In the midst of his announcement on Sunday that he now supports same-sex marriage, Rob Bell warned American evangelicals to “adapt or die.” His counsel, intended to be helpful, is actually a guaranteed formula for failure and a proven recipe for disaster. In fact, the only way for us to make a lasting impact on the culture and maintain a relevant witness to society is to do the opposite of what Bell advised.
Over the last few years Bell, a bestselling author and former megachurch pastor, has steadily distanced himself from the mainstream evangelical community. Known for asking provocative questions and challenging the status quo, he amassed a large following which has been drawn to his non-dogmatic approach, an approach which I call a “celebration of ambiguity.”
To paraphrase this approach, rather than the leader saying, “This is the way. It is proven and sure. Follow me,” the leader now says, “Who am I to know? How can anyone be sure? Isn’t it narrow and small-minded of us to be so inflexible and dogmatic?”