"...When He [Jesus] saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd." Matt 9:36

"Do not rob the poor, because he is poor... for the Lord will take up their case and plunder those who plunder them." Proverbs 22:22-23

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Matt Chandler's SBTS Sermon to Future Preachers

Matt Chandler is a very interesting young preacher from the Village Church in Dallas, Texas. He spoke at the FBC Jax Pastor's Conference in 2009. His church has grown rapidly over the last 10 years or so from a few hundred to 5000 or more, and three campuses. What he has to say to the modern church and to the modern-day preacher is what makes him so interesting to me. This guy is certainly not cut from the same mold as the typical SBC mega-church pastor, even though his church is growing very rapidly.

For starters, I recommend listening to this sermon he preached at Southern Seminary last week. Not the typical message you hear, for sure, from a SBC pastor of a large church. I'm not sure that the message was all that well received by the hearers, but it was one that needed to be preached. Very direct and hard-hitting about pastors getting into the ministry to promote themselves and to achieve Western success, ignoring the scriptures in Hebrew 11 that many will NOT have success (and will be devoured).

I will make a few comments on the sermon later, but wanted to share it with you hear on this site first, along with this quote Chandler used from Eugene Peterson's book, Working the Angles: The Shape of Pastoral Integrity:

"I don't know of any other profession in the world that is quite as easy to fake as ours. For a long time, I have been convinced that I could take a person with a high school education, give him or her a six-month trade school training, and provide a pastor who would be satisfactory to any discriminating American congregation. The curriculum would consist of four courses.

Course I: Creative Plagiarism. I would put you in touch with a wide range of excellent and inspirational talks, show you how to alter them just enough to obscure their origins, and get you a reputation for wit and wisdom.

Course II: Voice Control for Prayer and Counseling. We would develop your own distinct style of Holy Joe intonation, acquiring the skill in resonance and modulation that conveys and unmistakable aura of sanctity.

Course III: Efficient Office Management. There is nothing that parishioners admire more in their pastors than the capacity to run a tight ship administratively. If we return all phone calls within twenty-four hours, answer all the letters within a week, distributing enough carbons to key people so that they know we are on top of things, and have just the right amount of clutter on our desk—not too much, or we appear inefficient, not too little or we appear underemployed—we quickly get the reputation for efficiency that is far more important than anything that we actually do.

Course IV: Image Projection. Here we would master the half-dozen well-known and easily implemented devices that that create the impression that we are terrifically busy and widely sought after for counsel by influential people in the community. A one-week refresher course each year would introduce new phrases that would convince our parishioners that we are bold innovators on the cutting edge of the megatrends and at the same time solidly rooted in all the traditional values of our sainted ancestors.

(I have been laughing for several years over this trade school training with which I plan to make my fortune. Recently, though, the joke has backfired on me. I keep seeing advertisements for institutes and workshops all over the country that invite pastors to sign up for this exact curriculum. The advertised course offerings are not quite as honestly labeled as mine, but the content appears to be identical—a curriculum that trains pastors to satisfy the current consumer tastes in religion. I’m not laughing anymore.)"

Link to Audio of Matt Chandler SBTS Sermon Nov 2009

31 comments:

Anonymous said...

Watch out Watch Dog! You just spoke a good word about Chandler, who is a good friend of Dr. Brunson. They enjoy meals and conversation together. Surely you didn't mean to speak a positive word about a close friend of Team Brunson.

Or did you not know that Dr. Brunson has encouraged Chandler in his ministry, has given him insight into preaching and leading? And did you not know that Chandler is one of the most influential, Biblically-based preachers of his generation?

Surely you didn't mean to say an encouraging word, did you?

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

You bet I do. I don't care who he is friends with. Although Chandler is a Calvinist, what he has to say to the self-promoting, money-seeking, empire-building preacher today needs to be heard.

Anonymous said...

So the fact that Brunson has poured time, investment, prayer, encouragement, and feedback into the life of Chandler and the Village Church doesn't bother you?

So maybe Brunson has some good things going, maybe he cares about the next generation of preachers and churches, maybe his heart really does beat for the Kingdom?

Anonymous said...

Don't be fooled. Chandler is making the paid speaking gig rounds in christendom and getting famous and is well paid. He is also patriarchal.

So why aren't more celebrity pastors broken bu his words he speaks from their stages?

Because they don't think they apply to them and besides, Chandler does not rebuke them. He is one of them.

Stop being fooled by the celebrities.

Anonymous said...

I don't agree completely with the Calvinist view point but it seems that they are the only ones who speak out against the professional pastor mentality. I went to a conference this week and most of the speakers were reformed and they hit it hard about some of the crud we allow to go own in our churches.
Pastor Chris

Anonymous said...

I'm gonna have to agree with 10:18 AM Anon. Chandler is a mega-pastor in the making, only "hipper". And his church is on the way to yet another "relevant" mega-church. He mocks what he claims not to be like.

Anonymous said...

I don't agree completely with the Calvinist view point but it seems that they are the only ones who speak out against the professional pastor mentality. I went to a conference this week and most of the speakers were reformed and they hit it hard about some of the crud we allow to go own in our churches.
Pastor Chris

November 15, 2009 10:57 AM

I live in SBC Calvinist land and I can tell you they are MORE authoritarian than the free willers. AND, they are making their own Reformed market niche and getting paid big bucks to speak and write books. Don't be fooled, they are on the gravy train, too.

Anonymous said...

UMM..I don't think...UMMM...he is that great a...UMM... of a speaker....He reminds me...UMM...of President Obama...UMM...without a teleprompter. And...UMM...his content is...UMM....not that great.

Anonymous said...

Seems to me Mac was talking about greedy pastors not too long ago, and doesn't he have some training materials where he cautions pastor's and tells them to guard against greed ?
Chandler is talking about these other pastors as if he is not one of them.

They are all PERFORMERS. They make us think they are right there with us, demanding answers and accountability.

NOT SO!. They just want the money, prestige and status and they will do anything, and say anything to get it.

I don't buy it for a minute. Chandler and Brunson are cut from the same mold as Patterson, Bakker, Myers, Dollar, Osteen ..... They have the lingo, the intonation, the presentation and the saavy. They may sound like they are preaching the WORD, but they are just crafting biblical words and concepts into money making schemes.

I'm fed up.

Anonymous said...

Now, if only they would practice what they preach....

Anonymous said...

Tom, look behind the "words" to see the actions. I learned a long time ago to WATCH what they do. One of the things some do is preach against something to make people believe they are against it, then they "fly under the radar" and do exactly what they preach against. I caught on to this years ago. I think you may have many examples of this today. I think we must increase our personal Bible study, and worship, and stop relying on so called preachers and so called churches to give us the word of God. Most preachers today don't know much more about the Bible than the "average" Christian. Trust God to reveal His word to you and you won't go wrong. I have never understood why people think another man has to tell them what God says. We are almost at the point of Jesus coming again. The churches have "FALLEN AWAY", they are business's with CEO preachers doing WORKS and not preaching SALVATION through Jesus Christ. The proof is in the number of people (NOT) getting saved. If a preacher preaches on any subject more than SALVATION then he is pretty much useless to the Lord and us. It's nice to preach little messages on life, and what people ought to be about, but Salvation is Heaven or Hell for the lost. If people were really honest with themselves they would see churches as they really are "centers for social get togethers", in which they pay huge prices to a "celebrity" to keep it going.
1 Cor. 9:16: "For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of; for necessity is laid upon me, yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel".
P.S. I have NO USE AT ALL FOR CALVANISM!!!!

Anonymous said...

10:53....are people in general just getting sick of having a fraud perpetrated against them for money, (in the church, in the government, in general) Everybody is for sale today...they'll say anything in the church if it will increase their profit. A lot of these people don't believe a word they are saying. They think everybody is stupid and gullible, not realizing just how sick and tired people are of hearing lies.

Anonymous said...

Anon 10:53 and 11:33
Well said. Both of you.
The measure of a man lies in what he chooses to tolerate and what makes him REBEL. It's time to REBEL and stop giving to these people and corporations.

Anonymous said...

I spoke with a man today who has attended the same church for 27 years which is now a huge mega church. It has been a mega church since the late 80's. He is fed up and leaving.

He said the very same thing: They do not practice what they preach to others. And this is in every area of their lives from money to where they live to how they educate their kids, etc. He said he was so sick of the hypocrisy, the big salaries, the building programs, being charged for every event, and the constant beating about money when they are not willing to take a cut... and just mad he did not see it sooner.

Anonymous said...

Most of what I have heard from him in his sermons comes across as prideful and arrogant.

Stephen Myshrall said...

10:18am and 5:52pm: you guys make me sick.

please tell me what "mega-church" pastor moves into a 25-year old house and wrestles with whether or not he should replace his stained, preowned carpet or keep the damn thing and give the money--which he & and his wife saved for months and months--to support missions. Tell me, when was the last time your pastor did something like that OR better yet, when is the last time you did something like that? How clean is your carpet for the sake of the gospel?

you guys are fools with nothing better to do with your time than to stand over, demean, and critique Chandler.

did you know that he has signed all external earnings over to The Village Church? Hey morons, do your homework: http://hv.thevillagechurch.net/blog/hvpastor/?p=17

GET OFF THE COMPUTER, GET A LIFE, AND DO SOMETHING RISKY FOR THE KINGDOM, AND THEN YOU SIT BACK A BE A TARGET FOR CRITICISM JERKS

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Stephen - thanks for sharing that link to Chandler's blog where he explains his decision about earning outside income. I see also on the Highland Church website that if someone desires to have Chandler speak, the honoraria must be sent directly to Highland.

Now, this is definitely bucking a trend in the SBC. Imagine if Hunt or a Brunson or a Gaines or a Ed Young, Jr. were to tell their congregation that any income from their speaking or books or conferences will all go to the church directly without passing through their hands??

Anonymous said...

Hey Stephen,
Why do you think you know that well crafted story about Chandler's carpet.

Wise Up my friend. This is a well played game and the best players are the preachers!

Anonymous said...

They think everybody is stupid and gullible, not realizing just how sick and tired people are of hearing lies.
___________________________________

I respectfully disagree. They think everybody is gullible and will continue to give $1,500,000.00EVERY SINGLE MONTH at FBC Jax, AND be STUPID enough to think the millionnaire pastor is "humble" and "transparent." I don't which is sicker...giving those millions every month, or actually belieiving the man is humble and transparent. I don't think even the preacher himself, or those closest to him, would claim he is humble and transparent.

If the money flow ever stopped, these pastors might actually BECOME humble and transparent in an attempt to turn the cash flow back on. Until then, anyone who realizes these pastors have no clothes, will be silenced or run-off, or slandered. You are seeing it unfold in front of your eyes at FBC Jax.

Anonymous said...

Silenced, run-off, and slandered!!!Boy you said a mouthful. Just business as usual. Been there, had it done to me, "ain't" gonna let it happen again. Expect this stuff out of the world, don't expect it from "God's Men" (ha). So much love, don't you know. Rather pet a snake. At least you know it's a snake, and it doesn't expect you to tithe, for the priviledge of getting SILENCED, RUN-OFF AND SLANDERED!!!

Anonymous said...

"please tell me what "mega-church" pastor moves into a 25-year old house and wrestles with whether or not he should replace his stained, preowned carpet or keep the damn thing and give the money--which he & and his wife saved for months and months--to support missions. Tell me, when was the last time your pastor did something like that OR better yet, when is the last time you did something like that? How clean is your carpet for the sake of the gospel?"

PLEASE tell me how you know this? Did he mention all this in some sermons? (go read Matthew 6 if he did)

Anonymous said...

did you know that he has signed all external earnings over to The Village Church? Hey morons, do your homework: http://hv.thevillagechurch.net/blog/hvpastor/?p=17

GET OFF THE COMPUTER, GET A LIFE, AND DO SOMETHING RISKY FOR THE KINGDOM, AND THEN YOU SIT BACK A BE A TARGET FOR CRITICISM JERKS

November 18, 2009 2:27 AM

Did you learn this delightful language and demeanor from Chandler? Is this how he talks to his flock?

Anonymous said...

did you know that he has signed all external earnings over to The Village Church? Hey morons, do your homework: http://hv.thevillagechurch.net/blog/hvpastor/?p=17

GET OFF THE COMPUTER, GET A LIFE, AND DO SOMETHING RISKY FOR THE KINGDOM, AND THEN YOU SIT BACK A BE A TARGET FOR CRITICISM JERKS

November 18, 2009 2:27 AM

Did you learn this loving communication style from Chandler? Does he model this for you?

Anonymous said...

See Watchdog what you have attracted here? You were trying to compliment Chandler, and well you should - he is a find man of God and an excellent communicator.

But this site has become an open forum of dissent, vitriol, and cynicism. And now they have turned against the one (Chandler) that you deem authentic.

When blood is in the water, the sharks come out...and even innocent, good men are hurt.

I am surprised you did not see this coming years ago when you began this...I most certainly did.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Anon - "good men get hurt"...because Chandler might get criticized on this blog does mean he is being hurt. To the contrary, if people on this blog and others take a look at his doctrine and life, and discuss them - some criticize some affirm and commend - that is a GOOD thing. And from what I've learned about Chandler, he is quite a contrast to your typical mega church pastor. Don't agree with him on a number of things...but his ministry is worth looking at and discussing.

Anonymous said...

FBC Watch Dog,

In what areas do you not agree with Chandler? And of course his name is hurt when attacks against him go uncontested by Chandler. The biblical precept is to go to the person, to communicate to the person - not anonymously vomit unfounded comments about him.

I am certain that you know that you and I both one day must still stand before a seat of judgment...and that what Jesus, the righteous Judge will require of us is two-fold: 1) Our words will be judged. 2) Our actions and deed done in the body will be judged.

As your brother, I plead with you to not gain up for yourself a overwhelming judgment of your words and actions.

Anonymous said...

Keep praying.

Jon G said...

For all intereseted/concerned,

Matt had a seizure on Thursday morning (Thanksgiving morning) and was rushed to the hospital. They have found a small mass in his front lobe.
He will return to the doctor on Tuesday (Dec 1) to see what needs to be done.
Matt is an incredible young man of God - I personally feel he is one of the best preachers of his generation.
We can all agree to pray for him and his family.

Jon

Mark Worshiper said...

For all of you cowards out there who love to speak your mind under the cover of anonymity. My name is Mark Lavallo not Anonymous. I attend a Foursquare Church in Torrance Ca called Kings Harbor. So feel free to look me up!!!!!

I find it amazing that so many of you focus on the person or his friends rather than his teaching. Just looking for something to find fault, so just like the Pharisees you can say "got yah". In all of the rantings I found not one scripture reference quoted to refute his teachings. He is hard on people and blunt in his approach. But scripture tells us "Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses" (Proverbs 27:6)

Good chance not one of you know him personally, I don't. But his theology is right on and thats what I look at. He may be a hypocrite and a liar but only time will tell. Just because he leads a large church means nothing. Our church is around 2000 and growing. Our pastor Chris is a no nonsense teacher not as in your face as Matt but close.

So please tell me what's wrong with God growing a church. I know some are by mans efforts, I just don't see that with him.
So please let's here it some scripture something credible not just sniveling cowards hiding in the dark.
Blessings in love,
Mark

Also I just became aware of Matt and have ben listing to all of his teachings most of witch are fully transcribed on the church web site (for you critics just try to find something). And was unaware of his sickness till now. I found it interesting that after the last entry it went silent. Hmm... a little conviction to all the critics???

I pray that God will bring healing to Matt and comfort to his family and friends. I pray for wisdom for his doctors and a move of the Holy Spirit to bring healing.

dunahoo said...

all these anonymous names are about as bad as those acclaimed pastors that declare the ridiculous claims against Driscoll at the SBC Convention. I am a youth pastor at a suburb church of Nashville that is SBC. I love Driscoll and have used his books as a great help with my youth...

Anyway, as Chandler would say for those guys who cant come out and be bold to say who you are, its cowardous and simply being a charlatan. Chandler has loved his congregation and teaches the gospel. It's a shame the south is becoming a graveyard because folks in the church are not embracing such men as Matt Chandler. A man who, despite his cancer, thanks God for allowing him to suffer. A man who recognizes the call to suffer. A man who recognizes the silly religious clowns who care nothing about the church, but their selves and own appeasement. A man who encourages and admonishes his congregation to love lost folk, press each other in the Scriptures, grow in sanctification with the Lord Jesus Christ, and to live on mission in the power of the Holy Spirit.

I am quickly reminded why Driscoll calls bloggers nutjobs, and Chandler calls them clowns who cant move out of their parents house. It's because people want to slam other folk (especially Christians, which makes no sense considering the very Gospel were called to) and live in anonymity. Those that live in anonymity fear man, fear truth, and as good as those men that Paul rebuked of the Corinthian church. Step up, be sanctified, and furiously love those God has positioned before you.

For those in the South lets take Hebrews 10:23-25 and live it. Or else, this thing (the South) thats being called the graveyard of dead churches and de-churched will come to pass.

If you want to talk to me email me a dunahoo@gmail.com. My name is John Dunahoo.

Anonymous said...

most of your comments are completely wrong.Matt Chandler tells it like it is and dose not tell people or pastors what they want to hear but what the bible actually says.