Calvinist Leader Dr Iain Campbell Dies By Suicide Amidst Allegations of Affairs and an Out of Wedlock Child. His Wife Gets Blamed!

“ Well, there were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded-Diana, Princess of Wales” ― Cathy Lowne, Speeches That Changed The World link

Special thanks to Todd Wilhelm who alerted me to this story. My rant about this story is at the end of the post. Whatever you do, do not skip the video at the end. You will laugh all weekend. Don't forget to turn your clocks ahead this weekend if you are in the US.

Dr Iain D Campbell: Who was he thought to be?

Who was Dr Iain Campbell? That is a question that many people are asking these days. The Mortification of Spin, mourning the death of Campbell, posted a link to his obituary. When this obituary was written in January 2017, the circumstances surrounding his death were not widely known. Campbell was revered within the tight knit Calvinist circles. Was he one of those Calvinistas? I have no idea but I do know that a number of those within The Gospel Coalition circles were dismayed at his passing. 

Here are some excerpts from his known biography at the time this was written.

He could have adorned pulpits in the largest cities in the world,’ writes Dr. Geoff Thomas of Aberystwyth, ‘or become a professor in an American seminary, but he valued the community which nourished and nurtured him, and he shared their values.’  To that community (Isle of Lewis in Scotland) he dedicated his life, and from it he drew the strength that supported his wider ministry.

…Iain D. Campbell was a brilliant communicator, in constant demand as a lecturer and conference-speaker.  He had a quite extraordinary fluency of speech, but the fluency was disciplined by clarity, precision and careful arrangement.  The delivery was effortless, though often passionate, the mastery of the subject complete, and while there was no trace of arrogance he spoke with the Bible-derived authority of a true preacher. 

…But he was also a master of the written word, as his many publications show, and the Free Church recognised this by appointing him Editor of its magazine, the Record, not only once, but twice.  He was still serving in this capacity at the time of his death,

…Iain D would have risen to eminence in any profession (and once toyed with the idea of becoming an SNP candidate for the Scottish Parliament), but he chose the Christian ministry, and in that chosen field he became a giant. 

He was transparent regarding his piety?

Focus carefully on the assumptions of this next paragraph and think about the term *transparent piety." It has long been an axiom at TWW that we cannot truly know what goes on behind closed doors and we must be careful not to think that we do. As we will see from this story, no one really knew him. Recently, in the Barnabas Piper situation I had people write me that claimed they knew him. One said he was *authentic.* i would assume that is an adjective that would have been applied to Campbell.

… Thanks to the marvels of modern technology these sermons were heard all over the world and within hours of his death an American pastor was writing, ‘I never met or heard Dr Campbell in the flesh, but I knew him from sermon audios, and the sermons I heard told me all that I needed to know of the man. The reason for his high reputation was obvious.  He was a man of transparent piety, for whom the Bible and the God of the Bible was a Being with whom he was familiar.  The Bible irradiated everything he said, and every application he made of Biblical truth seemed so searching and personal, even though he did not know those whom he addressed.  He knew men’s deepest needs and he addressed them with gentleness and compassion as one who felt for them, and wanted them to have the comfort of Christian peace.  His death is a loss, not only to his immediate family and to the congregations he pastored, but to the wider church across the world.’

Was Campbell, a private man, truly a hero to his family?

When this obituary was written, it had been revealed that he committed suicide. However, in the first days after his death, suicide was not mentioned. There is real truth in this next statement although the author had no idea just how right he was at the time.

  Yet, for all the consummate ease with which he presented himself in public, he was a very private man who seldom shared his feelings, and he exuded such an aura of calm competence that none of us thought to ask, ‘Are you OK?’ 

In the meantime, we have a duty of care to Iain’s wife, Anne; to his mother, Lily; to his sons, Iain and Stephen; to his daughter Emily; and to his sisters, Margaret and Alma.  He was their hero.  May they do him proud.

It really gets me irritated when websites suddenly delete a post, like this one at Reformation 21, with no explanation. They are covering up something.

They, too, posted a obituary for Campbell. Guess what? It went up and then was taken down. It appears they didn't have the guts to tell their readership what really happened with Dr Campbell. Whenever you see that happen in Calvinista circles, you can be sure that something really, really bad happened and they are embarrassed to talk about it because heroes are to be worshipped and never dissed.

I believe this response comes from an uncomfortable truth. Calvinists claim that you are *free to obey.* But some of their celebrities do not seem to be very obedient. So they must hide their sin and pretend that all is well.

Now, if you click on that link, you get:

The Revered Dr Iain Campbell is alleged, by the testimony of his wife, to have had 7 affairs and fathered an out of wedlock child!

The Herald (Scotland) reported the following in Free Church in 'complete shock' after claims minister Reverend Dr Iain D Campbell had seven affairs:

It has been claimed the 53-year-old father-of-three who was minister at the Point Free Church on the Isle of Lewis, took his own life after his wife Anne, 54, discovered the illicit relationships.

…Mr Robertson said the Church would investigate the claims about Mr Campbell, also a former Moderator, at presbytery level and that pastoral care would be given to those affected in the congregation.

He said: "The Church in the Western Isles will do what they can to help support the family."Local congregations are where the pastoral care will primarily take place. "Any investigation will take place at a presbytery level in the Western Isles."

There is an accusation that he also fathered a child out of wedlock.

According to the Herald Scotland

It is also claimed that Mr Campbell, a father of three and Free Church of Scotland minister at the Point Free Church on the Isle of Lewis, fathered a child outside his marriage.

These alleged claims go back as far as the 1990s.

The Herald Scotland also reported on the time line of the affairs.

It is also understood allegations could date as far back as the 1990s.

Dr Campbell committed suicide after allegedly being confronted by his wife about his double life.

Dr Campbell was determined to take his life. This was not a simple cry for help.

It is important to understand that Campbell attempted to suicide when confronted by his wife by taking a bunch of pills. He was revived at a local hospital where it is reported that he then successfully committed suicide by hanging himself in the hospital.

It would seem that the hospital will need to up  their suicide prevention precautions. He had already attempted suicide once. Why was he left alone? That hospital rushed him to another hospital in Glasgow but it was too late. This was reported here.

After first taking an overdose, he hanged himself in hospital in Stornoway. He died later in Glasgow.

The suicide occurred immediately after his wife confronted him about the affairs and a possible out of wedlock child.

“It is said Anne (his wife) was suspicious about Iain’s activities, and confronted him at the manse [vicarage] allegedly after finding compromising emails in his computer trash files,” another local source told the paper.

His widow, Anne, has asked the Free Church of Scotland to investigate and throw out the involved women.

His widow, Anne, wants the alleged paramours kicked out of the church and she is naming names.

An article in the Sun titled CHURCH SEX CLAIMS: Married reverend found hanged is accused of having SEVEN mistresses – and his wife ‘wants them kicked out of the church’ found the following:

Today, allegations have emerged that his 54-year-old wife Anne has called on seven women to be kicked out of the church for adultery.It’s after she allegedly discovered evidence that her husband had been leading a double life for years.

The Free Church of Scotland, also known as the Wee Frees, has launched an investigation into the allegations while the accused mistresses are believed to have called in the lawyers

…“Anne is wanting all this to go in front of a church court and for them to throw them out of the church for adultery. “It will cause havoc with their marriages and the entire Free Church.”

The Sun reports that an investigation has begun.

A spokesman for the Free Church of Scotland said: “We can confirm that the Free Church of Scotland is investigating allegations made in connection with the late Rev Dr Iain D Campbell.

The leaders are not sure if these allegations are true and, interestingly, are not sure if they will ever find out the truth.

Could there be a cover up in the works? Apparently the affairs are thought to have been with members of his church. This is on a tiny island in Scotland. It shouldn't be that hard to figure this out. My guess is that Anne is going to push them.

“In terms of where we are at, we would always say anyway that our theology is such that we believe any human being can stumble and fall. "I’m not in any position to make any kind of judgment and I think that’s basically the same for everybody else."

He added: "We will find out if the accusations against him were true or we may not find out.

Sadly, it appears that church folks are now blaming Campbell's widow, Anne, for making him unhappy!

According to the Daily Mail:

'Even though she’s a widow people are saying Iain had a difficult home life and there’s a lot of anger towards her.’

…A source close to senior church figures said: ‘There was never a whisper of a rumour about affairs until after he died – on such a close-knit island they would have been very difficult to keep secret.

The *obedient* church community has snubbed Anne and she has had to flee the island.

This is a disturbing part of the story. Anne, a victim in this tragedy is being snubbed by her church. According to the Scottish Sun:

Anne Campbell, 54, was blamed by locals over the death of Wee Free (ed. Nickname of church) husband Iain, 53, on Lewis.

The churchman’s widow left after a whispering campaign blamed her for airing claims that he was unfaithful to her.

She took leave from her teaching job to escape mounting disapproval over the damage to Reverend Iain Campbell’s reputation.

…A source close to the couple in Stornoway said: “She’s not had much sympathy since it came out.

“Some people bizarrely feel she is in some way to blame for her husband’s behaviour as he was very unhappy.

“The tragedy has taken its toll on her work life — she had to leave.

“Her children are still here on the island but she had to leave with everything that was going on.” The insider said Anne left the Western Isles to stay with friends near Inverness after members of the church — known as the Wee Frees — snubbed her over the scandal.

Guess what? We are being told not to gossip about this!

What a surprise. Obviously TWW is not playing along.

Christian Today published Tragedy in Lewis: A Pastoral Response to inform us how to view this tragedy since we are too stupid to know how to do that appropriately. It has the Calvinista playbook written all over it. The following quotes are from the rather lengthy *response.*

1. Those of you who are looking for 'inside info' or salacious gossip can go look elsewhere. 

2. Weep and pray.

3. Avoid gossip.

4. People say they need to know. Why? Why does anyone, other than those directly involved, need to know?

5. I don't know what happened and I don't want to know. And those of you who claim to 'know' more almost certainly don't.

6. Trust the Church: trust the investigation process

7. Christians who see this as an opportunity to attack the Church and to justify themselves and their own cynicism.

8. (ed. Christians who respond to this) suffer from the same sinful desire to elevate themselves by knocking others down

9. (ed.This is) speculation and salacious mockery 

10. Ministry is hard. And it's often especially hard for the manse family. The pressures and temptations come thick and fast

11. Everyone becomes a self-appointed moralist and expert. The enemies of the Gospel mock – 'Where is your God now?' Or to be more precise, where is your Calvinist theology now? 

Role modeling decades of one alleged affair after another.

 Dr Campbell wrote A Christian's Pocket Guide to Sin: The Disease and Its Cure.

https://www.amazon.com/Christians-Pocket-Guide-Sin-Disease-ebook/dp/B015JK3V7Y/ref=sr_1_sc_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1489172355&sr=8-1-spell&keywords=the+christian%27s+pocketquide+to+sin

Dr Campbell supposedly was a Bible expert as well as an expert on sin and its cure. We are supposed to take his advice since he published this for public consumption. Those of us who are thinking individuals must wonder if Dr Campbell really was an expert on how to take on sin. I agree that he was an expert on sin-we all are. However, his life is a living picture on how he lived out his Christian walk. I am tired of reading *how to* books by Calvinistas who are experts on obedience but role model for us a life that is lacking in that area.

I get that people fall and have an affair. But 7 affairs spread over decades? This is not a one time slip. It is a lifestyle. Sorry. I don't buy it. He preached in public, he admonished us in public and now it is his turn in public. We need to understand why his head knowledge didn't become heart knowledge. If guy like this can't do it, then something is wrong with how he, and others, approach obedience and all of us need to figure it out by looking at situations like this.

My response to the allegations

  • If there is a child, DNA testing will prove an affair.
  • Since Anne has offered evidence, the investigative committee better not blow this off and cover it up.
  • The snotty church folk are snubbing Anne and blaming her for her husband's alleged many affairs? What was Campbell teaching in that church? How despicable!
  • The women, if members of the congregation, are victims of clergy abuse. I suggest that they sue the church for counseling, child support, etc. I bet the insurance company is a bit nervous these days.
  • I wonder if Anne had ever expressed any concerns to the hierarchy before this all occurred? 
  • The investigation should include a financial audit of the church funds to see if any money was paid out to any of the victims of Campbell.
  • A man who can have that many alleged affairs over a long period of time has probably covered up other things as well.This was not a trustworthy man.
  • There could be more than 7 women. These are the ones Anne found out about.
  • Campbell was an abuser of women if these allegations are true.

My response to the Pastoral Response

  • This post is not gossip. It is evaluating the life of a man who may have been leading a double life for decades while being extolled as a great Calvinist teacher. Whatever he taught, it didn't make a difference in his life.
  • Anybody who read anything by Campbell, heard anything by Campbell, or heard about the wonderful ministry of Campbell, has a right to know that the guy may have been a charlatan and abuser of women.
  • Could it be that Campbell used his pastoral ministry as a cover to abuse women? 
  • No one gets to hide behind a curtain of piety. 
  • I have news for pastors. Their job is not more stressful on family life than many others like single moms who work two jobs, doctors, air traffic controllers, intelligence agents, etc. Sorry-Campbell doesn't get a pass for decades of alleged abuse of women because he was stressed *in the manse.*
  • Of course the author doesn't want to know the details. It might cause him to question his paradigm for pastoral ministry or maybe it will cause him to confront something he is hiding in his own life.
  • No, I don't trust the investigative process in many churches. Let me remind everyone of the accusations against Sovereign Grace Ministries. Then there are other churches which have covered up child sex abuse and molestation of women. Other churches which have treated women who are victims of domestic violence like trash, etc. Why should we trust the process? It is being run by sinners who might cover up years of abuse because they are covering up sin in their lives.
  • Yes- I do want to question his Calvinist theology as it is applied in the church and in the lives of leaders. We have been lectured about the freedom to obey and get daily missives of this sin and that. Heck, even loving our dogs can be sinful. It does not appear that a Calvinist theologian was able to overcome his own demons over decades. So, how is Calvinism going to help the rest of us?
  • Yes, I do weep and pray. I weep over victims of clergy abuse, something that was not mentioned in the "Pastoral Response." I weep over a wronged wife who is being snubbed by good, obedient, Calvinist church people, something else that wasn't mentioned.
  • Finally, given the paucity of obedience in this situation and others, I frankly don't care if the author thinks I am being salacious or a gossip. The supposed moral high ground in the Calvinist camp appears to be forgotten when it comes to Calvinist celebrities. They will get passes, investigations will stall, and a wife will be blamed because, after all, it is all about protecting the patriarchy of the pulpit.

My rant is now over. I look forward to your comments this weekend. 

*************

I want to leave you all with one of the funniest videos I have ever seen. It is titled "BBC Interview: Kids Burst Onto Scene And Hilarity Ensues." I bet you will watch it more than once. If BBC removes it, here is a link to it embedded at NPR. Keep your eye on the door in back of the interviewee.

Comments

Calvinist Leader Dr Iain Campbell Dies By Suicide Amidst Allegations of Affairs and an Out of Wedlock Child. His Wife Gets Blamed! — 601 Comments

  1. You realize that the author of the response piece is David Robertson, with whom you’ve tangled before, right?

  2. As a brit, I’ve never heard of Iain Campbell. But Scottish Calvinism is a different world to my own church background, and I live a long way from Scotland.

    Please remember his wife and children at this incredibly difficult time.

    However, it is also right to ask the bigger questions about hypocrisy and abuse in the church. I belong to a more open branch of evangelicalism, one that frequently gets disparaged by the conservatives. But it seems their holier than thou attitude is a load of hogwash and their claims of superiority do not simply stand up to close examination. I think we do well to treat phrases like “transparent piety” with extreme caution.

  3. In the video at the end, I loved watching the mom even more than the kids. Her panic and trying to hide and stay small was hilarious. I could imagine her thinking to herself, “I had ONE JOB!”

    I hope she and her husband were able to laugh at this. I was great, and way better than whatever topic they were trying to cover. It was a gift to the rest of us who needed the laugh this week.

  4. Well this is your lucky day, Dee, because Nick Batzig is a Facebook friend of mine, and I just asked him why Ref21 scrubbed his Iain Campbell obit. Let’s see if he responds, shall we?
    @ dee:

  5. I wonder if Iain and Tullian Tchividjian were friends and shared their how-to-seduce-a-congregant strategies.

    Snark aside, I understand Anne’s anger. She has suffered much and now will have to raise her children without their father and explain these difficult circumstances to her children.

    This man sounds like a predator. The 7 women with whom he had sexual relationships with are also his victims. He used his position of trust inappropriately and harmed women emotionally, spiritually, too. I hope all of the women involved can heal from this tragedy.

  6. I came across Dr. Campbell last year in my research about Calvinism. I read some of his work and ideas and I did not care for him.

    That said, I am sorry to hear that he committed suicide as his “solution” when professional help is available. I feel for his wife, children, and friends.

    I don’t know if I would qualify his relationships with other women as “affairs”. More information is needed. He may have committed clergy sexual abuse and used Undue Influence on these women. I pray for these women and their families too.

    I disagree with his wife’s demands that these women be kicked out of their church(es).
    This case doesn’t seem clear-cut to me. And I would hate for his choices to cause even more harm than the years of harm he has obviously inflicted.

  7. Julie Anne wrote:

    Snark aside, I understand Anne’s anger. She has suffered much and now will have to raise her children without their father and explain these difficult circumstances to her children.
    This man sounds like a predator. The 7 women with whom he had sexual relationships with are also his victims. He used his position of trust inappropriately and harmed women emotionally, spiritually, too. I hope all of the women involved can heal from this tragedy.

    And we mustn’t forget the devastating effect this sort of hypocrisy has on people’s faith. When a church leader that people look up to as a model of virtue turns out to have a dark side, it can cause them to reject God altogether. And it’s even worse when there is a cover-up…

  8. Can’t say I’ve heard of this guy. But having worked in a mental health facility, I can tell you that even with all the precautions in the world, a person bent on suicide is hard to stop. If this guy was respected and revered, and used to living a double life, I’ll bet he could make himself sound plenty rational.

    I have seen that view of the half dome in Yosemite in person and the video at the end was really funny. Even if this man was a philanderer, not sure that laughter was appropriate at the end of the post about his suicide…but…

  9. Dee, I am so glad you pointed out that these ‘relationships’ the wife alleges (I believe her) were not affairs, but rather clergy sex abuse. This distinction is so important. Just this week, a friend who was a victim of clergy sex abuse encountered another former member of that church who said “everyone knows he had an affair.” My friend reminded the person that it was NOT an affair, it was a felony. The person was taken aback..thought my friend was joking. No. It is a felony for the same reasons it is a felony for a therapist to have a go at a patient.

    Thank you for your continued work in exposing, as my mom used to call it, “the dark underbelly of ministry.” My mom, however, thought it should remain in the dark. I’m glad you don’t. Carry on and know we are all praying for you.

  10. I got a kick out of that video! As to the article, I think the powers-that-be in that church are in protecting the brand mode.. Another thing…I am so sick of hearing the word “Biblical,” because of the way it’s been used by this crowd, as well as the wider Christian community, that I don’t use it. The word has been emptied of any significant meaning. How about using words like integrity, honesty and compassionate? These folks value knowledge, i.e. – seminary training & degrees and preaching in the pulpit as the epitome of Christian service and example. And I’m calling malarkey on this kind of ministry being so stressful that it leads to adulterous affairs.

  11. Mara wrote:

    way better than whatever topic they were trying to cover. It was a gift to the rest of us who needed the laugh this week.

    I totally agree. It was the best laugh in a long time.

  12. @ Julie Anne:
    I have a sneaking suspicion that this guy may have more than 7 victims. he may outnumber Tullian.
    Has anyone out there considered that he entered this line of work because he could be in a position of trust? I know people who like theology but are not necessarily committed to the faith.

  13. Velour wrote:

    I disagree with his wife’s demands that these women be kicked out of their church(es).

    She is in a lot of pain and her reaction seems understandable. I wonder if she has gone for help in the past and was blown off?

  14. Jack wrote:

    Even if this man was a philanderer, not sure that laughter was appropriate at the end of the post about his suicide…but…

    I write about so many sad things, I often feel the need to remind the world that there is both sadness and joy in everyday life. I actually thought about that when I posted it.

  15. WOW …. sin on the Isle of Lewis …… a pastor named ‘Campbell’ and seven affairs and a child born from one of them?

    something rings a bell: that small Western Isle off the coast of Scotland’s mainland has a weird religious history:
    in the middle of the last century, the people there were notorious drunks and sinners and ‘cared not for their souls’ according to the legend, and two ladies, elderly Christian sisters, prayed for help from God to come to the island …. well, apparently something DID happen:
    there was an explosive revival with everyone crying and weeping and coming to Church and a minister came from the mainland whose name was ‘Campbell’ (??? relative of the present late pastor??? ) and the hell-raising people of Lewis became very, very faithful, praying and weeping and crying in Church all night,
    and by all accounts, until now, the ‘awakening’ stuck;

    and now there is MORE news ….
    just ‘wow’

    strange wild islands, the Hebrides, beautiful, with an ancient history, standing stones, and the full brunt of the North Atlantic ever present ….

    that something happened (the Lewis Revival) is pretty certain, yes
    but my goodness, I guess the devil will try to get his due and very dramatically also

    those dour, dignified, reserved Scots? … I guess the old pagan DNA will out after all and it will be difficult for the islanders to return to the weaving of tweed after all this excitement

    http://www.notjustnotes.ws/hebridesrevival.htm

  16. Blame the wife for confronting her husband concerning his SEVEN affairs?
    Yep, and church folks wonder many people don’t want to join them for services on Sunday?

  17. And by the way on the Christianity Today” and their points….#6 in particular, Trust the church; trust the investigative process…..
    Isn’t that the same church that gave us a man who had ( allegedly ) 7 affairs?

  18. dee wrote:

    Velour wrote:
    I disagree with his wife’s demands that these women be kicked out of their church(es).
    She is in a lot of pain and her reaction seems understandable. I wonder if she has gone for help in the past and was blown off?

    True, Dee.

  19. “… Thanks to the marvels of modern technology these sermons were heard all over the world and within hours of his death an American pastor was writing, ‘I never met or heard Dr Campbell in the flesh, but I knew him from sermon audios, and the sermons I heard told me all that I needed to know of the man. The reason for his high reputation was obvious. He was a man of transparent piety, for whom the Bible and the God of the Bible was a Being with whom he was familiar.”

    If the people who lead churches believe they know a man because they listen to his sermons . . . . well, that explains the problem in churches today. Foolish men leading people.

  20. “Campbell was revered within the tight knit Calvinist circles. Was he one of those Calvinistas? I have no idea but I do know that a number of those within The Gospel Coalition circles were dismayed at his passing.” (Dee)

    I would place Campbell in the classical Calvinist ranks, not a New Calvinist … of the R.C. Sproul sort, not John Piper. However, whether it be old guard or neo-Cal, there’s just something in the predestined-elect thinking of these folks that allows them wiggle room on moral boundaries.

  21. dee wrote:

    Has anyone out there considered that he entered this line of work because he could be in a position of trust?

    The obituary link in your post provided some perspective along this line:

    “He could have adorned pulpits in the largest cities in the world or become a professor in an American seminary, but he valued the community which nourished and nurtured him, and he shared their values. To that community he dedicated his life, and from it he drew the strength that supported his wider ministry.” (Geoff Thomas)

    “Iain D would have risen to eminence in any profession (and once toyed with the idea of becoming an SNP candidate for the Scottish Parliament), but he chose the Christian ministry, and in that chosen field he became a giant. Yet, for all the consummate ease with which he presented himself in public, he was a very private man who seldom shared his feelings …” (Donald Macleod)

    Church can provide a hiding place where trust and betrayal in pulpit and pew play sinful games. It’s obvious that Ian Campbell’s peers did not really know him.

  22. Max wrote:

    I would place Campbell in the classical Calvinist ranks, not a New Calvinist … of the R.C. Sproul sort, not John Piper. However, whether it be old guard or neo-Cal, there’s just something in the predestined-elect thinking of these folks that allows them wiggle room on moral boundaries.

    I’m going to agree on the first and disagree on the last. I don’t think he’s a Calvinista as you said, but I don’t think (but obviously don’t know) that his Calvinism has anything to do with his alleged sexual activities with women outside his marriage. I think it is more likely something deeper and more personal that was lacking in either his character or his personal development or something. Obviously he was a very troubled soul who has left huge pain in the wake of his suicide, at the very least of it. His widow and his children and his mother and sisters do not deserve what he has done.

    Max, I read your comments and often think I could have written the very words.

  23. Christiane wrote:

    those dour, dignified, reserved Scots? … I guess the old pagan DNA will out after all and it will be difficult for the islanders to return to the weaving of tweed after all this excitement

    I have no idea what you mean by this remark, but it is unkind and uninformed. And off-topic.

  24. From the post: “It has long been an axiom at TWW that we cannot truly know what goes on behind closed doors and we must be careful not to think that we do.”

    True. I worked with a gentleman last year whose wife appeared to have committed suicide. Investigation proved it was staged – murder. Knowing the guy, his wife, his kids, and having been to their home, it does not seem possible.

    What happens with couples – we haven’t a clue. It takes forensics.

    The Christianity Today [post reads: “Christian Today” but I followed the link) advice reminds me of when a church lady friend was seeking pastoral counseling about her ill-mannered (verbally abusive) hubby, who was an elder & generou$ in offering$. The pastor asked her what she was “doing to make him that way”.

  25. Gram3 wrote:

    I don’t think (but obviously don’t know) that his Calvinism has anything to do with his alleged sexual activities with women outside his marriage. I think it is more likely something deeper and more personal that was lacking in either his character or his personal development or something

    Well, the account of Dr. Campbell’s failures certainly point to deep personal flaws in his character. I only bring up his theology as perhaps a contributing factor in that hyper-Calvinists believe that absolutely nothing ever happens or can happen that God did not decree. It’s easier for a Calvinist, than a non-Calvinist, to justify moving south of moral north if they believe that God predestined it.

  26. From the post: a bio excerpt, and an obit link: “Iain D. Campbell was a brilliant communicator, in constant demand as a lecturer and conference-speaker. He had a quite extraordinary fluency of speech, but the fluency was disciplined by clarity, precision and careful arrangement. The delivery was effortless, though often passionate, the mastery of the subject complete, and while there was no trace of arrogance he spoke with the Bible-derived authority of a true preacher.”

    Maintaining 7 affairs is neither disciplined nor without “trace of arrogance”. Furthermore, it is not a model of “Bible-derived authority of a true preacher”.

    Blah, blah, blah. Don’t mean to be crass here, however, last year there was an obit in the local papers about a “pillar of the community” – posted by family members, obviously. However, the guy was also a known pedophile – in the community.

    Good grief, what is with the dual reality of these icons? Do oil and water mix?

  27. “I am tired of reading *how to* books by Calvinistas who are experts on obedience but role model for us a life that is lacking in that area.” (Dee)

    “We are all within an inch of succumbing to the delusion that it is possible to be one thing in one context and something else in another. The real danger lies in the deception that whispers that we are safe behind the mask of hypocrisy.” (Ian Campbell, Hypocrisy in High Places)

  28. Max wrote:

    It’s easier for a Calvinist, than a non-Calvinist, to justify moving south of moral north if they believe that God predestined it

    Yes, I see what you mean. I believe that is what trips up the pups, definitely, IMO. What do you make of the fact that this man was very accomplished yet chose to remain in a small church? I have been pondering that.

  29. Max wrote:

    “We are all within an inch of succumbing to the delusion that it is possible to be one thing in one context and something else in another. The real danger lies in the deception that whispers that we are safe behind the mask of hypocrisy.” (Ian Campbell, Hypocrisy in High Places)

    http://www.ligonier.org/learn/articles/hypocrisy-high-places/

    Unreal. Pastor Iain Campbell (Iain with the double i) is writing about the sin he is actually in, and recommends:
    1 – examine oneself
    2 – guard one’s heart
    3 – walk in the steps of Christ.

    How about, #4. Be transparent with our spouse?

    #5: Football coach Bud Grant says, “Go home for dinner.” Not very theological, but works, every time.

  30. Dee–I’m glad you pointed out that the women here were victims of sexual assault and that these were not affairs. I also think there were probably more than seven women, but it could be something else.

    I also have to wonder what Dr. Campbell’s thought processes were in all this. We’ll never know, of course. I know that when I was suicidal and hospitalized in the late 1990s, it was because I was in an enormous amount of psychic pain and I simply couldn’t see how to go any further from day to day. Yeah, I was causing problems for people around me (example: I seem to recall breaking up a date a friend of mine was on with my woes–oops). But I felt like I’d fallen into a deep dark well, was splashing around in the water at the bottom, was getting tired, couldn’t get out and thinking I should just give up. That said, I have no insight into what Dr. Campbell was thinking.

  31. Julie Anne wrote:

    I understand Anne’s anger. She has suffered much and now will have to raise her children without their father and explain these difficult circumstances to her children.

    And it seems the community blames the wife. Like that Tony Jones guy who was philandering with a girlfriend and had his wife committed. His unfaithfulness, her (wife’s) fault, obviously. Re-run.

  32. Gram3 wrote:

    What do you make of the fact that this man was very accomplished yet chose to remain in a small church?

    As I noted in an upstream comment “Church can provide a hiding place where trust and betrayal in pulpit and pew play sinful games.” The bigger the stage the more likely one is to be eventually exposed.

  33. JYJames wrote:

    Good grief, what is with the dual reality of these icons?

    I am not a psy*. I think that people build false identities for lots of reasons and sometimes because it is necessary for their goals. Maybe someone starts down a life path (academic in the Reformed tradition) that entails certain decisions that necessarily entail other decisions (marriage) and preclude other decisions (other sexual relationships) and that creates the necessity to create a false identity/life (happy family man with multiple adulterous relationships.)

    When it becomes apparent that the false identity will be exposed and the life that has been built on the false identity will be lost, then the question is how can that exposure/shame be survived? Can it be survived? In that desperate situation, people make desperate and usually irrational decisions that are unwise and sometimes tragic because they see no way out of the corner they have painted themselves into.

  34. Gram3 wrote:

    What do you make of the fact that this man was very accomplished yet chose to remain in a small church? I have been pondering that.

    Max will answer for himself I’m sure.

    My two cents is that it certainly made him look very humble, didn’t it?

  35. Gram3 wrote:

    I believe that is what trips up the pups, definitely, IMO.

    New Calvinism, with its YRR army, if not restrained will eventually lead to antinomianism. We are seeing symptoms of that already in their ranks.

  36. Bridget wrote:

    Gram3 wrote:

    What do you make of the fact that this man was very accomplished yet chose to remain in a small church? I have been pondering that.

    Max will answer for himself I’m sure.

    My two cents is that it certainly made him look very humble, didn’t it?

    False humility and cheap grace go hand-in-hand. “Cheap grace is the grace we bestow on ourselves. Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance …Cheap grace is grace without discipleship …” (Dietrich Bonhoeffer)

  37. Max wrote:

    “We are all within an inch of succumbing to the delusion that it is possible to be one thing in one context and something else in another. The real danger lies in the deception that whispers that we are safe behind the mask of hypocrisy.” (Ian Campbell, Hypocrisy in High Places)

    Oh my, he was talking about himself!

  38. Gram3 wrote:

    Max wrote:
    It’s easier for a Calvinist, than a non-Calvinist, to justify moving south of moral north if they believe that God predestined it
    Yes, I see what you mean. I believe that is what trips up the pups, definitely, IMO. What do you make of the fact that this man was very accomplished yet chose to remain in a small church? I have been pondering that.

    Perhaps it has something to do with taking Justification by Faith to a whole nutha level. A level where behavior has no effect upon one’s standing in Christ, no matter what that behavior might be. The thinking would be that one’s justification is grounded in complete, and full assurance of one’s salvation. I believe this is the danger of alien righteousness within Reformed theology. The idea that when a person sins, God doesn’t see me but the imputed righteousness of Christ. “Peek-a-boo, I don’t see you,” says God.

  39. Max wrote:

    Gram3 wrote:
    I believe that is what trips up the pups, definitely, IMO.
    New Calvinism, with its YRR army, if not restrained will eventually lead to antinomianism. We are seeing symptoms of that already in their ranks.

    Yes, Max. It’s that whole notha level of assurance of salvation No Matter What I Do.

  40. Max wrote:

    False humility and cheap grace go hand-in-hand. “Cheap grace is the grace we bestow on ourselves. Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance …Cheap grace is grace without discipleship …” (Dietrich Bonhoeffer)

    And cheap grace is thinking that repentance has nothing to do with our BEHAVIOR.

  41. Gram3 wrote:

    What do you make of the fact that this man was very accomplished yet chose to remain in a small church?

    Control of the situation?

  42. Max wrote:

    It’s easier for a Calvinist, than a non-Calvinist, to justify moving south of moral north if they believe that God predestined it.

    I think you’re onto something Max.
    It would probably also go a ways in explaining why George Whitefield lobbied for slavery to be perfectly legal in the Georgia colony of his time, regardless of it’s inherent injustice and cruelty.
    If it’s predetermined by the Almighty himself, how can it be wrong? If goodness has no metric in and of itself and all by itself, it’s much easier to spray Jiminy Cricket with DDT.

  43. Gram3 wrote:

    When it becomes apparent that the false identity will be exposed and the life that has been built on the false identity will be lost, then the question is how can that exposure/shame be survived? Can it be survived? In that desperate situation, people make desperate and usually irrational decisions that are unwise and sometimes tragic because they see no way out of the corner they have painted themselves into.

    I was thinking the same thing.

  44. Darlene wrote:

    Perhaps it has something to do with taking Justification by Faith to a whole nutha level. A level where behavior has no effect upon one’s standing in Christ, no matter what that behavior might be

    In my experience, the NeoCalvinists have NO need for Christ and the Cross. It’s ALL about *them*. They brag about how before the beginning of time that God chose them, yes them, to be saved and they are among God’s *Elect*. The way I understand it, they practically saved themselves and Jesus is an afterthought. I really don’t even understand why Jesus didn’t stay in heaven, kick back and have a hot beverage and a snack, and why He even bothered coming to earth when He wasn’t needed because after all we have The Elect.

  45. @ Darlene:
    Gram3 wrote:

    Christiane wrote:

    those dour, dignified, reserved Scots? … I guess the old pagan DNA will out after all and it will be difficult for the islanders to return to the weaving of tweed after all this excitement

    I have no idea what you mean by this remark, but it is unkind and uninformed. And off-topic.

    My comment is a reflection of an incident in the past that is very famous on the Island of Lewis/Harris. It is also a reflection of the contrast between the behaviors reported before, during, and after the incident. It involves some conjecture as to a possible relationship between Iain Campbell and the minister who came to the Island during the incident in the last century. If it seems reflective and cryptic, I apologize. To me, the ‘setting’ (the Hebrides), the history and culture of the people, and the events past and present seem related and connected to me. The CONTRASTS involved are stunning. My comment was reflective. Sorry you did not understand as it was cryptic, and I take responsibility for its tone, which was easily misinterpreted and therefore insensitive. I’ve always been fascinated with the Western Isles, with their history, and with the culture of the people. The story of the Great Revival is a remarkable one. This news and its strangeness seems to me to be page 2 of the continuation of strange and dramatic events among the locals. (My southern ancestors included Scots of the McGilbray, McCleod, and Jackson clans)

  46. Gram3 wrote:

    So sadly ironic that he had helped to reunify some churches that had split.

    These are Knock Free Church of Scotland and Point FCOS, who voted to unify just January 18th. They’re not to be confused with the Knock and Point FCOS (Continuing), which is part of another denomination. Whilst on holiday in Stornoway, Mrs AA and I chanced to converse with some kind folk from the Stornoway FCOS (Continuing) and asked about the “Continuing” part. They didn’t know where that originated– just that they’d split from the FCOS sometime back. In the wider community, they’re known for continuing to staunchly oppose Sabbath ferry runs. https://stv.tv/news/highlands-islands/250177-calum-macleod-suspended-by-free-church-of-scotland-in-stornoway/

  47. dee wrote:

    @ drstevej:
    Yay! Faster than a jaguar.

    Gram3 wrote:

    Christiane wrote:

    those dour, dignified, reserved Scots? … I guess the old pagan DNA will out after all and it will be difficult for the islanders to return to the weaving of tweed after all this excitement

    I have no idea what you mean by this remark, but it is unkind and uninformed. And off-topic.

    Gram3 wrote:

    Christiane wrote:

    those dour, dignified, reserved Scots? … I guess the old pagan DNA will out after all and it will be difficult for the islanders to return to the weaving of tweed after all this excitement

    I have no idea what you mean by this remark, but it is unkind and uninformed. And off-topic.

    Christiane,

    I am a Scot and you do not know what you’re talking about.

    Now, as far as Campbell (a very common name in the north), he is a selfish man, if the accusations turn out to be true, and no hero worthy of admiration. I’m getting tired of the completely inappropriate and evil reactions of the church to sexual abuse in its ranks. The world is watching.

  48. @ Dave A A:
    “The hardline FCC is among the few churches which claim using Sunday transport to the islands cannot ever be justified.” http://bit.ly/2mvOGhz

    And if one’s ox per chance tumbles into a pit on the Sabbath, would it be permissible to pull him out?

  49. JYJames wrote:

    @ Dave A A:
    “The hardline FCC is among the few churches which claim using Sunday transport to the islands cannot ever be justified.” http://bit.ly/2mvOGhz
    And if one’s ox per chance tumbles into a pit on the Sabbath, would it be permissible to pull him out?

    At my ex-NeoCalvinist gulag, I was berated for doing my laundry on a Sunday “in violation of The Sabbath”. Sigh.

    I had helped a neighbor/mom with cancer on chemo who was terribly sick from it all with hair falling out, she has a husband and three young children, on a Saturday (when I would normally do my laundry).

    I think that Jesus cared more about helping this mom with cancer, than what day I did my laundry.

  50. @ Velour:
    Amen. It is a work of mercy to care for the sick on the Sabbath …. it’s not considered abandoning the honoring of God, in fact it’s the opposite 🙂

  51. Velour wrote:

    I think that Jesus cared more about helping this mom with cancer, than what day I did my laundry.

    Exactly. Jesus knew the darkness of the religious types back then, and the same behavior pops up in our churches now.

  52. JYJames wrote:

    And if one’s ox per chance tumbles into a pit on the Sabbath, would it be permissible to pull him out?

    “Although the kirk session had concerns about the use of the ferry on Sabbath, they were more concerned about the unnecessary collection of animals that day.”

  53. Would you be willing to change your headline?

    The term, committed suicide, is from British common law and was used when suicide was a crime.
    The terminology now used is death by suicide, or died by suicide. This change is necessary in all cultures for suicide survivors; family and friends who face the stigma of losing a loved one to suicide.

    It is going to take a long time to help people, including media, wean off the more familiar, legally incorrect term ‘committed’ suicide.

    Thanks.

  54. BD wrote:

    Would you be willing to change your headline?
    The term, committed suicide, is from British common law and was used when suicide was a crime.
    The terminology now used is death by suicide, or died by suicide. This change is necessary in all cultures for suicide survivors; family and friends who face the stigma of losing a loved one to suicide.
    It is going to take a long time to help people, including media, wean off the more familiar, legally incorrect term ‘committed’ suicide.
    Thanks.

    Here is the American Copy Editors Society information on the changes being made in terms used. http://www.copydesk.org/blog/2015/03/27/aces-welcomes-ap-stylebook-entry-on-suicide-ap-reveals-changes-at-2015-conference/

    Thank you for your thoughtfulness and sensitivity.

  55. He was a man of transparent piety

    I think the word they were going for is apparent, not transparent– he was a man of *apparent* piety.

    It doesn’t surprise me that the women involved have been convinced Iain had a difficult home life – that was likely the story he used to groom his victims. It is possible they have been duped and haven’t realized it yet. They should show grace to his widow, they may have completely misjudged her.

    5. I don’t know what happened and I don’t want to know. And those of you who claim to ‘know’ more almost certainly don’t.

    I believe this attitude is all wrong and is counterproductive. The Bible says that ‘the mature have their senses trained to discern good and evil.’ If we hide our heads in the sand, how are we to develop wisdom and become mature? We have to grapple with reality in order to become mature. The reality is that these situations happen. We need to face that and learn how best to deal with them. As long as we pretend nothing is wrong, we don’t learn, and the same problems happen over and over again.

    6. Trust the Church: trust the investigation process

    In what way has any church demonstrated they are worthy of trust? I don’t believe in blind trust, not where human beings are involved. The church is a group of human beings. Where there is no transparency, sin gains a foothold and flourishes. Trust God and trust the process of honesty and truth.

    7. Christians who see this as an opportunity to attack the Church and to justify themselves and their own cynicism.

    Honestly facing what happened, learning from it and finding ways to prevent a similar situation and protect future victims should not be seen as “attacking the church.” It should be seen as necessary for the health of the church. I believe that talking things through, dealing with the facts openly, and seeking solutions to create a better tomorrow are the only way that makes any sense.

    Until churches start doing that, I really don’t feel it’s a safe place.

  56. Christiane wrote:

    @ Velour:
    Amen. It is a work of mercy to care for the sick on the Sabbath …. it’s not considered abandoning the honoring of God, in fact it’s the opposite

    Thanks, Christiane.

    My retort to that NeoCalvinist gulag members about my laundry: “Oh, so you’re telling me that you’d like to pick up MY laundry and do it? And my neighbor’s laundry and do it for a family of five? How nice! When can we expect you? What is your turnaround time for getting it back to us clean and folded? Are you like the French laundry? Will you wrap it all in nice blue paper and tie the bundles of fresh, folded laundry with string?”

    Silence. Dead silence when I signed them up for laundry service as “the solution”.

  57. JYJames wrote:

    JYJames wrote:
    Velour wrote:
    I think that Jesus cared
    Jesus cared then, and he cares now.

    Tears, JY James.

    Thank you for your kind words.

  58. Darlene wrote:

    Max wrote:

    “We are all within an inch of succumbing to the delusion that it is possible to be one thing in one context and something else in another. The real danger lies in the deception that whispers that we are safe behind the mask of hypocrisy.” (Ian Campbell, Hypocrisy in High Places)

    Oh my, he was talking about himself!

    That is actually rather chilling.

  59. Darlene wrote:

    Perhaps it has something to do with taking Justification by Faith to a whole nutha level. A level where behavior has no effect upon one’s standing in Christ, no matter what that behavior might be. The thinking would be that one’s justification is grounded in complete, and full assurance of one’s salvation.

    And yet they are so legalistic! All of the dos and don’ts and membership covenants and excommunications and so on. Is it one extreme to the other?

  60. dee wrote:

    @ Julie Anne:
    I have a sneaking suspicion that this guy may have more than 7 victims. he may outnumber Tullian.
    Has anyone out there considered that he entered this line of work because he could be in a position of trust? I know people who like theology but are not necessarily committed to the faith.

    We know paedophiles get themselves into roles where they have access to children. But we don’t know what was going on in Campbell’s mind. Seven victims does sound like the work of a sexual predator.

    BTW he definitely wasn’t a new Calvinist. Scottish Calvinism is very traditional, strict, old-school. I’m sure it’s authoritarian and patriarchal.

  61. dee wrote:

    @ Sergius Martin-George:
    Oh good night! Now I know why he miffed me off. You are far more observant than I am!!!

    Dave Robertson is not a very nice man. I discussed his post about the abuse with Jon Smyth and he rejected the victims pleas to the Archbishop of Canterbury to come clean about how much he really knew. Robertson said that the Archbishop said he “did not know about it and I believe him”. He rejected the victim’s plea for more information as “nasty attempt to smear a fine man” and ignored several key facts – such as the fact that influential figures in the Church of England knew about it in 1982. I said that the victims are in pain, they need to be heard and they want answers. He replied with contempt “unless you have evidence you are indulging in gossip!” Of course there is a possibility that the Archbishop really did not know but I don’t think the situation is being dealt with properly, especially in light of this article by the Guardian – Damning Report Reveals Church of England Failure to Act on Abuse.

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/mar/15/damning-report-reveals-church-of-england-failure-to-act-on-abuse

    Robertson left out important facts and he failed to address many questions. Suffice to say I don’t trust him at all and I find no humanity or compassion in him.

  62. I didn’t word the above comment very well. I was simply suggesting that it is possible that Campbell could have chosen a role where he had private meetings with women, in the same way that paedophiles want to be around children.

    I know many clergy who refuse to meet the opposite sex in private to prevent any possible accusations. Similarly, I always remember that Billy Graham refused to be photographed in a group with women unless his wife was present.

  63. Dr Campbell supposedly was a Bible expert as well as an expert on sin and its cure. We are supposed to take his advice since he published this for public consumption.

    “Bait a trap with p*ssy and you’ll catch a preacher every time.”
    — Christian Monist’s uncle

    I get that people fall and have an affair. But 7 affairs spread over decades? This is not a one time slip. It is a lifestyle.

    This is not “Mistakes Were Made(TM)”.
    This is a heavy-duty WOMANIZER.
    Whether Tee-Tee Serial Playa or All At Once.

    Sadly, it appears that church folks are now blaming Campbell’s widow, Anne, for making him unhappy!

    “See What YOU Made Me Do????????”

    You expected different from God’s Speshul Pets the Predestined Elect?

    https://i1.wp.com/nakedpastor.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/biblical-manhood.jpg?w=600

  64. siteseer wrote:

    He was a man of transparent piety

    I think the word they were going for is apparent, not transparent– he was a man of *apparent* piety.

    It doesn’t surprise me that the women involved have been convinced Iain had a difficult home life – that was likely the story he used to groom his victims.

    “My Wife, She Don’t Understand Me…”?

    6. Trust the Church: trust the investigation process

    Anyone seen Spotlight lately?
    SNAP?

    7. Christians who see this as an opportunity to attack the Church and to justify themselves and their own cynicism.

    “All Who Live Godly in Christ Jesus Shall Suffer PERSECUTION! PERSECUTION! PERSECUTION!”

  65. JYJames wrote:

    From the post: a bio excerpt, and an obit link: “Iain D. Campbell was a brilliant communicator, in constant demand as a lecturer and conference-speaker. He had a quite extraordinary fluency of speech, but the fluency was disciplined by clarity, precision and careful arrangement. The delivery was effortless, though often passionate, the mastery of the subject complete, and while there was no trace of arrogance he spoke with the Bible-derived authority of a true preacher.”

    “For Satan himself can transform Himself to appear as an Angel of Light.”
    — some Rabbi from Tarsus

    Ever notice Calvinism seems to breed flowery speech?
    So many flowery wordsmiths like Piper and Douggie Wilson…

  66. Velour wrote:

    At my ex-NeoCalvinist gulag, I was berated for doing my laundry on a Sunday “in violation of The Sabbath”. Sigh.

    I had helped a neighbor/mom with cancer on chemo who was terribly sick from it all with hair falling out, she has a husband and three young children, on a Saturday (when I would normally do my laundry).

    “Which is lawful on the Sabbath: to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?”
    — some Rabbi from Nazareth

  67. Ian wrote:

    I didn’t word the above comment very well. I was simply suggesting that it is possible that Campbell could have chosen a role where he had private meetings with women, in the same way that paedophiles want to be around children.

    I understand what you meant. And I agree.

  68. In the greater scheme of the bizarre. determinist world of the “elected,” protected, blame-free Calvinist(a), this attempted Iain Campbell cover-up, blameshifting, and damage control and brand protection are nothing (condolences to the family members, though, as they are the true victims and have lost a dad, a brother, son, etc.).

    There are mountains of skeletons of all variations (abuse in all its despicable forms, etc.) ready and waiting to thunder and bleed out of Calvinist closets. The doors are there, and they will open, one by one.

    As brands go, this false gospel brand WILL disappear; the sooner, the better. Its priggish pious walls have begun to crumble. Thank God.

  69. While reading this, I kept thinking of the quote from Animal Farm, “All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others.” I definitely think there are two sets of rules. Does this mean we are not to examine their fruit? I’m fairly certain there is a Carpenter from Galilee who would disagree!
    Also, the attempt to lay the blame for this on his wife and her subsequent shunning by the community I find utterly despicable. Iain Campbell died as a result of his OWN sin and guilty conscience. Jeremiah 31:29-30 says so…unless the ESV somehow left that passage out of their “permanent text edition!”

  70. Darlene wrote:

    he was talking about himself!

    Some of the most sinful preachers preach hard against the very sins they are in. Psychological flaw or an attempt to draw the suspecting off their trail? Remember Ted Haggard? Whatever the sick reason, I’m getting tired of preachers who can’t keep their pants on and religious systems which enable them.

  71. Root 66 wrote:

    Iain Campbell died as a result of his OWN sin and guilty conscience.

    A lot of people are deeply troubled by guilt and their own sin; but they do not commit suicide.

    I suspect what was happening with Iain Campbell was that he was in a very, very dark place for a long time. By the time someone commits suicide, generally they are at the end of a long isolated sad journey into the darkness.

    That people shunned his wife was also a sign of their own deep troubles ….. I think being able to do such an unkind thing to the minister’s wife, after the events of this tragedy, also reveals a darkness in the midst of this faith community.

    what is that saying?
    ‘only in darkness the light’:
    the contrasts in this whole story are stunning, epic, and there IS a history in the isle of Lewis of strange spiritual happenings in my own opinion

  72. Darlene wrote:

    I believe this is the danger of alien righteousness within Reformed theology. The idea that when a person sins, God doesn’t see me but the imputed righteousness of Christ. “Peek-a-boo, I don’t see you,” says God.

    Exactly! “When I sin, Jesus is standing in front of me. God doesn’t see me; He see Jesus covering me” … which is theological baloney, of course.

    Some Calvinists also stretch the humanity of Jesus out of bounds to justify their own bad behavior. By subordinating the Son to the Father, they can limit Jesus’ holiness and purity to a lower standard. I once heard a Calvinist say in a Sunday School class “I believe if Jesus were here today, he would be sitting around a campfire drinking beer with the boys and telling jokes.” I took the opportunity to ‘preach’ who Jesus was and what He was really like at length. He never came back to Sunday School.

  73. Max wrote:

    Darlene wrote:
    I believe this is the danger of alien righteousness within Reformed theology. The idea that when a person sins, God doesn’t see me but the imputed righteousness of Christ. “Peek-a-boo, I don’t see you,” says God.
    Exactly! “When I sin, Jesus is standing in front of me. God doesn’t see me; He sees Jesus covering me” … which is theological baloney, of course.
    Some Calvinists also stretch the humanity of Jesus out of bounds to justify their own bad behavior. By subordinating the Son to the Father, they can limit Jesus’ holiness and purity to a lower standard. I once heard a Calvinist say in a Sunday School class “I believe if Jesus were here today, he would be sitting around a campfire drinking beer with the boys and telling jokes.” I took the opportunity to ‘preach’ who Jesus was and what He was really like at length. He never came back to Sunday School.

    Darlene and Max: I love both your comments, and I do agree 100%. Keep on telling the biblical truth; it’s so good to hear. Do these people who say these illogical things ever actually HEAR themselves? “Jesus would have a beer”; in other words, I can have someone else’s wife or go a stripping tonight…coz God ain’t seein’ me, He a seein’ Jesus and his beer.

  74. Why is it always the wife’s fault when the man strays and has multiple affairs? My feeble mind just can’t comprehend this. I heard this same thing said about a person who I hold dear to my heart, and it was so far from the truth. Why is it so hard to believe that many men just can’t hold to the thought of monagamy in marriage? Many many years ago, my family were going to a small church for a few months. On Mother’s Day the pastor announced from the pulpit that he had been having multiple affairs with married women of the church. Wow, what a way to celebrate Mother’s Day. We never went back to that church.

    Dee – the funny video was shown on our local news last night and on one of the national news stations here in the U.S. My hubby and I got a big laugh out of it both times.

  75. @ Max:
    Max wrote:

    The idea that when a person sins, God doesn’t see me

    my goodness, OUR collective ‘sin’ as that force that drove the nails into the Hands and Feet of the Crucified Lord … this is not understood?
    What recognition is it that brings people to their knees in sorrow when they gaze upon the One Whom they have slain????
    “10” …. they will look on Me whom they have pierced; and they will mourn for Him, as one mourns for an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him like the bitter weeping over a firstborn. ”
    whatever repentance is, it starts when grace is poured out so that people understand what they have done, and why they are saddened to the point of changing their lives and returning to God

    ‘God doesn’t SEE their sin? Our Lord suffered because of it …. they do not realize this????

  76. Root 66 wrote:

    unless the ESV somehow left that passage out of their “permanent text edition!”

    A YRR pastor at an SBC church plant down the road from me claims Romans 8:1 as his “life verse.” From his trusty ESV he quotes it often:

    “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Rom 8:1 ESV)

    I visited his church once – I like to listen to these young reformers to see what makes them tick. In his “sermon”, he quoted this passage. After the service, I approached him and read the passage from my Bible:

    “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit” (Rom 8:1 KJV)

    He looked in his Bible and said “Nope, it’s not there!” I then responded that if he read further in Romans 8, that even in the ESV he would find Paul talking about walking in the flesh vs. walking in the Spirit. I reminded him that preaching wasn’t preaching at all if he took text out of context. He smiled and walked away.

    Note: I realize that various versions of the Bible deal with this verse differently depending on the original manuscripts used for the individual translations. But, the context does indeed agree in all versions when it comes to flesh vs. Spirit. Some folks like to lower the standard to meet their own.

  77. Max wrote:

    By subordinating the Son to the Father, they can limit Jesus’ holiness and purity to a lower standard.

    The idea of a relational ‘sub’ position of son to father is something I have heard innocently expressed by a Christian woman, this: ‘Jesus isn’t God, He is the Son of God’

    I didn’t understand what she said then.
    I get it now. And what kinds of teachings would have led her to say that in all good conscience. She was not a ‘theologian’ but she was someone who loved Jesus, yes, an elderly distant cousin of my mother’s.

  78. Dr Campbell supposedly was a Bible expert as well as an expert on sin and its cure. We are supposed to take his advice since he published this for public consumption.

    And people are sick of sitting in rows and being lectured by an “expert” in a suit who, all too often, turns out to be incompetent or corrupt. Is it any wonder that the church has lost credibility in society?

  79. @ Dave A A:
    The Free Church Continuing arose after a split with the Free Church of Scotland in 2000 after Professor Donald Macleod was acquitted in court of sexual assault, the Sheriff (Judge) ruling that there had been a conspiracy against him. The islanders are more reserved than most and do not, as a rule, wash their dirty linen in public.

    Rev David Robertson, former Moderator of the Free Church did indeed interact witth various contributors here a few years ago and, yes, he was the author of the post that appeared in Christian Today. It was written for his own blog, “The Wee Flea” in response to the rather salacious mud-raking of the tabloid press here. As such, it is a fine, compassionate piece that does not stoop to the level of innuendo or insinuation. Re-read the tabloid reports and you will see the difference between what he said and what the press allege.

    There will be no cover up. There is no blame shifting as Boston Lady alleges, nor is there anyone, Calvinist or otherwise, who is declaring themselves to be blame-Free.The Free Church will conduct its own investigation fairly and impartially and report on the facts. It is not true that Mrs Campbell was not shunned by the community, nor was she forced to flee the island.

    To return to what David Robertson said. He introduced the piece by saying this:-
    “My phone has hardly stopped ringing over the past couple of days, with journalists from different news organisations desperate for information and ‘an informed opinion’ about the recent tragic death of Iain D Campbell. It still disappoints me that in a world where people are being killed, this is considered so newsworthy that it merits so many column inches and so much gossip. However to some degree I don’t blame the journalists – that is the world they inhabit and they are just doing their jobs. Its more reading the accompanying comments and even more sadly what passes for ‘prayerful concern’ in the Christian world , which really sticks in the throat.”

    The last sentence is particularly apt when reading some of the analysis and commenting here.

  80. Christiane wrote:

    “Jesus isn’t God, He is the Son of God” … what kinds of teachings would have led her to say that in all good conscience

    Reformed theology … Eternal Subordination of the Son doctrine. If they can get her to believe this lie, it is easier for her to accept being subordinated herself as a lesser citizen of the Kingdom than men.

  81. Christiane wrote:

    whatever repentance is, it starts when grace is poured out so that people understand what they have done, and why they are saddened to the point of changing their lives and returning to God

    ‘God doesn’t SEE their sin? Our Lord suffered because of it …. they do not realize this????

    Oh, but Christiane, that is old-time preaching! We’ve entered a new age of enlightenment, don’t you know?!

    General William Booth (founder of the Salvation Army) looked down the road and saw the age in which we live when he said:

    “I consider that the chief dangers which confront the coming century will be religion without the Holy Ghost, Christianity without Christ, forgiveness without repentance, salvation without regeneration, politics without God, and heaven without hell.”

  82. Christiane wrote:

    Root 66 wrote:

    Iain Campbell died as a result of his OWN sin and guilty conscience.

    A lot of people are deeply troubled by guilt and their own sin; but they do not commit suicide.

    I suspect what was happening with Iain Campbell was that he was in a very, very dark place for a long time. By the time someone commits suicide, generally they are at the end of a long isolated sad journey into the darkness.

    That people shunned his wife was also a sign of their own deep troubles ….. I think being able to do such an unkind thing to the minister’s wife, after the events of this tragedy, also reveals a darkness in the midst of this faith community.

    I’m not sure Campbell killed himself because he was in a dark place. I suspect it was more that he couldn’t face being exposed as a hypocrite who had lived a lie for years. A public humiliation awaited him and he would almost certainly be defrocked and fired.

    Regarding what’s happened to his wife, it reminds me of the time that Mark Driscoll blamed Gayle Haggard for Ted Haggard’s affair. In the misogynistic world of patriarchal Christianity, men are never at fault. The strict Calvinism which undoubtedly dominated that island appears to have created a very harsh culture indeed.

  83. I do not see enough objective evidence to justify blaming this man’s behavior on either his theology or his cultural ethnicity. I am not going there at this time on the limited evidence at hand. Personal responsibility cannot be so easily dismissed.

  84. Max wrote:

    Oh, but Christiane, that is old-time preaching!

    coming from a VERY ancient preaching 🙂 the prophet Zechariah himself ….. (I think he is in the Protestant OT also, yes)

  85. okrapod wrote:

    I do not see enough objective evidence to justify blaming this man’s behavior on either his theology or his cultural ethnicity. I am not going there at this time on the limited evidence at hand. Personal responsibility cannot be so easily dismissed.

    Agreed. Whatever the driver be for our behavior, we will all stand accountable to a Holy God for our own sin. “God ordained it or made me do it” will not preach on Judgment Day.

    “Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done.” (Revelation 20)

    “I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life” (Deuteronomy 30)

    I think what some folks are saying in the comment stream is that personal behavior – particularly religious behavior – can be shaped by one’s understanding of God according to the theology they feed on. But at the end of the day, personal responsibility cannot be dismissed, as you note. It will matter not to God on that day what our religious tradition and teaching were.

  86. Ian wrote:

    In the misogynistic world of patriarchal Christianity, men are never at fault. The strict Calvinism which undoubtedly dominated that island appears to have created a very harsh culture indeed.

    you may be right, come to think of it

  87. Christiane wrote:

    in the middle of the last century, the people there were notorious drunks and sinners and ‘cared not for their souls’ according to the legend, and two ladies, elderly Christian sisters, prayed for help from God to come to the island …. well, apparently something DID happen:
    there was an explosive revival with everyone crying and weeping and coming to Church and a minister came from the mainland whose name was ‘Campbell’ (??? relative of the present late pastor??? ) and the hell-raising people of Lewis became very, very faithful, praying and weeping and crying in Church all night,
    and by all accounts, until now, the ‘awakening’ stuck;

    This is such an informative comment. Thank you so much.

  88. K.D. wrote:

    church folks wonder many people don’t want to join them for services on Sunday?

    Great comment. I wouldn’t want to spend one minute of my time with the *pious* people of that church.

  89. Bridget wrote:

    If the people who lead churches believe they know a man because they listen to his sermons . . . . well, that explains the problem in churches today. Foolish men leading people.

    Good comment. The only thing they know is that he paid li service to their theological agenda. In some circles, that beats righteous behavior any day of the week.

  90. Max wrote:

    I would place Campbell in the classical Calvinist ranks, not a New Calvinist … of the R.C. Sproul sort, not John Piper.

    Thank you for weighing in. Could you expand more on the differences between John Piper’s theology and RC Sproul’s theology? I am still trying to figure it out.

  91. Gram3 wrote:

    I don’t think he’s a Calvinista as you said, but I don’t think (but obviously don’t know) that his Calvinism has anything to do with his alleged sexual activities with women outside his marriage.

    Good comment. What I am trying to figure out is how his theological beliefs failed him.

  92. Max wrote:

    It will matter not to God on that day what our religious tradition and teaching were

    AMEN, AMEN, AMEN

  93. Max wrote:

    It’s easier for a Calvinist, than a non-Calvinist, to justify moving south of moral north if they believe that God predestined it.

    Thoughtful comment.

  94. JYJames wrote:

    what is with the dual reality of these icons?

    This is exactly what I am trying to figure out. Did he ignore his beliefs? Did he use them as a cover for his activities? One thing is for certain. If these allegations are true, and I think that they are, then this must be grapples with.

  95. Max wrote:

    We are all within an inch of succumbing to the delusion that it is possible to be one thing in one context and something else in another. The real danger lies in the deception that whispers that we are safe behind the mask of hypocrisy.” (Ian Campbell, Hypocrisy in High Places)

    This is exactly what I am talking about. Was this a cryptic confession? What was going on in his mind through the decades?

    I do not know how he kept up fhis alleged deviant behavior for so long? I can justify things for awhile but for decades?If he was truly struggling with this, why didn’t he up and leave his pulpit and accept any number of high profile offers? Or, was this exactly what he wanted? I am really struggling with this.

  96. Gram3 wrote:

    What do you make of the fact that this man was very accomplished yet chose to remain in a small church? I have been pondering that.

    Me, too. Either he had a serious mental disease or he stayed because he wanted this lifestyle. No one spends 2 decades allegedly deceiving people without somehow wanting to do so.

  97. @ JYJames:
    You know, it might be interesting to collect some of his quotes and do another post. This guy is worth looking at very seriously. I have set up a post and if any of you wish to submit Iain Campbell quotes, put them in this comment thread. I will give you credit for finding them.

    This story is worth a closer look, especially as I have read all of your comments.

  98. Max wrote:

    It will matter not to God on that day what our religious tradition and teaching were.

    “At the evening of life, we shall be judged on our love” (St. John of the Cross)

  99. Max wrote:

    personal behavior – …at the end of the day, personal responsibility cannot be dismissed, as you note. It will matter not to God on that day what our religious tradition and teaching were.

    Where the rubber meets the road, the litmus test, the billboard, of what we believe is in how we behave.

  100. dee wrote:

    No one spends 2 decades allegedly deceiving people without somehow wanting to do so.

    or perhaps feeling that he NEEDED to do it and not finding a way out?

  101. JYJames wrote:

    And it seems the community blames the wife. Like that Tony Jones guy who was philandering with a girlfriend and had his wife committed. His unfaithfulness, her (wife’s) fault, obviously.

    What a good comment.

  102. Muff Potter wrote:

    It would probably also go a ways in explaining why George Whitefield lobbied for slavery to be perfectly legal in the Georgia colony of his time, regardless of it’s inherent injustice and cruelty.

    I did not know this. Thank you for bringing it up.

  103. JYJames wrote:

    Unreal. Pastor Iain Campbell (Iain with the double i) is writing about the sin he is actually in, and recommends:
    1 – examine oneself
    2 – guard one’s heart
    3 – walk in the steps of Christ.

    Could this be another example of self-treating in secret by preaching against it like an inward-focused pep rally?

  104. one of the little people wrote:

    I’m getting tired of the completely inappropriate and evil reactions of the church to sexual abuse in its ranks. The world is watching.

    Me, too. I think this story is worth a closer look. There is much to be learned from it….something that the church and admirers of Campbell do not want.

  105. okrapod wrote:

    I do not see enough objective evidence to justify blaming this man’s behavior on either his theology or his cultural ethnicity. I am not going there at this time on the limited evidence at hand. Personal responsibility cannot be so easily dismissed.

    I agree, and something similar could be said about the women involved in these alleged affairs. The women may not be victims of clergy sexual abuse at all. They simply made personal decisions to have an affair with a revered Christian leader. Yes, there are women like that; they are attracted to power, status, influence, etc. No grooming by the clergy is necessary.

  106. JYJames wrote:

    how we behave

    And how we behave is how we treat others – down to the most basic and mundane, perhaps unnoticed, of daily life relationships – our spouse, the cashier at the grocer, the server at the cafe, folks on an elevator, fellow drivers on the road, commenters in discourse on a blog, the other gender, etc. Jesus is our role model. He walked the talk with everyone he met along the way.

    There are so many stories of leaders in our religious circles who, on a personal basis, are found wanting, i.e., the post about Francis Schaeffer and his wife Edith (and son Frank confirms in his books that the theologian was abusive to his wife).

  107. one of the little people wrote:

    Gram3 wrote:

    Christiane wrote:

    those dour, dignified, reserved Scots? … I guess the old pagan DNA will out after all and it will be difficult for the islanders to return to the weaving of tweed after all this excitement

    I have no idea what you mean by this remark, but it is unkind and uninformed. And off-topic.

    Christiane,

    I am a Scot and you do not know what you’re talking about.

    My mother’s people include Scots also in the South (NC) and I do know something important, this:
    their dignity in the face of sorrow: worry and grief ‘of the heart, not of the face’, their emotional suffering ‘is endured but not proclaimed’. So much is kept within and that little is shared or said that is about the pain seems more important as a kind of display of strength of character and the ability to endure with a ‘stiff upper lip’. But the pain is there, the depression, the darkness, still. If in community, they cannot express pain, where does it go but deeper within?

  108. JYJames wrote:

    “The hardline FCC is among the few churches which claim using Sunday transport to the islands cannot ever be justified.” http://bit.ly/2mvOGhz
    And if one’s ox per chance tumbles into a pit on the Sabbath, would it be permissible to pull him out?

    I took a course on the rules of the Pharisees. They did not allow anyone to spit on the ground on the Sabbath. Why? Because the moisture might cause a seed to sprout. That then is working on the Sabbath.

    Interesting thought: I bet they have no problem with health care professionals working on the Sabbath. What would happen if there was an emergency and a doctor need transport to the island?

  109. JYJames wrote:

    Where the rubber meets the road, the litmus test, the billboard, of what we believe is in how we behave.

    Indeed yes. In this case, then, one would say not that his theology (calvinism) failed him but rather that he did not believe it in the first place. Regardless of the convolutions of thinking in ways in which one can twist their own and other people’s thinking, Calvinism does not say help yourself to the women. Calvinism does not say that God has ordained that you can help yourself to the women. And if this man’s Calvinism was of the older and more strict variety, as some have said, then sexual immorality much less adultery is not preached from their pulpits.

    I do not think that his theology failed him; I think that he failed his theology.

    Which, by the by, do not we all do that in one way or the other regardless of which theology we espouse?

  110. dee wrote:

    Could you expand more on the differences between John Piper’s theology and RC Sproul’s theology? I am still trying to figure it out.

    While the essential doctrinal tenets are the same in both “Old” Calvinism (Sproul et al.) and “New” Calvinism (Piper et al.), there are some distinct differences in delivery of the reformed message.

    My first glimpse at the New Calvinist movement began in 2006 with Collin Hansen’s article in Christianity Today “Young, Restless, Reformed: Calvinism is making a comeback—and shaking up the church.” In that article, Hansen contrasted classical Calvinism with the new reformation. http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2006/september/42.32.html

    While I may not agree with everything in their post, The Reformed Baptist blog did a good job outlining differences between the old guard and their neo-brethren in “The New Vs. The Old Calvinism” http://www.reformedbaptistblog.com/2014/04/the-new-vs-old-calvinism.html

    While the old boys may not totally agree with the message and method of the new kids on the block, they appear to be putting up with their antics as long as the mission stays the same … to preach and teach reformed theology to the uttermost parts of the earth. Thus, Sproul and Piper can link arms occasionally at conferences … then go back to their individual ivory towers to speak to their individual followers with more teachings of another gospel that is not the Gospel at all.

  111. @ Max:

    “We are all within an inch of succumbing to the delusion that it is possible to be one thing in one context and something else in another. The real danger lies in the deception that whispers that we are safe behind the mask of hypocrisy.” (Ian Campbell, Hypocrisy in High Places)
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    wow – that is such a visceral statement. almost gives me shivers.

    he knows what it is to be in real danger, to feel unsafe behind the mask of hypocrisy.

    if allegations true, he must have lived many years with great stress and fear of being in such an unsafe position. sounds like a terrified way to live. paranoia-inducing.

    as JY says “What happens with couples – we haven’t a clue. It takes forensics.” however, never being able to escape the real danger of the mask of hypocrisy & never truly being safe (never being able to truly relax), this alone would account for an alleged difficult home life.

    it’s not so much a difficult home life as it is a difficult, tortured inward experience of living life in his own skin.

    when i hear “he had a difficult home life”, of course the implicit message is she’s to blame. how convenient. she is the scapegoat.

    How many of Iain Campbell’s groupies will be making Anne the scapegoat so they can keep their idols? she will sacrificed on the altar of “my hero is boss” and “my religious persuasion and subculture is boss”.

    talk about masks of hypocrisy.

    it is entirely right that a post mortem of his hidden life be conducted.

  112. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    another example of self-treating in secret by preaching against it

    http://www.cnn.com/2009/US/01/29/lkl.ted.haggard/
    Like Ted Haggard, former head of the National Association of Evangelicals, the anti-gay, gay preacher:

    “Haas [one of the guys with whom Haggard had an affair] added, ‘(Haggard) used to say to me, “You know what, Grant, you can become a man of God, and you can have a little bit of fun on the side.”‘”

  113. BD wrote:

    Would you be willing to change your headline?
    The term, committed suicide, is from British common law and was used when suicide was a crime.
    The terminology now used is death by suicide, or died by suicide

    I had never considered that. And yes, I will change the headline.Thank you for helping me to be more considerate.I guess it is an overused term and I didn’t think about the implications.

  114. siteseer wrote:

    He was a man of transparent piety
    I think the word they were going for is apparent, not transparent– he was a man of *apparent* piety.
    It doesn’t surprise me that the women involved have been convinced Iain had a difficult home life – that was likely the story he used to groom his victims. It is possible they have been duped and haven’t realized it yet. They should show grace to his widow, they may have completely misjudged her.

    You entire comment is excellent and should be read by everyone.

  115. Darlene wrote:

    Perhaps it has something to do with taking Justification by Faith to a whole nutha level. A level where behavior has no effect upon one’s standing in Christ, no matter what that behavior might be. The thinking would be that one’s justification is grounded in complete, and full assurance of one’s salvation.

    “I’m Saved, I’m Hell-proof, I Can Get Away With Anything & Everything, Gawd Saith!
    I Can Do Anything I Want. ANYTHING.”

    Like those Manichean Gnostics who messed up young Augustine’s head; except with them the attitude came from Platonic Dualism — “Since Flesh and Spirit are separate, I can indulge my Flesh without jeopardizing my Spiritual Superiority”. But the end effect was the same: “I Can Get Away With Doing Anything I Want. (As long as it’s Physical and not Spiritual.)”

    Add Predestination into the mix and you’ve cut in the supercharger. “I WANNA!” becomes “God Wills It! (And who am I to refuse the Sovereign Will of God?)”

    Islam, that other example of Predestination, has had a problem with this among its rich and powerful throughout its history. Compounded by the same “In’shal’lah…” breeding passivity and fatalism among the powerless victims of the rich & powerful. An ideal combination for a Caligula or Nero on top Holding the Whip at Whim and everyone else Feeling the Whip. One informant of mine experienced a church in Louisville that was really into Predestination and noticed the exact same pattern, so I’m confident of classing it as a side effect of X-Treme Predestination.

    I believe this is the danger of alien righteousness within Reformed theology. The idea that when a person sins, God doesn’t see me but the imputed righteousness of Christ. “Peek-a-boo, I don’t see you,” says God.

    “Uh, that’s Under the Blood.”
    — Mike Warnke

  116. Ian wrote:

    even victims does sound like the work of a sexual predator.
    BTW he definitely wasn’t a new Calvinist. Scottish Calvinism is very traditional, strict, old-school. I’m sure it’s authoritarian and patriarchal.

    Two good points. Thank you for weighing in on Scottish Calvinism. I have a lot of reading to do.

    Also, I have also wondered if his behavior is akin to pedophiles. There are 7 alleged affairs. However, these go over 2+ decades. I am suspicious that there is much more going on here.

  117. siteseer wrote:

    Honestly facing what happened, learning from it and finding ways to prevent a similar situation and protect future victims should not be seen as “attacking the church.” It should be seen as necessary for the health of the church. I believe that talking things through, dealing with the facts openly, and seeking solutions to create a better tomorrow are the only way that makes any sense.

    Absolutely. Every word in your comment bears repeating.

  118. @ ZechZav: You have added some interesting info about the John Smyth situation. Would you be willing to write up the details of your discussion and either comment here or send me an email? This is an important situation that involves the UK, Africa and the US.

  119. Christiane wrote:

    If in community, they cannot express pain, where does it go

    I just did a brief ‘google’ on that and there are many approaches to this issue.

  120. dee wrote:

    I think his life and writings deserve a closer look

    For example:

    “… ways in which we take God’s name in vain. Among them … professing His name but not living according to our profession …” (Iain Campbell, What Does it Mean to Take the Lord’s Name in Vain?)

  121. dee wrote:

    Interesting thought: I bet they have no problem with health care professionals working on the Sabbath. What would happen if there was an emergency and a doctor need transport to the island?

    True. Health professionals or in a medical emergency, they may make exceptions to their rules. But there are two things scary about their rule-setting practice for everyday life, like use of the ferry:

    1-Religious societies operating with systems of minutia rules often have hierarchies of authority, so they decide when to make an exception, often based on power and rank – those people get a pass on just about anything. Jesus never got a pass. He was so humbly incognito-a-nobody in his time, that the religious leaders falsely accused and knit-picked him to death, literally. The ultimate disguise – God as simple man. They didn’t get it, which proved they didn’t know God at all.

    2-How long until a rule-dominated religious society becomes like that Word of Faith group in the previous TWW post? http://bit.ly/2mduezB
    http://bit.ly/2ngBADo

  122. siteseer wrote:

    It doesn’t surprise me that the women involved have been convinced Iain had a difficult home life – that was likely the story he used to groom his victims. It is possible they have been duped and haven’t realized it yet. They should show grace to his widow, they may have completely misjudged her.

    They should. However, they’re likely to “Double Down and SCREAM LOUDER!” because “showing grace” means admitting they were wrong in the first place. And when you Stone the Jezebel who blew the whistle, you get to say “I Have Not Sinned”.

    I know where this comes from. A similar dynamic surviving High School Hell locked in a similar attitude in me. Never Admit to Anything, because if you admit to anything, you have just volunteered to be THE scapegoat for everyone else’s sins, all the way back to when Eve munched the Fruit. And the Righteous will be Joyful to lay all the blame on you. “I THANK THEE, LOOOOOORD, THAT I AM NOTHING LIKE….”

    It strikes me that any dynamic with “apparent piety” and surface Righteousness will be prone to this. Must Keep Up Appearances, you know. And is Calvinism especially prone to this? Where such surface Righteousness can become the desperately-desired PROOF of My Election?

  123. dee wrote:

    Also, I have also wondered if his behavior is akin to pedophiles.

    Definitely in the sense they were both sexual predation, just different target profiles.

    There are 7 alleged affairs. However, these go over 2+ decades. I am suspicious that there is much more going on here.

    Very possible; sexual predators often leave a bigger trail of victims than the known ones.

  124. Max wrote:

    dee wrote:

    I think his life and writings deserve a closer look

    For example:

    “… ways in which we take God’s name in vain. Among them … professing His name but not living according to our profession …” (Iain Campbell, What Does it Mean to Take the Lord’s Name in Vain?)

    Which does lend weight to the theory that he was self-treating in secret by preaching against his own secret sins & personality disorders.

    Like recovering alcoholic Billy Sunday preaching Christless sermons against Demon Rum.
    Like Rush Limbaugh being the most vocal fanboy of the War on Drugs while hiding a secret Oxycontin addiction.
    Like Ted Haggard preaching “God Hates Fags” second only to Fred Phelps while doing rentboys in secret.

    “You can tell when a preacher’s in trouble when he stops preaching what he’s for and starts preaching only what he’s against.”

  125. Christiane wrote:

    But the pain is there, the depression, the darkness, still. If in community, they cannot express pain, where does it go but deeper within?

    Onto the first scapegoat that presents itself?

  126. @ okrapod:
    remember, these people were Calvinists who lived in a mist-shrouded island somewhat isolated and their emotions were ‘insular’ also: they personally kept themselves to themselves, likely

    maybe the Lewis Revival was a ‘release’ of all that emotion? a therapeutic safety valve? whatever happened there, in the middle of the last century, people by the hundreds were staying up all night in the Church, crying, and praying, and that is a powerful kind of ‘CATHARSIS’ in the classic sense of the word for such reserved people

  127. Ken G wrote:

    I agree, and something similar could be said about the women involved in these alleged affairs. The women may not be victims of clergy sexual abuse at all. They simply made personal decisions to have an affair with a revered Christian leader. Yes, there are women like that; they are attracted to power, status, influence, etc. No grooming by the clergy is necessary.

    Which would explain the “Stone the Jezebel” reaction to Campbell’s widow.
    After all, she Rocked the Boat.

    “Women like that” are the basis of “Groupies”. (ed.) — if they’re (ed.) some high-status type with power, status, influence (say, an Edward Cullen or Christian Grey), THEY ARE IMPORTANT. THEY MUST BE IMPORTANT. In canid terms, they’re rubbing up against the Alpha so the Alpha’s scent will rub off onto them.

  128. JYJames wrote:

    Where the rubber meets the road, the litmus test, the billboard, of what we believe is in how we behave.

    And not just “how we behave in public”.

    That’s the difference between “Heavenly Virtue and Hellish Respectability”.

  129. @ Lowlandseer:

    ” It is not true that Mrs Campbell was not shunned by the community, nor was she forced to flee the island.”
    ++++++++++++++++

    perhaps not by official decree, nor being chased by church folk carrying pitchforks.

    have you considered the power of innuendo aimed at her? the power of silent communication? the power of body language, facial expressions, eye contact, and how those can be incisive tools?

    all manner of rejection and humiliation can be done under the radar and/or silently. under the circumstances, i can readily imagine it would be more than enough for Anne to vacate the scene.

  130. @ Headless Unicorn Guy:

    some thoughts (none of them will likely make sense to anyone but me):

    perhaps those predators who publicly proclaim their own salvation and condemn to hell all unrepentant sinners …. perhaps these men are in some kind of twisted ‘denial’ and are preaching out of a kind of sick ‘projection’ of their own hidden sins on to the situation of others …. sick, in the sense that they don’t realize fully that they ARE projecting (too many known examples of this phenomenon to name)

    they are solid in their super-ego judgment of others and of sin … they’ve got control over that

    they are not in control of their own demons …. their ‘id’ (pleasure-seeking) is not under control, if not completely unrestrained

    I would say such men have egos that have lost touch with reality and are living on the edge, where much must be kept hidden in hopes that their lost grip on reality will be kept secret and some control over what remains of their public image is all the hope they have left …. they are in deep trouble, these men, and are deceiving themselves, until they are no longer able to hide behind their public mask

    The despair of such men makes them all the more dangerous as predators.

  131. siteseer wrote:

    Darlene wrote:

    Perhaps it has something to do with taking Justification by Faith to a whole nutha level. A level where behavior has no effect upon one’s standing in Christ, no matter what that behavior might be. The thinking would be that one’s justification is grounded in complete, and full assurance of one’s salvation.

    And yet they are so legalistic! All of the dos and don’ts and membership covenants and excommunications and so on. Is it one extreme to the other?

    I read that as “all the dos and donts and membership covenants and excommunications” are litmus test after litmus test to PROVE to Themselves that THEY are Elect. (And more important, that everyone else ISN’T.)

    At least that’s how it expresses itself under Calvinism. In Calvary Chapel milieus, the litmus tests for assurance of salvation were total conformity to Papa Chuck & Pastor, coming from “Don’t be Left Behind” and “Sin of Rebellion”. But the “More Saved Than Thou” foundation was the same.

    “For in the Devil’s theology, the most important thing is to be Absolutely Right and to prove everyone else to be Absolutely Wrong. This does not lead to peace and harmony among men.”
    — Thomas Merton, “Moral Theology of the Devil”

  132. elastigirl wrote:

    done under the radar and/or silently

    With God, the “behind the scene” is actually the scene. He is everywhere and all knowing.

    Why these delusional but “informed” expert theologians and preachers don’t get that – is a conundrum. The Iain Campbell bio reads like he is an absolute religious genius, yet he failed at the most basic level. His own little immoral world inside his glowing global evangelical reputation.

  133. Christiane wrote:

    such men have egos that have lost touch with reality and are living on the edge, where much must be kept hidden in hopes that their lost grip on reality will be kept secret and some control over what remains of their public image is all the hope they have left

    Great analysis. I would include also, “some women”…

  134. elastigirl wrote:

    have you considered the power of innuendo aimed at her? the power of silent communication? the power of body language, facial expressions, eye contact, and how those can be incisive tools?

    all manner of rejection and humiliation can be done under the radar and/or silently. under the circumstances,

    With one major additonal Feature:
    TOTAL PLAUSIBLE DENIABILITY, with accompanying Total Wide-Eyed Innocence(TM).

    Perfect for blame-shifting and gaslighting, as there are no actual overt acts the victim/scapegoat can point to as proof.

  135. Christiane wrote:

    they are solid in their super-ego judgment of others and of sin … they’ve got control over that
    they are not in control of their own demons …. their ‘id’ (pleasure-seeking) is not under control, if not completely unrestrained

    The rise to prominence (self-actualization) above their level of competence (control of self).

  136. Darlene wrote:

    I am so sick of hearing the word “Biblical,” because of the way it’s been used by this crowd, as well as the wider Christian community, that I don’t use it. The word has been emptied of any significant meaning. How about using words like integrity, honesty and compassionate?

    Oh, I can just hear the response from the self-important church leaders now: “But… but… but… those are words that the unbelievers use, to describe their own behaviour! Words like those are worldly and carnal, and smack of pride in their own imagined righteousness. If we use those ordinary words, how can we feel all special and set apart? If we don’t use “Biblical”™ and “Gospel”™ to describe everything we do, how will anyone recognize us as holy!? And how can you even suggest that we have anything in common with those who don’t know Jesus?!?”

    Not that I can read their minds, but I suspect that thinking like this might be behind overuse of the Christianese buzzwords.

  137. JYJames wrote:

    Christiane wrote:
    such men have egos that have lost touch with reality and are living on the edge, where much must be kept hidden in hopes that their lost grip on reality will be kept secret and some control over what remains of their public image is all the hope they have left

    And when that hope is finally dashed by Reality, there’s only the Iain Campbell Escape Route left.

    Great analysis. I would include also, “some women”…

    In classic English, indeterminate or mixed gender defaults to masculine. “Men” can be inclusive of both sexes/genders in that context. However, in today’s Activist Newspeak…

  138. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    gender

    Well, there are some gender aspects here, the Preacher guy with the Groupie girls.

    However, in Hollywood, for example, the ego rise of an actor or actress to out of control immorality seems to be gender inclusive or gender neutral, all on board.

  139. elastigirl wrote:

    talk about masks of hypocrisy.

    it is entirely right that a post mortem of his hidden life be conducted.

    His life badly needs a Speaking from Ender Wiggins.
    (from Speaker for the Dead by Orson Scott Card)

  140. elastigirl wrote:

    when i hear “he had a difficult home life”, of course the implicit message is she’s to blame. how convenient. she is the scapegoat.

    When I hear that, I think of the old pickup line “My Wife, She Don’t Understand Me.”

  141. @ Lowlandseer:

    “…Its more reading the accompanying comments and even more sadly what passes for ‘prayerful concern’ in the Christian world , which really sticks in the throat.”

    The last sentence is particularly apt when reading some of the analysis and commenting here.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++

    i find the commenters here to be direct & straight shooters, who have no need for passive aggression in the form of ‘prayerful concern’.

    there is every reason to be cynical when we hear “There will be no cover up” and “The Free Church will conduct its own investigation fairly and impartially and report on the facts”, and the like.

    we routinely observe in christian culture a double standard for leaders versus pions. For men versus women. we routinely observe human lives being destroyed for the sake of the institution, its perceived heroes, and for the welfare and convenience of its leaders.

    “Trust the church”. based on what?

    Say the words Trust The Church “with the caution you would normally reserve for ‘Please castrate me.'” (my favorite line from ‘Bernard & the Genie’)

    there is every reason to scrutinize.

  142. Lowlandseer wrote:

    It is not true that Mrs Campbell was not shunned by the community, nor was she forced to flee the island.

    And you know this… how, exactly?

  143. Sadly, the church member’s treatment of Anne is all too typical as it comes to how faithful spouses are treated upon revelation of infidelity. People push The Shared Responsibility Lie (http://www.divorceminister.com/why-does-the-shared-responsibility-lie-persist/).

    Ian strikes me as an especially “accomplished” cheater if the allegations are true, which I have no reason to believe they are not. Over twenty years of living a double life suggests very DEEP problems in Ian.

  144. elastigirl wrote:

    Say the words Trust The Church “with the caution you would normally reserve for ‘Please castrate me.’” (my favorite line from ‘Bernard & the Genie’)

    Great line, Elastigirl!

  145. Christiane wrote:

    @ Headless Unicorn Guy:

    some thoughts (none of them will likely make sense to anyone but me):

    My thoughts usually don’t make sense to anyone but me. It’s gotten better over time, but you should have heard me in my 20s…

    And I’m spending too long in this thread and have to run. Six hours sleep instead of four really makes a difference in the brain fog department.

  146. Lowlandseer wrote:

    It is not true that Mrs Campbell was not shunned by the community, nor was she forced to flee the island.

    First, thank you for the information in your comment. It is helpful to me. Is it possible that the “shunning” is more of an informal response of a community in shock rather than a formal shunning by the church and that his widow felt more comfortable in her grief away from there? I can see how the story could be spun in many ways for various purposes.

    I pray that you are correct that the church will conduct a thorough and complete and fair investigation. I confess that my experience makes me skeptical. I agree with what Siteseer wrote above about the process.

    I do not agree some other commenters that we can conclude that his suicide was due to his Reformed theology since I’m sure that there are instances of suicides following exposures of adultery by clergy of other theological persuasions. I believe that there is a general human tendency to circle the wagons of the tribe around the Big Men when the tribe feels threatened by an attack on one of their own which is perceived by those in the tribe as a personal attack. I also believe that we place far too much confidence in mere humans, including ourselves.

  147. @ Headless Unicorn Guy:

    headless, with all affection, what planet do you live on? 🙂

    (i truly hope i didn’t insult you, here! see, happy face & all. to me, the farther afield from the lowest common denominator of the status quo the better the affirmation)

  148. Lowlandseer wrote:

    The Free Church will conduct its own investigation fairly and impartially and report on the facts. It is not true that Mrs Campbell was not shunned by the community, nor was she forced to flee the island.

    How can you claim this? Are you an expert on this situation? An elder in this church perhaps?

    You make this assertion in the same way that the American pastor says,

    “an American pastor was writing, ‘I never met or heard Dr Campbell in the flesh, but I knew him from sermon audios, and the sermons I heard told me all that I needed to know of the man. The reason for his high reputation was obvious.”

    The American pastor apparently knew nothing about Campbell except his public persona.

  149. ZechZav wrote:

    Dave Robertson is not a very nice man. I discussed his post about the abuse with Jon Smyth and he rejected the victims pleas to the Archbishop of Canterbury to come clean about how much he really knew. Robertson said that the Archbishop said he “did not know about it and I believe him”. He rejected the victim’s plea for more information as “nasty attempt to smear a fine man” and ignored several key facts – such as the fact that influential figures in the Church of England knew about it in 1982. I said that the victims are in pain, they need to be heard and they want answers. He replied with contempt “unless you have evidence you are indulging in gossip!” Of course there is a possibility that the Archbishop really did not know but I don’t think the situation is being dealt with properly, especially in light of this article by the Guardian – Damning Report Reveals Church of England Failure to Act on Abuse.

    Honestly, I believe it is the Dave Robertsons in the church that enable the mess it is in. I suppose in his mind he is protecting the church but in reality he is making sure it remains a hospitable place for secret sin. It is so akin to dysfunction in families, just on a bigger scale. It isn’t the sin that matters, it’s appearances. “We don’t talk about that!”

  150. dee wrote:

    What I am trying to figure out is how his theological beliefs failed him.

    I'm not sure exactly which beliefs you mean, but knowledge of any kind is never enough to keep us from sinning (please do not ask me how I know this.) He obviously had plenty of knowledge. So Reformed or non-Reformed, he or anyone else is vulnerable to sin. The lure of the Big Man in the clergy is that somehow he will be immune to sin when actually I think the temptation (pride) and opportunity (those who seek to bask in the glow of proximity to greatness) is greater.

  151. Ken G wrote:

    The women may not be victims of clergy sexual abuse at all. They simply made personal decisions to have an affair with a revered Christian leader. Yes, there are women like that; they are attracted to power, status, influence, etc. No grooming by the clergy is necessary.

    While that might be true for some of them, I don’t think the odds are in favor of it being true for all of them. And the fact that it went so long without his wife finding out also tells me that even if there wasn’t clergy sex abuse, there had to be some level of grooming to keep those other women quiet.

  152. Lowlandseer wrote:

    It is not true that Mrs Campbell was not shunned by the community, nor was she forced to flee the island.

    Huh? And you know this how? I also do not trust the *investigation* a priori. We now are aware that there probably was one huge liar in this system. Why should I believe that is an anomaly? You also did not provide one scintilla of evidence that disproves what occurred.

  153. Lowlandseer wrote:

    The last sentence is particularly apt when reading some of the analysis and commenting here.

    It is vital to understand how 2+ decades of alleged clergy abuse of women was hidden from everyone. It is important to understand why his theology preached one thing and his alleged actions demonstrated another.
    This was not one simple affair. It was an alleged lifetime of misconduct. You should and must ask questions. If you don’t, it will just be the same old, same old without insight and without change
    However, never fear, we shall be asking the questions. I do not care what Robertson claims about our motives. He does not define me.

  154. @ dee:
    Fair enough. There’s been a lot of talk on the thread about whether he was abusing his position. Possibly. It is possible that he knew someday the jig would be up. Suicide may have always been his exit strategy. As soon as the confrontation happened, the pills came out, and he seemed heck bent on doing it. I don’t think it was impulsive.

  155. @ Bridget:
    I can say it because it is true. The church has declared what it will do and it will do it. A strange concept, I know. Who would believe that there are people of the Book, who are also people of their word?

  156. Jack wrote:

    @ dee:
    Fair enough. There’s been a lot of talk on the thread about whether he was abusing his position. Possibly. It is possible that he knew someday the jig would be up. Suicide may have always been his exit strategy. As soon as the confrontation happened, the pills came out, and he seemed heck bent on doing it. I don’t think it was impulsive.

    That is so true. A local man was embezzling money from his clients, running around on his spouse. In his note he left after shooting himself, he knew he’d be caught, and then when he was going to be arrested, checked into a motel, and after consuming a large amount of narcotics, killed himself, all planned years earlier.

  157. dee wrote:

    However, never fear, we shall be asking the questions. I do not care what Robertson claims about our motives. He does not define me.

    Brava!

  158. Gram3 wrote:

    knowledge of any kind is never enough to keep us from sinning … He obviously had plenty of knowledge.

    Yes, another sad story demonstrating once again that knowledge is not understanding, nor wisdom. It matters not how much a preacher knows if he has not developed a spiritual understanding of the jots and tittles he studies. Acquiring knowledge is not the same as knowing the Lord Jesus. Having a fine-tuned intellect will never enable you to walk as you ought … only the Holy Spirit can turn what you know into wisdom. I’m convinced that some of the smartest preachers in the pulpit do not fully understand what they preach about walking in the flesh vs. the Spirit.

  159. dee wrote:

    Lowlandseer wrote:

    It is not true that Mrs Campbell was not shunned by the community, nor was she forced to flee the island.

    looking at this, am I seeing some kind of a double-negative that I missed?
    It’s difficult to fathom because of the ‘not true’ whether is just applies to the ‘not shunned by the community’ OR if the ‘not true’ also carries over to the ‘nor was she forced to flee’ part.

    ?

  160. Lowlandseer wrote:

    I can say it because it is true. The church has declared what it will do and it will do it. A strange concept, I know. Who would believe that there are people of the Book, who are also people of their word?

    I would love to see a church fully investigate and treat sin as sin, comfort those who have been harmed, report those who have or are suspected to have participated in criminal activity. It would make my day.

  161. dee wrote:

    What I am trying to figure out is how his theological beliefs failed him.

    We attended a Southern Baptist church years ago. The pastor was a tremendous pastor/teacher. He proclaimed Scriptural truths with a passion. He had the right theological beliefs from my assessment and delivered them accurately in his sermons; he was a graduate of a good seminary. After several years in the pulpit, he openly confessed during a service that he had never really given his life to Christ, that he was lost! He subsequently wept and repented of his sins before the congregation and was baptized the next Sunday by an associate pastor. He was a much better preacher after that! It is possible to know the right stuff but not experience it … if it’s not in your “knower”, your walk will not be right … and what you think you know will fail you.

  162. @ Christiane:
    In a final response to what Dee has said and your “Brava!”I will only ask that you both/ all read in full what David Robertson wrote. It is a necessary corrective to the speculation that passes for insightful comment both here and in the press.

  163. one of the little people wrote:

    I’m getting tired of the completely inappropriate and evil reactions of the church to sexual abuse in its ranks. The world is watching.

    You betcha! One of the things going on right now in Scientology land is that a prominent actor-Scientologist has been accused of multiple rapes, and it appears the Los Angeles Police Department might be sitting on them. In the most recent discussion, one of the victims had to pay thousands of dollars to be audited through her “whole track” to find out where in one of her past lives she might have caused this. (Yes, in Scientology, sexual assault is your fault.) I mentioned the issues with some churches telling victims to forgive their attackers and it turned into a discussion of gee…some people we know, in particular Douglas Wilson and his victim-blaming. Yes, the whole world is watching.

  164. Gram3 wrote:

    The lure of the Big Man in the clergy is that somehow he will be immune to sin when actually I think the temptation (pride) and opportunity (those who seek to bask in the glow of proximity to greatness) is greater.

    True.

  165. Lowlandseer wrote:

    Who would believe that there are people of the Book, who are also people of their word?

    Bottom line, in the final analysis: people are defined, in essence, by their actions, neither their book, nor their word.

    What’s that saying? Talk is cheap, and a book is simply talk on paper. (With the exception that the Bible is God talking – whole different story, reality, dynamic – He is true to His Word & Written Word. Humanly impossible.)

  166. We had a local issue recently. The denomination (LCMS) stepped in and solved it; the pastor was removed. Life went on. It did not become a community issue and neither the church nor the associated school went under. This can happen. I am thankful for how well it went here.

    This does not mean it will always work out this well, but it does mean that sometimes it does. The denomination may be the best place to start.

  167. “I have news for pastors. Their job is not more stressful on family life than many others like single moms who work two jobs, doctors, air traffic controllers, intelligence agents, etc. Sorry-Campbell doesn’t get a pass for decades of alleged abuse of women because he was stressed *in the manse.*”

    This is the best thing I’ve read in a while.

  168. Max wrote:

    I would place Campbell in the classical Calvinist ranks, not a New Calvinist

    I am just now learning about Iain Campbell. I did see that back in 2009 his book Doctrine of Sin was published with the following endorsement from Ligon Duncan (one of the T4G).

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/185792438X/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=185792438X&linkCode=as2&tag=headhearthand-20&linkId=LM4FIXJX5IXM5KSK

    “In a day in which there is increasing evidence of the syncretism of evangelical theology and neo-orthodoxy, even in the Reformed community, Iain D. Campbell has provided a timely antidote in his excellent study of The Doctrine of Sin. Campbell capably summarizes the main lines of biblical and Reformed thinking on the doctrine of the Fall and sin, and contrasts that teaching with the opinions of leading proponents of the so-called new orthodoxy. The result is ….a crucial caveat against our witting or unwitting concession to the subjectivising tendencies of the neo-orthodox view of sin” (Ligon Duncan ~ Chancellor and CEO, Reformed Theological Seminary)

  169. ishy wrote:

    And the fact that it went so long without his wife finding out also tells me that even if there wasn’t clergy sex abuse, there had to be some level of grooming to keep those other women quiet.

    According to the above Sun article, the accused mistresses were married and have called in their lawyers. It seems that these women would naturally want to keep quiet to preserve their marriages and reputation in this small community.

  170. @ Deb:
    Thanks for putting this out there.

    What is the point of a highly regarded “Doctrine of Sin” when the author is a married preacher with 7+ mistresses?

    Wow – disconnect of theology and life – much?

    What is the point of an incredibly sophisticated theology when one cannot be faithful to one’s spouse? Basic. Big life issue played out in the everyday.

  171. okrapod wrote:

    I do not see enough objective evidence to justify blaming this man’s behavior on either his theology or his cultural ethnicity. I am not going there at this time on the limited evidence at hand. Personal responsibility cannot be so easily dismissed.

    I’m in partial agreement. The guy was already predisposed. Let’s just say that his theology helped grease the wheels.

  172. Ken G wrote:

    According to the above Sun article, the accused mistresses were married and have called in their lawyers. It seems that these women would naturally want to keep quiet to preserve their marriages and reputation in this small community.

    It says they consulted lawyers because Anne lobbied to have them kicked out of the church. There’s no evidence they are/were trying to keep it quiet.

  173. Lowlandseer wrote:

    brain

    I say baloney to you. You have no way of knowing how the church will handle it. You are as naive as the American pastor who thought he knew Campbell from listening to his sermons. Or Peter, himself, who claimed he would never deny his Lord.

    I honestly hope things are handled well, but you cannot claim that you know it will be handled well just because they are “people of the book.”

  174. ishy wrote:

    It says they consulted lawyers because Anne lobbied to have them kicked out of the church. There’s no evidence they are/were trying to keep it quiet.

    Please read the Sun article. It does not state what you have written. The mistresses are believed to have consulted lawyers due to the investigation of the allegations, not because they are at risk of getting kicked out. Of course, they would naturally want to keep the alleged affairs quiet while the affairs were ongoing, to protect their marriages and reputation. Now it’s too late. The cat is out of the bag, so to speak. Grooming was not required.

  175. Amen on this. One of the best summations I have read here, and that’s saying a great deal.

    “I get that people fall and have an affair. But 7 affairs spread over decades? This is not a one time slip. It is a lifestyle. Sorry. I don’t buy it. He preached in public, he admonished us in public and now it is his turn in public. We need to understand why his head knowledge didn’t become heart knowledge. If guy like this can’t do it, then something is wrong with how he, and others, approach obedience and all of us need to figure it out by looking at situations like this.”

  176. Ken G wrote:

    ishy wrote:
    And the fact that it went so long without his wife finding out also tells me that even if there wasn’t clergy sex abuse, there had to be some level of grooming to keep those other women quiet.
    According to the above Sun article, the accused mistresses were married and have called in their lawyers. It seems that these women would naturally want to keep quiet to preserve their marriages and reputation in this small community.

    Why should they? From all appearances they have been victims of clergy sexual abuse and Undue Influence.

    There is a reason that it is illegal for doctors, lawyers, therapists and other professionals to have sexual relationships with patients/clients — because of the power imbalance and they are in trusted positions.

    The same should be true of clergy.

  177. I have found this story very hard to deal with, to be honest. First, the way the wife is apparently being treated according to news reports about her husband’s alleged affairs and his apparent suicide. This should be the time when a congregation surrounds the wife for several reasons, the apparent alleged double life her husband was apparently allegedly living and her loss of her husband to an apparent suicide. No matter her feelings she has suffered a great deal of loss. It could be a time of real healing and Christian witness as well as well just being human. Unfortunately, some neo-Calvinist leaning folks seem to have a very low view of being human. One undercurrent that was somewhat preached from the pulpit but lived out in so many ways back when I first became a Christian was just how much God loathes almost all of humanity from the foundations of the universe. Most were created with one purpose alone to be condemned and cast into perdition for the glory of a Holy God. So when real evil happened it was seen as good in the sense that it served an apologetic value to point out our continued total depravity and hatred towards God and His hatred towards pretty much all of humanity.

    I never had the spiritual maturity to understand a Father who hates His Children or even an artist who hates His creation if you will.

  178. Lowlandseer wrote:

    The Free Church Continuing arose after a split with the Free Church of Scotland in 2000 after Professor Donald Macleod was acquitted in court of sexual assault, the Sheriff (Judge) ruling that there had been a conspiracy against him. The islanders are more reserved than most and do not, as a rule, wash their dirty linen in public.

    This ties into Dr Campbell’s case more than I suspected. According to the BBC in 2000, “Twenty-two ministers left the Free Church over their allegations that improper behaviour by Professor Macleod has never been properly investigated.” http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/scotland/610505.stm
    The Guardian includes a little more commentary of interest: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2000/jan/22/religion.uk
    So the group who became the FCC were the ones who pushed for a church trial. Now it’s possible there were reasons (such as an alleged lady friend in Australia) for the Wee Frees to investigate the good professor which wouldn’t hold water in the Queen’s courts of law. And maybe he was too important to fail. Or maybe the Continuing laddies just wanted to stand in the way of progress, as with the ferry boats. Anyhow, this doesn’t give me great hope that the Wee Frees will be particularly zealous in investigating possible misdeeds by Rev Campbell.

  179. brian wrote:

    I never had the spiritual maturity to understand a Father who hates His Children or even an artist who hates His creation if you will.

    brian wrote:

    I never had the spiritual maturity to understand a Father who hates His Children or even an artist who hates His creation if you will.

    beautifully expressed, Brian
    ….. you have been blessed not to have been led into that dark vision of a hateful God

  180. Velour wrote:

    That said, I am sorry to hear that he committed suicide as his “solution” when professional help is available. I feel for his wife, children, and friends.

    As am I. I am comfortably certain with the idea that his brand of religion made this situation far worse than it should have been.

  181. I am wondering if frequent TWW visitor “Nick” has any input in this regard. I have missed his commenting of late.Deb wrote:

    “Doctrine of Sin” … endorsement from Ligon Duncan (one of the T4G)

    While Duncan may have endorsed him, Iain Campbell didn’t mix well with certain New Calvinists in the U.S. He wrote some fairly critical reviews of Tim Keller’s books (I actually found myself agreeing with Campbell on that). The New Calvinist who’s who have been quiet about his passing, except for Duncan who tweeted a link to his obituary.

  182. Max wrote:

    I am wondering if frequent TWW visitor “Nick” has any input in this regard. I have missed his commenting of late.

    Sorry, I didn’t mean to include this line in my response to Deb.

    Nick, are you out there?

  183. Dr. Fundystan, Proctologist wrote:

    Velour wrote:
    That said, I am sorry to hear that he committed suicide as his “solution” when professional help is available. I feel for his wife, children, and friends.
    As am I. I am comfortably certain with the idea that his brand of religion made this situation far worse than it should have been.

    As am I. In addition to the religious brand, I fear another factor making it worse is simply Ministry as Career. The poor man had apparently been set on ministering since age 14 and was “good” at it. Asking for help might have very large career consequences — even if allegations were all untrue and other problems drove him to despair.
    Of course, Ministry as Career is a very large problem insoluble except by cutting off giving toward such, which would be unfair to all the good people reliant upon it.

  184. dee wrote:

    @ Dave A A:
    Your comment is fascinating.

    I topped off the tank needlessly needlessly on Saturday, knowing I’d be driving 2 hours from Lewis to Harris on Sabbath and petro-fied of running short of petrol with no station open. Upon arrival in Tarbert, absolutely the only places open for business were the hotel and the kirks.
    More seriously, I’ve been commenting on slightly tangential issues only because the sources for the affair/abuse/shunning allegations leave much to be desired, such as the daily fail. If/when the widow comes forward to some reputable news outlet, or alleged partners or victims call up someone like you or Julie Anne, then we’ll be able to discuss things of that nature more intelligently. In the meanwhile issues like clergy suicide, church unity/disunity, sabbath laws,, or disappearing obituaries are all on the table for me.

  185. Ken G wrote:

    Now it’s too late. The cat is out of the bag, so to speak. Grooming was not required.

    You seem to think they only needed grooming after they were found out. That’s not how it works. Serial abusers start grooming the moment they pick a target. They choose targets who they think would let them abuse them, then they choose situations to go after their targets where the target is most vulnerable. Someone who has repeatedly had affairs does so with purpose and intention, and also does so to hide them.

    To make the statement that all seven women were predators, and not groomed for the relationship based on a power differential, whether you or the newspaper, is malarky.

  186. okrapod wrote:

    I do not think that his theology failed him; I think that he failed his theology.

    Which, by the by, do not we all do that in one way or the other regardless of which theology we espouse?

    You’re on to something there, Okrapod. Even with the Reformed view of alien righteousness there comes a point where the fire t words of Jesus must enter in if one has a working, healthy conscience. Iain Campbell knew the Scriptures & what they say about adultery. Perhaps it comes down to something this simple: He cared more about satisfying his passions than pleasing God. I don’t prefer to be simplistic in many situations, but I’m thinking perhaps that folks can go to the other extreme of trying to analyze something that isn’t all that complicated.

  187. @ dee:

    The conversation was on his public blog post – see comments by me (Zechariah) and his replies:

    https://theweeflea.com/2017/02/07/christian-camps-and-child-abuse-is-evangelical-theology-to-blame/

    I was completely taken aback when he said that the victims appeal to Justin Welby was a “nasty attempt to smear a find man”. He obviously has no empathy for their pain to treat them like that. I personally have no desire to smear Justin Welby but I stand with the victims who need to be heard. I also don’t believe that Welby’s response is sufficient and that he should have done more to interact with them, instead of just saying “I did not know about it” and move on.

    This statement by Robertson stood out to me:

    “John Smyth has been accused of sadistically beating boys. Smyth was a leader of what were called the “Bash” camps run by the Iwerne trust. There is no suggestion the abuse took place at the camps themselves”.

    But he never commented on the fact that Smythe held prayer meetings in the nude, or that the Iwerne Trust were made aware of the abuse in 1982. Nor does he discuss the fact that Justin Welby was, at the very latest, made aware the abuse in 2013. It begs the questions as to why the Iwerne Trust did not report it in 1982, and what did Justin Welby do when he first heard about it four years ago? Did he make enquiries and co-operate with the police at the time? Did he request the Christian organisation in Zimbabwe to be alert and take preventative action? Did he make any effort to contact of the victims? That being said, a Channel 4 report on this states that Iwerne Trust made a report in 1982 of “horrific beatings” written by Mark Ruston, a friend of Mr. Welby. But Robertson chooses to believe the Archbishop’s statement that he knew nothing of the abuse at the time. It just doesn’t add up that senior figures in the church of England have known for years, and that a teenager was found dead in a swimming pool in Zimbabwe in a camp related incident. Yes, I have no concrete evidence that Justin Welby didn’t know and perhaps he didn’t, but the victims are entitled to answers. The victims who wrote the letter that appeared in the telegraph were there with Welby but Robertson chooses to believe Welby and paints the victims as “nasty”. If anyone has any answers to the above questions please tell me because I would like to believe the best about the Archbishop.

    The aforementioned Channel 4 report can be read here: https://www.channel4.com/news/christian-lawyer-who-beat-boys-was-charged-over-zimbabwe-death

    I felt that interacting with this man any more would have brought my blood to boiling point and also the use of explicit, unsanctified language and therefore took a few steps back. Just when I thought he could not sink any lower, I read his abusive tweets to Julie at Spiritual Sounding Board today. He is nothing more than a bully who hits out at anyone who stands with victims and poses a threat to polished image and reputation of his church and denomination. He is not worth interacting with and Julie eventually did the right thing and called it a day with him. I will no longer dignify any of his tweets or blogs with a response but I may speak to others in the same conversation. There is no point arguing with someone like that. He reminds me of the reason why I abandoned the institutional church.

  188. And I just don’t know how “fire t” got in there. On my phone again. I don’t make those kind of mistakes on the computer.

  189. dee wrote:

    Ian wrote:

    even victims does sound like the work of a sexual predator.
    BTW he definitely wasn’t a new Calvinist. Scottish Calvinism is very traditional, strict, old-school. I’m sure it’s authoritarian and patriarchal.

    Two good points. Thank you for weighing in on Scottish Calvinism. I have a lot of reading to do.

    Also, I have also wondered if his behavior is akin to pedophiles. There are 7 alleged affairs. However, these go over 2+ decades. I am suspicious that there is much more going on here.

    I don’t think multiple affairs is anything like paedophilia. I would say he just had a weakness for women. Perhaps he got a thrill out of having an affair. Could it have become an addiction? 7 in 20+ years – whilst a lot, it doesn’t seem like addictive behaviour. Even if his marriage was shaky, it doesn’t excuse affairs, especially for a minister.

    I wonder if, as the minister, women came to him for counselling, and he managed to groom and manipulate some of them into becoming his sexual partners. Perhaps those who were emotionally vulnerable for some reason.

    I previously suggested he might have killed himself to avoid having to face the consequences of what he’d done. I’ve also realised that, inside, he must have been a very troubled man. To have a public face as a model of virtue, yet privately be committing serious repeated sin, must produce a huge amount of inner conflict. But I think he was able to cope with that, as he only killed himself when his affairs were exposed.

    Another explanation is that he was corrupt, possibly not a Christian, who didn’t really care for the things of God. I think that can be discounted, as a fake preacher is unlikely to choose a remote island church, and wouldn’t be driven to suicide when exposed.

    There is so much we don’t know.

  190. Lowlandseer wrote:

    Who would believe that there atre people of the Book, who are also people of their word?

    I pray this is true. What a breath of fresh air it would be. I trust you can understand that many of us have believed that only to learn it is not always true and, worse, that it is not always possible to know when it is true and when it is not true. As you get information on the process, please let us know which worthy men (or women???) will be taking care of this. I, for one, would like to see some good behavior by Churchmen.

  191. dee wrote:

    JYJames wrote:

    The pastor asked her what she was “doing to make him that way”.

    Banging my head against a wall!

    This is Classic guilt tripping that goes on in all Patriarchal cultures. I’ve been having some encounters as of late on the Internet with Christians who support & promote Patriarchy. I’ve bumped into this mindset frequently, most often expressed by male adherents of Patriarchy, with a few females chiming in. Recently, on one Christian site I began a post about the dangerous views of Patriarchy & how such views are harmful to women. You would not believe all the Radical Adherents of Patriarchy that came out of the woodwork! It got so bad with the sexist, hateful comments toward women, along with their toxic views of how women should think and submit, submit, submit…..That aI shut down the entire thread. I was concerned for the women who might be reading their comments, who already live in that kind of sub-culture, who would be persuaded to submit to an abusive partner.

  192. @ ZechZav:
    Thanks for the Channel 4 video links. There are several.
    In this one: http://bit.ly/2nriXvK A religious commentator, Anne Atkins, says the police were told about the abuse in 1982, in “gory detail” but they did nothing. Ms. Atkins asks:
    1 – Why do we – Christians, the church – not speak out?
    2 – How can we guard against this happening again?
    Finally, they discuss the church in cahoots the local police and a cover-up, like Boston and the RC priests, Spotlight.

  193. Lowlandseer wrote:

    It is a necessary corrective to the speculation that passes for insightful comment both here and in the press.

    I hear you. I really do. But I hope that Mr. Robertson and the other clergy hear the lowly pewpeons who are asked time and time again to trust the clergy with no questions allowed. When transparency is lacking, speculation is invited. When trust has been violated so many times by the Professional Clergy Class (of all Brands) in the past, then it is difficult to keep going back to the dry well of “trust us, we will handle it well.” The sad fact is that I do not believe that the Professional Clergy Class (of all Brands) give a flying flip what anyone thinks except their peers. Thankfully, there are faithful ministers of the Gospel out there.

  194. Deb wrote:

    his book Doctrine of Sin

    The man wrote a book on sin. Which makes this whole sad chapter in church history even sadder.

    On R.C. Sproul’s website, the book is promoted with the following endorsement: “Campbell’s book is probably the best one-volume introduction to the biblical doctrine of sin for contemporary readers. He deals with all aspects of the doctrine.”

    Sadly, Campbell dealt with the jots and tittles of doctrine but not the reality of sin in his life. The consequences leading to his death have disillusioned so many folks familiar with his writings and ministry. That’s what the enemy of the Cross of Christ does when he’s done with you.

  195. Gram3 wrote:

    The sad fact is that I do not believe that the Professional Clergy Class (of all Brands) give a flying flip what anyone thinks except their peers.

    Unfortunately, that’s the track record.

  196. Gram3 wrote:

    it is difficult to keep going back to the dry well of “trust us, we will handle it well.”

    By now, church folks ought to be wise to this scheme. The greatest prayer need in the pew is for a new measure of discernment.

  197. Dave A A wrote:

    I fear another factor making it worse is simply Ministry as Career. The poor man had apparently been set on ministering since age 14 and was “good” at it. Asking for help might have very large career consequences — even if allegations were all untrue and other problems drove him to despair.

    I think this is a key part of the picture. A man with a Plan who has a weakness that is incompatible with the Plan and which will ultimately explode the Plan which has merged with the Man.

  198. Christiane wrote:

    My mother’s people include Scots also in the South (NC) and I do know something important, this:
    their dignity in the face of sorrow: worry and grief ‘of the heart, not of the face’, their emotional suffering ‘is endured but not proclaimed’. So much is kept within and that little is shared or said that is about the pain seems more important as a kind of display of strength of character and the ability to endure with a ‘stiff upper lip’. But the pain is there, the depression, the darkness, still. If in community, they cannot express pain, where does it go but deeper within?

    Christiane
    Again, you are generalizing. The Scots tend to use humor to deal with pain and a “stiff upper lip” usually would be applied to the English, not the Scots. I don’t know who you are quoting, but “your mother’s people” don’t make you an expert. I would argue that Campbell was a big fish in a very small pond and that, most likely, had a lot to do with his secret keeping. The even greater scandal is the hagiography which has followed the revelations and suicide.

  199. Max wrote:

    discernment

    Yes, and for the Spiritual Gift of Discernment to be as commonly recognized and used in the church as the Spiritual Gift of Pastor or Shepherd. (1 Corinthians 12:10, Hebrews 5:14, Acts 5:3-6; 16:16-18; 1 John 4:1) and (Ephesians 4:11, Jeremiah 3:15, Acts 20:28, John 10:11-18).

  200. one of the little people wrote:

    I would argue that Campbell was a big fish in a very small pond and that, most likely, had a lot to do with his secret keeping.

    Which addresses the issue raised earlier about why he would opt for this small venue with his big name.

  201. Max wrote:

    Sadly, Campbell dealt with the jots and tittles of doctrine but not the reality of sin in his life. The consequences leading to his death have disillusioned so many folks familiar with his writings and ministry.

    What a terrible legacy he leaves. So many lives have been shattered by sin.

  202. @ Gram3:

    “When trust has been violated so many times by the Professional Clergy Class (of all Brands) in the past, then it is difficult to keep going back to the dry well of “trust us, we will handle it well.” The sad fact is that I do not believe that the Professional Clergy Class (of all Brands) give a flying flip what anyone thinks except their peers.”
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++===

    i have zero confidence that the professional clergy class are capable of handling things in this category well.

    after all, the brass tacks down at the bottom of it all are to perpetuate the institution. Careers and salaries and reputations and the stockpile of acquired power and significance are on the line.

  203. Darlene wrote:

    You would not believe all the Radical Adherents of Patriarchy that came out of the woodwork! It got so bad with the sexist, hateful comments toward women, along with their toxic views of how women should think and submit, submit, submit…..That aI shut down the entire thread. I was concerned for the women who might be reading their comments, who already live in that kind of sub-culture, who would be persuaded to submit to an abusive partner.

    This is what they believe the Bible teaches. Not because they’ve done their own reading and used their own critical thinking skills, but because they are taught to accept what the pulpit honcho says without question. In those circles (both Reformed and Arminian, they’re kissin’ cousins really), to not accept it is to be suspect that you’re quite possibly:
    not saved
    not truly one of the elect
    not really a believer who “knows the Lord”
    Any one of those three is enough to strike fear into even the most intrepid of heart (in those circles) about where you’ll spend eternity.

  204. @ one of the little people:

    Thank you for addressing that issue. This idea of depressed and torn with inner darkness and such does not fit the historical reality that of the three major groups that settled the mountains here it was the colorful and independent Scots who gave us the culture of fiddle and other stringed instrument music with bluegrass and all its spin offs, clogging, illegal whiskey, car racing and now the highland games. Depressed does not explain that picture. Poverty used to fit the picture for almost everybody in the mountains regardless of national origin, but it is to the Scots that we owe the uniqueness of mountain culture. And whenever we have gone up to MacRae’s Meadow for the highland games we have found them to be incredibly friendly to us as strangers.

    At the games, when the contests are over you begin to hear the music of the pipes while gradually from behind you from all sides pipers begin to appear coming up to the higher ground, and they let the pipes scream and wail to the whole world. such that when they do Amazing Grace with maybe 15 or so pipes you have to stand up, your body won’t even let you just sit there in the midst of that incredible statement about God and man, and the sound that sounds like it challenges the very mountains themselves for supremacy.

    But I will say one bad thing. The whiskey is really nasty. If you can ever get your hands on some, don’t. Just don’t.

  205. JYJames wrote:

    Or not a real man.

    That one can be worked with and negotiated. Fear of hell on the other hand is the best goad and motivator there is.

  206. elastigirl wrote:

    Careers and salaries and reputations and the stockpile of acquired power and significance are on the line.

    That is certainly true. From a purely practical standpoint, however, it would be a very good idea for them to figure out how to deal with situations like these. Dr. Campbell is not the first and he will not be the last.

    Surely someone among these Churchmen saw or heard or knew or suspected something these many years but turned a blind eye or rationalized it when they should have wounded him with the faithful wounds of a friend rather than soothing him with the false kisses of flattery that could only have fanned the flame that ultimately led to this destruction.

    That is what these nobles of the Church should be contemplating. Not what tabloids are publishing. Not what blogs are writing. Not what commenters are writing. They should be looking at one another and asking one another “Did you know anything?” “What did we miss” “What else are we missing?” “How do we change?”

    I do not plan to hold my breath until someone from the Professional Clergy Class (of any Brand) poses any of these questions to anyone flying their team’s flag.

  207. one of the little people wrote:

    Christiane
    Again, you are generalizing. The Scots tend to use humor to deal with pain and a “stiff upper lip” usually would be applied to the English, not the Scots. I don’t know who you are quoting, but “your mother’s people” don’t make you an expert.

    Oh that’s exciting. Where are you in Scotland?

    By the way, I guess it depends on what part of Scotland your people came from and the era that they came to America and Canada.

    I am part Scottish and I think many of the older generations that came to America were part of the “stiff upper lip” crowd like the English.

  208. Gram3 wrote:

    From a purely practical standpoint, however, it would be a very good idea for them to figure out how to deal with situations like these. Dr. Campbell is not the first and he will not be the last.

    After reading a story posted on TWW about a women who was a victim of clergy sexual abuse
    and reading other blogs, many women in these situations have become so depressed that they have contemplated taking their lives.

    I hope that the utmost care will be given to Campbell’s victims, including referrals to professionals who know how to treat them and not novices in the church who will inflict further harm.

  209. @ Gram3:
    You have presented some excellent points to ponder. Surely someone knew something and could have intervened. Such a tragedy. 🙁

  210. ishy wrote:

    You seem to think they only needed grooming after they were found out. That’s not how it works. Serial abusers start grooming the moment they pick a target. They choose targets who they think would let them abuse them, then they choose situations to go after their targets where the target is most vulnerable.

    Sometimes spending YEARS in single-minded grooming of their prey — and third parties as pre-positioned allies, enablers, and enforcers. Plus having to stay Respectable and play the Angel of Light.

    Single-minded, all-consuming concentration on target, deception, and manipulation.
    Twenty chess moves ahead of everyone else.
    That’s why Sociopaths always WIN.

  211. @ Headless Unicorn Guy:

    “..to me, the farther afield from the lowest common denominator of the status quo the better the affirmation)”
    ++++++++++++++

    if i could say it all again, it would be ‘you crack me up, headless!’:)

  212. @ Gram3:

    “That is what these nobles of the Church should be contemplating. Not what tabloids are publishing. Not what blogs are writing. Not what commenters are writing. They should be looking at one another and asking one another “Did you know anything?” “What did we miss” “What else are we missing?” “How do we change?””
    ++++++++++++++++++

    is it a persecution complex?

    since 1993 or so, i’ve gotten the distinct impression from every pastor i’ve been associated with that they see themselves as the unsung heroes. they have it so very rough. that everyone is out to get them. but they are entitled to so much more. and so they band together with their tales of woe and build a kind of brotherhood to make sure they get theirs — an us versus them — all bearing their swords and shields ready to deflect and strike back.

    this huddle, with all these hard metal shields drawn & lining the outside, sort of rotating in a circle, always on guard.

    my impression is that the professional clergy class is so conditioned to think this way, so on edge and ready to strike back since persecution is right at the door, that they do not have access to their other faculties — like sober self-assessment, individually and corporately. even critical thinking.

    a nervousness that is overriding some very important faculties. like sobriety.

    so, what happened in 1993 or thereabouts?

  213. @ elastigirl:

    actually, with some i think this nervous persecution complex has morphed into not a king complex (because peasants can still revolt), but a god complex. the peasants are no longer of any consequence.

  214. I just submitted this comment at “Tragedy in Lewis – A Pastoral Response” by David Robertson https://theweeflea.com/2017/03/07/tragedy-in-lewis-a-pastoral-response/
    … and am putting it here as it may never see the light of day there.

    David, you said, ” I don’t know what happened and I don’t want to know”.

    The “I don’t want to know” part really bothers me, because if you don’t want to know what happened, that means you don’t want to know even if the allegations are found to be true by the Presbytery Investigation, and nor would you want to know even if God Himself were to declare the truth of the allegations from heaven.

    It also implies that if the allegations are true, you would not show compassion for the individual who has made the allegations, because, as far as you were concerned, it was none of your business, which would imply to that individual that she ought to just go away quietly and lick her wounds elsewhere, somewhere far from you so her pain doesn’t impinge on you. That’s what your words implied. Maybe you want to reconsider your words.

    I put to you that IS your business as a member of Iain’s denomination to be assured that its leaders are wise and courageous enough to deal with evildoing in the flock and to discipline the evildoers if they have found them in the church. If that is not done in a denomination, the denomination will be even more the fair subject of mockery and scorn from unbelievers. And it will also be in danger of losing its true-Christian members who do not want to remain in a lukewarm compromised-christian institution.

    And the same thing applies to evangelicals around the world.
    I’m a Christian of the Reformed faith from Melbourne Australia. I’m interested in this matter NOT because I have an appetite for salacious gossip, but because now that the allegations have come to light before the world in the media, I want to be assured that they are fully investigated without fear or favour, and eventually I want to be able to easily find out whether the allegations have been pronounced proven or unproven by the Presbytery. And if they are pronounced proven, I want to be assured that the individuals who have committed heinous sin are put out of the church (as the Bible commands in Cor 5:11-13).

    Why do I want that? Not because I’m baying for blood. Nor because I’m indulging in schadefreude. I want it for health of the worldwide evangelical church, and so that the church’s efforts to evangelise unbelievers can be more fruitful.

    If the visible church doesn’t properly investigate allegations such as this, and it if fails to expel heinous sinners from the congregation, unbelievers will continue (very reasonably) to have very good reason to reject Christian’s warnings and exhortations that they need to believe in Jesus Christ — because they will see that the Christian leaders are hypocrites.

    I also put it to you that if the allegations are found to be true, you would need to repent publicly to the individual who had brought forward the allegations, for your rather callous public statement “I don’t want to know if it’s true.” You may not have thought about it from that perspective, so please consider: If the individual making the allegations is telling the truth without any malice or ungodly agenda and is presenting good evidence that Iain was committing grievous and terrible sins — then that individual needs to be treated creditably and with dignity and respect. Not brushed off by senior people in the church (like yourself) telling her, “I don’t want to know.”

    I hope you will reconsider your saying “I don’t want to know”. It smacks of washing your hands of the matter.

  215. ZechZav wrote:

    But he never commented on the fact that Smythe held prayer meetings in the nude, or that the Iwerne Trust were made aware of the abuse in 1982. Nor does he discuss the fact that Justin Welby was, at the very latest, made aware the abuse in 2013. It begs the questions as to why the Iwerne Trust did not report it in 1982

    I am not looking to defend anyone and I do think the Iwerne Trust have a lot of explaining to do. However, Winchester School were also made aware of the abuse in 1982 but the parents of the victims did not want it to be reported to the police. I believe the parents felt a criminal investigation and trial would further harm their children.

    With hindsight, was that the right decision? I would say no. Would it be repeated now? I doubt it. But, by the standards of the time, it was perfectly reasonable, and the well-being of the victims was the motivation.

    The Iwerne Trust might similarly have been requested by the parents not to involve the police. We don’t know. And we must be careful not to judge their actions 35 years ago in the light of our far greater present-day knowledge of abusers and the way they work.

    But I do think they should release their 1982 report and explain why the police were not informed.

  216. @ Barbara Roberts:

    That is a good response, Barbara.

    My only problem with the “putting out of the church” part is that this has always been used as a weapon against victims. I have never seen it used against perpetrators, despite what the Bible calls for.

    These church leaders who “don’t want to know” are given the “power of the keys” (excommunication and shunning)? No thanks.

    I have already seen that nightmare at work.

    I would honestly support a change in the laws: making it a crime for clergy to have sexual relationships with congregants, just like it’s a crime for doctors, lawyers, and therapists to have sex with their patients/clients.

  217. @ Barbara Roberts:

    Barbara, your comment is a well reasoned, honest, necessary and compassionate response. I too was bothered deeply by his statement “I don’t want to know”. In addition, it contradicts and undermines the apparent “investigation” that the report talked about. How can the church be investigating the matter if the leader does not want to know? How can we trust that the investigation will be honest, just and impartial? It just doesn’t add up!

  218. Since 1993 or so, i’ve gotten the distinct impression from every pastor i’ve been associated with that they see themselves as the unsung heroes. they have it so very rough. that everyone is out to get them.

    Perhaps they’re internalizing Paul’s sarcastic rebuke of the believers in Corinth, recorded in chapter 4 of 1 Corinthians, and applying it to themselves. They see themselves as Paul, the hard-working, persecuted, vagabond apostle. This despite the fact that they might have much more in common with the Corinthian believers — who were privileged enough to become cliquish and frivolously litigious, and hadn’t suffered anything close to what Paul had.

  219. Lowlandseer wrote:

    In a final response to what Dee has said and your “Brava!”I will only ask that you both/ all read in full what David Robertson wrote.

    I did read it all. In my mind, it’s little more than a long-winded version of the “don’t talk” rule. A means of shutting down conversation and critical thought on painful topics, and shutting down has never been helpful in achieving justice or promoting accountability.

    I have to agree with Barbara Roberts here. If Robertson were a layman and wanted to stick his fingers in his ears and go “La, la, la”, that’d be his affair. But as a minister, it’s irresponsible. And it’s unconscionable for him to instruct believers that this is the only proper Christian response. This congregation needs to know what went wrong.

  220. @ Serving Kids in Japan:

    It's deeply disturbing that Robertson is a senior figure in the Church of Scotland. In my correspondence with him he was singularly focused on damage limitation and protecting the reputation of the Archbishop and other senior figures in the Church of England. He doesn't show any empathy or concern for the victims.

  221. 10. Ministry is hard. And it’s often especially hard for the manse family. The pressures and temptations come thick and fast

    Nonsense. This attitude causes more ministers to run around with people and excuse the ones who do. I guarantee you any man having an affair or multiple affairs is doing so because he wants to. Stop this nonsense.

    11. Everyone becomes a self-appointed moralist and expert. The enemies of the Gospel mock – ‘Where is your God now?’ Or to be more precise, where is your Calvinist theology now?

    ‘Self-appointed moralist”? I’m sorry, is there some universe where Christians are NOT supposed to ” teach or promotes morality”??? How can we help but notice if the ones who are doing it are not living up to their own standards, even a little bit.

    Sorry I haven’t had a chance to read the comments yet, but I was wondering about the wife wanting to go after the women involved, but if that was a response to the church going after her it makes more sense.

  222. Jack wrote:

    But having worked in a mental health facility, I can tell you that even with all the precautions in the world, a person bent on suicide is hard to stop.

    True, but he should have at least been on a one to one at the hospital! Dee is right, they need to review their precautions.

  223. @ ZechZav:
    Would Robertson have reacted differently if Campbell were a married woman clergy leader involved with seven men outside of her marriage?

  224. Ian wrote:

    I am not looking to defend anyone and I do think the Iwerne Trust have a lot of explaining to do. However, Winchester School were also made aware of the abuse in 1982 but the parents of the victims did not want it to be reported to the police. I believe the parents felt a criminal investigation and trial would further harm their children.
    With hindsight, was that the right decision? I would say no. Would it be repeated now? I doubt it. But, by the standards of the time, it was perfectly reasonable, and the well-being of the victims was the motivation.

    As I have not been a parent in that situation I will tread carefully. I can understand that but I also would have difficulty with the fact that the abuser has not faced justice. I would agree that it was not the right decision because he was free to keep abusing and many victims were added to the list in the following decades.

  225. JYJames wrote:

    @ ZechZav:
    Would Robertson have reacted differently if Campbell were a married woman clergy leader involved with seven men outside of her marriage?

    It’s hard to say as this has not happened and I don’t know what Robertson’s view is on women priests. If he follows church tradition against women priests (patriarchy/complimentarianism/nonsense) then it would not even get to that point in the first place.

  226. ZechZav wrote:

    I would agree that it was not the right decision because he was free to keep abusing and many victims were added to the list in the following decades.

    Indeed, it has taken time for society (community members, law enforcement, judiciary process, church hierarchy) to evolve to where we confront our pillars of the community doing harm to children. The predatory pillars are probably more aware of this than everyone else. For example, the MO of move on, leave a trail of victims, has seemed to work well for them.

  227. Serving Kids in Japan wrote:

    Perhaps they’re internalizing Paul’s sarcastic rebuke of the believers in Corinth, recorded in chapter 4 of 1 Corinthians, and applying it to themselves. They see themselves as Paul, the hard-working, persecuted, vagabond apostle. This despite the fact that they might have much more in common with the Corinthian believers — who were privileged enough to become cliquish and frivolously litigious, and hadn’t suffered anything close to what Paul had.

    Excellent comment.

  228. @ Barbara Roberts:
    “I don’t know what happened and I don’t want to know.” (David Robertson, “Tragedy in Lewis – A Pastoral Response”)

    Which, of course, is not a “pastoral” response! The pew – in Scotland and beyond- is trying to come to grips with this sad situation and you need to know that. All God’s children are priests, all believers are in ministry. When Paul said the following, he had them in mind, too:

    “We beseech you, brethren, to know them which labor among you … And to esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake” (1 Thessalonians 5:12-13)

    When church leaders only rally to the side of fallen peers, ignoring the hurting Body of Christ, they are not fulfilling the role of pastor. Selective love is not love at all; Christ’s love was not extended only to those who had a professional resume.

  229. JYJames wrote:

    ZechZav wrote:

    I would agree that it was not the right decision because he was free to keep abusing and many victims were added to the list in the following decades.

    Indeed, it has taken time for society (community members, law enforcement, judiciary process, church hierarchy) to evolve to where we confront our pillars of the community doing harm to children. The predatory pillars are probably more aware of this than everyone else. For example, the MO of move on, leave a trail of victims, has seemed to work well for them.

    This is exactly what I meant by the standards of the time (ie 1982).

    Back then, we didn’t know (1) that anyone can be an abuser, (2) abusers keep abusing, and (3) abuse has devastating life-long consequences for the victim.

    Hence child abuse is taken vastly more seriously now than it was in the past. I don’t think a parent today would not want to involve the police in a case of abuse.

  230. http://bit.ly/2nsDOyT

    A Reader’s comment following the Sun article, featuring: Rev James Maciver Writes Tribute To Dr Campbell:

    “This is the same minister who seventeen years ago argued that fellow ministers who argued that allegations of serious sexual improprieties on the part of one of his senior colleagues should be investigated [and] should themselves be expelled from the Church. Over twenty of them were expelled, in 2000 but the subject of those allegations never dealt with.”

  231. JYJames wrote:

    In this video, notice how the speaker, Campbell, massages his own hands and holds his own hands, throughout.

    Extreme stress.

    “When you are stressed there will be more rubbing of the hands together (self massaging or “pacifying”) which will increase in frequency and force commensurate with the stress. When things are really stressful, you will rub your hands together with fingers stretched out and interlaced (Teepee Hands). A behavior we reserve for when things are really bad.” (Joe Navarro, Body Language of the Hands: What the hands say is often louder than words!” Psychology Today)

  232. Ian wrote:

    I would say he just had a weakness for women.

    I would say he had zero respect for women, and zero respect for marriage. What a way to teach by example!

  233. @ Max:
    Turn off the sound. Looks miserable, creepy or insecure hands. Body language is complete mismatch with the message – as the lifestyle, now known, was also a mismatch.

  234. Max wrote:

    The greatest prayer need in the pew is for a new measure of discernment.

    Not only prayer for discernment, but attention, envolvment, and courage – especially when those things are rejected by church leadership.

  235. @ JYJames:
    @ JYJames:
    very bad setting for such a fractured integrity: the Western Isles would seem to best be the home of those whose lives were lived with contentment and the thankfulness for the peace in that contentment

    he was too needy for that place

  236. Barbara Roberts wrote:

    The “I don’t want to know” part really bothers me,

    My question is, would they say the same thing and handle it the same way if it were a mere pew peon facing the same allegations as Campbell? That statement makes me wonder if certain people already knew about Cambell’s activities, and were already turning a blind eye.

  237. Nancy2 wrote:

    Not only prayer for discernment, but attention, involvement, and courage – especially when those things are rejected by church leadership.

    Indeed! Discernment should always act … that’s why God gives it to us … and only to those who will respond to what they hear and see. And sometimes that involves moving beyond church leadership to expose or to protect. Watchmen on the wall who are silent enable the enemy.

  238. @ Lea:
    The incident should be fully investigated, in our jurisdiction the medical examiner would call an inquest.
    I wasn’t there but it depends on how he was admitted. Folks like this (both him & his wife) are not known to be forthcoming. Appearances matter. Depending on what the hospital was told, it may have been initially presented as an accidental overdose. This man deceived a lot of people (allegedly). If he could convince a community, he could play a medical interview. He was a respectable pastor. The staff may not have known what we know now. But that would need to be sorted out through an investigation.

  239. @ Nancy2:
    I guess people feel that ‘what they don’t know won’t hurt them’, but in cases like this, it’s more like what they don’t know can REALLY hurt them.

    I wait for a cancer diagnosis: do I WANT to know if I have it? NO WAY;
    but I must take the responsibility to find out if it exists and then seek the proper treatment for it or I am in DENIAL and the end scene is worse than the false peace of not knowing . . . .

    if there is a cancer in the Church, people need to know about it and then they need to be responsible to take action to do what is right, even if it IS hard and painful to deal with it, yes

  240. Max wrote:

    Watchmen on the wall who are silent enable the enemy.

    And watchmen on the wall who are NOT silent get turned into a pile of rocks by those they are protecting.
    “You’re here to Keep Us Comfortable! How Dare You Disturb Us!”

  241. ZechZav wrote:

    @ Serving Kids in Japan:

    It’s deeply disturbing that Robertson is a senior figure in the Church of Scotland. In my correspondence with him he was singularly focused on damage limitation and protecting the reputation of the Archbishop and other senior figures in the Church of England. He doesn’t show any empathy or concern for the victims.

    Where have we seen this before?
    Exact play-by-play?

  242. ZechZav wrote:

    he was singularly focused on damage limitation and protecting the reputation of the Archbishop and other senior figures in the Church of England. He doesn’t show any empathy or concern for the victims.

    Doesn’t he realize???? tht the ONLY way to protect the reputation of the C of E would BE to show empathy and concern for the victims ???

  243. Serving Kids in Japan wrote:
    This congregation needs to know what went wrong.

    I agree but also firmly believe that the leadership need to examine and discover what went wrong – where THEY went wrong. Iian was promoted world-wide, highly exalted, set up as a Godly example.

    They should WANT to perform this due-diligence.

    How did they miss his great character flaw (immorality, alleged criminal behavior) that has ruined his family (his children will NEVER get over their father’ suicide – I know – mine did this when I was 12), as well as the families of the women? How can they set up parameters to avoid a recurrence? What other pastors might currently be living in sin with families and congregations in need of assistance?

    THEIR neglect of oversight caused this man to lose his life, his wife a husband, his children a father. They do NOT have the moral right to say, “I don’t want to know.”

    BTW: I don’t think he had “affairs.” I think he was a predator that used his position of power and trust as a pastor to fulfill his wickedness.

  244. And the church people are blaming the widow …… poor boy had such an unhappy home life. Isn’t that the same thing as saying, “The devil made me do it!”, and then getting a free pass?
    (PS – if there was an unhappy home life, did IC contribute to the unhappiness, or maybe even cause it?)

  245. Gram3 wrote:

    A man with a Plan who has a weakness that is incompatible with the Plan and which will ultimately explode the Plan which has merged with the Man.

    Too true!

  246. Nancy2 wrote:

    discernment

    As I see it, “discernment” really comes in two flavors. There is a supernatural gift of discernment imparted to some … and there is a discernment that comes naturally through simple observation. Much of the latter is just keeping your eyes and ears open to what is going on around you. In the case of the matter at hand, I find it hard to believe that a minister on a tiny island of only 20,000 people could have seven affairs and a child out of wedlock, as alleged, without someone discerning and acting on that information. Or did they know and remain silent for fear of touching the anointed? Was Pastor Campbell’s professional reputation really worth protecting to not intervene for the better good of the church? Was there not a discerning pastor friend in the ministry who could also double as a prophet to shout “You are the man!” into his life and bring a better end to this?

    As some have noted on this blog, there is so much we don’t know. So we are left to deal with what we do know. “Something” was going on to cause him to end his life the way he did. His family, the local church, and the church at large have become victims of a sort for the “something” in his life. It appears at this point that those who are called by God and remain called by God in all that they do are becoming rare and endangered species.

  247. Max wrote:

    In the case of the matter at hand, I find it hard to believe that a minister on a tiny island of only 20,000 people could have seven affairs and a child out of wedlock, as alleged, without someone discerning and acting on that information

    I would agree. But, on the other hand, if it was married women he slept with, they would have to admit adultery on their part. And what woman wants to do that? Remember that the culture on the Isle of Lewis is very conservative – they would probably be blamed for leading a “godly” man astray.

  248. @ Serving Kids in Japan:
    Hello there Serving Kids in Japan. Thanks for your support of my comments over at Timothy Hammond’s blog What a hoot that fella is. Just when I think Patriarchy couldn’t get worse…..

  249. It does strike me that there are similarities between Iain Campbell and John Smyth. Both were conservative evangelicals, both were in situations outside of mainstream society (*), both were highly respected individuals, both were in patriarchal settings, and both preached a message of turning from sin. And both had a secret dark side that remained hidden for decades. Fascinating!

    Can anyone think of anything else they had in common?

    * Campell was on an offshore island with a unique culture, Smyth was in the elite boarding school system

  250. Nancy2 wrote:

    (PS – if there was an unhappy home life, did IC contribute to the unhappiness, or maybe even cause it?)

    Nope. If there’s any shortcomings, these boyz are only interested in the little woman’s shortcomings.

  251. Max wrote:

    I find it hard to believe that a minister on a tiny island of only 20,000 people could have seven affairs and a child out of wedlock, as alleged, without someone discerning and acting on that information.

    At times, polite society is super polite. Superficial living is an iron-clad veneer. Can be shocking, eye-opening, mind-blowing, an awakening to what is really happening in plain sight, just beneath the facade.

    There was that guy in a Disneyland village in Austria who had his daughter imprisoned in his basement for many years, fathered children with her, etc., and even his wife and on-site renters did not have a clue – extreme cover-up.

  252. Max wrote:

    there is so much we don’t know. So we are left to deal with what we do know.

    Right. For example, I’m unclear whether the 7 alleged other women are members of that particular church or members of churches in that particular denomination or members of related denominations or what exactly. He traveled a lot. It may be more complicated than 7 women in a small church in a small community.

    Also, I am no completely sold on the clergy abuse thing since we do not know who these women are. The tabloids say they have retained lawyers which may mean church lawyers for the church proceedings. Perhaps they are wives of other clergy. That would make it even more imperative to keep a tight lid on it, and it would explain why the church was motivated to keep it so secret all these years. Yes, this is all speculation because no facts have been released. There were probably more than 7 women who would have been willing to be “close” to such a spiritual star. That, IMO, is not victim-blaming but assigning Personal Responsibility which I understand is so yesterday.

  253. Darlene wrote:

    Thanks for your support of my comments over at Timothy Hammond’s blog.

    No problem, Darlene. I might post a few more choice words over there, if time allows. (And if Hammond lets ’em through. 😉 )

  254. ZechZav wrote:

    It’s deeply disturbing that Robertson is a senior figure in the Church of Scotland.

    That would be the Free COS, AKA Wee Frees– hence Robertson’s blog name Wee Flea (split 1843). Not to be confused with the Free Presbyterian COS or Wee Wee Frees (split 1893), the Associated Presbyterian Churches, which I’ll dub Wee Wee Wee Frees (split from Wee Wee Frees 1989 when they church-disciplined Lord Mackay of Clashfern for attending the funeral of a Catholic judge), or the Free COS (Continuing) which I’ll now dub the Wee Wee Wee All the Way Home Frees. As I mentioned before, the Wee Wee Wee All the Way Home Frees split from the Wee Frees in 2000 after the Wee Frees failed to investigate or discipline professor Donald MacLeod, who’d been cleared of several “indecency” (sexual harassment) charges. Then there’s the Reformed Presbyterian Church of Scotland which claims unbroken descent from John Knox and therefore never split from anybody.
    All 5 have congregations in Stornoway (pop 6000) along with a small reformed Baptist group and a brave handful of unreformed groups such as Catholic, Episcopal, or Pentecostal.
    Now to finish setting the table– 10 minutes out of town and a mere stone’s throw from each other are the villages of Point and Knock. Dr Campbell ministered at Point Wee Free which split with Knock Wee Free circa 1970. Virtually his last accomplishment on earth was helping them reconcile. He failed, however, to reconcile them with Point and Knock Wee Wee Wee All the Way Home. Maybe in another 30 years…
    I hope this is helpful.

  255. JYJames wrote:

    Max wrote:

    I find it hard to believe that a minister on a tiny island of only 20,000 people could have seven affairs and a child out of wedlock, as alleged, without someone discerning and acting on that information.

    At times, polite society is super polite. Superficial living is an iron-clad veneer. Can be shocking, eye-opening, mind-blowing, an awakening to what is really happening in plain sight, just beneath the facade.

    In my experience, Sociopaths are normally Oh-So-POLITE.

    Just another weapon to Manipulate the prey.

  256. Max wrote:

    (Joe Navarro, Body Language of the Hands: What the hands say is often louder than words!” Psychology Today)

    Curious: Has anyone applied this analysis to John Piper’s Jazz Hands?

  257. Lowlandseer wrote:

    @ Bridget:
    I can say it because it is true. The church has declared what it will do and it will do it. A strange concept, I know. Who would believe that there are people of the Book, who are also people of their word?

    This attitude reminds me of the folks who say: “The Bible says it, I believe it, that settles it.”. They cannot think outside the confines of their narrowly defined doctrine. Like the Ken Ham YEC crowd, the Quiverfuls, Wilson in the Moscow Kirk, Scientology, etc. Blind trust is not a good thing especially when it comes to trusting those who have given us reason not to trust them. Christian Echo Chambers serve only to keep people fenced in, in order to ignore any cognitive dissonance that might be lingering around.

  258. Lowlandseer wrote:

    @ Bridget:
    I can say it because it is true. The church has declared what it will do and it will do it. A strange concept, I know. Who would believe that there are people of the Book, who are also people of their word?

    Yes, the same ones who allowed a lying, hypocritical, serial adulterer to command their ship and preach in the name of God for decades? That’s the church we should trust to keep their word, hell or high water? Sir, you’re daft if you think that’s a crowd that should be trusted to get to the bottom of things and keep their word. I used to work in a profession known for lies, I teach white collar crime and sundry fraud courses, have heard my share of lies and have become intimately acquainted with the liars and con artists who told them. Sir, you are tripping a few red flags here, dare I say.

  259. Gram3 wrote:

    @ Dave A A:
    Is there a diagram of this somewhere for those of us who have working memory limits?

    Wiki has one.

  260. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Dave A A wrote:

    In researching my previous comment I came upon this most interesting link, which y’all need to click within the next few hours or else wait until next week.
    http://www.fpchurch.org.uk/we-are-closed-for-the-sabbath/

    Very Pious, that link.
    With almost every word and sentence (“…what the World calls “Sunday”…)

    Better wait until tomorrow for your ox to fall into a pit.

    I have a feeling that I’ve already broken one of their Sabbath Rules. A recollection of something I read a while back comes to mind. The children in these Scottish Presbyterian Sabbath-keeping communities were forbidden from laughing and playing on the Lord’s Day. My grandmother was from a strict German Baptist background where reading newspapers, going to the movie house, listening to the radio/victrola, shopping – were frowned upon on the Lord’s Day. This crowd must have been a barrel of laughs….Not!

  261. Serving Kids in Japan wrote:

    I have to agree with Barbara Roberts here. If Robertson were a layman and wanted to stick his fingers in his ears and go “La, la, la”, that’d be his affair. But as a minister, it’s irresponsible. And it’s unconscionable for him to instruct believers that this is the only proper Christian response. This congregation needs to know what went wrong.

    One thing I wish to correct: there is no distinction anymore between layman and minister. We’re all priests now and there is but one high priest, Jesus. However, if you wish to hold him to the higher standard of one who thinks they have the standing to teach others about the truth of Christ and right Christian behavior, then I agree entirely.

  262. Max wrote:

    @ Barbara Roberts:
    “I don’t know what happened and I don’t want to know.” (David Robertson, “Tragedy in Lewis – A Pastoral Response

    It’s a fearful thing to consider what might be lurking beneath the religious facade. Move along….There’s nothing to see here.

  263. Nancy2 wrote:

    Ian wrote:

    I would say he just had a weakness for women.

    I would say he had zero respect for women, and zero respect for marriage. What a way to teach by example!

    From watching that video, I wonder if he carried that “women should be silent” into all aspects of life. Women keeping silent is advantageous to an adulteror.

  264. Darlene wrote:

    From watching that video, I wonder if he carried that “women should be silent” into all aspects of life. Women keeping silent is advantageous to an adulteror.

    Ergo, blame the wife, who refused to obey and remain silent,

  265. I know definitive evidence has not yet been provided, but I lean hard in the direction of believing Mrs. Campbell. The timing is just too indicative of IC’s guilt. I am inclined to believe that Mrs. Campbell was about to go public and expose him……. the truth would have ruined him and made a mockery of everything he pretended taught. What were his options? If what his wife claims is true, he had no out.

  266. siteseer wrote:

    Darlene wrote:
    Max wrote:
    “We are all within an inch of succumbing to the delusion that it is possible to be one thing in one context and something else in another. The real danger lies in the deception that whispers that we are safe behind the mask of hypocrisy.” (Ian Campbell, Hypocrisy in High Places)
    Oh my, he was talking about himself!
    That is actually rather chilling.

    I think I mentioned ‘duping delight’ before, but this kind of reminds me of that. Some people get a kick out of lying and being believed.

  267. Gram3 wrote:

    @ Dave A A:
    Is there a diagram of this somewhere for those of us who have working memory limits?

    LOL. Just know that the adage split P’s is a term given to describe the Presbyterian Church. I wouldn’t be surprised that even now, somewhere out there a Presby church is in the process of splitting from another Presby church.

  268. Christiane wrote:

    By the time someone commits suicide, generally they are at the end of a long isolated sad journey into the darkness.

    Actually, many people, men especially, do this in responsible to an event, such as loss of a relationship. This is very common. I don’t know if he was responding to loss of relationship or loss which he assumed would be coming of status, reputation, etc. People also commit suicide in response to medical changes. It’s not always someone who has been consistently depressed.

  269. Gram3 wrote:

    Gram3 wrote:

    @ Dave A A:
    Is there a diagram of this somewhere for those of us who have working memory limits?

    Wiki has one.

    No doubt it’s a work in progress as one split ‘p’ continues to split from another slot ‘p’.

  270. JYJames wrote:

    http://bit.ly/2nsDOyT

    A Reader’s comment following the Sun article, featuring: Rev James Maciver Writes Tribute To Dr Campbell:

    “This is the same minister who seventeen years ago argued that fellow ministers who argued that allegations of serious sexual improprieties on the part of one of his senior colleagues should be investigated [and] should themselves be expelled from the Church. Over twenty of them were expelled, in 2000 but the subject of those allegations never dealt with.”

    For a full account of what took place in 2000 and the involvement of David Robertson and Iain D. Campbell read http://www.freechurchcontinuing.org/images/books/pdf/when-justice-failed.pdf.It's a lengthy document but very informative.

  271. @ Lea:
    I would say, other than a medically-related assisted suicide, that most suicides are not the acts of people who are completely compos mentis.

  272. Gram3 wrote:

    @ Dave A A:
    Is there a diagram of this somewhere for those of us who have working memory limits?

    I found this one. http://www.christianstogether.net/Images/content/658/491754.JPG
    The associated article dealing with whether newfangled inventions like hymns and instruments are allowable in worship is informative as well.
    Other confusing diagrams available under Google images; chart Scottish Presbyterianism
    IMO the split most applicable to our topic is the 2000 one, which took place after Campbell and Robertson were already ministering in the Free Church, and was precipitated at least in part by the denomination’s failure to investigate possible moral failure on the part of one of their most prominent leaders. Which makes one reluctant “Trust the Church” as Robertson asks (LOVE how he capitalizes Church, when he means his tiny denomination!)

  273. Lea wrote:

    I think I mentioned ‘duping delight’ before, but this kind of reminds me of that. Some people get a kick out of lying and being believed.

    Like Elron Hubbard playing “Can I Top Myself?” getting more and more outrageous with his “Tech” (Scientology Doctrines), seeing how over-the-top he could get and still have his followers swallow it (they did).

  274. Darlene wrote:

    . The children in these Scottish Presbyterian Sabbath-keeping communities were forbidden from laughing and playing on the Lord’s Day.

    like chaining the swings up in the playground …. when people go to those lengths to ‘honor’ God, it gets a bit obsessive and controlling

  275. Darlene wrote:

    This attitude reminds me of the folks who say: “The Bible says it, I believe it, that settles it.”.

    Christianese for “IT IS WRITTEN! IT IS WRITTEN! IT IS WRITTEN!”

    They cannot think outside the confines of their narrowly defined doctrine.

    An ex-Army Intel guy told me once about working in-country in Iraq. How no matter how educated or reasonable or Westernized the locals he dealt with seemed, there was a point in their minds beyond which he could not go; whenever he did, he said he could see “the wall in their mind slam down”, after which there was only “IT IS WRITTEN! IT IS WRITTEN! IT IS WRITTEN!”

  276. Nancy2 wrote:

    The timing is just too indicative of IC’s guilt.

    I concur.
    Very likely he “checked out” in reaction to imminent exposure.

    Suicide in such a situation has been called both “Death before Dishonor” and “the coward’s way out”.

    I am inclined to believe that Mrs. Campbell was about to go public and expose him……. the truth would have ruined him and made a mockery of everything he pretended taught. What were his options? If what his wife claims is true, he had no out.

    Or he was reacting to Mrs.C finding out and confronting him, regardless of whether she was “about to go public and expose him”. Just knowing that she knew might have been enough. Maybe he figured that if she knew, regardless of whether she went public or not, others would also know. One way or another, the jig was up.

  277. Barbara Roberts wrote:

    I also put it to you that if the allegations are found to be true, you would need to repent publicly to the individual who had brought forward the allegations, for your rather callous public statement “I don’t want to know if it’s true.” You may not have thought about it from that perspective, so please consider: If the individual making the allegations is telling the truth without any malice or ungodly agenda and is presenting good evidence that Iain was committing grievous and terrible sins — then that individual needs to be treated creditably and with dignity and respect. Not brushed off by senior people in the church (like yourself) telling her, “I don’t want to know.”

    Barbara,

    Knowing that you are an advocate for women abused in churches I would ask you to read if you have time the book “When justice failed in church and State”. There is pdf document of it on this site http://www.freechurchcontinuing.org/images/books/pdf/when-justice-failed.pdf.

    It outlines what took place in 2000 in the Free Church of Scotland: how women who came forward with serious allegations were treated and what happened to the men with integrity in the church, who defended them.

  278. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    the truth would have ruined him and made a mockery of everything he pretended taught. What were his options? If what his wife claims is true, he had no out.

    but that is not the act of a sane person: in order to save himself, he kills himself? in order to save himself from ruin, he hangs himself?

    or maybe Campbell WAS a ‘true believer’ doing battle internally with that ‘wolf’ part of himself that could not be controlled and was being destructive to others …. so in order to stop the destruction, he ended his life because he saw no other way out of abusing people …. so he did away with the ‘wolf’ part of him that hurt others …. ‘course that meant the faithful Campbell respected pastor had to die also, but in his mind, perhaps that was the honorable thing to do rather than continuing in sin as the wolf nature grew more malevolent?

    My imagination can really get going sometimes …. but brainstorming can be creative and this is a mystery as well as a tragedy. Given the setting, the dramatic nature of what unfolded, these events on the Isle of Lewis honestly would read like fiction, if only so many real people’s lives weren’t shattered by what happened.

  279. Remnant wrote:

    BTW: I don’t think he had “affairs.” I think he was a predator that used his position of power and trust as a pastor to fulfill his wickedness.

    I think when a man cheats on his wife (with an adult, not a rape) I would consider it an affair on his side of things. He cheated. That’s what an affair is. That does not mean that he can not at the same time be considered predatory.

  280. Christiane wrote:

    @ Lea:
    I would say, other than a medically-related assisted suicide, that most suicides are not the acts of people who are completely compos mentis.

    I’m pretty sure most people in the mental health field would disagree with you.

  281. @ Headless Unicorn Guy:
    It’s not like, if their website falls in a pit on sabbath, they’d be required to have an IT person to work to fix it. It could just stay down there until Monday.
    But no… the website has to rest on sabbath just like people!

  282. @ Dave A A:
    Plus, technically speaking, isn’t the the website still working by showing a picture of the Bible and explaining why it’s closed? Or people who happen to read the explanation are working by doing so…. Should just display a big 404 NOT FOUND…..

  283. @ Lea:

    I don’t know Lea. Pondering.

    This man, if he was guilty as accused, sounds like he had his flings with church women – thus his wife seeking to have these women expelled from church. If he used his influence over them as their leader/head (some sort of power) to get them to acquiesce, then I would consider him a predator.

    Perhaps it comes down to his motives, which may never be known.

    And these women – are they victim or participants? I have a difficult time understanding how 7 women would willingly participate with this one man if he wasn’t exerting influence over them in some manner.

    In my world, affairs just aren’t that common. (Though my father was embroiled in one at the time he took his life and I have been led to understand that this was one of many. That was decades ago.)

    Maybe I should realize my views are naturally skewed due to personal history and button my mouth and withhold judgements. Yeah, doing that now.

  284. So is it wrong to visit your honeys on the Sabbath? I’m not clear on the rules.

    There is a lot we don’t know. If he merely had 7 one-night-stands over the course of 20 years, that’s one thing. If they were long-term affairs, and overlapped, with promises of marriage and manipulation… That’s something else.

    Then again, it probably doesn’t matter to his wife, and this poor child that he fathered.

  285. This is a very personal testimony – I was 12 when my father took his life. We had been in synagogue for Friday evening services – an unusual event as we rarely attended Shabbat services – when he looked at me with an expression of great deep sorrow. At the time, I did not understand it, though I knew it was of importance. I didn’t have the words or wherewithal to question him. I remember the intensity of that look to this day.

    It was on Sunday that he ended his life. My hindsight has always been that he went to services to seek something – but that his mind was made up and the glance at me was one of sorrow and regret. He felt stuck and saw no other way out.

    The sorrow and regret wasn’t enough to stop him, I, by virtue of being his daughter, wasn’t enough for him to derail his decision. He thought more of his own discomfort and confusion than he did about his family and children who were so young.

    He left behind a note of excuse – that he loved two women (though he reportedly had many affairs prior to this last serious one). I vacillate between compassion and anger, lo these many decades later. I think that’s natural but still it is unsettling.

    What was Iian thinking? That he was stuck? That his sin found him out? That his reputation would be ruined? That he hated himself? Maybe or maybe not. Unless he left his family a note, there will always be speculation and confusion for those left behind.

    What he wasn’t thinking about were his children. Not when he made his final decision and not months and years before when he started down the path of infidelity and immorality.

    This changes a child so profoundly. The being set apart. The knowing that you weren’t enough. Ever. It hangs over your life. A gift that keeps giving.

    It stinks.

    Yet, through it all, I’ve learned to trust in Jesus.

  286. @ Velour:

    Glasgow and I don’t live there anymore. I think what you are describing is the effects of Presbyterianism.

  287. Dave A A wrote:

    It’s not like, if their website falls in a pit on sabbath, they’d be required to have an IT person to work to fix it. It could just stay down there until Monday.
    But no… the website has to rest on sabbath just like people!

    Ha! Isn’t it just as sinful to make your automobile work on the sabbath, by hauling you to church? And what about wives and mothers – Shouldn’t dirty dishes and dirty diapers wait until Monday, too???

  288. [Have you noticed that Remnant has refrained from commenting on the Sabbath/Sunday and working/resting issues? Someone give Remnant chocolate.]

  289. … because if someone wants to believe that the Sabbath is on the first day of the week instead of the seventh, and that the Lord expects the Church to follow it even though it was given to the Jews through Moses and that Law is obsolete now, with whatever rules they deem necessary, and they don’t understand how Jesus is our Sabbath rest now, they have the right to do so (even if it drives me batty that they would call it the Sabbath and make their own day and rules) ….

    I really need chocolate but think I just forfeited my right to enjoy some tonight. Smile.

  290. Remnant wrote:

    [Have you noticed that Remnant has refrained from commenting on the Sabbath/Sunday and working/resting issues? Someone give Remnant chocolate.]

    Your deserve chocolate. I should be put under church discipline, I guess. New, 6-week old puppy …… prolly been sinnin’ somethin’ fierce by trying to housebreak da puppy and cleaning up widdle puddles.

    (Yeah, we adopted a shelter puppy – still miss Amos terribly, but Lizzie and Allie we driving us nuts! We had to adopt sooner than planned to maintain their (and our sanity).)

  291. Nancy – you deserve a medal! Give that sweet puppy time and you’ll have a dear companion. I think I will always have a dog friend in my life.

  292. one of the little people wrote:

    @ Velour:
    Glasgow and I don’t live there anymore. I think what you are describing is the effects of Presbyterianism.

    Glasgow, lovely. My people (great-grandfathers, etc) were from Edinburgh.

    You are so right about the effects of Presbyterianism. They were in that denomination and a somber bunch.

  293. Remnant wrote:

    [Have you noticed that Remnant has refrained from commenting on the Sabbath/Sunday and working/resting issues? Someone give Remnant chocolate.]

    Here, dear. I’ll pass the box.

  294. Remnant wrote:

    … because if someone wants to believe that the Sabbath is on the first day of the week instead of the seventh, and that the Lord expects the Church to follow it even though it was given to the Jews through Moses and that Law is obsolete now, with whatever rules they deem necessary, and they don’t understand how Jesus is our Sabbath rest now, they have the right to do so (even if it drives me batty that they would call it the Sabbath and make their own day and rules) ….

    I really need chocolate but think I just forfeited my right to enjoy some tonight. Smile.

    Remnant, let’s just say that there’s at least one person here who lights candles on Friday night 🙂

  295. Remnant wrote:

    This is a very personal testimony – I was 12 when my father took his life……..

    Yet, through it all, I’ve learned to trust in Jesus.

    I’m sorry that you have had to live with such sorrow. Thank you for bearing your soul in such a personal way.

  296. Darlene wrote:

    Remnant wrote:
    This is a very personal testimony – I was 12 when my father took his life……..
    Yet, through it all, I’ve learned to trust in Jesus.
    I’m sorry that you have had to live with such sorrow. Thank you for bearing your soul in such a personal way.

    Yes, my thoughts exactly Darlene.

    Thank you Remnant for sharing such a painful family story with us.

    I know someone else who went through a similar experience and her (unfaithful) father took his own life.

  297. Nancy2 wrote:

    Shouldn’t dirty dishes and dirty diapers wait until Monday, too???

    Maybe this is just Hollywood…

    … however, it is curious that in the Chariots of Fire film about Eric Liddell, he boldly forfeited his spot in an Olympic competition scheduled on Sunday, but then, (in the film), the men of his Christian Scottish missionary family (dad a pastor) were served by his mother and sisters at the Sunday family feast after church in their Christian home.

    The men sat and chatted theology and their other men’s affairs, while the women were quietly up and down from the table to kitchen, meeting the men’s every need.

  298. Having recently written a blog post on personality disorders among clergy, I am wondering to what extent he may have suffered from a PD or mental illness. While I have great difficulty understanding how these fit in the divine scheme of things, his alleged behavior is so over the top as to suggest larger issues.

    Meanwhile, my heart goes out to his family and friends, and others who loved him

  299. Esther wrote:

    what happened to the men with integrity in the church, who defended them.

    The Big Men were not pleased would be my first guess.

  300. @ Remnant:
    I’m glad you shared your testimony. You have an insight and understanding that most of us do not. Be strong. Stay strong.

  301. JYJames wrote:

    The men sat and chatted theology and their other men’s affairs, while the women were quietly up and down from the table to kitchen, meeting the men’s every need.

    In real life – in my life – men have absolutely no qualms about women staying in the fellowship hall kitchen during church service, setting up for the fellowship meals after services. Then, cleaning up behind 100 people afterwards.

  302. @ Nancy2:
    Right. It’s seems pretty status quo. It’s weird, however, when clergy get up from that table and preach from the pulpit their detailed Sabbath rules.

  303. @ JYJames:
    Anyway, it always kind of bugged about that film, that while the women worker-bees were picking up the slack and making sure their men had every creature comfort on Sundays, the men would sit back and wax profoundly theological about their bold stance on observing the Sabbath, and set the rules, discipline, punishment. (Again, maybe that’s Hollywood – it is a film, after all.)

  304. Remnant wrote:

    Have you noticed that Remnant has refrained from commenting on the Sabbath/Sunday

    I think Jesus the Messiah is our Sabbath Rest and the also the Eighth Day. Which would be Sunday, not the sabbath. So Christians who are observing the sabbath on Sunday are missing the point, IMO, but I’m not going to go all legalistic on them.

    End of derailment.

  305. Remnant wrote:

    a very personal testimony … Yet, through it all, I’ve learned to trust in Jesus.

    Remnant, thank you for sharing your story. You have provided a new perspective to the tragedy on the Isle of Lewis. Dr. Campbell left behind folks who are not only grieving, but struggling to come to grips with this in their individual way. You have reminded us of that and our need to pray for Dr. Campbell’s wife, Anne; his mother, Lily; his sons, Iain and Stephen; his daughter Emily; and his sisters, Margaret and Alma. They will be forever affected. May they all find the same hope to move forward as you did … to trust in Jesus.

  306. @ Remnant:

    Thank you for sharing, Remnant. I am sorry for the pain and loss you have felt for most of your life. I pray that you have, and will continue to, experience the peace that passes understanding in the arms of your God.

  307. Gram3 wrote:

    I’m not going to go all legalistic on them.

    To clarify, I mean I’m not going to be legalistic the way that they are legalistic about sabbath observance. It is not just the Scottish Reformed or just the various Reformed who are picky about things. In my lifetime, people (including children) had to fast overnight before receiving communion in the largest Christian church, and that was not always the most convenient or pleasant experience. Things have changed in lots of churches in the past several decades. We have a long ways to go.

  308. Darlene wrote:

    I think the powers-that-be in that church are in protecting the brand mode

    I wonder if the cover-up has been going on for years. As Gram alluded to earlier, I wonder how someone of prominence can carry on multiple affairs yet keep it secret from all his colleagues. This is no easy matter to keep hidden. If there were enables, their malfeasance likely worsened the consequences.

  309. David wrote:

    Remnant, let’s just say that there’s at least one person here who lights candles on Friday night

    I’m a firm believer in human freedom. Shabbat candles are beautiful! I’m a syncretist at heart and see good things in all religious traditions.

  310. Bill M wrote:

    I wonder how someone of prominence can carry on multiple affairs yet keep it secret from all his colleagues.

    I wonder if some of his colleagues knew, or at least suspected, and kept their mouths shut.

  311. Muff Potter wrote:

    Shabbat candles are beautiful!

    Yes, they are. This cradle roll Baptist had an interesting conversation with one of my grandchildren about why followers of Jesus might reasonably celebrate Hanukkah as Jesus celebrated it.

  312. On the other hand, as Okrapod commented a few threads ago, IIRC, legalism is somewhat in the eye of the beholder. Not her words but my paraphrase. I hope I got that right…

  313. Nancy2 wrote:

    Yeah, we adopted a shelter puppy – still miss Amos terribly, but Lizzie and Allie we driving us nuts! We had to adopt sooner than planned to maintain their (and our sanity

    Congratulations on your new puppy!

  314. Nancy2 wrote:

    (Yeah, we adopted a shelter puppy – still miss Amos terribly, but Lizzie and Allie we driving us nuts! We had to adopt sooner than planned to maintain their (and our sanity).)

    Congratulations, Nancy2! I’ve been thinking about getting another pup, maybe someday. Have you ever tried the umbilical cord method for housetraining? It has worked like a charm for me with a few dogs but I’ve not tried it with a puppy. Wish you many happy years with your new friend.

  315. @ Remnant:

    Remnant, I’m so sorry. I can only imagine the sorrow that has been a part of your life. Suicide is so cruel to the loved ones. I have heard some who came close to it say they were convinced their loved ones would be better off without them, that they thought they were doing the best thing for them. Of course they are not thinking right but it seemed so in their despair. I pray God’s comfort for you, and for all who have lost loved ones to suicide.

  316. Gram3 wrote:

    On the other hand, as Okrapod commented a few threads ago, IIRC, legalism is somewhat in the eye of the beholder. Not her words but my paraphrase. I hope I got that right…

    Paul addressed this in Romans 14 about special days or all days alike. He said toe things: let each one be convinced in his own mind, and also he said whatever you decide to do or not do then do it onto the Lord. In other words Paul preached individual freedom of decision and action.

    That does seem to say that either decision, special days or no special days, may be correct.

    I think ‘that you shall keep this day special in this way’ is a rule (thou shalt) and ‘you ought not be making special rules for special days’ is also a rule (thou shalt not). Either one is legalism.

    We all have rules of ought and ought not. It gets tricky when we try to make other people live by our rules.

  317. My father was required to convert to my mother’s legalistic religion in order to marry. When I was about 16, he stopped attending with us. My mother told me that he did not feel worthy enough to attend. My dad effectively drank himself to death and died when I was 21.

    Legalism destroys lives.

  318. My mother committed an act which resulted in her death. The act was one which she knew would more than likely precipitate a severe asthma attack and there was no discernible reason for her to do the act itself. She had been sick and depressed and angry for a long time. I was there when this occurred. I tried to save her but failed. We did have meds, I administered the meds, she died. Was it suicide? Who knows? Was it some reckless act for some unknown reason? Who knows? Was there more that I could have done? How did I fail to anticipate that this women might commit suicide (and yes I am retaining the transitive verb to describe the act). How did I miss it that she might do something even carelessly? which would lead to death unintentionally? Who knows?

    I was 25 and an RN at the time. Perhaps I should have removed myself from health care as far as the east is from the west, never again put myself in a position where you fail to save the patient. It would have saved me a lot of pain over the years if I had done that. These sorts of experiences leave permanent disabilities in the families of the deceased.

    That said, when the answers to ‘why’ are not know, and when ceasing to live with it is not an option, then the path of one’s thinking must include a severe refusal to place blame where it perhaps ought not be. There is a great temptation when looking at something like suicide and its ramifications to place blame wherever it makes the most pain go away. Blame the deceased person. Blame the circumstances of his/her life. Blame yourself for some real or imagined failure. Blame all the other people who should have realized that this might happen. Blame God. And pertinent to this post and to what Dale has said, blame religion. I have not found that to lead to long term success.

    What I have found is this: To the extent that I failed, and I surely did, then I deliberately forgive myself and determine to be more perceptive in the future. To the extent that perhaps she betrayed us all, I deliberately forgive her. To the extent that there were others who could have helped her, I deliberately forgive them. And to the extent that nobody ever understands this sort of thing until they go through it, I deliberately forgive them as those who can’t help it.

    But don’t anybody ever try to tell me how to feel or think or speak about this. Not then, not now, not ever.

  319. @ Esther:
    Not only did the Church defend Donald Macleod, the State court exonerated him and claimed a conspiracy by the various women. In 2008 MacLeod was given a honorable doctorate of divinity by Westminster Seminary, Philadelphia. The Herald journalist quoted by David Robertson in his article “Tragedy in Lewis” is the son of Donald Macleod. Donald Macleod whose blog is http://www.donaldmacleod.org.uk/dm/ is in the Free Church of Scotland. His son, John, the journalist, is in the Free Presbyterian Church. If any of this is incorrect, please someone correct me.

  320. Remnant wrote:

    Maybe I should realize my views are naturally skewed due to personal history

    Eh, I have my own history on this topic, though not as traumatic as yours. I think our experiences cannot help but inform our view. Generally they add knowledge that other people don’t have.

  321. @ Gram3:
    As to Christian worship on Sunday, the early Church in Jerusalem began to gather on ‘The Day of the Risen Lord’ for worship even before the Church spread out from Jerusalem to the five first centers of Christianity.

    According to tradition, the early Christian people also had the custom of gathering at ‘the empty tomb’ for prayer. I’ll put some info about this over on Discussion Section. 🙂

  322. Godith wrote:

    Not only did the Church defend Donald Macleod, the State court exonerated him and claimed a conspiracy by the various women

    Really? Wow.

  323. Christiane wrote:

    As to Christian worship on Sunday, the early Church in Jerusalem began to gather on ‘The Day of the Risen Lord’ for worship even before the Church spread out from Jerusalem to the five first centers of Christianity.
    According to tradition, the early Christian people also had the custom of gathering at ‘the empty tomb’ for prayer. I’ll put some info about this over on Discussion Section.

    “The early church”….”according to tradition”.

    Argumentum ad antiquitatem aka appeal to common practice and aka appeal to antiquity aka appeal to antiquity is a fallacy.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Appeal_to_tradition

  324. Ian wrote:

    The Iwerne Trust might similarly have been requested by the parents not to involve the police. We don’t know. And we must be careful not to judge their actions 35 years ago in the light of our far greater present-day knowledge of abusers and the way they work.

    I was flabbergasted this weekend when a man I have know for 13 years through a mission I was involved in told me that he had had been molested for 6 years staring at the age of 5 by a woman babysitter. This man, in his late 50s started to cry as he told me how everyone, including his mother, covered it up. Through the years he has dealt with substance abuse, attempting to deal with the pain.

    I am not sure I would agree that it was reasonable for the parents to try to *protect* their children anymore than I think it was reasonable to hold slaves. I believe that parents covered this stuff up to make them feel better as opposed to helping the children not feel better.

    If they were really involved with their kids, throughout the years, I guarantee all of them realized that their children struggled and continue to struggle even today. Many times, I think we are all guilty of making ourselves feel better and making our lives more convenient.

    I am still recuperating from watching a dear man cry during a celebration of an event in his family. His last words to me as I was leaving-
    Tell everyone about this. Make them do something about this.”

  325. dee wrote:

    I am still recuperating from watching a dear man cry during a celebration of an event in his family. His last words to me as I was leaving-
    Tell everyone about this. Make them do something about this.”

    You ARE doing something, DEE.
    What you do is a Christian work of mercy. Putting light on the darkness is a healing thing. That man’s broken-hearted tears have watered a good work in you.

  326. dee wrote:

    I believe that parents covered this stuff up to make them feel better as opposed to helping the children not feel better.

    Amen to that.

  327. @ okrapod:
    I am so, so sorry for the difficulties surrounding your mother’s death. Sometimes, in the midst of an emergency situation, people find it difficult to think through the option. It is an emergency and therefor not planned. This was you mother and I am sure you did the best you could given the situation. I pray the peace of Christi surrounds you as you think back to that difficult time.

  328. Muff Potter wrote:

    Shabbat candles are beautiful! I’m a syncretist at heart and see good things in all religious traditions.

    I have a mezuzah on my door.

  329. @ okrapod:
    and yet the early Christians did light their lamps against the darkness and kept vigil for the Lord’s imminent return;
    still, at every moment, somewhere in the world, people pray and watch 🙂

    that practice is older than the writing of the NT, but something about it must be included in that testament: something about ‘awaiting in hope’ 🙂

  330. @ Remnant:
    I am sp sad for the pain you experienced when you were only 12 years old Suicide has a profound lifelong effect on family members, especially on children.As they light the candles in my church on Saturday night, I will remember you and your family in prayer.

  331. Remnant wrote:

    Perhaps it comes down to his motives, which may never be known.

    A former pastor once said-“Even on my best days, my motives are mixed.” That is why I have given up tying to figure out motives and merely try to figure out the actions themselves. Half the time, I can’t even figure out my own motives.

  332. @ Esther:
    I am planning on reading this today. Thank you. This is important since I am planing another post on this situation. I am gathering some info regarding Campbell’s teachings.

  333. For Dale and all whose memories are so very painful, may the Peace of Our Lord come to them in their sadness, that they will carry His peace within themselves on their sojourn.

  334. @ Christiane:

    The issue is this. Of the things mentioned in the NT there are some things which are requirements for today and some things which are merely mentioned but not commanded. The NT talks about feet and sandals, shaking the dust off sandals as a gesture for one and offering arriving guests a bowl of water to wash their feet as the other. There is no command that believers must wear sandals forever and ever amen. Or walk around with dirty feet. Or practice foot washing whenever you invite somebody to dinner.

    The NT mentions believers assembling on the first day of the week, but there is no command that this must be the practice forever and ever. I was taught as a child that the first people doing that were observant sabbath keepers in their religion and that of course they could not break the laws of sabbath to hold christian gatherings. Either way, and whatever was going on at the time, there is nothing in the NT which commands which day and what time and where believers are to meet-forever and ever.

    So, if it is now seen as a hard and fast rule/practice in Christianity can we guess how it got to be considered a hard and fast rule? I can. I can think of more than one variable which contributed to that. Does that mean that we all have to do it now? No. Does it mean that, depending on the current circumstances we may continue to do it? Yes.

  335. Christiane wrote:

    ot the acts of people who are completely compos mentis.

    It is interesting to think about this. One might assume that Campbell understood the Gospel-the real one. This would mean that he understand that we are all sinful, that we all fall and that there is forgiveness even in the worst of situations, providing that there is repentance.

    A former pastor once said that it we understand the Gospel, we should be willing to confess our sins, knowing that we all struggle. Did Iain believe a false Gospel-one that required him to be perfect and not fall like everyone else? That is something I am trying to figure out about him.

    My question-What did Iain Campbell really believe? And, if he understood the limitless grace of Jesus Christi, why did he commit suicide when confronted with his sin?

  336. @ okrapod:
    as I see it, the lighting of a candle is more about love than tradition …. and the thought that a prayer to God takes lives on after we have stopped the praying, as the candle will continue to burn after we leave the Church …. it’s about love, not ‘rules’, nor customs, nor ‘shoulds’ and ‘musts’, at least for me (love, love my candle habit, at least neighbor people know whose house to come to if the area loses electricity and they need some candles :))

  337. Nancy2 wrote:

    What were his options? If what his wife claims is true, he had no out.

    If he believed the Gospel, he did. He would have confessed his sin, made restitution where he could, stepped down from preaching, undergo church discipline and with all humility exhibit the fact that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God

    He could have become a role model for many on how to handle sin as opposed to hiding it. I believe that if he handled it appropriately, he would have been forgiven by many as the observed his repentant life. I would rather follow a broken and humble man that the celebrity, “I’ve got it all together”. types.

    In fact, one of my former pastors who I quote frequently did just that.

  338. @ dee:
    only God may know these things, DEE

    I am so sorry for the victims and the women who are still being persecuted …..

    the thing about sin is that people may choose to commit it willingly but then they can’t control the directions it takes that are destructive to themselves and the people around them

    there is something epic about this whole incident

  339. I have been thinking about this over the weekend. I believe that his wife, Anne, is telling the truth. That is why he chose to die as opposed to stay alive and fight. Also, if there is a child, the DNA will prove paternity.

  340. If we think that people have made mistakes, great or small, shouldn’t we start by caring for them rather than sticking pins in their effigies?

    So far, the ONLY thing that we know for certain is that a man who had been held in high regard throughout his 53 years, and who did an immense amount of good (yes he did!), took his own life, and that very serious accusations have been made against him, evidence for which is so far not available. Shouldn’t we be ultra-careful not to jump to conclusions?

    Shouldn’t ‘non-religious’ people show universal unbiased sympathy and understanding?

    Shouldn’t Christians remember first the love of God and that ‘all have sinned’ including ourselves?

    There’s something revoltingly ‘holier than thou’ about those who take the liberty of pre-judging. Isn’t the claiming of the high ground by harshly accusing others just another form of reckless extremism – the pot calling the kettle black?

    ‘All married women become bitter and spiteful’
    is just as vacuous a comment as
    ‘All men are selfish, sex-crazed animals’.
    Both allegations are the false products of unbalanced minds and are simply silly.

    Equally regrettable are wild and partisan statements along the lines of:
    ‘All these hard-line clerics having affairs is disgusting; he’s an abusive monster and should have known better’ or
    ‘His wife hated him and made this all up just to discredit the husband she had rejected’

    So many comments simply reflect either a glaring sexism or a bigotry that discredits their writers. We have no right to take sides based on our own predilections, prejudices (for or against) and preconceptions.

    The so-called Seven Adulterers, if they exist at all, may be completely innocent and blameless.

    Mrs IDC may be completely innocent and blameless.

    IDC may be completely innocent and blameless.

    It’s strongly relevant to this case that within the Calvinist denominations the mental act of desiring a woman or man belonging to another marriage is held to comprise adultery. Adultery exists without any physical contact being made between the parties.

    Any accusations against either partner, or against ‘the seven women’ may be true or false. The accusations may be motivated by truth, by spite, by envy, by misunderstanding, or by guesswork.

    The viciousness with which the adage of ‘there’s no smoke without fire’ has been directed against the various parties really is ugly. Similarly, facile views that are so clearly driven by blind love of religion or blind hatred of it do their authors no credit at all. It is far too easy to put two and two together to make five.

    Every accusation made so far has been premature. The death of IDC certainly contained a strong message which the public is rightly eager to know and understand. Very many people have positive views of ALL members of the Campbell family. Many believe that the church is at fault for some so far ill-defined deed or omission, whereas many believe that it is not. We don’t have access to the ‘deleted emails’. We have no idea what was in them. They may have been explicit or they may have been vague. They may contain evidence of wrong-doing or they may contain absolutely none and be entirely innocent (let anyone who knows otherwise stand up and state it). They could range from ‘we are both married people, we can only be minister and congregation and we must honour our marriage vows’ to ‘we can’t go on seeing each other’ or ‘I love you, don’t you care?’ or ‘I’m having your baby, we need to talk’, or ‘you’re a member of my congregation and this isn’t right’, or ‘if you left your husband we could…’ or ‘why don’t we go for a walk along the bay and discuss it’ etc. WE SIMPLY DON’T YET KNOW. This thread has already become infested with premature inferences and reckless damage is being caused.

    This was a small community in which, notoriously, the slightest detail of everyday life is shared on a daily basis. Gossip is rife and everybody knows everybody else’s business. So far, over a span of 20 years, no shred of evidence has been produced for even one of these alleged ‘seven affairs’. Doesn’t that set any warning bells sounding amongst those who are so ready to condemn all parties out of hand?

    Has even one of the participants in this matter so far been proven guilty? Of what? Don’t we just love trial-by-lynchmob? Whom shall we pillory first? Who will cast the first stone?

    As of this moment, the only people who are demonstrably guilty are the premature accusers.

  341. I must thank all who reached out to me. My heart is full. I don’t often share my story and I did here with great trepidation – sharing something like this can evoke pity, which is not my goal. The fear is that people might be inclined to think,”Oh, so that explains Remnant!” Hehe

    Anyway, I thank those who chimed in with their own experiences. I have felt my heart burden lighten. I have not know many (any?) who have this shared experience.

    I awoke this morning deeply pondering the question: What makes men, who are adulterers, feel that suicide is the resolution to being caught?
    Imagining that adultery is thrilling – the tension of the secret – the thrill of the chase and capture (so to speak) – then the let down of the revelation. How does being caught equate to suicide?

    Can someone fill in the missing piece for me?

  342. Lowlandseer wrote:

    The church has declared what it will do and it will do it. A strange concept, I know. Who would believe that there are people of the Book, who are also people of their word?

    I have to admit, I did not know that heaven on earth has arrived. I would imagine you would have said the same thing about Campbell a year ago-a person of the book who is also a man of his word.

    You have a problem on your hands. It is highly unlikely that Campbell was pure as the driven snow or he would have stayed alive and had his wife seek psychiatric help and all of you would have helped him do so. A man does not usually commit suicide because his wife is having mental health problems and is living in an alternate universe.

    He is not alive because there is truth here and he did not believe the Gospel in such a way that he could confess his own sins and accepted discipline on the part of the *dudes of the book.* He was one* person of the book* who was not *true to his word* and he didn’t know how to deal with his alleged sin. It is so sad that his faith led him to believe that he was only useful while he was pretending to be good. That is not Christianity.

    I would feel so much better about your comment if you had discussed the fact that people of the book are sometimes not true to their word. You know it and I know it. I would have felt some much better if you had discussed Anne who is suffering at this moment.

    In fact, I am beginning to believe that the only person who was seeking truth in this was Anne Campbell. I stand with Anne and shall watch carefully on how you *dudes of the book* treat her. She better not be thrown to the dogs because an international stink will occur as the world world watches the machinations of the *people of the book* and ask which playbook they are really using.

  343. dee wrote:

    I have been thinking about this over the weekend. I believe that his wife, Anne, is telling the truth. That is why he chose to die as opposed to stay alive and fight. Also, if there is a child, the DNA will prove paternity.

    I was typing when you were posting.

    Please see my above question. Maybe you have insight. I don’t understand the thought process – how does caught equal end my life.

    These guys stepped outside the norm to have affairs, which takes time, effort, lied, scheming – why don’t they have the resources to own their acts?

  344. dee – at this point, if the “dudes” chose to support Anne, I fear their motives would be to avoid international scandal, rather than genuine concern and love for her.

  345. Remnant wrote:

    : What makes men, who are adulterers, feel that suicide is the resolution to being caught?
    Imagining that adultery is thrilling – the tension of the secret – the thrill of the chase and capture (so to speak) – then the let down of the revelation. How does being caught equate to suicide?

    Can someone fill in the missing piece for me?

    No answer, but I loved the question.

    Is ‘sex’ always what it presents itself to be?
    Or does it sometimes show up as a way someone tries in order to save their sanity, being that sex is one of the strongest drives humans have?

    Do people sometimes engage in affairs as an escape from something else, terrifying and overwhelming?

    Sex, as a human drive, is a very strong, strong force …. do people sometimes resort to it to get their minds off of a horror they cannot handle?

  346. @ Peter:
    And the Defenders of the Faith (or ManaGAWD, no difference) come out of the woodwork.
    Just like with WOFF.
    Just like with Driscoll.
    Just like with Doug ESQUIRE.
    Just like with Mahaney.
    Just like with Pearl & Ezzo.
    Just like…

  347. Remnant wrote:

    dee – at this point, if the “dudes” chose to support Anne, I fear their motives would be to avoid international scandal, rather than genuine concern and love for her.

    “Not from any Heavenly Virtue, but Hellish Respectability.”
    — G.K.Chesterton, one of the Father Brown Mysteries

  348. Remnant wrote:

    Please see my above question. Maybe you have insight. I don’t understand the thought process – how does caught equal end my life.

    One possible mechanism:
    Then “getting caught” means the entire image (both public and self-), cultivated and built up for years, comes crashing down. At that point, there’s nothing left.

  349. @ Christiane:

    Oops, I referenced the wrong comment. I was talking about Sunday worship which was an earlier comment of yours.

    I could care less about candles. Lights, lanterns and candles are tangential, but the Sunday issue vs sabbath issue has been brought up relative to the people in this post on that island in Scotland, and has been mentioned in a comment or three about the post.

  350. Remnant wrote:

    What makes men, who are adulterers, feel that suicide is the resolution to being caught?

    I cannot speak from experience, but many men choose suicide after a major loss. Being caught out on adultery is likely to lead to that loss? Maybe that is it. I don’t think we can know in all cases. People have different reasons for making the same decision.

    I appreciated you sharing your story. And okrapod. These stories cannot help but add to our knowledge and our compassion.

  351. Law Prof wrote:

    Lowlandseer wrote:
    @ Bridget:
    I can say it because it is true. The church has declared what it will do and it will do it. A strange concept, I know. Who would believe that there are people of the Book, who are also people of their word?

    Yes, the same ones who allowed a lying, hypocritical, serial adulterer to command their ship and preach in the name of God for decades?

    Whether because “$oul$ Were Being $aved” or “Correct Doctrine/Ideological Purity”.

    And the “lying, hypocritical, serial adulterer” may have been able to keep the Angel of Light façade up and running for a long time. To where there are those who still believe the façade — op cit Lowlandseer and Peter.

  352. @ Lea:

    I should specify I’m talking about a loss of relationship in this particular case, although I think Mr. Campbell may have anticipated a loss of status as well.

    I read Peters comments and I think they are off base, because our compassion is for those left behind. Mr. Campbell doesn’t need it now. He chose his path. It is, to me, unlikely that he would act in such a fashion without there being truth to these allegations. Possible, but unlikely.

  353. @ Christiane:

    Further questioning – Is pursing an affair – and succeeding – a way of feeling powerful (akin to how a rapist feels)?

    Is being caught stripping the adulterer of his power? Thus the end of his control? Thus the end of his life as he know it? This the end of his purpose for living? No power – no life?

  354. dee wrote:

    I would imagine you would have said the same thing about Campbell a year ago-a person of the book who is also a man of his word.

    Exactly!!! And would it seems have been wrong. So what does that tell us?

    People lie. We can’t always tell who is lying. We can’t always tell who is a good a decent person trying to do the right thing and who is ruthlessly protecting themselves, their organization, etc. That is a sad truth and I have learned it the hard way at times. But there it is.

  355. JYJames wrote:

    The men sat and chatted theology and their other men’s affairs, while the women were quietly up and down from the table to kitchen, meeting the men’s every need.

    Biblical Manhood. Did the men ring for each course from their third floor study?

    P.S. As described, that scene sounds straight out of that famous “Women: Know Your Limits” skit.

  356. Remnant wrote:

    These guys stepped outside the norm to have affairs, which takes time, effort, lied, scheming – why don’t they have the resources to own their acts?

    They do but they don’t want to have to admit to it. They seem to show a decided lack of applying the Gospel, that they discuss all the time, to their lives. Repent and own up is rare. They usually have to be caught first.

  357. Remnant wrote:

    Is pursing an affair – and succeeding – a way of feeling powerful (akin to how a rapist feels)?

    I certainly do not believe it is solely about sex. Or ‘darkness’ as Christiane mentioned.

    Have you read much on narcissistic personality disorder? I found some interesting possible answers there.

  358. Esther wrote:

    I would ask you to read if you have time the book “When justice failed in church and State”. There is pdf document of it on this site http://www.freechurchcontinuing.org/images/books/pdf/when-justice-failed.pdf.
    It outlines what took place in 2000 in the Free Church of Scotland: how women who came forward with serious allegations were treated and what happened to the men with integrity in the church, who defended them.

    Help DEEBS! Although this book is very wordy and about a prior scandal going back over 30 years, it has great application to current scandal. For some reason I cannot copy/paste excerpts as they get translated into computer code. the The concluding remarks on page 67 might just as well be an excellent response to Robertson’s “Pastoral Response”. I’ll try to summarize the involvement of Campbell and Robertson in 1999. (around page 50 in the book)
    In February, the minister of Stornoway’s large central church, Rev Stewart, invited the alleged perp-fessor Macleod in as a guest preacher. At that time Campbell was minister in Back, 8 miles up the coast. (18 years later, Macleod would write Campbell’s obituary, as linked in the OP. ) Some congregants petitioned the session to withdraw the invitation, due to allegations made against and by Macleod having never been resolved. When this was rejected, they began meeting separately and were soon threatened with church discipline. In May, the separatists were discussed in the General Assembly. Campbell, speaking on behalf of the Lewis Presbytery (who are now to be trusted to investigate his death) insisted the issue was not the alleged perp-fessor but separation from the means of grace, which was a “gross scandal” akin to “incest, adultery, trilapses into fornication, murder, atheism, idolatry, witchcraft.”
    Later that morning, Robertson alleged that Rev Roberts, a leader of the anti-perp-fessor association FCDA might be planning to sue. Roberts answered that they were not, but wouldn’t promise not to in the future depending upon the situation. The “divisive” Roberts eventually mentioned that the assembly had been faced with “gross and irremediable wickedness”. Knowing he was referring to the alleged perp-fessor, Robertson twisted Roberts’ words into meaning that the assembly was itself irremediably wicked, which (unlike sexual assault) could not be tolerated. Roberts refused to recant, was not allowed to call witnesses to defend the truthfulness of his accusation, and was eventually defrocked. A gag order was made to silence his friends, who disobeyed and were charged with “contumacy”. By year’s end about 3 dozen churches were on their way out the door, ready to become the Free Church of Scotland (Continuing).
    Know this was lengthy, but it sure beats 70 pages.

  359. okrapod wrote:

    My mother committed an act which resulted in her death. The act was one which she knew would more than likely precipitate a severe asthma attack and there was no discernible reason for her to do the act itself. She had been sick and depressed and angry for a long time. I was there when this occurred. I tried to save her but failed. We did have meds, I administered the meds, she died. Was it suicide? Who knows? Was it some reckless act for some unknown reason? Who knows?

    Though as described, “indirect suicide” is a distinct probability.

  360. dee wrote:

    They usually have to be caught first.

    “Don’t tell me you’re sorry cause you’re not. Baby when I know you’re only sorry you got caught. But you put on quite a show. Really had me going.”

    Rhianna gets it.

  361. Peter wrote:

    If we think that people have made mistakes, great or small, shouldn’t we start by caring for them rather than sticking pins in their effigies?

    I am not sticking pins into his effigy. This man was sinner just like you and me. I am trying to figure out how a man like him who claims to preach the Gospel seemed to be able to ignore it in his own life over 2+decades.

    Peter wrote:

    that very serious accusations have been made against him, evidence for which is so far not available. Shouldn’t we be ultra-careful not to jump to conclusions?

    You seem to gloss over the fact that it was his own wife who brought those accusations directly to him which led his suicide. If she was nuts (you have two choices-nuts or truth and I choose truth) he would be able to blow it off, get her help and I bet the whole lot of you would have joined in extolling his virtues in dealing with his wife. Why commit suicide when confronted. That was the act of a desperate man.

    Peter wrote:

    Shouldn’t ‘non-religious’ people show universal unbiased sympathy and understanding?

    Huh?

    Peter wrote:

    Shouldn’t Christians remember first the love of God and that ‘all have sinned’ including ourselves?

    Exactly. That is why we are questioning how a man who supposedly knew this could sin over 2_decades of his life. I would assume that this would be of interest to a loving Christian like yourself.

    Peter wrote:

    There’s something revoltingly ‘holier than thou’ about those who take the liberty of pre-judging. Isn’t the claiming of the high ground by harshly accusing others just another form of reckless extremism

    I find it revolting that no one has the wherewithal to understand that this is an important situation, one that calls into question what we do and do not believe about. the Gospel.

  362. Dale wrote:

    My father was required to convert to my mother’s legalistic religion in order to marry. When I was about 16, he stopped attending with us. My mother told me that he did not feel worthy enough to attend. My dad effectively drank himself to death and died when I was 21.

    That explains a lot abut Dale.

    Until the 1960s, a non-Catholic marrying a Catholic was required to convert to the RCC to avoid a “mixed marriage”; the reasoning behind this was probably from the “Unequally Yoked” verse. (I do not know when this practice became established — possibly during the Reformation Wars like so many others — but I’m pretty sure it was discontinued after the shakeup of Vatican II.)

    And in Dale’s parents’ case, this ended in disaster.

  363. Peter wrote:

    Equally regrettable are wild and partisan statements along the lines of:
    ‘All these hard-line clerics having affairs is disgusting;

    I never said anything like that.

    Peter wrote:

    The so-called Seven Adulterers, if they exist at all, may be completely innocent and blameless.

    I agree. They are. victims of clergy abuse.

  364. Some nations and states have laws which permit assisted suicide. There is a place where people just cannot take it any more, they crack. At that point death would help, as the old saying goes. I know that there are religious objections to suicide under any circumstance, but I also know that something like assisted suicide is practiced in this country under certain end-of-life situations.

    Perhaps people who terminate their own lives have had all the trouble in their lives that they could endure. Perhaps people live with emotional torture and crack under torture, even if it is they themselves who are the cause of their own torture. But since we do not know then we need to forgive.

  365. @ Headless Unicorn Guy:
    yes, it does help to explain what I was not able to understand ….. I deeply regret my inability to understand anyway, but this is a bit of light, however tragic, on what did happen. Very sad.

  366. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Until the 1960s, a non-Catholic marrying a Catholic was required to convert to the RCC to avoid a “mixed marriage

    Are you sure this was d/c’d? I have a friend who a few years ago converted to make their marriage ‘official’.

  367. Peter wrote:

    IDC may be completely innocent and blameless.

    I don’t believe that for a second. You are from the UK. Perhaps you do not understand the laws in the US. I have the legal right to express what I believe and do not believe about a situation. I do not have to offer *exact truth* which is often impossible to ascertain and gives men who like to conceal stuff an out in some cultures.

    Peter wrote:

    Adultery exists without any physical contact being made between the parties.

    And?

    Peter wrote:

    . So far, over a span of 20 years, no shred of evidence has been produced for even one of these alleged ‘seven affairs’. Doesn’t that set any warning bells sounding amongst those who are so ready to condemn all parties out of hand?

    Not at all! Pedophiles and other abusers are adept at hiding their predilections. In fact, your entire comment shows just how smart some of them are. I am following the pedophile scandal in Britain and am friendly with those who are exposing decades of coverup. Can you imagine keeping things hidden for decades with tabloids on your tail every day?

    Peter wrote:

    ? Don’t we just love trial-by-lynchmob? Whom shall we pillory first? Who will cast the first stone?
    As of this moment, the only people who are demonstrably guilty are the premature accusers.

    Yawn…you are following the playbook that this blog and others have written about for years. It is so tedious that it would sound silly if it wasn’t so dangerous.

    You have yet to mention compassion for a woman who was betrayed by her husband. She would know more than you, everyone on the island who *gossip and know each others’affairs* or anyone else will ever knew. I used to be a hime health nurse. What goes on behind closed doors is astonishing. I choose to believe Anne and stand with her.

    Bottom line:

    The moment I started reading some of the media on this issue, I knew that a cover up would most likely be in the works. Frankly, I see it in your comments and Lowland Seer.

    Thankfully, the US allows me to speak frankly on this matter. I intend to do so. Many of us will be watching for a probable coverup in this situation. If you do so, you will all demonstrate just how little you understand the Gospel.

    Take this home: I stand with Anne Campbell.

  368. Fellow Isle of Lewis minister Rev James Maciver, who conducted Mr Campbell’s funeral, told the Telegraph: “There are certain processes underway. At the moment we’re just investigating. We’re obliged as a church not to cover things up.”
    A spokesman for Anne Campbell said: “The family has lost a husband and father. This is a personal matter and the family has requested that they be allowed to grieve in private.”

  369. Deb wrote:

    Bravo for opening up your home and hearts to a shelter pup! Have you chosen a name?

    We’ve named him Jackson, and he’s nuthin’ but trubble! Not afraid of anything – a fraction of 70-pound Allie’s size, but he goes after her, growl, bark, snap, snap. He’s a bit of a hard-head – demands to be seated on the love seat. But, early this morning before I awoke, Jakson went in the den to hubby, whimpering to go out and potty!
    Allie thinks Jackson is her puppy. She claimed him the moment we got out of the truck with him. We ‘ve had to make her leave him alone several times. But, she is starting to settle down and let 35-pound Lizzie play with him.
    Jackson is absolutely nothing like Amos, which is a good thing.

    More good puppy news: our neighbor and his 13 yo son were fishing in our pond yesterday afternoon. Allie saw them and went berzerk, so I went out to visit them and calm Allie down. They met Jackson, and loved him. Jackson had 2 brothers at the shelter the day we adopted him. The neighbor’s are going to call and see if Jackson’s brothers have been adopted. If either or both of his brothers are still there, they are going to go adopt one of them.

    Can somebody please tell John Piper about all of this?

  370. Lowlandseer wrote:

    will only ask that you both/ all read in full what David Robertson wrote. It is a necessary corrective to the speculation that passes for insightful comment both here and in the press.

    And that is why I posted the link and quotes him. I totally. disagree with you about the *corrective.* It should be embarrassing to any thoughtful person. He said he doesn’t care to know what happened? What kind of wussy, stick your head in the sand is this?” Good night!

  371. @ Remnant:
    one wonders if the act of rape isn’t more about feeling powerful and having control over the victim

    more good questions

    I think some men who engage in affairs do so out of despair more than pleasure, especially if they are conflicted by their actions: the degree from which a man’s way of living departs from the way the same man sincerely sees as what is ‘right’ behavior …. that degree may indicate that something more is going on on than just the ‘recreational sex’ of a casual affair)

    in any case, an extra-marital affair is an act of great cruelty to all the women involved, just in different ways and therefore it is ‘sin’ in the sense of the harm it brings

    does a person’s mental state of despair impair their ‘will’ ? I think it must to some degree, as their experience of the darkness becomes overwhelming, yes.

  372. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Though as described, “indirect suicide” is a distinct probability.

    Yes, rather like suicide by cop. The idea is that a certain percentage of one car ‘accidents’ are actually suicide. There are reasons for trying to hide the fact that something was suicide, including trying to spare the family or maintain one’s reputation or such.

  373. Remnant wrote:

    I awoke this morning deeply pondering the question: What makes men, who are adulterers, feel that suicide is the resolution to being caught?
    Imagining that adultery is thrilling – the tension of the secret – the thrill of the chase and capture (so to speak) – then the let down of the revelation. How does being caught equate to suicide?

    Can someone fill in the missing piece for me?

    Dunno. I have no missing piece. Although there are always those who have the missing piece(s) in the form of pat platitudes and smug assurance.

    Best to have compassion I think, as has been pointed out up-thread.

  374. Nancy2 wrote:

    Jackson had 2 brothers at the shelter the day we adopted him. The neighbor’s are going to call and see if Jackson’s brothers have been adopted. If either or both of his brothers are still there, they are going to go adopt one of them.

    God is good! 🙂

  375. Readesr: Regarding LowlandSeer and Peter:

    LowLand is checking in from Scotland and Peter from the UK. They both are pushing the “we really may never knew the truth” agenda. I noticed that in the media reports by others (or maybe them-who knows who they are?)

    I mentioned in the post that I am concerned about a potential coverup. Their comments make my red flag monitor tip way into the positive sector.

    Here is what we have going against us in the UK. The laws there do not allow people to say that they think that Iain is guilty. Some of visit this blog from that part of the world do not understand that our laws give us more flexibility. We are allowed to say what we believe in the UD-thank God for this.

    Watch this situation carefully for all sorts of scheming to cover up what happened. I pity Anne Campbell being subject to these men. TWW is here for her should she wish to contact us.

    TWW stands with Anne Campbell unlike some snotty members of her church and island.

  376. Peter wrote:

    The death of IDC certainly contained a strong message

    It wasn’t just a “death”. He didn’t die of natural causes. He didn’t die an accidental death. He killed himself intentionally. He committed suicide. Should say, “The suicide of IDC certainly contained a strong message ….”
    And, yes, it did contain a strong message. Something was definitely wrong with him.

  377. Godith wrote:

    In 2008 MacLeod was given a honorable doctorate of divinity by Westminster Seminary, Philadelphia.

    The document Esther linked is a heavy read but very interesting, especially the lengths to which a church court will go to preserve its image. The reference to Iain Campbell may shed some light on the post here. That said, the whole split in 2000 is a mess.

  378. Lea wrote:

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:
    Until the 1960s, a non-Catholic marrying a Catholic was required to convert to the RCC to avoid a “mixed marriage
    Are you sure this was d/c’d? I have a friend who a few years ago converted to make their marriage ‘official’.

    Actually, I’m not sure, but there has been a lot of change in the RCC in the last 50 years or so. Over the weekend it hit me:

    500 years ago, the RCC locked into a certain way of doing things because of the Reformation Wars. So did the Protestants. But in the past 500 years (with a lot of it in the past 50) the two church movements seem to have swapped attitudes. Now it’s the Calvary Chapels and Truly Reformed who are into stifling legalism, SCRIPTURE as Koran, more Autocratic Heirarchy (Lead Pastors/Mini-Moses), totalist Thought Reform, and imposing a heavier and heavier yoke and burden after burden. And the RCC which has loosened into a refuge; concern for the poor and downtrodden (especially with the first Third World Pope), patronage of the arts & sciences, permission of fun and enjoyment, and a much lighter yoke and burden.

    The Nones & Dones are fleeing the former. Some find the latter, some stay away completely. And many on the Protestant/Evangelical side (and some on the RCC side) are still stuck in the former Reformation Wars paradigm.

    This also might touch on church history, with major shakeups every 500 years or so. It’s been 500 years since the last big shakeup (the Protestant Reformation) and we’re due for another. Maybe the Reformed need another Reformation?

  379. dee wrote:

    Here is what we have going against us in the UK. The laws there do not allow people to say that they think that Iain is guilty. Some of visit this blog from that part of the world do not understand that our laws give us more flexibility. We are allowed to say what we believe in the UD-thank God for this.

    Dee, UK defamation law only applies to living people. You cannot libel the dead.

  380. Nancy2 wrote:

    Peter wrote:
    The death of IDC certainly contained a strong message
    It wasn’t just a “death”. He didn’t die of natural causes. He didn’t die an accidental death. He killed himself intentionally. He committed suicide. Should say, “The suicide of IDC certainly contained a strong message ….”

    Especially since according to the reports, IDC made TWO suicide attempts in succession; the second (at the hospital he was at to treat the first) was successful. That says something.

  381. dee wrote:

    he would have been forgiven by many as the observed his repentant life

    I believe that is true, but it would not be a life that is anything like the “life” or “person” that he had constructed for the past 4 decades. That “life” could never be reconstructed, and maybe he could not imagine living any other life. Maybe he had spent so much time becoming Dr. Iain D. Campbell, Reformed Scholar and High Churchman that he had never become Iain Campbell, fine and kind and respectable and regular guy.

  382. Peter wrote:

    So far, over a span of 20 years, no shred of evidence has been produced for even one of these alleged ‘seven affairs’.

    I teach law at a university in a common law nattion, that alone doesn’t make me right, but I do know that what you say is demonstrably rubbish. It’s strong evidence that you are an outright ignoramus speaking rashly of that which you know not. The testimony of a wife as to what she saw in emails and experienced in her confrontation with the husband is undeniably evidence of seven affairs. It’s evidence that would be admissible in a court of law, she could testify to it, it could be sufficient to even support a criminal prosecution were Campbell to have stood trial for some crime. When it’s supplemented by the strong circumstantial evidence of Mr. Campbell’s immediate suicide attempt and suicide, the evidence seems overwhelming.

    The evidence is strong that you’re a blusterer trying to shout down the truth and that you neither know nor care what the Bible says about secrets being shouted from the rooftops. The evidence at this time points to you being a defender of your idols and institutions–but certainly not Jesus.

  383. Ian wrote:

    Dee, UK defamation law only applies to living people. You cannot libel the dead.

    He’s right, and it’s the same in the U.S, has been for over a century.

  384. Dave A A wrote:

    Campbell, speaking on behalf of the Lewis Presbytery (who are now to be trusted to investigate his death) insisted the issue was not the alleged perp-fessor but separation from the means of grace, which was a “gross scandal” akin to “incest, adultery, trilapses into fornication, murder, atheism, idolatry, witchcraft.”

    That was what jumped out when I read it. That Campbell focused on separation from “means of grace” due to their failure to deal with Macleod’s misdeeds rather than on Macleod’s misdeeds sheds light on Campbell’s recent actions, IMO.

  385. @ okrapod:
    There is great wisdom in your words here and your previous comment. The younger readers especially should read and re-read every word and let them sink in deeply because they will face situations where they will need to think through these things carefully and not in black and white but with wisdom.

  386. @ Ian:
    Ian wrote:

    Dee, UK defamation law only applies to living people. You cannot libel the dead.

    Thank you for this. I did not know that.

    I meant to add one more thing in that comment. I believe that it is highly probable that those on the investigation committee could also claim libel if I say that I do not believe them. I have been threatened with that in the US by a few well placed folks in regards to my comments on Sovereign Grace Ministries and other similar situations.

  387. dee wrote:

    I believe that it is highly probable that those on the investigation committee could also claim libel if I say that I do not believe them. I have been threatened with that in the US by a few well placed folks in regards to my comments on Sovereign Grace Ministries and other similar situations.

    Of course, the Sovereign Grace folks involved in the scandals would either be speaking out of absolute ignorance or intentionally lying to attempt to shout down anyone who would expose the truth (absolute ignorance, shouting down the truth and intentional lies seem to me to go hand-in-hand with Sovereign Grace, in my personal experience with those in that denomination). In virtually every circumstance in U.S. law, it cannot be an untrue statement to make public your opinion of something.

  388. Dale wrote:

    My father was required to convert to my mother’s legalistic religion in order to marry. When I was about 16, he stopped attending with us. My mother told me that he did not feel worthy enough to attend. My dad effectively drank himself to death and died when I was 21.
    Legalism destroys lives.

    Alcoholism destroys lives.

    There is very good help to be found in Al-Anon and Adult Child of Alcoholics.

  389. Gram3 wrote:

    @ okrapod:
    There is great wisdom in your words here and your previous comment. The younger readers especially should read and re-read every word and let them sink in deeply because they will face situations where they will need to think through these things carefully and not in black and white but with wisdom.

    But black-and-white “IT IS WRITTEN!” is sooooooo much easier.

  390. Law Prof wrote:

    The evidence is strong that you’re a blusterer trying to shout down the truth and that you neither know nor care what the Bible says about secrets being shouted from the rooftops.

    Or (as Sean Spicer was described in one of his first press conferences) “A Party apparatchik who’s been given a 2 + 2 = 5 Loyalty Test”.

  391. Gram3 wrote:

    That was what jumped out when I read it. That Campbell focused on separation from “means of grace” due to their failure to deal with Macleod’s misdeeds rather than on Macleod’s misdeeds sheds light on Campbell’s recent actions, IMO.

    Live by abstract Ideology, die by abstract Ideology?

  392. Lea wrote:

    Actually, many people, men especially, do this in responsible to an event, such as loss of a relationship. This is very common. I don’t know if he was responding to loss of relationship or loss which he assumed would be coming of status, reputation, etc. People also commit suicide in response to medical changes. It’s not always someone who has been consistently depressed.

    I agree, there are different reasons. Another is permanant loss of control to a person who must be in control at all times. There’s no way to know what was happening in the mind of someone we don’t know.

  393. Gram3 wrote:

    Maybe he had spent so much time becoming Dr. Iain D. Campbell, Reformed Scholar and High Churchman that he had never become Iain Campbell, fine and kind and respectable and regular guy.

    Myth vs Man, Persona vs Person.

    But what if the Persona is so important that (like “the Tragedian” in The Great Divorce) it devours the Person until there is no Person left?

  394. Nancy2 wrote:

    Can somebody please tell John Piper about all of this?

    And could you get TWW to upload a pic of your pup?

    I’m sure we’d like to see your Crazy Baby Dog.

  395. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    It’s been 500 years since the last big shakeup (the Protestant Reformation) and we’re due for another. Maybe the Reformed need another Reformation?

    They need a good, swift kick in the pants. At the very least.

  396. dee wrote:

    He said he doesn’t care to know what happened?

    Which is why I don’t care to hear what he has to say. That line in his “pastoral response” was not a proper pastoral response.

  397. siteseer wrote:

    There’s no way to know what was happening in the mind of someone we don’t know.

    Sometimes we don’t know what’s going on in the mind of someone we do know.
    Some 18 years ago, a lifelong friend of mine committed suicide. She was in an emotionally and physically abusive marriage, and none of us knew it. Each friend/family member knew about this one little incident, or that one little incident. She had told each of us not to say anything ….. It was embarrassing, and everything was okay, now. Each of us thought those incidents we one time things, and they had worked things through ……….. until we compared notes after her funeral, and realized the abuse was continuous over a period of 5 years. Her sister knew that she had miscarried because of the abuse.
    I learned the hard way, if you know something, say something.

  398. Law Prof wrote:

    We’re all priests now and there is but one high priest, Jesus. However, if you wish to hold him to the higher standard of one who thinks they have the standing to teach others about the truth of Christ and right Christian behavior, then I agree entirely.

    Yes, I see what you mean. Didn’t think about my own wording there — just about Robertson’s nerve in trying to dictate to the rest of us, and convince us that wilful ignorance is the “proper” Christian attitude to scandal.

  399. Max wrote:

    Which is why I don’t care to hear what he has to say. That line in his “pastoral response” was not a proper pastoral response.

    That was a mafia/street gang response.

  400. Serving Kids In Japan wrote:

    Law Prof wrote:
    We’re all priests now and there is but one high priest, Jesus. However, if you wish to hold him to the higher standard of one who thinks they have the standing to teach others about the truth of Christ and right Christian behavior, then I agree entirely.
    Yes, I see what you mean. Didn’t think about my own wording there — just about Robertson’s nerve in trying to dictate to the rest of us, and convince us that wilful ignorance is the “proper” Christian attitude to scandal.

    I was just being picky, figured we were coming from the same perspective. Just the axe I grind.

  401. dee wrote:

    Watch this situation carefully for all sorts of scheming to cover up what happened. I pity Anne Campbell being subject to these men. TWW is here for her should she wish to contact us.
    TWW stands with Anne Campbell…

    I agree, and hope she takes you up on the offer. She and the family are victims of this suicide. And based upon the 70 pages of history I read last night, scheming to cover up what happened seems very, very likely. Just what happened and why, I submit, are things we don’t yet know, and won’t know unless someone comes forward on the record to some believable blogger like yourselves or real news outlet. But, unlike his alleged friend Rev. Robertson, at least we want to know. In that community, the most likely ones to come forward would be other ministers to whom Campbell or others may have confessed. But they would do so at the risk of their careers. Maybe an angry husband or father will talk to someone other than church officers. It could be anonymous, but for us to really know about what happened and why, there needs to be SOMEONE who can be quoted. Until then, all we have is tabloids. And get a load of these guys!
    From the Herald:
    “It is understood Mr Campbell’s wife challenged him…”
    “It has been claimed”
    “it is also claimed”
    “it is also understood”
    RT refers to him as a “Vicar” and shows a clerical collar (neither one used by the Wee Frees) and then quotes a “close source” talking to the Daily Fail, which has:
    “it has emerged”
    “friends claimed”
    “It is also alleged”
    “A source said: ‘It is said’” (this has got to be the best one)
    “He’s accused”
    Who on planet earth is doing all this understanding, claiming, emerging ,alleging, and accusing?
    This stuff is the very definition of “gossip”, not the things the Calvinistas would have us believe.

  402. Gram3 wrote:

    That was what jumped out when I read it. That Campbell focused on separation from “means of grace” due to their failure to deal with Macleod’s misdeeds rather than on Macleod’s misdeeds sheds light on Campbell’s recent actions, IMO.

    Something like gnats and camels.

  403. Serving Kids In Japan wrote:

    @ Serving Kids In Japan:
    In a purely metaphorical sense, mind you. Not advocating violence, just a major dose of reality.

    Personally think a swift kick in the butt would be fine and appropriate. Yes, a literal one. Just funny that way I guess, but think a major portion of these so-called men who corporately abuse and gaslight women and hide behind the league of brothers and warped scriptures and leader idols would probably do a lot less damage if they had to genuinely fear something. They are virtually without exception cowards, otherwise they wouldn’t do what they do, and they’d wither away were anyone to ever in righteous anger pick up a whip and start overturning tables like Jesus did. I do NOT equate Christ with pacifism and do NOT believe “turn the other cheek” ought to apply to Pharisees and fools abusing women. No way.

  404. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Or (as Sean Spicer was described in one of his first press conferences) “A Party apparatchik who’s been given a 2 + 2 = 5 Loyalty Test”.

    poor Shawn, I suspect soon SNL will have in the role of ‘Humpty Dumpty’ talking to Alice, a reporter:

    ““When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.” “The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words mean so many different things.”

    “The question is,” said Humpty Dumpty, “which is to be master—that’s all.”

  405. Nancy2 wrote:

    I learned the hard way, if you know something, say something.

    How sad that your friend was unable to see her way out.

  406. Serving Kids In Japan wrote:

    Robertson’s nerve in trying to dictate to the rest of us, and convince us that wilful ignorance is the “proper” Christian attitude to scandal.

    Robertson’s nerves are nervous that history may be rhyming a little too well if things are not managed very, very carefully. Back in 2000, the internet was not as big a deal as it is now.

  407. Peter wrote:

    There’s something revoltingly ‘holier than thou’ about those who take the liberty of pre-judging.

    “For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge?” (1 Corinthians 5:12). Those who are holier than thou are more concerned about the impact on the pew than protecting the pulpit. The Body of Christ deserves better than this!

    Peter wrote:

    the only people who are demonstrably guilty are the premature accusers

    An innocent man committed suicide? His wife was a premature accuser? She acted on misinformation? Commenters on this blog are not accusers – they have expressed their opinions based on information provided by one who knew him best – his wife … she would not have risked so much on mere gossip.

    Peter, if you have never visited TWW before, you don’t know that this sad tragedy is only one in a long string of ministry failures that the Body of Christ is getting sick and tired of. Is it too much to ask the pulpit to be faithful?

  408. @ Gram3:
    However, it may also be true that the ones conducting this investigation may be interested in putting things in the past in proper order so that things can move forward in a positive direction. These men have their own choices to make just as the men twenty years ago had their choices and made them.

  409. Law Prof wrote:

    The testimony of a wife as to what she saw in emails and experienced in her confrontation with the husband is undeniably evidence of seven affairs. It’s evidence that would be admissible in a court of law, she could testify to it, it could be sufficient to even support a criminal prosecution were Campbell to have stood trial for some crime. When it’s supplemented by the strong circumstantial evidence of Mr. Campbell’s immediate suicide attempt and suicide, the evidence seems overwhelming.

    But there would never be a conviction. The seven or so women involved in the alleged affairs would testify that the wife misunderstood or misread the e-mails and nothing happened. Of course, it would be a game changer if photos should surface.

  410. Nancy2 wrote:

    I learned the hard way, if you know something, say something.

    Agreed.

    I knew a professional woman — whom the first time I met her I thought, “Addict.” She had addiction written all over her. She was also working too hard and going too fast. Working very long hours, volunteering for several organizations in different counties that required a great deal of work, teaching a night course on the side, fostering kids, etc. I gave her marriage 6 years from the time I met her to collapse, because no relationship could last with all of that.

    I thought surely her big employer would intercede, see her addiction, and use Employee Assistance to get her help. But that’s not what happened.

    She killed her husband and then committed suicide.

    And I learned my lesson: Don’t leave it up to the next person to say something. I’ll say something and work on getting someone help.

    She and her husband have several children, all of them young adults, who don’t have either parent now.

  411. Ken G wrote:

    @ Peter:
    Thank you, for a well reasoned response to this very difficult situation.

    Peter makes some very good points and asks what the missing piece is. I think the missing piece is a plausible explanation for a highly-regarded office-bearer suddenly and successfully taking his own life after failing to do so once. Pleas from church leaders to stop talking will not be well-received because church leaders have proved time and time again to be primarily interested in preserving their own reputations and the reputations of their institutions and their livelihoods. That may not be the case in this instance, but until trust is restored, church leaders have precious little standing to expect it and even less to demand it.

  412. dee wrote:

    The laws there do not allow people to say that they think that Iain is guilty.

    Even if he’s dead?

  413. Ken G wrote:

    The seven or so women involved in the alleged affairs would testify that the wife misunderstood or misread the e-mails and nothing happened.

    Some emails cannot be misunderstood, Ken.

  414. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    But what if the Persona is so important that (like “the Tragedian” in The Great Divorce) it devours the Person until there is no Person left?

    Perhaps a biographer will tell us someday what happened. There is a man behind this tragedy, and there are lessons to be learned if there are ears to hear and eyes to see.

  415. Godith wrote:

    Not only did the Church defend Donald Macleod, the State court exonerated him and claimed a conspiracy by the various women. In 2008 MacLeod was given a honorable doctorate of divinity by Westminster Seminary, Philadelphia. The Herald journalist quoted by David Robertson in his article “Tragedy in Lewis” is the son of Donald Macleod. Donald Macleod whose blog is http://www.donaldmacleod.org.uk/dm/ is in the Free Church of Scotland. His son, John, the journalist, is in the Free Presbyterian Church. If any of this is incorrect, please someone correct me.

    I believe that the above facts are correct. Donald Macleod also wrote the widely circulated obituary about Iain D.Campbell. I know that his son John is a journalist but do not know which newspaper he writes for or his church affiliation.

  416. @ Gram3:
    Yes, it’s okay if they remove that comment, HOWEVER the literary quote also applies in situations where religious authorities sometimes play games with the facts and with the meanings of words and phrases.

    If you track back to HEADLESS’s COMMENT to which I was responding, he also notes Law Professor’s comment of a religious nature apropo to the post.

    I accept your criticism and correction in good grace. I shall be more cautious in future so as not to offend or distress people here.

  417. Ken G wrote:

    Law Prof wrote:
    The testimony of a wife as to what she saw in emails and experienced in her confrontation with the husband is undeniably evidence of seven affairs. It’s evidence that would be admissible in a court of law, she could testify to it, it could be sufficient to even support a criminal prosecution were Campbell to have stood trial for some crime. When it’s supplemented by the strong circumstantial evidence of Mr. Campbell’s immediate suicide attempt and suicide, the evidence seems overwhelming.
    But there would never be a conviction. The seven or so women involved in the alleged affairs would testify that the wife misunderstood or misread the e-mails and nothing happened. Of course, it would be a game changer if photos should surface.

    Ken You are absolutely, unequivocally ignorant about the legal system and matters of proof and evidence. Completely, utterly wrong. There would be a conviction if a jury (or judge, if a bench trial) determined that the evidence was sufficient to establish matters in their mind based upon the standard of proof required (i.e., preponderance of the evidence in a civil case, beyond a reasonable doubt in a criminal case). The jury could choose to believe the wife or the alleged mistresses and they could absolutely, positively find that there was adultery on the basis on the wife’s testimony alone, without a photo, without DNA, without a shred of anything else other than bare testimony. Ken, you are ignorant of the law.

  418. Serving Kids In Japan wrote:

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:
    It’s been 500 years since the last big shakeup (the Protestant Reformation) and we’re due for another. Maybe the Reformed need another Reformation?
    They need a good, swift kick in the pants. At the very least.

    And most likely they’d react exactly the same as the Pope of Luther’s time.

  419. Lea wrote:

    Ken G wrote:
    The seven or so women involved in the alleged affairs would testify that the wife misunderstood or misread the e-mails and nothing happened.
    Some emails cannot be misunderstood, Ken.

    Unless it is The Party Line that they be misunderstood.

  420. Law Prof wrote:

    The jury could choose to believe the wife or the alleged mistresses and they could absolutely, positively find that there was adultery on the basis on the wife’s testimony alone, without a photo, without DNA, without a shred of anything else other than bare testimony. Ken, you are ignorant of the law.

    Emails alone would be enough to legally justify a divorce on the grounds of adultery. Divorce would mean he’d have to find a new career.

  421. @ Peter:
    As I’ve said to Ken G. I think you make some good points, and I also think you cast some stones that are unfair and paint with some broad brushes. TWW community is pretty diverse and we often disagree more or less agreeably with one another.

    One thing that is true, time and time again, is that church courts and authorities have not shown that they are uniformly trustworthy to look after the interests of what I term the pewpeons. Yet we are commanded to shut up and submit to their authority because “office-bearers” if they are Reformed/Presby or elders or Pastors if otherwise.

    The problem you have is that there is a huge effect–the sudden and deliberate and not impulsive suicide of a mature former moderator–without any apparent cause. This is going to cause humans to seek an adequate cause for such a huge effect. Pious sermonizing is not going to make that part of God’s good creation of human nature go away.

    I suggest that you spend your time pleading with your (presumed) fellow office-bearers to come clean with a thorough and fair examination of this chain of events and all related events such as the Macleod and other such debacles. Then you guys might do some failure analysis. I know that is not what Churchmen do, but people in the real world do that so that real people do not get hurt. ISTM that men who claim to speak for God might be interested in doing that.

    However, I am a woman, so I realize that the foregoing is irrelevant to Churchmen. Wise men might think about that, too.

  422. 3 comments not allowed from one individual who called people foul names. He’s one of those apologists for fallen celebrities.

  423. @ Dave A A:
    This is a good comment. Keep your eyes on the lingo that will come out in the coming months. I believe there will be an effort to marginalize Anne Campbell. After all she is just a woman.

  424. Velour wrote:

    Even if he’s dead?

    I wrote that without thinking. What I meant was that the way the law is written, I cannot say that I believe a cover up is underway by the investigative committee.I have to have proof. Thankfully, I write in the US!

    You are right, BTW.

  425. okrapod wrote:

    And to the extent that nobody ever understands this sort of thing until they go through it, I deliberately forgive them as those who can’t help it.
    But don’t anybody ever try to tell me how to feel or think or speak about this. Not then, not now, not ever.

    Your story has been much on my mind today. I am so sorry for your mother’s death. Thank you for trusting TWW with the wisdom you gained through such hardship.

    You are of course right: no one should tell you how to think or speak (or write) about this.

    News organizations and copy editors, though, should follow ethical guidelines on this subject. In our area, an unusually large number of high school students have recently taken their own lives. The papers and TV stations have hesitated to cover these stories at all, partly out of a deep fear of inspiring more suicides. The information vacuum makes it harder for people in the community to put together suicide prevention programs. Meanwhile the dead youngster’s friends end up trafficking in rumors about a taboo subject.

    When reporters do cover these stories, they usually take great care with the language. I had not known that “commit suicide” was a phrase left over from an era when the act was a crime. So perhaps it should be omitted from news stories, just as other phrases have been retired (“put up for adoption” comes to mind).

  426. dee wrote:

    Velour wrote:
    Even if he’s dead?
    I wrote that without thinking. What I meant was that the way the law is written, I cannot say that I believe a cover up is underway by the investigative committee.I have to have proof. Thankfully, I write in the US!
    You are right, BTW.

    Yes, thankfully you and most of us write in the U.S.

  427. dee wrote:

    After all she is just a woman.

    Speaking of which, I just checked the wee flea’s comment section, and so far that of Barbara Roberts has not seen the light of day. A negative comment did get posted yesterday, however. The flea lambasted the commenter, finishing up with the suggestion that they be more careful next time before they judge and post, and pray and repent instead. Oh wow couldn’t have seen that one coming. A fan joined in to correct spelling and grammar, and another to criticize its being anonymous. Yet Barb’s very careful and not-anonymous comment remains in time-out.

  428. Friend wrote:

    I had not known that “commit suicide” was a phrase left over from an era when the act was a crime.

    The dictionary does not seem to know that either and they define the word commit to include more than just crime.

    The reference that Velour posted Saturday at 2:07 AM takes an odd approach in that apparently they can say ‘killed himself’ but not say ‘committed suicide’ because it ‘can’ be related to crime, unless quoting the authorities and they have used the word committed. The whole section on that link about AP style changes is informative but it applies to the media. I am not the media. I do not think that the media can dictate to the general population, and even if I did I do not see how ‘killed himself’ is any step toward softening the reality of what the person did.

    I have heard about all I ever want to hear from the vocabulary police. I think in general that they have run out of useful and/or necessary corrections and are now just being silly about some things.

    BTW Velour, thanks for the link.

  429. Dave A A wrote:

    dee wrote:
    After all she is just a woman.
    Speaking of which, I just checked the wee flea’s comment section, and so far that of Barbara Roberts has not seen the light of day. A negative comment did get posted yesterday, however. The flea lambasted the commenter, finishing up with the suggestion that they be more careful next time before they judge and post, and pray and repent instead. Oh wow couldn’t have seen that one coming. A fan joined in to correct spelling and grammar, and another to criticize its being anonymous. Yet Barb’s very careful and not-anonymous comment remains in time-out.

    Thanks for the report, Dave A A.

    And people who respond as badly as the leaders at that church expect anyone to come forward with any serious matter and that it will be handled with care, concern, and in the utmost ethical manner? They’d be fools to come forward.

  430. Velour wrote:

    And people who respond as badly as the leaders at that church expect anyone to come forward with any serious matter and that it will be handled with care, concern, and in the utmost ethical manner? They’d be fools to come forward.

    Invitations to “Come Forward” to self-identify Traitors and Heretics for Denunciation and Purge.
    Just like all those high school essays after the Columbine Massacre.

    P.S. Remember “Gentleman Theologians”?

  431. okrapod wrote:

    I have heard about all I ever want to hear from the vocabulary police.

    Ha! I kind of go back and forth on this. Sometimes it is useful to change the way we talk about a thing but I do not believe any of the alternate options to ‘committed suicide’ are more clear and I do not see that as any more derogatory than the other options either. Sometimes it is the thing itself that is sad or irritating or maddening, and changing the language we use to talk about it changes nothing about the way we think.

  432. okrapod wrote:

    I have heard about all I ever want to hear from the vocabulary police. I think in general that they have run out of useful and/or necessary corrections and are now just being silly about some things.

    Remember “Microaggressions”?
    Once all Microaggressions are stamped out, they discover “Nanoaggressions”.

    Anyone remember George Carlin’s “Euphemisms and Political Correctness”?
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G9n8Xp8DWf8
    (NOTE – THIS IS HIGHLY NSFW; IT’S GEORGE CARLIN, AFTER ALL)

  433. David wrote:

    But I haven’t seen anything which says the dead can be libelled in Scotland. England and Scotland are both common law countries, so their legal systems have developed in parallel and have similar underlying principles. One of these is that a dead person has no character and so can’t be defamed.

    Spot on. Dead people can be defamed and have no standing to sue.

  434. okrapod wrote:

    The whole section on that link about AP style changes is informative but it applies to the media.

    Agreed. Nobody should be telling you how to tell your story.

  435. Friend wrote:

    In our area, an unusually large number of high school students have recently taken their own lives. The papers and TV stations have hesitated to cover these stories at all, partly out of a deep fear of inspiring more suicides. The information vacuum makes it harder for people in the community to put together suicide prevention programs. Meanwhile the dead youngster’s friends end up trafficking in rumors about a taboo subject.

    At which point, the media covering it is in a double-bind.
    Especially when the “trafficking in rumors” in the information vacuum is going to get wilder and wilder to the point where it will ALSO inspire more suicides. Maybe more than the media coverage would.

    At which point, it’s Liability Lawyer time, where the only concern is Avoid Any Liability. And the easiest way to do that is to avoid the issue entirely. “I KNOW NOTHING! NOTHING!”

  436. @ Gram3:

    I was thinking the same – I got lost amongst all the Wees and could not find where I was. Do these guys know where they are anymore? 😀

  437. This stuff is becoming all too common. Why can’t a minister do the ‘right’ thing once in a while … resign and divorce ‘before’ he gets entangled with mistresses and adultery? Of course, it’s never right to do wrong, but it would sure spare his church a lot of misery (not his family – they will hurt forever). If you have trouble keeping your pants on, you don’t need to be preaching at others to.

    For you preachers who are listening in who are considering infidelity … just by considering it, you have already forsaken your calling and committed spiritual adultery … what preaching you may still be doing is in the flesh, not by the Spirit.

    Sadly, in just a short span of time, I’m sure TWW will be reporting yet another sad account of a fallen pastor and a congregation confused and disillusioned.

  438. Max wrote:

    Sadly, in just a short span of time, I’m sure TWW will be reporting yet another sad account of a fallen pastor and a congregation confused and disillusioned.

    I just became Facebook friends with a man who found my spiritual abuse blog and Facebook.
    He and his wife have started a website after she was preyed sexually by their pastor.

    It is a betrayal many times over for them, where they should have been safe — the church.

  439. Velour wrote:

    And people who respond as badly as the leaders at that church expect anyone to come forward with any serious matter and that it will be handled with care, concern, and in the utmost ethical manner? They’d be fools to come forward.

    I agree. David Robertson personifies my reasons for being a “done” as far as the institutional church is concerned. If they expect me to sit under the ministry of a preacher, read his books and listen to his sermons then I have to be able to trust him. I don’t trust people who try to cover things up and I don’t trust men who lead double-lives. Especially after I was subjected to “accountability” at a previous church for being unmarried and therefore they were suspicious that I may fall into sexual sin. But apparently ministers are above accountability to us rock-throwing peasants (I have to give Todd Wilhelm credit for that phrase).

  440. ZechZav wrote:

    But apparently ministers are above accountability to us rock-throwing peasants (I have to give Todd Wilhelm credit for that phrase).

    LOL. Todd is very inventive.

    I can’t remember if it was Todd or another gentleman who came up with the term 9Marxists
    (in lieu of of the organization 9Marks).

  441. Just wanted to state I’m a Five Point Calvinist and Calvinist Theology rightly applied would not condone or defend clergy abuse of any kind or shun or belittle victims.

    If someone would use The Doctrines of Grace to such an end they are doing something that is completely opposed to the end of the Theological system they profess to follow.

    Honestly having read this it seems more about sometimes you do not really know a person my Church (more like a church plant it’s nine adults and three children) had a pastor who served for a little less than a year.

    After our previous Pastor retired. The pastor who served for that period of time decided to look for other ministerial occupation behind our backs.

    We only found out about this because he sent out a form letter telling us he was doing so. I had to call up my Deacon and tell him what had happened because I was the first one to receive the letter.

    Our congregation thought everything was fine until we received this letter. I share this aside as a personal example that sometimes you really do not know a person outside of their public persona or limited personal contact.

    Calvinism at it’s simplest is all about the unadulterated Sovereignty of God over all things from Creation to Salvation.

    In the end, you can make an abusive system out of any theological system. If there is a “circle the wagons” mentality that is protecting abusers in the greater Calvinistic Para-Church Movements than it should be excoriated, repented of and done away with.

    You do not get that from Calvinism itself but from a misplaced celebrity culture which is why I have never been a fan of Para-Church organizations. If anything Theology should be principles above personality first and foremost.

  442. when I heard this story, I thought that Lewis was the part of the island that had the most extreme form of Calvinism expressed by ‘sabbatarianism’; but I have learned that it was the other half of the island, called Harris. Nevertheless, Lewis does have the Back Free Kirk and I found this haunting psalm-singing video from that church:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k3MzZgPBL3Q

    the contrasts between the strict religious tones of the Calvinism in this place, and the nature of the Campbell tragedy are difficult to reconcile …. I cannot make sense of it, other than extreme breeds extreme when people are holding on too tight to what appears to be an unforgivingly rigid moral code where perhaps it is held that faith saves people FROM God

  443. Velour wrote:

    I can’t remember if it was Todd or another gentleman who came up with the term 9Marxists
    (in lieu of of the organization 9Marks).

    It was the other gentleman, but don’t quote me on that… Just in case 9 Marks decides to get a trademark (TM) on it, I wouldn’t want to get in trouble with their lawyers.
    Who’d a thunk THEY would pick up on it?

  444. Velour wrote:

    Max wrote:

    Sadly, in just a short span of time, I’m sure TWW will be reporting yet another sad account of a fallen pastor and a congregation confused and disillusioned.

    I just became Facebook friends with a man who found my spiritual abuse blog and Facebook.
    He and his wife have started a website after she was preyed sexually by their pastor.

    It is a betrayal many times over for them, where they should have been safe — the church.

    Sadly, it always seems “church” organizations protect the pastor and the heck with the victims. This must change, but when?

  445. Law Prof wrote:

    Ken You are absolutely, unequivocally ignorant about the legal system and matters of proof and evidence. Completely, utterly wrong. There would be a conviction if a jury (or judge, if a bench trial) determined that the evidence was sufficient to establish matters in their mind based upon the standard of proof required (i.e., preponderance of the evidence in a civil case, beyond a reasonable doubt in a criminal case). The jury could choose to believe the wife or the alleged mistresses and they could absolutely, positively find that there was adultery on the basis on the wife’s testimony alone, without a photo, without DNA, without a shred of anything else other than bare testimony. Ken, you are ignorant of the law.

    So far there is absolutely no evidence – no photo, no DNA, etc. Therefore, there could be no conviction based on evidence because there is none. Next, you wrote that the jury could choose to believe the wife or the alleged mistresses. However, you very conveniently left out the fact that the jury is not obligated or required (instructed by the judge) to choose between the wife or the alleged mistresses. Without evidence, the jury most likely (with about 99.9% probability) believe that the wife and the alleged mistresses all lack credibility or, more politely, all have equal credibility. The jury’s decision would then be that the prosecution didn’t make its case. The jury needed something more than, “He said – She said” or in this, “She said – She said” to convict.

  446. Aaron wrote:

    You do not get that from Calvinism itself but from a misplaced celebrity culture which is why I have never been a fan of Para-Church organizations.

    But does Calvinism tend to synergize the misplaced celebrity culture when you combine the two? Predestination/Determinism belief has its side effects.

    If anything Theology should be principles above personality first and foremost.

    At which point you are in danger of the Cold Equations of Ideology.

    “The Devil sends sins in matched opposing pairs, so that in fleeing one we embrace the other.”
    — attr to C.S.Lewis

  447. Velour wrote:

    I just became Facebook friends with a man who found my spiritual abuse blog and Facebook.
    He and his wife have started a website after she was preyed sexually by their pastor.
    It is a betrayal many times over for them, where they should have been safe — the church.

    “Nowhere do we corrupt so effectively as at the very foot of the altar!”
    — Screwtape

  448. Lea wrote:

    Sometimes it is useful to change the way we talk about a thing but I do not believe any of the alternate options to ‘committed suicide’ are more clear and I do not see that as any more derogatory than the other options either.

    Or you could convert noun to verb (an old tradition in English) and say “he suicided”.

  449. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Especially when the “trafficking in rumors” in the information vacuum is going to get wilder and wilder to the point where it will ALSO inspire more suicides. Maybe more than the media coverage would.

    Dealt with two of these in the same school, alas.

    One family wanted to keep everything completely private. They had the right–and perhaps a consuming need–but this left a building full of 2,000 kids to blame the dead child’s boyfriend. Funeral plan was changed at the last minute, and held far away during school hours. None of the youngster’s friends got to attend.

    The second family coordinated heroically with the teen’s workplace, school, and church. Everybody was invited to a vigil, viewing, and funeral, to mourn together, share memories, and try to make sense of it all. I don’t know how the family found the strength and grace. They also knew when to say no and retreat to their home. Sadly, I think they absorbed some disenfranchised grief from the earlier death.

    In both cases, the school did depression screening and suicide prevention training (in small assemblies), and offered further support to students.

  450. ZechZav wrote:

    Do these guys know where they are anymore?

    Actually, I am going to go out on a limb here, which is where I inexplicably find myself at times. I think these guys know exactly where they are. They are where they want to be and where they have devoted their lives to being. They are Respectable Churchmen first, last, and always. Respectable Churchmen come in all varieties, ancient and modern, liturgical and seeker. When it is first and foremost about the Organization and their place in the Organizations and not about the Risen Lord, then things go sideways and backward fast.

  451. I was a bit reluctant to post this but I want to get back to the suicide aspect of this tragedy. I was going through some letters records and remembering before I was 18 I witnessed two suicides in person one was successful the other was not, my mother saved his life. She was a nurse. When I say witnessed the one I was in the front room when he was in the garage but I saw his body when they were wheeling him out. The other one the man tried to cut off his arm with a broken bottle because he was seeing some type of insect/monster crawling on his arm. KJ will do that to you back in the 70’s. I saw a lot of that type of freaking out when I was a kid. Actually, it was pretty much a weekly event for say well 15-20 years. the kj was far worse than say the speedballing or freebasing though the freebasing would kill you dead right on the spot. Saw that happen one time too. All in all, I lost at least 12 friends due to suicide which does not count those that drove into walls, trains, ran down streets and were disintegrated by a large truck running away from the “demons” chasing them due to being wasted.

    This affected me, it should not have and that was made very very clear when I first became a Christian, let the dead bury their dead you follow me, move on, get over it, etc. I still think watching people die from alcohol was far worse as that just sucked the life out of you. That goes way up in the double digits to people I know who died from that or related health issues from drinking so much. It was so common we never really thought about it but it had a lasting effect on me, again it should not and it is a moral, human, spiritual failing on my part. At least that is what I was almost constantly told.

    The church does not deal well with messes, it wants overcomers, powerbrokers, strong, willful, and in many cases very angry people. What I have found strange is that if you actually need to be “saved” then you won’t ever be. God only wants those that don’t need God. I mean they preached grace, redemption, repentance etc. what they really wanted were truly good people who had it all together and above all were not a mess or those that could hide it really well. That’s what happened to this man in my opinion if the allegations are true. He seemed like he really wanted to die.

    Again I write the above because I think I can relate to some of what happens, though I have never wanted to do anything to myself. But I am deeply empathetic to people because of my past, another failing but that one I will keep.

  452. Christiane wrote:

    Nevertheless, Lewis does have the Back Free Kirk and I found this haunting psalm-singing video from that church:

    Thank you for that video (and your prior comment about the revival). The Minister of Back Free Church at the time of the video was in fact Dr Campbell. Getting a bit off topic and nostalgic, at the 3:05 mark they show an old cemetery. It’s across the island at a place called Uig in the back yard of the B&B at which we stayed. The place can “get” to you. We were there in mid-July, with horizontal rain straight out of Iceland and temperatures in the 40’s. As I walked/waded the beach in my wellies, it was hard not to think of the history. First, I kept looking for chessmen forgotten there by 12th century Vikings. Alas, most were carted off to London and a few to Edinburgh. Also I’d read of a revival there in the 19th century, and wondered if participants were in that graveyard. A couple miles away is the next best thing to Stonehenge. It was indeed in Harris where we found everything but churches and hotel (thankfully) resting on Sabbath. Further south and still strongly of the Gaelic Presbyterian culture is North Uist. We didn’t get there, but did get to hear our favorite Gaelic rock band whose founders were born there. Not a psalm, but here’s a rather haunting psalm-like song by them (with translation). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=idMC96RNbRA

  453. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    That explains a lot abut Dale.
    Until the 1960s, a non-Catholic marrying a Catholic was required to convert to the RCC to avoid a “mixed marriage”; the reasoning behind this was probably from the “Unequally Yoked” verse. (I do not know when this practice became established — possibly during the Reformation Wars like so many others — but I’m pretty sure it was discontinued after the shakeup of Vatican II.)
    And in Dale’s parents’ case, this ended in disaster.

    Actually, HUG, Dale left quite a bit unsaid in his comment.

    My mother converted to marry my father. She was happy to do this at the time. Eighteen years later she did leave the Catholic Church (or it left her) when my parents divorced.

  454. Ken G wrote:

    Therefore, there could be no conviction based on evidence because there is none.

    Convictions are for criminal acts.

    By the way, I am in favor of laws criminalizing clergy having sexual relationships with congregants. After all there are laws against doctors, lawyers, and psychologists having sex with patients/clients and for very good reason.

  455. Dave A A wrote:

    Velour wrote:
    I can’t remember if it was Todd or another gentleman who came up with the term 9Marxists
    (in lieu of of the organization 9Marks).
    It was the other gentleman, but don’t quote me on that… Just in case 9 Marks decides to get a trademark (TM) on it, I wouldn’t want to get in trouble with their lawyers.
    Who’d a thunk THEY would pick up on it?

    Was it you Dave A.A. who came up with 9Marxist?!?! Brilliant!!

  456. Dave A A wrote:

    peaking of which, I just checked the wee flea’s comment section, and so far that of Barbara Roberts has not seen the light of day. A negative comment did get posted yesterday, however. The flea lambasted the commenter, finishing up with the suggestion that they be more careful next time before they judge and post, and pray and repent instead. Oh wow couldn’t have seen that one coming. A fan joined in to correct spelling and grammar, and another to criticize its being anonymous. Yet Barb’s very careful and not-anonymous comment remains in time-out.

    No surprise there.

  457. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Friend wrote:
    In our area, an unusually large number of high school students have recently taken their own lives. The papers and TV stations have hesitated to cover these stories at all, partly out of a deep fear of inspiring more suicides. The information vacuum makes it harder for people in the community to put together suicide prevention programs. Meanwhile the dead youngster’s friends end up trafficking in rumors about a taboo subject.
    At which point, the media covering it is in a double-bind.

    Especially when the “trafficking in rumors” in the information vacuum is going to get wilder and wilder to the point where it will ALSO inspire more suicides. Maybe more than the media coverage would.

    That’s difficult to know, though. The media doesn’t generally cover suicides because it not infrequently leads to copy cats (especially stuff like jumping off of bridges).

    It seems to me the best option would be for the school to hold an assembly or some community events and talk to the kids,preferably with counselors available if they haven’t already. I don’t think a media report is really going to fix anything with them.

  458. Aaron wrote:

    You do not get that from Calvinism itself but from a misplaced celebrity culture which is why I have never been a fan of Para-Church organizations.

    This is what I began to think. Celebrity and para church organizations that promote it are causing a host of problems. Partly because when someone sins there is SO much at stake for everyone involved, and they’re all linked and they start circling the wagons…

    Many of them are deeply in ‘you scratch my back, i’ll scratch yours’ territory, which means they are unwilling to call anyone out or stop publishing their articles no matter how many abusive and assaultive people they marry off and promote, or women they abuse themselves, etc.

  459. Christiane wrote:

    other than extreme breeds extreme when people are holding on too tight to what appears to be an unforgivingly rigid moral code where perhaps it is held that faith saves people FROM God

    The same thing happens in permissive cultures as well. I think these are simple, human failings. People lie. They cheat. They hurt others. And they can show up anywhere. We need to be on guard.

  460. Velour wrote:

    Was it you Dave A.A. who came up with 9Marxist?!?! Brilliant!!

    Well, mine is the earliest reference I’ve been able to find online. I’m not certain I didn’t borrow it from someone, however.

  461. Bridget wrote:

    No surprise there.

    It’s like Robertson or a helper approved a comment which seemed to be lower hanging fruit. I suppose they’d approve mine if I tried, and could then pick it apart and tell me to repent.

  462. dee wrote:

    @ JYJames:
    You know, it might be interesting to collect some of his quotes and do another post. This guy is worth looking at very seriously. I have set up a post and if any of you wish to submit Iain Campbell quotes, put them in this comment thread. I will give you credit for finding them.
    This story is worth a closer look, especially as I have read all of your comments.

    Excellent idea. Just looking at a video on youtube of IC teaching while wringing his own hands is strange. Indicators. It was all in plain view?

  463. Lea wrote:

    It seems to me the best option would be for the school to hold an assembly or some community events and talk to the kids,preferably with counselors available if they haven’t already. I don’t think a media report is really going to fix anything with them.

    Families have a lot of control over what information the school releases to students. The school cannot even announce a student’s death without the family’s permission. Families can deny permission for a school vigil or memorial service. Or they can grant permission, with or without showing up themselves. At least around here.

    Media reports can sometimes supply facts, although I agree that is not a reliable way to help large groups of kids.

    Depression screening, assemblies, and available counselors do help a lot.

  464. brian wrote:

    I was a bit reluctant to post this but I want to get back to the suicide aspect of this tragedy.

    I hear you. Have also greatly appreciated all the comments from others who’ve gone through this. I know I’ve made some light-hearted comments poking fun at things like websites resting on Sunday amongst my too-many on this post. It is hard to know what to think– even about God, in such tragedies. My loved one who overdosed would have “completed” it if I’d showed up a half hour later. It’s difficult to even credit God, though of course I’m very thankful. But as a couple have mentioned, we might not be able to save someone. And I almost didn’t.
    Dee mentioned in the OP the hospital involved. I took my loved one to the local small town (same size as Stornoway) hospital because it was her only chance. Once there, however, the care was pretty bad as she continued to get worse and I had to scream at them to call the helicopter.
    One more thought which might help someone — in this case there were several factors. 1st The underlying mental illness which wasn’t effectively medicated for several more years. 2nd (I believe — I’m not an expert) The medication she’d been on for several years which has a reputation for inspiring suicidal feelings. 3d The immediate cause of a failed relationship.

  465. Dave A A wrote:

    It’s like Robertson or a helper approved a comment which seemed to be lower hanging fruit. I suppose they’d approve mine if I tried, and could then pick it apart and tell me to repent.

    That’s exactly what it seems like, especially when you know for a fact that other well thought out comments were not approved.

  466. Christiane wrote:

    Do people sometimes engage in affairs as an escape from something else, terrifying and overwhelming?
    Sex, as a human drive, is a very strong, strong force …. do people sometimes resort to it to get their minds off of a horror they cannot handle?

    I see no reason why not. In “I Don’t Want To Talk About It”, Dr. Real often refers to “self-medicating” or “addictive” behaviours, in which traumatized people turn to various stimulant or relaxing activities in order to ward off their own inner pain, instead of facing that trauma and getting real help. And sex is one of those activities that can become addictive.

    So, was Dr. Campbell suffering from some untreated trauma in his life? It’s certainly possible, although we might never know the whole story. Even if it’s true, it still doesn’t excuse his unfaithfulness to his wife (assuming he did cheat on her), or his abandonment of Anne and their children. If Campbell was hurting that badly, I wish he’d gotten the help he needed, instead of making the choices he did.

  467. To be honest it was the whole “It was God’s will for His eternal Glory” / Its all your fault they are in hell because you did not witness to them good enough, their blood is on your soul narrative that really freaked me out. I get why some faith groups use it as it is good to maintain control and rip the soul out of a person who is a bit uppity but, well it hurts, to be honest. It still, does.

  468. @ dee:
    Thanks Dee. For some time I’ve been a volunteer media relations director for a charity which works in suicide intervention, post-vention, prevention and education. Seeing what survivors of suicide loss go through rips my heart.
    I appreciate your compassion and understanding.

  469. Deb wrote:

    Bravo for opening up your home and hearts to a shelter pup! Have you chosen a name?

    And a great big BRAVA! from Potter too. This is true holiness and sanctification (Nancy2’s deeds to the least of them), the real McCoy, not just ethereal claptrap in the upper cloud layers.

  470. @ Bridget:

    There is no point engaging people like David Robertson directly as it is a waste or your time and energy. He will either not approve your comment or approve it and then hurl abuse at you. I tried and he just started getting like that with me and I took a step back as my blood started boiling when he called Smyth’s victims “nasty”. I saw his Twitter exchange with Julie Anne and he abused her also – thankfully Julie terminated the conversation because it was going nowhere but my policy now is to simply ignore him. Getting into a conversation with him may only boost his ego and his thirst for a debate so I would not give him the satisfaction. In a group conversation I may answer his points but address it to other readers but I will not dignify him with an acknowledgement. I leave it in the hands of God and pray that he deals with people like Robertson in his way and in his time. TWW has reached out to the victim and as a community we are here for all victims. We can write a critical response to him here and on other blogs so that others know to avoid him and Campbell’s loyal fan club.

  471. Ian wrote:

    Can anyone think of anything else they had in common?

    Others who cooperated in keeping it covered up.

  472. https://youtu.be/cO3yqjSrwT0
    This was an amazing and very heartfelt video of a woman whose Husband may have had PTSD and she is showing written notes concerning her story. Why this is rather powerful is in my old faith tradition she would have gotten to maybe page five before she would have been told to repent. Mental health issues are issues of the soul and need to be repented of. That was such a loud banging drum as I remember it. She is a very brave woman for sharing this and trying to help others through the tragedy.