Another quote from Mark Driscoll which speaks, once again, to the fact that I am completely mystified as to why 5000 people are willing to sit through hour long sermons by him every week (this is from the sermon at Mars Hill on 3/18/07)
Some people, they believe in this thing called confidentiality. I’ll just say
this as an excursus. We don't believe in confidentiality at Mars Hill. Like I’ve
had people come to meet with me and say “I’m cheating’ on my spouse and I think
I’ve got AIDS” I’m like well I’m gonna tell them." They’re like “Well, I thought
we had confidentiality.” No, we have heaven and hell. We don’t have
confidentiality. We don’t. “Well I thought you were supposed to keep it secret.”
No I’m not gonna keep it secret. If you’re molesting your kid, if you’re
cheating on your spouse, if you’re ripping off your employer, I’m pulling the
fire alarm. That’s how we do it. We walk in the light as he is in the light. We
tell the truth. I had one guy “I think I got AIDS. Don’t tell my wife.” You know
what? I need to tell your wife. You’re gonna go home and sleep with her. You’re
gonna maybe give her AIDS then she’s gonna call me and say “I’ve got AIDS”. Then
I’m gonna go visit her in the hospital and preach her funeral and get up and say
“Well hey I kept a good secret for Jesus.”
Didn’t ya’ll wear a bike helmet as a kid? Of course that’s not how we do it. We tell the truth, and we encourage people to repent. And sometimes if they fail to or refuse to, they just get furious. It’s like water on a cat man—they’re just freaking out. That’s cool though (pause…laughter)--water on a cat.
This makes a certain sense from the perspective of Mars Hill. I mean it makes sense to me that if someone is harming someone else who is clearly under their power, like an adult harming a child or a developmentaly delayed person, then it is totally right for another adult who learns of that to ... go to the appopriate authorities and see that the harm stops. And Mars Hill, as far as I can tell, does definitely see women as being in this position with regards to men. Please correct me if I am misunderstanding.
But ... isn't this ... taking away the opportunity for the offender to face the challenge of being an adult, of realizing and facing up to and trying to make amends for their own wrongs? It feels much more like a parent dealing with two children here, protecting one from the other. God doesn't do that with us! He lets us hurt each other, if we must, and then he lets us realize the extent to which we have hurt each other, and experience reconciliation in ... his time, not the pastor's.
I remember Amy Carmichael writing about doing this even with children. Challenging them to do the right thing, and then allowing them to make their own choice, even if that meant another child was being hurt.
This Mars Hill method feels a lot more like the method used in the sect I grew up in. What I have seen looking back at my experience in that sect, and looking at the lives of those I know who are still part of that sect, is that it nearly completely shuts down forward progress for the members. I and they were/are treated as children, and thus progress toward adulthood is never made until one gets out of that system. This was enormously damaging to me as I've had to make up for years of very little growth in maturity.
what do you think?