Why are people like Glennon Doyle Melton and Jen Hatmaker so famous?

I keep seeing all these people in the culture like Rob Bell, Rachel Held Evans, Brian McLaren, Joel Osteen getting all this support from Christians – support that the people I admire like Jay Richards, William Lane Craig, Scott Klusendorf and Ryan T. Anderson don’t seem to get.

Glennon Doyle Melton in a church
Glennon Doyle Melton in a church

First, here is Glennon being celebrated in the far-left Washington Post.

Excerpt:

Christian author Glennon Doyle Melton — known as the “ultimate confessional writer” for her honest portrayals of her struggling marriage, addiction and eating disorder — has opened up with another big revelation.

She is dating again, her new partner is a woman and that woman is celebrity soccer champ Abby Wambach.

[…]Melton’s news comes three months after she announced her divorce from Craig Melton, her husband of 14 years…

[…]Glennon Doyle Melton has reiterated for years her position affirming that same-sex marriage is not sinful and celebrating love in various forms. A few Christian writers who champion LGBT rights in the church congratulated Melton on Twitter on Sunday night. (Another Christian mom and blogger, Jen Hatmaker, came under fire last month for announcing her support of same-sex marriage for the first time.)

Melton’s coming out follows fellow inspirational author and friend Elizabeth Gilbert, of “Eat, Pray, Love” fame. Gilbert announced in September she was in a romantic relationship with her female best friend, just two months after divorcing over the summer.

Both Melton and Gilbert, who had not openly been in lesbian relationships before, first shared their news on Facebook, discussed the importance of living their truth and referred to their new partners as “my person.”

The similarities reflect what fans immediately notice: Both women value transparency and share an open-life-memoir writing style. Both have undergone spiritual journeys, separations and sexual awakenings.

[…]Melton and Gilbert have appeared on her career-making book list and popular programs. During a personable Oprah Winfrey Network interview in September, Oprah called Melton a “breath of fresh air.”

[…]Gilbert and Melton met for the first time last fall, but Melton has long admired and been inspired by Gilbert. “For the past decade she has been a minister to me,” she said.

I sent this story to a young lady I admire very much, and I was greatly comforted by her reply: “She is very deceived as to the truth. ” Thank God for women who care more what the Bible says than being popular. Just because a woman is physically fit and charismatic, that doesn’t make her a role model for Bible-believing Christians. Her book is endorsed as “epic” by Elizabeth Gilbert, which is a good sign that doesn’t mean that she is reliable where it counts – defending the moral values taught in the Bible.

Brandon and Jen Hatmaker
Brandon and Jen Hatmaker (actual photo, not Photoshopped)

Here’s an article by former lesbian Rosaria Butterfield posted at The Gospel Coalition about Jen Hatmaker and her husband Brandon.

It says:

If this were 1999—the year that I was converted and walked away from the woman and lesbian community I loved—instead of 2016, Jen Hatmaker’s words about the holiness of LGBT relationships would have flooded into my world like a balm of Gilead. How amazing it would have been to have someone as radiant, knowledgeable, humble, kind, and funny as Jen saying out loud what my heart was shouting: Yes, I can have Jesus and my girlfriend. Yes, I can flourish both in my tenured academic discipline (queer theory and English literature and culture) and in my church.

[…]To be clear, I was not converted out of homosexuality. I was converted out of unbelief. I didn’t swap out a lifestyle. I died to a life I loved. Conversion to Christ made me face the question squarely: did my lesbianism reflect who I am (which is what I believed in 1999), or did my lesbianism distortwho I am through the fall of Adam? I learned through conversion that when something feels right and good and real and necessary—but stands against God’s Word—this reveals the particular way Adam’s sin marks my life. Our sin natures deceive us. Sin’s deception isn’t just “out there”; it’s also deep in the caverns of our hearts.

How I feel does not tell me who I am. Only God can tell me who I am, because he made me and takes care of me. He tells me that we are all born as male and female image bearers with souls that will last forever and gendered bodies that will either suffer eternally in hell or be glorified in the New Jerusalem. Genesis 1:27 tells me that there are ethical consequences and boundaries to being born male and female.

[…]I only know who I really am when the Bible becomes my lens for self-reflection, and when the blood of Christ so powerfully pumps my heart whole that I can deny myself, take up the cross, and follow him.

The essential mistake that all the popular people make is that they distort the Bible in order to feel good about themselves and to be liked by other people. But sometimes, when you put being liked by other people first, you neglect the more important goal of being liked by God. Feeling good and being liked is not the same as being faithful and obedient to God. And God does not like when people misrepresent his character to non-Christians who are “looking for loopholes” in his Word. The whole point of Christianity is self-denial and self-sacrificial obedience, as modeled in Jesus, who gave up his wishes and desires by being willing to die to save others.

1 Corinthians 6:9-10: (Paul writing)

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality,

10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.

Matthew 19:1-11: (Jesus’ view of marriage)

1 Now when Jesus had finished these sayings, he went away from Galilee and entered the region of Judea beyond the Jordan.

2 And large crowds followed him, and he healed them there.

3 And Pharisees came up to him and tested him by asking, “Is it lawful to divorce one’s wife for any cause?”

4 He answered, “Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female,

5 and said, ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’?

6 So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.”

7 They said to him, “Why then did Moses command one to give a certificate of divorce and to send her away?”

8 He said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart Moses allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so.

9 And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery.”

10 The disciples said to him, “If such is the case of a man with his wife, it is better not to marry.”

11 But he said to them, “Not everyone can receive this saying, but only those to whom it is given.

If you want to read reflections on these teachings that honor the plain meaning of the words, then by all means, pick up Ryan T. Anderson’s “Truth Overruled: The Future of Marriage and Religious Freedom” and Michael L. Brown’s “Can You Be Gay and Christian?: Responding With Love and Truth to Questions About Homosexuality“. It’s more important to align your beliefs with reason and evidence than with feelings and peer-approval.

Even ordinary Christians like me who are single have to say no to our desires to have sex before we are married. Although it is fashionable in the LGBT community to say “God wouldn’t make me have desires that I couldn’t fulfill” and “it’s not fair because straight people can fulfill their desires” this is baloney. I’m straight, and I have been thwarted in fulfilling my desire for sex for decades. It’s a normal Christian life to go without something you need and to be hungry. It’s not exceptional. This is obvious to anyone who reads the Bible and accepts the plain meaning of the words. Jesus didn’t tell people things that they wanted to hear, he told them hard truths that sometimes got him into a lot of trouble with sinful people. I’m really not sure why people who claim to be Christians are attracted to the exact opposite – false teachers who say things that make them feel good and negate the need for forgiveness from God, followed by repentance from sin.

6 thoughts on “Why are people like Glennon Doyle Melton and Jen Hatmaker so famous?”

  1. Short answer: “For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.”
    2 Timothy 4:3

  2. Same-sex “marriage” is nothing but Satan’s mockery of Christ and His Church.
    “There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof is the way of death.” (Prov. 14:12).

  3. Timeless biblical truths clearly articulated-thank you! In our culture denial of self rarely gets even a mention must less commitment yet it is inescapable in a believer’s life. I’m afraid many who call themselves Christians are in for some big surprises.

  4. To give truth to him who loves it not is but to give him more plentiful material for misinterpretation.
    – George MacDonald
    I think it’s a dangerous mistake to think non-believers are the only ones who reject truth or the investigation of the truth. I say this knowing I was a person who used to not study theology and didn’t study my Bible as much as I do now; which could have led me down paths of false thinking. I would add it’s important to try our best to fully understand what we believe in order to defend what we believe from non-believers, but also to challenge our pastors and leaders in the event they say something not true. I find fideistic epistemology not always helpful.

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