The Evangelical Universalist Forum

The Wartburg Watch

Here is a site that might be interesting for some here:

The Wartburg Watch

It is basically a blog, primarily by three ladies, mostly concerned with the topic of spritual / church abuse.

Because I live in the Seattle area and am keenly aware of some of the goings on at Mars Hill I find many of the posts on this site very interesting and I might say accurate as well from stuff I’ve observed and experienced first hand.

I think they are doing a good job of linking the neo-calvinist (reformed) movement to its fruit or as it’s been refered to previously here on this forum the dark underbelly of Reformed theology

This is a particularly interesting post: “The Nones: Are the Faithful Fleeing the Church?”

Anyway I don’t know where they stand with respect to EU but I applaud their efforts to call attention to some of the harmful stuff being produced by “The New Calvinism”.

Thanks Davidbo for sharing that link. I will be interested in checking out TWW as I have a history with MH and other A29 churches. We have a number of friends that began MH (as in Mark and Grace’s living room) so we have witnessed the progression of the saga over the years. As sad as the revelation of all this is it may be the thing that finally opens people up to the “rest of the Story”!

We have begun to address on a new site Driscoll and Keller, Piper, Chan, Gall, McKnight etc., with how they are inadvertently supporting the UR paradigm.


Or maybe as a beginning to recognize that there is something very wrong with current reformed message.

This whole “New Calvinism”, “Reformed Theology Resurgence” being pushed by Driscoll, Mahaney, Mohler, Piper, etc. is really starting to produce some highly visible and very harmful and negative fruit.

Because of the Mars Hill Acts 29 network, the SBC under the influence of Mohler, and Mahaney’s Sovereign Grace Ministries, the underlying reformed theology that eventually bears its negative fruit is being effectively spread through much of evangelical Christianity.

It makes me sad. I do hope as you Phillip that as this reformed stuff spreads the soon to follow implosions or explosions (as is occurring at Mars Hill now) will lead people into the direction of the much greater hope. I believe many on this forum have arrived here through this very path.

I don’t have much time to spend on writing it out but I have had this dream in my head of what a church could be like where the greater hope of EU is foundational. It would be much like this forum I think, where people can openly explain their theological beliefs, world views, be challenged by, and challenge other’s views in a respectable loving caring way.

The environment on this forum is antithetical in a reformed church in my opinion where top down strict hierarchical control is necessary to keep the outpouring of cognitive dissonance to a minimum. Here is a sad example and this woman’s story is definitely worth reading – God bless her. My Story By Jonna Petry (middle of the page). Jonna’s story is not uncommon. She and her family were looking for community, equality, and openness and found the exact opposite. I fear this will be the legacy and demise of the reformed resurgence.

Many on this forum have expressed this and my own personal experience of suddenly having my eyes open to EU produced an instant radical change in my view of mankind. I saw every man, woman, child, as an equal expression of God’s love and character. I saw hope for every single person. I saw equality of value. I saw every man / woman is my brother or sister, all related, and all sharing the same relationship with a heavenly father that will work to the benefit of his entire family as a whole and for each individual perfectly.

Through my now rose colored glasses I envision a local church where EU is a key foundational peice of community and relationship. Where the harrowing tales of spiritual abuse and usury, authority run amok, elitism, us vs them, is seen for the evil that it is.

Maybe I have it wrong and all these same sorts of issues would exist in an EU based community but I don’t see it on this forum and I don’t think they would.

I can dream the dream.

Yes you can dream the dream because God will give you “above and beyond what we could ever ask or imagine”. For the ECTer, they are always trying to suppress their imaginations of hope! How entirely sad…

I think it is being made self-evident by the progressive downward spiral of Reformed organizations: SGM, A29 etc., I believe we need to react very graciously because there are myriads of vulnerable people involved who do not need to get caught in the crossfire. We need to lovingly respond to the issues so that we build a bridge of communication between UR and those who are still too afraid to consider it. I heard a testimony by a UR believer who said that he did not feel that UR was an obvious doctrine at first and that love was the ONLY key to him feeling safe and finally taking a closer look.

I also think that the recent focus on the missional strategy of “finding the gospel as already present in a culture” is applicable here. Instead of pointing out where they are dead wrong show them where they are right-on and intuitively and inadvertently validating UR over and over in their books, teaching and actions (similar as in the case of Acts 17 where Paul said, “your own prophets have said” and revealed the identity of the “unknown god” to the Athenians at Mars Hill).

There is a church in Denver, “The Sanctuary Downtown” that appears to be functioning in this manner. Peter Hiett was “defrocked” by his Reformed denomination a few years ago and now pastors this UR church. He has a sermon on unity that is the best I have heard on the subject, “That the World May Know”. Also check out his book on the website called “Epiphany: the Creator that Doesn’t Fail”. He sounds like a traditional pastor with some of the “preacher-speak” but bear with him if that’s not your style and hear what he has to say, I think you will be encouraged!

YES! This is exactly my experience…hope for every person! Coming from a Calvinist position this was just overwhelming to begin to let myself feel God’s love for the world.