CNN and Rob Bell

rob bell

by John Ellis

I first became familiar with Rob Bell around 2007. During my first few years as a new Christian, I had heard several friends speak glowingly of books like Velvet Elvis and Blue Like Jazz; the tag “Emergent” was beginning to become more and more commonplace in friends’ vernacular. To keep up, I begin reading books written by pastors and authors within the Emergent Community, including both Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller and Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell. Both books intrigued me, yet worried me, too.

The way Rob Bell seemed to worship doubt and questions in Velvet Elvis flew in the face of the comforting truth found in the gospel of Jesus Christ. I mean, Jesus claimed to be the truth, and Rob Bell was acting like loving truth claims was problematic, arrogant, and unloving. Bell’s flirtations with relativism in Velvet Elvis was a warning flag that I couldn’t ignore. Whenever I shared my concerns with friends who liked the book, my concerns were dismissed and I was cautioned about becoming too strident and too in love with systematic theology.

Well, flash forward a decade, and my concerns have proven true. Sadly, many of the friends who defended Bell have abandoned the orthodox Christian faith, just as Rob Bell has. Needless to say, my heart grieves for the friends (and strangers) whom Rob Bell has led astray.

Wolves in sheep’s clothing need to be exposed, and CNN has provided me with the opportunity to do just that. In a recent article, a CNN writer gushed over Bell and lauded his brand of faith as true and good, especially compared to the stereotypical Christianity of the Bible Belt. Upon reading the article, I immediately emailed my editor at PJ Media and made a pitch for an article of my own. She accepted. Below is a link to that article.


2 thoughts on “CNN and Rob Bell

  1. When I became a Christian in 1994, I was drawn heavily to Rob Bell’s “Nouma” videos. I thought they were fascinating and engaging. Generally, I didn’t sense that he was tickling our ears, but that could be a result of me being a young and immature Christian at 36 years of age. I praise God that I was surrounded by great preachers who were true to the Word of God, and they would not stray from sound orthodox theology. [After all, right thinking (orthodoxy) leads to right living (orthopraxy), doesn’t it?] Rob Bell not only moved away from tickling to downright assault when he became a universalist and discounted the existence of hell in LOVE WINS. (Francis Chan couldn’t write his rebuttal fast enough in ERASING HELL!) Just yesterday, I was reading the latest ESPN magazine, which featured a fascinating article on Aaron Rodgers. (I heartily call it to your attention, since Rodgers details his Christian upbringing, how he has become good friends with Rob Bell, and his new beliefs on spirituality which are anything but orthodox. It’s no wonder Rodgers has drifted away from the Gospel, if he is a tight friend of Rob Bell. Of course, any of us is susceptible to man-centered theology if we’re not careful. I became convicted of that very truth this afternoon, as I walked next to my bride on a fitness club treadmill, reading CHRISTLESS CHRISTIANITY, by Michael Horton. Sorry I’m writing such long posts to your writing today, John! I guess I’m bingeing on John Ellis writing today! As always, your posts elicit strong responses from me, generally approving, you will be pleased to see, since I’m sure you get blasted with all kinds of vitriol from people who do not share your worldview!

    Liked by 1 person

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