Friday, September 28, 2007

Letters to a Young Evangelical

Let me start by saying that Mr. Campolo (sorry, Rev. Dr. Campolo) lost all credibility with me halfway through the book when he discussed the fact that he and his wife belong to separate churches. She belongs to a church that affirms homosexuality, while he belongs to a nearby church that does not affirm homosexuality. It just goes to show that anyone can write a book and get it published, it just takes a sucker like me to read it. (At least I didn't pay for it, thank you public library.)

I'm sorry, but if you can't even manage to go to the same church as your wife, then you have no business teaching me anything about anything, let alone trying to give an overview of the current cultural, political, theological, and ecclesiastical landscape.

It's amazing to me that some of these authors (Leonard Sweet comes to mind) are encouraged to write at all, let alone paid for it.

The topics that Campolo discusses in this book are great topics that I am indeed interested in: fundamentalism, Pentecostalism, women's roles, homosexuality, abortion, conservative politics, southern baptists, Biblical inerrancy, etc. These are great topics, hot-buttons even; but their relevance is ruined by this man's stupidity. Here is a classic case of a man who needs to stop trying to inform others, and get a handle on his own life first.

Here's the deal:

I'll tell you when I read a book that is a really great book, but has some conclusions that I disagree with - "Velvet Elvis" by Rob Bell.

Likewise, I'll tell you when I read a book that is just a complete waste of time whether I agree with its premise or not - "Sex/God" by Rob Bell, just about anything by Leonard Sweet, as well as this book, by the Rev. Dr. Campolo.

Here's an excerpt from the book:

My wife would ask, "Don't you think it's hypocritical for you to accept into the church, and even ordain to the ministry, persons who have been divorced and remarried, but to turn around and forbid gay marriage? How can you accept marriages that Jesus specifically condemns, and then turn around and oppose marriages Jesus never even mentions?" My only response is that the prohibitions against homosexual eroticism were so prevalent in His time that Jesus saw no need to talk about the obvious. But my wife doesn't buy that argument.


Chris said...

It's sad, because at one time Tony Compolo was highly respected. first say Tony Compolo on video in my missions class at CCFL. He message was radical and it really brought conviction to a lot of people. Myself included. During that time, his ministry to homosexuals was Biblical... he did it for the point of reaching a people group that Southern Baptist wouldn't touch with a 10 ft. pole.

Homosexuals need to be ministered to, but not given the comfort that they are accepted and okay in the eyes of God. I remember reading a book by him years ago and I thought that he was going a little too far. I remember bringing that book to the CCFL missions pastor and he blew it off completely (now I know why... he bought into it).

Dan said...

Yeah it is a sad view point but not one Tony seems to hold, just his wife. I don't want to sound like I am making excuses but stuff may have changed since the book was first published.
No doubt God has done some amazing stuff through Tony, however I do think sexual immorality is a heading for homosexuality (as well as other things) Jesus did talk about it, I'm sure it would have been an issue with the gentiles.

revolution said...

might you want to expound upon "No doubt God has done some amazing stuff through Tony"?

I'm not being condescending, but rather ignorant of Campolo's deeds.

I only read the book because the chapter headings stood out. I've heard the name, but know noting of him really.

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