You adulterers! Don't you realize that friendship with the world makes you an enemy of God? I say it again: If you want to be a friend of the world, you make yourself an enemy of God. -- James 4: 4 (NLT)
I do not know Mark Driscoll, Pastor of Mars Hill Church in Seattle. Maybe he is spot on in his theology and maybe this was just a mistake. But on the issue of the Easter Bunny, he is simply incorrect. Driscoll did an op-ed piece in the faith section of the Washington Post where in an effort to appear more moderate to the masses, he discards the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This is of course one of the problems with mega-church pastors; just look no further than Joel Osteen. In an effort to please everyone, you sacrifice your beliefs. Integrity to the Gospel dies one small compromise at a time.
Driscoll's article can be found at this link:
I provide it for context and so you can see what I am responding directly to. I take no pleasure in this but I believe in the Word of God and know that I will stand before Christ one day to explain myself. I think we have this mentality in the modern church to "look the other way" at apostasy under the guise of fake unity. We constantly see the "judge not lest not ye be judged" verses abused as an excuse to allow heresy to poison the church. Using his own words only, here should be the response of the Bible believing Christian. Driscoll's words will be italicized so you can differentiate. Scripture will be in bold.
Easter is the biggest Sunday of the year for Christians--and rightfully so. It's an occasion for us to celebrate the Resurrection, the victory of Jesus Christ over Satan, sin, and death. It's also when a few of the more "interesting" folks in the church, the kind who like to write end-times charts on ammo boxes in crayon, come out of the woods to rail against the day as a pagan holiday.
I do not have any ammo boxes Pastor Driscoll. I also do not live in the woods. To start your editorial with such a divisive and inflammatory piece of rhetoric indicates that you obviously feel your overall position must be rather weak. Why not use Scripture to defend your position?
Some Christians, rather than celebrate the fact that a day that was once devoted to the celebration of a pagan god and is now devoted to Jesus, wish to be the conscience police and go around telling everyone how they should stop having fun and celebrating because of the day's origins.
A couple of problems here. First of all, if the day was devoted to Jesus then we wouldn't be dealing with the topic of the Easter Bunny, which actually has its origins not in the Goddess Eostre but actually in the Biblical character Nimrod, who later was deified to become Baal and Molech. You may want to read some of the Old Testament to see how God felt about those false gods. The larger problem with this snippet is that no one is suggesting that people cannot "have fun." The implication seems to be that you cannot have fun on Resurrection Sunday without having the Easter Bunny. I would disagree.
If someone has a conscience issue with celebrating the holiday, they should abstain, but to rail against kids eating candy and having fun sounds more like the religious types who murdered Jesus than the kids who hung out with him.
Seriously? So now someone who stands up for not compromising the Gospel of Jesus Christ is a Pharisee? Perhaps Pastor Driscoll hasn't seen these verses:
Don't team up with those who are unbelievers. How can righteousness be a partner with wickedness? How can light live with darkness? What harmony can there be between Christ and the devil? How can a believer be a partner with an unbeliever? And what union can there be between God's temple and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God said: "I will live in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they will be my people. Therefore, come out from among unbelievers, and separate yourselves from them, says the Lord . Don't touch their filthy things, and I will welcome you. And I will be your Father, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty." -- 2Corinthians 6: 14-18 (NLT)
Only in a mega church pastor's mind can someone who wants to protect the sanctity of the Gospel be linked to someone who murdered Christ. Also, no one is railing against children eating chocolate. You want to give your child chocolate -- knock yourself out. This is a sad attempt here to try and paint those that might simply disagree with him as being "anti-children."
Just like Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny is a hallmark of American culture. So, unless you live in a commune, you can't pretend it doesn't exist and that it's not a significant part of our cultural observance of the holiday.
Once again, Pastor Driscoll setting up strawman arguments. No one is suggesting they do not exist as part of Americana. What we are suggesting is that the church should not play the harlot with them. That the church should stand for something. Look, Halloween is also a significant part of Americana, is Pastor Driscoll pro-Halloween? Should the church encourage Christians to celebrate a holiday based upon evil? According to this cultural argument Driscoll makes the answer would be -- "yes as long as you tell your kids that you really believe in Jesus Christ!"
As with many things, we redeem the idea of the Easter Bunny. We tell our kids that the Easter Bunny is a make-believe character from a non-Christian holiday.