Daniel at Better Than Sacrifice has put together a string of Tweets from James WhiteELEPHANT ROOM 2: JAMES WHITE ON T.D. JAKES AND ELEPHANTS IN THE ROOM
Macdonald already says he has responded:
Bishop Jakes, 2nd Decisions and Coming Home
"But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.” John 3:21
I was initially planning to publish the transcript of session #4 between Mark Driscoll and Bishop Jakes, where Bishop Jakes confirmed his Trinitarian belief and affirmed “God in three persons, eternally existing.” He disavowed modalism, while expressing his great love and appreciation for his spiritual heritage including Baptist, Methodist, and Oneness. I wanted to publish the conversation word-for-word to keep people from distorting it, but on our staff we talk about the importance of the ‘second decision.’ The second decision is where you admit that the first decision was a bad one. I have decided not to publish the transcripts of any conversations from Elephant Room.Imagine that. How convenient.
Someone already did though, remember?
TOM CHANTRY ON . . .The Elephant Room II, Session 4 Transcript (better grab it before Macdonald threatens Chantry with a lawsuit. The video at the link has been removed. If anyone has it I hope someone will reupload. These celebrity pastors are so proud of what they are doing but refuse to let the record be known so they threaten anyone with any video or audio proof with copyright violation.)
This was the section that was clearest, and it's still very questionable:
Driscoll: We also would agree that in the nature of God there is mystery, and it’s like a dimmer switch: how much certainty, how much mystery. But within that, Bishop Jakes, for you the issue between Trinitarianism and Modalism at its essence is is one God manifesting Himself successively in three ways? Or one God three persons simultaneously existing eternally - so, your best is your understanding now? And I understand, there is some mystery - for sure. Would you say its One God manifesting Himself in three ways, or One God in three persons?Chantry commented on his own blog post:
Jakes: I believe that neither one of them totally did it for me, but I think the latter one is where I stand today.
Driscoll: One God Three Persons?
Jakes: One God – Three Persons. One God – Three Persons, and here is why...I am there... I am not crazy about the word persons this is...most people who follow me know that that is really. My doctrinal statement is no different from yours except the word...
Jakes: Manifest instead of persons. Which you describe as modalist, and I describe as Pauline. When I read...let me show you what I’m saying...when I read I Timothy 3:16 - I didn’t create this modalist, and without controversy which I think we have...we have bickered about something which Paul describes as a mystery, and I don’t think we should do that. “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness. So God was manifest in the flesh.” Now Paul is not a modalist, but he does not think it is robbery to the divinity of God to think God was manifest in the flesh. And I think maybe it’s semantics, because [garbled], but Paul says this before this fight was started. But He also goes on “manifested in the flesh, justified in the spirit, seen by angels, preached up to the gentiles, believed on in the world, and received up into glory.” Now, when we start talking about that sort of thing, I think that it is important that we realize that there are distinctives between the Father and the working of the Son. The Father didn’t bleed, the Father didn’t die, only in the person of Jesus Christ... coming back for us in the person of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ has been with us, but only indwells us through the person of the Holy Spirit; we are baptized into the body of Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit. I don’t think any of that is objectionable to any of the three of us-
MacDonald: Not at all.
The idea that Jakes repudiated Modalism in this exchange is laughable, no matter how much Driscoll and MacDonald might want to will it to have happened. Read my "Quick-Hit" post if you have the time, or at least recognize that he only affirmed one God in three Persons after saying he dislikes the orthodox wording and prefers the Modalist wording. It came in the context of a sustained attack against the very idea of doctrinal clarity and the repeated insistence that there is no significant difference separating the Modalist from the Trinitarian. Where on earth do you get the idea that he "separated from the modalist view" - do you simply believe it because MacDonald said that he did?Chantry then goes on to make a 'quick hit' post on ER2 after having posted the transcript (which I linked to above).
Moreover, there is a whole other heresy which Driscoll and MacDonald chose to ignore, although it is hard to imagine how they could have addressed the Prosperity Gospel during Furtick's second appearance in the ER.
Quick Hit Thoughts on ER2
In particular I thought people who are all worried about the tone of 'anger' from his critics ought to pay attention to #3 there:
3. James MacDonald is angry. OK, you knew that. You saw the email from his ministry and read about Chris Rosebrough's removal from the premises of the conference. But look at how the anger is directed in this transcript. He is angry with anyone who questions Jakes, because this non-affirmation of Trinitarianism is sufficient. If you don't see that, you're irrational. MacDonald has a new friend, and he's excited to have him. Don't go stepping on his toes.To anyone who can't see the real anger of these so-called 'loving' and 'open minded' pastors, I don't know how to explain it to you. The only thing I can come up with is that I am thankful you must never have had to deal with this level of deception personally. It would be nice if there were not those kinds of people in the church seeking power and status, but they are. In fact giving some very nice people power and status often subjects a man to temptation to corruption. Power corrupts.
Yes, many of us critics are angry over the trampling of truth in the streets and I will admit so. It is very grievous to me to see my Savior and his word so flippantly treated. James Macdonald is dead wrong when (here) he places 'relationship' over 'truth' because without truth you have no love. Without love you have no relationship of love.
I make no apology for prioritizing relationship in these conversations.A conference isn't about having 'relationships' built. You guys are free to do that behind the scenes, with great discernment and care. I wouldn't go about proclaiming that you are best friends with notorious heretics either. If you need to press someone at a conference to get to the truth YOU DO IT. A conference, a speaking engagement, is about proclaiming truth. Your nice warm relationship is not worth the deception that is going out to all those other people you are accountable for! Don't you love them too?
Who wants to pay to watch a 'conversation'? Wouldn't it be less trouble, and cheaper to just bring a video camera into your Living Room, meet with these guys and talk, and then stream it out to everyone or make a DVD? It'd be like a new Pastor Reality show (oh oh don't give them ideas).
What we have going on here is just phileo love, sappy sentimentality, 'you stroke my back, I'll stroke yours' and it is inherently narcissistic. "I don't want to push that guy toward the truth, because our relationship can't take it yet." So? If you don't have the relationship, what will you lose? James Macdonald, if the relationship can't handle it, then maybe you should take more time building and reinforcing that relationship before you force that person's error on the church.
And this paragraph is so revealing:
It’s like when my future son-in-law came to ask for my daughter’s hand. I pressed him to a degree, but I chose to establish friendship with a view to future conversations as well. Why would I risk our future by front loading everything that was on my heart?Maybe BECAUSE YOU LOVE HER? Why would you risk HER FUTURE?
Seriously, what kind of a dad is this?
"Better is open rebuke Than love that is concealed. Faithful are the wounds of a friend, But deceitful are the kisses of an enemy." Pr 27:5-6
With these guys, what you see is not what you get. Real anger, honestly admitted and expressed, is far preferable to smiling deceptive fake love and tolerance, which is what these guys do. They fake 'tolerance' for those who challenge them in ways they want to be challenged. They shamelessly ROUT, threaten, abuse, manipulate, ostracize and slander anyone who asks questions that make them uncomfortable and causes them to examine their self centered mindset in light of what God's word says.
"Let us flee, lest the building fall down; for Cerinthus, the enemy of the truth, is inside!" (John the Apostle as told to Irenaus and retold to Polycarp)
But today, they will not endure SOUND doctrine.