After reading Love Wins, my question was, what?
The more I read, the more I was confused. Confused about what Rob Bell really believes. While he (Bell) continue posing questions, the more questions I had for him.
Are you an existentialist? A universalist? amillennailist? So you believe in hell, but is hell just on earth? Is the gate really that wide that all will come in? And the questions could go on and on and on.
I don’t want to pass judgement. I don’t. Who are we to pass judgements on someone’s eternal destiny? (A truth that can be found in this book.)
But I cannot forget the words from a sermon John MacArthur spoke several years ago on wisdom and discernment, “False teachers are like broken clocks; they are right twice a day which gives them credibility.”
Rob Bell is right,
“Our eschatology shapes our ethics.
Eschatology is about last things.
Ethics are about how you live.”
Paul encountered this. Philippians 3:13-14.
“Faith without works is dead.” James 2:20.
This is true.
Saying the words of a “Salvation Prayer,” if it means nothing, does not save you.
This is also true.
Rob Bell does write some true things. He has some valid points. But for every two things said that are true, twenty-two are wrong when brought under the microscope of Scripture.
Evangelicals, for the most part, would say they hold to these three presuppositions:
- Jesus is God.
- Mankind can know and believe in God.
- Scripture is the Word of God.
I wonder what Rob Bell thinks about #3.
Although he never straight forward declared it, I would be shocked if he believed in the complete authority, inspiration, infallibility of Scripture. He remarks at how clever some of Bible’s writers are. Bell writes, “John remembers Jesus saying, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life...’” If it’s just John remembering that leaves room for human error. 2 Timothy 3:16. 2 Peter 1:20-21.
Laying that aside, I do not believe that he has accurate hermeneutic (interpretation of Scripture). I believe you have to look at the Bible literally, as whole, looking historically at the cultural context it was written. Things were taken in and out of context left and right. And if Bell looked at the Bible as whole he would see God’s holiness and justice.
I wonder what Bell thinks of Romans 1-3 and 1 & 2 Kings-- a lot of God’s wrath shows up there.
Again, I came away confused, with a lot of questions about what Rob Bell believes.
But I didn’t come away questioning what I believe. In fact, as it says in Job, “I know that I know that my Redeemer lives.”
I know that the Bible is truth. It is the word of God. John 17:17.
As the Bible says, God is definitely love. And if that is all, love wins.
My God is bigger than just love.
He is immutable, immanent, transcendent, sovereign, omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent, holy, just, righteous, true, full of love, mercy, gentleness, and grace.
But if this is true, love (and love only) doesn’t win. Scripture (the Truth of the Word of God) wins.
[This isn't an exhaustive, or thorough review, just some first thoughts.]