August 09, 2014

Has Lifeway Finally Grown a Backbone?

It seems that, in light of the recent controversies (see here and here), Lifeway has pulled Mark Driscoll's books (read all about it here).

I am puzzled by this decision. Lifeway continues to sell books by other scandal-ridden ego-maniacal mega-church CEO types (like Stephen Furtick and James McDonald). Not only that, Lifeway has no compunctions about selling the outright heresy being peddled by prosperity preachers like Benny Hinn and T. D. Jakes.

Ironically, though Driscoll is almost certainly unfit for ministry (this would be the case if only a fraction of the charges against him are true), he's much more theologically orthodox than these other teachers. In fact, despite Driscoll's many sins and shortcomings, his books are, for the most part, quite good. I'd recommend Driscoll's writings over those of Lifeway darlings Rick Warren and Beth Moore in a heartbeat.

I've been waiting for Lifeway to start taking some responsibility for the trash that they peddle for profit, but, unfortunately, this isn't it. If I had to guess, I'd say that this decision is a purely pragmatic one motivated by a desire to avoid controversy. If they were really serious, they'd be starting with a bona fide heretic rather than a controversial (though theologically orthodox) figure like Driscoll. Faux-integrity, it seems, is less costly than the real thing.

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