View Full Version : Rob Bell?
03-20-2011, 05:52 PM
I'd never heard of him, but I don't follow the Evangelical or Emerging/ent Ch Movement? He wrote a book called Love Wins, which questions the "believe in Jesus or go to he11" message. (I'm sure that's an over simplification, but you get the idea.) I was wondering if any of you had heard of him? I'm think about buying the book.
Here's the trailer of the book:
03-20-2011, 06:56 PM
I have seen some of his videos. They are very well done, IMO, and I found them thought-provoking. He seemed to put stuff out there, but let you draw your own conclusions, not the "my way is the only way" that I get from many of the other mega church/ evang. pastors (when I have see them, which is admittedly not much). I think there is some controversy around his latest stuff, but I haven't followed it.
03-20-2011, 09:53 PM
Well, I'm not overly familiar with the emergent church, although I would identify myself as evangelical. (For clarification, the emergent church/movement would generally fall under the larger umbrella of evangelicalism, as it's a more recent movement within the Christian church.) At any rate, I know a little bit about Rob Bell, but not a lot. From what I've gathered (seen a a few of his videos and read some interviews with him and some reviews of his books), he is a little bit "edgy" and likes to push traditional evangelicals out of their comfort zones,. He seems to really try and engage the culture, trying to make Christianity relevant to people who are unfamiliar with church, bible, etc., or who are dissatisfied with the church in some way. That may be an oversimplification, but that's my understanding.
IMO, Rob Bell definitely makes some good points and challenges both Christians and non-Christians to think in new ways about what they believe about God. And for that, I appreciate him. However, he is also a bit unorthodox (and some would say unbiblical) in some of his beliefs, which can be confusing to people who don't understand where he's coming from. Here is a link to a review of his book that might help explain what I mean. The review is long, but describes in detail both the good points and criticisms of the book. It's from the magazine Christianity Today, which is fairly conservative in its theology, but generally provides pretty thorough, balanced reviews. http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2011/april/lovewins.html
Are you looking for a book that talks about God and Christianity in a straight-forward, honest, and culturally relevant way? IMO, Rob Bell may not be the best place to start. I would actually recommend you check out The Prodigal God by Tim Keller. He is a pastor in NYC and a fabulous writer. Like Bell, he's also very clear and culturally relevant, but Keller is more orthodox in his beliefs and I think more clearly explains where his theology is coming from. Or read both and see what you think!
We've viewed/discussed a few of the videos from NOOMA series he did, and so far, I appreciate what he discusses. I wouldn't necessarily say it pushes me too, too far out of my comfort zone, but I don't identify with being Evangelical.
I haven't read the book yet, but it's one I'm considering. I'm also one who prefers to get a glimpse from lots of viewpoints, so take that FWIW.
03-21-2011, 02:11 AM
I don't know a ton about him but I've read his book Velvet Elvis and LOVED it. I'm a Christian and have been for most of my life--a very churchy type person if I had to label myself. And I REALLY appreciate his outlook on Christianity and what it really is (and isn't).
Like a pp said, he appeals to the unchurched and those who are skeptic about the church/God/Jesus. But for someone who is very "churched", I very much love hearing and reading about him. He does, however, have a lot of critics (Christian critics at that). Personally, I haven't felt like his theology is not biblical. In fact, I would say it's even more biblical to be loving and to love everyone.
I'm going to get the book you're referring to on Amazon now!
03-21-2011, 09:22 AM
We have a bunch of his books and videos. DH has heard him speak several times. Honestly, he is too intellectual for me! :)
That said, he is interesting and like a PP said, a bit edgy. He has long been regarded as more socially liberal than many evangelical pastors.
DH bought his new book and is reading it right now. I haven't read it yet.
ETA: DH's 87 year old grandma read Velvet Elvis and loved it! :)
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