Slice’s latest missive is a hysterical, huffy piece about Rob Bell preaching in front of an unmade bed. Here’s the bit to focus on:

Rob Bell preached on the same subject with an unmade bed behind him on the “stage”. How long until the bed will be occupied? I predict it won’t be long until this kind of sensuality goes even father. To keep a buzz going, you simply have to continue to provide ever more titillating offerings. After all, if God gave us sexuality, what would be wrong with celebrating it in a “Christian” setting? Or so they will claim. You were warned.

This is a continuing theme and, I guess argument from from the watchdoggies, a prediction of apocalyptic theological terror sweeping through the whole of Christendom. I’m sort of curious how accurate these guys actually are. Any chance our lovely commenters would like to scour the watchdoggies’ site to catalog these predictions?

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24 Comments(+Add)

1   chris
August 29th, 2007 at 8:35 pm

Would it have been better if it was two unmade beds parallel to each other ala Ricky and Lucy?

2   Julie
August 29th, 2007 at 8:47 pm

Hospital corners would have saved the illustration.

Neat, tightly tucked, hospital corners.

3   Rick Frueh
August 29th, 2007 at 9:10 pm

It is this type of unbiblical presentations and statements that mock God and misrepresent the gospel. I recall Rev. Haggard saying the same thing right before he was exposed.

It is unseemly and repugnant and untrue. God wants believers to have better sex? Throw out the Bible, you can say anything and claim God’s mind. It grievs my heart and I’m sure the Spirit of God if He was even present. What was the invitation? Repent if you are not having incredible…well, you know.

Very sad.

4   Chris L
August 29th, 2007 at 9:25 pm

Just a slight tangent – I’ve been listening to Mars Hill podcasts for over two years now, and I’m not familiar at all with Rob Bell and an empty bed on stage. Does anyone have this particular reference, or is this an assumption based on his book “Sex God”, which has no prurient content (nor does it discuss God helping your sex life).

5   Julie
August 29th, 2007 at 9:36 pm

Rob Bell’s Sex God was one of the most useful books I’ve read recently, and in no way made me blush. I blush easily. I rather wish they’d selected a different title, though, since I think a lot of people simply can’t get past that.

Unfortunately, I think people are just going to associate Bell with some kind of perpetual sex talk guy no matter what he does or does not preach.

6   Julie
August 29th, 2007 at 9:38 pm

Incidentally, if you read the comments on the Slice post in question and how some of the people are making rather wide leaps in proving whatever point they are proving…I think it would support the idea that people think of Rob Bell as some sort of Christian sex fiend or whatever.

Of course, I haven’t heard the sermon in question, just as many of these people haven’t read the full book. So…here we all are. Arguing about dust-jacket summations.

7   Rick Frueh
August 29th, 2007 at 9:57 pm

I don’t know about Bell on this subject, but that preacher was misrepresenting the Lord. You can speak I guess seriously and with wisdom about that subject, but to make that statement is irresponsible and a lie. It sets the stage for sensationalism rather than edification.

I don’t have to hear the whole sermon, that statement summs it up for me. And we sex drowned Americans treat it with a little surprise instead of the outrage it deserves because American Christians have to have the best of everything. The Sudanese Christians would really enjoy this message.

Does God want His children to have the best sex? Is He comparing the expertise between the world and the church? And does the preacher get into technique so people can practice at home in order to be in God’s obvious will?

Abject stupidity, and can someone tell me is the preacher considered seeker or emergent or what? There are lines and he crossed it. I do believe the auditorium will be filled, right? I should stop because as you can see I have little patience for these carnal presentations.

And of course poor Solomon and his song will be used here in the same way some use Jesus’ cleansing of the Temple to justify their teachings.

Besides fidelity here is the whole New Testament teaching:

Marriage is honrable in all, and the bed undefiled.

The end.

8   Joe Martino
August 30th, 2007 at 7:04 am

So I asked a friend of mine who has been here since day one and he says that Rob has never had a bed on stage. I can say from personal experience that our church doesn’t use “prop’s” like that all that much. I think she has confused Rob with Ed Young.

9   Joe Martino
August 30th, 2007 at 9:14 am

All right, I posted a comment over at Slice asking for clarification. Here’s what I said,

Hi Ingrid,
I attend Mars Hill in Grand Rapids and have friends who have been there since day one. None of them can remember Rob ever preaching with a bed on the stage. Do you have any proof for this statement? Did you maybe get Rob and Ed Young Jr. mixed up? I know Ed did that because I saw it with my own eyes. I was just hoping you could clarify this for me. I realize you and I are coming at this from vastly different P.O.V. but I would really like some proof for this statement.
Thank you,

So do you think my comment will actually get posted? Do you think she’ll attempt to back her statement up?

10   Rick Frueh
August 30th, 2007 at 9:24 am

I will allow her to copy and paste this statement.

“Brother Joe, after reviewing my statement I believe you are correct. I have many substantive disagreements with Rob Bell but I would not want to publish inaccuracies about him, just as I would not want that treatment about myself. Thank you for bringing it to my attention.”

11   Rick Frueh
August 30th, 2007 at 9:26 am

By the way, Joe, if it surfaces in the future you were wrong I give you permission to use the same statement, I know you wouldn’t have a problem with it.

12   Joe Martino
August 30th, 2007 at 9:29 am

LOL, Rick. I would just say

I was wrong. I’ve said a couple of million times in my life so far, with a couple of million to go! :)

13   Rick Frueh
August 30th, 2007 at 9:35 am

I’ve been married for 29 years, I walk in wrong!

14   Rick Frueh
August 30th, 2007 at 10:00 am

Tick-tock, tick-tock, tick-tock…

15   Sandman    
August 30th, 2007 at 10:26 am

She revised her post:

Here is Pastor Linn Winters of Cornerstone Church in Chandler, Arizona. Ed Young* preached on the same subject with an unmade bed behind him on the “stage”. How long until the bed will be occupied? I predict it won’t be long until this kind of sensuality goes even father. To keep a buzz going, you simply have to continue to provide ever more titillating offerings. After all, if God gave us sexuality, what would be wrong with celebrating it in a “Christian” setting? Or so they will claim. You were warned.

*I mistakenly said Rob Bell initially. Thanks to those who corrected me. My apologies for the error.

16   Sandman    
August 30th, 2007 at 10:27 am

It happens when you have Rob on the brain, Ingrid.

17   keith
August 30th, 2007 at 10:30 am

Ingrid has updated the post to address her mistake.

Here’s the picture of Ed Young Jr, the bed, and his SMOKIN’ HOT wife…I bet he’d say that about her. If he didn’t, SermonPastor might.

18   Houston John    
August 30th, 2007 at 12:36 pm

His wife is pretty but Ed’s had one to many face lifts if you ask me. Just say’n. Oh wait. That is an ad homen attack. Sorry.

19   Houston John    
August 30th, 2007 at 12:37 pm

P.S. Got to side with Henry on this one.

20   Joe Martino
August 30th, 2007 at 4:25 pm

She changed and sent me a very nice and cordial email explaining that she had made the change and thanked me for pointing it out to her. I don’t know if my comment made it up but she was nice. Good for her.

21   another nathan dude
August 30th, 2007 at 4:45 pm

I see Rick’s point. That has to do with the substance of the preaching. That’s a legitimate arena of discussion…

Ingrid’s just shrieking about the methodology again…

“They had a bed on the stage, they had a motorcycle on the platform, the worship leader wore jeans, the 8 year was flouncing in her bikini, the babies were conceived in a petri dish, the…etc. etc. etc. blah, blah, blah, blah, blaaaaaaah.”

It’s the surface, the persona, the appearance, the image…

one word:

22   Sandman    
August 30th, 2007 at 7:47 pm

I don’t so much have a problem with sex being a topic of discussion. The woman at the well had her life laid bare before her when she encountered Jesus. Paul called out the Corinthians on the issue sexual immorality.

As it is, too many people (some of whom are Christians) think Christians are Victorian about sex:
Procreation only
Bedroom only
Lights off
Bare only enough skin to accomplish the chore
Absolutely no noises or sounds to be emitted
Women aren’t supposed to enjoy it, so five minutes should be more than adequate; you get the idea

I’m exaggerating to make a point. Feel free to edit that if it offends.

How can something that feels so right be wrong?
The problem I have with people making their sex lives part of the sermon is that I’m single and I really don’t need to hear how much X and Y are enjoying something I choose not to have. From a mechanical standpoint, sex feels great even when it’s being abused, so care needs to be taken while edifying marriages not to create an unnecessary temptation for the singles and dating couples.

23   Houston John    
August 31st, 2007 at 10:28 am


“How can something that feels so right be wrong?”

????!!! Did you mean that in a positive way ????!!!!

BTW “light off” doesn’t work if you have one of those “lights off/Light’s On” clapper thingees and you do allow noises.

24   Sandman    
August 31st, 2007 at 5:00 pm

HJ, that was a rhetrorical question asked in opposition to the orthodox Christian view (my view) of sex being a gift from God meant to be shared in the context of a man and woman in the covenant of of marriage.

As it stands, they can abuse the gift and blaspheme the Gift Giver without much consequence (or so it seems right now), and a way of pooh poohing the biblical perspective is to pose that question.

I got a visual on the clapper…not going near that one!