"As He spoke these things, many came to believe in Him. So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.”
John 8:30-32 (NASB)
TWW Gals With Pastor Wade Burleson
We are bidding adieu to the old and looking forward to the New Year with great anticipation. Our tradition here at TWW is to highlight what we consider to be our TOP TEN posts of the year. Each of these articles garnered considerable commentary, and we are so grateful for our growing readership!
It is our loyal TWW family that inspires us to research the topics we feature here. Some of these ideas even originate with our readers who contact us by email or phone. We hope and pray that this forum is making a difference.
We will work our way up to what we consider to be the Number One post for 2011 and then throw in a few “honorable mentions”.
Here we go…
10. When Pastoral Care Means Taking Care of the Pastor (link)
Dee summarized what appears to be one of the overarching problems in 21st century Christendom. Have you noticed a trend where pastors want to be served by the congregation, rather than to serve the flock as they have been instructed to do in the New Testament? Authoritarianism is on the rise as pastors elevate themselves above the flock. It is unbiblical, and we will continue to expose this trend in the New Year.
9. Welcome Emmanuel! (link)
In stark contrast to authoritarian leadership, Dee wrote a post about our recent visit to Enid, Oklahoma, where we observed a man who exemplifies the role of pastor according to God’s Holy Word. Pastor Wade Burleson of Emmanuel Baptist Church has become a dear friend, and we believe that if more pastors would shepherd their flocks as he does, Christendom would explode with new believers and Christians would become more passionate in their walk with Christ.
8. What Are Family Integrated Churches (FIC)? (link)
Deb described the FIC model and explained how the National Center of Family Integrated Churches (NCFIC) appears to be a driving force behind this concept. Although NCFIC churches seem to cater to the homeschooling community, a variation of the FIC model is being promoted by some mainstream churches that endorse "connecting church and home".
7. An Ultrasound of Abuse (link)
It is incredulous that there are conservative pastors who garner the respect of a multitude of Christians, yet they (and their followers) excuse abuse "for a season". Deb provided evidence from the mouths of John Piper and Paige Patterson. She applauded John Shore at Crosswalk.com who wrote an excellent post "Why Pastors Struggle With Confronting Domestic Violence" as well as a commenter who are "getting it". Why does the Christian community appear to tolerate violence against women more than the secular community does? It's a sad state of affairs for 21st century Christendom.
6. SGM and Gender Roles: Radically Redefining the word "Gospel" (link)
This was an extremely important post as Dee took to task those who misuse the term "gospel". Examples are: “Gospel marriage”, “Gospel parenting”, “Gospel lifestyle”, etc. She hammered the Calvinistas who love to use the descriptor to give credence to their narrow theological viewpoints. We will continue to expose this misapplication in the New Year.
5. Masculine Love in Acts 29 Churches (link)
Did you know that pastors of Acts 29 churches have to demonstrate a "masculine love" to their congregants? Deb quoted the following from the Acts 29 website: "We are not egalitarians and do believe that men should head their homes and male elders/pastors should lead their churches with masculine love like Jesus…" This mandate generated a lively discussion, as you might imagine.
4. Does the SBC Fear Women Pastors More Than Their Kids Getting Molested? (link)
Dee addressed the tremendous hypocrisy in the SBC, which throws out churches that hire women pastors while turning a blind eye to pedophilia. She provided numerous examples of SBC leaders who ignored child molestation done at the hands of those who are to protect the flock. Darrell Gilyard certainly comes to mind. Looks like the chickens have come home to roost in the SBC as membership and baptisms are in terrible decline.
3. The Earth is Fixed and the Sun Moves – Real Christians Believe It! (link)
This fascinating post written by Dee received the most comments in the history of TWW — over 500! Dee gave kudos to Dr. John Lennox, who inspired her to write this amusing article. Hopefully, it opened a few eyes to how ridiculous some Christians can be with their rigidity in certain positions such as creationism.
2. Sovereign Grace Ministries and the SBC – Is There A Merger in the Works? (link)
Ever since C.J. Mahaney spoke at the SBC Pastors Conference in 2010, we have wondered about the connection between the SBC and the smaller SGM "family of churches". As your TWW sleuths discovered in 2009, Mahaney and Sovereign Grace Ministries have given at least $100,000 EACH to Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. What's really going on here? Now that Mahaney's son-in-law has relocated his family to Louisville so he can earn an M.Div. degree at Mohler's seminary, we are even more intrigued… Guess the SGM Pastors College wasn't sufficient for theological training.
1. Breaking News: CJ Mahaney, the “Trendy” Calvinista, Temporarily Steps Down to Deal With Sin (link)
As 2011 demonstrated, the internet is indeed making a difference. When Brent Detwiler released his 600+ pages of documentation against Mahaney, C.J. "temporarily" stepped down, as explained in a blog post on the Cheap Seats website. Dee weighed in on this surprising development. However, last month Mahaney confessed at the SGM Pastors Conference that he regretted his decision, and his blog post has been removed by the SGM Board. The Washington Post Investigates Sovereign Grace Ministries (link) is a related post which highlighted serious problems within the SGM "family of churches".
These posts also received considerable commentary and are worthy of your perusal…
No Professional Counseling Advised – One Woman’s Sad Story (link)
Mark Dever – C.J. Mahaney's BFF (link)
Confessions of an SGM Pastor (link)
Russell Moore Tells Women to Stop Submitting to Men (link)
We fondly call 2011 "The Year of the Blogger" for obvious reasons, and we expect that the upcoming year will continue to demonstrate this new phenomenon, much to the chagrin of hyper-authoritarian leaders.
Hail to all truth sleuths, whether they are blogging from a secret location (like their mothers' basements) or whether they ARE THE MOMS like Dee and me who blog in designer clothes — NEVER underwear or bath robes! To whom it may concern, please make a New Year's resolution to retire that silly tirade – it has become so trite.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Lydia's Corner: Job 40:1-42:17 2 Corinthians 5:11-21 Psalm 45:1-17 Proverbs 22:14