News recently dropped of former Christian author Jen Hatmaker’s pending divorce from her husband. It’s tragic, and until such a time as she or her husband make public statements about the issues in their relationship, it profits no one to speculate or comment, other than to mourn the dissolution of another family unit.
Reading initial stories about the divorce led me back into some of Hatmaker’s more recent posts and comments, something I had distanced myself from for quite some time. I wish I had stayed away.
Anyone who has watched the slow descent of author Jen Hatmaker into a church-abusing provocateur probably wasn’t surprised to read her recent, bizarre Facebook post on suffering (language warning):
I remember shortly after the United Methodist Church voted to continue holding to God’s view of human sexuality for their moral standard rather than embracing the culturally-pervasive spirit of the age, Hatmaker took to this same Facebook page to pen a love letter to her “dear young gaybies, beloved by Jesus.”
At that time, Hatmaker blasted the church of Jesus for believing that those who embrace an LGBT identity are created incapable of “great holiness.” It was a lie from the pit of Hell. As I wrote at the time:
Literally no one that I have heard speak out against open homosexuality being embraced amongst those in pastoral or leadership roles would suggest that the individual embracing homosexual sin is any less loved by Jesus or any less wanted and capable of holiness than the individual embracing any other sin.
Every last one of us is incapable of holiness in and of ourselves. Only when we confess, repent, and receive the Holy Spirit of God in our lives can He start bringing us towards holiness. One who repents of homosexual sin is just as capable of that as one who repents of idolatry.
What struck me at the time, and what strikes me again is why someone like Hatmaker, who is so infatuated with gaining earthly audiences and inviting the thunderous applause of men that she willfully invents her own religion, is so stubborn in her desire to rebrand her humanist idolatry as Christianity.
If she wasn’t, this wouldn’t be a column worth writing. If she wasn’t, her Facebook meanderings would be indistinguishable from, and no more noteworthy than, the vast majority of posts made by the world for the world. But Hatmaker is intent not only on identifying herself as a Christian, but misleading whoever will pay attention to her that her mind is a better barometer for real faith than the teachings of Christ’s church.
That’s what draws my ire, and what is so deserving of uninhibited rebuke. Eschewing the command to not let unwholesome talk come out of our mouths, intentionally distorting biblical analogies of God’s loving provision to advocate a pagan “God as Mother” narrative, encouraging others in grief to “fling every curse word toward the heavens because Jesus has a high tolerance for the F word,” is not the counsel of Christianity. Cursing God and dying was the foolish advice of Job’s wife, after all. Job was righteous for his stubbornness in repeating a different refrain: may the name of the Lord be praised.
I see nothing praiseworthy escaping from the keyboard of Hatmaker. I don’t see a mind that has been transformed, a heart that has avoided conformity, a commitment to walking humbly with God, a spirit committed to defending and building up Christ’s bride, or an attitude that submits and offers itself to Jesus and His ways.
That is the better path – not just for Jen Hatmaker, but for all of us. That an author once regarded as a Christian writer apparently disagrees, is what should cause the greatest grief of all.
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