I've never attended a service at Mars Hill, and I've never met Mark Driscoll. But I've met plenty of people who have. When asked for their opinion of Mark, the invariable response is along the lines of, "He's brilliant. He has issues."
That latter part is the problem. Everyone has issues, but Mark Driscoll's problem is he doesn't want to hear about his. The article mentions:
Nowhere is the connection between Driscoll’s hypermasculinity and his Calvinist theology clearer than in his refusal to tolerate opposition at Mars Hill. The Reformed tradition’s resistance to compromise and emphasis on the purity of the worshipping community has always contained the seeds of authoritarianism: John Calvin had heretics burned at the stake and made a man who casually criticized him at a dinner party march through the streets of Geneva, kneeling at every intersection to beg forgiveness. Mars Hill is not 16th-century Geneva, but Driscoll has little patience for dissent. In 2007, two elders protested a plan to reorganize the church that, according to critics, consolidated power in the hands of Driscoll and his closest aides. Driscoll told the congregation that he asked advice on how to handle stubborn subordinates from a “mixed martial artist and Ultimate Fighter, good guy” who attends Mars Hill. “His answer was brilliant,” Driscoll reported. “He said, ‘I break their nose.’ ” When one of the renegade elders refused to repent, the church leadership ordered members to shun him. One member complained on an online message board and instantly found his membership privileges suspended. “They are sinning through questioning,” Driscoll preached. John Calvin couldn’t have said it better himself.This is hardly the first time I've heard about Driscoll's resistance to criticism. How this can be imagined as Biblical pastorship, I have no idea.
I'm not sure what it is about Reform theology that draws loud-mouthed jerks, but it's a shame such thoughtful theology is so frequently obscured by the actions of men (including Calvin and Luther themselves).
On the other hand, dogpiling Mark Driscoll's antics isn't productive, either. As a friend put it, his detractors would do well to take a cue from Paul in Phillipians 1:
It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. The latter do so in love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice.But, my friend went on, Mark and his supporters at Mars Hill might do well to take these cues, as well.