“Hell–or evil or sin, the various names it’s called in the Bible–is something that humans have created” — Tim Mackie, creator of The Bible Project (9:35 in video).
This morning we discovered The Bible Project. We watched the teaching about the prophet Ezekiel. It was so well done, so clear in its graphics and explanation, that we were bowled over. So bowled over that the link was sent out to others.
We were pretty excited. But after doing some research, we realized The Bible Project should not be recommended–rather should people be warned. Mackie’s claim (given on his podcast) that “humans have created” hell is not the worst of it.
[Southern Baptist] Pastor Gabe Hughes notes that, “It’s Tim Mackie who is distorting the doctrine of the atonement.” Like the author of The Shack, and so many others these days, Mackie gobbledegooks understanding about the atonement.
[For example.] "Propitiation: The act of appeasing the wrath of God.” [*Definition of propitiation taken from video.]
"For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus, whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed (Romans:3:23-25).
"Therefore, He had to be made like His brethren in all things, so that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people" (Hebrews2:17).
"And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world" (1 John:2:2).
"In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins" (1 John:4:10).
As Pastor Hughes makes clear, The Bible Project, despite many wonderful videos, is not to be recommended. Omit propitiation and you have a different doctrine of the atonement. A different atonement means a different Jesus.
For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Christ Jesus. (1 Corinthians:3:11)
[TBC: The Bible Project explains the atonement in their video “Sacrifice and Atonement”. Tim Mackie, the main narrator and theological overseer of the project, states that Jesus’ death had two functions. First, His death “covered the debt that humans owe God for contributing to all of the evil and death in His world.” Further, it provided purification for sin, in that Jesus’ blood is “a symbol of his life having this ability to wash away the vandalism that evil has caused in and around us so we can now live at peace with God.”
Technically, these two points are true. Jesus speaks of “debt” in talking about God’s forgiveness in the parable of the unmerciful servant (Matt:18:21-35). Also, Jesus corrected Simon the Pharisee, after Simon disapproved of Jesus’ feet being washed and anointed by a “sinful” woman (Luke:7:36-50). Scripture further says that the blood of Jesus “cleanses us from all sin” (1John:1:7).