Andy Davis and First Baptist Durham: I Wonder If Wormwood Grinned?

Of all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. C. S. Lewis link

This is a long post, but I think it is worth the read to really understand what is going on in the so called *revitalization* movement in the SBC. 

One of my favorite pastors said something a couple of decades ago which has stuck with me during my journey through the post evangelical world. This pastor had a son who was seriously intellectually impaired from the time he was born. As he reached his teen years, with the body of a man, the family became unable to care for him without 24 hour help.

He gave a sermon on what we are willing to give up to do the right and hard thing. He said that if a great scientist were to come up with a cure for his son but, in order to do it, he would have to ignore his wife and children in order to spend his life in the lab then the end cure would not be worth the sacrifice. Wade Burleson said it this way. We should not let our theology trump our love. 

In other words, the end did not justify the means. I have thought about this for years and have begun to see it more clearly as TWW considers all of the pain and sorrow in the body of Christ that is sometimes perpetrated by church leaders.

9Marks does a puff piece on Andy Davis based on The Screwtape Letters

If you have not read The Screwtape Letters by CS Lewis, I strongly urge you to do so. It is a masterpiece by Lewis, and it makes me sad that a 9Marks author would use this classic to push a new book written by Andy Davis and Mark Dever. In April, 9Marks posted Dear Wormwood…

Nevertheless, my dear soldier, I’m writing to you today because we’re concerned to see a steadily growing trend in America. It’s called “revitalization.” This dreadful new movement seeks to send men and their wretched families and friends into dying churches with the purpose of bringing them back to life. Much to our frustration, it seems to be working well! There are several strong church and para-church organizations backing this movement with their resources, encouraging it with their platforms, training for it in their seminaries and internships, and writing books about it to spread awareness and enhance education.

One book in particular has been particularly troublesome for us at the central office, as it seems to be the most in-tune with the spiritual reality of the war we wage. A particularly devious and rotten man named Andy Davis is the author (perhaps you’ll recall this nefarious dog from our overseas training in Japan), and the propaganda is called Revitalize. Does our enemy lack so much creativity as to title a book with such simplicity?

Read this next part carefully. Note the typical gossip and slander baloney. And focus on the idea that they are only fighting over tertiary matters of doctrine.

I pray, Wormwood, that you would double down on your labors of deception. Do whatever you must to increase gossip and slander. Do whatever you can to get these idiots fighting over committees and tertiary matters of doctrine. 

Revitalize is focusing on how to move into churches which have many assets — trusts, buildings, land, etc. — but are *dying.* This is a great way for the young Calvinistas to take over a church, instead of trying to build one from scratch which involves raising lots and lots of money.

Did you notice the reference to tertiary doctrine? This made me smile. This movement is Calvinista in origin and the churches, by hook or by crook, will become Calvinist churches. For them, it is a primary doctrine, and some will hurt people to make it so.

Andy Davis puff pieces continue at SBTS and The Gospel Coalition.

Southern Seminary Magazine first published The Reformation of FBC Durham: North Carolina pastor Andy Davis revitalized his church through verse-by-verse expository preaching in their Spring 2017 issueThen, on June 1, 2017, The Gospel Coalition reprinted this under the title U-Turn in North Carolina: A Story of Church Reform The Revitalization of First Baptist Church Durham.

Here is how they represented what happened to Davis.

When Davis finished his PhD in church history in 1998, he accepted the call as pastor of the historic First Baptist Church Durham, North Carolina. Scripture memory and meditation sustained him as he withstood a powerful faction of deacons and committee chairs. In 2001, his opponents tried to drive him away after he led the church to change the bylaws to reflect biblical roles of gender and authority.

Now nearly 20 years later, the pastor and TGC Council member leads his thriving congregation the same way he did back when the cabal tried to oust him: verse-by-verse, expository preaching.

…While he designs his messages to feed his flock, he’s also equipped them to ward off threats to biblical authority.

…When Davis lost an early battle in 2001 to change the church bylaws to clarify male-exclusive leadership, he showed up the next Sunday and continued preaching through Romans. This approach hasn’t changed, even when a growth in new membership allowed for the bylaw change to pass decisively a year later.

Watch how he manipulates the message here.

He claims that Christianity is going to be more controversial, and Satan is fighting to marginalize it. In other words, if one does not support his gospel™ mandates of male exclusive leadership, one is going the way of the evil one.

If you faithfully preach the Word and don’t shrink back from controversial, pointed topics, you’re going to have a hard time,” Davis said. “I think it’s going to get worse in our culture. I think Christianity is going to become more and more controversial, and Satan is going to try to marginalize

Andy Davis' version of events as written in 2011.

In 2011, David wrote a piece published at 9Marks called The Reform of First Baptist Durham. The Deebs live about 30 minutes from this church. I know a few people who currently attend the church, and all of them are Calvinists. However, I have an insider's track to the *rest of the story.* For a number of years I have been quite friendly with an older couple who were members and leaders of this church when Andy Davis arrived.

I take personal umbrage of them being portrayed as wicked, unregenerate, a part of a cabal, etc. This couple has devoted their lives to Christian causes such as pregnancy support, faith based medicine, as well as serving their churches as leaders. This couple, along with many others, were on the receiving end of Davis' authority™ based, unloving leadership. 

I wrote the following 2 posts back in 2011. It is a lot to take in. However, it gives you another point of view. After we posted these, we received a couple of emails from seminary students who let us know that Davis' version of events is being taught in Calvinist seminaries. One of the students thanked us and said "I had a feeling there was more to this story." 

The bottom line for me is quite simple. While everyone is jumping up and down, praising Davis, there are some people who were given the left boot of fellowship. It appears the ends justify the means within this group. 

As the SBC 2017 convention gets underway next week, we hope they know exactly what is going on in the area of "revitalization". Love appears to have nothing to do with it. Maybe this group of folks is trying out how the ends justify the means. Machiavelli. What a guy!

(P.S. – Do not mess with CS Lewis)


FBC Durham’s Andy Davis: Electing a Woman Deacon Is “Wicked”

Sovereign timing and total depravity

I am sometimes amazed when I realize that God has placed me in circumstances that eventually result in a blog post. Today is no exception. I want to make one thing perfectly clear to the Calvinistas who will read this post with gritted teeth. If you claim to believe in a sovereign God, then you will need to ask why I, who writes a blog, was given this unique perspective by those who were one the "receiving end" of Davis' judgments. Also, since some of you subscribe to the total depravity of man, you will need to deal with the fact that even a much-admired pastor can be capable of misrepresenting a situation.

Several years ago, my husband and I made the acquaintance of a delightful couple. They are deeply committed Christians, involved in multiple ministries, both within the church and through para-church organizations. I have been privileged to hear one of them teach from the Bible on numerous occasions and contend that both are conservative Biblical expositors. Little did I know, until recently, their involvement in a major brouhaha at a local church.

Andy Davis' inexplicable and ill-advised decision to resurrect old wounds

Approximately a decade ago, a huge conflict occurred at First Baptist Church, Durham. The pastor, Andy Davis, a graduate of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, had been the head pastor for three years. Although there was unresolved pain, the passage of time had allowed most parties to move on.

Unfortunately, Andy Davis decided to resurrect old wounds by writing a self-congratulatory article titled “The Reform of First Baptist Church of Durham” for the 9 Marks (Mark Dever) blog here. A shortened version was subsequently published on J.D. Greear’s blog. We have reason to believe that this article will continue to be reprinted far and wide within certain Calvinista circles. Davis, of course, was “the Reformer”.

Why TWW decided to respond:

We believe Davis’ treatise appears to be shameless self-promotion, while, at the same time, demonstrating a profound insensitivity to the lingering pain of the parties involved. Frankly, we believe this missive was unnecessary and borders on being, in our perception, downright mean. Because we know some of the parties involved in this incident, we have decided to add some information to the discussion.

We believe that Davis’ recounting of the actions and responses of some of the people may have been inadequate and even misrepresentative of their true feelings and motivations. Although we have some insider information, we developed most of our thoughts based on Davis’ article alone.

Davis’ call for the church to repent:

About three years after his arrival, during a church service, Davis took the unusual step of telling the people in the church that they must repent. He claims that he included himself in the process but, as you will see, later on, he really doesn’t count himself amongst the guilty because he was following the Bible and the rest of these poor schlocks were not.

Here is what he says:
“So I began worship by calling on all the people of FBC to repent—including myself. In the spirit of Daniel 9, I felt that all of us must take responsibility for violating God’s clear guidance.”

Now, what pray tell, is found in Daniel 9? Here are some selected verses from the NIV:

  • “We have been wicked and have rebelled; we have turned away from your commands and laws.”(5)
  • “We have not listened to your servants the prophets.”(6)
  • “We and our kings, our princes and our ancestors are covered with shame, LORD, because we have sinned against you.”(8)
  • “Therefore the curses and sworn judgments written in the Law of Moses, the servant of God, have been poured out on us, because we have sinned against you.”(11)
  • “Just as it is written in the Law of Moses, all this disaster has come on us, yet we have not sought the favor of the LORD our God by turning from our sins and giving attention to your truth.” (13)

There are many more verses but they carry on in the same vein.

So, it sounds like the church is guilty of a most horrendous sin. So, what is that sin?

The church membership disobeyed Davis and elected a woman deacon!

They not only elected a woman but they did so over Davis’ vehement objections. Here is what Davis says.

“I began corporate worship at First Baptist Church (FBC) Durham by calling on the members of the church to repent. The church had just elected a woman deacon for the first time in its history, and deacons in our church’s polity were treated as spiritual leaders with shepherding responsibility for the flock. I had been teaching the congregation that Scripture reserves spiritual leadership to men, and I had made private efforts to forestall this result. Still, the church voted in a woman as an authoritative spiritual leader.

Make sure you get Davis’ point. The people disobeyed him even though he believed that had been teaching them from the Bible.

Davis says the people were angry at him because they did not believe in repentance after conversion!

“My call was an object of horror to many of the members of the church. They were outraged. In their minds, repentance was something you do at the beginning of the Christian life and then never need to do again. For them, it was as if I were saying, “Because you voted for a woman as a deacon, you are not Christians.”

I believe that Davis demonstrates that he does not have the gift of a prophetic mind reader. I can attest to the fact that the two people I know, who were deeply involved in this incident, understand that regular repentance is a part of the Christian life. This is insulting to them, and most likely many others in this church who both understand and follow that concept.

As for the horror during the service part, I can safely say that, had I been a part of that church service in which I was being told, via Daniel 9, that I was wicked, rebellious, and guilty of turning from God’s commandments because I voted for a woman deacon, I would have caused quite a scene. Davis would have seen outrage that wasn’t only in my mind!

How Davis could take a secondary issue, a woman deacon, and turn it into a sinful, wicked rebellion against God, is beyond me. It is pronouncements, such as this, that cause people to run from God. Remember the person I quoted at the beginning of this post? She said, “It is so hard for me to get the strict, punishing God out of my head & heart. I pray to God and struggle with this and assurance of salvation. Was I repentive enough, did I really mean it, if not did I really want to repent, etc. I am tired, worn-out.” Could Davis have produced our next email by his actions?

There is something even more concerning about such an action. This is a secondary issue and yet the people were called to repent for voting on their belief that a woman can be a deacon. Just imagine all the other secondary issues out there like Young Earth creationism. Davis' good friend, Al Mohler, says this is the issue he is going to push this year. Could that mean more calls to repentance?  Will your glam blog queen now be listed as one of the "wicked" in need of "repentance?" Will you?

There is far more to this story. Davis has some pretty negative things to say about some of the people who called him to FBC Durham and that does not speak well for him. He discusses his attempts to change bylaws, etc, all the while proclaiming himself as a truly Biblical leader. We will take this up tomorrow.


Andy Davis is Biblical; I'm Not

TWW continues in the analysis of Davis’ “reformation.” I will state the bottom line up front. Unless you agree with his view of gender and authority and totally support his self- proclaimed “Biblical” view, you are most likely wicked and unregenerate. And I think this sort of thinking sounds like overreaching arrogance. Perhaps he did not mean for his article to be interpreted thusly. Unfortunately, he gave little reason for me to see it any other way.

However, the real agenda is stated by him at the end of this post. And frankly, it is deeply disturbing. Do not miss it because it spells out how much trouble the post-evangelical church is about to experience.

Please refer to yesterday's post for some background. Here is the link to Davis' article which was posted on the  9 Marks blog.

Did Davis announce his Calvinista leanings and view on gender prior to his call to FBC?

Here is what he says.

“As I prepared to assume the role of senior pastor at FBC, I knew there was a significant flaw in the polity of the church that I would have to address: the issue of gender and authority.

We have reason to believe that Davis may not have revealed his intentions prior to his arrival at FBC, Durham. In fact, his narrative clearly indicates a church that was blind-sided by his absolute, singular emphasis on gender and authority. There has been some discussion on our blog, and others, that some pastors, who receive a call to a church, do not fully explain their view on Scripture. Then they pull a bait and switch and whine when the people do not march lockstep. We believe that deliberate concealment of intentions to change church polity is dishonest and we certainly hope that this is not true of this situation.

Davis believes that women in leadership is unbiblical and outright states that Gordon- Conwell seminary is guilty of unbiblical teaching.

“Now I personally believe that 1 Timothy 3:11 allows for women to be deacons, but I also believe that deacons are in no way to “teach or have authority over a man,” as 1 Timothy 2:12 puts it.”

“My master of divinity degree from the egalitarian Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary had taught me the best arguments for “evangelical feminism,” and I had come to reject them as unbiblical.”

Here is little known fact about your glam blog queen. A wonderful couple, who were attending Gordon Conwell, reached out in friendship to this then shy, brand new Christian and helped me to find some fellowship in the Boston area. I was allowed to sit in on some classes at this seminary and even sat in on the great Elizabeth Elliot’s class. Now, as many of our readers will know, she is hardly a liberal. In fact, Harold Ockenga, and Haddon Robinson, have all been involved at the seminary.

Davis shows his disdain for such spiritual giants by his arrogant pronouncement of the teaching at Gordon-Conwell.. “Andy Davis, you are no Harold Ockenga or Elizabeth Elliot and you should be ashamed."

Frankly, he could have simply stated that disagreed with their interpretation. But such kindness is not in keeping with "my way or the highway" beliefs.

Davis demonstrates his naivety by assuming that the majority would agree with his plan to change those demon bylaws since they were “clearly" unbiblical.

The bylaws allowed for female deacons and it is apparent that he knew it when he accepted the offer.

“As I went to Durham to assume the role of senior pastor, I naïvely assumed that the church simply needed to change its by-laws back to the way they were in 1988, and all would be well. In fact, I was entering a spiritual war zone.”

He tells a woman not to run for deacon and is startled by her response.

"In the conversation, I asked her to refrain from pursuing the office until I had a chance to teach first the deacons and then the church about my convictions on gender and authority. She bristled. And later she would say that I threatened to preach a sermon about her if she didn’t withdraw.

Interestingly, he did end up preaching one heckuva “repent you wicked people" sermon. So he did preach against her indirectly.  She got it; I get it and I bet others did as well.

He claimed that he wanted people to delight in the clear teaching of Scripture.

“My next step was to write a paper entitled “Gender and Authority in the Church” and to present it at a special Saturday session to the whole deacon board. It was one of the worst meetings I’ve ever attended.

"It became clear how divided our church was. Some of the deacons truly delighted in the clear teaching of Scripture. Others were aghast and enraged.” 

Of course his clear teaching was that women should not be deacons. So, if I disagree with his clear teaching, does that mean I don't "delight" in Scripture?

Apparently he “knows” that his is the only clear teaching and everyone else must be wrong. You will see what he says later on that will confirm this.

Davis mind reads the response of some deacons.

“I remember the horrible looks on the face of the most powerful leader of the deacons. At one point, I was teaching them that God has prescribed in Scripture how the church should conduct its life together, and along the way I referred to the moment when God struck Uzzah dead for his irreverent act of touching the ark. At that moment, this deacon recoiled in his chair, appalled. He gestured down at the open Bible on the table before him and said, “I could never believe in a God like that!”

Does he really know what the deacon meant? Could he have been appalled that Davis was equating the use of that passage and the conflicts at FBC? It sure sounds like it to me.

Does the Lord still strike people dead for touching the current day ark? Is Davis subtly implying that disobeying his teaching was similar to touching the ark which God clearly forbade? Even if Davis did not mean this, his ham-handed treatment of this teaching could have led those present to misunderstand his intent.

Davis wanted to change the church polity to match his “clear” view of Scripture.

“At other times of the week, such as Sunday and Wednesday evenings, I taught on gender and authority. I was always clear that the issue was not about “women deacons,” but about ensuring that our polity matched Scripture, which meant deacons should not be viewed as spiritual leaders in the church.”

Church members, who disagreed with Davis, are classified as nominal, unregenerate church members.

“During this time, the ministry of the Word of God was having a powerful and divisive effect on the church. The genuine saints were being deeply challenged and were growing and flourishing, while the nominal, unregenerate church members were becoming openly hostile.”

Election of woman leads to Davis' call to repent.

"On Sunday, August 19, 2001, cards with the results from the deacon election were distributed to the congregation. As I already mentioned, I stood up and called the church to repent." (Read yesterday’s blog post).

Couple leaves church and call Davis a liar.

“Soon after this first woman’s election, she felt pressure from godly friends in the church and decided to resign. She and her husband then left the church, but not quietly or in love. At a climactic church conference, the husband, who had up to that point been my friend, essentially called me a liar in front of the whole church. He and his wife left the room and the church from that moment. “

Could it be that this couple were telling the truth? Could it be that they believed that Davis hid his true intent from the pastoral search committee in order to assume the pastorate? Could it be that they were implying that Davis pulled a classic bait and switch?

That couple may have been onto something.

“From the first time I read FBC's constitution and by-laws, I knew that the church needed to change its by-laws on deacons. So I learned how to change a by-law at FBC, followed the procedure, and wrote a new by-law saying that only men could be nominated, elected, and serve as deacons.”

Did Davis inform FBC of his objection prior to accepting his position? Surely such a doctrinally minded individual read the bylaws prior to his agreement to be pastor.

He discusses his intense agony and adds some information that might lead some to logically believe he knew about the bylaws and planned to change them prior to arriving at FBC.

He accuses the people in FBC of being “hate filled”. Could it be that they were very upset with the machinations of Davis and not full of hate?

“It was not a particularly difficult passage to preach on, but I was preaching to so many hate-filled faces that I found myself clutching the sides of the pulpit to keep upright." 

"I barely made it through the sermon, then went home to recuperate for the evening service. I lay down in a hammock out in the backyard and prayed. I had just found out that week that one of the opposing church members was organizing a lawsuit against me. The reason? “Breach of contract,” I had heard. The logic was that, in changing the church’s by-laws which I had known about before coming to the church, I had misrepresented myself to the church.”

Davis continues to call those, who opposed the bylaws change, wicked!

He is given Psalm 37 to read which he finds helpful. He is right and his opposition is wicked!

“Wicked people make plots and schemes against the righteous, but they will fail. In the end, the righteous will inherit the earth, and the wicked will be no more. So do not fret or be anxious; do not worry or be alarmed. Simply stand firm and watch the deliverance that God will bring about.”

He then makes what appears to be a judgment on the salvation of those who disagree with him.

He calls those who disagreed with him “unregenerate.”

I took a branch (with leaves on it) with me to work and still have it. The leaves are completely dead now, because I cut that branch almost ten years ago. It represented the end of the era of unregenerate church members dominating the life of FBC.

Unregenerate means not reborn spiritually and not repentant

Andy Davis, you are wrong to say such a horrible thing. I know the couple who left your church. They may disagree with you but they love and follow the Lord. Scripture is very clear that you should not judge the salvation of others. In fact, this may be the worst thing you could have done and you need to repent.

When the church voted to keep women from becoming deacons, he calls it “following biblical authority."

Look what he calls the final vote when he gets his way. “It was something like 170-120 in favor of following biblical authority.” So all of the 120 nays were made by those who disagree with "biblical" authority? I don't buy it.

He continues to demean, years later, decent people who disagreed with him.

“Simply put: Do you believe the faithful ministry of the Word of God is sufficient to reform a drifting church, to revive a dying church, to convict a sinning church?”

He advises people to avoid gossip but does he?

“We need to be especially careful to avoid gossip and slander against people who have wronged us or are opposing us.”

So calling people wicked, unregenerate, hate filled sinners is loving and kind? His very article is full of gossip and innuendoes and the people involved have no way to respond. Maybe they should start a blog?

Here is the crux of the matter and the church better be prepared!

Davis believes that there are no non-essentials!

I once heard a story about a well-known preacher of the Word whose expository ministry has helped shaped my own. To this day, this man is characterized by boldness and uncompromising clarity in his preaching, but he also tends to admit of no gray areas. Everything is equally true, certain, clear, essential.”

The Calvinistas are on the move and you better believe exactly as they do or you may be unregenerate and a sinner. Can you imagine if they had the governmental power of Calvin? Good night-grab the babies and head for the hills!

The Donner Party

Eagle, one of our frequent commenters, made an astute observation today. He said that post-evangelical church is beginning to behave like the Donner Party.

From Wikipedia here we learn about the Donner Party:

"The Donner Party (sometimes called the Donner–Reed Party) was a group of American pioneers who set out for California in a wagon train. Delayed by a series of mishaps, they spent the winter of 1846–47 snowbound in the Sierra Nevada. Some of the emigrants resorted to cannibalism to survive, eating those who had succumbed to starvation and sickness."

We are in real trouble. If everything is essential, just wait until the boys start imposing all sorts of essentials. And guess what? They get to identify the essentials!  Davis is friendly with Al Mohler. Mohler believes that Young Earth creationism must be stressed and considers it his priority for the coming year. Off with my head, right?

Folks, we will be eating our own, and Davis is quite clear that it is justified.

What Davis wants to do

“The reformation of First Baptist Church is one of the greatest displays of God’s glory that I have ever seen in my life. My prayer is that God will use this narrative to effect similar reformation in other churches around the world for his glory.”

Are you scared yet?


Comments

Andy Davis and First Baptist Durham: I Wonder If Wormwood Grinned? — 313 Comments

  1. I hope women (and men) will slam their wallets shut and stop donating their money to these disrespectful NeoCalvinist brats and the gulags they run.

  2. The Devil must be pleased with Andy Davis’ work of trying to prevent half the population from preaching and teaching the Word of God and sowing so much discord.

  3. You’re right – that was a long post.

    TL;DR…

    Andy Davis is just another wannabe big noise. I.e., another neocal lost soul. What is wrong with these people? Do they not understand the damage they are doing?

  4. roebuck wrote:

    You’re right – that was a long post.
    TL;DR…
    Andy Davis is just another wannabe big noise. I.e., another neocal lost soul. What is wrong with these people? Do they not understand the damage they are doing?

    Roebuck, There’s a reason that the NeoCal Boyz like at 9Marks, Tim Chailles and the like don’t take comments on their blogs. They can’t stand rigorous discourse on these matters.

  5. …but I was preaching to so many hate-filled faces that I found myself clutching the sides of the pulpit to keep upright.

    I barely made it through the sermon, then went home to recuperate for the evening service.

    Preacher Davis considers himself the ultimate martyr. All he needs to add is that the “hate-filled” people picked up stones to put him to death.

  6. Are you scared yet?

    Nope, not one bit. First of all, because I don’t attend an Evangelical or SBC church. Secondly, even if I did attend an Evangelical or SBC church, I wouldn’t be afraid because these Calvinistas are deceptive, arrogant, manipulative, power-hungry, control-freakery cowards. “Who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is right“. Now there’s a Scripture to remember when confronting these Neo-Calvinists!

  7. Andy Davis was called to pastor FBC Durham in October 1998. It was a full decade later that Dee and I began investigating this group that we have come to describe as Calvinistas. We had no clue what was going on until then, and we don't expect many in the body of Christ did either. As a reminder, Collin Hansen's Young Restless Reformed article that appeared in Christianity Today wasn't published until the fall of 2006.

    I highly doubt FBC Durham’s congregation was Calvinist-leaning when Davis was called. Sounds like the pastor search committee and elders pulled a fast one on their brothers and sisters in Christ.

  8. Off-topic. Prayer request.

    Please continue to pray for CHRISTIANE who had eye surgery this morning.

    Thank you.

  9. Velour wrote:

    I hope women (and men) will slam their wallets shut and stop donating their money to these disrespectful NeoCalvinist brats and the gulags they run.

    You’ve got that right, Velour. These arrogant Neo-Cal pastors have the gall to bite the hand that feeds them, and to attack the people who hire them, and support them with their tithes and church involvement.

  10. Deb wrote:

    @ Velour:
    Thanks for the reminder. I have been praying for her. Hope she will give us an update when she’s able.

    Thank you so much Deb!

    Yes, when Christiane is sufficiently recovered it will be nice to get an update from her.

  11. Velour wrote:

    Off-topic. Prayer request.

    Please continue to pray for CHRISTIANE who had eye surgery this morning.

    Thank you.

    How did it go? Praying!!

  12. “Do whatever you can to get these idiots fighting over … tertiary matters of doctrine.” (9Marks)

    The degree of New Calvinist arrogance continues to amaze me! “Idiots” is most likely a not-so-subtle reference to the multitude of non-Calvinist Southern Baptists across America (who aren’t smart enough to understand reformed theology). “Tertiary matters of doctrine” is most likely a reference to Al Mohler’s theological triage in which he categorizes church doctrines into essential and non-essential categories. To the New Calvinists taking over SBC churches, soteriology (God’s plan of salvation) is a non-essential not worth fussing about. Think about it … God’s plan of salvation! If you can persuade millions of Southern Baptists to buy into this – to diminish the Cross of Christ for ALL people, to surrender their “whosoever will” preaching/teaching – then you can more easily change the default belief and practice of a once-great evangelistic denomination.

  13. I have never been so glad to be a nondenom Charismatic as now….thank God my church understands God’s heart for women.

    I guess the one thing that sticks in my craw regarding calvinistas is the arrogance that is displayed regarding their interpretation of Scripture. Particularly since it is so easy to poke holes in it. I will not judge hearts who believe they are honoring the Lord. I will leave that to Him. But I know what it LOOKS like.

  14. “He claims that Christianity is going to be more controversial, and Satan is fighting to marginalize it.”

    Christianity in America is becoming more controversial because of the New Calvinist movement. There’s no doubt that Satan is in the middle of things … he comes to steal, kill and destroy. But just whose side is Satan on in this battle? Who is going about stealing churches, killing fellowships, and destroying a once-great denomination?

  15. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    Velour wrote:
    Off-topic. Prayer request.
    Please continue to pray for CHRISTIANE who had eye surgery this morning.
    Thank you.
    How did it go? Praying!!

    We will know how it went when Christiane checks back in with us.

    I am praying that it went well.

  16. Max wrote:

    Andy Davis named his son Calvin. He is serious about the new reformation!

    What did Andy Davis name his daughter(s)?

    Doormat and Wall-To-Wall carpeting?

  17. Still have hopes these Calvinistas will be brought down.
    If not, I envision many just avoiding church altogether, not that they don’t love the Lord, but rather sad they can’t find the Lord in Church.
    Between addressing parishioners as idiots, and daring to think they in anyway could substitute for Lewis, I am appalled.

    These men come across so full of pride, arrogance. I picture them sneering at their lowly, stupid flock….Sunday after Sunday.( while the plate is passed )

    Lord help me not to despise these men, yet fight their message I will.

  18. Let's be patently clear…

    Andy Davis and his cohorts are the ones who boasted about this church takeover via the internet.

  19. “North Carolina pastor Andy Davis revitalized his church through verse-by-verse expository preaching”
    Imagine if Peter had done this on the day of Pentecost… Oh the revitalization!

  20. Even Tim Bayly doesn’t speak as harshly of Gordon-Conwell and its egalitarian faculty as this guy does.

  21. I believe another Gordon Conwell alum helped Andy Davis secure his position at First Baptist Church Durham… That would be Mark Dever.

    And I seem to recall that it was Andy Davis, who was pastoring a church in Massachusetts, to whom Mark Dever first wrote about the 9Marks. Dever was 'across the pond' at the time…

  22. @ Nancy2 (aka Kevlar):
    From TGC article:
    “As he approaches his 20th year as pastor of FBC Durham, Davis isn’t complacent now that the external threats to his ministry have subsided. His new book, Revitalize: Biblical Keys to Helping Your Church Come Alive Again [read an excerpt], shares the story of FBC Durham’s renewal and offers guidance on how other pastors can revive their churches. “

  23. Mae wrote:

    I envision many just avoiding church altogether

    Within a few short years, SBC churches will be populated by members in their 20s-40s. Most over 50 will be done with the local church, even though they paid for it!

  24. “North Carolina pastor Andy Davis revitalized his church through verse-by-verse expository preaching”

    Which should be rephrased:

    “North Carolina pastor Andy Davis ‘reformed’ his church through verse-by-verse ‘eisegesis’ preaching.”

  25. JeffT wrote:

    And that, folks, is why “love” is NOT one of the 9 Marks of a ‘healthy’ church.

    The label '9Marks of a Healthy Church' is just as misleading as the names of these two countries:

    Iceland and Greenland

  26. JeffT wrote:

    And that, folks, is why “love” is NOT one of the 9 Marks of a ‘healthy’ church.

    Or any of the other fruits of the Spirit: joy, peace, patience, kindness, faithfulness, goodness, gentleness, & self-control.

  27. Deb wrote:

    @ Darlene:

    Just think, Andy Davis had been the pastor at FBC Durham when he was rubbing elbows with these guys.

    “Bad company ruins good morals” comes into play here.

  28. In God's sovereignty, Dee was able to discover what REALLY occurred at FBC Durham, and we just happen to have a blog that's fairly well read so we can get the rest of the story out there. 😉

  29. Deb wrote:

    I believe another Gordon Conwell alum helped Andy Davis secure his position at First Baptist Church Durham… That would be Mark Dever.

    And I seem to recall that it was Andy Davis, who was pastoring a church in Massachusetts, to whom Mark Dever first wrote about the 9Marks. Dever was ‘across the pond’ at the time…

    “One Hand Washes the Other…”

  30. Velour wrote:

    Max wrote:

    Andy Davis named his son Calvin. He is serious about the new reformation!

    What did Andy Davis name his daughter(s)?

    Doormat and Wall-To-Wall carpeting?

    Ofandrew until they are sold off to their husbands to cement alliances with other Reformed Great Houses.
    Then Of[husband’s name].

  31. Max wrote:

    Andy Davis named his son Calvin. He is serious about the new reformation!

    Named after his REAL god.

  32. From the OP:

    Davis mind reads the response of some deacons.

    “I remember the horrible looks on the face of the most powerful leader of the deacons. At one point, I was teaching them that God has prescribed in Scripture how the church should conduct its life together, and along the way I referred to the moment when God struck Uzzah dead for his irreverent act of touching the ark.

    At that moment, this deacon recoiled in his chair, appalled. He gestured down at the open Bible on the table before him and said, “I could never believe in a God like that!”

    Compare to this from Luke 8 (I do believe that this woman would have been considered “unclean”):

    As Jesus was on his way, the crowds almost crushed him.

    43 And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years, but no one could heal her. 44 She came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak, and immediately her bleeding stopped.

    45 “Who touched me?” Jesus asked.

    When they all denied it, Peter said, “Master, the people are crowding and pressing against you.”
    46 But Jesus said, “Someone touched me; I know that power has gone out from me.”

    47 Then the woman, seeing that she could not go unnoticed, came trembling and fell at his feet.

    In the presence of all the people, she told why she had touched him and how she had been instantly healed.

    48 Then he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace.”

  33. Deb wrote:

    In God’s sovereignty, Dee was able to discover what REALLY occurred at FBC Durham, and we just happen to have a blog that’s fairly well read so we can get the rest of the story out there.

    Is there an actual recording or transcript of Andy Davis’ sermon from August 2001 in which he told the congregation to repent?

  34. Danny Akin, SEBTS president, HIGHLY recommends Andy Davis’ book. Davis has been a visiting professor in church history at Southeastern.

    https://www.danielakin.com/what-im-reading-51217/

    Revitalize: Biblical Keys to Helping Your Church Come Alive Again, (Andy Davis) — This book by my friend Andy Davis came out recently, and it is superb. Here is the endorsement I was pleased to write for it: “This is a really good book in so many ways. Pastor Andy Davis is humble and honest, biblical and practical as he helps us understand what is required to turn around a dying church. And, he is an excellent writer which makes reading REVITALIZE a joy. I will refer to this book again and again in the future because it is s fount of wisdom. I cannot commend it highly enough.”

    You can read other endorsements at this link:

    http://bakerpublishinggroup.com/books/revitalize/379710

  35. “As the SBC 2017 convention gets underway next week, we hope they know exactly what is going on in the area of “revitalization”.” (Dee)

    Well, you would think SBC’s non-Calvinist majority would have a clue by now! The New Calvinists are “revitalizing” the SBC to death! Most denominational entities are now solidly under the control of New Calvinist leaders – including key seminaries, home and foreign mission agencies, and publishing house. The church planting program is starting 1,000 new churches per year, most led by YRR pastors fresh out of seminary. A growing number of SBC churches are falling victim to New Calvinist stealth and deception as reformed pastors lie their way past search committees. This whole movement looks nothing like Christ … you would think the messengers going to SBC’s annual convention next week would complain about that. But, they won’t … under the trance cast over them, they will hold hands, sing kumbaya, and go home. The SBC I have known for 60+ years is done … “whosoever will” has no seat at the new table.

  36. JYJames wrote:

    @ Velour:
    Praying for our dear Christiane. And, yes, update.

    Thanks, Velour
    I’m checking in, typing with one eye bandaged and extremely grateful for the prayers from people here. As far as I know, all is well. Pain block wore off but no pain noticed yet (at least I think pain block wore off 🙂 )

    Prayed for many today, while going through the procedure, as I know that we in the Body of Christ share one another’s troubles and my surgery journey reinforced that very basic teaching of our faith … if folks ever wonder if any good comes out of our own many troubles that are endured, I always think it must be so that our own well of empathy and compassion for the suffering of others will be deepened. After many, many years, I have come to know this personally in my own ‘kneeling theology’.

    Love to all. Thanks again, good people. 🙂

  37. Re

    The church had just elected a woman deacon for the first time in its history, and deacons in our church’s polity were treated as spiritual leaders with shepherding responsibility for the flock. I had been teaching the congregation that Scripture reserves spiritual leadership to men, and I had made private efforts to forestall this result. Still, the church voted in a woman as an authoritative spiritual leader.”

    I’m curious as to what dyed- in- the- wool sexists like this think a woman in a leadership position is going to differently from a man, or teach differently?

    I would assume a woman in a leading role in a church is going to teach the same stuff a man would, such as the need for an unsaved person for accept Jesus as savior and so on. The content that comes out of the person’s mouth is no different just because of the biological sex of the speaker.

  38. Deb wrote:

    Danny Akin, SEBTS president, HIGHLY recommends Andy Davis’ book.

    The new reformers all take care of each other. They slobber forth syrupy promotions of the brethren at every opportunity. Their flattery is sickening. They carry a mantle of arrogance as a group. No one in the heavenly realm would HIGHLY recommend any of them.

  39. Max wrote:

    The New Calvinists are “revitalizing” the SBC

    Is this re-branding have money as part of the end game? New and different, the next big thing, is typically a growth industry strategy. Basic marketing practice.

  40. I don’t expect anyone to agree with me theologically 100%, but I can’t imagine taking a job knowing that I fundamentally disagreed with the church polity. Not even just disagreed, but considered it sinful. And he waited three years before he made it an issue?

  41. @ Christiane:
    Many blessings and prayers for you, dear lady. May you experience healing from our Lord Jesus and awake refreshed in the morning.

  42. Dave A A wrote:

    “North Carolina pastor Andy Davis revitalized his church through verse-by-verse expository preaching”
    Imagine if Peter had done this on the day of Pentecost… Oh the revitalization!

    As one sharp Wartburger noted months ago that not even Jesus did expository preaching.

    Precisely!

  43. Jerome wrote:

    Andy’s wife Christine was herself a deacon at New Meadows Baptist Church, Topsfield, Mass.:

    Probably because the average Massachusetts Baptist at the time wouldn’t have accepted deacons limited to only men.

    I’d like to ask Andy Davis how he gets around Phoebe being called a “diakonos” in Romans. (That’s the word translated “deacon” today.) Probably the same way they get around the use of the word “presbyteros” to describe older women in 1 Timothy. As I said on Twitter, when it’s a man, it’s a title. When it’s a woman, it’s a description.

  44. @ Christiane:

    Beloved friend CHRISTIANE, that’s wonderful news about your eye surgery. Thank you for praying for all of us. I was up very early here in California praying for you, as I think you live on the East Coast and I didn’t want to miss your surgery time.

    Continue to get your rest and let us know how you are doing.

    Love and hugs,

    Velour in California

  45. preacher’s wife wrote:

    I don’t expect anyone to agree with me theologically 100%, but I can’t imagine taking a job knowing that I fundamentally disagreed with the church polity. Not even just disagreed, but considered it sinful. And he waited three years before he made it an issue?

    The New Calvinists are very sneaky and very patient. They know it takes a few years to fully implement their goals. Slowly but surely they seek out their comrades who will help in securing revitalization in the local church body.

  46. I copied this from a review of Andy Davis’ book from Amazon:
    “The fourteenth chapter surveys the need to raise up additional men as leaders in the church to assist in the revitalization process and move the church forward in the future. ”

    Hmmmm, “yes men”???

  47. JeffT wrote:

    And that, folks, is why “love” is NOT one of the 9 Marks of a ‘healthy’ church.

    Exactly, Jeff. The ONLY mark that Jesus talked about for a healthy church – LOVE – never made it to Mark Dever’s 9Marks list.

    But then Mark Dever, from everything that I’ve read of his and from his horrible treatment of long-time Christians at Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, D.C. is a man who lacks Love.

  48. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:

    I copied this from a review of Andy Davis’ book from Amazon:
    “The fourteenth chapter surveys the need to raise up additional men as leaders in the church to assist in the revitalization process and move the church forward in the future. ”
    Hmmmm, “yes men”???

    This reminds me, we should really think about writing some snappy reviews and posting them on Google beneath the name of Andy’s church. (People did that to Julie Anne’s church in Oregon when her hateful ex-NeoCalvinist pastor sued her.)

    YELP reviews all negative reviews and I don’t trust their website for that very reason because they omit credible, negative reviews.

  49. I was born and raised in the southern Baptist convention. My grandfather was a southern baptist preacher and I went to home school. I am an atheist now.

    Please think how the little girls in these misogynistic toxic churches feel when they see and hear fighting that they can not be deacons, but the sex that repeatedly sexually terrorizes them every week can. My rapist was special because he was a man, deserving to rule over me because he was a man. I deserved to be submissive and ruled over because I was unlucky enough to be born a little girl.

    Andy Davis’s insecurities, selfishness, heartlessness, and misogyny is so very familiar to me. Like the jerks of my childhood, Andy Davis is an embarrassing misogynistic man.

    Why don’t any of these women think of their daughters? Does it make them feel good for their daughters to be hated, demeaned, and used? If you loved your daughter you would not take her to any church that promoted Andy Davis’s ideas.

  50. Velour wrote:

    YELP reviews all negative reviews and I don’t trust their website for that very reason because they omit credible, negative reviews.

    should read: “YELP removes…”

  51. Christiane, that’s great news about your surgery. Prayers for continued healing.

  52. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:

    I copied this from a review of Andy Davis’ book from Amazon:
    “The fourteenth chapter surveys the need to raise up additional men as leaders in the church to assist in the revitalization process and move the church forward in the future. ”

    Hmmmm, “yes men”???

    And “move the church forward”? That’s corporate-speak. Is the church a corporation?

  53. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:

    I copied this from a review of Andy Davis’ book from Amazon:
    “The fourteenth chapter surveys the need to raise up additional men as leaders in the church to assist in the revitalization process and move the church forward in the future. ”

    “revitalization” = Code for Calvinization.

  54. Guest wrote:

    Why don’t any of these women think of their daughters?

    I am very sorry, Guest, to hear about the horrific, felonious abuse that you were subjected to.

    There are record amounts of abuse in these patriarchial/complementarian promoting churches.
    I am not surprised.

    At my ex-gulag, Grace Bible Fellowship of Silicon Valley, the pastors/elders put a Megan’s List sex offender in a position of leadership and trust, gave him church membership, and told no one. I discovered him by accident while doing a legal research project for a former county sex crimes prosecutor. The pastors/elders had me in a meeting and screamed at me, defending the guy. Being a man who says a few words of Jesus gets them carte blanche access in that world, while being a woman no matter how good, educated, solid Christian believer…will always get women (and girls) treated like dirt. It’s a false Gospel that they sell in that world.

    I am sorry for what you’ve been through.

  55. I’ve heard the “no non-essentials” thing before. It was from the new pastor of a small but established local church, who had been hired and imported by the elders. The new pastor had been on staff at McArthur’s seminary in CA, so I’m guessing that he got his “no non-essentials” philosophy from Johnny Mac.

    For what it’s worth, this particular reformation didn’t take, and the church survived under new management for about a year.

  56. “I commend to you our sister Phoebe, who is a servant (diakonos) of the church which is at Cenchrea; that you receive her in the Lord in a manner worthy of the saints, and that you help her in whatever matter she may have need of you; for she herself has also been a helper of many, and of myself as well.”

    Romans 16:1-2

  57. preacher’s wife wrote:

    I don’t expect anyone to agree with me theologically 100%, but I can’t imagine taking a job knowing that I fundamentally disagreed with the church polity. Not even just disagreed, but considered it sinful. And he waited three years before he made it an issue?

    They have one goal…..turning a church to a reformed congregation. They know before they step into the pulpit what the plan is. Step by step they implement the planned takeover.
    It took about three years for the takeover at our former church.
    First step is to minimize, undercut anyone who appeared to be in opposition. Chase them out, or belittle their concerns. They buddy up to men they know are weak in doctrine,or who are easily flattered by having the Pastor become their friends.
    Meanwhile, they are working on new language for the by laws.
    After a few years the bait has been set, the yes men assembled, and it’s all over.

  58. I just heard this week that there will be another female Ordained Minister in my family. This makes 3 that I know of. Many other women are very highly involved in teaching Sunday School, etc. I’m sure they even (gasp) teach mixed Sunday school classes with men in them. I’m imagine that Andy Davis would think we are all heretics and unbelievers. Not me. My family rocks. Both men and women in my family are ordained ministers. We are all equal in the eyes of God.

    Christine – so glad your eye surgery went well. I have also prayed for others when at the hospital for procedures. Or for those around me. Thank you for doing that. We are called to minister where ever we are at and to pray for those in need. Take care my friend. God continue to give you a swift healing.

  59. Mae wrote:

    First step is to minimize, undercut anyone who appeared to be in opposition. Chase them out, or belittle their concerns. They buddy up to men they know are weak in doctrine,or who are easily flattered by having the Pastor become their friends.
    Meanwhile, they are working on new language for the by laws.
    After a few years the bait has been set, the yes men assembled, and it’s all over.

    And “The Rule of The Part is Forever.”

  60. Don't know if Wormwood's grinning, but Screwtape is laughing his a$$ (ed.) off.

  61. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    And “move the church forward”? That’s corporate-speak. Is the church a corporation?

    “WE ARE UNITED BEHIND THE VISIONARY!”
    — Pastor Furtick coloring book

  62. Guest wrote:

    Why don’t any of these women think of their daughters? Does it make them feel good for their daughters to be hated, demeaned, and used?

    Because they are Very, very Submissive.
    “Stay Sweet!”

  63. Darlene wrote:

    The New Calvinists are very sneaky and very patient. They know it takes a few years to fully implement their goals. Slowly but surely they seek out their comrades who will help in securing revitalization in the local church body.

    “The patience of the Communists is incredible.”
    — State Dept diplomat during the Cold War

  64. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes wrote:

    I’d like to ask Andy Davis how he gets around Phoebe being called a “diakonos” in Romans. (That’s the word translated “deacon” today.) Probably the same way they get around the use of the word “presbyteros” to describe older women in 1 Timothy.

    You mean “Phoebias”, a MAN like “Junias”?

  65. Daisy wrote:

    I’m curious as to what dyed- in- the- wool sexists like this think a woman in a leadership position is going to differently from a man, or teach differently?

    Because just her Presence would emasculate all the Gospelly Manly Men.

  66. preacher’s wife wrote:

    And he waited three years before he made it an issue?

    SBC’s Founders Ministries in their “Quiet Revolution” recommend that the new reformers slowly introduce their theology on a church they are taking over. A book by that name is a sort of how-to play book … the Founders are running a real deal on “A Quiet Revolution” right now – only $3.00! http://press.founders.org/shop/a-quiet-revolution/

  67. Max wrote:

    Within a few short years, SBC churches will be populated by members in their 20s-40s. Most over 50 will be done with the local church, even though they paid for it!

    They may be some of my cohorts, but this 30 year old wants nothing to do with that … um … skubalon!

  68. preacher's wife wrote:

    Not even just disagreed, but considered it sinful. And he waited three years before he made it an issue?

    It took that amount of time to find the yes men and the *go along with anything* folks in the congregation. It appears to me that Andy Davis came to the church to specifically change it to his way of doing things. It worked but not without deliberately hurting some very decent folks.

    Andy Davis, along with a few others, should apologize but they won't. The sad thing is that these *leaders* know what decent people my friends are.

  69. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes wrote:

    I’d like to ask Andy Davis how he gets around Phoebe being called a “diakonos” in Romans. (That’s the word translated “deacon” today.) Probably the same way they get around the use of the word “presbyteros” to describe older women in 1 Timothy. As I said on Twitter, when it’s a man, it’s a title. When it’s a woman, it’s a description.

    New Calvinists mainly believe that Baptist deacons with voting power are misnamed and should be called elders. “daikonos” means servant and can apply to any minion, and is not supposed to be a leadership position. But elders can’t be elders if they don’t believe like New Calvinists believe, so they must be replaced if the don’t share the pastors “biblical theology” and “vision” for the church.

    In the TGC article, it made a comment about going up against “powerful deacons and committees” like anyone not agreeing with the pastor was living in sin and needed to be disciplined. The term “powerful deacons” is a pretty strong clue that they don’t believe deacons should have any power.

    Though, there is a problem in the Greek with the term “elder”, and that is the fact that it’s an adjective meaning “elderly” and translated into both genders in the Bible in 1 Tim. 5. You have to only go by the English translations to argue there are no female elders.

  70. JYJames wrote:

    re-branding have money as part of the end game?

    It’s all about taking the stuff. The wealth of those wicked non-Calvinist Southern Baptists has been stored up for the righteous Calvinists, you know. So, it must be OK to lie and deceive your way to collecting what is there for you for the glory of gawd! They have already harvested SBC seminaries, mission agencies, publishing house, and a growing number of churches. And the mainline pew still doesn’t have a clue … it’s as if they are just sitting there saying “Come and get us!”

  71. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    You mean “Phoebias”, a MAN like “Junias”?

    Wow, I never caught that before! The first transgender person in the Bible, you say? Cool!

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Because just her Presence would emasculate all the Gospelly Manly Men.

    New rule: if your masculinity is so fragile that it falls apart upon merely hearing a woman talk about the Bible in your presence, you might be just a wee bit insecure.

  72. Josh wrote:

    Because just her Presence would emasculate all the Gospelly Manly Men.
    //
    New rule: if your masculinity is so fragile that it falls apart upon merely hearing a woman talk about the Bible in your presence, you might be just a wee bit insecure.

    It’s a mystery that someone like John Piper hasn’t figured out that when he says stuff like he does, most people reading are thinking What a wuss! The constant talk about how women can emasculate him… emasculates him.

  73. Max wrote:

    It’s all about taking the stuff. The wealth of those wicked non-Calvinist Southern Baptists has been stored up for the righteous Calvinists, you know. So, it must be OK to lie and deceive your way to collecting what is there for you for the glory of gawd! They have already harvested SBC seminaries, mission agencies, publishing house, and a growing number of churches. And the mainline pew still doesn’t have a clue …

    Let the looting begin.
    “GOD WILLS IT!”

  74. dee wrote:

    The sad thing is that these *leaders* know what decent people my friends are.

    I have met your friends who used to be members of FBC Durham, and they are wonderful people and strong Christians. I am honored to know them!

  75. dee wrote:

    Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:

    Hmmmm, “yes men”???

    It sure seems like women are not needed in the revitalized church.

    Their only purpose is to service the men and make babies.

  76. Jerome wrote:

    Andy’s wife Christine was herself a deacon at New Meadows Baptist Church, Topsfield, Mass

    Interesting that 2 of the 4 deacons at New Meadows were women, where Andy Davis was pastor. Hypocrisy, new revelation from gawd, or just doing what he needed to do to to get into the limelight as an up-and-comer in the new reformation? I wonder what his wife thinks about his change of heart?

  77. So here’s the deal… We can’t turn back the clock on FBC Durham. This stealth takeover happened when no one understood the techniques utilized (from the Quiet Revolution book promoted by the Founders).

    It’s now almost two decades later (from the time Davis became pastor), and we know quite a bit about the Calvinista playbook.

    The question is – are we gonna let it happen at our churches? It’s time to stand up!

  78. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Let the looting begin. “GOD WILLS IT!”

    Just look at those impressive photos of Andy Davis and his incredible prize of FBC Durham. It's obvious that before he was called as pastor, church members made huge financial sacrifices.

    As Davis and his sycophants conducted a stealth takeover, I presume a good number of the members left, leaving Davis and his pet elders in control of an impressive facility (and all the other assets that go along with it).

    Cha Ching! 🙁

  79. dee wrote:

    Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:
    Hmmmm, “yes men”???
    It sure seems like women are not needed in the revitalized church.

    It’s better to be wrong and be a man than it is to be anything else and be a woman!

  80. Deb wrote:

    The question is – are we gonna let it happen at our churches? It’s time to stand up!

    Unfortunately, that’s not going to happen at the national SBC level. At the annual convention next week, they will dodge the subject of the New Calvinist movement within SBC like the plague. Frank Page, President, SBC Executive Committee (a non-Calvinist) has already made a plea to SBC’s 45,000 churches to sit down and shut up about it, agree to disagree, get along to go along, and make room under the big SBC tent for both theologies. Soooo … if anything can be done to stay the proliferation of the new reformation in SBC life, it must be done at the local level by Wartburgers and other watchmen standing up to be counted and shout “Not here in Jesus name!”

  81. Max wrote:

    Jerome wrote:
    Andy’s wife Christine was herself a deacon at New Meadows Baptist Church, Topsfield, Mass
    Interesting that 2 of the 4 deacons at New Meadows were women, where Andy Davis was pastor. Hypocrisy, new revelation from gawd, or just doing what he needed to do to to get into the limelight as an up-and-comer in the new reformation? I wonder what his wife thinks about his change of heart?

    Davis probably did the first church takeover. That is my guess at least. He pioneered that tactic. How he decided to do it is a mystery. I know he was connected to Mark Dever, but I can’t help but think there was some secret society that started recruiting in the 90s.

  82. @ Max:

    Tragically, what you write is true. Let's pray fervently that our brothers and sisters in Christ (at the local level) will have the courage to speak up and stand up against this new incantation of Calvinism.

  83. Velour wrote:

    not even Jesus did expository preaching.

    Imagine He’s preaching on “love your neighbor as yourself”.
    “Rabbi, who is my neighbor?”
    “Your care group leaders will take questions during midweek meetings. Otherwise I’ll never make it through Leviticus by September. Now moving along– the Bible says not to breed mules, rotate crops, or wear a silk tie with your wool suit.”
    Good-bye, Good Samaritan.

  84. ishy wrote:

    I know he was connected to Mark Dever, but I can’t help but think there was some secret society that started recruiting in the 90s.

    = Founders Ministries. Al Mohler, champion of SBC’s New Calvinist movement, was mentored by them.

  85. “If you faithfully preach the Word and don’t shrink back from controversial, pointed topics, you’re going to have a hard time,” Davis said. “I think it’s going to get worse in our culture. I think Christianity is going to become more and more controversial, and Satan is going to try to marginalize it.”

    If he had been talking about things like the trans revolution, the attacks on freedom of speech, etc. I would have been inclined to agree with him. While Calvinistas are busy taking over churches, the wider body of Christ is facing even bigger challenges.

  86. A quick history lesson for those who may not understand the connection between Mark Dever and Andy Davis.

    Dever earned his seminary degree from Gordon-Conwell and pastored a church in New England called New Meadows Baptist from 1985-86. This information is found in the Congressional Record when Dever was a guest chaplain.

    Dever left and went to Cambridge, England where he pursued his Ph.D. He completed it in July, 1992, according to the above referenced info from the Congressional Record.

    On October 5, 1991, Mark Dever (still in Cambridge, England) wrote a letter to the New England church he had pastored (New Meadows) outlining a methodology for choosing a new pastor. According to a post written last year by Dever, this letter was foundational to 9Marks (which was initially called 'Center for Church Reform').

    https://www.9marks.org/article/25-years-ago-nine-marks-was-born/

    Low and behold, the pastor the New Meadows congregation called was none other than Andy Davis, who had also attended Gordon-Conwell, graduating in 1990. Davis left his engineering job in 1992 to pastor New Meadows Baptist Church, according to his bio on the National Center for Family Integrated Churches (see below).

    Dr. Davis was born in Boston, Massachusetts where he later earned his bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from MIT in 1984. He then began his career as a Mechanical Engineer with Eaton-Nova Corporation in Beverly, Massachusetts. He was married to Christine Lee Rogers on May 14, 1988, and they have two sons and three daughters. Dr. Davis started his seminary training while working as an engineer and earned his Masters of Divinity from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in 1990. In 1992, Dr. Davis resigned from his engineering position to pastor the New Meadows Baptist Church in Topsfield, Massachusetts. In 1994, the Davis family followed the call of the Lord to Tokushima, Japan, where they were involved in church planting through the International Mission Board. In 1998, Dr. Davis graduated from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY, with a Ph.D. in Church History. In October of 1998, Dr. Davis accepted a call to be the senior pastor of the First Baptist Church, Durham, NC.

    Notice that in less than two years’ time Andy Davis left the pastorate at New Meadows Baptist to become a missionary in Japan (1994). Looks like the early implementation of the 9Marks didn't work out so well… We would LOVE to hear that story!

    It appears Davis was in Japan for a very short time since he was able to relocate to Louisville, Kentucky and earn his Ph.D. from Southern Seminary in 1998. Pretty fast work…

    Mark Dever and Al Mohler have been friends for a very long time (well over three decades), and Dever has served as a Trustee at SBTS. Is there any doubt whatsoever that Mark Dever had some influence on Andy Davis being called as pastor at First Baptist Durham, just as he had probably influenced New Meadows Baptist? Mohler probably had a hand in it as well…

  87. Deb wrote:

    @ ishy:
    My best guess is that Andy Davis was being coached by Mark Dever and carried out the 9Marks brilliantly.

    I’d be looking into the previous pastor, Alan Moseley. Seems he had a hand in steering the church into what was perceived as a more conservative mode, but I’d guess, a reformed mode.

  88. Hi Deb and Dee, I am in way too busy of a season of life with a high needs grandchild, mother who needs 24 hour care (my house) and still trying to earn my psychology degree, to keep up with my favorite blog here. So I can only skim from time to time. please forgive me if my question doesn’t “go” with this post or has already been covered. Here goes: I love Wade Burleson’s sermons and blog too which I haven’t kept up with lately either. My mother is what I would call a soft Calvinist. I was thinking that Wade is also because I feel I r.e.m. er something you wrote a while back that alluded to that. I was wondering what you could tell me that he wouldn’t mind about any of your posts like these using just the word Calvinist when it seemed you used to add neo or ista. ‘any changes in your thoughts regarding this over the years too? Thanks

  89. @ Mae:

    No doubt there was some influence there.

    Here's an interesting tidbit. My family joined a Baptist church here in Raleigh in 2003 (we were charter members), and in short order the elders tried to get rid of the pastor in an underhanded way. Our pastor ended up resigning on May 1, 2005, and we left the church that same day. After a long search process, our former church called Allan Moseley as Senior Pastor. He stayed there longer than I thought he would and then resigned.

    Now he is an interim pastor at First Baptist Church Rocky Mount.

  90. @ Patti:
    Wade Burleson is what you would call a ‘soft Calvinist’, but I don’t believe he likes to use that label.

    The Calvinistas are the new breed and much different from ‘soft Calvinists’. They are the ‘Young, Restless, and Reformed’ crowd. As a heads up, I will be doing a post on them Friday, so you may want to check it out.

    Obviously, we don’t have a problem with traditional Calvinists, since we feature Wade Burleson’s sermons every weekend. And yes, Dee and I have discussed with Wade where we differ with him in soteriology.

  91. “At other times of the week, such as Sunday and Wednesday evenings, I taught on gender and authority. I was always clear that the issue was not about “women deacons,” but about ensuring that our polity matched Scripture, which meant deacons should not be viewed as spiritual leaders in the church.”

    IOW, it was totally about women deacons!

    I am appalled at this screwtape nonsense. It’s just so gross. I really wish Mark Dever had better sense.

  92. Darlene wrote:

    Nope, not one bit. First of all, because I don’t attend an Evangelical or SBC church.

    I joined a church that accepts women at all levels. I'm not going back.

  93. Divorce Minister wrote:

    The arrogance and narcissism is dumbfounding. Just wow. Really?! No room for charity in nonessentials.

    They basically ran that lady deacon off and then judged her for it? Was Andy sad he didn’t get to personally throw her off the deacon board when he got his way? Because that’s what it sounds like.

    Good for her husband for standing up for her and calling Andy out in public.

  94. This guy reminds me of my former pastor in an article he wrote bragging about his takeover of my former church. The former interim pastor brought him in and we never had s chance to interview him or try out other preachers. It was forced on us.

    “The church’s former pastor had to begin the process of turning an evangelical church fundamental.”

    Um, no. It was always just a relaxed southern/IFB blend. It was a nice place before you came.

    “He and I worked together for two years gently shepherding a group of people whose foundation was shaky and that were held together with social glue.”

    We had social glue because it was a church family you arrogant preacher!! We had a fine foundation in the essentials!

    “When at last it seemed the transition could be safely finalized we exchanged roles. I preached long and hard on Baptist history and doctrine.”

    The most boring sermon year ever.

    “Scores of messages were preached on the need for a separated, biblical philosophy of ministry.”

    Separate separate separate! Chase off everyone on staff that didn’t agree with you.

    “Many people could not handle the transformation.”

    Yes because you were horrible! You would brag from the pulpit about saying how you prayed for your grandpa to get cancer so you could try to witness to him better. You told us to shun anyone who left the church that disagreed with you. You tried to haul up a 16 year old youth group girl who was pregnant and make her read a letter of apology to the church, and publicaky church disciplined,shamed and shunned by your order, two 13 year olds for being sexually molested and assaulted by your golden boy preacher boy intern, all the while letting a woman member who was intentionally shacking up with multiple men and who became pregnant get off scott free. You pushed your yoing married youth pastor so hard that his young wife had a breakdown after their third baby, saying he had to pick between her and the church, and when he went to the leadership to resign, you said his wife was hard hearted and had attitude problems and you were sorry she wasn’t being a good help to his ministry.

    “The switch from a youth department painted black and given over to blaring music videos to one of faithful preaching and Bible exposition was too much for some.”

    Oh good grief, it wasn’t black. It had one wall dark as part of the color scheme. They weren’t “blaring music videos” they were simply the sing along praise and worship.

    “Nevertheless, through a two-year series on the book of Acts entitled ‘In One Accord’ in which unity of philosophy, purpose and execution were emphasized, God enabled us to keep the majority of our families.”

    I wouldn’t wish sitting through two years of expository preaching through Acts on anyone. And lies, I can count on one hand who all of the original people are left. Only two original families with kids are still there.

  95. For all the talk about Calvinism, notice the first thing that he really went for was related to the position of women in leadership.

    THAT is what is truly important to these folks. That is where the rubber meets the road.

  96. I Fear a Cage wrote:

    I can count on one hand who all of the original people are left. Only two original families with kids are still there.

    To remember that is Thoughtcrime.

  97. Deb wrote:

    @ ishy:
    My best guess is that Andy Davis was being coached by Mark Dever and carried out the 9Marks brilliantly.

    i.e. Good Little Party Member.

  98. GSD [Getting Stuff Done] wrote:

    I’ve heard the “no non-essentials” thing before.

    The problem with this theory (among many) is that when you say there are no non-essentials, what you are actually is that 1. someone has to agree with you about EVERYTHING and 2. you are right about EVERYTHING.

    This is a deeply concerning, prideful position to take. Paul even says he doesn’t understand everything, and yet the people reading Paul think they’ve got it figured out? Arrogant, narcissistic and deeply wrong.

  99. Lea wrote:

    For all the talk about Calvinism, notice the first thing that he really went for was related to the position of women in leadership.
    THAT is what is truly important to these folks. That is where the rubber meets the road.

    Allows ESS to be propagated.

  100. I Fear a Cage wrote:

    You would brag from the pulpit about saying how you prayed for your grandpa to get cancer so you could try to witness to him better.

    *jaw drops* Unreal, these people.

    I think ‘social glue’ is a huge part of the purpose of church to began with, so people who complain about it puzzle me exceedingly.

  101. Lea wrote:

    I Fear a Cage wrote:
    You would brag from the pulpit about saying how you prayed for your grandpa to get cancer so you could try to witness to him better.
    *jaw drops* Unreal, these people.
    I think ‘social glue’ is a huge part of the purpose of church to began with, so people who complain about it puzzle me exceedingly.

    As a double cancer patient, this is such a cruel prayer to brag on.
    Having cancer is hard enough without poisoned pastors trying to call cancer down from heaven as a curse. Can anyone imagine Jesus praying for the sheep to get sick??

  102. Mae wrote:

    As a double cancer patient, this is such a cruel prayer to brag on.
    Having cancer is hard enough without poisoned pastors trying to call cancer down from heaven as a curse. Can anyone imagine Jesus praying for the sheep to get sick??

    I’m a cancer survivor and I would think praying for someone else to get cancer would just call down cancer on yourself and not anyone else.

  103. ishy wrote:

    Mae wrote:
    As a double cancer patient, this is such a cruel prayer to brag on.
    Having cancer is hard enough without poisoned pastors trying to call cancer down from heaven as a curse. Can anyone imagine Jesus praying for the sheep to get sick??
    I’m a cancer survivor and I would think praying for someone else to get cancer would just call down cancer on yourself and not anyone else.

    Perhaps….but honestly, I don’t believe illness, sickness, etc. being called down on anyone is heaven sent. We live in a broken world, with broken bodies. For a pastor to cite cancer as a gospel weapon, is a disgusting display of twisted witnessing.

  104. Mae wrote:

    Lea wrote:

    I Fear a Cage wrote:
    You would brag from the pulpit about saying how you prayed for your grandpa to get cancer so you could try to witness to him better.
    *jaw drops* Unreal, these people.
    I think ‘social glue’ is a huge part of the purpose of church to began with, so people who complain about it puzzle me exceedingly.

    As a double cancer patient, this is such a cruel prayer to brag on.
    Having cancer is hard enough without poisoned pastors trying to call cancer down from heaven as a curse. Can anyone imagine Jesus praying for the sheep to get sick??

    The sad thing is, his grandpa did die of cancer. But I don’t think he ever became a believer, from what I’ve heard.

  105. Uncle Satin AKA Dave A A wrote:

    Velour wrote:
    not even Jesus did expository preaching.
    Imagine He’s preaching on “love your neighbor as yourself”.
    “Rabbi, who is my neighbor?”
    “Your care group leaders will take questions during midweek meetings. Otherwise I’ll never make it through Leviticus by September. Now moving along– the Bible says not to breed mules, rotate crops, or wear a silk tie with your wool suit.”
    Good-bye, Good Samaritan.

    +1

    Well played.

  106. From the main artcle up top:
    Eagle, one of our frequent commenters, made an astute observation today. He said that post-evangelical church is beginning to behave like the Donner Party.

    I see that as a good thing because it means that toxic forms of ixtianity will die out.

  107. @ Deb:
    Thanks Deb. I think you may have written about that few years ago too. But I am happy that you will posting about it again because it helps me explain to my mother. She gets a little perturbed with me talking about the Calvinists today, as she is much more in line with Wade. As far as the actual teachings of the Calvinist Church she was raised in and that she raised me in, really has no difference from the neo-calvinists today. They are just enforcing them now. She just never paid attention to them so she never really knew how deeply they disturbed me my whole life. I take everything deeper. I am not satisfied with paradoxical “truth” given by the Calvinists I have always known, including from my mother who finds peace in them and cannot understand why I do not.

  108. OT, but I just read this article by a pastors wife about how you should text them encouragement, but never expect a return text, and don’t expect to be their best friend, because how would someone else at church feel if they knew the pastors wife had a best friend that wasn’t you? Honestly? Doesn’t that kind of BFF jealous go away in high school? Her answers in the comments are very touchy too.

    http://stevenandersonfamily.blogspot.com/2017/05/15-ways-to-be-blessing-to-your-pastors.html

  109. @ Darlene:
    What is very interesting is that Andy Davis has an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering from MIT… I would love to know how he is reconciling his science/engineering background with Ken Ham and YEC…??

  110. I know nothing about FBC Durham, other than what I just read.

    It’s pretty clear to me that Davis knew the church had this policy, but that he was coming and was going to bide his time until the time was right to make such a change.

    What happened during the pastoral search and what was represented by both sides is hard to unravel at this point.

    I know that several years before our church acquired its own property, 2 churches in our area expressed an interest in merging. These were older congregations in older parts of town with declining memberships.

    Our church leadership (all of the elders, including the pastor) had a meeting with their church leadership (a collection of some deacons, some committee people, and some people chosen by the congregation). During the meeting it was so apparent that they loved our pastor. They were also so weary from continual decline and fearful for the future that they would have accepted a “deal” if it had been kept “verbal.”

    But we decided after that meeting that for the health of both churches that we would write a letter to the committee outlining what we felt were the “non-negotiables” with respect to a merger. That is, what were the essentials that our church would require the after-merger situation?

    Putting things in writing, I believe, helped them concentrate. They loved our pastor, his personality etc., and were basically willing to kick the can of potential disagreements down the road.

    There are situations were the urgency of the matter may allow for that, but not usually. It is almost always best to spell things out and to be frank.

    2 weeks after receiving our letter, we received a call from the church stating that they wanted to call off the merger discussions. They did not identify which of our non-negotiables was a deal breaker for them, but clearly one of them was.

    About 3 years later, another church asked us about merging. We had a short meeting. Again, very cordial and very nice.

    But we asked the first church who asked to merge with us if we could dust off our letter and send it to the second church. The first church permitted us to do that.

    So, we took the letter we had sent to the first church and wrote a new cover letter thanking them for the meeting, but stating that we wanted them to see how another merger discussion with another church had gone.

    Within a week or 2, the church called and said that they were not interested in a merger.

    Our church continued to grow and about 12 years ago, we bought property and built. We never merged with another church, though we would have enjoyed the opportunity to do so. But it is never a good idea to paper over significant differences.

    These same lessons, I believe, apply to pulpit committees and such.

    Churches may often be in a tough bind, and when they find a young, personable, and articulate candidate, they often will overlook or deny red flags. Pastoral candidates may do the same.

    I cannot say what happened at FBC Durham, but it appears that the necessary full disclosure and discussion never occurred – for whatever reason.

    I am surprised, frankly, at how quickly this church followed Davis’ direction just a year later. I cannot see anything in this story that indicates the changes were not the result of a democratic decision by the congregation. The heartache and disagreement, however, were not necessary.

  111. Deb wrote:

    Davis was very involved with the homeschooling leaders who LOVE Ken Ham.

    I think it’s all about the benjamins for these guys, except wouldn’t you want to use your engineering degree? Surely he doesn’t make more money pastoring or was he just a really bad engineer?

  112. @ Anonymous Oracle at Delphi:

    Excellent comment! Regarding the changes at the FBC Durham, there does appear to be a three year period (from the time Davis came in 1998 until 2001) before significant changes were made involving the church leadership (deacons becoming elders).

  113. Anonymous Oracle at Delphi wrote:

    I am surprised, frankly, at how quickly this church followed Davis’ direction just a year later. I cannot see anything in this story that indicates the changes were not the result of a democratic decision by the congregation.

    I have some thoughts, but these are just based on what I read.

    First, I have to wonder if the female deacon nomination and election was a bit of a backlash against the changes Davis was trying to make.

    Second, I suspect the mean sermon telling everyone to repent turned a lot of people off. We know the female deacon left the church, I wonder how many others did.

    Third, in some of these situations, the new pastor is quietly bringing new people in. Did that happen here?

    Fourth, the vote was far from unanimous at 170/120. Maybe the people leave and new people coming in was just enough to tip it.

  114. Deb wrote:

    Mae wrote:

    For a pastor to cite cancer as a gospel weapon, is a disgusting display of twisted witnessing.

    Absolutely agree!

    Yep.

  115. Lea wrote:

    I have some thoughts, but these are just based on what I read.
    First, I have to wonder if the female deacon nomination and election was a bit of a backlash against the changes Davis was trying to make.

    I give those church members far more credit than being petty. She was no doubt a highly qualified woman which is why she was nominated.

  116. Velour wrote:

    I give those church members far more credit than being petty. She was no doubt a highly qualified woman which is why she was nominated.

    I did NOT say they were petty!! I’m sure she was qualified, but there must have been many other qualified women in the life of the church and this was the first one nominated? Why?

    To send a message.

  117. Lea wrote:

    Third, in some of these situations, the new pastor is quietly bringing new people in. Did that happen here?

    Fourth, the vote was far from unanimous at 170/120. Maybe the people leave and new people coming in was just enough to tip it.

    Knock and Drag the Projects on Election Day?

    As for “Democratic decision”, every decision made by North Korea is Democratic Democratic Democratic Democratic Democratic. (Rule of thumb: The more adjectives about Democracy in a country’s official name, the nastier a Third World Dictatorship it is.)

  118. Lea wrote:

    Deb wrote:
    Davis was very involved with the homeschooling leaders who LOVE Ken Ham.

    I think it’s all about the benjamins for these guys, except wouldn’t you want to use your engineering degree? Surely he doesn’t make more money pastoring or was he just a really bad engineer?

    Crooked pastors can get very very rich.
    Remember Furtick?
    And the guy at Calvary Temple?
    And all the Lead Pastors of all those Megas in DFW with their private jets?

  119. Mae wrote:

    As a double cancer patient, this is such a cruel prayer to brag on.
    Having cancer is hard enough without poisoned pastors trying to call cancer down from heaven as a curse. Can anyone imagine Jesus praying for the sheep to get sick??

    “O GREAT CHEMOSH! O GREAT BAAL! SEND DEATH AND DESTRUCTION DOWN ON THESE…”
    — some Fifties-vintage Hollywood Bible movie (“Story of Ruth?”)

  120. Mae wrote:

    Perhaps….but honestly, I don’t believe illness, sickness, etc. being called down on anyone is heaven sent. We live in a broken world, with broken bodies. For a pastor to cite cancer as a gospel weapon, is a disgusting display of twisted witnessing.

    He’s not a Pastor, he’s a Witch-Man, putting a Hex on someone with his Familiar Spirit(s).
    Hexerai, not Pow-Wow/Braucherai.

  121. These case studies are very insightful and helpful. Thank you for your work in bringing situations such as this to light. Our churches would be much healthier if those serving in the office of Pastor did more shepherding and less CEO’ing, showing more concern for the hearts of the people and less about polity, gender, and authority.

  122. @ Deb:
    I do know of people that are well trained in modern science, and still hold to YECism…. However, they must function/think in a “compartmentalized” way.

  123. Lea wrote:

    Velour wrote:
    I give those church members far more credit than being petty. She was no doubt a highly qualified woman which is why she was nominated.
    I did NOT say they were petty!! I’m sure she was qualified, but there must have been many other qualified women in the life of the church and this was the first one nominated? Why?
    To send a message.

    Lea, I didn’t say that you used the word “petty”.

    However your speculations that this woman was just nominated “to send a message” are unknown and not facts.

  124. preacher’s wife wrote:

    I don’t expect anyone to agree with me theologically 100%, but I can’t imagine taking a job knowing that I fundamentally disagreed with the church polity. Not even just disagreed, but considered it sinful. And he waited three years before he made it an issue?

    This is exactly how they are taught to takeover churches, though. They are indoctrinated by 9-Marx on how to lie in wait for the perfect time to bring all the polity changes they want to incorporate into the church. The totally despicable aspect of all of this is that it has absolutely nothing to do with loving the congregation and laying down your life for them in service. Call me naive, but I think that’s really what a pastor ought to be doing instead of building their own little kingdoms! Our former YRR pastor tried this same tactic on us, but we called him out on it. He then pronounced that we were just a “dead” church and took his ball and left! He was a liar and deceiver from the beginning and my prayer is that he never tries to do this again to another church!

  125. Velour wrote:

    However your speculations that this woman was just nominated “to send a message” are unknown and not facts.

    Which is why i said “I have to wonder”.

    Velour wrote:

    Lea, I didn’t say that you used the word “petty”.

    You indicated that you thought I thought them petty. I did not. That is why I clarified.

  126. Deb wrote:

    Davis even spoke at the same homeschooling event as Ham back in 2009.

    https://ncfic.org/events/view/sufficiency-of-scripture-2009

    Ham is problematic enough, along with the other speakers at that conference. But the NFCIC itself is a big red flag for me. We had a couple of local churches go down that road, and it gets weird fast. I even listened to some online teaching from Scott Brown, one of those guys who seems very kindhearted and warm at first, but who gets increasingly creepy. I noticed that in their videos, women never spoke, and their faces weren’t seen on camera.

    It was soon after that I ran across TWW, and their article confirmed my suspicions, and added a few more.
    http://thewartburgwatch.com/2011/09/23/ncfic-vision-forum-and-the-bottom-line/

  127. Hey folks, just think about this for a moment. Andy Davis was having conniptions about the church he was pastoring and the main reason, the Big Deal was because the congregation voted for a female deacon. Because of that his opponents were evil, being influenced by Satan, were “unregenerate”, enemies of God. Meanwhile, Neo-Calvinists can be negligent in handling child sex abuse in their churches, try to force wives to reconcile with abusive husbands, excommunicate people for questioning leadership or not being involved in home group Bible studies, or leaving to attend another church w/o the elders’ permission, or any other number of absurdities. And they can lie to pastor search committees about their beliefs and intentions, in order to deceptively & covertly take over a church against the desire of the members, while stealthily bringing in their comrades so as to rewrite the by-laws & establish mandatory church covenants. They call evil good and good evil!

  128. Lea wrote:

    I Fear a Cage wrote:

    You would brag from the pulpit about saying how you prayed for your grandpa to get cancer so you could try to witness to him better.

    *jaw drops* Unreal, these people.

    I think ‘social glue’ is a huge part of the purpose of church to began with, so people who complain about it puzzle me exceedingly.

    Lea, that struck me, too! “Social glue”? Oh, as in: “Love one another” and “bear one another’s burdens”? Since when is that a bad thing?

  129. “I once heard a story about a well-known preacher of the Word whose expository ministry has helped shaped my own. To this day, this man is characterized by boldness and uncompromising clarity in his preaching, but he also tends to admit of no gray areas. Everything is equally true, certain, clear, essential.”

    oh boy,
    another one who knows everything in the tradition of the gnostic heretics of old

    Just one response to the poor people who have God all figured out:
    “‘If you think you have grasped him, it is not God you have grasped’ – si comprehendis non est Deus.”
    ( credited to St. Augustine)

    There is a reason we humans are formed to be capable of ‘awe’ and ‘wonder’, and the person who wakes up one day incapable of those assets because he ‘knows it all’ is also incapable of ‘joy’, the signature sign of the Presence of the Holy Spirit in a person’s life

    the Germans have a word ‘geheimnisvoll’ – it means ‘full of wonder’/ ‘full of mystery’ … darn good word!

  130. @ Darlene:

    Female deacons are considered the encroaching evil while deception, lying, misogyny, giving abusers a pass, excommunicating people for unjust reasons are common practice. And let's not forget the idolization of their preacher celebrities.

  131. dee wrote:

    Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:

    Hmmmm, “yes men”???

    It sure seems like women are not needed in the revitalized church.

    Oh yes they are. Who is gonna cook and serve the men at all those church functions? And let’s not forget about kitchen clean-up. 🙂

  132. Lea wrote:

    Deb wrote:

    Davis was very involved with the homeschooling leaders who LOVE Ken Ham.

    I think it’s all about the benjamins for these guys, except wouldn’t you want to use your engineering degree? Surely he doesn’t make more money pastoring or was he just a really bad engineer?

    Most ‘scientists’ who are Young Earth Creationists are engineers – they have no problem with ‘designers’. It’s biologists and ecologists (such as myself) who really know the science that have a real hard time with creationism.

  133. Deb wrote:

    Davis was very involved with the homeschooling leaders who LOVE Ken Ham. I am wondering the same thing. Davis even spoke at the same homeschooling event as Ham back in 2009.

    It would also appear that they LOVE Voddie Baucham too.

  134. Deb wrote:

    dee wrote:

    The sad thing is that these *leaders* know what decent people my friends are.

    I have met your friends who used to be members of FBC Durham, and they are wonderful people and strong Christians. I am honored to know them!

    It seems *throwing people under the bus is a feature of the New Reformers. Anyone who will not get on board with New Calvinist distinctives is expendable.

  135. Muff Potter wrote:

    It would also appear that they LOVE Voddie Baucham too.

    Yes, Voddie used to be a Council Member of The Gospel Coalition. I recently noticed he has been replaced and has a position at a college or seminary (can't remember the name) in Africa.

    I noticed TGC recently featured a blog post by his now married daughter Jasmine.

  136. FW Rez wrote:

    These case studies are very insightful and helpful.

    We are trying to get this information out there so that unsuspecting congregations will recognize the stealth moves before anything significant happens to change the church polity.

    Perhaps these fellowships need to adopt the mantra:

    If you see something, say something!!!

  137. Deb wrote:

    So here’s the deal… We can’t turn back the clock on FBC Durham. This stealth takeover happened when no one understood the techniques utilized (from the Quiet Revolution book promoted by the Founders).

    It’s now almost two decades later (from the time Davis became pastor), and we know quite a bit about the Calvinista playbook.

    The question is – are we gonna let it happen at our churches? It’s time to stand up!

    Deb, I think it’s time for folks to recruit watchmen & women to warn churches currently undergoing the infiltration of the YRR New Calvinists. Perhaps picketing outside those churches like Deana Holmes does outside Driscoll’s church in Phoenix. And handing out flyers that expose the modus operandi of these New Calvinists.

  138. Another thing that I will add to this post, as a suggestion.

    Traditional Baptist polity makes churches very ripe for “takeover.”

    Let’s face it. The Pastor is going to do the preaching 50 or so Sundays each year. The pastor is going to do the marrying and the burying and a lot of counseling.

    Over time, maybe just 2 or 3 years, people are going to be more inclined to follow the pastor’s direction. If not that, if the pastor is nice and speaks well, the pastor will also attract a following so that over time, more people join who like the pastor and are more willing to follow the pastor’s guidance and suggestions.

    With most Baptist congregations have strict “one person one vote” policies, they are ripe for political organizing, factions, and swings in matters than can be cultural markers of the church one year, and five years later, the church is not recognizable.

    This is not the right thing for all churches, but what we have is a multi-layered process for major changes.

    So, first, the elders (yes, we have elders – eeekkk!!!), have to agree unanimously to make any changes in the doctrinal statement, pastoral hires – anything significant. One elder can vote “no” and the entire process stops. And the elder vote is taken anonymously so that the elder can’t be identified and singled out for pressure. The pastor is an elder and gets only 1 vote – like all the rest of the elders. This keeps the pastor in check.

    Then, if all of the elders agree on an issue, then the matter is submitted to the congregation for discussion and questions.

    A week or so after that, the congregation votes, again by anonymous ballot.

    There are problems with this system, as there are with all systems. But this system makes change very hard. That keeps the culture and existing emphases of the church in tact. Things cannot be changed overnight by a new pastor.

    The elders serve until the voluntarily resign or they are ousted, which takes a 2/3 vote of the elders.

    If a new pastor comes to our church, and the pastor wants to change the doctrinal statement, the bylaws, make some new hire, the pastor has to first convince all existing elders to vote for the change.

    Also, the new pastor cannot “stack” the elder board. New elders have to be nominated by the congregation, approved unanimously by the existing elder board (again, 1 elder can keep someone off), and the approved by the vote of the congregation.

    We have what some people would consider “high profile” (in the religious and business communities in our church) that would be expected to be elders or deacons most places, but they probably never will at our church because of our unique history and polity.

    Again, this polity, like all arrangements, has its weaknesses. But it does keep 1 pastor or other person from trying to “change” the church.

    If change is desired by the congregation, it will eventually come, but it will take a long time and will be the result of a very strong consensus, and not a situation where 51% can run the other 49% out of the church. That is how most congregational churches run, and that’s why church politics in those places can be so prevalent and so vicious, in my opinion.

    In the case of FBC Durham under our polity, Pastor Davis would have needed to get the unanimous consent of the Deacons to change the polity first. One Deacon could have stopped it. If David did get the Deacons on board, he would then have to get congregational approval.

  139. @ Deb:
    Deb, does New Meadows Baptist Church still exist? I tried to find their website but was unsuccessful.

  140. Darlene wrote:

    Oh yes they are. Who is gonna cook and serve the men at all those church functions? And let’s not forget about kitchen clean-up.

    Personally, I no longer provide free catering and maid services for a church that refuses to recognize women as a full part of the Church body.

  141. Darlene wrote:

    @ Deb:
    Deb, does New Meadows Baptist Church still exist? I tried to find their website but was unsuccessful.

    I couldn’t find a website either.

  142. I Fear a Cage wrote:

    This guy reminds me of my former pastor in an article he wrote bragging about his takeover of my former church. The former interim pastor brought him in and we never had s chance to interview him or try out other preachers. It was forced on us.

    IFAC:. Do you have a link to the site where your former pastor brags about his take over of your church? Is he a New Calvinist?

  143. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:

    Darlene wrote:

    Oh yes they are. Who is gonna cook and serve the men at all those church functions? And let’s not forget about kitchen clean-up.

    Personally, I no longer provide free catering and maid services for a church that refuses to recognize women as a full part of the Church body.

    Good for you, Nancy2!

  144. Lea wrote:

    For all the talk about Calvinism, notice the first thing that he really went for was related to the position of women in leadership.

    THAT is what is truly important to these folks. That is where the rubber meets the road.

    Yes, because women must know their place at ALL times! Get out of line and smack her down!

  145. Lea wrote:

    The problem with this theory (among many) is that when you say there are no non-essentials, what you are actually is that 1. someone has to agree with you about EVERYTHING and 2. you are right about EVERYTHING.

    TGC can almost always be counted on to provide timely and excellent backup material to illustrate the topics discussed here. For example, here is a recent post: https://blogs.thegospelcoalition.org/gospeldrivenchurch/2017/06/01/division-begins-with-the-departure-from-the-truth-2/. When sin becomes overly defined (like the YRRs seem to do), then it makes it very easy to justify dismissing others as divisive sinners.

  146. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:

    Darlene wrote:
    Oh yes they are. Who is gonna cook and serve the men at all those church functions? And let’s not forget about kitchen clean-up.
    Personally, I no longer provide free catering and maid services for a church that refuses to recognize women as a full part of the Church body.

    Same here. And no more free babysitting.

  147. @ Deb:
    Is there a graphic with the various networks and their characteristics listed or illustrated with visual heirarchy, and connections and disconnects? (TGC, 9Marks, NCFIC, etc., – trying to keep it straight)

  148. This is off topic but I have a quick question. If a perpetrator takes a guilty plea can he or his family outside of that plea outside of the court say it’s not true? wouldn’t they be violating the plea agreement? If this is done what would be the remedy?

  149. Velour wrote:

    Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:

    Darlene wrote:
    Oh yes they are. Who is gonna cook and serve the men at all those church functions? And let’s not forget about kitchen clean-up.
    Personally, I no longer provide free catering and maid services for a church that refuses to recognize women as a full part of the Church body.

    Same here. And no more free babysitting.

    Free babysitting = what is expected from single females, i.e. – their ministry.

  150. shauna wrote:

    This is off topic but I have a quick question. If a perpetrator takes a guilty plea can he or his family outside of that plea outside of the court say it’s not true? wouldn’t they be violating the plea agreement? If this is done what would be the remedy?

    This is a legal question that only a licensed Texas attorney can answer.

    Please post your question on Avvo dot com or contact the district attorney’s office.

  151. __

    Expeditious Addendum : 1 Timothy 3: 11-12: ” Biblical Qualification For The Office Of Deacon/Deaconesses ?”

    hmmm…

    V. 11 In the Greek:

    Stephens 1550 Textus Receptus
    gunaikaV wsautwV semnaV mh diabolouV nhfaleous pistaV en pasin

    Scrivener 1894 Textus Receptus
gunaikaV wsautwV semnaV mh diabolouV nhfalious pistaV en pasin

    Byzantine Majority
    gunaikaV wsautwV semnaV mh diabolouV nhfaleous pistaV en pasin

    Alexandrian
gunaikaV wsautwV semnaV mh diabolouV nhfalious pistaV en pasin

    Hort and Westcott
gunaikaV wsautwV semnaV mh diabolouV nhfaliouV pistaV en pasin

    Note: Interesting enough, in the Greek text for this verse, all the nouns, all the pronouns are masculine, not feminine.

    In Latin:

    Latin Vulgate
    3:11 mulieres similiter pudicas non detrahentes sobrias fideles in omnibus

    In the English :

    King James Version
    3:11 Even so [must their] wives [be] grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.

    American Standard Version
    3:11 Women in like manner must be grave, not slanderers, temperate, faithful in all things.

    Bible in Basic English
    3:11 Women are to be serious in behaviour, saying no evil of others, controlling themselves, true in all things.

    Darby’s English Translation
    3:11 The women in like manner grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.

    Douay Rheims
    3:11 The women in like manner chaste, not slanderers, but sober, faithful in all things.

    Noah Webster Bible
    3:11 Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.

    Weymouth New Testament
    3:11 Deaconesses, in the same way, must be sober-minded women, not slanderers, but in every way temperate and trustworthy.

    World English Bible
    3:11 Their wives in the same way must be reverent, not slanderers, temperate, faithful in all things.

    Young’s Literal Translation
    3:11 Women — in like manner grave, not false accusers, vigilant, faithful in all things.

    ***

    V. 12 In the Greek:

    Stephens 1550 Textus Receptus
    diakonoi estwsan miaV gunaikoV andreV teknwn kalwV proistamenoi kai twn idiwn oikwn

    Scrivener 1894 Textus Receptus
diakonoi estwsan miaV gunaikoV andreV teknwn kalwV proistamenoi kai twn idiwn oikwn

    Byzantine Majority
    diakonoi estwsan miaV gunaikoV andreV teknwn kalwV proistamenoi kai twn idiwn oikwn

    Alexandrian
diakonoi estwsan miaV gunaikoV andreV teknwn kalwV proistamenoi kai twn idiwn oikwn

    Hort and Westcott
diakonoi estwsan miaV gunaikoV andreV teknwn kalwV proistamenoi kai twn idiwn oikwn

    Note: Interesting enough, in the Greek text for this verse, all the nouns, all the pronouns are masculine, not feminine.

    In Latin:

    Latin Vulgate
    3:12 ‘diacones’ sint unius uxoris viri qui filiis suis bene praesunt et suis domibus

    In English:

    King James Version
    3:12 Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.

    American Standard Version
    3:12 Let deacons be husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.

    Bible in Basic English
    3:12 Let Deacons be husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their houses well.

    Darby’s English Translation
    3:12 Let the ministers be husbands of one wife, conducting their children and their own houses well:

    Douay Rheims
    3:12 Let deacons be the husbands of one wife: who rule well their children, and their own houses.

    Noah Webster Bible
    3:12 Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children, and their own houses well.

    Weymouth New Testament
    3:12 A deacon must be true to his one wife, and rule his children and his own household wisely and well.

    World English Bible
    3:12 Let deacons be husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.

    Young’s Literal Translation
    3:12 Ministrants — let them be of one wife husbands; the children leading well, and their own houses,

    __
    http://www.greeknewtestament.com/B54C003.htm

    ***

    11. their wives–rather, “the women,” that is, the deaconesses. For there is no reason that special rules should be laid down as to the wives of the deacons, and not also as to the wives of the bishops or overseers. Moreover, if the wives of the deacons were meant, there seems no reason for the omission of “their” (not in the Greek). Also the Greek for “even so” (the same as for “likewise,” 1 Timothy 3:8 , and “in like manner,” 1 Timothy 2:9 ), denotes a transition to another class of persons.

    Note: —> Further, there were doubtless deaconesses at Ephesus, such as Phoebe was at Cenchrea ( Romans 16:1, “servant,” Greek, “deaconess”), yet ‘no mention’ is made of them ‘in this Epistle’ if not here; whereas, ‘supposing them to be meant here’, the third chapter ’embraces in due proportion all the persons in the service of the Church.’

    Note: —> Naturally after specifying the qualifications of the deacon, Paul passes to those of the kindred office. the deaconess. “Grave” occurs in the case of both. “Not slanderers” here, answers to “not double-tongued” in the deacons; so “not false accusers” ( Titus 2:3 ). “Sober” here answers to “not given to much wine,” in the case of the deacons ( 1 Timothy 3:8 ). Thus it appears he requires the same qualifications in female deacons as in deacons, only with such modifications as the difference of sex suggested.

    Note: —-> PLINY, in his celebrated letter to Trajan, calls them “female ministers.” 
faithful in all things–of life as well as faith. Trustworthy in respect to the alms committed to them and their other functions, answering to “not greedy of filthy lucre,” 1 Timothy 3:8 , in the case of the deacons.

    12. husbands of one 
ruling their children–There is no article in the Greek, “ruling children”; implying that he regarded the having children to rule as a qualification ( 1 Timothy 3:4 , Titus 1:6). 
their own houses–as distinguished from “the Church of God” the bishops, he mentions the first condition of receiving office, rather than the special qualifications for its discharge. The practical side of Christianity is the one most dwelt on in the Pastoral Epistles, in opposition to the heretical teachers; moreover, as the miraculous gifts began to be withdrawn, the safest criterion of efficiency would be the previous moral character of the candidate, the disposition and talent for the office being presupposed. So in Acts 6:3 , a similar criterion was applied, “Look ye out among you seven men of honest report.” Less stress is laid on personal dignity in the case of the deacon than in that of the bishop.
    __
    http://www.biblestudytools.com/commentaries/jamieson-fausset-brown/1-timothy/1-timothy-3.html

    ***

    “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” -2TI2:15

    “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.” -2TI3:16-17

    But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. -Jas 3:17

    And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. -Rom 12:2

    Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits. -Rom 12:16

    That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. -Rom 15:6

    Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment…-1Co 1:10

    *

    … a bright lamp unto our feet, a wonder light unto our path…

    Absolutely!

    ATB

    Sopy

    🙂

  152. Update on Ted Cummins – teacher who took teenager Elizabeth Thomas from Tennessee to California:
    Trial will be in Nashville on July 25th. He is pleading innocent on all charges, but he told an FBI agent that he and the girl had sexual relations almost every night while they were on the run, and he had planned to take her to Mexico.

  153. Darlene wrote:

    @ Deb: Deb, does New Meadows Baptist Church still exist? I tried to find their website but was unsuccessful.

    Excellent question! Maybe someone who knows will chime in. I’ll try to do some investigating.

  154. Jeffrey J Chalmers wrote:

    @ Deb:
    I do know of people that are well trained in modern science, and still hold to YECism…. However, they must function/think in a “compartmentalized” way.

    Actually it isn’t that hard. If your area of engineering or science is not connected with either astronomy or studying biological evolution, you may not have picked up the knowledge to judge creationism accurately.

    One of the main reasons that I dropped out of the Creation Research Society is that I did not have the knowledge to know if the geology and the biochemistry were reasonable or not. (My field is polymer chemistry)

  155. JYJames wrote:

    @ Deb: Is there a graphic with the various networks and their characteristics listed or illustrated with visual heirarchy, and connections and disconnects? (TGC, 9Marks, NCFIC, etc., – trying to keep it straight)

    Not to my knowledge. The National Center of Family Integrated Churches (NCFIC) is an outlier organization.

    There are very strong connections between TGC and 9Marks.

  156. Do not be called leaders; for One is your Leader, that is, Christ.
    Matthew 23:10 NASB

    So is one that calls himself a spiritual leader rebelling against Christ?

    I have followed this blog for several years. Thankful for all of your effort in establishing a voice in the wilderness.

  157. In some kind of Christian conference in Australia (I think) a complementarian speaker said (if I’m understanding right) that women having short hair are being ungodly (because God intends for all women to have long hair, to distinguish them from men, because all men have short hair),

    AND AND AND
    Women should be submissive to all men in the workplace.

    When cutting your hair can be an ungodly act (by Ann Lim, May 29, 2017)
    https://www.eternitynews.com.au/culture/when-cutting-your-hair-can-be-an-ungodly-act/

    Snippets:

    …She believed it might be more in line with God’s good design to have long hair because it was a visible sign of the difference between men and women in which God delighted.

    ….However, the speakers offered a radical version of complementarianism extending it to the workplace, which surprised many in the audience. This is sometimes called patriarchy.

    One speaker even said that if a woman became a CEO she should perform her role in a way that was helpful to men.

    Good luck with that, complementarians.

  158. Daisy wrote:

    women having short hair are being ungodly (because God intends for all women to have long hair, to distinguish them from men, because all men have short hair),

    Again, the only reason Long Wavy Hair became Godly was Got Hard’s sexual fetish.

  159. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Again, the only reason Long Wavy Hair became Godly was Got Hard’s sexual fetish.

    That part that got my attention was complementarians now extending the submission thing not just to church and marriage, but to the workplace too.

    Outside of that Ephesians 5 thing that talks about people being submissive to each other (in the church) there is nothing in the New Testament (not even the OT) about God insisting that ALL women (single and married) having to submit to ALL men every where, even outside marriage/ church.

    These complementarian guys are way, way off the rails with their sexism, that they even want to extend it past married ladies / marriage / no lady preachers.

  160. Lea wrote:

    OT, but I just read this article by a pastors wife about how you should text them encouragement, but never expect a return text, and don’t expect to be their best friend, because how would someone else at church feel if they knew the pastors wife had a best friend that wasn’t you? Honestly? Doesn’t that kind of BFF jealous go away in high school? Her answers in the comments are very touchy too.

    Oh. My. That’s Zsuzsanna Anderson, the wife of Steven Anderson, an independent fundamental Baptist over in Tempe who says some of the meanest, hurtful things you can imagine. Their church is on the other side of the freeway from my office (on the days when I work in the office). I’m trying to be nice about this, but those two are fanatics and not in a good way.

  161. shauna wrote:

    This is off topic but I have a quick question. If a perpetrator takes a guilty plea can he or his family outside of that plea outside of the court say it’s not true? wouldn’t they be violating the plea agreement? If this is done what would be the remedy?

    Shauna, if this is about Billy’s attacker, I’d follow up with the DA’s office.

  162. Daisy wrote:

    In some kind of Christian conference in Australia (I think) a complementarian speaker said (if I’m understanding right) that women having short hair are being ungodly (because God intends for all women to have long hair, to distinguish them from men, because all men have short hair),
    AND AND AND
    Women should be submissive to all men in the workplace.
    When cutting your hair can be an ungodly act (by Ann Lim, May 29, 2017)
    https://www.eternitynews.com.au/culture/when-cutting-your-hair-can-be-an-ungodly-act/
    Snippets:

    …She believed it might be more in line with God’s good design to have long hair because it was a visible sign of the difference between men and women in which God delighted.
    ….However, the speakers offered a radical version of complementarianism extending it to the workplace, which surprised many in the audience. This is sometimes called patriarchy.
    One speaker even said that if a woman became a CEO she should perform her role in a way that was helpful to men.

    Good luck with that, complementarians.

    I had waist-length hair for years. My late father positively hated it because he thought professional women should have short hair. He kinda sorta came around because I kept it partially braided. Eventually I cut my hair, about 9 months before he died. He was so happy I did it. However, I didn’t do it for him, I did it for me, because I had this rash/fungus on the back of my neck and a steroid was not dealing with it. (There’s nothing like your doctor telling you to only use the steroid for x number of days and then give it a rest, to save my liver.) Removing all that hair and exposing the back of my neck to the sun absolutely killed the rash, though.

  163. Off-topic reminder.

    Please continue to pray for CHRISTIANE who is recovering from eye surgery.

  164. Thank you, Velour and JYJames. I’m getting better. Eye drops galore and have to wear an ‘eye shield’ to sleep in. No pain, thank God. It takes time. All is good. Love and hugs!

  165. Christiane wrote:

    Thank you, Velour and JYJames. I’m getting better. Eye drops galore and have to wear an ‘eye shield’ to sleep in. No pain, thank God. It takes time. All is good. Love and hugs!

    Thanks CHRISTIANE for giving us your medical update about your eye.

    We will continue to pray for your healing.

    Love and hugs,
    Velour in California

  166. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes wrote:

    Oh. My. That’s Zsuzsanna Anderson, the wife of Steven Anderson, an independent fundamental Baptist over in Tempe who says some of the meanest, hurtful things you can imagine.

    Trying to become the next Fred Phelps?

  167. Christiane wrote:

    It takes time.

    Yes it does. Hang in there.

    I had first one then the other cataract removed with implants put in, and both times it took time. It took so much time for the first one that I started thinking that I had made a mistake having the procedure even done in the first place.

    About anesthesia, my first eye surgery was done with a retro-bulbar regional block, which is great for the patient if all goes well but there is some danger with the anesthesia procedure itself. Years later when I finally let them do the second one they used topical anesthesia with the option of IV supplementation of either (a) sedation or else (b) pain relief or (c) both-patient’s choice. With the first kind of anesthesia I could not ‘feel’ anything but with the second I could ‘feel’ a tad differently with discomfort but not really bad pain. It was a rather disconcerting experience actually. IMO they don’t have it solved yet regarding anesthesia for eye procedures.

    So. anyhow, glad you got through it okay and we will not forget that you must endure the tedium of waiting for vision to really clear in that eye, and we will be thinking about you and praying for you.

    Is the other eye okay or is this just round one in your vision issues?

  168. Mae wrote:

    Wonderful!
    Did he shake the dirt off his sandals at you all?

    Not exactly, but he did say he was leaving because we didn’t follow his leadership! He painted himself to be the martyr, however, his deception and stealthy attempt to “reform” the church didn’t seem to bother him in the slightest! Churches need to be vigilant and bold…this is a pretty slippery bunch!

  169. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes wrote:

    Oh. My. That’s Zsuzsanna Anderson, the wife of Steven Anderson, an independent fundamental Baptist over in Tempe who says some of the meanest, hurtful things you can imagine.

    Really!! I knew nothing about her, but she sounded very ‘mememe’. And they have a boatload of kids and she’s talking about when she gets pregnant again.

    But can you imagine telling someone to text you but don’t expect a response because you’re just too busy??

  170. What still bothers me the most about these takeovers, is the cunning, the deception, the dishonesty. The purposeful plotting of coming into an established church for the sole purpose of, reforming it,or the new code word,” revitalizing” it.

    It would legitimate for them to start their own association of churches, but to plot to takeover SBC is thievery, pure and simple. No one gave them the authority to plot these takeovers but they themselves….how pompous, prideful.

    I am not SBC, but support every SBC member who is fighting to keep, “who so ever will may come.” My prayer is that even a blog such as this, will stir a fire up in the, UNrevitalized.

  171. @ Muslin, fka Dee Holmes:

    Hair is a very personal decision. People have different hair and they should fix it the way that makes them happy and looks best on them. I don’t think God cares one way or the other.

  172. Mae wrote:

    It would legitimate for them to start their own association of churches, but to plot to takeover SBC is thievery, pure and simple. No one gave them the authority to plot these takeovers but they themselves….how pompous, prideful.

    They won’t do this because it requires a lot of work and a lot of money. They seem to think (and rightly so,) that the SBC is “easy pickin’s.” Why start a new church work when you can have the people who did all the hard work and sacrifice give you the key?

    These guys are reckless, destructive and divisive. Their godless quest for a “pure church” will only leave their pews and coffers empty.

    I am in the SBC and I am utterly appalled by this “movement.” My prayer is that God will continue raise up people in our denomination to stand against it and expose it for what it truly is: a power grab. Once they bleed the largest protestant denomination dry, my question is, “Who’s next?”

  173. @ Ken F (aka Tweed):

    @ Ken F (aka Tweed):

    “TGC can almost always be counted on to provide timely and excellent backup material to illustrate the topics discussed here.”
    ++++++++++++++++

    would you say this is happenstance, simply because they flood the marketplace of ideas with material?

    or would you say it seems to be by design – watching the pulse of trends and of their opponents and responding accordingly to shape (or manipulate) thinking?

    (afterall, they do hire “content strategists” and “communications specialists” — are these full time jobs? what do such people do all day?)

  174. Root 66 wrote:

    They won’t do this because it requires a lot of work and a lot of money. They seem to think (and rightly so,) that the SBC is “easy pickin’s.” Why start a new church work when you can have the people who did all the hard work and sacrifice give you the key?

    Same logic as a Raid-and-Pillage economy.
    Why work to produce things when you can just raid your neighbors, kill them off, and take all their stuff for free?

    “Push comes to shove, you have the food, I have my gun. One pull of a trigger and I have the gun and the food.”

  175. If some SBC church has not dropped out of SBC and affiliated with a group of ‘moderate’ formerly SBC churches, then it is reasonable to ask why-why did they stay?

    IMO part of the answer may be that there is a contingent of conservatives already in place in such a church, and these conservatives may be the core of the congregation which both calls a neo-cal pastor and who then agrees with him in the direction in which he is trying to take the church, and who themselves see the opportunity to swing the church focus in a more conservative approach.

    And this more conservative approach just happens to be calvinism in the baptist tradition because calvinism has always been a part, either large or small, of the baptist tradition. So when calvinism is preached they have the opportunity to climb on board seeing it as biblical, conservative and historical for baptists.

  176. elastigirl wrote:

    (afterall, they do hire “content strategists” and “communications specialists” — are these full time jobs? what do such people do all day?)

    Ever heard of “Ministry of Propaganda”?

  177. Root 66 wrote:

    Not exactly, but he did say he was leaving because we didn’t follow his leadership! He painted himself to be the martyr

    i.e. “Poor Poor Persecuted Me, The REAL Victim! Pity Me! Pity Me! Pity Me!”

    Isn’t that the most characteristic sign of a sociopath: to turn the tables, shift the blame, and play the Poor Innocent Victim when caught?

  178. Darlene wrote:

    I Fear a Cage wrote:

    This guy reminds me of my former pastor in an article he wrote bragging about his takeover of my former church. The former interim pastor brought him in and we never had s chance to interview him or try out other preachers. It was forced on us.

    IFAC:. Do you have a link to the site where your former pastor brags about his take over of your church? Is he a New Calvinist?

    He is not a Calvinist. He’s viciously anti Calvinist in fact. He’s an independent fundamental baptist. I am uncomfortable sharing the link directly because I have family that still go there and if it ever gets out that I am talking here about the church my family will be treated very badly and they don’t deserve that.

  179. Mae wrote:

    What still bothers me the most about these takeovers, is the cunning, the deception, the dishonesty. The purposeful plotting of coming into an established church for the sole purpose of, reforming it,or the new code word,” revitalizing” it.
    It would legitimate for them to start their own association of churches, but to plot to takeover SBC is thievery, pure and simple. No one gave them the authority to plot these takeovers but they themselves….how pompous, prideful.
    UNrevitalized.

    The cunning, deception, and dishonesty were part of the stealth takeover at our church as well. The search team, elders, everyone was misled and outright lied to. New pastor was asked explicitly about leadership structure, etc. Said he accepted all as it was and then within months, began laying the groundwork for changing it so that it became a pastor centered leadership system. When enough pieces were in place, he made his move. If he had wanted to lead a church that way, fine. Be upfront about it and find a congregation who wants that. Our new pastor too wrote off the people who left as “less than” Christians, or maybe not really Christians at all. So they then flatter themselves as having purified the church when actually they’ve made it over in their own image.

    I wonder why it doesn’t occur to these people to wonder why deception is needed if they are bringing about a new reformation that God is behind. OTOH, we know who the father of lies is.

  180. Todd Wilhelm wrote:

    “Unlimited power in the hands of limited people always leads to cruelty.”
    ― Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago

    Well recommended but a very a tough book to get through.

  181. Lea wrote:

    But can you imagine telling someone to text you but don’t expect a response because you’re just too busy??

    Narcissism to the Nth power.

  182. okrapod wrote:

    IMO part of the answer may be that there is a contingent of conservatives already in place in such a church, and these conservatives may be the core of the congregation which both calls a neo-cal pastor and who then agrees with him in the direction in which he is trying to take the church, and who themselves see the opportunity to swing the church focus in a more conservative approach.
    And this more conservative approach just happens to be calvinism in the baptist tradition because calvinism has always been a part, either large or small, of the baptist tradition. So when calvinism is preached they have the opportunity to climb on board seeing it as biblical, conservative and historical for baptists.

    This is interesting, because although I see myself as conservative, I’m clearly NOT a Calvinist! Granted, there have been Calvinists throughout the history of the SBC, but they haven’t been as dogmatic as this Neo-Cal bunch. In order to trick pastor search committees, they even claim that they hold to “historic baptist traditions” (aka-Calvinism.)

    But really, I don’t think the issue is so much Calvinism as much as it is seizing control and the tactics used to bring this “reform” into churches. If the majority of Southern Baptists would just look around and see the destruction that’s happening, this movement would end tomorrow, I guarantee it!

  183. @ Abi Miah:

    It is quite a twist of the hand, to turn the perpetrated upon, into the villain! Those who dare oppose are branded as rebellious, carnal Christians, etc.All the while the usurper brand themselves as, the purifiers, the protectors of the true gospel of grace, etc.

    It gives me a better feel for the 500 year old Reformation. Don’t agree with the opposition, burn/ban their writings, excile them, call them heretics, etc….All the while the purging group is concentrating power for themselves.

  184. When our church went from being, in the words of somebody else, ‘a nice little liberal Episcopal church’ (which happened to have a terminal case of the dwindles) to an anglo-catholic Episcopal church there were decisions made which were not necessarily popular and the story is that certain persons had more sway than others, but there are no tales going around about any deception. Just a definitive move in a different direction by a segment of people. None the less there were/are some who were/are not happy about it. Regardless of that, the church has thrived.

    I am thinking that deception is really wrong, but with or without deception there are going to be those who do not like the new direction of a church, regardless of what that direction is and regardless of how the change in course is done, and possibly regardless of how well or not the new direction works out.

    I don’t know any remedy for that. Stagnation is not going to please everybody either. Waiting for the oldies but goodies to die off is not wise; some of us just seem to hang on way beyond our four score and ten. Creating a ruckus and splitting the church, which has certainly been done lots, is a bad idea. Maybe starting a new church down the road is a good idea, but that seems to be a waste of otherwise good brick and mortar (yes, I said that) depending on the spiritual condition of the church before the onset of changes, of course.

    In short: it is not just the calvinists and not just the Baptists, and I personally do not (caution: thin ice) discount in toto each and every word out of each and every calvinist’s mouth merely because of the current SBC issues. even though anglo-catholic is at the opposite end of the anglican continuum from the anglican calvinists.

  185. Isn’t that the most characteristic sign of a sociopath: to turn the tables, shift the blame, and play the Poor Innocent Victim when caught?

    YES!!!!

    At the company from which I recently retired, we had two bosses (one to whom I reported directly plus her superior who ran the department), both of whom were micromanaging control freaks. For the longest time Boss #1 (the lesser boss) would sketch out the layouts for the graphic designers and force them to follow her layouts to the letter. If they balked and did their own designs, she would make them re-do the designs until they conformed to hers. NB: She had no design training, whereas all the designers had gone to art school and spent years as professional designers.

    Well, the poor designers felt so defeated that they just gave in and did everything *exactly* her way — to avoid having to re-do and re-do, over and over. Some of these designers had come from well-known ad agencies, but here they were allowed zero creativity. They were just production hacks executing the Boss’s designs.

    This boss was equally micro-manage-y with us copywriters (especially me), just in different ways. It invariably meant extra work and longer hours… and nothing was ever good enough. I could provide a lot more detail, but…some other time.

    Well, on one occasion, when Boss #1 had been wearing down both me and the designers with her control-freaky control, I emailed both her and Boss #2 (department head) and said, “I am feeling micro-managed.” That’s it. No direct accusation. No abrasive language. Just an expression of how I was feeling. It was a cry from the heart…a *plea.* I was worn down and couldn’t take much more.

    Big Boss #2 shot back that my statement (“I am feeling micro-managed”) was “vicious.” That was his term: “vicious.”

    I reeled. I didn’t know what to think. So *he* was the victim??? Boss 1 and Boss 2 were *victims*???

    That’s when I first started to realize that you can never make a reasonable case to narcissistic control freaks. *They* are always in the right, and they are the victims.

    I cannot even think of this stuff without my stomach churning. Yes, it was in a secular context, but it bears so many resemblances to the stuff y’all discuss here! And oh yes, Boss #1 was a devout Southern Baptist, and I don’t think it ever remotely crossed her mind that she was treating her subordinates like pond scum. I could be wrong; I know I’m being uncharitable…but she always gave the distinct impression that she thought she was completely in the right. Both Boss 1 and Boss 2 practiced the Kiss Up/Kick Down style of management: They *worshiped* upper management; they constantly kissed the Big Honchos’ butts; but they behaved condescendingly and even abusively to anyone beneath them on the corporate totem pole. How that qualifies as “Christian” is beyond me, but apparently, for some folks, “Once Saved Always Saved” means never having to say you’re sorry.

    (Hah, I sure hope no one I know in Real Life reads this blog! But why should I be a-skeered? I’m free of that place, and there is nothing more they can do to me. 😀 I still have nightmares about my old bosses, though. Seriously. It’s like a mild form of PTSD, I think.)

  186. okrapod wrote:

    certain persons had more sway than others

    Certain persons always have more sway than others. In my parish, it’s the Aging-Boomer-Kumbaya crowd. They squawk the loudest. :p Fortunately, when they were at their loudest and meanest, the bishop issued new directives that were more in line with what the traditionally minded folks wanted, so the squawkers had to put up and shut up. They still raise a ruckus, though, and they still get their way in some matters. But we have a wonderful priest now who walks a middle way between the Trads and the Kumbayas, so we have peace.

  187. Todd Wilhelm wrote:

    “Unlimited power in the hands of limited people always leads to cruelty.”
    ― Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago

    I still haven’t finished The Gulag Archipelago after several years. It was such a tragic time in history.

  188. __

    “Cela nécessite parfois de comprendre?”

    hmmm…

    Dear Velour,

    This sometimes requires understanding, dealing with precarious truths, which people disturb the mind, but reassure the soul. One of the ministers of Christ who proposes to deceive his flock is one of these cases.

    Les champs sont blancs avec la moisson, priez le Seigneur de la moisson pour envoyer de véritables ouvriers dans les champs, oui?(1)

    ATB

    Sopy
    __
    Notes:
    (1) Eng. tr. The fields are white with the harvest, so pray the Lord of the harvest to send ‘true’ laborers into the fields, yes?

    🙂

  189. Mae wrote:

    It gives me a better feel for the 500 year old Reformation. Don’t agree with the opposition, burn/ban their writings, excile them, call them heretics, etc….All the while the purging group is concentrating power for themselves.

    Sounds like you’re describing Henry VIII’s takeover of the monasteries and charity hospitals, so he and his buddies could seize their valuable lands….

    Or the way Luther savaged all his opponents, smeared the Jews, and first encouraged, then betrayed the Peasants’ Revolt….

    Or the way Calvin ran Geneva, mercilessly persecuting his opponents….

    Or the way Elizabeth and Cecil *forced* Protestantism down the throats of the English countryfolk, especially in places like Yorkshire, where there was vigorous Catholic resistance to the new, harsher religion. According to historian Christopher Haigh, the Protestants would come in and seize the parish statues and ban the beloved saint’s-day festivals. Then, as soon as Elizabeth’s Enforcers left, the parish priest would haul the statues back into the church, and the people would resume their “Merrie Olde England” festivals. Eventually, though, the priests died and were replaced by Protestant preachers, who relentlessly brainwashed the people, so that nearly everyone was safely Protestant by the second or third generation. Sound familiar? 😉 It’s all chronicled in Haigh’s masterful and fascinating work, *English Reformations*: https://www.amazon.com/English-Reformations-Religion-Politics-Society/dp/0198221622/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1496855939&sr=8-1&keywords=christopher+haigh%2C+english+reformations

    Bottom line: There are two sides to every story. More than two, in fact. It’s all very messy and complicated, and there are plenty of faults on all sides. After 500 years of turmoil — with countless conflicts and thousands of warring denominations — maybe we should focus on healing the divisions, not exacerbating them. At the very least, we can all work at understanding and loving each other. (Addressing this primarily to myself, seriously. I am the worst offender in this regard.)

  190. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    okrapod wrote:

    certain persons had more sway than others

    Certain persons always have more sway than others. In my parish, it’s the Aging-Boomer-Kumbaya crowd. They squawk the loudest. :p Fortunately, when they were at their loudest and meanest, the bishop issued new directives that were more in line with what the traditionally minded folks wanted, so the squawkers had to put up and shut up. They still raise a ruckus, though, and they still get their way in some matters. But we have a wonderful priest now who walks a middle way between the Trads and the Kumbayas, so we have peace.

    We have ‘personalities’ in our parish, but not ‘factions’ thank God …. I’m not seeing the trouble you are seeing in your parish here. I think we are more conscious of being a ‘family’ of ‘families’ than a divided congregation into political factions. Yes, I credit the example of our priest as someone who harbors the peace of Christ within and brings it among us in serving the needs of the parish. The strange thing is, where ever I go in my life to different parishes, I still have a sense of ‘belonging’ to the congregations because of the ‘source’ of unity and that is something that has been a life-long experience.

  191. Deb wrote:

    Andy Davis and his cohorts are the ones who boasted about this church takeover via the internet.

    My wife and I gave consideration to joining FBC Durham back in 2005(-ish, I cannot remember exactly when). We went a few Sundays and had some friends there at the time, but quickly figured out that as “excellent” as the doctrine may be*, it was an overall cold, lifeless, unwelcoming place. Davis is not friendly and his wife would not speak to us on the elevator, when it was just us and her and we were wearing our visitor’s name tags, or something similar. Perhaps if we were in a higher socio-economic bracket at the time we would have received a warmer reception, but who knows.

    *According to their own publicity and self-referencing

  192. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    Bottom line: There are two sides to every story. More than two, in fact. It’s all very messy and complicated, and there are plenty of faults on all sides. After 500 years of turmoil — with countless conflicts and thousands of warring denominations — maybe we should focus on healing the divisions, not exacerbating them. At the very least, we can all work at understanding and loving each other. (Addressing this primarily to myself, seriously. I am the worst offender in this regard.)

    Is possible to seek ‘understanding’ and to appreciate and respect the beliefs of others who are of good will, especially within the larger Christian family.
    People’s beliefs that are meaningful to them ought to be respected as something coming from their own journey in the faith, and IF we are willing to listen, we can learn from them how they also have encountered Christ along the way. It’s not ‘division’ so much as I think we ’emphasize’ different aspects of the faith. The serious divisions should be acknowledged and respected yes, but should not keep us from working together towards shared goals, especially in community projects that bring good for people in need.

    It’s a ‘respect’ thing. It’s a ‘listening’ thing. And we too can benefit from the viewpoints of others of good will. I believe in this, yes.

  193. To the Deebs et al,

    Thank you for this post, which, at least in my own life, is timely. Yesterday I attended EEO/ADA/Diversity training for HR Managers and was introduced to “The Danger of a Single Story” via a TED Talk by Chimamanda Adichie. Without going into too much detail, the 9Marks “Wormwood” piece, as well as Davis’ own blog and the TGC/Southern Seminary account are examples of “single stories” which are attempting to influence, if not outright co-opt, the overall and quite complex narrative of what happened at FBC Durham. Once again, the Deebs have been able to get just a few of the other narratives out there, and the truth is all the richer for it.

    For those who are interested in such things, here is the link to Adichie’s TED Talk. She delivered it at Oxford in 2007 and it lasts about 7 or so minutes.
    https://youtu.be/D9Ihs241zeg

  194. Mae wrote:

    @ Catholic Gate-Crasher:
    Seems a rather one sided presentation. I am a Christian first, a protestant second and am content with both.

    Not one-sided at all. I would respectfully suggest that it’s the dominant, popular “Rome All Bad / Reformers All Good” narrative that is extremely one-sided. Buttressed by a-historical propaganda like Foxe’s Booke of Martyrs, etc.

    In American this one-sided narrative has led to a lot of pretty nasty persecution, from the burning of the Ursuline convent in Charleston, Mass., to “Irish Need Not Apply,” to the aftermath of the Maria Monk craze.

    Sometimes it is necessary to set the record straight by presenting the *other* side. That’s what I was trying to do: present the other side simply to complement the side *you* presented. Just trying to round out the historical record a little teeny bit, based on other people’s scholarship. (I am no scholar myself, although I’m married to one.) After all, if the truth will set you free, then isn’t it better to have a fuller, more complete, more accurate account of the historical record?

    As I said, it’s all messy and complicated, and all sides were at fault. (Wondering how that statement is even remotely one-sided, but anyway….)

    Until Haigh’s groundbreaking book came out, a lot of people heard *only* the one side
    — that whole Glorious Reformation Setting a Grateful People Free from Thralldom to Evil Rome mythos. Now a number of eminent peer-reviewed scholars (Haigh, Eamonn Duffy, among others) are setting the record straight. *The Stripping of the Altars* is another eye-opening text on this subject.

    I guess I can’t see how it’s wrong to give the other side of the story, especially if said other side is buttressed by solid historical scholarship. Haigh’s book has become definitive and is widely assigned in college classes on the English Reformation. Shouldn’t it — and similar well-researched texts — receive as much of a fair hearing as the dominant Protestant narrative receives? How is it “one-sided” to present the other side? I have never said that my “side” is the only legitimate side. In fact, I have explicitly said just the opposite. 🙂

    Peace, sister.

  195. Christiane wrote:

    People’s beliefs that are meaningful to them ought to be respected as something coming from their own journey in the faith, and IF we are willing to listen, we can learn from them how they also have encountered Christ along the way.

    That is one side of the issue. Sometimes that is a good idea.

    The other side of the issue is that sometimes people’s beliefs are what they conjure up for themselves and/or cling to in order to achieve whatever but which may well have nothing to do with any faith journey. When that is the case then we should not respect their beliefs. Just because something is a belief does not make it deserving of respect.

    For example: the curse of Ham/Canaan in fueling racist beliefs. There are a plethora of such things, and personally I have no respect for such and will not whitewash it or pretend just for the sake of peace. It is one thing to value peace, but Jesus also said He did not come to bring peace but rather a sword, and a man’s enemies would be those of his own household. Difficult saying but certainly observably correct; this happens.

    So yes, I think we should all try to co-operate for the greater good of society as a whole when we can, but no, I do not think that we should respect any and all beliefs in order to do so. Some beliefs are lies, pitfalls and snares of the adversary.

  196. Burwell wrote:

    Davis is not friendly and his wife would not speak to us on the elevator

    Ridiculous! Right after I joined the church I got a kick out of the pastor purposefully saying my name when he said hello in the hallway. (he does the same now, but I no longer think it’s an effort) Meanwhile, I don’t know what his wife looks like because nobody has made a big deal out of it. That’s just fine to me! One thing I like about this church is that people are pretty friendly but not in an annoying, love bombing way.

    And I completely agree with your second comment about getting both sides to a story. I dislike documentaries (for instance) where the creator imposes something on top of the story that makes it feel like you are missing critical true things because that don’t support that story. Definitely how Davis’s piece reads. Some guy on twitter was trying to tell Dee (I think) that she was lying about him because she didn’t take his statement that he didn’t his self serving statement about this not being all about women deacons at face value, when really it’s quite obvious that was the problem for him.

  197. @ Catholic Gate-Crasher:
    My concern is with the present day Calvanistas and their takeovers….not in what side of the Reformation was warranted. That has been argued, debated, scrutinized for five hundred years.

    I should have been more direct and stated, I understand somewhat how Jacob Arimius felt five hundred years ago when he was dismissed as a heretic by the powers of the day.

  198. Christiane wrote:

    Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    Bottom line: There are two sides to every story. More than two, in fact. It’s all very messy and complicated, and there are plenty of faults on all sides. After 500 years of turmoil — with countless conflicts and thousands of warring denominations — maybe we should focus on healing the divisions, not exacerbating them. At the very least, we can all work at understanding and loving each other. (Addressing this primarily to myself, seriously. I am the worst offender in this regard.)

    Is possible to seek ‘understanding’ and to appreciate and respect the beliefs of others who are of good will, especially within the larger Christian family.
    People’s beliefs that are meaningful to them ought to be respected as something coming from their own journey in the faith, and IF we are willing to listen, we can learn from them how they also have encountered Christ along the way. It’s not ‘division’ so much as I think we ’emphasize’ different aspects of the faith. The serious divisions should be acknowledged and respected yes, but should not keep us from working together towards shared goals, especially in community projects that bring good for people in need.

    It’s a ‘respect’ thing. It’s a ‘listening’ thing. And we too can benefit from the viewpoints of others of good will. I believe in this, yes.

    Um, sorry, but I am failing to see how this has anything to do with what I wrote. I was not attacking Mae’s beliefs. I was simply responding to her representation of the Reformation as 100% a glorious liberation of the people from the shackles of the Papist “purgers.” This, of course, is itself a highly loaded statement, which, if anything, attacks other people’s beliefs. 😀 But I did not approach it that way. I approached it as an historical question. I simply presented recent historical scholarship (link to Haigh’s book) suggesting that the actual historical record is much messier and more complicated than the dominant, popular narrative would have us believe.

    Fuller historical research and broader historical knowledge do not impede ecumenical dialogue. They facilitate it. How can we possibly have mutual understanding if we are working off of a false, simplistic, one-sided narrative?

    In short, I think you have completely misread my post. 😀 In essence I was saying exactly what Burwell is saying: Beware of the “One Story” narrative. Historians and historiographers know there is never any such thing as “One Story.”

  199. Mae wrote:

    @ Catholic Gate-Crasher:
    My concern is with the present day Calvanistas and their takeovers….not in what side of the Reformation was warranted. That has been argued, debated, scrutinized for five hundred years.

    I should have been more direct and stated, I understand somewhat how Jacob Arimius felt five hundred years ago when he was dismissed as a heretic by the powers of the day.

    Understood! Sorry for misunderstanding and getting my Irish up!

  200. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    I was not attacking Mae’s beliefs. I was simply responding to her representation of the Reformation as 100% a glorious liberation of the people from the shackles of the Papist “purgers.” This, of course, is itself a highly loaded statement, which, if anything, attacks other people’s beliefs

    To me, more “Ees Party Line!” than “highly loaded statement”.
    You don’t know how many times I heard that Party Line when in-country.

    Historians and historiographers know there is never any such thing as “One Story.”

    That’s where “historians and historiographers” differ from True Believers. Because to a True Believer, there Can Be Only One Story — THEIRS. All other stories are Heresy and Must Be Purged.

  201. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    And oh yes, Boss #1 was a devout Southern Baptist, and I don’t think it ever remotely crossed her mind that she was treating her subordinates like pond scum.

    “Nothing’s worse than a monster who thinks he’s Right with God.”
    — Captain Mal “Tightpants” Reynolds, Free Trader Serenity

    (Yes there is, Captain. A monster who KNOWS he’s Right with God.)

  202. Mae wrote:

    What still bothers me the most about these takeovers, is the cunning, the deception, the dishonesty. The purposeful plotting of coming into an established church for the sole purpose of, reforming it,or the new code word,” revitalizing” it.

    A Righteous enough Cause justifies any means whatsoever to bring it about.
    Remember those 200 years of Righteous Cause Revolutions, from 1789 to 1989, from Paris to Phnom Penh.

    It would legitimate for them to start their own association of churches, but to plot to takeover SBC is thievery, pure and simple. No one gave them the authority to plot these takeovers but they themselves….how pompous, prideful.

    Raid-and-Pillage economy and/or Predator mentality.
    Much easier to raid, take, and use than to actually build.

  203. I Fear a Cage wrote:

    He is not a Calvinist. He’s viciously anti Calvinist in fact. He’s an independent fundamental baptist.

    IFBs can be every bit as X-Treme and Nasty as New Calvinists.

    Before the rise of the YRRs, IFBs were the type example of Nasty Fundamentalist.

  204. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    I Fear a Cage wrote:
    He is not a Calvinist. He’s viciously anti Calvinist in fact. He’s an independent fundamental baptist.
    IFBs can be every bit as X-Treme and Nasty as New Calvinists.
    Before the rise of the YRRs, IFBs were the type example of Nasty Fundamentalist.

    For sure.

  205. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    Bottom line: There are two sides to every story. More than two, in fact. It’s all very messy and complicated, and there are plenty of faults on all sides. After 500 years of turmoil — with countless conflicts and thousands of warring denominations — maybe we should focus on healing the divisions, not exacerbating them. At the very least, we can all work at understanding and loving each other. (Addressing this primarily to myself, seriously. I am the worst offender in this regard.)

    I completely agree with you CGC! While I am an Orthodox Christian, I consider myself a believer in and disciple of Jesus Christ first. I am tired of the nitpicking divisions in which Christians point the finger and issue diatribes of “unsaved,” or “unregenerate,” or “damnation,” or any other number of judgments because all those others don’t follow their doctrines line-by-line, precept-by-precept. Those who want to keep the Reformation alive, or any of the other supposed Righteous Holy Wars do no favors for the non-Christian world, which looks on with no respect or interest toward all of our bickering. Such is a lousy witness of the love of our Lord Jesus.

    Stepping down from soapbox now.

  206. Lea wrote:

    Hair is a very personal decision.

    Yes. Except when it’s not a decision at all (chemo, alopecia, balding, thinning). God might know how many hairs are on our heads, but I hope that’s about concern for our well-being and safety–and not about cut and color.

  207. Friend wrote:

    selling bathing suits

    I missed that one! “Cute and Covered” I read the one about her trying to lose baby weight for the nth time, before she had her next baby.

    And yes, what kind of hair we have or don’t have is not a choice. Thin, thick, chemo, etc. We work with what we’ve got. And some make beautiful decisions to give and help others even with something so simple as hair. The main point is God loves us regardless.

  208. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    “Nothing’s worse than a monster who thinks he’s Right with God.”
    — Captain Mal “Tightpants” Reynolds, Free Trader Serenity
    (Yes there is, Captain. A monster who KNOWS he’s Right with God.)

    Or as C.S. Lewis wrote,

    “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”

  209. Lea wrote:

    And yes, what kind of hair we have or don’t have is not a choice. Thin, thick, chemo, etc. We work with what we’ve got.

    In my younger days (before my hair went Targeryn silver), I always wanted to wear my hair moderately-long, as was the style of the time. Unfortunately, my hair has always been too wavy to wear straight and too straight to wear wavy. Whenever I grew it out, it always went straight on one side and wavy on the other like a cartoon character, with turned-up ends all over the place.

  210. Josh wrote:

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:
    “Nothing’s worse than a monster who thinks he’s Right with God.”
    — Captain Mal “Tightpants” Reynolds, Free Trader Serenity
    (Yes there is, Captain. A monster who KNOWS he’s Right with God.)

    Or as C.S. Lewis wrote,
    “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”

    What I’ve come to call “The Corruption of Righteousness”.

    (Of which we have a LOT in California officialdom. I’ll take my East Coast buds’ problems dealing with the Corruption of Money any day rather than the Corruption of Righteousness endemic here on the West Coast.)

  211. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Whenever I grew it out, it always went straight on one side and wavy on the other like a cartoon character

    You really need to post a picture of that 🙂

    I got a perm once, in 4th grade. My hair is very thick. It was not a good look.

  212. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    Mae wrote:

    @ Catholic Gate-Crasher:
    Seems a rather one sided presentation. I am a Christian first, a protestant second and am content with both.

    Not one-sided at all. I would respectfully suggest that it’s the dominant, popular “Rome All Bad / Reformers All Good” narrative that is extremely one-sided. Buttressed by a-historical propaganda like Foxe’s Booke of Martyrs, etc.

    Sometimes it is necessary to set the record straight by presenting the *other* side. That’s what I was trying to do: present the other side simply to complement the side *you* presented. Just trying to round out the historical record a little teeny bit, based on other people’s scholarship.

    Until Haigh’s groundbreaking book came out, a lot of people heard *only* the one side.

    Here’s my opinion for whatever it’s worth. Until we who bear the name of Christ recognize that each of our respective faith traditions have harmed and mistreated others in the name of our God, healing in the wider body of Christ will not take place. I have heard the Protestant, Catholic, & Orthodox perspectives with regard to who persecuted and mistreated whom. I have heard about the tearing down of the altars and iconoclasm of the English Reformation & about the various holy wars done on all sides in the name of Jesus. But such actions do not reflect the love and compassion of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is time to put down our swords And plowshares and endeavor to love and practice kindness toward one another. Then and only then will the world witness the love of Jesus at work among us.

  213. @ I Fear a Cage:
    I experienced “nastiness” in several IFB groups, and I agree they are not 5 pt calvanist, and they can be nasty to 5 pt calvanists!… (I have posted before, I would like to put some of the IFBs I know from my past in the same room as some the current Calvanistas, and watch the fireworks!)
    being nasty is not unique to the Calvanistas…
    While I am sure there are many causes of being “nasty”, being convinced that you have the “true way” and that all the other groups are either just “wrong”, or even worse, “compromised” like Ken Ham is quick to say, can lead one to be “nasty”

  214. Darlene wrote:

    I have heard the Protestant, Catholic, & Orthodox perspectives with regard to who persecuted and mistreated whom.

    The answer is pretty much ‘everybody’. So, yeah. I don’t think there is much point in discussing it. Lot of bad popes, Constantine apparently did away with his son and wife, lot of bad calvin/luther stuff, Anabaptists went crazy there for a time in germany, etc. (You would probably know better about the orthodox side of things).

  215. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    (Of which we have a LOT in California officialdom. I’ll take my East Coast buds’ problems dealing with the Corruption of Money any day rather than the Corruption of Righteousness endemic here on the West Coast.)

    No thanks.

    It’s not that bad in California.

    Signed,

    Velour, Native Californian

  216. Jeffrey J . Chalmers wrote:

    While I am sure there are many causes of being “nasty”, being convinced that you have the “true way” and that all the other groups are either just “wrong”, or even worse, “compromised” like Ken Ham is quick to say, can lead one to be “nasty”

    While he’s not ‘nasty’ in the usual sense of that particular descriptor, Stephen Hawking (on the other extreme from Ham’s dogma) is just as convinced that his ‘rightness’ is the only ‘truth’ too.

  217. Catholic Gate-Crasher wrote:

    Fuller historical research and broader historical knowledge do not impede ecumenical dialogue. They facilitate it. How can we possibly have mutual understanding if we are working off of a false, simplistic, one-sided narrative?

    Quite true. Only when we are willing to take off our rose-colored glasses as it pertains to our preferred side of the story, and actually grapple with the messy side of Christian history which reveals that no side is blameless, will we then be able to have fruitful dialogue with each other.

  218. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Mae wrote:

    What still bothers me the most about these takeovers, is the cunning, the deception, the dishonesty. The purposeful plotting of coming into an established church for the sole purpose of, reforming it,or the new code word,” revitalizing” it.

    A Righteous enough Cause justifies any means whatsoever to bring it about.
    Remember those 200 years of Righteous Cause Revolutions, from 1789 to 1989, from Paris to Phnom Penh.

    It would legitimate for them to start their own association of churches, but to plot to takeover SBC is thievery, pure and simple. No one gave them the authority to plot these takeovers but they themselves….how pompous, prideful.

    Raid-and-Pillage economy and/or Predator mentality.
    Much easier to raid, take, and use than to actually build.

    I don’t think the Neo-Calvinists beli

  219. Darlene wrote:

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Mae wrote:

    What still bothers me the most about these takeovers, is the cunning, the deception, the dishonesty. The purposeful plotting of coming into an established church for the sole purpose of, reforming it,or the new code word,” revitalizing” it.

    A Righteous enough Cause justifies any means whatsoever to bring it about.
    Remember those 200 years of Righteous Cause Revolutions, from 1789 to 1989, from Paris to Phnom Penh.

    It would legitimate for them to start their own association of churches, but to plot to takeover SBC is thievery, pure and simple. No one gave them the authority to plot these takeovers but they themselves….how pompous, prideful.

    Raid-and-Pillage economy and/or Predator mentality.
    Much easier to raid, take, and use than to actually build.

    I don’t think the Neo-Calvinists beli

    Whoops… didn’t finish my response.

    I don’t think the Neo-Calvinists believe they are thieves or predators. Rather, I’d posit that they feel justified in taking back what they consider rightfully theirs in the first place.

  220. @ Darlene:
    Among people whose faith is centered on Jesus Christ, there are far more ‘shared’ beliefs than differences, although the differences need to be considered ….. in that regard, the differences may be numerous in the way of what is ’emphasized’ than not, and that is a fertile place for dialogue because the reasons for the points that are emphasized are often not understood by those who come from another point of emphasis.

    But ‘respect’ and the willingness to listen to one another who share good will are key to understanding. And surely, the real differences that are meaningful to people must also be acknowledged as important to the parties involved

    when politics is involved, that is where I would draw a line because political agendas, when shared, are not the same as centering on Christ, the Source of all unity.

  221. Burwell wrote:

    was introduced to “The Danger of a Single Story” via a TED Talk by Chimamanda Adichie

    That was lovely. Thanks for sharing it Burwell. I have copied it to the top of the page here under the Interesting tab, the Books/Movies/TV/ETC. tab for those who would like to watch it in the future.

  222. Darlene wrote:

    Rather, I’d posit that they feel justified in taking back what they consider rightfully theirs in the first place.

    I would say they feel entitled certainly.

    But how can they “take back” what wasn’t theirs to began with (speaking of a particular church)? Unless you mean the denomination itself.

  223. Lea wrote:

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Whenever I grew it out, it always went straight on one side and wavy on the other like a cartoon character

    You really need to post a picture of that

    I got a perm once, in 4th grade. My hair is very thick. It was not a good look.

    I got a perm back in 1990 (when perms were all the rage), that turned out like the hairdo of Bozo the Clown! Quite embarrassing to say the least.

  224. Lea wrote:

    Darlene wrote:

    Rather, I’d posit that they feel justified in taking back what they consider rightfully theirs in the first place.

    I would say they feel entitled certainly.

    But how can they “take back” what wasn’t theirs to began with (speaking of a particular church)? Unless you mean the denomination itself.

    Remember, the Neo-Cals like to remind folks that the SBC was originally Calvinist. So, they’re only taking local SBC churches back to their *pure* roots in their covert take-overs. For them, it’s a justifiable cause – one that they feel emboldened to defend.

  225. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    In my younger days (before my hair went Targeryn silver), I always wanted to wear my hair moderately-long, as was the style of the time. Unfortunately, my hair has always been too wavy to wear straight and too straight to wear wavy. Whenever I grew it out, it always went straight on one side and wavy on the other like a cartoon character, with turned-up ends all over the place.

    Man bun??

  226. Christiane wrote:

    But ‘respect’ and the willingness to listen to one another who share good will are key to understanding. And surely, the real differences that are meaningful to people must also be acknowledged as important to the parties involved

    So what does this do to your apparently passionate belief that the calvinists’ god is a ‘monster’?

  227. Mae wrote:

    It is quite a twist of the hand, to turn the perpetrated upon, into the villain! Those who dare oppose are branded as rebellious, carnal Christians, etc.All the while the usurper brand themselves as, the purifiers, the protectors of the true gospel of grace, etc.
    It gives me a better feel for the 500 year old Reformation. Don’t agree with the opposition, burn/ban their writings, excile them, call them heretics, etc….All the while the purging group is concentrating power for themselves.

    As close to the Spanish Enquisition as they can get, without doing time in prison for their antics……
    I don’t get it. I used to teach in a Christian school. We were a mix of Baptists (all sorts), Catholics, Methodists, Presbeterians, and no telling what else. If 500 kids can be together in one building for hours and hours every day and get along (play basketball and soccer, do class projects, make music, do fundraisers,go on class trips, etc.) while comparing and contrasting their beliefs, why can’t these adults?

  228. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:

    Mae wrote:

    It is quite a twist of the hand, to turn the perpetrated upon, into the villain! Those who dare oppose are branded as rebellious, carnal Christians, etc.All the while the usurper brand themselves as, the purifiers, the protectors of the true gospel of grace, etc.

    I don’t get it. I used to teach in a Christian school. We were a mix of Baptists (all sorts), Catholics, Methodists, Presbeterians, and no telling what else. If 500 kids can be together in one building for hours and hours every day and get along (play basketball and soccer, do class projects, make music, do fundraisers,go on class trips, etc.) while comparing and contrasting their beliefs, why can’t these adults?

    Because the New Reformation is a cause more Righteous than any other. Those in your school would be seen as compromisers of the truth, willing to capitulate to heresy in order to go along to get along.

  229. elastigirl wrote:

    would you say this is happenstance, simply because they flood the marketplace of ideas with material?
    or would you say it seems to be by design – watching the pulse of trends and of their opponents and responding accordingly to shape (or manipulate) thinking?

    I think it’s a bit of both, but mostly the former. The YRRs seem to feel a need to write often, which results in a lot of meaningless articles. But some of their articles do seem to be in response to what is happening in the blogosphere.

    Here is what 9Marks published today: https://www.9marks.org/article/persecution-and-the-wisdom-of-church-polity/. Note how well it fits with our discussion. He twice stresses that the God-ordained way is best, with the implication that the 9Marks way is God-ordained. So once again, he is using the Bible to prove he is right and others are wrong, and he has the verses to prove it. No room for disagreement because he pulls the “God ordained it” card.

  230. Darlene wrote:

    Remember, the Neo-Cals like to remind folks that the SBC was originally Calvinist. So, they’re only taking local SBC churches back to their *pure* roots in their covert take-overs.

    But they are picking and choosing. To really be pure, they also need to take it back to its pro-slavery roots. I suppose they consider complementarianism the next best thing.

  231. Muff Potter wrote:

    Jeffrey J . Chalmers wrote:
    While I am sure there are many causes of being “nasty”, being convinced that you have the “true way” and that all the other groups are either just “wrong”, or even worse, “compromised” like Ken Ham is quick to say, can lead one to be “nasty”
    While he’s not ‘nasty’ in the usual sense of that particular descriptor, Stephen Hawking (on the other extreme from Ham’s dogma) is just as convinced that his ‘rightness’ is the only ‘truth’ too.

    The real nasty one is richard Dawkins… and Carl Sagan…

  232. Deb wrote:

    I wrote a post about his interesting associations back in 2011.

    http://thewartburgwatch.com/2011/12/09/andy-davis-and-his-associations/

    How someone who has earned an engineering degree from MIT can be associated with the likes of Doug Phillips and Sproul Jr. is mind-boggling. Almost as mind-boggling as Dever’s association with Mahaney. Dever and Davis make perfect sense with their academic credentials. Mahaney, Phillips,and Sproul, Jr. are marketers and showmen. I suppose that is the magic.

  233. Max wrote:

    They slobber forth syrupy promotions of the brethren at every opportunity

    Clobber verses for the pewpeons function well as slobber verses for the professional pulpiteers at their mutual admiration society meetings held at frequent intervals at interesting locations.

  234. Muslin, fka Dee Holmes wrote:

    As I said on Twitter, when it’s a man, it’s a title. When it’s a woman, it’s a description.

    If you were not a rebellious woman trying to bring worldly logic and consistent interpretation into a Spiritual Matter, you would understand. The answer is plainly, “Because it is God’s Good and Perfect Plan and other Biblical Reasons which are too lengthy to mention.” However, you are a woman, and so it is impossible for you to not be rebellious and insubordinate. /CBMW

  235. Deb wrote:

    It appears Davis was in Japan for a very short time since he was able to relocate to Louisville, Kentucky and earn his Ph.D. from Southern Seminary in 1998. Pretty fast work…

    Looks like he went to Japan just long enough to get “Missionary” on the CV. Certainly not long enough to establish relationships there in a very difficult country. The 1998 timing is interesting. Isn’t that about the time that Dever and Mahaney became friends and when 9Marks began taking off? My working hypothesis is that Mahaney provided the “franchising” model for Dever because that is the only explanation I have for their odd couple relationship, especially because Dever abandoned 9Marks’ church discipline dogma when Mahaney fled church discipline from CLC’s elders and hid behind Dever’s cloak at CHBC. It must have been something very important to make Dever do that.

  236. Lea wrote:

    wouldn’t you want to use your engineering degree?

    Engineering can be deadly dull. Standing in front of an adoring audience can be very addictive. Having a large church can lead to a very comfortable lifestyle. Think beyond mere salary. How much salary would you have to make to enjoy a particular *lifestyle.* Free childcare, meals, trips, gifts, etc. Plus the intangibles.

    I do not know Andy Davis. But I can imagine why someone like a guy with a BS in ME from MIT might go for it. He didn’t like engineering enough to pursue graduate work which is where the money might have been, though those days are probably gone.

  237. okrapod wrote:

    So yes, I think we should all try to co-operate for the greater good of society as a whole when we can, but no, I do not think that we should respect any and all beliefs in order to do so. Some beliefs are lies, pitfalls and snares of the adversary.

    Amen, and thank you for saying so. Gramp3 and I are trying very diligently to help someone to see some terrible lies that they have believed and snares that have trapped them. But the worst part of the adversary’s lies is the blindness it brings to the lies. The best thing we can do is to speak the honest truth.

  238. @ Gram3:
    @ okrapod:
    “good will” is not an empty phrase in my comment, no

    I can add that the term ‘good will’ would reflect an absence of malevolence and cruelty; a people who are not involved willingly in malignant actions towards others

  239. @ Gram3:

    i see people everywhere from all different backgrounds, persuasions, & identities easily championing and standing up for equality for all human beings. i see boys & men of all ages standing up for girls & women, wanting them to be treated equally and fairly and respectfully.

    Except for in most of the christian church, which is regressing.

    (i was just looking for a nice synonym for ‘regress’ to put a finer point on it — “go to the dogs” and “hit the skids” were some fun choices — how’s my finer point coming along?)

    but this is old news.

    it’s just so incredibly striking when i read the anti-woman statements coming from 9Marx, TGC, CBMW, and christians who act like celebrities on down to their sycophants & lemmings. it takes my breath away.

    they truly have no idea how clunky and caveman-ish they look, how backwards & out of touch they are — dangerously so. because equality for women is growing the world over (for very good reasons) more & more all the time, gender role patriarchalists will truly be reviled — except it won’t be for Jesus’ sake, and they won’t be blessed because of it. it will be because they are discriminatory & inhumane, exacerbated by a righteousness complex.

    incredibly obnoxious (understatement)

  240. Thank you, @Darlene! And yes, Okrapod, that’s what I was trying to say. Thanks! Now I’ll shut up about it. 😀

  241. Deb wrote:

    It appears Davis was in Japan for a very short time since he was able to relocate to Louisville, Kentucky and earn his Ph.D. from Southern Seminary in 1998. Pretty fast work…

    I have heard it explained along the lines of “Japan is a difficult place to serve as a missionary” and by all accounts. By all accounts, he and his family did not do well there.

  242. Gram3 wrote:

    Looks like he went to Japan just long enough to get “Missionary” on the CV. Certainly not long enough to establish relationships there in a very difficult country.

    Looks good on the resume.

    Ticket Punching.
    Just like all those REMF officers in Vietnam.

  243. elastigirl wrote:

    they truly have no idea how clunky and caveman-ish they look, how backwards & out of touch they are —

    Too busy chanting their mantra of “GOD HATH SAID! GOD HATH SAID! GAWD! GAWD! GAWD!”

  244. Gram3 wrote:

    Engineering can be deadly dull. Standing in front of an adoring audience can be very addictive.

    “SEE HIS FACE! HEAR HIS VOICE! THE VOICE OF A GOD, NOT OF A MAN! THE VOICE OF A GOD, NOT OF A MAN!”

  245. Gram3 wrote:

    However, you are a woman, and so it is impossible for you to not be rebellious and insubordinate. /CBMW

    Also, if you don’t understand that there can be authority without abuse you are just STUPID. TMsomeCBMWGuy

  246. Darlene wrote:

    Because the New Reformation is a cause more Righteous than any other.

    Just like Communism and Talibani/ISIS Islam.
    (Or the Principles of the French Revolution…)
    The Cause so Righteous it justifies any means whatsoever to bring it about.

  247. Darlene wrote:

    I don’t think the Neo-Calvinists believe they are thieves or predators. Rather, I’d posit that they feel justified in taking back what they consider rightfully theirs in the first place.

    So did the Nazis.
    Remember the three axioms of a Grievance Culture:
    1) Once WE Were Lords of All Creation, and Everything Was Perfect!
    2) Then THEY came and took all that away from Us!
    3) PAYBACK TIME! NOW WE TAKE BACK WHAT IS RIGHTFULY OURS!

  248. Gram3 wrote:

    How someone who has earned an engineering degree from MIT can be associated with the likes of Doug Phillips and Sproul Jr. is mind-boggling.

    What?? Education is not the magic cure-all we’ve been assured it is from various circles?

  249. @ Muff Potter:
    my brother-in-law has an engineering degree from MIT and was a captain in the USN, now retired

    engineering is useful in a LOT of fields ….. theology? well, from the evidence given here in this post, apparently not 🙂

  250. Nancy2 (aka Kevlar) wrote:

    If 500 kids can be together in one building for hours and hours every day and get along (play basketball and soccer, do class projects, make music, do fundraisers,go on class trips, etc.) while comparing and contrasting their beliefs, why can’t these adults?

    You’ve observed in real-life-time what author David Mitchell regales us with in fiction from the last few pages of his novel Cloud Atlas.
    Great minds often share the same paths!

  251. Sopwith wrote:

    Q.Respectfully, with historical records of over 50 million deaths and over 1 million plus children abused, at their hands to date, the Roman Catholic Pope(s) and church sit IN PLACE OF Christ?

    What makes you think that today’s Uber-Calvinist or Born-Again Bible Churches wouldn’t have racked up “50 million deaths and over 1 million plus children abused” if THEY had had all those centuries of political power under their belt as well? Look at all the power abuse and child rape scandals and Righteous corruption covered here on TWW!

  252. Sopwith wrote:

    Q.Respectfully, with historical records of over 50 million deaths and over 1 million plus children abused, at their hands to date, the Roman Catholic Pope(s) and church sit IN PLACE OF Christ?

    Please reread Catholic Gate-Crasher’s comment. You’ll find that she made it abundantly clear that there’s plenty of evil to go around on both sides of the great Catholic vs. Protestant divide.

  253. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    I Fear a Cage wrote:

    He is not a Calvinist. He’s viciously anti Calvinist in fact. He’s an independent fundamental baptist.

    IFBs can be every bit as X-Treme and Nasty as New Calvinists.

    Before the rise of the YRRs, IFBs were the type example of Nasty Fundamentalist.

    They are equally horrible indeed. I’ve been surrounded by both my whole life and I find them both sides of the same coin.

  254. Christiane wrote:

    JYJames wrote:

    @ Velour:
    Praying for our dear Christiane. And, yes, update.

    Thanks, Velour
    I’m checking in, typing with one eye bandaged and extremely grateful for the prayers from people here. As far as I know, all is well. Pain block wore off but no pain noticed yet (at least I think pain block wore off )

    Prayed for many today, while going through the procedure, as I know that we in the Body of Christ share one another’s troubles and my surgery journey reinforced that very basic teaching of our faith … if folks ever wonder if any good comes out of our own many troubles that are endured, I always think it must be so that our own well of empathy and compassion for the suffering of others will be deepened. After many, many years, I have come to know this personally in my own ‘kneeling theology’.

    Love to all. Thanks again, good people.

    Glad to hear good news from you. Prayers continuing from here.

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