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87 Responses

  1. Babylon's Dread says:

    Greetings from 35k feet …

  2. Michael says:


    You need to finish watching those Christian Zionist videos I posted for you… 🙂

  3. pastor guru says:

    Can someone (Michael) tell me what happened to Reuven and why he left the faith?

    Wasn’t he a mod here a while back?

  4. Michael says:

    I love Reuben and he is my friend.
    The bottom line is that he has simply seen too much abuse without consequence for abusers in the church.
    If he wants to comment further he will.
    He was a moderator here and was a great help to me.
    He remains my friend.
    That will be the last word on the subject here.

  5. Babylon's Dread says:

    Mark Driscoll is in that category of people that have no empathy for others in fact others do not exist. The barometer of justice is how MD is impacted. He alone matters. Celebrity Christianity is uniquely suited to carry such characters because they shield themselves in the message in a variety of ways. Jesus is useful to such people because Jesus offers so many motif’s that work, the defiant agent of renewal, the misunderstood mystic, the persecuted servant and the resurrected victor. None of these need to impact MD they just need to be in the arsenal.

    Now he is turning the body count into a crucifying mob of fickle followers. Meanwhile MD has overcome Judas, Pilate, Herod, Caiaphas and soon will be on his mission.

    Had there been any hint of repentance there might be hope but this story only has a stricken savior, It reminds me of the enthronement of Todd Bentley in Lakeland when he pronounced that the evening had as it’s purpose to release a Ps.2 anointing. Messiahs continue to arise for us.

  6. Michael says:


    Well said…

  7. Babylon's Dread says:

    The error of the eldership at Mars Hill was not releasing their discipline post-exit. They should have made public their findings and their intended discipline from which he fled. This reminds me of NCAA coaches who resign and the school and the athletes suffer the consequences while the coach goes on to other jobs.

    Tie the probation to the coaches instead of the schools and you will have discipline. As soon as Morris anointed MD as having suffered the worn out claim of a church that “shoots the wounded” he was clear to start anew.

    I suggest we dub Mark Driscoll as “Shooter” from now on… Shooter Driscoll … yes that works. Ok this stuff found my grumpiness.

  8. WenatcheeTheHatchet says:

    at the risk of throwing in a tag, published an analysis of the narrative strands from the Thrive presentation

  9. Michael says:


    My apologies…I was going to put it up and got distracted.

  10. EricL says:

    The ISIS persecution link was hard to finish. Devastating.

    I was going to read the 2nd link, but something distracted me…

    I found the Olson link thought-provoking, especially his last 2 paragraphs about “nones” still being spiritual and then his veering into the benefits denominations have brought to our society and how that will be hard to sustain if we keep heading toward independent churches.

  11. Michael says:


    Thanks again for the help this week.

  12. filbertz says:

    it is ironically fitting that the short attention span link follows the ISIS link

  13. Em says:

    the atrocities of ISIS make me once again wonder how anyone could say that there is no Satan… these acts are beyond the depravity of man… beyond animals and they say that they are doing Allah’s work? But i’d like to think i could drive a tent peg thru the head of any one of them… Judges 4:21

  14. Surfer51 says:

    “Who would Jesus execute?”

    For that matter, “who would Jesus waterboard?”

    And of course the classic, “WWJD.”

  15. Jim says:

    Two links to the same anti death penalty article stand in stark contrast to the soul-twisting isis piece. Who among us doesn’t want them dead?

    I’m against the death penalty in the US because our “justice” system is broken, but have no problem with the logic behind being anti abortion and in favor or capital punishment. The author (and NT Wright) can’t distinguish between an innocent unborn child and a murderer?

  16. em says:

    water boarding isn’t His method – ever
    whom the Lord loves He chastens, but … Now He is on operation rescue – His only “ops” are rescues

    but the day comes….

    “Who would Jesus execute?”

    “And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.” from Rev 19

    sometimes this is a comforting verse…

    tonight – “Lord have mercy”

  17. em says:

    “I’m against the death penalty in the US because our “justice” system is broken” yes, but only because of this… executing 10 and hoping the law of averages bring justice isn’t what God intended

  18. Anne says:

    I have been wondering- is this true according to most commonly accepted Christian belief? If an unborn dies, don’t they automatically go to heaven? When an adult is killed the opportunity to repent has ended?

  19. Michael says:

    Just a quick note…I post links that are food for thought, not necessarily ones that I agree with.

  20. Michael says:


    Most Christians believe that infants that die go to heaven.
    Some Calvinists would say that elect babies go to heaven.

    Very few Protestant Christians believe in post mortem opportunities to repent.

    It’s this life, then the judgement.

  21. I am against the death penalty and I am anti war, but I do know who Jesus would execute … all those who have rejected him at the end of times.

  22. Alex says:

    Reuben has “left the faith” so much as he’s left what you call the constructs that have become the Idol of “faith” to many.

    Much of the organized “church” is probably actually the anti-christ.

  23. Alex says:

    …it certainly matches the descriptions of that metaphor. It takes the place of christ if people’s lives in the form of a Pastor/Guru who takes on the “god” persona…and then the worship and “faith” is really a faith in the Pastor/Guru and Leaders of the particular Sect…and the Gurus and Sect are “god” and the “faith”.

    That’s what Reuben has left. Not convinced he’s left the true faith…in fact, I’m pretty certain he hasn’t. He’s probably more in tune with the real Jesus now than when he was a Calvary Chapel assistant pastor.

  24. Alex says:

    Ask yourself this question and then answer honestly:

    What is the dynamic of today’s “church”?

    The Pastor/Guru assumes a place of “specially anointed” and “closer to God!” than the rest of us, correct?

    That is the truth of the perception that is created and sold…and accepted and followed.

    These Pastors/Gurus are put up on a stage, esteemed as being “special” and more spiritual than the rest of us…and the masses look to them as the personification of “god”…

    …and the followers worship at the altar of that Idol/Image of “god”…and it is a False Idol.

  25. Alex says:

    THAT is the message I hope to convey in my Deconstruction of the Mythology of today’s “church” and Pastor/Guru-Centric Cults.

    You are not worshipping Jesus, you are worshipping a False Idol and you’ve bought into a Cult Anti-Christ Construct.

    You don’t need a Pastor/Guru and a church construct…you need “God” and Jesus…and “God” is easily accessible outside those cult church walls.

    Your Conscience and Reason and “God”‘s Spirit will guide you.

    The bible contains some big truths, but isn’t “100% perfect!”. Love your Neighbor. Love God. Don’t be a doosh. Sowing and Reaping Principle is a very real Dynamic in this life. There are consequences to your actions and choices and inactions, etc.

  26. Alex says:

    Be honest and answer this question:

    What is the dynamic of church attendance and giving? Has it NOT been sold to you as “well, if you aren’t attending church regularly and giving money to the church and supporting the ‘ministry’…well, you aren’t walking with god and you aren’t pleasing god!”

    True as gravity. That is the dynamic that is sold like a Time-Share.

    Your “salvation” hinges on your attendance, loyalty to the “ministry” and your support financially and with labor etc.

    You are “building the MINISTRY of the lord!”

    No, you are supporting a false construct and worshipping at the altar of a Cult-of-Personality and Family Business….

  27. Josh The Baptist says:

    “The Pastor/Guru assumes a place of “specially anointed” and “closer to God!” than the rest of us, correct?”


  28. Josh The Baptist says:

    You are just going to the wrong church. I’d say a good 90% of Christian churches have pastors who are true servants.

  29. Bob says:


    I find your “deconstruction” to be just that, destroying and not building.

    I find most people want to be part of something bigger than themselves, I believe we all want value and to be valued. Religions, organizations, corporations, social networks and even twitters allow the individual to be a part of something big and they perceive some sort of value or they would not participate in them.

    When someone mentioned Reuben has “lost the faith” I thought to myself, “did he lose the faith in God and the Messiah Jesus or was it something else?” If it is the latter then he didn’t “lose” the faith at all and just grew tired of the human interaction of his church institution and perceived little value in its association. But, if he lost his faith in god and Messiah Jesus, then that is another issue completely.

    Alex, you quest to destroy, nor deconstruct the faith of others in men and institutions is an edged sword. You may be right in many of your assumptions, but to leave people empty simply puts them in the danger Jesus taught about when a house is swept clean of a demon.

    It is very easy to “join” the company whose task is to scape a property clean and not care about what is built in its place. Are such people really helping and benefiting others or are they leaving an empty place to be filled with a greater evil?

  30. Josh The Baptist says:

    Reuben’s quote was from another thread. He said he would no longer be called Christian. He said “we” hate him, and “we” hate Jesus, too.

    He’s been barreling down that road for quite a while though. Hope he finds peace outside the church that he never found within it. When he finds that mythical group of perfect, righteous people, maybe he’ll point those out as well.

  31. Alex says:

    Very interesting info coming in.

    Did Chuck Smith and Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa lie to the Idaho Court in the Iglesias Child Molestation lawsuit?

    Sources claiming to be from Calvary Chapel are alleging that Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa, Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa-controlled entities and Chuck Smith “disaffiliated” and defrocked James Flanders….prior to Chuck Smith’s and Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa’s testimony to the Idaho Court….

  32. Alex says:

    …or was it after the testimony to the Idaho Court?

    Hmm…someone needs to investigate this matter.

  33. Alex says:

    Perjury is still a crime, no?

    I wonder if the lawyers representing Calvary Chapel can be brought before the Bar?

  34. Alex says:

    Michael, what date do your sources claim that Chuck Smith and Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa and CCCM controlled entities “defrocked” and “disaffiliated” James Flanders and Calvary Chapel Emerald Coast?

  35. Josh The Baptist says:

    This looks bad for Chuck. He may have to serve time for this.

  36. Alex says:

    Paging Tim Kosnoff, paging Tim Kosnoff! I think you and the Idaho Court and the CC Molestation Victims are the victims of Perjury….

  37. Alex says:

    Looks bad for Chuck’s assets and for Chuck’s legal team who may have lied to the Court…

  38. Alex says:

    ….or rather, Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa’s assets or whatever assets end up getting split up in the Smith family lawsuit.

  39. Michael says:


    What I’m being told is that he chose to disaffiliate in 2009.
    This would indicate to me that there was something he was going to get hung for and left.
    I haven’t put a lot of time into this, so these aren’t hills I would die on.

  40. Alex says:

    He claimed he was an official Calvary Chapel at least until August of 2011 so that version you were given doesn’t pass the smell test.

  41. Alex says:

    I think Kosnoff might have a field-day with this and he should.

  42. Alex says:

    How do you disaffiliate yourself in 2009 and then still claim to be an official Calvary Chapel as recent as August 2011 (and probably even more recently…that’s just what I can confirm so far)?

    Doesn’t make sense.

    Seems that the info I’ve heard that Calvary Chapel forced a defrocking and disaffiliation from Calvary Chapel is the truth….and that Flanders kept claiming the name much longer…

  43. Alex says:

    The Murder didn’t happen until 2011…why would he have been kicked out in 2009?

  44. Alex says:

    Heck, for all we know Calvary Chapel Emerald Coast is still an official Calvary Chapel if Chuck Smith wasn’t lying and didn’t disaffiliate him and defrock him and his CC franchise.

    The Corporate records online list them as “Calvary Chapel” and “active” and James Flanders is the CEO

  45. Kevin H says:

    “This looks bad for Chuck. He may have to serve time for this.”

    Josh – I think God just told Chuck that when Alex passes on from this world that Chuck needs to take on Alex as a roommate at his mansion for the first 100 years. 🙂

  46. Michael says:


    It’s not unusual for disaffiliated pastors to hand onto the brand as long as possible.
    As I said, I haven’t spent any time on this case, so I’m not going to make statement I have no evidence for.

    My guts say that this guy was trouble for a long time and it started catching up with him in 2009.

  47. Josh The Baptist says:

    Ned Flanders is the CEO of CC Springfield.

  48. Michael says:

    All that disaffiliation means is that you are no longer on the data base of approved franchises.

    If memory serves me correctly this was around the same time that CCCM was trying to get rid of CCOF…so followup would have been an issue.

  49. Alex says:

    “It’s not unusual for disaffiliated pastors to hand onto the brand as long as possible.”

    Correct, which means he was FORCED out.

  50. Alex says:

    …Michael, you’re participating in a Lie with your ‘he voluntarily disaffiliated’…

  51. Josh The Baptist says:

    Kev – 🙂

  52. em says:

    people, us of the masses (small ‘m’) look for leadership – always have, that’s why our Lord calls us sheep and our leaders “shepherds”

    the Bible (capital ‘B’) doesn’t “contain some big truths” – it trumps every other book ever compiled – the mind of God, Himself… that’s a fact! – those who’ve distorted it for their own purposes are going to be in trouble when they meet the Author

    just sayin… i’m giving up pondering… heard Hillary Clinton say she ponders… when did it become an “in” word?

  53. Josh The Baptist says:

    Em – Amen.

    And I think Hillary stole “ponders” from you 🙂

  54. Alex says:

    “it trumps every other book ever compiled – the mind of God, Himself… that’s a fact! ”

    Then “god” is cool with Slavery and Polygamy as well as sex-slaves/concubines. Good to know…

  55. Alex says:

    Heck, maybe Flanders was right about the bible….maybe his bigamy and bedding down Marie Carlson with his wife’s knowledge is “god” and biblical…it was certainly “god” and biblical in the bible….

  56. Michael says:


    I’m not participating in anything.
    The info I have is that he was no longer a CC as of 2009.
    I said already that my guess would be that he was going out one way or the other.
    His disaffiliation wouldn’t change the corporate records…he would be responsible for that.
    I simply don’t have any documentation on the guy at all and I haven’t pursued any.
    When I don’t have the full information, I can’t make statements except by speculation.

  57. Josh The Baptist says:

    God is also cool with Alex not understanding the bible.

  58. Alex says:

    That’s the reality of the “bible is god’s mind!” Crowd.

    If you really believe that…then you are forced to dance around or to defend some very atrocious things…things you would said are evil today.

  59. Alex says:

    That’s probably enough Truth for this morning…I’m sure I’ve poke the hornet’s nest with all that truth and candor and non-b.s.

  60. Josh The Baptist says:

    I make no apologies for God, but we’ve been through this.

  61. Alex says:

    Hey, pick and choose whatever you want…everyone does.

  62. Josh The Baptist says:

    I pick and choose the whole thing. You don’t like most of it. I get that.

  63. Josh The Baptist says:

    And hey, you are in the majority. The vast majority of people don’t like very much of the bible.

  64. Alex says:

    “And hey, you are in the majority. The vast majority of people don’t like very much of the bible.”

    No, that is incorrect, the vast majority, something like 70%, claim to believe the bible and self-profess as “Christians” in the US…though that number is declining.

    You talk to this 70% and most are not very bright, don’t have a clue as to what “the bible” actually says all the way through…and most claim some Sect and Guru as their “god” and their “bible”

  65. Michael says:

    This is going nowhere…let’s give it a rest.

  66. Alex says:

    Nearly every “Christian” I discuss the bible with is shocked when i quote chapter and verse from the “bible” that they never knew was there…stuff like condoning and actually promoting Slavery, Sex Slaves/Concubines, Multiple Wives…executing your children with stones, slaughtering the infants of your enemy…all commands and laws “given by god through his prophet!” etc.

    ….and then the lying and spinning begins…and supposedly, god “hates” liars according to the same bible….

  67. Josh The Baptist says:

    That’s the US, Muslims, Hindus, and guys like you, the world over don’t like the bible. You are no special snowflake in that area.

  68. Josh The Baptist says:

    Yeah, you’ve said that a few times.

  69. Josh The Baptist says:

    How come someone can make dozens of posts deconstructing the Bible, the faith, whatever…but the moment someone responds with – “Hey, I believe the Bible”, it’s time to shut down the conversation?

  70. Michael says:


    It’s an endless loop that has been replicated many times already.
    It solves nothing and the strife continues unabated.
    He’s not going to convince you, you are not going to convince him.
    I see no profit in continuing anything where the outcome is nothing but strife.

  71. Josh The Baptist says:

    Seriously? Hmm. Alright.

  72. Jim says:

    I generally think that Alex is a special snowflake.

    just sayin’…

  73. Michael says:


    I’m missing your point.
    What good comes from you and Alex arguing all day?
    Who gets edified or strengthened?

    It simply distracts from every other conversation on the blog.

  74. Josh The Baptist says:

    It is my voice that you repress, and Alex’s that you nurture. I’m not here much anymore, so I doubt I’m distracting from too many conversations.

    Alex repeats his stuff ad-nauseum about the bible being untrue, etc. It goes unchallenged.

    I respond with simple, non-vitriolic affirmations of my belief in scripture, and it’s “Hey, this is going nowhere.” Just kind of odd.

    And to be clear, I like Alex. He gets hung on things (to the extreme), and says some things I find reprehensible, but in general, I want good things for him. Nothing personal there.

  75. Michael says:

    Now I’m repressive.

    Good Lord…
    Have at it Josh…challenge away.

  76. Michael says:

    By the way, I was addressing both of you, not just you.

  77. Josh The Baptist says:

    I also said nurturing, so there’s that.

  78. Bob says:


    Here’s what I like about Michael, he does “deconstruct,” and not “destruct,” while Alex actually does the reverse. Michael does critique, go after, swagger more than a bit, but he always adds something and points people back to God and Messiah (Christ for the Greek thinkers). He doesn’t clean house, scrape off the lot and leave nothing in its place. Voids are always filled with something and I just keep reading Alex creating voids or empty lots.

    I have no problem with people who want to argue against any for of religion or belief system, but it always seems they don’t have anything to fill the void andemptiness they leave behind. At all levels in life the world is filled with examples of such behavior and I would bet all have been left with an empty void at some point in time by such behavior.

    Alex just seems to me to be a destroyer and not really a “deconstructer” in all his writings and I agree with Michael that unless some positive thing is added why flog the readers with the same stuff.

  79. Alex says:

    Josh, I am not directing any of that at you personally. You have stated and defended your positions well many times.

    Out of respect for Michael, I’ll let it drop and I don’t wish (you Josh) any ill will and I think you are sincere and I think you’re generally a good dude on top of that. I just have some major disagreements, but it’s not personal.

    I’ve got bigger fish to fry so I’ll resume sending out tweet-links of the Calvary Chapel Pastor arrested for murder to all the Calvary Chapels on twitter as well as all the Gurus and Leaders associated with CC or friends of CC.

  80. Michael says:


    I’m not nurturing anybody.
    I was working on todays article, getting help with tomorrows article, taking texts from people and interjecting in this thread where I could.
    I saw it heading south and thought it best to call it.

    I spent hours getting this article together and it was a waste of time.

  81. Alex says:

    I had one telling response so far from a Calvary Baptist church that I mistook for an “official” Calvary Chapel….they were polite but made if VERY CLEAR they wanted NOTHING TO DO with Calvary Chapel’s Bad Brand….

  82. Michael says:

    Todays article is “biblical” and encouraging I hope…and it’s being pretty much ignored.
    I think I’m done for the day.

  83. Josh The Baptist says:

    Alex, if I lived in Idaho, you and I would get together and make fun of nerds. It’d be a blast 🙂

  84. Alex says:

    Josh, I know we’d be good friends 🙂 I really do like you and respect you despite some disagreements (that really are not important, just philosophical/theological).

  85. Josh The Baptist says:

    I’d make sure you weren’t armed before I took up one of the arguments in person.

  86. Josh The Baptist says:

    Also, if I lived in Idaho, I’d jump off a bridge.

  87. Alex says:

    Yes, yes you would 🙂

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