San Francisco, California — Rob Bell, author of the best-selling and controversial book Love Wins, which challenges the Christian teaching of Hell, came out in support of homosexual marriage on Sunday and called “narrow” Christians to repentance.
According to reports, Bell was speaking at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco and delivered a message based on his new book What We Talk About When We Talk About God.
During the question and answer period, Bell was asked about his beliefs regarding same-sex “marriage.”
“I am for marriage. I am for fidelity. I am for love, whether it’s a man and woman, a woman and a woman, a man and a man,” he said. “I think the ship has sailed and I think the church needs — I think this is the world we are living in and we need to affirm people wherever they are.”
Bell opined that many evangelicals can no longer be classified as conservatives because their beliefs have changed with the times.
“I think we are witnessing the death of a particular subculture that doesn’t work,” he asserted. “I think there is a very narrow, politically intertwined, culturally ghettoized, evangelical subculture that was told ‘we’re gonna change the thing’ and they haven’t. And they actually have turned away lots of people.”
“And I think that when you’re in a part of a subculture that is dying, you make a lot more noise because it’s very painful. You sort of die or you adapt,” Bell continued. “And if you adapt, it means you have to come face to face with some of the ways we’ve talked about God, which don’t actually shape people into more loving, compassionate people. And we have supported policies and ways of viewing the world that are actually destructive. And we’ve done it in the name of God and we need to repent.”
Leader Jane Shaw asked Bell during the discussion whether Christians can know truth for certain.
“I would say that the powerful, revolutionary thing about Jesus’ message is that he says, ‘What do you do with the people that aren’t like you? What do you do with the other? What do you do with the person that’s hardest to love?'” he replied. “That’s the measure of a good religion, is you can love the people who are just like you; that’s kind of easy. So what Jesus does is takes the question and talks about fruit. He’s interested in what you actually produce. And that’s a different discussion. How do we love the people in the world that are least like us?”
As previously reported, Bell returned to Mars Hill Bible Church in Grandville, Michigan last week, the church that he founded over a decade ago, to speak and to introduce his new television broadcast The Rob Bell Show. He also conducted a signing for his new book, in which he asserts: “I believe God is for every single one of us, regardless of our beliefs or perspectives or failures or mistakes.”
“We were terrified to seek anything [religious] because we thought for sure we’re going to Hell,” stated one couple that came for the signing. “We thought we already knew the end, so why keep looking?”
However, some believe that Bell is leading many down a dark and destructive path.
“Plain and simple, Rob Bell’s teachings are not true to the words of Scripture,” Eric Ludy, pastor of Church at Ellerslie and president of Ellerslie Mission Society in Windsor, Colorado told Christian News Network. “They are a sly attempt at blending the philosophies of our post-modern age with the vernacular of pop-Christianity. The end product is highly dangerous to the human soul because it is the forging of a golden calf god — a God of our culture’s making — and certainly not the God of the Bible.”
Ludy stated that contrary to Bell’s assertions that Christians must either “die or adapt” to homosexuality and other societal agendas, no Christian should bow to the whims of popular culture. He notes that God is not a man that He should repent, and neither should those who follow His word.
“The God of the Bible doesn’t change. His opinions don’t change. There is no shadow of turning in Him nor in His Scripture,” he said. “We cannot pander after the approval of the culture; we have to stand on the Scriptures just as they were written.”
“Two thousand years ago, Jesus Christ was politically incorrect and was subsequently nailed to a cross for His out-of-touch views,” Ludy concluded. “And now, two thousand years later, the same cross awaits those of us that choose to heed His Word and preach it boldly.”