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Aug 02, 2012

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Ron Phillips, Sr.

Peter,

When I saw the article in The Christian Post I immediately thought: Kettle meet pot!

I see that SBC Voices does not list your blog feed anymore or even list your site in their blog roll. Not very unifying much less giving a "Voice" to those within the SBC that don't tow the line of the 2nd VP of the SBC (and maybe the VP of Lifeway?? just maybe??)

If our 2nd VP is going to delete your blog feed on Voices, it makes one wonder what IS going on behind closed doors within our SBC institutions and leadership.

Though his deletion of Harriette's comments on his blog was probably more egregious and heavy handed (as she is the nicest and kindest blogger in the SBC), it is clear that our 2nd VP seems intent on not being open, fair and representative of a large number of Southern Baptists.

Blessings,

Ron P.

Lydia

Yes, this is the "redefining" of sin so many of us have been concerned about for a long time. You will see tons of rationalizations as to why Merritt can teach and preach and you will be called a sinner/gossip, etc for daring to speak, link, blog on it (must be approved first) or even link to a public piece on it!!! As we all know, the pew sitters have no right to know about those teaching them. How silly of us. The leaders, those we pay, will tell us what to think.

Setzer might want to stop "branding" himself for a while as an entity employee (yes, it is independent but with SBC oversight.

Setzer has only proved he plays the game well. And SBC Voices sold out to Setzer and the ingroup since the Gospel Project wine and dine. No credibility. Classic game playing.

Lydia

One more thing...when guys like Setzer are so obviously biased and you think of all the YRR coming out of our seminaries who have revered Driscoll, Mahaney, Mohler, Setzer and other "branded" icons, can we not see how absolutely confusing the understanding of truth must be by these young men? Good is evil and evil is good. The minutiea of doctrine being more important than people. They have massive cognative dissonance which is obvious when engaging them. They have very little ability to reason and seem to be developmentally emotionally arrested and we are giving them money, position and power over people.

Ron Phillips, Sr.

Peter,

Did anyone at SBC Voices let you know that you feed and blog has been censored?

It's rather ironic isn't it? Hundreds of thousands rally to support Chick-Fil-A and Dan Cathy's support of traditional marriage as well as freedom of religion and freedom of speech. Yet the 2nd VP of the SBC and SBC Voices editor which touts itself as the a [sic] website designed to track just about everything Southern Baptists are talking about online doesn't want to include feeds from this site nor even list your blog. A site that is and has been the leading SBC website for non-Calvinists since 2006.

How Baptist is that?

So it begs the question: Why is the 2nd VP of the SBC censoring your feed on SBC Voices? Is it your non-Calvinism? I doubt it, but it makes one wonder if that didn't play some part in the decision.

Is it your recent posts on Jonathan Merritt? If that is the reason, then in order to be consistent, he MUST remove Ed Stetzer's feed and blog as well.

SBC Voices needs to stop claiming to be an aggregate of Southern Baptists blogs or they need to restore your feed and blog listing.

Blessings,

Ron P.

Jeremy Crowder

I agree with Peter and others pot calling kettle black. Also I find it seriously wrong to speculate about serious criminal actions of the sort of evil that has hurt many instutions. To me we Christians should take allegations seriously but not jump to conclusions. We have Penn State on one hand but we also have Duke Lacrosse on the other. We just don't know until it goes to court and the facts can be looked at. My hope is the Pastor of that Church has no victims or less victims than is reported and that people will pray to God for any victims that the truth will come out for them not for bloggers etc.

peter lumpkins

Hey Ron.

Well, I think we got our answer about my blog’s disappearance from SBC Voices given the current post by Dave Miller on “nuking the frig”. From Google Analytics, it seems my blog was expunged from SBC Voices on July 25th (the day after my post on JM's exposure about his tragic moral breach). Interestingly, I emailed both the editor and owner of the site wondering if there was a “feed” malfunction (it’s happened before) but no genuine response came. The owner failed to respond at all while the editor generically offered an initial, “I have not discussed it with Tony since I got back in the country. I have no details.” After I inquired again, his final words were, “If I get any info, I will share it with you.”  I’m supposing he changed his mind and decided he’d share it with the internet world. At least, that’s the sense I get from his latest post. Consequently, the words “if I get any info, I will share” appear, at least on the surface, to ring sorta hollow in my view.

My response to this is two-fold (I may tease this out more fully in a main post later):

a) I will continue writing precisely as I have in the past…criticizing precisely as I have in the past…offering commentary on issues that interest me (and I believe millions of Southern Baptists like me) precisely as I have in the past. I possess no intention to change just because someone (or even the majority for that matter) objects to either my content or my style of literary presentation. I always seek to the best of my ability to deal with people’s words and/or actions not with people’s hearts, motives, or intentions. The best critics do this and it becomes Christian critics to even more practice this principle.

Nor will I stand down because people think I’m either irrelevant or unworthy to speak my view in the open market of ideas. From my way of looking at it, to do so would constitute forfeiting my Baptist conscience, something a thousand such threats or condemnations from fellow believers will not accomplish

b) while I have been and remain a vocal advocate for blog owners to be in absolute control of their respective blogs, this principle must be tempered, so to speak, when we’re looking at a blog which advertises itself as representing an entire slice of denominational demographics. Voices unapologetically states

“[SBC Voices] is unofficial source for news and opinion about the Southern Baptist Convention… . You can help SBC Voices by letting others know about this resources. I am always looking to add more blogs to the index, so if you know of a Southern Baptist blogger or news feed that is not listed just email me at Tony@SBCvoices.com… . SBC Voices tracks Southern Baptist blogs by state and other categories. If you know of any Southern Baptist blogger not listed please email Tony@sbcvoices.com” (//link)  

Last I checked I was both a Southern Baptist and serve a church which is Southern Baptist. Regardless of whether SBC Voices agrees with my content, style, opinion, or theology, I remain Southern Baptist nonetheless.

Moreover, to imply this blog is just about “unfairly” criticizing Christian leaders produces the biggest guffaw of all. While I take no prisoners when it comes to offering critiques toward even my own spiritual kinsmen, a large portion of my site is dedicated to offering historical witness to our majoritarian heritage as Southern Baptists. But a cursory glance through the archives demonstrates this beyond dispute.

Truth be told, what really seems to peeve many is, I dare criticize their darling heroes. And, to those who question my critiques, I encourage rigorous dissent. But to just insist I sit down and remain quiet is not and never will be a doable response so far as I am concerned. I may sit some situations out quietly. But I and my conscience will decide, not a group of like-minded bloggers. And, the public will also judge whether I'm relevant and/or worthy to be heard, not a unilateral pronouncement from a self-appointed blog authority.

So, in short, if I may be so bold, they can stick that in their pipe and smoke it.   

Even so, checking the actual “refers” I get from SBC Voices in google analytics, the best I can tell is, I’ve averaged about 200-+ page views per month as a result of their possessing my RSS feed in their aggregator, or about 50 per week. Now, don’t get me wrong; I’ve appreciated the traffic. Thank you, SBC Voices!

Nonetheless, I ‘m not going to lose much sleep on their decision to unplug my cord from their socket. When comparing the 200+- refers per month they contribute to the 40,000-50,000 page views per month I average, one easily can understand why I’m not going to be pouting crocodile tears anytime soon. The lion’s share of my traffic comes from direct links to my RSS feed (by-passing SBC Voices) and google search.

Hence, in the end, while I may lose traffic, and even become a relatively unknown blogger among Southern Baptists in the near or not so near future, I’m afraid it apparently won’t be because SBC Voices cut the power to my microphone.

I will not remain silent. And I will not stand down.

Thanks, Ron.  And Lord bless.

With that, I am…

Peter

p.s. It needs stating that Miller's post did not actually name me in it. Instead all the factors are circumstantial in nature. In addition, Miller's post represents the quintessential model of bad criticism because he leaves the reader wondering about precisely what (and consequently, whom) he refers. It's sort of a fill-in-the-blank criticism which in the end is nothing more than a safe way to log a personal gripe about certain people one does not like all the while leaving himself/herself full deniability in case the thing backfires. That's precisely why I routinely link to those I do criticize so the reading public can make up their own mind as to whether or not my criticism is valid. In my view, more confusion not to mention needless speculation comes from Miller's approach because, in essence, we have no way of knowing if what he speaks jives with what he's criticizing. He can say anything he wishes about the one he's criticizing. No informed rebuttal is even possible much less justified. But if examples are mentioned, uncheckable deniability can be summoned.

Randall Cofield

Everyone needs to lay off the scandal-mongering. It is unbecoming to those who name the name of Christ.

Soli Deo Gloria

peter lumpkins

Randall,

"Everyone needs" according to whom? Please refrain from logging your sermonettes on this site.

With that, I am...
Peter

Christian

Go to SBC Voices and request that Peter's blog be returned. I have. Let them know how you feel. Let's see if they are "Christian".

Randall Cofield

Peter,

"Everyone needs" according to whom?


Le 19:16 You shall not go about [as] a talebearer among your people; nor shall you take a stand against the life of your neighbor: I [am] the LORD.

1Pe 4:15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or [as] a thief, or [as] an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men’s matters.

Soli Deo Gloria

Jared Moore

Peter, I don't know why you were removed from SBC Voices, but I assume it has to do with the rumor you spread about Jonathan Merritt. You had no proof Merritt committed homosexuality other than the evidence-less statement of Merritt's accuser. Just because you neither confirmed or denied the allegations doesn't mean you are free in Christ to spread the rumor. You spread a rumor; you gossiped.

Why couldn't you wait until there was proof Jonathan Merritt had sinned before you wrote your article? Do you really think it's godly to spread a rumor?

Max

talebearer: rakiyl (Hebrew), "a traveling scandal-monger"

busybody: allotriepiskopos (Greek), "a vagabond meddler"

In my estimation, Peter is neither a peddler of scandal or meddler on the move. He is staying put at his keyboard communicating truth to those who need to know it in Southern Baptist ranks. He does so with a necessary edge in his writing to get our attention.

peter lumpkins

Jared,

Unfortunately, you seem to have a habit coming here, Jared, only to take issue on the most baseless points. Honestly, I don't even know why I bother to respond. Even so, let me try.

You specifically describe my post as nothing more a "rumor I spread about Jonathan Merritt." However, "rumors" are normally considered stories without foundation or lacking any substantial evidence for their existence. My post definitively does not fit what we normally mean by "rumor." I cited my source--a source that not only seemed credible at the time--but actually was proved credible. Moreover, the claim I cited was not a "rumor". Rather, it was a public claim by not only a purported eye-witness of Merritt's action, but also an actual participant in his folly.

For my part, Jared, this is why I hold little regard for critics like yourself. You charge in, make blanket accusations without thinking carefully through what you write, all the while happy and confident within that you've just delivered a death-blow to the one you've criticized.

Please: when you return--if you return--think before you press "post."

With that, I am...
Peter

peter lumpkins

Randall,

How stupid of me. I see. You speak for God. If you say, "Everyone needs" that means God says, "Everyone needs." Got it!

With that, I am...
Peter

Jared Moore

Peter, so, if another man claims publicly to have a sexual relationship with you, and this person claims to have proof of this (even though he doesn't provide it at this time), I can spread this man's claims about you, so long as I neither confirm or deny what he claims?

peter lumpkins

If you have good reason to believe this man is credible, then unfortunately for me, that may be an option. I made it clear, Jared, and you know this, that I wouldn't have given the piece the time of day had it been from just anybody. So please don't frame the issue in this way.

With that, I am...
Peter

Lydia

"It needs stating that Miller's post did not actually name me in it. Instead all the factors are circumstantial in nature. In addition, Miller's post represents the quintessential model of bad criticism because he leaves the reader wondering about precisely what (and consequently, whom) he refers."

Thank you! It is bad form and cowardly but typical of how Voices operates. I cannot tell you how some companies tried the "blanket and vague" policies that only made things worse. It seems there are segments of the SBC who are not thinkers at all. It does not foster trust at all. Better to know exactly what and whom if one is going to make any point that brings change or stands on truth.

SBCVoices has long been inconsistent. Some people like that as long as it fits their ideology. But it is not trustworthy because ideology can change depending on who the hero is this year.

Lydia

Jared,

You keep proving, in writing, why you are not mature enough to pastor anyone. This cannot be a "rumor" because there is a FIRST party PUBLIC accusation. And then we have Merritt himself giving some creedance to it AFTER it came out. He should have removed himself from any teaching or public position in ministry AFTER "it" happened to work out his sin. But no, he is an up and coming celeb and Christianity is his platform for it.

Lydia

"Everyone needs to lay off the scandal-mongering. It is unbecoming to those who name the name of Christ"

Yes, it is much better to hide the sin if they are celebrities and their jobs are dependent on tithes. It is a bigger sin to speak of it call for honesty and repentence. Best we haver ignorant pew sitters who suppport the sinning with their tithes. The REAL sin is speaking of the sin.

We get it, Randall. You fit in well with them. Makes me wonder.....

Jared Moore

Lydia, your timetable is off. Lumpkins reported the accusations prior to any evidence being provided. The person who sinned with Merritt made a claim and said he had evidence, but he hadn't provided the evidence and Merritt hadn't confessed. Yet, Peter reported the accusation even though it hadn't been substantiated. Thus, I think Lumpkins spread a rumor. It seems whoever controls the blogroll at SBC Voices agrees, since Peter's blog is no longer listed (Although, I wouldn't rule out that it's a glitch).

peter lumpkins

Jared,

Unless you're prepared to defend your nonsense about rumor, I suggest you drop your failed point. The one whom I linked to turned out to be a credible witness just like he appeared to come across. Your gasping contrarily makes no sense Jared. Either show how it's non sequitur to publicize not only what appears to be a credible person's claim but also a person who actually was credible or back off. Don't make the accusation again unless you can demonstrate I quoted a bad source. Clear enough?

With that, I am...
Peter

Jared Moore

Peter, why did it "appear" to be credible? He didn't list the evidence. He only claimed to have the evidence. You didn't know if what he claimed was true or not, yet you shared it with the disclaimer that you couldn't confirm or deny it. You couldn't confirm or deny it because no evidence was provided. I don't understand how you can redefine the definition of "rumor."

peter lumpkins

Look, Jared, my post and comment thread gave clarity as to my reasoning. Hence, I feel no obligation to repeat that here solely for your sake. If you want to know, check out the comment thread and read the original post carefully.

As for "redefining" rumor, sweet heavens, man! You're the one coming here suggesting I passed on a story without foundation whatsoever (i.e. a rumor) which is demonstrably false. In fact it was proven to be true! Yet you nonetheless mindlessly continue to proceed as if it had no basis in reality when even the one accused admitted it was true! What a double Georgia hoot!

Now Jared, I'm through with this. Unless you've got a legitimate point make, I'll bid you a good week end.

With that, I am...
Peter

Lydia

"Lydia, your timetable is off. Lumpkins reported the accusations prior to any evidence being provided. The person who sinned with Merritt made a claim and said he had evidence, but he hadn't provided the evidence and Merritt hadn't confessed. Yet, Peter reported the accusation even though it hadn't been substantiated. Thus, I think Lumpkins spread a rumor. It seems whoever controls the blogroll at SBC Voices agrees, since Peter's blog is no longer listed (Although, I wouldn't rule out that it's a glitch)."

Jared, you need to get out of your bubble. Your training and mentors have not taught you how to think. You speak of "evidence" in this matter. Exactly what TYPE of evidence would you accept? Pics of Merritt having sex? Yet you won't accept Merritt's own words that substantiate an encounter?

Merritt has already admitted inappropriate behavior:

On Ed Stetzer’s blog, Jonathan Merritt now confesses:


“In 2009, I was contacted by the blogger in response to an article I wrote about just that--that Christians must love people who experience sexual brokenness. We corresponded several times by email and text for a couple of weeks, some of them inappropriate. When I was traveling through a city near him, we met for dinner because we'd corresponded so recently. As we were saying goodbye, we had physical contact that went beyond the bounds of friendship. I was overcome with guilt, knowing I had put myself in an unwise situation. We never saw each other again and we ceased contact after a period of time.”

YET, he did not step down from any ministry position and continued to advance his new career as a Christian celebrity in the same cause!

If Merritt himself is not enough PROOF for you, then we have a problem: You are not a thinker and should not be engaged or considered credible. Please get out of ministry, Jared. We have enough young guys who are star struck as it is.

Lydia

IF I had not seen this so much in the seeker celebrity world, I probably would not believe it. But it goes on all the time. The person who brings up the scandal (PUBLIC!!!!) is the one targeted as the real sinner. But the celebrity who has tried to hide it, did not come clean or step down gets caught, admits to "something" and is considered the real Christian. EVen though he was all too happy to take people's money and be a celebrity UNTIL he got caught.

There is something wrong with this picture. Yep. It is coddling evil. For ONCE in my life, I would love to see a Christian celebrity come clean BEFORE he gets caught. OUr responses actually coddle and enable more sin! You are actually protected by the powers to be if you are a celeb even though you hid it and got caught then only admit it when caught!

Christians have become the non thinkers. But I have come to expect this behavior out of those who are making Christianity their career ladder to celebrity.

Jared Moore

Lydia, I haven't said a thing about Merritt or what he's done. He's obviously guilty, and he's publicly repented. What I was speaking of was Peter's post that shared unsubstantiated accusations. These accusations were later substantiated, but they weren't at the time of Peter's original post. That's all I said.

I'm not "star struck" over Merritt. "Please get out of ministry" is a pretty harsh statement.

Lydia

Jared, the only reason Merritt came clean (otherwise I should believe the Holy Spirit was on vacation from him the last 3 years and kept him from stepping down?) about an "encounter that went beyonds the bounds of friendship" is because it IS credible. He knows it and his response is damage control. (Been there, done that, seen it way too many times to count)

Do you hate gay people so much you think they could never tell the truth? My guess is that Merritt has been pressured to come out himself and consistently refused so it was done for him.

But I think we should trot out Mohler's words concerning the SBC lying and homophobia again just to be sure.

peter lumpkins

Lydia,

If it were not so tragic, I assure we could really have a good laugh. Think for a moment what guys like Jared would have done to me had Azariah Southworth turned out to be a phony and Jonathan Merritt had the goods to expose him. I would have been trampled to death by a herd of wild steers.

Nonetheless, even when Southworth is demonstrated to be credible and Merritt openly admits it, here comes rough and tough Jared running ahead of the bulls huffing and snorting as if I passed on a rumor which was not a rumor but an actual fact.

Talk about Monty Python's Flying Circus!

But there's more. Ed Stetzer gets on his tweet and passes along stuff he reads on the internet--while some is obviously shamefully true, no evidence exists all of it is--without blinking an eye. Yet Jared comes here and snorts at me as a rumormonger while his celebrity buddy Ed can post anything he wishes with impunity. For him, it's all legit. For me, it's shameful and rumormongering.

What a funny funny people we've become.

With that, I am...
Peter

Jared Moore

Lydia, you're replying to things I didn't say . . . ?

Lydia

"Lydia, I haven't said a thing about Merritt or what he's done. He's obviously guilty, and he's publicly repented."

AFTER he was outed! And why haven't you said anything? Why haven't you questioned why he took pew sitter money for that long and did not step down? And let us not forget his causes celebre' during this time. He has sought to be a wannabe celebrity Christian and many of our leaders have gone along with him.

" What I was speaking of was Peter's post that shared unsubstantiated accusations. These accusations were later substantiated, but they weren't at the time of Peter's original post. That's all I said."

Why? Why did you feel the need to target Peter when you have a celebrity Christian promoted and protected who was living a lie?

"I'm not "star struck" over Merritt. "Please get out of ministry" is a pretty harsh statement."

And I mean it. You are not qualified. I fear for the pew sitters. And I base that on reading you over at Voices for quite a few years. What scares me is the SBC is funding churches for more guys like you. Get a real job in the real world and try your "prove it" every 5 minutes. Let us see how long you last.

peter lumpkins

Jared,

Stop this drivelling nonsense. The statements were true. They were definitively, demonstratively not rumors. You cannot dismiss that as if it doesn't matter. Southworth was not making it up. He was a credible witness. No matter how much you attempt to dismiss that, you cannot dismiss the truth. He was a credible witness when I wrote what I wrote and he was demonstrated a credible witness after I wrote what I wrote. I was vindicated, Jared. Don't you get that? Vindicated. So please quit making a virtual donkey out of yourself.

With that, I am...
Peter

peter lumpkins

Lydia,

What I find most interesting about guys like Jared is, they rarely, if ever, show up here to talk theology, question ideas, or offer studied opinions on the matters I might log or spawned from the comment thread. Instead, they show up only to blame, accuse and indict me personally. In other words, they show up to complain. That's it. Truth be told, I've never in my 59 years encountered a more whiny-butt community than the young Calvinists associated with the YRR. I know that sounds like a generalization--perhaps an unfair one. But I mean it literally. They rarely display any standard canons of criticism. Instead, they whine...and then whine some more.

And, when they can't whine because I may really have been wrong about something or got a source mixed up or some such, they even whine like Jared did about something I actually had right! They make passing along truth into passing along rumor!

It's really sad. I feel for the generation they will mentor--at least if there comes no reformation to their ranks.

With that, I am...
Peter

Lydia

"Lydia, you're replying to things I didn't say . . . ?"

Jared, you debate like a 13 year old boy because you are not a thinker. And many times what one DOES NOT SAY about the OBVIOUS, speaks the loudest. Learn to think, man.

Lydia

"What a funny funny people we've become."

Actually, I would say "what an unthinking people we have become". And when it comes from our self annointed "branded" leaders it is deadly. It spreads to the young'uns going into churches and it is a disaster waiting to happen. I see the roots of tyranny all over it: Cherry picking what is sin and what isn't based upon ideology.

Pol Pot would be proud.

Lydia

"I've never in my 59 years encountered a more whiny-butt community than the young Calvinists associated with the YRR. I know that sounds like a generalization--perhaps an unfair one. But I mean it literally. They rarely display any standard canons of criticism. Instead, they whine...and then whine some more."

People may wonder why I am so outspoken on these things. Because I LIVE at ground zero and have seen this "entitlement" mentality from the YRR for years. They are wrecking havoc on the sheep. And I would never even begin to think I can change them. It would take a road to Damascus to do that. My focus in other venues are the pew sitters. Get out. Run away from them. Stop supporting them. Make them get real jobs in the real world. They are NOT pastor material. They have been indoctrinated,told they are special and have the only truth. They do not hear themselves or recognize their problem because they are incapable of it. In ministry, Arrogance is bad enough. Ignorance is bad enough but when you combine the two, disaster is the result.

We gave Mohler way too much power, too young, and now we are reaping what we sowed. And we see the cycle continuing as we fund church plants for these young inexperienced minds who have not been mentored properly or spent any time in the real trenches.

bigfatdrummer

Great piece again Peter...I really enjoy reading the word art that you provide to those who just don't seem to get it! LOL! I am heading to the Calvinism Conference tomorrow here in KY, you coming up?

Max

Peter - I sincerely appreciate the "whiny-butt" descriptor you provided for young Calvinists who creep in and out of the blogosphere with "show me", "prove it", etc. Perhaps we should all now refer to these folks as YRRWBs. I would be laughing now if it weren't for grieving as I consider the tremendous generational influence New Calvinists are having on Southern Baptist youth.

Speaking of nasty descriptors, SBC's new 2nd VP has chastised one of our brothers by name for writing "hate-filled missives" in the comment stream over at Between the Times http://betweenthetimes.com/index.php/2012/08/02/is-southeastern-part-of-a-calvinist-plot-my-response-to-les-puryear/

BigFatDrummer - don't let anything get on you at that conference.

Mary

Ed Stetzer seems to have proven two things here and it's #1 - the SBC elites will defend their own even at any cost and #2 we're seeing this PCiefication of sins. Sexual sin between a young girl and Pastor is ok to "gossip" about especially if said Pastor is no one the elites have decided to circle the wagons around. Homosexual sin is something we're supposed to tiptoe around and call for compassion and kindness and pretty much ignore especially if the sinner has a connection to the SBC elite.

But the hypocrisy by Stetzer is astounding to see so soon after he tried to spiritually shame people into silence which has become a prime weapon for the elite. You just may not be Christian if you're not following the edicts of the elites.

Max, notice how Danny Akin is actively deceiving people into thinking he's not really a Calvinist - the letter that matters is the U, Akin knows this. Akin also fails to explain that unless you agree wih Calvinist on U, you cannot be on staff at Southeastern Seminary because of the Abstract of Principles. This is the elites strategy - claim that 4 pointers are not really Calvinists and try to distract and make any dissent look delusional all the while they know if they explained that they all agree on U and what they mean by that and that they are excluding people who don't agree with them - then they would have to actually have to start having a real conversation. Akin's "response" shows he does not want a conversation but will continue to intentionally deceive - I wonder why? I hope someone points out how Akin is not being completely upfront when he claims he's not really a Calvinist. He's behaving in exactly the same stealth manner as Calvinists he try to stealthly take over churches. He knows he has information that would influence opinions but he withholds that information because the poor wittle peasants couldn't really understand what he's saying. It's pure intentional deception on the part of Akin. He knows what the hubbub is about but will intentional not tell you the information you need to know.

And yeah, of course, just because a witness was proven credible, doesn't mean he was a credible witness. Basically, you're supposed to shut up ....because that's why.

Rick Patrick

Peter,

Thank you for breaking the story about the Jonathan Merritt sex scandal. I read about it here first, although it was later confirmed through many other websites. Your sources were accurate. Your tone was firm, but not mean-spirited. You told the truth. Upon further investigation, Merritt himself confirmed everything you said.

Ironically, he was praised as a hero for his courage. No, courage would have been confessing his sin publicly when it was committed years ago. If you only confess once you have been caught, you may get credit for delayed honesty, but not courage. He only came forward because he had to do so.

I disagree both with much of Jonathan's theology and with the majority of his philosophy of cultural engagement. I hope he receives the counseling he needs and is someday restored to his ministry. However, we do him no favors to pretend he has not fallen. If he seeks to move forward as though nothing happened, I believe that would be a mistake.

Lydia

Mary, ONe of the biggest problems in this entire debate is understanding what is really happening because it is not as clear cut as it might seem. I have mentioned before that one is a Calvinist (1-5 pts) when it is convenient and not, when it is not convenient. It depends on the audience at the time. That is how deceptive many of them are.

This whole issue is more about ecclesiology for the power brokers than it is about anything. (Shh. The youngens do not realize this as they are the troops being rallied with the Calvin banner). And I have seen it up close and personal with some power brokering and stealth in taking over churches.

When one wants to have power one needs an issue to rally the troops around. That is how tyranny works. Inerrancy is out. So what next? Calvinism: "We have real truth". "Return to our roots", etc. You gotta have something to excite the youngens and not so wise middle agers....to go to battle or at least be fellow travellors.

So.....Why would Bryant Wright push an end run around the messengers for a name change committee? Why would supposed non Calvinists on the GCR task force agree to lock up information when they promised transparency for the GCR? None of that happened because they were all Calvinists. Even some Non Calvinists love top down control.

This is about the Nicolaitans mentioned in Revelation. Conquerors of the people. Leaders who want followers after themselves. Calvinism is one legit already existing way to get there.

This is more about power brokers and who is going to win control. And many are sticking their fingers in the wind to see which way it is going to blow.

Calvinism is a perfect platform for such power brokering. It is hierarchical in its foundation. Total Depravity as they define is perfect for convincing the followers they are incompetent without the special annointed ones to lead them and tell them what to think. (This is the neo Platonic part and what Calvin believed)

And the best part: When people think you are this special annointed leader, then you can redefine sin for everyone.

Lydia

http://thepedestrianchristian.blogspot.com/

Seems you are not alone, Peter, in seeing the inconsistency of Ed Setzer positions on Schaap and Merritt

Mary

Poor Ed Stetzer, doesn't seem to like being shown to be full of hypocrisy.

Says Ed at PRAVDA (everybody starting to understand the PRAVDA thingy now?)

"People are growing weary of those who only seek to stir up strife and say, “look at me, I am standing against something or someone– again and again.”

We must not forget that the Southern Baptist Convention spoke this year and rejected such contentious people– again."

What an interesting insulting comment. Exactly which vote was the vote where the SBC "rejected such contentious people again?" And even if a vote was say 60/40 does Ed mean to imply that those 40% were voting for contentious people for the sake of voting for contentious people. Do the 40% mean nothing? They should just sit down and shut up because Ed and the elites were successful in getting votes against "contentious people" What happened to all this nonsense about the votes being "votes for unity - not against anyone."

The elites are starting their campaign to marginalize voices of dissent. You see it with Akin's spin and claim that he's really not a Calvinists and his acting as if he has no idea why people think there's a problem. You see it with PRAVDA further silencing dissent - probably at the behest of the elites.

The only conversation about the issues in the SBC is the elites telling the peasants to sit down and shut up otherwise they will come after you and start trying to use spiritual abuse tactics.

Lydia

What is interesting is how they get to define what is contentious and what isn't. There are no more contentious people in the SBC than the YRR. Of course, the influencers of the YRR like Driscoll (who has trained Acts 29 pastors of churches we have funded) or Mahaney the blackmailer are not contentious according to Ed? And of course, Mohler's words concerning the Trad document were not contentious according to Ed? Nor were his words on the GC video. See how that works? Those who define, win. And since Ed has used other people's money and resources to "brand" himself, he is on the team for defining.

Mary

Lydia, contentious is easy to define. It's disagreeing with Ed and PRAVDA. It's disagreeing with the official Party line. If not for the "contentious" peasants who are contending with their betters there would be no problems in the SBC.

We need a "Newspeak" dictionary for the elite in the SBC.

4 Point Calvinists are not really Calvinists at all, ignore their stance on the U.

Contentious is anybody who disagrees with PRAVDA's daily propaganda for the Party.

Gossip is speaking about happenings reported in public places in an unapproved by the Party manner

hate-filled missives are words of dissent against Party members

........

Mary

Lydia, here's another thought on this making up your own definitions.

Founder's is a movement to "reform" the SBC. They have taken concrete actions to push for the "reformation" of the SBC for close to 30 years now. When Dave Miller is confronted with this he does this stupid mealy mouth "I don't think they really mean that anymore. They've toned down the rhetoric." Rhetoric! Founder's have actively pursued reformation of the SBC but their actions that have been going on for years gets dwindled down to just words. As if Founder's is just blog!

So OK if they don't really mean to "reform" the SBC where have they repented of their past actions? Where has Tom Ascol issued an apology for causing such strife and division?

Being Calvinist means never having to say your sorry.

peter lumpkins

Lydia

That's a great link and worth a read for sure. It may even be material for a main post!

With that, I am...
Peter

P.S. Nice to see you back, Mary!

With that, I am...
\Peter

Lydia

I just read Setzer's comment over at Voices and am astonished even more.

They have been listening to Mahaney and Driscoll too long who ran cults. We are not a cult. At least I did not think we were. Who do these guys think they are that they can make such vague statements and not be questioned as to specifics? This is a cowardly leadership. This is intimidation and an attempt at censorship using vague accusations. What? We are to be afraid some will think us contentious if we do not communicate as they deem correct? I would have to actually respect them first to even consider it.

Mohler declares that some are going to be marginalized. Setzer calls some people somewhere contentious and says we voted against them once before. Who are they talking about? Man up and say so.

What on earth? Power has gone to their heads. They have lived in the leadership bubble too long and are imitating Mahaney and Driscoll. And the lemmings just hang on every word. What they don't get is that eventually it will be them. That is how the cycle of power corrupts.

Christopher Bullard

A growing number of Calvinist are Greatly concerned with Stetzer(Emergent leanings).Ed Stetzer: We traditional Calvinist are talking and we want you out of LifeWay. We are seeing a Calvinism that we cannot support in some areas of Church doctrine of some men you support. Calvinism is more than just a soteriology. I have noticed for a few years a leaning toward the Passion " Guys " and now "Girls" . We traditional Calvinist reject the Passion Conferences....we see compromise. We support Steve Lawson, John MacAruthur, Sam Waldron, Dever, Sproul, Ferguson, Derek Thomas, Tom Nettles, and Roy Hargrave. These are men who need to be and continue to be put in front of the younger generation of Baptist. We have lost totally confidence in you Ed .
We also reject the Traditional Statement and the theology of Brad Whitt, Peter Lumpkins, Emir Caner and gang. However, we actually have more confidence in them on some church doctrine than you Ed. Why are we promoting Beth Moore at LifeWay Ed ? She just preached on Sunday morning for Passion City Church whose pastor leads the Passion Conf. May we see a rise of Traditional Baptist Calvinist rather than what we are seeing now.

Mary

"Who do these guys think they are that they can make such vague statements and not be questioned as to specifics"

Lydia, you know if a Trad made this statement the usual suspects would be swarming all over Pravda right now DEMANDING the names, phone #'s, addresses, and mother's maided name of the exactly who the person was talking about. PROVE IT! PROVE IT! PROVE IT! Of course Stetzer also made a recent comment about Calvinists who have an agenda to reform the SBC and that got crickets - we know every Trad who makes that claim gets deemed a liar and/or delusional. It's called PRAVDA for a reason.

Peter, my daughter and I were enjoying a nice breeze in Chicago on Thurs while those around us were complaining about the heat - it was 92, but having become accustomed to triple digit temps back home we thought it was comfortable!

I doubt very seriously Stetzer comes back and gives an answer to the question of what vote and who are the contentious people voted against. And if he claims it's the "Unity Resolution" we need to remember at the time the author of the "Unity Resolution" was running around blogs calling people semi-Pelegian heretics and stating that the SBC needed to have a discussion as to whether there was actually room in the SBC for such semi-Pelegian heretics. When a Calvinist plays the "Unity" card he actually means those who dissent from Calvinism and the elites need to sit down and shut up since they're reallY just heretics and may only barely be saved.

Lydia

Christopher, I was wondering when the liberal leanings of the NC movement would be noticed by some Calvinists in the SBC. Look closely--some of your hero's are turning a blind eye to some of the nefarious actions of the NC. Wonder why?

Driscoll started out emergent (cussing pastor in Blue Like Jazz) and Mahaney, the "Apostle" from the shepherding cult, People of Destiny. Did you ever think the staid Mohler would be promoting an "Apostle" where prophecy mics/tongues/slain in the spirit like Toronto Blessing were SOP? While just a few years back we booted folks for having a private prayer language? Now Mahaney is moving SGM to Louisville and planting a church near the seminary. Why? We can't fill the churches we have now.

You cannot make this stuff up. I don't have a problem with Beth Moore preaching because of her gender but I do have a problem mostly with what Beth Moore teaches. The last time I paid attention to her she massacred Hebrews with this idea it was teaching "self" confidence. She is a shallow pop star like most of them. And she would be hurt by your problem. AFter all, she has "spiritual covering" from the male authorities to teach. Whatever that means.

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