Thursday, August 17, 2006

Being Innovative Means Getting Young Men Into the Church: Driscoll

Here is a quote from Mark Driscoll (for more check here):

"The problem in the church today is just a bunch of nice, soft, tender, chickafied church boys. 60% of Christians are chicks and the 40% that are dudes are still sort of...chicks. It's just sad.

We're looking around going, How come we're not innovative? Cause all the innovative dudes are home watching football or they're out making money or climbing a mountain or shooting a gun or working on their truck. They look at the church like that's a nice thing for women and children. So the question is if you want to be innovative: How do you get young men? All this nonsense on how to grow the church. One issue: young men. That's it. That's the whole thing. They're going to get married, make money, make babies, build companies, buy real estate. They're going to make the culture of the future. If you get the young men you win the war, you get everything. You get the families, the women, the children, the money, the business, you get everything. If you don't get the young men you get nothing."

Thanks to Steve McCoy


Terra said...

Thanks for this Nick... Ajay and Doxsee were just discussing this. This raises a great point... any ideas on how to do it?

Nick Hill said...


Driscoll has some more to say on this:

See blog above on the following (see also his other postings above as well):

The Need for Cultural Immersion
Relating to Sinners
Developing Young Leaders in the Church

Also, I think we need to meet young men where they are (missional rather than seeker approach; seeker meaning you come to us because of our program), speak in a way that they understand and let the message be the stumbling block and not the culture surrounding the message (i.e. contextualization). We shouldn't expect people to come to church, but we need to go to where people are and be where they are, sharing Christ and living among them. As Dricoll's church is: we need be liberal culturally and conservative theologically (i.e. faithful to the theology and text of Scripture). Most, as Driscoll says, are either liberal theologically and liberal culturally (liberalism) or conservative theologically and conservative culturally (fundamentalism). McLaren falls for the liberal mistake, compromising theologically along with his liberal practice; Dricoll gets it right.

Anybody elses thoughts...

Terra said...

Your comments here make sense Nick..

I have heard good things about the book "Why men dont go to church"... have you read it...

Doesnt the Desiring God conference look amazing?

Nick Hill said...


I have heard of the book: "Why Men Don't Go to Church," but I haven't read it. What have you heard about it? Yes, the Desiring God conference looks good and A.J. Bliss and I are probably going to go to it; but, the more the merrier!! I ordered their DVD promo to play at church (so hopefully I will be allowed to do this). Have a great day,


dan said...

Unbelievable. Driscoll is being serious?!

Sorry, Nick, but this is the sort of thing that makes me think that we Christians are almost totally missing the boat when it comes down to understanding our identity in Christ.

However, I did laugh out loud when I read this line:

"all the innovative dudes are home watching football." Ri-i-i-ight. Nothing says "innovation" like putting your feet up, turning on the big game, sipping a beer and smacking your wife around (Superbowl Sunday is the day of the year that has the most reported cases of spousal abuse).

Good grief, I even looked this Driscoll guy up to see if he was joking and I found his blog... which only made me even more enraged and saddened. This guy has serious issues with women and any sort of man that does not fit his culturally prescribed notion of what a "real man" is.

Lord, have mercy.

Nick Hill said...


To be fair to Driscoll, he use often uses sarcasim and shocking statements to get people to think. I think you have misunderstood him. I think the point that he is making is that the gifts of men are underused in the church, that when a man wants to plant a church or do something radical, often churches just tell them to grow up or quell their enthusaism, and not encourage it and send him out. Its like C.S. Lewis said in a different context: "We castrate and bid the geldings be fruitful" (The Abolition of Man). Men's gifts are well used in the world (i.e. building businesses, etc.), but often not in the church.

Dan, I think you are right in that he could have used a little more appropriate language to get his point across: i.e. "chickafied church boys." However, I think that he is right in that there is a need for bolder men in our churches that stand up for truth and live bold Christlike lives, not men that hide behind the women and get them to do all the leading for them.

Dan, I don't think that he
"has serious issues with women," but with men that have compromised their leadership in the churches, not as you say "any sort of man that does not fit his culturally prescribed notion of what a "real man" is."

What did you find in his blog that made you more enraged and saddened?

Thanks for your response,


dan said...


Here's another excerpt from Driscoll on a recent post:

[S]ome chicks and some chickified dudes with limp wrists and minors in “womyn’s studies” are not happy because two persons of the Trinity have a dude-ish ring.

Good grief. Driscoll manages to demean women, a lot of men, and pretty much every member of the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Trans, Questioning) community, while also completely disrespecting all the very real gender issues that are raised by our feminist brothers and sisters.

Furthermore, if you go back a bit on his blog you'll also find a post about why the lead character from "24" (a TV show) is like Jesus. Perhaps the post is supposed to be humourous but I think it is rather telling all the same.

I stand by my assertion that Driscoll has issues with women and with men who don't fit his (rather unbiblical) understanding of what it means to be male. Indeed, this whole push about male leadership in the Church is troublesome to me -- but, then again, I suspect that this is an area where I think rather differently than you (the book on gender by Piper and Grudem was the main book I was thinking of when I said a few books on your reading list are rather "atrocious").

Nick Hill said...


Again, I can appreciate how you would be offended, as you often work with the outcasts of society, and would thus read his comments through that lense. However, I am almost positive that Driscoll is attacking error and not people. Although, I can admit, that he often gets pretty close to the edge (and sometimes over the edge in appropriateness) with his humour to make a theological point.

I think that it would be valuable to listen to a couple of his sermons to understand his tone of voice and the way he communicates, to appreciate some of these comments in context. I think that Driscoll is one of the most engaging Biblical preachers teaching in North America today. See:

I think that Driscoll has a good perspective on women and is misunderstood (e.g. see his recent sermon on spiritual gifts, #3).

I disagree that Piper and Grudem's book "Biblical Manhood and Womanhood" is an "atrocious" book. Their exegetical arguments must be taken seriously, especially Moo's essay! To be a complementarian and not a egalitarianist is not to be against women!

Another couple of important books following up on "Biblical Manhood and Womanhood" are:

"Evangelical Feminism & Biblical Truth: An Analysis of More Than One Hundred Disputed Questions" by Wayne Grudem


"The Claims of Evangelical Feminism: Biblical Responses to the Key Questions" by Wayne Grudem

See also the Danvers Statement:

May God richly bless you. Dan, I am thankful sensitivity and for your love for the hurting, the broken, and the marginalized,


Nick Hill said...


Also, to be fair, I do not see the Biblical Manhood and Womanhood as a primary issue but an important secondary issue (not primary issues like the deity of Christ, the substitutionary atonement of Christ, the imputation of Christ's righteousness, and the inerrancy of the Scriptures). In fact, I am a student at Gordon-Conwell where they train women pastors and have two of the most significant evangelical feminist biblical scholars actually teaching at the school: Catherine Clark Kroeger who wrote "I Suffer Not a Woman: Rethinking 1 Timothy 2:11-15 in Light of Ancient Evidence" and Aída Besançon Spencer "Beyond the Curse: Women Called to Ministry." I disagree with them, but I am still very thankful for Gordon-Conwell.