The stew keeps cooking on controversial mega-church pastor, Rob Bell, and his latest book, Love Wins. Today, Greg Boyd, hardly a non-controversial figure himself among evangelicals with his open theistic views, went on record saying Bell is no universalist. In a post entitled, "Rob Bell is NOT a universalist (and I actually read "Love Wins), he writes>>>
"I strongly doubt Rob would describe himself as a “Universalist”... . hell (which, by the way, Rob does emphatically believe in)... . I would argue that Rob cannot hold to Universalism as a doctrine: he cannot be, in the classic sense of the word, a Universalist" (emphasis original)
On the other hand, the New York Times also added its views recording that Justin Taylor received a quarter mil page views in a mere 48 hours (to give you a ruler, that's more than most Baptist blogs receive combined over an entire year!).
One highly disappointing conclusion was made by Boyce College dean, Denny Burk. He sums up the "flap" over Rob Bell with a remark which predictably frames the entire debate over Justin Taylor's "outing" post on Rob Bell. Burk writes:
It appears that Justin Taylor’s initial take on the book may be vindicated when it is released on March 15. I will have more to say about it then.
Excuse me? Taylor's initial view on Bell's book vindicated? And who has actually been questioning Justin Taylor's view on Rob Bell's book?* Not only does such a conclusion fundamentally miss what the overwhelming majority of those who've raised a question had in mind, it also gives the impression that we were arguing for Rob Bell's position contra Taylor.
Whatever Bell believes in his new book will not shock me. I know enough about Bell to have made my mind up a long time ago. I've said such clearly and unambigously. The issue I and many others raised had one singular purpose:
no one--including The Gospel Coalition--honors scholarship, Christian courtesy, justice, or proper literary etiquette in judging a man a heretic or false teacher by citing a promotional video and marketing blurb apart from the content of the book itself
Sometimes the best test for discovering what someone really believes is right or wrong is observing how he or she reacts when another person treats him or her in a particular way. These guys can blow smoke all they want about the legitimacy of quoting publisher's words on the cover of the book or watching a marketing video and from that concluding someone is a heretic or false teacher. The time will come, however, when someone somewhere pulls the same stunt on them. Then... listen for a different tune they play on their harp.
With that, I am...
*albeit Boyd does so he's actually read the book. My point pertains to the initial "flap" (Burk's term) when Taylor posted his piece