Trevin Wax|5:08 pm CT

Live-Blog Notes from The Elephant Room Conference

Today in Chicago, seven pastors gathered together to participate in blunt conversations about their different approaches to ministry. No keynotes. No canned messages. These are “the conversations you never thought you’d hear.” Audio and video is not yet available, but there have been several people live-blogging the event.

Luke MacDonald provides some general observations. Here is James MacDonald’s take.

Below are quick rundowns of each session. I’ll be updating this page as more become available. At the bottom, I’ve included my 12 favorite tweets from the #elephantroom Twitter feed.

Session 1: Preaching to Build the Attendance vs. Preaching to Build the Attendees
- Matt Chandler & Steven Furtick
Summary & Quotes from Chris Vacher and Jake Johnson

Session 2: Culture in the Church vs. Church in the Culture
- Mark Driscoll & Perry Noble
Summary & Quotes from Chris Vacher and Jake Johnson

Session 3: Compassion Amplifies the Gospel vs. Compassion Distorts the Gospel
- Greg Laurie & David Platt
Summary & Quotes from Chris Vacher and Jake Johnson

Session 4: Unity: Can’t We All Get Along? vs. Discernment: My Way or the Highway
- Steven Furtick & James MacDonald
Summary & Quotes from Chris Vacher and Jake Johnson

Session 5: Multi-Site: Personality Cult vs. God’s Greater Glory
- Perry Noble & Matt Chandler
Summary and Quotes from Chris Vacher and Jake Johnson

Session 6: Money?
- David Platt & James MacDonald
Summary and Quotes from Jake Johnson

Session 7: Love the Gospel vs. Share the Gospel
- Greg Laurie & Mark Driscoll
Summary and Quotes from Chris Vacher and Jake Johnson

Conclusion: Lightning Roundtable
Summary and Quotes from Jake Johnson


12. James MacDonald: Churches have “selfish shepherds, shallow services, and starving sheep.”

11. Matt Chandler: “Depth is not the enemy of conversion.”

10. Steven Furtick: ”It’s easy to say, “shoot the wolf” until people start calling you the wolf.”

9. People are fake online, not more honest. We decided it doesn’t work. - Perry Noble on internet campus churches

8. James MacDonald: “God’s plan A is humility, God’s plan B is humiliation….to be proud is to pick a fight with God.”

7. David Platt: ”When your wages rise, don’t raise your standard of living, raise your standard of giving.”

6. DashHouse: Loving #elephantroom but I’m very uncomfortable with our fascination with celebrity pastors

5. Mark Driscoll: “It’s a Shepherd’s job to be unloving towards the wolves, OUT OF LOVE for the sheep.”

4. James MacDonald: “If you want only enough of Christ to save yourself, then you probably don’t have enough to do even that.”

3. Greg Laurie: If a church doesnt evangelize, it will fossilize.

2. David Platt: ”I think the best way to reach people is to exalt the glory of God.”

1. Mark Driscoll to Steve Furtick: “You like listening to Piper and Osteen? That’s like saying I’m a meat eating vegetarian.”

Categories: Conferences

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  1. This sounds awesome! Any chance at audio links?

  2. This conference could spawn another chapter in your Counterfeit Gospels… the “rock start” gospel…

  3. Hey Trevin – thanks for the links to my notes. The event was great – solid content, great presentation, engaging style. I loved it.

    Not uptight about details – Vacher, not Vachar :)

  4. Good stuff – I had the privilege of being at the live campus. Best one-day conference I have attended.

    One note — the humility/humiliation (#8) quote was by Driscoll not MacDonald.

  5. Trevin,
    Thanks for the info and the links. Good to be able to read and keep up with this from another country.

  6. [...] Trevin Wax has some links to notes and a summary of his favorite tweets from the day. Chris from Canada was taking notes most of the day. You can also check out the tweets marked with the #ElephantRoom hashtag. [...]

  7. Thanks for this.

    Anybody know whether they will be made available for download?

  8. [...] Summaries to the Elephant Room discussions that took place yesterday. Pastors: If every person in your church led someone to Christ as much as you, how would that look? – James MacDonald [...]

  9. [...] notes on the Elephant Room, check out this blog.  I found Jake Johnson’s notes under each session to be easiest to read. Posted by [...]

  10. [...] — several of them actually — at the appropriately titled Elephant Room Conference. Trevin Wax does a subject-by-subject set of links to two other bloggers, Canada’s Chris Vacher and [...]

  11. [...] methodological, theological, and practical issues related to church ministry. (See notes here.) One of the most interesting sessions was David Platt and James MacDonald’s conversation on [...]

  12. I really hope that after all the dates are done, they would release some links of audio at least. A lot of interesting dialogues going on.

  13. [...] I won’t delve into the specifics of each and every conversation but instead will present my broad brush-stroke thoughts on the day as a whole.  For those who desire a more complete summary, Trevin Max put together a great resource with links to summaries of the individual sessions.  You can find that here. [...]

  14. My one concern about such a conference is that the presence and kindness of faithful pastors like Chandler, Laurie and Platt might seem to lend credibility to men like Furtick and Noble.

  15. [...] Link here to an index Trevin Wax provided of participants who live-blogged the event. Leave a Comment LikeBe the first to like this post.Leave a Comment » [...]

  16. [...] featured eight conversations between seven pastors. (I collected some blog notes from each session here as well as various clips at the Elephant Room [...]

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