One of the young men the Lord has put in my life to help mentor had the issue of Paul Tripp’s video publicizing an upcoming Desiring God conference from The ministry of John Piper brought to his attention today. So he wrote to me wondering if I was aware of this sad issue.

I pointed out that CRN covered it the day that Steve Camp did his post: Paul Tripp Likes to Say the S-Word because here I think he’s dead on target. There’s no excuse for dirty mouths in the pulpit. In my opinion this is just another example of trying to be “hip” and appeal to the postevangelical and emerging crowd. This is why I quoted the following from Camp’s post as the lead-in:

Paul Tripp has discovered the “s” word. He likes to say it; he giggles like a red-faced school girl when he does; he thinks its cool; he thinks he’s cutting edge and culturally relevant; he thinks he’s being radical; he thinks he’s being profound; he thinks he’s being biblical, but yet never quotes one verse of Scripture; and Piper has produced this wasteful intestinal discharge (pun intended) and condones what Tripp is saying. Who has spiked the water in Minnesota?…

FYI: this is one of the promo videos for Piper’s upcoming DG Conference “The Power of Words and the Wonder of God” at the end of September produced by his ministry. (Online source)

In addition I also linked to a post by Ingrid Schlueter at Slice of Laodicea where she begins:

Steve Camp has a good post up about yet another Christian speaker who thinks that filthy language is chic. Thank you, Mark Driscoll, for your example. We really appreciate it. What is it with evangelicals and toilet language these days? When men like John Piper give credence to this kind of thing, is it any wonder we’re seeing a trend?

Maybe it made Paul Tripp feel manly to use the s-word. With the effeminization of men these days, that’s about all that’s left in many of their arsenals. What the real issue seems to be is maturity. Back in 4th grade, the attention seekers would do just about anything to stand out from the crowd… (Online source)

I then added how juvenile I personaly think all of this is when I said thinking as one of the more immature Middle School kids I used to coach: “Such is the state of postevangelical Christianity: *tee hee* ‘Paul just said a swear.’ *tee hee*” In my various secular vocations having been a morning drive radio personality, stand-up comic, professional musician in L.A. as well as a football coach for many years has made it difficult for people to shock me.

My point is I’m not exactly squeamish about language having heard it all. So my objection to this evangelical fascination with speaking in a “childish” fashion comes from the same place as it seems it does from Nathan Busenitz in this article today from the Pulpit Magazine of John MacAthur’s ministry:

There is a legitimate form of “harsh language” that Christians can and should use. Such language encompasses the courageous confrontation of sin and hypocrisy along with the clear denunciation of false religion and doctrinal error. It does not involve profanity, silliness, or reckless vulgarity, yet it might be rightly regarded as “harsh” because it is tenaciously intolerant of error. It speaks the truth directly and without apology—saying what needs to be said, even if doing so results in being unpopular or unliked. (Online source)

And then I told this young man who had contacted me that I don’t really think with the Church in flaming apostasy we need to be doing dissertations on what “dirty” words those still in spiritual Junior High School can get away with saying in front of the teacher. I think it’s way past time for people to grow up; and so that’s my take on this ignorant issue.