Tony Jones’ fascinating exchange with Chris Rosebrough

Questions That Haunt ChristianityEmergent leader Tony Jones has had a busy, blasphemous week. Monday, he wrote a blog piece calling on Christian leaders to join him in relaxing our moral uppityness over fornication and adultery.  Yesterday, he outright denied the atoning sacrifice of the cross, and what Jesus did to pay for our sins.

Today in his blog titled, The Cross Is Not Necessary [Questions That Haunt], Jones answered a letter from his reader:

You’re asking if God required Jesus’ death. The short answer is No.

No, Jesus’ death was not required in order for human beings to be reconciled to God.

Sometimes enough is enough, and even the most patient of apologists must stand up to the outright lies Jones has been spreading to his vast audience. That’s what Fighting for the Faith’s Chris Rosebrough did in the comments section of Jones’ article. What happened when Chris shared the truth of God’s breathed-out Word? Jone’s erased those words of truth.

Here is that exchange:


Chris Rosebrough (@piratechristian) says:


What is your source for these claims of yours? Is it your own mind and your own theological speculations? I don’t see you citing a single Biblical passage that backs up any of your assertions. Therefore, these ideas of yours are not Christian doctrine nor do they represent Christian Theology.

I remember your more overt postmodern days where you and others in the emergent movement would talk about having a ‘humble hermeneutic’. You’ve apparently moved on from that because what you say here is not at all based in hermeneutics, no Biblical passages are quoted or referenced. I’d argue that you’re now engaging in ‘arrogant assertions’ and have the hubris to think that you’re ideas and speculations are the seat of Christian doctrine and theology. Seriously, when you made these assertions were you speaking ex cathedra?

I get that you’re sharing your beliefs and your ideas on your blog. But why on earth should I think for a moment that your beliefs and your ideas are true or have any bearing on true Christian doctrine? I can’t think of any. We’re both human beings and have the exact same limitations.

Here’s is what the God-Breathed (θεόπνευστος) Word of God says on this matter:

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Chris, I have deleted all of the Bible verses that you’ve cut and pasted from elsewhere. You are free to come and troll here on my blog, but you cannot copy-and-paste from elsewhere. We can all read the Bible for ourselves. Also, prepare to be ignored. Those of us to spend time on this blog daily have changed a lot since your last visit. We don’t really argue with trolls anymore.]

Since, God’s Word says that Jesus’ death on the cross was a propitiation for our sins and that without out the shedding of blood there is NO forgiveness of sins and that those who do not trust Christ for the forgiveness of their sins remain under the wrath of God…Ergo, Christ’s death on the cross was absolutely necessary to reconcile us to God as 2 Corinthians 5:18–21 says “[DELETED]

IF you’ve got something MORE authoritative than the God-Breathed Word of God then produce it. One thing is certain, your theological musings have ZERO authority when it comes to deciding what is true Christian doctrine and theology. And since your musings are directly contradicted by God’s Word, its clear that you are in deep deep error.

Chris Rosebrough (@piratechristian) says:


Since when did posting Biblical passages in your meta become a practice that was banned and forbidden and equated with trolling? I posted them in order that the conversation would be able to continue without requiring people to leave conversation and go look up what the passages say. I find that practice to be rude and inconsiderate.

That being said, I think you’ve made my point by deleting the Bible verses. It’s clear that you don’t what God’s Word to get in the way of your theological assertions. Forgive me for confusing you with facts and not recognizing that your mind is already made up and you’re not going to allow YOUR theology to be corrected by God’s Word.

I do not recognize your authority to craft and create Christian theology and dogma.

Tony Jones says:  It’s not the Bible that gets deleted. It’s the copy-paste technique. No one asked for your recognition. In fact, your endorsement would be an embarrassment.

Tony,  I assure you that I will never embarrass you by recognizing your authority to craft and create Christian Theology and dogma. But, what should embarrass you is that you actually believe that you possess that authority. Yet, nothing could be further from the truth.
Jay Bakker says:  
Chris, Have you ever studied the history of the canon? Would you agree that the Bible is a flawed collection of writings?

Thanks Jay Bakker for that last comment. Last week, Jay also publicly denied the atonement in an interview in the Christian Post.

Chris has kindly shared with me the Scripture verses that Tony deleted:

“My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world. And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected.” (1 John 2:1–5)

“without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.” (Hebrews 9:22)

“Thus it was necessary for the copies of the heavenly things to be purified with these rites, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. For Christ has entered, not into holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true things, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf. Nor was it to offer himself repeatedly, as the high priest enters the holy places every year with blood not his own, for then he would have had to suffer repeatedly since the foundation of the world. But as it is, he has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.” (Hebrews 9:23–28)

“Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.” (John 3:36)

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28 Responses to Tony Jones’ fascinating exchange with Chris Rosebrough

  1. I don't even know what to say to this. I read the whole post and a ton of the comments. What a cluster. It seems so littered with nonsense. I thought Chris' comments were well organized and open for dialogue. The replies were just weird. It's like trying to have a rational convo with a crazy person. (But I guess we know that already.) Wow!


  2. Juliette says:

    Wow I can not believe that someone who claims to be a christian and a teacher also, that he would actually say those types of things out loud. Is he not afraid of God. the Bible says the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. So I guess Jesus died for NOTHING??? This Tony Jones guy might as well just throw his bible right in the garbage. I feel kind of sorry for him. I think that a lot of church leaders are more concerned about being poliically correct and they seem to want to be iikeable and cool to the youth especially because they are an easy target with all the stresses life is giving them in this day and age. Well we really need to pray for the people out there that are hearing this garbage and ask God to give us the right words to speak to warn people of this nonsense. Churches are becoming social clubs and gathering places for fun. This is really really bad. Wow is right.


  3. Mr. Jamie Lee Rake says:

    That sentence about Jones' busy and blasphemous week is a startling, eye-grabbing way to open this piece. Not so great, at least for his eternal being, is Jones' utter arrogance and the gall he has to call what he espouses Christianity in any shape or form.

    On a related note, I recall Mike saying on the radio show this morning that Jones is the third person he has felt the conviction to deem a heretic. I've heard him say, and read in his book, of Brian McLaren being one for his asinine assertion that Christ's crucifixion's tantamount to divine child abuse, so who's the other party in that unholy triad of the h-word? Sorry it's not coming to mind, but the nominees for that dishonor seem ample to my reckoning.

    (on a related note to that, I can't be the only one curious about Mike's email exchange with McLaren that he'd mentioned on SUFTI recently, can I?)


  4. Joshua S. says:

    If Chris Rosebrough is a troll, then let me be named among the trolls. The man is sound in his understanding of Scripture and church history.


  5. Rose Vosburgh says:

    Tony Jones and his Emergent friends like Jay Bakker have 'changed the truth of God into a lie' (Romans 1:24). I believe that they have gone too far now and God has given them over to reprobate minds. They are veering completely away from the true gospel….changing it to what THEY want it to be with no regard at all to what God has revealed in His Word.. even being offended now at Chris's 'audacity' to quote a few verses for their consideration.. At one time, they were at least civil to those were disagreed with them, allowing some friendly dialogue on occasion. That is all changing now. Bet they will be first in line to persecute true Christians as the days grow darker. They will even think they are doing God a service. The way Chris Rosebrough was treated is just a sign of things to come with this group, I think. We are being marginalized now by the world that hates us and by the many false converts who being led by vicious wolves in sheep's clothing….like one Mr.Tony Jones.


  6. Lisa Stevens says:

    What a shocking load of fertilizer! Worse. Fertilizer is good for something. I can't for the life of me understand why Tony Jones, Jay Bakker and their ilk insist on cloaking themselves with name "Christian," when they despise everything about Him. They would be more honest to come up with their own name: Formulators Of Nonsensical Ideas Nebulous Unscriptural Twisted Stupidity (FONI NUTS) is one suggestion.


  7. SallyVee says:

    This is amazing. We seem to be witnessing the crossing of one theological red line after another, in ever more blatant ways. I sense some desperation on the part of the delusional libs and emergents. But then again, there might be so many deluded, postmodern souls out there, that Tony Jones knows he can say anything he wants and the masses will remain clueless and imprisoned by false teaching. I pray that this is not the case and that many eyes will be opened via this posting.

    Pay attention, believers! It's a brave new world out there and we need to stay grounded and prepared for whatever may come.

    Stand Up for the Truth daily program is one way to stay grounded (thank you Mike & Amy). Get it podcasted and be sure to listen and tell your friends. Let me also recommend these excellent podcasts for those seeking Biblical truth and sober instruction:

    Fighting for the Faith (Chris Rosebrough):

    Issues, Etc. (Lutheran Public Broadcasting):

    Law & Gospel (Pastor Tom Baker – my favorite Bible teacher):

    White Horse Inn (modern Reformation):

    all of the above can be found in the iTunes store for podcasting


  8. SallyVee says:

    Oh good grief. I had to check the comments at Tony Jones's blog. He is very engaged in the conversation, no doubt loving the attention. Check out this comment… if this isn't a prime example of postmodern non-think I don't know what is:

    February 27, 2013 at 11:30 am
    Tony Jones says:

    [SNIP] Regarding human bipolar categories like “truth vs. liar,” I think that God subsumes all such categories, thereby rendering them nonsensical when talking about God.


    • Karen Janssen says:

      HUH??? exactly what did Tony Jones SAY in the above quote? Does it make any sense to anyone?


      • Rose Vosburgh says:

        I had to look up the meaning of 'subsumes' to try and make some sense of Jone's comment. Subsume means…'to swallow up or merge into something else'. So…what is the man saying here? I guess he means that, to God, truth and falsehood are just catagories that merge and turn into something else? His God doesn't clearly define truth and lies. His God simply doesn't get all bent out of shape over such piddlely things. Truth….Lies….who cares! Just love and accept everybody…right?

        God says just the opposite, but since Jones devalues Scripture, he won't care for these verses:

        Sanctify them by Thy TRUTH: Thy Word is TRUTH. John 17:17

        Jesus saith unto him: I am the way, the TRUTH and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. John 14:6

        Even the Spirit of TRUTH: whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him: but ye know Him: for He dwelleth with you and shall be in you.John 14:17

        I am sure I could find many more verses to prove that God DOES care a great deal about truth, In fact, Scripture says God will not tolerate lying lips…they are an abomination to Him. Scripture even goes so far as to say that all liars will have their place in the Lake of Fire. Doesn't sound like there is any 'subsuming' going on with God, now does it?….just saying.


  9. TL says:

    This is like the faintest swirls in a low pressure system that becomes a cyclone. I felt sick to my stomach as I read Jones's comments, as I did last week when I read Jay Bakker's interview Christian Post. But, that ill feeling is a mere momentary irritation compared to the painful assaults we are about to endure. Take courage, brothers and sisters, in the One who is hated most of all and whose love for us drove Him to sacrifice His Son for us.


  10. Harry says:

    Thank you my Jesus..
    Because of your perfect sacrifice i stand in God's presence without sin because it is not my righteousness but yours.
    The only way is through the blood of Jesus, without it I am naked, ashamed and God's righteous judgement rests on me.


  11. Marie says:

    .Perhaps we are calling out a camel out of the needle's eye. I often wonder if those who profess so much truth ever speak out against the pagan holidays of the church, namely Christmas and easter (Ishtar). It seems to me that if the institutional church would throw out these pagan celebrations that are NOT commanded by Jesus to celebrate, then perhaps we can get back to the one true faith through Jesus Christ, and Him alone. Many of our so called scholars with their degrees of vanity, their BA's, BS's, Masters and PHD's are taught in their institutional seminaries that these celebrations are pagan, then turn around and teach us sheep a flat out pagan lie. This is just unbelievable to me as a follower of Jesus Christ, how a church system can lie to its people, then turn around and criticize another "pastor." Perhaps both camps listed above need to repent and turn from sin just like the rest of us. Judgment begins in the house of the LORD, is this not what God, our Father hath spoken?


  12. Marie says:

    Hello SallyVee,
    I really like your name and your picture is lovely. I guess I am not as accomplished on the computer as my beautiful children are and I'm okay with that as they enjoy "educating" their mother on the finer points of technology. My husband and I have spent our whole lives teachings our children the Glorious Words from our Bibles as God, the Holy Spirit, guides us. Thankfully, as parents, and followers of our LORD Jesus Christ, the Living God who came to earth in the flesh….the very same flesh as you and I, SallyVee, to live, to teach, and to humbly shed His Blood for our wretched, pitiful sins; there is no greater love than this. To fully understand how much God, our Father, could even love us to the point of sending His One and Only Begotten Son, to die for our sins is the greatest mystery of mercy and grace that even man can fully comprehend. I love the Word of God and the teachings of Jesus, the Christ.

    I have done extensive research on cults and the new age movement as I believe they have converged with nominal evangelical Christianity. Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses have been clearly identified as cults, although now are being welcomed and embraced by Protestantism. But perhaps there is even a more sinister cult that is leading men astray, and that is the made up doctrines of men and women who believe what the Nicolatian church system tells them without testing the spirits to see if what they preach is the truth of God Himself.

    God is calling out a people unto Himself, His ecclesia, or called out ones, and unfortunately, most of them cannot be found in the harlot religious church system instituted by man. Jesus said, "My burdens are light." Man says, "I will place more burdens on you and you must prove that you are a follower by your church membership, your church attendance, how much masonic money you give us, and we will monitor your beliefs and your coming and going as we have rule over you. This is our will for you, ooops, we mean "the will of God" for you. The church system of today is not God's system and was never meant to be so.


  13. Neil says:

    Deleting Bible verses?! Wow, what a concession speech. The good news is that Jones got too warm and took off the sheep's clothing. Now he is an unapologetic, open wolf and is unveiled for all to see. Great work on Chris' part!


  14. Mr Davis says:

    I have to agree with Marie, I too have great sorrow. You see faith is a gift of God, repentance is a gift of God, salvation is a gift of God. Ephesians 2:1-10. If this man thought he had faith, it wasn't faith that produced fruit following in accordance with repentance. Such fruit that results from obedience out of love for God and His righteousness, a love where we die to our self will, our flesh and live according to the Spirit of God. John 15:1-10.

    This man needs the bride of Christ, the body of Christ, to plead in prayer to The Father with pure hearts, repentant hearts, for this mans salvation and who knows maybe God would grant him repentance unto salvation. I pray also some may speak to him about sin, about the righteousness of God, the coming judgement whereby all things will be laid bare being tested for their quality. John 16:8

    Also stated above already how can we think we have no fault ourselves. Are we not broken over our own sin (willful disobedience) or have we arrived that we no longer sin. If you believe the later who gave you authority to change the Holy standard from God's righteousness to a profane standard based on man's reasoning.


  15. ChurchSalt says:

    At what point does contending for the faith becoming throwing pearls before swine? At some point, those given over to their sin must be abandoned. Is Jones, Bakker and their colleagues at that point?

    "Ephraim is joined to idols, leave him alone…" Hosea 4:17


  16. Julie says:

    I was married to him. All I can say is God help him.


  17. Julie says:

    He wasn't always like this….he lost his way.


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