Friday, September 17, 2010

Very interesting statement and retraction at WORLD Mag

There is a bit of a firestorm at WORLD Mag where columnist Andrée Seu wrote a glowing essay on Glenn Beck where she made this comment:

But it was obvious to me that Beck wasn’t into the extra money or fame. It was obvious to me that he was a new creation in Christ. I know he’s Mormon and all that. I also remember reading a book by Professor Harvey Conn decades ago that said that you have to be very careful when judging a person’s salvation—some people with lousy theology have their hearts right with God, and some people with impeccable theology are cold toward God.

Glenn Beck isn’t cold toward God. He is red hot. He is “a brand plucked from the fire” (Zechariah 3:2). He knows what pit he was in—and he knows exactly who took him out of it. If I were his station manager I would be biting my fingernails every day, because the man just doesn’t hold back about Jesus, and I can say without hesitation that I have not heard the essentials of the gospel more clearly and boldly in any church than on his program.

I have heard all the criticisms, and I can find sympathy for them—about the Mormonism, about the dangers of religious syncretism, etc. But regarding the Mormon thing, I think we should regard Beck as an Apollos and pray for a Priscilla and Aquila in his life, to steer him better (Acts 18). I just don’t see how anyone can listen to the man for a solid week and not be as blessed as I am by his courage, his utter lack of fear of man, and his sharp and personal testimony of Christ’s transforming power.

Either she doesn't understand mormonism or she doesn't understand the Gospel. Needless to say that didn't sit well with WORLD's mostly evangelical readers and it has prompted a ton of backlash around the web. Today Mickey McLean posted that this had slipped through the editorial process and then posted in full Justin Taylor's thoughtful response to Seu. Here is what McLean said:

On Wednesday, our beloved columnist Andrée Seu wrote a column on her observations on Glenn Beck and his faith, which has drawn a lot of attention in the blogosphere. Our friend Justin Taylor wrote a thoughtful response at his Between Two Worlds blog, which we reprint below with Justin’s permission.

WORLD’s position: All of us need editing. Our website editing system failed in regard to Andrée’s post about Glenn Beck. The breadth of response points out confusion concerning Beck and where he stands. Rather than speculating further, we will push to interview him and ask hard questions. One of the hardest aspects of reporting is assessing hearts, so we try not to do it: We look at what individuals do and say rather than attempting to analyze their relationship with God. For a sense of WORLD’s current understanding of the Beck phenomenon, see
“Beckoning Christians.”

I am glad that the folks at WORLD realized how tragically wrong Seu's comment was although I wonder if they would have said anything if there wasn't such a public outcry. We all need to understand that overcoming an addiction and becoming a more moral person, even a conservative political hero of sorts, is praiseworthy but it is NOT the same thing as being born-again and to suggest that it is amounts to borderline blasphemy at worst and a gross misunderstanding of the Gospel at best. I don't read WORLD magazine at all but this whole episode is proof positive that Beck is impacting the church for the negative.


Seth R. said...

Yes, because, as we all know - Evangelicals are all about salvation through the human work of obtaining the correct theological knowledge.

So be sure to attend your Bible study classes kids!

Otherwise you might not make it to heaven.

Keep working at it!

Arthur Sido said...


Ummmm. What?