The First Domino Falls: James MacDonald Is OUT as Speaker for the SBC 2019 Pastors Conference


Image by Ryan Ashton

The process of writing is like creating a game of dominoes: The first domino creates the second incident, and so forth until the end. Asghar Farhadi

__________

I’ve been hearing rumors that some SBC pastors were expressing their concern that James MacDonald was going to be a featured speaker at the SBC’s Pastor’s Conference 2019. I believe this year’s theme is *kingdom character.” (I remember Milton Berle doing a routine on a character reference and saying ” He is a character.”)

Today, a tweet from Danny Wood on the Twitter account for the conference had this to say:

Note the link to the speakers for the conference. MacDonald’s name was removed quicker than you could say “James who?”

Julie Anne Smith was quick to respond.

Why we should temper our excitement

In March, I will have been blogging for 10 years and I’ve seen a thing or two which reminds me of the Farmer’s Insurance commercials. I particularly like the UFH2O.

I know a thing or two since I’ve seen a thing or two and I’ve covered it at TWW.

So here is a list of things to consider.

  • Just like CJ Mahaney stepped down from the T4G conference (twice), MacDonald supposedly did the stepping down from this conference. Remember, Mahaney returned at least once and will probably do so again.
  • Leaders who boot other leaders from conferences always like to make it seem like it was a spontaneous decision from the guy who isn’t coming. According to Wood, MacDonald didn’t get the boot, he decided to stay home for *a season.*
  • *A season* is the new overused word(s). In the past that would include words like *winsome* and *gospel* which was used as an adjective in front of anything one could imagine like *smoking cessation.*
  • *A season* is now a code phrase for *I’m in a heap of trouble and I am working my butt off to dig myself out.*
  • The SBC has absolutely no control over any SBC church which means that churches cannot be kicked out out of the SBC unless they bring in a woman as a pastor and then the SBC leaders find something, somewhere, anywhere, whatever to give them the sack.
  • The second part of the tweet was Wood’s way of saying “We love this guy and hope to goodness he gets the upper hand on this one.”
  • The second part of the tweet only mentions MacDonald, not those being sued and hurt by MacDonald.
  • The SBC is delighted to have a huge church like HBC under their list of churches since every year they have to report how many people are joining the great religious diaspora away from their churches. For those of you who don’t believe me, think CJ Mahaney and the SBC. Long after it was alleged that really bad things were going on in those churches, SGC Louisville was welcomed with open arms into the SBC. Back in 2010, we uncovered Mahaney’s gift of $200,000+ to Al Mohler’s SBTS’s Whatever Fund. We predicted waaaay back then Mahaney was warming up to make the great escape into the bowels of the SBC and he did. We wrote about it here. Brother CJ Mahaney: He’s Done Gone and Joined the Southern Baptists in 2015. We continue to wait for apologies from folks who told us we were losing it back in 2010 when we predicted this would happen. SBTS has gone on to help the SGM/SGC pastors get degrees at SBTS.
  • Also, note the makeup of SGC Louisville’s leadership. 4 out of 7 pastors are part of the Mahaney clan. Ring any bells with HBC?

Reports of MacDonald’s anger issues have captured the Twitterverse.

I’ve been watching the threads over at Twitter. Julie Roys’ Hard times at Harvest has garnered some comments regarding MacDonald’s anger issues. Let’s look at them again. I highlighted one on my last post. Scroll down to this section: Does James MacDonald have serious and even alarming anger issues? This is a new revelation.

The” butter knife that may have touched a picture” incident.

Here is another example reported by Roys.

Two: Former Camp Harvest groundskeeper Mike Hulburt told me that in 2010, he saw MacDonald use a butter knife to stab repeatedly a picture of a former Harvest pastor in front of 15 to 20 close associates. Another witness, who asked to remain anonymous for fear of losing his livelihood, confirmed that MacDonald stabbed the picture multiple times “to get his point across.” Hulburt said the incident happened in the camp dining hall immediately after MacDonald yelled at the former camp director, Dan Plantz, asking why he had not gotten rid of the picture.

MacDonald’s explanation had me laughing for 5 minutes.

MacDonald told WORLD, “I didn’t stab any pictures. … I may have put my knife up against it or into it.” He described the incident as a “performance issue” regarding “multiple pictures on the wall that were outdated.”

Then I became deeply concerned. If these incidents are true, then MacDonald appears to have some serious issues.This type of behavior should cause concern amongst even the most loyal of SBC leaders. At the minimum, I would avoid be in a dark room alone with him…

Why we should not be discouraged.

  • I know that a number of SBC pastors expressed concern over MacDonald’s inclusion in the SBC *He’s quite a kingdom character* Pastors Conference.
  • I think MacDonald may have been encouraged to step away.
  • The tweet by Woods appears to indicate that MacDonald is stepping away from ALL outside engagements *for a season.*
  • Since I am sure that World Magazine had lawyers (lots and lots of lawyers) review Roys’ article, it seems to me that they believed that her research was truthful. That is a key element in any libel lawsuit. If so, I think TED and their wives may expect to prevail if MacDonald and his lawyer plan to proceed. In fact, I might venture to guess that he will back off. If he doesn’t, I cannot wait to see all the documents that will be made part of the public court record. I bet they will keep me in posts for a year!
  • Did you ever consider how silly this lawsuit is? First of all, he sued Roys before her article even appeared. It was a *prospective* lawsuit. I’m still wondering what TED’s wives did. This stuff is wild!
  • I believe that God is allowing the truth to come out. There have been reports about HBC/HBF for years. Light is a great disinfectant.
  • Do you think he’s posted my mug on his target practice wall? If so, could whoever is there save it? I will put it on eBay and give the proceeds to TED, wives and Roys.

PS: For SBC trolls: When we say we are excited, we are excited for justice and for truth. So stop with the *They’re gloating over the demise of the SBC again.”

#IstandwithTED,wivesandRoys #dropthelawsuitalready


Comments

The First Domino Falls: James MacDonald Is OUT as Speaker for the SBC 2019 Pastors Conference — 147 Comments

  1. “MacDonald was going to be a featured speaker at the SBC’s Pastor’s Conference 2019. I believe this year’s theme is “kingdom character.””

    “My initial response was to sue her for defamation of character, but then I realized that I had no character.” Charles Barkley

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  2. “Why was a pastor who sues, has a history of spiritual abuse, considered for speaking at this conference in the first place?” (Julie Anne Smith)

    Because he is idolized by the young, restless and reformed who are taking over the Southern Baptist Convention. He would pack the seats at the conference center with New Calvinist fans. Bad-boy preachers are not that big a deal to them … they also adored Mark Driscoll.

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  3. “The second part of the tweet only mentions MacDonald, not those being sued and hurt by MacDonald”

    I had the same thought when U read the tweet. I am a newbie at TWW but read enough to see this narcissistic response is repeated by pastors, elders, and trustees when one of their own is in trouble. They pay lip service to proclaim truth and chose self-protection over truth and honesty. Very disturbing. I do not want to hear ANY sermon coming out of the mouth of these people. They are whitewashed tombs.

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  4. Here’s my guess on the timeline of events:

    Steps down from speaking engagements for a season,
    James takes a sabbatical for a season,
    more stories, revelations, and allegations emerge for a season,
    church does more damage control and PR spin for a season,
    a really bad story cripples the church for a season,
    lawsuits are dropped,
    James resigns as pastor (for a season),
    HBC goes the way of the dodo bird and Mars Hill Seattle (for…ever)
    James resurfaces after a period of repentance as a pastor in Arizona.

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  5. Seasons only last 3 months—these guys seem to repent and reboot pretty fast so maybe it’s accurate in their minds. But I still dislike the word intensely.

    Also how does a butter knife “”possibly go into a canvas” without a stab!?!
    Crazy

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  6. Joe:
    James resurfaces after a period of repentance as a pastor in Arizona.

    And that “period of repentance” is only about a year. It’s becomes clear that good ole Jimmy has been working hard behind the scenes to set up his new church for most of that time.

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  7. Joe: James resigns as pastor (for a season),
    HBC goes the way of the dodo bird and Mars Hill Seattle (for…ever)
    James resurfaces after a period of repentance as a pastor in Arizona.

    Warren Throckmorton spent a lot of time getting to know former Mars Hill members of all shapes, sizes, and shades of opinion on the Mars Hill setup. He found that in the end, Mars Hill was said to have created as many atheists as christians.

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  8. Incredible post, Dee! So many of us are anxiously awaiting the fall of many more dominoes. Today may be the day that Mark Aderholt is indicted,and that would be another domino.

    Loved this: “The SBC has absolutely no control over any SBC church which means that churches cannot be kicked out out of the SBC unless they bring in a woman as a pastor and then the SBC leaders find something, somewhere, anywhere, whatever to give them the sack.”

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  9. Nick Bulbeck: Mars Hill was said to have created as many atheists as christians

    “Not many [of you] should become teachers [serving in an official teaching capacity], my brothers and sisters, for you know that we [who are teachers] will be judged by a higher standard [because we have assumed greater accountability and more condemnation if we teach incorrectly].” (James 3:1 AMP)

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  10. If the salt hath lost its savor, wherewith shall it be … seasoned?

    Poking around the TED site, reading posts going back to its founding, it appears that the leadership response has always been “damage control” rather than real change. Treat the symptoms or manage the perceptions of the symptoms rather than address the heart of the problems, which would appear to be “problems of the heart.”

    Stepping out of the limelight for a season sounds like more damage control; let the buzz die down and then carry on as before. One hopes that significant change will eventually take place, though it is probably unreasonable to hope that this will be in the form of “genuine repentance.”

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  11. Joe: a season

    Yep, those of us who follow celebrities in the Christian Industrial Complex know exactly what “season” means. MacDonald is done, but he ain’t quit yet. Look for him to take his Vertical brand in a new direction after a season … he won’t stay horizontal long.

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  12. Muff Potter: Yeah, Arizona seems to be these guys’s Paraguay so to speak.

    Hey, I could be wrong. He seems to like Naples, Florida, and it seems like a nice, sunny option if he wants to write a slightly different happy ending to his story from Driscoll’s.

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  13. Joe: HBC goes the way of the dodo bird and Mars Hill Seattle (for…ever)
    James resurfaces after a period of repentance as a pastor in Arizona.

    Did I miss Driscoll’s display of sackcloth and ashes?! IMO, he made an unrepentant comeback.

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  14. Samuel Conner: If the salt hath lost its savor, wherewith shall it be … seasoned?

    Celebrity preachers put a whole new spin on “seasoned.” When they face shame and disqualification from ministry, they get seasoned and then end up seasoning gullible followers again for yet another season.

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  15. Joe:
    James MacDonald really messed with the wrong woman.

    http://julieroys.com/harvest-elder-accuses-church-leaders-deceitfulness-manipulation-attempting-run-cult/

    It does seem, IMO, a bit … unwise to grant legal discovery powers to a skilled investigative journalist.

    That the suit was filed before JR’s piece was published does make it, IMO, look a great deal like a SLAPP. I hope that the suits are dismissed with prejudice (can never be re-filed; mere dismissal keeps open the option to act again in future), and that the defendants recover their costs from the plaintiffs.

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  16. Joe: http://julieroys.com/harvest-elder-accuses-church-leaders-deceitfulness-manipulation-attempting-run-cult/

    It’s clear that the HBC elder board has absolutely no authority over James MacDonald. I suspect they all got along OK as long as they were yes-men, but when an elder opposes The Man, they pay the price. HBC has all the characteristics of a cult of personality … there is only one persona on the throne there … all who question the king are shown the door.

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  17. Disclaimer: All my comments regarding James MacDonald were given in my humble opinion, some subjective others objective. My concern rests solely for the Body of Christ and not with the ministries of mere men.

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  18. Samuel Conner: It does seem, IMO, a bit … unwise to grant legal discovery powers to a skilled investigative journalist.

    That the suit was filed before JR’s piece was published does make it, IMO, look a great deal like a SLAPP. I hope that the suits are dismissed with prejudice (can never be re-filed; mere dismissal keeps open the option to act again in future), and that the defendants recover their costs from the plaintiffs.

    It always was a SLAPP. HBC continues to say in its statements to the church that it would drop the lawsuits immediately if they would stop, take down the blog, etc. They are making it so obvious that it is a SLAPP and they’ll never win, but they opened themselves up to discovery, as you said. Strictly from a strategic perspective, they have so colossally bungled this whole thing that they have made it easy to be exposed. But then again, HBC went to legal war with a DUI lawyer.

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  19. It’s probably a good thing. But we’ll see if it lasts. These guys have a way of recycling back. Hard to let go of power.

    Also, whenever I see the frequency of Christianese increase (season, brother, thankful, ministry, prayers) I get worried. It almost always means something is being covered up.

    Truthful people usually speak and write plainly. When the flower language and slippery terms with little concrete meaning come out, there’s usually a lack of truth.

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  20. __

    #Delayed Blog Dung: “News Media 501c3 Pastoral Exposure: Extreme Extraneous Exploits Examined, Perhaps?
    *
    hmmm…
    *
    Forget the conference. I believe this HBC year-end theme is *kingdom come”, as in calvinesta blown to…
    *
    501c3 Pastors speaking without really listening to Jesus, or His people?
    *
    hmmm…
    *
    (now they are suing da very people they were called and sent to serve?)
    *
    huh?
    *
    ‘Vacuum Whispering ‘ ™ the sound of calvinesta conundrum disruption… (1)
    *
    What?
    *
    I don’t think so.
    *
    SKreeeeeeeeeetch!
    *
    Shout it from the housetops!
    *
    hahahahahaha
    *
    They have simply made Jesus’ words have no meaning?
    *
    bump.
    *
    No wonder so many folk are NOW laughing.
    *
    (sadface)
    *
    I will continue to lôôk unto the hills from ‘where’ my help doth come…
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=sIaT8Jl2zpI
    *
    (tears)
    *
    Wartburg, Jesus already voted for ‘yours truly’ @ Calvery…
    *
    Good enough? You bet!
    *
    ATB
    *
    *
    Sòpy

    (1) https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=u9Dg-g7t2l4
    Beneficial Bonus:
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=n_aVFVveJNs

    ;~)
    – –

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  21. Unfortunately, Illinois’ SLAPP law has been interpreted by the Illinois Supreme court very narrowly. Unless it can be shown that the defendant was trying to obtain favorable government action, their law won’t apply. There is also an exclusion if the plaintiff’s intent is to recover for defamation, which at least on the face of the complaint is alleged. See http://www.dmlp.org/legal-guide/anti-slapp-law-illinois. So SLAPP probably won’t help the defendants here.

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  22. “His own local church ministry?”???
    If Mr McDonald was really focusing on his own church he’d return to Elgin from Florida and step away from Walk in the Word. What, he isn’t doing that? Didn’t think so.

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  23. Last night I dreamt of an angry…but strangely armed…Julia Childs. She kept shouting something about…Everything is better with butter knives.

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  24. MacDonald told WORLD, “I didn’t stab any pictures. … I may have put my knife up against it or into it.”

    This guy sounds almost like a five year old… 😀

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  25. Samuel Conner: It does seem, IMO, a bit … unwise to grant legal discovery powers to a skilled investigative journalist.

    Agreed. Which is why I believe this lawsuit isn’t intended ever to go to court. It’s meant (in my personal opinion and best guess) to cause so much emotional and financial hardship to the defendants that they will eventually agree to settle out of court, promising their future silence in exchange for the dropping of all financial claims against them, and wrapping up everything with an all-encompassing non-disclosure agreement.

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  26. NJ:
    MacDonald told WORLD, “I didn’t stab any pictures. … I may have put my knife up against it or into it.”

    This guy sounds almost like a five year old…

    Almost?

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  27. Cheryl Summers:

    Loved this:“The SBC has absolutely no control over any SBC church which means that churches cannot be kicked out out of the SBC unless they bring in a woman as a pastor and then the SBC leaders find something, somewhere, anywhere, whatever to give them the sack.”

    Odd considering how popular Beth Moore is. But then Moore is a huge money maker for them.

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  28. Why do these people go into ministry? It seems like they want to be stars with all the trappings of wealth, fame, power, money. Spirituality *should* be the opposite of that, camel, eye of the needle, etc. I have my guesses on it but what do others think?

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  29. DD:
    Why do these people go into ministry? It seems like they want to be stars with all the trappings of wealth, fame, power, money. Spirituality *should* be the opposite of that, camel, eye of the needle, etc. I have my guesses on it but what do others think?

    I have known people who wanted to be in ministry because it was a way to be looked up to. Motive was seemingly “fear of man.” I don’t think money was the prime motive for these.

    I knew another who was pursuing what seemed to be a praiseworthy “vision” but who, I think, lost his way through what I think were outside influences — following the example of the wrong people, IMO. It’s a bit alarming to reflect on the ways that the congregational governance was modified to resemble what is standard in the megas. It didn’t work out in the end, which I interpret to be a mercy of God toward both him and the people he was leading.

    “the heart is deceitful above all things”; I think that it’s really easy to be corrupted by the opportunities for self-enrichment that are presented by any position of power. Positions that notionally have “divine authority” are even more perilous. People in such positions should welcome weakness and vulnerability to critique and removal by independent oversight. But they rarely do, and that might be a reliable mark of someone who no longer can be trusted. “A wise man loves correction”; people who resist it are not wise and should not have oversight of others.

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  30. Samuel Conner: I think that it’s really easy to be corrupted by the opportunities for self-enrichment that are presented by any position of power.

    “For the hearts of Men are easily corrupted, and a Ring of POWER has a Will of its own.”

    Positions that notionally have “divine authority” are even more perilous.

    Because “notionally divine authority” ramps everything up to (literally) Cosmic Importance.

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  31. fisher,

    Exactly!!! W can only hope Chicagoland won’t be ok sitting In their coldness pews while their pastors parks his pew in Naples Florida. Haha that people would even go for this is disheartening

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  32. Kudos for highlighting the report of the stabbing of the photo of a former employee! As I said before, if any boss I have had did that I would start to wonder if my boss is psychotic! This is disturbing behavior for anyone. It is beyond outrageous for someone claiming to be a leader and a teacher for Jesus Christ. MacDonald with his lawsuit has pointed his big shotgun at his own feet and fired. I saw what happened with Mark Driscoll so I know where this all is heading. Another leader crawls away like a cockroach and his kingdom will be broken up and given to others. It is just a matter of time now.

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  33. Lily Rose: churches cannot be kicked out out of the SBC unless they bring in a woman as a pastor … Odd considering how popular Beth Moore is

    Ms. Moore is given the nod because she is a teacher, not a pastor … and teaches only women.

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  34. Ann: We can only hope Chicagoland won’t be ok sitting In their coldness pews while their pastors parks his pew in Naples Florida.

    As long as they still have their coffee lounge and cool music on stage, they won’t care much if pastor is piped in.

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  35. As a long-time SBC-er, I’m really not as concerned as to how or why MacDonald is no longer speaking at that conference as much as I am just glad to know that he’s OUT! He hardly exhibits any “kingdom character” by suing people who speak the truth about him and his “ministry”. Perhaps Mr. MacDonald can spend his “season” of stepping away from outside speaking engagements by learning the finer arts of selling used cars*! It seems like an occupation best-suited for a conniving, silver-tongued snake oil salesman like him! Good riddance!

    *No offense intended to any decent used car salespersons out there! 🙂

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  36. Max: they won’t care much if pastor is piped in.

    Years ago, when Tom Baker was Doctor Who (that is, the Fourth Doctor), there was a story set on Pluto where the antagonist was a liquid life-form. If they got one of those, he could really be piped in.

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  37. Nick Bulbeck: Years ago, when Tom Baker was Doctor Who (that is, the Fourth Doctor), there was a story set on Pluto where the antagonist was a liquid life-form. If they got one of those, he could really be piped in.

    “The Sun Merchants”?

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  38. Did he resign or did he get the boot? I’m taking a poll.

    I’m for “Das Boot”.
    He became too much of a liability.

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  39. The second part of the tweet only mentions MacDonald, not those being sued and hurt by MacDonald.

    Only Highborn matter, NOT Lowborn.

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  40. grberry: So SLAPP probably won’t help the defendants here.

    Does it matter? It appears to me, from the newest article, that everything the bloggers said is probably true, so how can they be sued for anything?!

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  41. Bridget: Does it matter? It appears to me, from the newest article, that everything the bloggers said is probably true, so how can they be sued for anything?!

    Harassment.

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  42. Headless Unicorn Guy: He became too much of a liability.

    Yes, a Southern Baptist potato too hot to handle, who also happens to be one of the reformed anointed, is not good for SBC’s New Calvinist movement. Moving from the asset column to the liability ledger undoubtedly precipitated some calls from the Mohlerites to disappear for a season.

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  43. Root 66: As a long-time SBC-er, I’m really not as concerned as to how or why MacDonald is no longer speaking at that conference as much as I am just glad to know that he’s OUT! He hardly exhibits any “kingdom character”

    Looking at the speakers list, perhaps the theme should be Kingdom “Characters” … Russell Moore and David Platt are also on the program. Whew! The SBC is sure going on a carnival ride with these guys! After 70 years, I had to get off of it before I got sick.

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  44. Max: Yes, a Southern Baptist potato too hot to handle, who also happens to be one of the reformed anointed, is not good for SBC’s New Calvinist movement.Moving from the asset column to the liability ledger undoubtedly precipitated some calls from the Mohlerites to disappear for a season.

    A sad thing is that they are going to keep having these types of scandals because this is the type of person that movement creates and develops. And since those types of men are the ones holding the purse strings, they’re going to try their hardest not to admit that’s the root of the problem.

    The saddest thing is that people will continue to be hurt by men like Macdonald.

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  45. ishy: A sad thing is that they are going to keep having these types of scandals because this is the type of person that movement creates and develops.

    Mahaney, Driscoll, MacDonald have all been major “influencers” in the New Calvinist movement. There are hundreds/thousands in American pulpits influenced by these men and their messages. They are coming to a church near you.

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  46. ishy: The saddest thing is that people will continue to be hurt by men like Macdonald.

    Only if they let themselves.
    Nobody is holding a gun to their heads and making them kow-tow to these mountebanks.

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  47. DD:
    Why do these people go into ministry? It seems like they want to be stars with all the trappings of wealth, fame, power, money. Spirituality *should* be the opposite of that, camel, eye of the needle, etc. I have my guesses on it but what do others think?

    I was there in the beginning when James was a young youth pastor in Bible school. He had passion and love for the Lord and his sheep. This is so sad. May God bring him to true repentance and spiritual knowledge, and heal the hurt and damage.

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  48. Things are just getting worse and worse for James. He needs to step down immediately and all of the elders need to be replaced. But I’m pretty sure they won’t. HBC is in serious damage control mode at the moment. Someone I know who is a small group leader at one of the Chicago campuses said he received an email basically saying do not talk about this issue with James and the articles/lawsuit that have come out with the people in your group. If anyone has any questions just refer them to the pastors. Apparently, as a leader, it’s not fruitful listening to another members concerns for the church and discussing those legitimate concerns. Control control control!

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  49. Muff Potter: Nobody is holding a gun to their heads and making them kow-tow to these mountebanks.

    Exactly. These “preachers” would have no stage if it weren’t for a willingly audience emptying their pockets to keep them on it. I can’t believe the gullibility of folks who follow these bad actors. “Oh, BUT, he delivers such good sermons” … “Oh, BUT, the music is so cool” … “Oh, BUT, we have such a great ‘community’ here” … church as entertainment always has a bunch of big buts in it!

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  50. Catholic Gate-Crasher: IIRC y’all don’t have Judith in y’all’s Bibles. Jael was a piker compared with Judith.

    The Apocrypha were included in the first edition (1611) of the King James Bible.

    They were probably removed from later editions as a result of anti-Catholic sentiment by powerful Protestant churchmen with an axe to grind.

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  51. Cheryl Summers: Loved this: “The SBC has absolutely no control over any SBC church which means that churches cannot be kicked out out of the SBC unless they bring in a woman as a pastor and then the SBC leaders find something, somewhere, anywhere, whatever to give them the sack.”

    That is the one part I disagree with, while the SBC doesn’t have control over any SBC church, it doesn’t mean that they can’t be kicked out. I remember a church near me was once kicked out of their local association because of the Pastor’s conduct, for a few years, until he showed remorse and repentance, then they were readmitted. Their local associations and the state and national conventions are well within their rights to disfellowship a church whose Pastor and Elders behave in such a way as to bring shame on the SBC and wider Christendom. It is funny that so many of these newer “pastors” are big on church discipline against their own congregation, but they circle the wagons when it comes to disciplining one of their own.

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  52. JULIE ROYS could teach James McDonald and his puppet Elder board a thing or two about how to “ACT LIKE MEN”.maybe she could be the key note speaker for the 2019 Palooza for all 3 of the brain washed men who might show up…..she is an excellant example of how a Christian counts the cost of following Christ and pays the price, a real role model for a lot of Christians me included….I have nothing but respect for her courage and her class standing up for truth at Moody and Harvest Bible chapel
    has cost her alot.

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  53. Muff Potter: Only if they let themselves.
    Nobody is holding a gun to their heads and making them kow-tow to these mountebanks.

    A lot of people in these churches don’t have any idea what’s going on and have fairly good experiences until they ask a question or want to relocate, and are suddenly facing church discipline and mass shunning from their friends. A lot of the drama in the bigger churches happens in the leadership and behind closed doors and is kept very hush-hush.

    Harvest, Highpoint, and other churches who’ve had these big scandals are a little bit different because the bad stuff went public before it really came down on the average member. But these guys are still master manipulators.

    I do think some of them, and Macdonald may be one, aren’t as good at hiding their bad sides, but some of them are quite good at that (I’ve met them).

    I was watching Leah Remini’s Scientology show last night, and one of the reruns was about people who have committed suicide. One woman was talking about her husband and how after he killed himself, she was not allowed to talk about it, and people were asking her where he was. The official answer was that he left Scientology, and was therefore shunned. She said there were probably people that still didn’t know he died.

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  54. Every story HBC puts out should be prefaced with a note about JM knifing pictures of his enemies. Once you learn that, it is difficult to take anything the elders say seriously. How could that NOT be addressed? It is either true or it isn’t, and if it is true, he should be removed from leadership on a permanent basis.

    It’s not really that difficult of a question, and the elders failure to address it(unless they did address it and I missed it) does not pass the smell test.

    That issue is the elephant in the room.

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  55. NJ: MacDonald told WORLD, “I didn’t stab any pictures. … I may have put my knife up against it or into it.”

    This guy sounds almost like a five year old…

    Nah…more like Mr Clinton.
    Or maybe that’s the same thing?

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  56. Jarrett Edwards: the SBC doesn’t have control over any SBC church

    The New Calvinist wave within SBC has brought in a lot of odd-ball ministers and their ministries in recent years: Acts29 Network (Driscoll’s old outfit) … SGM (C.J. Mahaney) … Harvest (James MacDonald) … and assorted others. If the local SBC associations have no problem with them, they proliferate within the SBC family. It’s been my experience (a previous 70-year Southern Baptist), that the Director of Missions in associations of SBC churches across the country (the eyes and ears of the State SBC conventions) don’t cause much of a stir unless the denominational statement of faith is violated in some manner. Otherwise bad-boy preachers who adhere to the Baptist Faith and Message (2000 revision) usually aren’t touched.

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  57. FREEATLAST: https://t.co/v40LwzVmb4
    JULIE ROYS
    WYLL 1160 AM
    STARTS AT AROUND MINUTE 25:30

    MacDonald and friends are trying to reduce Sister Roys to an “accuser of the brethren.” But, she is truly a watchman on the wall. With cyberspace allowing the church at large to look closely at wayward ministers and ministries these days, the brethren across America need to be on guard. Watchmen are standing ready to inform and warn … they will do their job to protect the Body of Christ. If they sound the trumpet and it is ignored, the hedge goes down … the counterfeit wins and the genuine suffers.

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  58. FREEATLAST:
    Samuel Conner,

    https://twitter.com/craighfrench

    MORE

    That’s a helpful thread!

    At some point, one hopes that there will be widespread curiosity about “what is it that these people seem so eager to conceal?”

    Form 99Os for all non-profits, IMO. That churches are exempted from this requirement would appear to be a special treatment of religion, which (it seems to me) is incompatible with the “no law respecting an establishment of religion” part of the 1st Amendment. They should be treated the same as every other non-profit.

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  59. Dan keller,

    “a real role model for a lot of Christians me included….I have nothing but respect for her courage and her class standing up for truth at Moody and Harvest Bible chapel
    has cost her alot.”
    ++++++++++++++

    oh, the many male christian leaders in The Gospel Coalition & elsewhere who come to mind,

    who cower and shrink in silence instead of taking a stand against egregious wrongdoing.

    who hide behind ‘theology’ and “i-heard-something-about-lawsuit-or-lawyers-so-i’m-sure-that-means-i’m-not-allowed-to-comment”.

    “my hands are tied, you see.”

    please.

    passing the buck. deliberately choosing the cowardly thing, and blaming BibleGod, lawyers, and insurance companies.

    oh, the contrast between Julie Roys and the Gospel-men in The Gospel Coalition with so-called male-headship in their loins of shrinking timidity.

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  60. Nick Bulbeck: The Sun Makers, to be precise, but yes, that’s the one.

    I am very familiar with the Fourth Doctor. In my area the local PBS station used to run Doctor Who every Saturday, and the Whovians were well-represented in their fundraisers. And the Doctor was always the Fourth Doctor, Hat, Scarf, Jellybabies and all.

    Then a few years back they stopped to concentrate on Social Justice and Highbrow stuff, and they’ve been struggling ever since.

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  61. Katie: Things are just getting worse and worse for James. He needs to step down immediately and all of the elders need to be replaced. But I’m pretty sure they won’t.

    He’ll go into the Crack of Doom clutching and stroking “My PRECIOUSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!”

    “For the hearts of Men are easily corrupted; and a Ring of POWER has a Will of its own.”

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  62. ishy,

    Having been a former Harvest Naperville (now Highpoint) member I left due to some of the issues raises on the Elephant debt. When I asked for a budget I was given the Harvest run around. Highpoint is also a personality driven church. They have been snapping up smaller churches like a shark feeding frenzy. If Ron gets hit by a bus.. these churches will collapse because they are personality driven.

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  63. As with a lot of situations and churches like this, I would love to know Harvest’s church discipline policy. I wonder if MacDonald will pull a Driscoll and just leave the church while he should be under the elders’ discipline?

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  64. Joe: Samuel Conner: It does seem, IMO, a bit … unwise to grant legal discovery powers to a skilled investigative journalist.

    That the suit was filed before JR’s piece was published does make it, IMO, look a great deal like a SLAPP. I hope that the suits are dismissed with prejudice (can never be re-filed; mere dismissal keeps open the option to act again in future), and that the defendants recover their costs from the plaintiffs.

    It always was a SLAPP. HBC continues to say in its statements to the church that it would drop the lawsuits immediately if they would stop, take down the blog, etc. They are making it so obvious that it is a SLAPP and they’ll never win, but they opened themselves up to discovery, as you said. Strictly from a strategic perspective, they have so colossally bungled this whole thing that they have made it easy to be exposed. But then again, HBC went to legal war with a DUI lawyer.

    Which is why this whole thing reeks to high heaven, if you’ll pardon the pun. JMac is not that stupid, whatever else one might want to think of him. I cannot help but suspect that this is the same carnival tactic being perpetrated in the political spectrum, both of which leads one to ask, so what is really going down that we are being distracted from noticing? Note that in the carnival people are so entertained and bemused by all the excitement that they don’t notice, until too late, how their money is going down the drain in pursuit of cheap toys in rigged games. I cannot help but suspect that our modern carnival barkers have been set upon us to keep our eyes off of what really matters. I’m sure he’s hoping for a soft landing, like Driscoll, but I suspect JMac has been told to press the self destruct button on his enterprise and move on.

    This has been going on for centuries, as people have been swindled of their homes, land, livelihoods and sometimes lives, in pursuit of the false promised land our modern prophets of progress always dangle before our eyes. The religious ‘gods of this world’ work hand in hand with the political ‘gods of this world’.

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  65. John: Also, whenever I see the frequency of Christianese increase (season, brother, thankful, ministry, prayers) I get worried. It almost always means something is being covered up.

    Truthful people usually speak and write plainly. When the flower language and slippery terms with little concrete meaning come out, there’s usually a lack of truth.

    Agreed. Whatever eventually comes out, it will be but the half of it.

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  66. Mr. Jesperson: I saw what happened with Mark Driscoll so I know where this all is heading. Another leader crawls away like a cockroach and his kingdom will be broken up and given to others. It is just a matter of time now.

    Yep. And he’ll ‘retire’ with a happy new flock in Naples, who are oblivious to his crimes.

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  67. TS00: Yep. And he’ll ‘retire’ with a happy new flock in Naples, who are oblivious to his crimes.

    Perhaps a modest but valuable “upside” to these things is that it is becoming widely apparent that “conformity to doctrinal standards” and “skill in public communication of doctrinal and religious motivational content” are not strongly correlated with “truth in the inner man”, or “Christ-like character” or any of the NT marks of suitability for pastoral “office”, other than the single criterion of “able to teach”.

    (The recent example of TJC comes to mind, though that was not a mega-church context; others could be cited.)

    One of the “features” of the mega-church model is that by removing the public teacher from near contact with most of the flock, it permits a decoupling of the “teaching/exhortation” function from the more interpersonal aspects of pastoral ministry in which the fruits of the Spirit are essential. This decoupling works — for a time — as a business model because it promotes the gathering of large groups under a single superficially appealing teacher. But because the primary public “face” of the ministry does not have to exhibit spiritual graces in interpersonal interaction with the flock (since there isn’t much of that kind of interaction), it allows lack of grace to proliferate behind the scenes. That may eventually lead to bad outcomes that cannot be concealed.

    Perhaps one could put a hopeful gloss on this and speculate that “we are learning what does not work” as a way of God-honoringly “being church”. Perhaps this model will eventually be abandoned.

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  68. Suzanne:
    They have been snapping up smaller churches like a shark feeding frenzy.

    That’s a newer tactic via the New Calvinists. New Cals love their takeovers. Initially, new pastors were encouraged to go into churches and take them over from inside, but the New Cal megas picking up small churches and turning them into satellite campuses is an extension of that practice, I think.

    A lot of the non-Calvinist megas with satellite churches, such as Northpoint, intentionally planted their satellite campuses in high income level areas. I would be curious to know if HBC and others that are taking over smaller churches are choosing based on similar reasons. I don’t know Chicago well enough, so do you think that is true?

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  69. FREEATLAST: https://www.christianpost.com/news/harvest-bible-chapel-james-macdonald-scrutinized-for-culture-of-fear-intimidation-church-denies.html

    CHRISTIAN POST

    “HBC filed an emergency motion in court, an entry of protective order Friday to seal all the documents Roys subpoenaed, which the judged denied Tuesday morning. They then filed a regular motion which will be heard in January.” They must finally realize what a mistake they made in filing a lawsuit against Julie Roys.

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  70. Samuel Conner: Perhaps a modest but valuable “upside” to these things is that it is becoming widely apparent that “conformity to doctrinal standards” and “skill in public communication of doctrinal and religious motivational content” are not strongly correlated with “truth in the inner man”, or “Christ-like character” or any of the NT marks of suitability for pastoral “office”, other than the single criterion of “able to teach”.

    Samuel Connor – I think your words are wise. Maybe the focus for those who teach should be more than eloquence or knowledge, but alignment with a “son of peace” (Lk. 10:4-6). What a noble contrast that would be to the bullying tactics that seem to be pervasive in some faith communities.

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  71. I just had a thought–Macdonald shot at photos of two elders’ wives. One of the wives is married to the former elder board chairman. HBC’s lawsuit includes the wives of the bloggers at TED for no apparent reason.

    There’s got to be a connection here. Why would Macdonald blame these wives? Particularly, why would he shoot at the wives of elders, but not the elders themselves? We’ve already questioned why he would include wives in a lawsuit for something in which they don’t seem to be involved?

    Macdonald must have some serious issues…

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  72. Joe: But then again, HBC went to legal war with a DUI lawyer.

    I have read on at least two blogs where people have pointed out that HBC/MacDonald hired a DUI lawyer. These blogs have suggested that maybe MacDonald had a hard time finding a lawyer whose expertise is in lawsuits to take on this case and thus had to go to a DUI lawyer. Does anyone have any thoughts on this?

    Then again maybe this DUI lawyer is another friend/family of MacDonald and is a way to put this lawyer on the family payroll like MacDonald has already done with some of his family including wife.

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  73. TS00: Which is why this whole thing reeks to high heaven, if you’ll pardon the pun. JMac is not that stupid, whatever else one might want to think of him. I cannot help but suspect that this is the same carnival tactic being perpetrated in the political spectrum, both of which leads one to ask, so what is really going down that we are being distracted from noticing? Note that in the carnival people are so entertained and bemused by all the excitement that they don’t notice, until too late, how their money is going down the drain in pursuit of cheap toys in rigged games.

    This is a good point. I agree that James MacDonald isn’t this stupid unless he really is that arrogant that something good for him and HBC would come from this.

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  74. Steve240: I have read on at least two blogs where people have pointed out that HBC/MacDonald hired a DUI lawyer.These blogs have suggested that maybe MacDonald had a hard time finding a lawyer whose expertise is in lawsuits to take on this case and thus had to go to a DUI lawyer.Does anyone have any thoughts on this?

    Then again maybe this DUI lawyer is another friend/family of MacDonald and is a way to put this lawyer on the family payroll like MacDonald has already done with some of his family including wife.

    The general consensus of opinion that I have encountered online, of those not a priori hostile to TED, seems to be that the suit does not have a lot of merit. It may be that a skilled defamation litigator would be reluctant to take on a case that he considered unlikely to be winnable. If, has been suggested, this is actually essentially a SLAPP, it might not really need a skilled litigator to run up the defendants’ legal bills and pressure them to settle on terms favorable to the plaintiffs. It might be enough to be able to file motion after motion which the defendants are obliged to respond to (and pay for). If this is really the intent, one would hope that the judge would perceive this and grant an early dismissal. Until then, one prays for the defendants that they will have the fortitude and resources to carry on.

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  75. Sadly, I believe there are other Harvest churches outside of the “main-hub” so to speak that are definitely following similar patterns of spiritual abuse as well as a lack of transparency, humility and accountability within the church leadership. One for sure that I know of is the Harvest in DeKalb. Numerous families have left that church (mine included and my husband was an elder there). Many senior pastors of the once Harvest Bible Fellowship have been trained and groomed by the “mother ship”.

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  76. Samuel Conner: other than the single criterion of “able to teach”.

    I would question that one too. Some mega pastors teach people that, if they do not tithe according to that mega’s definition, doors will open in their souls and demons will infest them.

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  77. Samuel Conner: the primary public “face” of the ministry does not have to exhibit spiritual graces in interpersonal interaction with the flock (since there isn’t much of that kind of interaction)

    We went to a stadium where one guy stood on his seat, facing backwards, and watched the entire NFL game on the giant screen up above the top section. Now I’m wondering if he belonged to one of those multi-campus megas, and had lost his ability to look at 3-D humans.

    More seriously, I have attended a couple of churches with 1000+ members, as well as smaller churches. There’s no way I would join a church where I could not get to know the clergy. I have learned so much from their kindness, tact, and skillful listening. They have helped our family through rough spots, too. I don’t expect close friendships with clergy, but I do expect to be part of a beloved community.

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  78. Steve240: I have read on at least two blogs where people have pointed out that HBC/MacDonald hired a DUI lawyer.These blogs have suggested that maybe MacDonald had a hard time finding a lawyer whose expertise is in lawsuits to take on this case and thus had to go to a DUI lawyer.Does anyone have any thoughts on this?

    Then again maybe this DUI lawyer is another friend/family of MacDonald and is a way to put this lawyer on the family payroll like MacDonald has already done with some of his family including wife.

    I read somewhere, maybe this blog or some other blog, that the DUI lawyer’s father is also a lawyer and would have far more appropriate credentials than this guy. I can’t recall for sure so don’t hold me to that.

    I know it is popular to bash MacDonald, but he is not so stupid as to use this lawsuit as an opportunity to line a buddy’s pockets, with so much at stake; that’s way too risky when he could go after a more appropriate lawyer. It’s more likely that there is some sort of connection and he’s the only lawyer willing to pull the trigger, hoping that they defendants would give in before it went to trial. It is a magnanimous, colossal mistake on every level for the church.

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  79. Headless Unicorn Guy: I am very familiar with the Fourth Doctor. In my area the local PBS station used to run Doctor Who every Saturday, and the Whovians were well-represented in their fundraisers. And the Doctor was always the Fourth Doctor, Hat, Scarf, Jellybabies and all.

    Then a few years back they stopped to concentrate on Social Justice and Highbrow stuff, and they’ve been struggling ever since.

    My favorite Dr. Who / Tom Baker line comes from an episode where some malevolent alien life form is renting about how he’s hell-bent on takeover of the cosmos and universal domination. Baker waves airily and says, “Yes, yes, I’ve heard it all before. You megalomaniacs are all alike!” 🙂

    The early Doctor Who did not take itself seriously. It was campy and cheeky, and it had lousy production values (and that was part of its charm). This recent iteration — meh.

    (Commenting on this because I literally have no earthly clue who James MacDonald is, so I cannot add anything substantive to the conversation.)

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  80. “Do you think he’s posted my mug on his target practice wall? If so, could whoever is there save it? I will put it on eBay and give the proceeds to TED, wives and Roys.”

    HMMMM . . .

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  81. Thanks to Ex Harvest Member (Jessica) @ex_harvest, who is following this new “Elder Statement of Record” closely. Her Twitter feed is where I found this information.

    Apparently, not all elders have signed it as of this evening 12/19/18. This appears to be a tactic to identify elders who will “unconditional[ly]” and “unequivocally” follow James MacDonald’s orders and flush out those elders who have a conscience (those who refuse to sign this nauseating and unbiblical statement).

    https://www.harvestbiblechapel.org/2018/12/18/elder-statement-of-record/

    Elder Statement of Record
    December 18, 2018
    To Ron Duitsman, Elder Board Chairman:

    We, the Elders of Harvest Bible Chapel, express our appreciation and unconditional support for our Senior Pastor, James MacDonald.

    Pastor James has led our church in an exemplary manner. He has modeled humility, courage and generosity. Pastor James is quick to forgive and to seek forgiveness. He welcomes accountability into his life. We are grateful that he invites dissenting viewpoints into Elder decision making processes. We regularly witness how he extends grace to those who have fallen or even those who have betrayed him. Because of Pastor James, each of us are better men, husbands and fathers, and more devoted followers of Jesus.

    As we stand at the forefront of the Closer campaign, which will expand the ministry of our church into the next generation, we unequivocally support our Senior Pastor. We thank him, Kathy, and their family for working tirelessly, sacrificing so much, never giving up, and always fighting for our church and for the gospel. We stand with Pastor James and count it a privilege to serve alongside of him as a fellow Elder.

    [see links for signatories]

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  82. He sounds like a psychopath! No wonder all these men are afraid of him. He has everything they do not have. Money, connections, etc. God will not be mocked, let him reap what he has sown. How someone can preach God’s word for a living and act this way is beyond me. Look at Bill Hybels, he ran Willow Creek for 42 years and obviously didn’t fear the Lord who he taught about. The list goes on of people like this. What has happened to God’s church?

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  83. Mark Aderholt indicted:

    https://www.star-telegram.com/news/local/crime/article223337900.html

    “The missionary arm of the Southern Baptist Convention knew about the allegations against Aderholt in 2007…The International Mission Board (IMB) did not report the allegations to authorities.”

    “Miller hopes other victims of sexual assault within their churches will gain courage through her story and she hopes the Southern Baptist Convention will finally step up to support survivors. ‘The Southern Baptist Convention specifically promised to take abuse more seriously,’ she said. ‘They are taking steps to do that, but it’s mainly more of an image protection. They haven’t reached out to me as a victim or survivor to see how they could help’…They haven’t responded to her emails either.”

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  84. Song of Joy: Thanks to Ex Harvest Member (Jessica) @ex_harvest, who is following this new “Elder Statement of Record” closely. Her Twitter feed is where I found this information.

    Apparently, not all elders have signed it as of this evening 12/19/18. This appears to be a tactic to identify elders who will “unconditional[ly]” and “unequivocally” follow James MacDonald’s orders

    A Loyalty Test.
    Like that one pastor who would hand one of his elders a glass of poison and order him to drink it.

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  85. HIEL MCDONALD!!!!! HIEL MCDONALD!!!!! THE FUROR IS INFALLIBLE!!!!! man that Elder statement of Record was creepy reminds me of something straight out of The Nuremberg Rallies of the 1930s

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  86. Seems like this should be the final straw for MacDonald. How could the Elder board ever think it was biblical to sue some blogger??? Elephant’s Debt had been dormant for some time so why go after them. But as we all know JMac has full control of Harvest so he does what he wants. Guess he had a little temper tantrum.

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  87. “We the elders of harvest bible chapel Express our appreciation and UNCONDITIONAL SUPPORT for our senior pastor James McDonald”……think about that and let it sink in…UNCONDITIONAL SUPPORT….UNCONDITIONAL SUPPORT….that tells you all you need to know, The Elders are blind puppets, so it doesn’t matter to them if Jmac is unbiblical or not…THEY SUPPORT HIM UNCONDITIONALLY.

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  88. Max,

    That just backs up my point, it isn’t that the SBC doesn’t have any means to deal with these people, it is that they are failing in their duty to.

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  89. Song of Joy:
    Thanks to Ex Harvest Member (Jessica) @ex_harvest, who is following this new “Elder Statement of Record” closely.Her Twitter feed is where I found this information.

    Apparently, not all elders have signed it as of this evening 12/19/18. This appears to be a tactic to identify elders who will “unconditional[ly]” and “unequivocally” follow James MacDonald’s orders and flush out those elders who have a conscience (those who refuse to sign this nauseating and unbiblical statement).

    https://www.harvestbiblechapel.org/2018/12/18/elder-statement-of-record/

    Elder Statement of Record
    December 18, 2018
    To Ron Duitsman, Elder Board Chairman:

    We, the Elders of Harvest Bible Chapel, express our appreciation and unconditional support for our Senior Pastor, James MacDonald.

    Pastor James has led our church in an exemplary manner. He has modeled humility, courage and generosity. Pastor James is quick to forgive and to seek forgiveness. He welcomes accountability into his life. We are grateful that he invites dissenting viewpoints into Elder decision making processes. We regularly witness how he extends grace to those who have fallen or even those who have betrayed him. Because of Pastor James, each of us are better men, husbands and fathers, and more devoted followers of Jesus.

    As we stand at the forefront of the Closer campaign, which will expand the ministry of our church into the next generation, we unequivocally support our Senior Pastor. We thank him, Kathy, and their family for working tirelessly, sacrificing so much, never giving up, and always fighting for our church and for the gospel. We stand with Pastor James and count it a privilege to serve alongside of him as a fellow Elder.

    [see links for signatories]

    This is absolutely appalling! Anyone who would sign that needs to get their head checked out! Sorry elders, I have “unconditional support” for only One—my Jesus! You have totally disqualified yourselves by exalting a man over God! I hope whoever is left in their congregations read this, realize the danger there and pack up and hit the road. MacDonald is nothing more than a narcissistic megalomaniac! Anybody want any Kool-Aid?

    “Who is more foolish? The fool, or the fool that follows him?” -Obi-Wan Kenobi

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  90. Dan keller:
    “We the elders of harvest bible chapel Express our appreciation and UNCONDITIONAL SUPPORT for our senior pastor James McDonald”……think about that and let it sink in…UNCONDITIONAL SUPPORT….UNCONDITIONAL SUPPORT….that tells you all you need to know, The Elders are blind puppets, so it doesn’t matter to them if Jmac is unbiblical or not…THEY SUPPORT HIM UNCONDITIONALLY.

    I thought the bit about forgiving even those who “betrayed” him was a bit revealing too — it seems to suggest that the elders owe loyalty to the man.

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  91. Samuel Conner: The general consensus of opinion that I have encountered online, of those not a priori hostile to TED, seems to be that the suit does not have a lot of merit. It may be that a skilled defamation litigator would be reluctant to take on a case that he considered unlikely to be winnable. If, has been suggested, this is actually essentially a SLAPP, it might not really need a skilled litigator to run up the defendants’ legal bills and pressure them to settle on terms favorable to the plaintiffs.

    Good points. SLAPP is quite a possibility. If you look at the recent Elephant’s Debt post:

    https://theelephantsdebt.com/2018/12/19/litigation-update-emergency-no-emergency-emergency-no-emergency/

    You will sings of this. Sadly it is increasing the legal costs for the defendants. If this MacDonald’s/HBC intent it is the real “Christian” way to bully into silence.

    I use to hear his program on the radio and when I was travelling or lawn cutting you wouldn’t think he would be like this but you never know. People can teach one thing and practice another.

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  92. Dan keller: “We the elders of harvest bible chapel Express our appreciation and UNCONDITIONAL SUPPORT for our senior pastor James McDonald”……think about that and let it sink in…UNCONDITIONAL SUPPORT….UNCONDITIONAL SUPPORT….that tells you all you need to know

    They have taken JMac’s Mark on both forehead AND right hand.
    “Every Knee Shall Bow,
    Every Tongue Confess,
    Jimmy Mac Is LOOOOOORD!”

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  93. Steve240: I use to hear his program on the radio and when I was travelling or lawn cutting you wouldn’t think he would be like this but you never know.

    You only heard the Angel of Light mask.

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  94. Anonymous Grandma: Agreed. Which is why I believe this lawsuit isn’t intended ever to go to court. It’s meant (in my personal opinion and best guess) to cause so much emotional and financial hardship to the defendants that they will eventually agree to settle out of court, promising their future silence in exchange for the dropping of all financial claims against them, and wrapping up everything with an all-encompassing non-disclosure agreement

    DON’T DO IT. Please!

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  95. Eagle’s been covering the whole HBC mess and things are getting pretty lively in the comment threads. HBC Sock Puppets/Truth Squads rang in trolling his coverage; looks like he now has TWO regular Trolls.

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  96. Anonymous Grandma: Which is why I believe this lawsuit isn’t intended ever to go to court. It’s meant (in my personal opinion and best guess) to cause so much emotional and financial hardship to the defendants that they will eventually agree to settle out of court, promising their future silence in exchange for the dropping of all financial claims against them, and wrapping up everything with an all-encompassing non-disclosure agreement.

    At which point, the Godly Sociopath leans over and piously ays to the defendants “I. WIN.”

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