Has Mark Driscoll gone Charismatic?

The Sola Sisters have posted a doozey about Mark Driscoll talking to demons and giving extra-biblical advice on how to perform exorcisms.

Had I only read the transcript from the following video–not knowing who it came from–I would have never guessed it came from Mark Driscoll. I would have been sure it came from someone who frequents TBN.

Be sure to visit the Sola Sisters article (linked above) for more on this latest movement away from biblical Christianity by Mark Driscoll.

32 thoughts on “Has Mark Driscoll gone Charismatic?

  1. Pilgrim, Thanks for posting this. Wow. I watched this twice…I felt like watching it in slow motion like a train wreck. There are so many problems with this video, the nonchalant description of casting demons out of people and sending them straight to the pit…so they won’t go to other people of course. I’m amazed that Driscoll has the ability to send demons to hell. I also really enjoyed hearing about the interview technique with the demons asking about their lives and family, almost sounded like they were going to share lunch and a cup of tea.

    So, the conclusion to be taken from this is that Driscoll is a raging charismatic and his true colors are coming out slowly but surely.

    Saddened yet again,


  2. Driscoll says that he is charismatic with a seatbelt. I think ATG is wrong when he says that Driscoll is a “raging charismatic”. Not everyone has perfect theology and I think sometimes we need to allow for grace in some areas. I am not charismatic but I do not think this makes him a “raging” anything.

    Travis (anotherchristianblog.org)


  3. Thanks for the documentation Pilgrim. Driscoll hasn’t changed, nor repented, in 15 years. He started out teaching his philosophies (manipulating the Scriptures in the process) based on his theology fabricated from the works of men, and he continues teaching from his human understanding of what other men have laid down before him, rather than from what we actually see in the Word of God. Then he attempts to validate it by the authority he personally gets from “the White Throne” (as he says in this video). And you’d better accept that authority, or you’re at risk of committing the “sin of questioning”. The tragedy is, this impostor in the pulpit just keeps going from bad to worse in his false teachings and blasphemies, and his gullible followers like in some hypnotic stupor, just nod their heads in agreement.


  4. I am not too familiar with Mark Driscoll (but what I have heard here…which has convinced me to just stay away from him!). My question is does he really believe all that he is saying and doing? What is his intent? (not that it makes it right)

    And what authority (if any) do we have in the name of Jesus? I daily read my Bible…and am in prayer as well. But I get so confused how so many people can believe so many different things about what they read in the Bible…it is mind-boggling.

    After re-reading what I wrote above, I realize that I rambled…I guess my main question is…how can he (or anyone else) believe things they are doing are correct when it is not biblical? If he truly believes what he is saying and believes that he is saved by Jesus….can his incorrect doctrine/views make his salvation null and void?


  5. Katy:

    Regarding your question:

    “If he truly believes what he is saying and believes that he is saved by Jesus….can his incorrect doctrine/views make his salvation null and void?”

    In a word: yes. Salvation is dependent upon the WHOLE Gospel as given in Scripture, not merely the process. That includes Who the Triune God is (His attributes, what He has said about Himself in His Word), man’s condition, man’s inability to save himself, the only means God has provided to save man.

    In Driscoll’s case, he can, and often does, preach “the Gospel” as is traditionally accepted by Evangelical churches. The problem is, he has replaced Jesus with someone else he calls “jesus”, who is not the Jesus Christ described in the whole of Scripture (all-pure, all-righteous, all-true, all-loving, all-holy, etc.). Driscoll’s “jesus” is (as he describes him) a fleshly, worldly, party-going dude, who is a brawler, a “punch you in the nose dude” (his description), a jokester, sometimes a buffoon, who approves of mocking the things of Scripture as well as the great men of faith. That’s the “jesus” Driscoll believes (or claims to believe) is mankind’s savior. Since this unholy, worldly, fleshly degenerate of a man is the one Driscoll attaches the biblical Gospel to, his “gospel” is null and void, because he places on the cross an impostor who has no power to save (because by Driscoll’s description, he is not the God of the Bible). How therefore can Driscoll be saved, since he denies the true and only Savior?.


  6. I think you hear what you want to hear.
    My wife and I found this teaching on spiritual warfare to be incredibly helpful in our experience with some truly demonic dreams – that is, the unclean spirit showed itself to my wife in her dreams over and over. It helped lead us away from this prideful, “I command you in the name of Jesus to leave [even though I haven’t talked to Him first]” nonsense. Through it, Jesus impressed upon me in a greater way the need to go to His Word and go to Him in prayer. Even in this miniscule clip (it is merely a blurb from a four-part pastor’s conference series), that comes through loud and clear.


  7. Travis,

    Quoting your statement from above:
    “Driscoll says that he is charismatic with a seatbelt. I think ATG is wrong when he says that Driscoll is a “raging charismatic”. Not everyone has perfect theology and I think sometimes we need to allow for grace in some areas. I am not charismatic but I do not think this makes him a “raging” anything.”

    I hear what you are saying, but must disagree on these terms: Having grace in certain areas is one thing of which I am seriously committed to. However, Driscoll sitting in his office interviewing demon possessed people nonchalantly as if it is an everyday occurrence that he (in his implied maturity) and casting out demons (with names) is pretty far down the road into raging charismatic beliefs and frankly not far from what I have heard from Benny Hinn, TD Jakes, and the general TBN outpouring. Couple this new info with the “pornographic visions”, the “you can’t handle your ministry if you can’t handle prophecy” and I’ll put his charismatic doctrine up against any of the deliverance ministry charismatics out there. He is knocking on the front door of Charasmania.

    Do we have grace with Driscoll? Yes, we should. Do we look away from his poor theology and bad teaching? No, absolutely not. The balance between love, grace, and protecting the sheep is too great to look away. Not having perfect theology is very common and the nature of the church…but looking away from dangerous theology – and talking to demons, casting demons to hell, spiritual warfare is incredibly dangerous and must be taken seriously – is a big mistake.



  8. theSheild, I was a little confused on what you meant…did you mean that this video was helpful to you? Or not helpful?

    Either way, have you done a study through the NT epistles regarding what Driscoll is talking about? There is no instruction by the apostles to talk to demons or cast them out as he is suggesting. Spiritual Warfare is a dangerous topic and commonly taken waaaaay too far out of context and out of Biblical grounds. The pinnacle of Paul’s writing on spiritual warfare occurs in Ephesians 6:10-18 and the command is to “stand firm” and “put on the whole armor of God”…and the armor isn’t for attacking, it is for standing firm against the schemes (temptation, doubt, fear, anxiety, sin, etc). There is no instruction by Paul or the others to talk to the demons and cast them out. We as believers on this side of the Cross and this side of the apostles are to stand firm.

    In regard to your specific issue, I highly, highly, highly recommend this series by Pastor Brian Borgman on spiritual warfare. This will take any attack by the devil (whether dreams or sin or doubt or you name it) and DESTROY it…because it is all about putting on Christ and standing firm in the Gospel. This series is life changing for anyone with spiritual warfare struggles.


    Sermons 6 through 21 on this Ephesians study by Pastor Brian deal with spiritual warfare in a brilliant way. They have been such a blessing to me.



  9. (ATG above)

    “The pinnacle of Paul’s writing on spiritual warfare occurs in Ephesians 6:10-18 and the command is to “stand firm” and “put on the whole armor of God”…and the armor isn’t for attacking, it is for standing firm against the schemes (temptation, doubt, fear, anxiety, sin, etc).”

    In the four-part seminar, Mark Driscoll spends most of his time talking about exactly that. What I reproduced from your comment above is precisely what we found most helpful about his teaching.
    Actually, it was in talking to the spirit, even though I had encouraged her to talk to Jesus only, that my wife got her butt kicked, so to speak. She will not make that mistake again.
    But I disagree with the implication in your assertion that “There is no instruction by Paul or the others to talk to the demons and cast them out.” The believers absolutely engaged demons and cast them out (Matt. 10, Mark 9, Luke 9-10, Acts 5, 8); but we can understand that the act had to be accompanied with lots of humility, prayer, and repentance.


  10. Shield, I am happy to hear that it was the “other stuff” (which I haven’t heard since I didn’t watch the entire conference) that was most encouraging.

    I understand your disagreement with me and my comment wasn’t completely clear. Of course we see the casting out of demons and such in the Gospels and Acts…but that is my point. Please consider this: We see it there, but we don’t see it in the Apostles teaching through the epistles…and that really means something that we should consider. The demonic activity of the Gospels can be seen diminishing after the cross and ascension of Christ in the book of Acts. There are fewer occurrences in Acts then the Gospels (33+ times in the Gospels compared to about 3 in Acts) and by the time the Epistles are written, no one is giving instructions on how to cast out demons…or talk to demons…or anything that comes from this clip from Driscoll. In addition, these things, were given to the Apostles and disciples by Christ for his purpose during the days he was on the earth and the early church. I believe it can also be seen that these things die off with the Apostles…we shouldn’t assume or presume that we have the same power or purpose as the Apostles did.

    This is why I have a serious problem with the content of this particular video clip. I understand if you disagree, but you should serious consider the epistles having regular reference to evil and the devil, but no references to casting out and talking to them.

    your servant,


  11. theShield:

    Something to consider: the references you gave in the Gospels as well as early in Acts of exorcism have one thing in common: they were accompanied by OTHER signs and wonders during the unique time when Jesus had just recently come to earth, and the church was just beginning. There were a lot of miracles performed for the purpose of drawing people’s attention to the validity of the Deity of Jesus of Nazareth, and to draw attention to the Gospel (that people may be saved). The instruction for the Church (for those already believers), as given by the Lord through the Apostles, is strikingly different when dealing with Spiritual Warfare. As ATG said, conspicuously absent in the instructions to the churches from the Apostles was anything remotely similar to the kind of instruction Driscoll is giving.

    It’s important that we examine the teachings of preacher through the lens of Scripture, not see Scripture through the lens of the preacher.


  12. bigmike, a demon cannot take residence in a true believer of the Lord Jesus Christ. PERIOD. Mark Driscoll is once again proving his lack of biblical knowledge and using a teaching simply to prove a position he has chosen to endorse. The man is a flake. Beyond that, he has come to the point where true believers have the right and are called to be fruit inspectors. What he is producing right now does not look like true fruit off The Vine!


  13. Amen brother! Thank you for that, it seems that churches like this are just exploding in numbers and His true church is becoming more and more clear to me


  14. It should be noted that this lecture that Driscoll gave was given a few years ago. His theology might have been a but different then, who knows where he is at on this issue now. Give him some grace. There isn’t anything particularly extra-biblical in this anyway.


  15. Coen Tate:

    The standard excuse I’ve heard over and again from Driscoll’s defenders is “well, that was what he used to teach”. Apparently oblivious to what logically follows from their reasoning: If Driscoll’s theology changes by the year, what’s the point in listening to him? If what he says today is invalid tomorrow, it certainly isn’t the truth. More specifically, he certainly isn’t preaching God’s truth.

    Nothing extra-biblical here? Where then in our New Testament is the Church commanded to reason with demons, ask demons questions, deal with “generational sin”, etc within God’s own children ?


  16. I guess I have to ask whether or not the threat of demonic attack is real or not. If it is, then, whether the subject shows up in the epistles or not, we have to deal with it and be rightly prepared for its reality. As I attested before, this teaching was exceedingly helpful to my wife and I.
    Moreover, I think the assessment going on in this “discussion” is not taking into focus the whole breadth of what Mark Driscoll was teaching. Desert Pastor above said, “a demon cannot take residence in a true believer of the Lord Jesus Christ. PERIOD. Mark Driscoll is once again proving his lack of biblical knowledge and using a teaching simply to prove a position he has chosen to endorse.” Driscoll says exactly that a demon cannot control or possess a believer in Jesus. But I know firsthand that they absolutely can shout doubts and fear and guilt at you and influence your dreams thereby. Believers get trapped in all sorts of sin not only be caving to the world and the flesh, but also by listening to and believing the devil.


  17. theShield, first, thanks for your comments and your questions. Having visited and served on three different continents, I can assure you that the threat of demonic attack is VERY real. I would go so far as to say that we have a lot more of it here in the West than many Christians think but we are so surrounded by affluence and other distractions that we do not see the spiritual realm and the warfare that is around us as easily as it is often seen or evidenced in places like Asia and Africa.

    Yes, we also need to be prepared for the reality and to be found dressed in the complete armor of God. I would highly recommend “The Christian in Complete Armor” by William Gurnall for a truly biblical understanding of fighting spiritual warfare.

    Yes, it is also true that demons can oppress a true believer and this can manifest itself in many different ways. And while we can fall prey to the world and the flesh, it is what we do next that distinguishes a true believer from an unbeliever or even from a person who has made a profession of faith. A true believer will undergo true conviction of sin, will repent and turn from that sin and have fellowship restored (1 John 1:9). If he does not, the Father will bring times of discipline and chastisement in order to restore that fellowship.

    In addition, I listened again to the video and believe my first statement was correct. He addresses the congregation about a girl who he clearly states was demon-possessed. He then proceeds to tell her that she is “not a dirty girl” and that Christ died for all her sins. Huge contradiction here – either she is demon-possessed and therefore is a dirty girl OR Christ died for her sins and she cannot be inhabited by demons.

    He continues by telling her that by her simply believing the lies of the demons inhabiting her that she will by choice live that way. Again, a problem because if she is a believer, then she is a new creation in Christ. She cannot remain in sins of the flesh if she is a believer. If she is not a believer, then she cannot and does not have the ability to choose to live in a way that is not depraved.

    Further issues arise when he makes the statement that he verifies all of his demonic contact and the information they provide and “checks this all out by the White Throne.”

    He indicates that in “speaking” with the demons that he has to check whether there is anything that will keep the person free from demons reinhabiting after they confess and repent of their sin! What a load of drivel. We NEVER see or hear such a thing from the lips of the Saviour. Mark uses an example of a couple who were sitting there and a demon supposedly tells Mark that there is a reason why they should not leave because of an unconfessed adultery. He then tells the gullible audience that there are only two choices for the couple being counseled – 1) they can lie and allow the demon to continue to live in them or 2) they can confess the guilt and move forward.

    SORRY – there is a 3rd option, maybe the person doing the counseling is wrong and is not being truly led by the Holy Spirit of God. Maybe they are so perverted in their thinking that they can come up with whatever they want by reading something into the situation that is not really there. In so doing, the counselor will destroy the family! A counselor undergoing this training is not infallible, and neither are they receiving words of affirmation directly from the throne of God.

    I could go on and on, but it is enough to say that this man is dangerous and is leading many astray. His theology is shaky and best, and at worst in places has crossed the line into heresy. He is a man that seems to live and to enjoy living in issues of perversion. You cannot be so infatuated with such a topic and not come away unscathed no matter who you are or what position you hold in the church.

    PS – Listen to the section from about time reference 6’30” and you will hear a clear statement that he believes a person who is a believer can be and will be possessed by demon (and multiple demons) unless they continue to repent and keep short accounts with God.
    On one additional note, Mark Driscoll recommends a book by Clint Arnold who quotes men like Merrill Unger, and Neil Anderson. All three of these men believe that a Christian can be completely possessed by a demon despite being indwelt by the Holy Spirit of God. Clint Arnold’s book confirms this in chapter 2 beginning on p. 73 of his little book.


  18. Shield, demonic attack is 100% real and a concern…that is why we have Ephesians 6:10-20. We are to stand against the schemes of the devil and his minions. Stand firm and resist his schemes through immersing ourselves in the gospel and by putting on Christ. Brother, stew in the glorious power of this passage.



  19. Considering the fruit shown by Mark in all other areas, what do you think of the possibility that Mark isn’t unrepentant/unsaved, as some of you have said, but that he’s backslidden, rather? After all, we are never sinless once saved, until we’re glorified.


  20. @EriK, I think it is profitless speculation. There is enough evidence to suggest he could be saved, but just in a horrible mess. Few unsaved false teachers would present the Gospel as clearly as he does at times. There is ample evidence to suggest he isn’t saved. We’re probably best keeping our distance, warning others about what he teaches, and avoiding speculation about his precise standing with the Lord. We don’t need to assess that question to know to keep our distance.


  21. EriK:

    Fruit really is the issue, and Jesus tells us we would know people by their fruit (not by their words). But what is He referring to by “fruit”? Would “good fruit” mean good works? Nice words? Good attitude? If that were true, a Buddhist (who does not follow Jesus at all) would be bearing “good fruit”. Thus, the fruit Jesus is talking about can’t be merely our words or benevolent acts. Jesus is talking about fruit which manifests from branches that are either: i) attached to Him “The Vine” (good fruit), or ii) from branches that are attached to some other tree (bad fruit). Those who are truly of Jesus Christ, who are truly attached and abide in Him, will bear the fruit of truth and righteousness. They will also not bear any bad fruit (teaching and/or behavior that is at odds with God’s Word).

    Jesus further tells us that calling Him “Lord”, and even doing many wonderful works in His name, mean nothing to Him if they are also practicing what is forbidden in His Word (Matt. 7:21-23). This does not mean that the true child of God will never sin in the weakness of his flesh, or that he will never be mistaken about certain things in Scripture due to his lack of understanding. But a true child of God simply cannot continually preach false doctrine, or continually teach that which is in direct violation of God’s word, or practice what God forbids in His Word (all bad fruit), and be of Christ.

    God has made it crystal clear in His Word (both Testaments) that He does not allow mixture of the sacred and the profane. Or of mixing righteousness with unrighteousness, of mixing light with darkness, of mixing truth and error. Nor will the true child of God mix spiritual truth and spiritual lies. He will not mix true and false doctrine. He will not one day preach a sound orthodox gospel, and turn right around and preach that which is against God’s Word.

    Tragically, this is what Mr. Driscoll has manifested over the course of the last 15 or so years of his “pastorate”. If there is one thing he is best known for, it is mixing the sacred and the profane. Mixing truth with error. And thus he has born, and continues to bear, bad fruit. Fruit which is not consistent with someone attached to Jesus Christ, The Vine. It has been well documented on this site (simply search above for “Driscoll”) that he preaches a different “jesus” than the Jesus of the Scriptures. He has often blasphemed the very character of God in his books and sermons, He mocks and ridicules the prophets and other great men of God in the Scriptures. He teaches that perverse, deviant sexual practices are actually prescribed by God in His Word (making God the author of such perversion). He endorses practices at odds with Scripture (such as mysticism, contemplative prayer, etc.). He endorses Schuller, Warren and other false teachers. His teaching and behavior has disqualified him from being an elder or pastor, yet he continues in rebellion to God’s Word. And the list goes on.

    Driscoll’s fruit isn’t just bad. It is grossly, perversely bad.


  22. EriK,
    Compare Driscoll with what Scripture says about the qualifications of pastors/elders/preachers/overseer…
    1st Timothy 3 –
    ‘It is a trustworthy statement: if any man aspires to the office of overseer, it is a fine work he desires to do. An overseer, then, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, prudent, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not addicted to wine or pugnacious, but gentle, peaceable, free from the love of money. He must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity (but if a man does not know how to manage his own household, how will he take care of the church of God?), and not a new convert, so that he will not become conceited and fall into the condemnation incurred by the devil. And he must have a good reputation with those outside the church, so that he will not fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.’

    Zero in on his teaching, does it line up with Scripture EVERY TIME? I do not trust a ‘man of God’ who dresses like the culture, wearing cutesy t-shirts and desires to be fashionable. I look to a man who desires not to be like the culture, but to speak out against the culture using the sword of the Spirit. In my opinion, this type of dress shows severe immaturity, which would disqualify a man to be an overseer of the church. Many have a knowledge of reformed doctrine, but there is no regeneration by God. They can talk the talk, but can they walk the walk? Satan is so very deceitful, making the wolves look so much like sheep that you cannot tell the difference. It is not a sin to call a wolf a wolf if he bears rotten fruit. Expose his false teachings and steer clear of him.


  23. What do people think of Francis Chan? He dresses like the culture yet it seems like he stands vastly apart from the culture. He jokes around in church, but it seems like he gets it more than most.


  24. “He dresses like the culture yet it seems like he stands vastly apart from the culture.”

    Church people who wear suits and ties are dressing like the culture too – just a different demographic of that culture. In Christ -Jim


  25. Wow, this is crazy. Why does he talk to demons? Jesus is the only person who can rebuke demons. Where in the Bible does anyone else? Even Michael the Archangel, the head of the army of God did not rebuke demons, but said, “The Lord rebuke you.” Jude 1:9. I recently heard him quoted as saying that John McArthur preaches the Bible too much. Maybe Driscoll should try studying the Bible. I’d like to know where he got this information that we are all supposed to exorcise demons.


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