I listened to Mark’s teachings since 2003, was an active part of his church and worked with him for 3 years. While his messages are often filled with bold insight, he does not live it out. He preaches the grace of God for sinners, yet he considers himself to be somehow different than those who are in his flock. He was a major part of shipwrecking a church of thousands and has yet to reconcile with some of the people he hurt the most.
To those who listen to his messages from afar, there’s little to no way of knowing this. To those of us who have been close to him, he is a sick man who refuses to be in a community with others or receive help. His words on the podcast are sharp and decisive, but in person he uses his words to dominate over some people, while manipulating others to follow him. There’s a lot of talk about Jesus in his preaching. But there’s more about himself when you meet with him in person. He’s neither fatherly nor brotherly. He is cold and impatient—driven by a desire to grow his influence over other people.
It’s possible to listen to his messages on this podcast and hear the gospel. But it’s difficult to imagine his view of the gospel if he weren’t a part of the equation. He often reflects on gospel lessons by telling stories about himself and/or his family. Sadly, these stories change over time and it’s impossible to tell which is true and which is fabrication. In all of them, he shows himself to be a believer that others should model their lives after. This is how it is much more about Mark Driscoll than it ever was about Jesus Christ.
I don’t recommend listening to this podcast because I know the hurt he has caused. In my opinion, he should not be trusted to teach or pastor in a church. It is far too difficult for his audience to chew the meat and spit out the fat. So my recommendation is to stay far away.