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Laodicean Report

Disturbing and sad. Reading the blogs put out by these Calvinists produces the same feeling one gets when reading the debates of Calvin and the records of the Consistory: oppression and fear.
Truth is immortal.


"Is not even our tarnished testimony among non-Christians enough to motivate us to make a public outcry against cyber-bullying of any sort toward any person for any reason? Is the moral conscience of the largest evangelical denomination in the United States nothing more than an empty hull?"

Most spend more time exonerating, excusing, defending or even ignoring horrible behavior. For me, it tells me who they really are and tells me they are unhealthy and unsafe.

And I include in that folks who are very aware and who blog about all sorts of things and chose to stay silent for whatever reason or they chose to exonerate Hall immediately and some even gave him a platform to do so. It looked like PR to me as JD seemed to only obtain a "conscience" when the tide of public opinion produced a groundswell.

The game employed by JD Hall and his followers was to pretend that dots did not connect, could not connect, were impossible to connect. You know, I often think these guys are so in their little bubbles, they think that can make people believe anything and have all sorts of tactics to make that happen. I wish the bloggers who gave him a platform would have waited at least a year or so. I think that would have been wiser but it would not have helped JD's PR. But it would have been more honest for both.

I am disgusted by pastors who used their influence to influence other bloggers into immediately exonerating JD Hall by giving him a platform. Because many of us knew the tactics employed over long periods... we knew it would only be a matter of hiding behind others and using other social media outlets to exonerate himself. Now he can point to them.

Can we blame anyone looking on who says, If this is what Christians are like, no thanks? Not only is the cyber bullying horrible but so is the cheap grace offered up on platters by so many that came after.

As I have found out over the last few years is that SBC churches in my neck of the woods are not safe places. They are full of intrigues, deception, stealth maneuvers, immature, poorly educated, inexperienced and narcissistic young leaders, etc.

The YRR SBTS guy now preaching in my last church did not have 100% of the vote (which we were told by another guru, voting is not the Holy Spirit) and cannot seem to live with this fact of life even though he is making a ton of
money at age 32 to only preach. NO pastoring. What an easy gig as I recognize most of his stuff as regurgitated Piper.

Anywhoo, he now gives updates to the youth (why youth?) every month on who has been "converted" to him. I kid you not.

The inherent narcissism and manipulation in that movement is insidious. And there are thousands of them out there. JD and his minions are simply one more obnoxious and dangerous variety.

In my neck of the woods, I find I am constantly compelled to say to folks: But that is not anything like Jesus. Don't blame Him. We all have free will and many will use Jesus for their own personal devices. Read the Gospels and see the real Jesus.


Southern Baptists need to erect a "human shield" from the likes of Hall and Dunn! As indicated by Ms. Shannon's perspective, "pastors" like these have made Christianity a byword and reproach.


"The YRR SBTS guy now preaching in my last church did not have 100% of the vote ..."

Lydia - interesting that you should note this. The 30-something YRR "pastor" preaching in my last church worked his magic in the following manner: (1) he lied to the pastor search committee regarding his theological persuasion, (2) he promptly attempted to move church governance from congregational polity to elder rule, (3) when that vote failed, he recruited like-minded folks from other area reformed works and took the matter back to the church for vote, (4) with sufficient "yes" votes from new reformed members, the issue passed, (5) he then moved quickly to put elders in place (all in their 20s-30s), (6) reformed theology preaching/teaching emerged, (7) the church split, (8) the young whippersnapper took over a long-established "traditional" SBC work in our area, nice building and all, (9) the guy has moved on to work his magic in another city, leaving behind heart-broken former members who established another church in the area, (10) one of his reformed elders was elevated to pastor.

I wonder who taught these guys to do that? Planting a new church is certainly an easier row to hoe than destroying a work that is already in place. And I wonder what the mental health expert cited in this article would think about such tactics? It's certainly driving me crazy!

dr. james willingham

Dear Peter: I don't know what J.D. Hall has written since he penned his confession, but I went back and read the report on how he had turned from such conduct. Seems he was suffering from being too full of himself. God calls us to preach the Gospel as He gives us to understand the Gospel. While we might have the responsibility to warn an erring individual, we have to be exceedingly careful how we do such a thing or not do it at all lest we do harm. I think all preachers go through such a period, but they eventually learn some wisdom. Some folks do not realize that words not fitly spoken are like the hard floor on which a beautiful vase is shattered. A fellow visiting one of the famous Wedgewood factories back in the 1800s (so I understood)used language inappropriate in modest conversation. A little later, the guide handed him a beautiful vase that had just been produced. As he handed the fellow the vase, he let it slip and it shattered on the factory floor. Then the man said, "Your use of words can have that effect upon others (and in this case he might have been speaking of a child in the group)." That object lesson is a warning to ministers That only God has the wisdom, power and love necessary to handle the task of transforming a person, in other words, making the crooked stick straight. We do not have that power, and it is well that we do not. We need the wisdom to know that we do not have the power nor the wisdom nor the love adequate to the task. It is only with a sense of fear and trembling that we should ever make efforts in that direction. Perhaps, it will help, if Brother Hall learns from this experience, one too costly and painful for so many. In this case, he added to the misery of those suffering. Having suffered the loss of four members of my family as a result of three murders and a suicide in 1972, I have some idea of the grief involved. While I do not know the response of the Lord to my prayer, I made a point of remembering Dr. Caner and his family in prayer.

Craig Daliessio

I'm so sad from all this. Too saddened to even be angry anymore. There's enough evil in the world without these people being evil in the name of Jesus. I've never been one to question a man's salvation, not if he knew what salvation meant and how it is received. But with this crew I do. I hate it, but I do. I just don't see any way...no matter how I squint...that I can reconcile the viciousness of their souls with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.


Brother Craig - You have accurately described my own emotions and concerns with certain corners of the New Calvinism movement. The attitudes these young men display are not Spiritual gifts. I, too, am concerned about their eternal destiny. Indeed, my primary concern with the theological rift in SBC ranks is that most folks are writing it off as men just fussing over teachings and tradition ... without realizing the Spiritual battle we are in. All I can say is that there is either (1) a great new plan of God for Southern Baptists on the other side of this mess, or (2) this once-great evangelistic denomination has run its course.

Craig Daliessio

Hear hear Max

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