORALITY.

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  • William

    I agree! This is the biggest fault in the organized church today. We shoot our wounded instead of fostering the attitude of repentance and grace that is clearly scriptural. And we’re hardest on those in the ministry. No surprise though. Satan attacks the front line troops the hardest. .. and he’s not against using lies, bitterness, and self righteousness to do it. He’s very crafty.

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  • Paul

    Does this Jesus sound meek and humble? “Luke 13: 1-5 There were some present at that very time who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 2 And he answered them, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? 3 No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. 4 Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? 5 No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.” It seems like you are trying to reduce Jesus to just one or two aspects of who Jesus really was and is.

  • Paul

    Great point! Disqualification is based on current actions and not past actions. The Gospel needs to be applied here…People who were wronged or thought they were wronged need to forgive pastor Mark. Why are so few encouraging the people that were wronged to forgive Mark and to hope that God has truly changed him? This is a great opportunity for the wronged people to practice Biblical forgiveness.

  • Paul

    How many months or years needs to pass before a leader is no longer held accountable for the types of mistakes Mark Driscoll made? Should those that felt wronged by Pastor Mark be encouraged to forgive him and to consider the impact to the greater Church for going public with their complaints?Should those that felt wronged by Pastor Mark be encouraged to take ownership of the part they played in the conflicts?

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  • Geb

    Did we read the same letter?

  • Annalou Jorge

    I think he is protecting his family. You people who judge him are making a worse mistake than he made. He did a lot of positive things for the church of God, and perhaps he did piss some off. But he thought outside the box, and he injected life into Christianity for many. Just because he was unconventional does not mean he was the worst pastor ever. And I didn’t think he was a filth-mouth. Haters gonna hate no matter what the facts are.

  • Annalou Jorge

    yes. hear hear.

  • Annalou Jorge

    Seattle visitor good point.

  • Diane

    Gosh Carl—glad to know you have it all together. It’s so easy to throw scripture at others like stones. Doesn’t it seems better to allow the Holy Spirit to take the lead on this? Show me one of God’s messengers in The Bible who was perfect, other than Jesus: Elijah?—not quite. Moses? He hit that rock and was disqualified from entering the promised land. David, a man after God’s own heart? Even adultery didn’t disqualify him from God’s grace–though there were consequences. I see all that God has accomplished thru a man who has great zeal and passion for God’s Word and for people, who have been saved in great number thru Driscoll’s obedience to his calling —but sometimes the sheer power of personality can overstep boundaries. I hear his remorse–let’s not play deaf.
    I encourage everyone to be sober-minded as well, showing reverence to GOD AND those has called. Let all mortal flesh keep silent. God IS at work, faithfully completing the work HE began.

  • Annalou Jorge

    Judy so would I

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  • Trained Observer

    Well Carl A, probably around the same time that 1 John’s mention of brotherly love got replaced with trashing brothers on Warren Throckmorton’s site like you’ve spent countless hours doing.

  • Mark

    Amen! Viewing scripture through his own typical evangelical glasses to see only what he wants to see. Some sins are acceptable – even honored – among the church world, and particularly the evangelical mega-church world.

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  • Justin

    There is always a lot of debate regarding these issues because we tend to favor one side of the balance beam than the other. We can fall to the side of ignoring the wrath and serious condition between people and God (the Jesus who will crush His enemies as grapes in a winepress) or we can fall to the side of ignoring the humility and kindness that the gospel demands (the Jesus who came as a lamb to be slain) and become a burden. Unfortunately for Driscoll, he stumbles off the side that is currently least popular but has been used by God to shake many who had done the opposite. He would not be the first to do so among a list that might include Peter and later Luther. For that, I am thankful for my personal growth.

  • EW

    The claim that there was no illegality or immorality in his behavior is just a lie … plagiarism, which he absolutely committed, is illegal, and the personal decision to commit acts of plagiarism is an immoral decision. Using loads of church funds to secretly purchase your own book in order to pad sales figures and make it appear in the Best-Seller list is very questionably legal (I would argue it is not), and is unquestionably immoral.

    It really concerns me that he and the Mars Hill Board won’t admit this, even now.

  • muscleinabmw

    Well said

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  • Sean

    Because we’re talking about a man who has shown a history of publicly “repenting” of his sins while in actuality simply justifying his actions and pretending to show humility…only to do it all over again once enough time has passed to forget the previous dust ups. There’s no speculation involved in that. It’s demonstrable, documented fact. And because of that, it’s hard to read his letter (which doesn’t sound humble or conciliatory at all) without wondering what’s up.

    He barely apologizes and essentially says, “Yeah, I was mean sometimes, but what’s so wrong with that? I should probably go, though. But just to be clear, I’m not going because I did anything wrong. I’m leaving for my own sake, not so much the sake of the church.”

    If there was anything in his resignation letter demonstrating that he realized he’d actually done serious damage to the church and the people in it (as well as misused funds in a fraudulent and/or dishonest way, which is documented in several memos that have been published about both the book issues and the general fund), I wouldn’t feel the need to speculate. I would simply applaud him for seeing the error of his ways and hope that genuine change and growth would come.

    This letter shows none of that and instead displays all the hallmarks of his previous “apologies.” It’s hard to take things at face value when those things are littered with red flags.

  • Aaron Rose

    Prayers for brothers and sisters at Mars Hill as you move to a new chapter. While many of us wont know the full of this story on this side of eternity, I do know that God doesn’t need Mark (or any of us) to accomplish His will. Praise God for that! I pray that you would move forward with boldness and that Mark would heal in such a tough time. Situations like this are excellent examples to glorify Him in how we react, especially to those who throw hurtful dialogue our way. Let us respond with kindness, truth and humility knowing that we are certainly no better than those who insult.

    A brother from Dallas

    P.S. I can almost promise I misspelled or said a wrong word. Look past my mistakes to the general heart.

  • Stan McCullars

    He still doesn’t get it. Pride, anger and a domineering spirit are immoral. They disqualify one from ministry.

    He says there have been no charges of heresy. He has supported a heretic. He called a Trinity-denier, TD Jakes, a brother in Christ. That is inexcusable. It shows a lack of maturity, discernment and theological understanding. It disqualifies him from ministry.

  • Steve LaRocque

    This is very sad. I completely understand the need for Mars Hill to have an internal discussion about. This appears to be family business. I also understand that Pastor Mark allowed himself and sought after a high media profile. This didn’t allow this to be just an internal issue. However, I can’t help but feel that this has been used by a media that hates the things of God and the people who hold true to the things of God. And we, the Church, have allowed ourselves to be unwilling and willing accomplices. I would guess that most mega church pastors have similar issues. We love that attitude/confidence with things are good, but when there is a slight kink in the armor, we jump all over them. No one is perfect, all have issues that need to be worked on this side of eternity. I saw a pastor of a very large church in Northern California confess to treating his staff poorly and some poor leadership. He confessed and asked for forgiveness, made changes and continued his ministry. The public nature of Pastor Mark’s ministry likely made this impossible. I pray that he is healed up, restore and sometime in the future returns to what God created him for, to teach His Word. But church, just because you disagree with a position of someone, don’t cheer when they have troubled times. We are supposed to impact culture for the Kingdom, instead, many are allowing culture to impact the church. As a result, when someone like Pastor Mark holds firm to the truths of Scripture, culture and the church destroy them first chance they get. Pastor Mark has done great things for the Kingdom and his passion for the Truth of God’s Word has had a profound impact on an American Church that doesn’t seem to have that passion anymore. I am very thankful to him for following God’s call and I will look forward to hearing him teach again.

  • Bro


  • Jimmy

    Nailed it.

  • Nel

    1Cor 14
    34    the women must not be allowed to sepan. They must keep quiet and listen, as the Law of Moses teaches.
    35    If there is something they want to know, they can ask their husbands when they get home. It is disgraceful for women to speak in church.

    I don’t think Mark wrote this in the Bible!

  • Lauri

    That’s a pretty foolish statement. Of course compassion and love are important , but if you don’t know why you need compassion and love then you are lost. The Bible tells us to be prepared to make a defense of our faith, but how can you possibly be prepared if you don’t have knowledge. And why is knowledge a bad thing to you. Can anyone do a good job at anything if they don’t have knowledge on the subject of their occupation. Same thing with Christianity. If you follow with blind faith what good are you?

  • Dk

    Would a humble man have let church funds be used to boost his book on the NYT best seller list?

  • Michael

    A female “pastor”. We see why you didn’t like him, he taught what the Bible teaches about gender roles.

  • Jason

    Seattle Youth “Pastor”…It’s obvious you never understood Driscolls heart or listened to him preach…so I’d be careful in your judgment upon him. Besides its clear from scripture that there is no such thing as a woman pastor….so you have no authority to speak as a pastor, scripture is crystal clear…it’s to be a Godly man. So start looking at scripture clearly and maybe you should step down yourself and stop buying into liberal titles. For you have no authority to take that title or role because its not given to you in scripture by Christ. You have no mandate from the text to do so. Mark was never disqualified, and you were never qualified bibliclaly.

  • JFG

    Travis…well put, especially the observation of “passive-aggressiveness”.

    Strong leaders need their “arses” kicked by good friends once in a while! Apostle Paul possibly needed “his” kicked after pushing John Mark off the boat…oh wait…someone DID stand up to him. It’s fairly easy to see that Pastor Mark probably has some of Apostles Paul & Peter and “sons-of-thunder” James & John in him…maybe a little touch of wide-eyed prophet, John the Baptizer as well!

    Here is my “humble” recommendation to elders and leaders of churches: Mandatory once-a-year full contact / tackle football with no protective gear on a rainy day. A time when the under paid youth pastor can body slam the senior pastor into a mud puddle…the senior-adult elder can grind dirt and grass into the perfectly moussed worship-dude’s hair…and the mobilization pastor can mobilize his foot right up the back side of the starched-shirted “executive pastor”. Then get cleaned up and go out for an evening of steak and ribs (and maybe a b_ _ r!) And then get back to kingdom work. And that’s all I have to say about that.

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  • JLJ

    We have All sinned, each one of you.. only he has been caught in sin, and it was brought out for “him” to see,and for all of us to see. He and his wife is openly paraded throughout the internet of his sin ..Would you be able to stand up to this judgement, he admitted to his sin. What more would you want from him.. Praise God,he is forgiven by our Father,, I am glad that many of you are not our judge and jury because with God we have Grace and forgiveness.. I am from Minnesota, not even from Washington,,and listened to his sermon often.. He is an inspired man of God that brought me encouragement and hope. I believe the church will suffer from such a lose. There will be a time of mourning this lose. My prayers are with you!!
    But I also believe he will rise above this and go on to establish a new life that God has already planned for him and his wife and family! My prayers are with you and have been through this
    God Bless you, my heart breaks for those that were mistreated..
    But let us move on and begin the healing, and only you, each of you,can only allow that to happen..

  • Susanna

    Exactly my thoughts. Reading this left me unsettled and concerned.

  • Susanna


  • Susanna

    Sean, I am really appreciating your insightful breakdown. So often, I think people miss subtle distinctions in how a person uses language–but I see all sorts of not owning much of anything in this letter. I think perhaps another important phrase from him is, “I have confessed to PAST pride, anger and a domineering spirit.” He very decisively puts everything in a “these things happened in the past, I’ve already confessed, now I’m absolved and in good standing.” There is a clear need to establish his good reputation and overall good works. It’s sad, really. Surrounded by the Gospel, and yet not immersed in it. I’m not saying anything about saving faith, but the inability to repent and be humbled and walk through this to the end demonstrates an absence of experiencing the great hope and grace of Christ. So often, we take only tiny sips of what we have (and need) VAST stores of, in our union with Jesus. I will continue to pray for healing and restoration and freedom in all this.

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  • Susanna

    Well said, M.

    I’m surprised more people aren’t concerned by the fact that he is specifically removing himself from a situation of accountability within his local church body–from here, he can move on to whatever situation he can make on his own terms, with those who wouldn’t call him to account. It’s disheartening at the very least.

  • Susanna

    Right, that, exactly. Well said. It’s very sad.

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  • kathleen

    Satan has roared around like a lion and finally, because of those who followed and joined in his attack, won.

  • kathleen

    You are a ‘Fellow Christian’? really? Could of fooled me!

  • Whipsnard

    *golf clap*

  • Mikeh

    Nathan, i agree with you and i find it funny how many people on this thread have taken issue with the “controversial” stands that Mark and Mars Hill have made. I suppose the very clear standards only apply if they benefit their point of view.

    I believe Pastor Mark will continue to impact the Kingdom and I look forward to my future interactions with him and I pray that he can grow in those areas of leadership that he has admitted he is wanting.

  • Mikeh

    MH has 13000 attenders per week, if find it hard to believe that you and so many have direct personal experience with Mark’s leadership. If you experienced a shunning or lack of grace, imagine how the Driscoll family must feel right now….

  • Summer

    I read your accusations and I wonder if you are a christian. A real christian,..The kind Mark always spoke of. As I recall him teaching, FROM THE BIBLE, “it is not for us to judge, the only judge is God”. If you truly believe these accusations, I assume that you have concrete evidence in your hand or were there to witness these inexcusable sins. Oh! By the way did you know that we are all sinners?? That is why Christ died on the cross for us. Because we could not begin to be forgiven for all our sins without Him doing that for us. I listened to Mark for years on the internet and never learned more than I did from him. A pastor recommended Mark to me. Funny how the people who accuse him wouldn’t be present for the investigation… Hmmmmm

  • JL


  • Matt

    “Besides its clear from scripture that there is no such thing as a woman pastor”

    Well, given that this commenter’s username is “seattleyouthpastor”, and that commenter has an avatar that appears to show a woman smiling…my scientific method of deducing information informs me that, yes, there actually are female pastors.

  • Matt

    What does the Bible teach us about gender roles, Michael?

  • Matt

    Have you ever spoken critically of President Obama? How about George W. Bush? Anyone else?

    M’s comments address exactly what he/she observed (any many others have): a seemingly unrepentant and defiant resignation couched in “humility”. Am I not allowed to be angry about this?

  • Ken

    “… many of those making charges against me declined to meet with you or participate in the review process at all.” I find it very telling when those (which include former MH administrators and members) who have unmercifully criticized Mark Driscoll through the Internet and other public forums refuse to talk with the Mars Hill board about Driscoll’s alleged misconduct. I guess Driscoll was right after all this time. Go Driscoll!

  • Y

    KPotteiger you are spot on!! As I read through these comments my heart sinks at so many speaking harsh words against Pastor Mark. People get so caught up fighting each other they forget about the enemy. Your words are kind and true.

  • Ragnarok

    One would be inclined to say the same of you, Bill. See? We can all play this game.

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  • Gregory Peterson

    You’re right.

  • Kammy

    Honestly, I am not asking this in a rude, spiteful way. But it confuses me that you would say you were (as a woman) a leader of men and women. I thought that Mark taught that women are not qualified to lead men. (I am basing that on things I have read that he has written and that I have heard him say.) From an outsider perspective, from the things I have read about the church, it does seem to have an abusive history under Mark’s leadership. And honestly, everything I have seen that Mark has said, it has seemed, to me, that he is painting himself as the victim when he was in reality (in my humble opinion) the abuser. He says that he is not guilty of sin. True, he wasn’t caught having an affair, but is arrogance not a sin? Is ruling by fear not a sin? Is firing people just because they disagree with you or try to stand up to you a Godly thing to do? When so many of the people in leadership below Mark say that he treated them unfairly or led in a angry way, or by using fear, and then every single one of those pastors that complained either were laid off or resigned. You have to know that to the outside world, this looks really bad.

  • Kammy

    True Michael, according to your beloved Mark, women are just useful as places to put their penises. Silly women who try to do anything beyond house penises! You are obviously such an excellent Christian. Paul would be proud. Jesus, maybe not so much.

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  • Kammy

    True Jason, according to your beloved Mark, women are just useful as places to put their penises. Silly women who try to do anything beyond house penises! You are obviously such an excellent Christian. Paul would be proud. Jesus, maybe not so much. Maybe the pastor you refer to so disrespectfully as “pastor” is not a fundamentalist. Maybe you would fit right in with the Pharisees. Mark may know the Bible backwards and forwards, but the way he has treated people doesn’t seem to show it.

  • Kammy

    What about all the people, pastors, elders, etc. that Mark pushed down when they disagreed with him? What about the 9 that signed the letter who all got laid off or resigned because they dared to question the ethics of Mark and the church? Where is the compassion? I’m not disagreeing with your comment exactly. We all need grace. But we need to stop making excuses for arrogant abusers. And he has not showed any understanding that his actions are wrong. If he actually seemed to understand why it is wrong to be a bully, maybe some of his detractors would be more willing to show him grace.

  • Kammy

    Mark Driscoll is not Christ. He is arrogant and has never really repented or apologized for his abuse. He could know the Bible by heart for all I care, his behavior shows nothing of Christ’s love and compassion.

  • Kurt

    What precisely is “truly gifted” about this guy–that he can talk to crowds while gruffly teaching careless and misguided ideas? This is a guy whose “theology” called Esther a “slut”, who bemoans the nurturing side of Jesus (and God) as a “hippie, queer Christ”; he insults any man who embraces gentleness. This is a man who projects his own insecurities upon gays, feminists, and basically anybody who embodies more than his narrow definition of “manhood”. A man who elevates primordial, male drives as an object of worship–not “Christ-like”, not Christian, but idolatrous. “It’s not all about Jesus”–it’s about Mark Driscoll.

  • Laila

    It is deeply troubling to me that so many people are defending Driscoll, a proven abuser, misogynist, liar, and above all an arrogant man. For God’s sake, what more would convince you people that a pastor is not qualified to lead a church? Did Jesus advocate blind obedience?

    What’s more, where is your compassion for the people whose lives he ruined? You all claim to be Christians, but you support the abuser instead of the abused, and choose to turn your back to the truth.

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  • Laila

    Why would a group of abused people choose to meet with their abuser? So they could be victimized again? No. Their accusations are all over the internet, and they provided substantial evidence to back their claims.

    This is clearly a ploy by Driscoll’s marketing team to make himself appear to be the victim and to make his accusers look like cowards. And you fell for it.

  • Albert

    The comments here remind me of why I stopped going to church. The blind loyalty to such a bullying, boorish and callous man saps my faith. No sense of accountability, no concern for the people hurt. I believe in Christ, but the religion that claims his name is consumed by cults of personality.

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  • Mary

    Amen. It’s sad that a man such as this can rise to a place of leadership and abuse so many people. Then when a few get the courage to stand up to him and confront this evil, the majority that are left are so damaged and brainwashed they join Driscoll in discrediting them. It’s sick. It’s called Stockholm Syndrome.

  • Heidi

    Amen Nathan! I have huge respect for people like you who are able to keep their own opinions and biases out of situations (and out of their comments), and focus on the facts and most importantly on God and His Amazing Love and Nature! Well done!

  • Tom

    As I’ve scoured Christian responses to articles in my time, I have to say that I am so incredibly embarassed at the level of contention, pride, judgment and ignorance that comes out of too many of us. Christians arguing non points and doctrines to death in such pervesly embrassing ways that the absolute LAST thing on their mind is love. I myself have been guilty of feeding into it at times, but the closer I walk with the Lord, the more I hear what He had to say on the matter, and something we should always cherish, because it applies to each and every one of us: ”Mercy triumphs over judgement”.

  • Tom

    As I’ve scoured Christian responses to articles in my time, I have to say that I am so incredibly embarassed at the level of contention, pride, judgment and ignorance that comes out of too many of us. Christians arguing non points and doctrines to death in such pervesly embrassing ways that the absolute LAST thing on their mind is love. I myself have been guilty of feeding into it at times, but the closer I walk with the Lord, the more I hear what He had to say on the matter, and something we should always cherish, because it applies to each and every one of us: ”Mercy triumphs over judgement”.

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  • Michelle

    Well said KPotteiger

  • Scott

    Pastor Mark, I was encouraged and enriched on many occasions by your preaching and the ministry of your church in sharing your sermons freely. Thank you for your service and sacrifice. I hope you will find other avenues for fruitful service in God’s vineyard.

  • Joe

    Why is it that over and over and over again the power of god and christ are revealed to be powerless. If this man was truly on God’s side then why hasn’t He done anything about it? Why does He continue to support such evil (not saying Mars is) ministries around the world. Because God is not involved and is not concerned with man because he never was and never will be.

    Wake up people. The church tells you you’re sick, then sells you a cure. I actually have some snake oil that does the same thing and for cheaper if you want to hit me up.

  • I think it’s sad when you have cults of personality in the church.

    Jesus ought remain in the spotlight…and He alone.

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  • James

    I am a current Deacon at Mars Hill Church.

    “another example of The Church covering it’s backside by crucifying its leaders” – This is not what happened here.

    Mark Driscoll bailed without telling anybody, before the BOE could submit their findings. On top of that, the feeling many of us have is the same feeling you would have if your wife texted you that she wanted a divorce and never came home. He resigned from his church via a press release with no internal warning, communication or followup.

    Many members did vote with their feet and their wallets, so that actually happened. And they did that for very good reasons which are very well documents.

    We did not sell him down the river. It seems he sold us down the river. We offered him a great opportunity for repentance, restoration and healing, and he flamed out. You cannot say that we don’t have faith in God, because we do. We even had faith in Mark Driscoll to sort out his issues and stick it out with us – his family. And he left us holding the bag.

    “[Resigning was] the only way he and his family could possibly move on in order to with living out the gifts, calling, and passion God gave them” – This is demonstrably not the case. There was a much better way.

    If it’s true about a culture of punishment being at play here, then it’s also true that, at least sometimes, the people being punished are the folks with discernment about harmful Christian leadership who try to warn others before it’s popular sentiment.

  • Michele

    This is the reason I no longer go to church. Christians eat their own.912

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  • fred

    Funny how we insult people when something they said offends us… you are no better than those who laid the charges against driscoll but when it came to putting their money where their mouths were they all of a sudden did not want to meet to substantiate their charges…@shadowspring

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  • Tim

    It’s important to read this article. Lots of passion on this thread. Here is credible evidence of the nature of the issue. There’s valid reasons he needed to be removed. Sad yes, because a portion of his ministry touched many, as indicated by the comments. But, his repeated conduct otherwise, caused other portions of his ministry to be damaging…repeatedly. And folks, the bible says we are to know them by their fruits. We DO judge, and in the house of God we judge actions, not the heart. His own actions caused him to be judged…therefore there are consequences.

  • Debbers

    You are quite mistaken about God’s word regarding the marital roles between men and women. You should listen to Pastor Mark’s sermons about what God tells us about this, it is very enlightening. I am so sad that Pastor Mark has stepped down – I admire him greatly, have loved his sense of humor and incredible knowledge on scripture. I have learned so much. He is indeed a very flawed man though. I wish he had APOLOGIZED to Mars Hill for his part in this whole thing. I hope one day he returns but quite humbled. God Bless you Mark, Grace and Family!

  • Debbers

    He is NOT evil but flawed. Not one of us can say we are perfect. He is a brilliant theologian and I have listened to hours of his sermons and been to one of his churches. The man is an incredible speaker, and a Christian who wants to learn will definitely do so. That certainly does not make me “brainwashed”. I wanted to learn and grow as a Christian and he taught. It’s a great loss to Mars Hill that he is gone, but he does deserve correction and discipline for his temper and attitude. I know God will continue working in him.

  • Debbers

    Did you see repentance though from Mark? I did not.

  • Richard

    Through Mark’s teaching I learned more about the Word in my first 10 months at Mars Hill then I had in my previous 10 years at various churches throughout the country. In my 7+ years at Mars Hill, I never left a single sermon thinking, what an incredible man Mark is, because Mark always made it about Jesus and it was always about Jesus and I left every sermon more in love with Jesus then the week before. This was also happening all around me and in many locations as Mars Hill grew. Please don’t lose site of the 1000s of lives that were truly saved at the many campuses and all over the world because of Mark’s teachings and focus on Jesus. But do note how quickly the enemy can destroy things when we start to rely on our own strengths.

  • Sunlight lover

    He could have helped young families grow in mutual love and respect . He chose to view everything feminine with suspicion and disdain. He let his pride, sex drive, potty mouth , control freakery and naked aggression grow so much as to eclipse God’s word, sound doctrine and love. God have mercy on the many he destroyed, Lord have mercy on he and his family.
    Many church “members are always transfers who are saved.

    I truly wonder if, when all is tallied, if he led more astray than he helped.

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  • John

    At last, a small breath of fresh air amidst the noxious fumes of so many of these comments. Truth and love must go together, and either without the other is toxic.

  • Geek

    Amen. You have expressed my views and thoughts eloquently.

  • Mark Driscoll is a man of God, used by God to exalt and glorify Jesus Christ on the earth. We all come short of reflecting God’s glory in some form or another, but brother Mark dared to believe. Just look at the résumés of those chosen by God in the Bible to represent him, we are no different. If we wait for the perfect leader to lead us, we may have to wait until Jesus comes, because only He is perfect. We should support brother Mark and commit him and his dear family to the Almighty in prayer, so he will continue to be used by God in mighty ways beyond what he can imagine right now to continue spreading the Good News about Jesus Christ and saving souls and transforming lives through the Gospel of Love, to the glory of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Mark our prayers are with you, brother, your faithfulness in preaching the Good News and exalting Jesus above all things has made a deep impact in my life personally. I’m sure they accused Jesus of being all sorts of things when he overturned the tables in the temple and made a cord of whips and ran them out. I have nothing but gratitude for your faithfulness for the work Jesus has done through you, and I pray you will persevere through this storm in the work God called you to do. On the other side you will assuredly continue to find more demon possessed people and detractors, but they too will be saved and will in turn go and plant more churches, as the Gadarene did. You knew it would not be easy from the start, and you were aware of your own weaknesses and shortcomings, yet you chose to obey the Lord anyway and trust Him with the outcome. That’s more than can be said for those who flaunt their ignorance and deny you the mercy and love they purport to have been denied in their letdowns. That is the epitome of hipocrisy. These hardships will make you stronger in Christ, dear brother. All is well that ends well and in Jesus all is well with our soul. He is the calm in the storm. He is our peace! Ef. 2:14

  • Michael

    As Christians, we’re all in this fight together. Let’s pray for one another. Pull together as one, let’s not tear each other down. Pray for Mark and all involved. Let’s read our bibles, fight the good fight and pray for one another and ourselves. Love you all….

  • Frank

    Shadowspring, I My family attends Mars Hill regularly and wonder based upon what insight do you say, “he is a misogynist homophobic cruel man. He never belonged in ministry, and he still doesn’t.” Are you a member or regular attendee? Do you know Pastor Mark personally? Is it irresponsible hearsay or do you have personal experience you can bring to bear? If so, please share some details. Shed some light on this, sir…

  • Cecilia

    I feel the same and hoped for the same, Dana.

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  • Rev. Lorenzo Elliott, Sr.

    Wow! I am amazed and saddened by many of the comments that I am reading. The Judging and self-righteousness going on is beyond me. When I read about the fact that this Man of God, resigned, I wanted to read the letter to understand some of why he did this. Seeing that no immorality, lewd behavior, or sexual misconduct was the cause, WHAT’S THE PROBLEM! What, because he is a tough pastor that does not allow Church Folk to run the church and pulpit. That’s his job, and if anyone has a problem with that, talk to God about that. He has been given a mandate to Preach the Truth of the Gospel. I fear, however, that the church will seek someone with a more liberal approach to the Bible. The Apostle Paul makes it clear how liberal Christians can skew and obscure the godly message He has commanded His preachers to preach. 2Tim 4:1-4, “I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all long-suffering and teaching. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth and be turned aside to fables.”
    Further, many of you that claim to be preachers, whether woman or man, he is still a man ORDAINED BY GOD! You are totally OUT OF PLACE TO SPEAK ILL OF HIM! SHAME ON YOU! Others may speak based on ignorance, pride or lack of the knowledge of the Scriptures. Your negative responses about him only highlight YOUR lack of understanding.
    Being a preacher that is true to God will DEFINITELY CAUSE MANY would-be Christians to get angry with the man of God. That’s why the average pastorate position is approximately 4 years.
    Women have many wonderful roles in the Church of Christ. And, many of them are teaching roles, but remember, God is a God of order and not confusion. Yes, we may have women Sunday school teachers, our moms were in many cases our first teachers, but Paul is speaking about being the head of a church, or teacher of the husband as he is supposed to be the God ordained, loving, nurturing leader of his home. This is a challenge for many of you operating outside of God’s Declarative Will (Gen. 3:16-19). For those that are preaching the Gospel under the title of pastor, and not so as instructed by God (1st Tim 3:1-7), don’t think that you are right because God has not punished you, you are operating under His Permissive Will.
    I will caution all who are gloating in this pastor’s resignation, as you are not living up to how God commands Christians treat each other, Gal. 6:1-3, “Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. For if anyone thinks himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself”. Also, 1st John 3:14-15, “We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death. Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.” Think about that as you bash God’s man of God.

  • I can’t help but think of men like Moses, David, and yes, Peter who denied Christ who continued to be used by God. Have we become too demanding of church leaders? Not sure. Just food for thought.

  • Coach Rick

    It’s sad but not shocking to hear of scandal in the leadership of a “megachurch.” What’s surprising is that it was allowed to go on as long as it did.

  • Mo

    A clear victory that Pastor Mark wont be preaching wherever you are and also a Clear victory that God will open him doors, many doors to come so peak with Authority in the name of JESUS!

  • Mo

    Clearly a Victory that God will open doors for him in the name of JESUS. love you pastor Mark and keep doing what you do.

  • Josh

    Way to misuse scripture out of context!! Keep studying!

  • Eyes Opened

    Narcissism. It is running rampant in churches because of the “doctrines of men”. Read “Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing: Understanding and Dealing with Manipulative People” by George Simon, PhD.

    His behavior fits classic narcissist, victim mentality behavior.

  • Rick

    In this country we have the first amendment. We also have freedom of enterprise. Mark Driscoll, like anyone in the U.S.A. is free to speak what he believes and the organization that arose from those beliefs can hire and fire according to how they feel it will benefit their organization in accordance to their bylaws.
    Those who disagree have to prove illegality or violation of the organization’s bylaws. Otherwise, it is simply slander, and lack of courage to move on and find an organization/person they can get along with.

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    I can only imagine what that football game would look like!


    A comment from someone from the inside of the church.

    Having been a member of a church where the senior pastor blindsided the congregation at the end of a service, with news a pre written statement that he was going to another state to pursue his doctorate, I understand the emotions of the writer of this post. Again, Nobody on staff,or on the deacon board had any inkling our pastor was leaving.


    My name is an anagram of the states I have lived in.

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  • zack

    You obviously have no clue what your talking about! Even if this man made mistakes, you think God allowed him 18 years to abuse people. Who is this God your speak of? Not the creator of the universe that gave him great Bible teaching to share for many years.

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  • Shane’s

    Wether you agree with the charges or not, The Lord gives and takes away! Driscoll was not innocent! His time came! God removed him from ministry, no one else! Make no mistake about it!

  • Janine Gordley

    This man is clearly sick. Where were all the sane people while this was going on? I hope he gets serious professional help. Poor wife and children.

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  • david gaumer

    any “shepherd” who continually uses profanity from the pulpit or in any ministry has no place in the pulpit. good riddance!

  • Mark

    I seriously doubt that Driscoll is ‘homophobic’ which would mean that he fears homosexuals. Sounds to me like you are lost and need to get saved. For the Bible clearly condemns homosexuality. Remember this NEVER CONDONE WHAT GOD HAS CONDEMNED!

    Dr. E

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  • cameron
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  • Joe

    I agree, I just wonder what the bloggers would write if the likes of John the Baptist ‘you brood of vipers’! Or Paul, a number of his letters were cut from scripture because of there harshness, was alive today.

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    Useful writing – I am thankful for the specifics – Does anyone know where my assistant might get ahold of a template OT Recruitment Resignation Letter document to complete ?