Well, the “Ask Anything” project is almost at the close of Round 1 for voting on the questions. Over 775 questions have been asked with over 70,000 votes tallied at this point. Many of you have been kind to vote for my question, which has continued to stay at the #1 spot for the past two weeks. During this time, I have listened to what others are saying, read the comments, and trying to chime in where I found it helpful. So with the “What’s Mark Thinking” blog in mind, I thought I’d a moment to write a little about “What’s Timmy Thinking” for fun, especially since I am now officially at my momma’s house blogging in my pajama pants. 🙂
1. I like Driscoll. I have gone to bat for him on more than one occasion, and love his passion for church planting and reaching the lost. I do, however, have limited knowledge of Driscoll (not read all his books, listened to many sermons, etc.).
2. I have come to realize that many people have never heard of the Regulative Principle, and the fact that my question being at the top of the list, at least will do a little to serve as in impetus to get more people thinking about what it means for our generation.
3. While there have been some who think that my question is ridiculous, heady, impractical, illegitimate, etc., the fact that is has remained number #1 with a spread of over 1,000 votes from #2 reveals that is has more traction with my generation than “hard core Calvinists” and a “bloggers fan base” as Driscoll claims. Indeed, in spite of Driscoll’s pejorative attempts to discourage people voting on it, the question of the Regulative Principle appears to have more resilience than even the attempts to manipulate the system.
4. I must say, though, I do find it a peculiar thing that when the rules have been made and a level playing field has been set, that Driscoll has single-handedly been trying to influence the outcome of the top questions by telling folks which questions he likes and dislikes. Such tactics makes one wonder if he doesn’t like the outcome of the game and therefore wants to change the rules midstream. I guess the RP was not one of those pre-approved questions.
5. As a result, I was tempted to request that my question be removed as I didn’t want Driscoll or anyone else to think this question is being propped up by ballot-stuffing or any other form of manipulating the voting process. However, as I thought about it, the question has more potential of doing good, and others have chimed in with some really encouraging comments.
6. The questions Driscoll are hoping to make a run to the top–differences in various religions, what happens when babies die, sexual questions, dating, and the Bible with its transmission, translations, and canon–can and have been answered by many already. While it would be nice if Driscoll answered these questions, his responses would be merely complimentary to the growing corpus of literature already on the respective subjects.
7. The question I posed is addressed in particular to Driscoll because he has been providentially placed within two camps: the missional and the Reformed. Within these two camps there is a tension that is historical and ecclesiological, and it is within these two camps where Driscoll has been raised to a place of prominence and leadership. How the Scripture regulates or governs our methodology as a missional church in the Reformed tradition has not been addressed to date, and wrestling with the authority and sufficiency of Scripture in our methods and practices is one will be good for a man who watches Ultimate Fighting Championships. A future generation of missional church planters in a day where the gap between the culture and church is growing larger by the day will be wrestling with the placement of Scripture, culture, tradition, etc. for a long time to come. It would be great to see Driscoll get in the ring.
8. Speaking of getting in the ring, I have been talking about this with some folks who know much more about the rich heritage of the Regulative Principle than me, and a few have agreed to write about it. So, Lord willing, between now and the close of the voting, one could expect to see some guest articles here on P&P.
9. Now that Round 1 is coming to a close, Round 2 will continue with the top 50 questions. During the month of November (and part of December), each day you will have the opportunity to vote ten times or whatever questions you consider most important. If you believe the Regulative Principle is of such importance, then please consider voting for it. The bottom line is not a vote for the RP but a reaffirmation that what we do as the church and how we do it.
So, now that I have told you what I am thinking, what are you thinking?