Saturday, July 15, 2006

Pastor fills bars in outreach effort

Rob Bell, Michigan pastor (previously covered here) of the mega-Mars Hill Bible Church near Grand Rapids, is now doing meta-stand-up in bars around the country.

Bell founded the church in 1999, which now meets in a cavernous building (former shopping mall) and draws more than 11,000 to his weekend services.

Bordering on self-proclaimed "utter-foolishness," Bell admits his efforts "crank up the risk factor" and may "crash land."

Jim Hamilton, my friend and much-published collaborer (blog) in the kingdom, is quoted in the article, "If you want to be contextualized, that's fine, but you have to be contextualizing the Gospel," he said. "If you are not contextualizing the Gospel, you are just being conformed to the spirit of the age."

Contextualization in evangelism and outreach is like typologization in biblical interpretation. There must exist some objective boundaries and safeguards in place; otherwise, where ends the envelope?

See the coverage from Houston (here).


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