Things I Think…

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40 Responses

  1. Ruth says:

    Re #3 when do you think it changed?

  2. Michael says:

    Ruth,

    I might be wrong…but the Trump era changed both the left and the right and the whole culture. Everything has become a zero sum game…and we all lose.

    Couple that with the frustration of never seeing real change or repentance…and we end up here…

  3. greg says:

    Michael,
    As it relates to “what happened” in the Jon Courson story….I believe it to be both. We are sinners and prone to sin, saved by the grace of God (if we have placed our faith in Jesus and the finished work of the cross). In Jon Courson’s case it is unrepentive sin, derailing the redemption and restoration that the bible teaches. The interesting thing about Jon is that for my 20 years in the fellowship the centerpiece of his teaching was to be “quick to repent” of our sin and be restored and move on. Teaching it and not living it is so much of what we see in today’s church (I use the term reluctantly)…. leadership. Many of our pastors have an agenda and at the end of the day it always gets in the way of God’s agenda until ultimately God will deal with it as He has at Applegate Christian Fellowship. As well, a system in many churches today that wants to willingly neglect what the bible says about having strong accountability measures in place for church leadership and why it is so very important. This neglect is birthed and driven by a pastors agenda, whatever that may be, that ultimately lead many to stumble and be lead away from the Lord. This system we now see in many fellowships and one that leads to the corruption in the church, that we see everywhere, is man made. We have the wrong system…we need God’s system. God help us.

  4. Reuben says:

    I agree the Trump era had a ton to do with it. Spiritual issues aside, social political economic ramifications are being felt worse every day. It’s making people uncontrollably angry. I still summarize this as “end stage capitalism”. “Both sides” are guilty in this. “Both sides” will not change. I have one major pet peeve in all the political talk from the right, Cortez, Sanders, and the like are not even close to actual Socialism, what I call socialism lite. None of them are Communists. If you put me in a room with any of the “leftists” in American Politics, we would find very little in common. But McCarthyism is ingrained in our culture, and when economics or politics gets scared of something the Left is doing, out comes the red scare, and this further polarized politics. It’s needless. Actual Socialism, or Communism simply can not happen in America.

  5. DavidM says:

    Regarding pastors being restored through a redemptive process, one person comes to mind. In the late ‘80’ or early ‘90’s, a fairly well-known pastor, Gordon MacDonald, from Massachusetts, had an affair with a woman in his church. He publicly confessed, stepped down, and, from what I understand, submitted himself to a process of restoration. He seemed to be truly broken. I think that is the missing ingredient in true restoration, that genuine brokenness. I know that in articles and books he has written extensively about his failure, not trying to hide it or brush it under the carpet. Should he have been restored to public ministry? That I do not know.

  6. pstrmike says:

    I don’t think we spend enough time teaching people of the importance of stewarding their own desires and passions. As Springsteen sang, “everybody’s got a hungry heart” and our hunger for things can bleed over from the spiritual to the material. If we do not have the self discipline—which is difficult to start and even more difficult to maintain—for self care and fulfillment in spiritual things, we will seek other avenues to attempt to find a sense of fulfillment, and often at other people’s expense. David, Bathsheba, and Uriah the Hittite are prime examples.

  7. Officerhoppy says:

    Having worked for and with Jon, traveled with him and ministered with him for 14 or so years, I can say that I believe his faith is real. I was there when his wife was killed and ministered in music at his daughter, Jessica’s memorial.

    So why did he fall?
    Here are some observations

    1) I don’t think Jon had a handle on the power and influence of his flesh. He spiritualized everything and erroneously believed that all a person had to do to overcome lust, depression, anxiety or whatever, just press into the Lord more. He had a substance abuse program called “One Step”. It was called that to counter the 12 step concept used by AA. When I was on staff, I was tasked with doing a lot of the counseling (though I was unqualified). Being a former cop and trained in the investigation of sexual crimes, several men were sent to me. I would work with the court system and supported the court programs required by the court system. Jon fought it. He believed that all a person needed to do was “Consider the old man died”. He and I went round and round on this and more than one offender, would step away from the court mandated program only to have a bench warrant issued for them. In one case, the offender became a repeat offender sexually abusing 3 young boys.

    2) Jon never fully confessed his sin. I read the book written by Jon’s nephew, Chas Smith “Blessed are the Band Robbers” too. The was pressure on the Courson children to be exceptional was great. Ironically, One of the Courson grand children became an exceptional bank robber. He (Danny) ended up in jail while both Ben and Jon ended up disgraced (though they both failed to fully admit it).

    3) Jon had risen to fame in a short period of time. He was also a young man in his lte 20’s. The power and fame dulled him to his own “flat side”. He was accused of having improper relations with his secretary. The accusation threatened to sink the ship and ruin his career. A thorough investigation was done by the elder of ACF with the assistance of 2 respected and capable pastors. A plan of restoration was established but Jon rejected the plan and stepped back into the pulpit and seized control of the reigns. He may not have been corrupted but he was certainly blinded by his own success and fame.

    There is more. But these are the most glaring.

    But I believed Jon had and still has today, a relationship with Christ. But he is blind to his own flat sides. Instead of dealing with them, he just moves on, never addressing them it spiritualizing everything.

    Just my thoughts

  8. Officerhoppy says:

    Pastor Mike
    While teaching these things is key, it’s time, IMO, leader stop talking and start modeling these principles.

    In Christianity, we do a lot of talking but not a while lot of acting.

  9. Michael says:

    Officerhoppy,

    Is it a blind spot or a seared conscience?

  10. Officerhoppy says:

    Michael
    I believe it started as a blind spot. But 30 or so years after the fact, it certainly may have become a seared conscience.

    As they say, you believe a lie long enough, you begin to believe it’s true. The same with his manipulation of situations. You do it long enough and become successful at controlling narratives, it becomes a pattern.

  11. pstrmike says:

    hoppy,

    I think we are just listening to the wrong voices.

    the masses put people on pedestals and those who ascend will do almost anything to stay there. They like the view too much.

  12. Officerhoppy says:

    Pstrmike
    Agreed. But you could say the same thing about many pastors. We know the scriptures, explain them, teach them, then request that others do them, while often times, we are the chief offenders. We don’t do them ourselves.

    We need leaders who explain and then do..imo

  13. pstrmike says:

    Exactly. I spent some time recently with 2 “pastors” that I walked away wondering if they are even called. Perhaps they were having a ‘bad day.” I don’t know.

    I’m realizing that the longer I teach, the less I want to do it. We are dealing with the most important things in a person’s life, that is, the framework of their relationship to God. We have to be careful to teach well and live well. Both are challenging.

    Pastors incur a stricter judgment, which I believe means there will be a pastor section in heaven. Another word for that section to me is hell.

    Our life here on earth is Purgatory, and my goal is to get set free from the pastor section of heaven and get promoted into general population.

  14. greg says:

    officer hoppy
    that is the obvious conclusion, the question is why do we no longer have to many pastors that are doers of the word and seemingly all types of pastors that are not interested in doing what they teach. Are we teaching and discipling young pastors the truth, such as Paul’s strong exhortation to Timothy in 1 Tim 4 and 5, to stay in the word and meditate on and to model it. Bad behavior is learned behavior and we are teaching are young pastors that gross lack of accountability is ok as long as we are putting butts in the seats and growing large churches…..its sickening

  15. Officerhoppy says:

    Greg
    Maybe for the same reason we no longer have statesmen among politicians.

  16. greg says:

    officer hoppy,
    all of this is the natural fruit of inviting God out of our government, our schools, our churches and our lives so we can be our own God’s and do what we think is right in our own sight and we will call it relativism and live happily ever after. Oh how we need revived hearts….

  17. Duane Arnold says:

    While I know there is a spiritual component to all of this, there also seems to be a complete disregard for ethical norms and standards. The lack of an ethical base has simply become more blatant in recent years…

  18. terry says:

    Greg wrote: the question is why do we no longer have to many pastors that are doers of the word and seemingly all types of pastors that are not interested in doing what they teach.

    This is a case of judging others with your own wicked heart. Do you really think we no longer have genuine pastors who are doers of the Word? Maybe your brush is too broad…

  19. pstrmike says:

    “The lack of an ethical base has simply become more blatant in recent years…”

    Yes. And the boldness grows in thinking they can get away with more. For me, ethics are a spiritual expression and the their disregard is symptomatic of a bigger problem.

  20. paige says:

    Long rant.

    I rarely look at blogs anymore, and do not post on social media, as I consider it a mine field…. But, as you can imagine, this sort of topic is ‘near and dear’ to my life, as one of the big time losers in a church culture drama similar to the Courson debacle. To this day, my family is destroyed by choices made long ago by leaders and parishioners alike, tho I am the designated blamee.

    Interestingly, no one has mentioned the pressures heaped on church leadership by parishioners nor the IMMENSE spiritual warfare that is an unmentioned piece of those who publicly proclaim salvation in Jesus Christ. It’s easy to blame the visible guy in front, and I certainly understand that one guy can cause an immense amount of far reaching damage to not only souls, but the reputation of the Gospel.

    In the case of my ex husband, the ONE person in Ashland , Oregon who could cause the most damage to the Gospel and to a vast crowd of people. where the Light had been powerfully proclaimed for a long time with GREAT effort, was unrelentingly targeted by dark forces until he went under. (I’ll get a boatload of crap for putting that in a public forum. I don’t care).

    I’m thinking we could all just look in the mirror and blame and work on that person. We are at WAR.

    I find it pathetic that Trump has to be mentioned in this conversation that has nothing to do with him, nor the political atmosphere that has been sick for a long time, long before the previous administration.. Geez.

    Anyhow…. I was long ago married to a simple man of faith, who had a good, though heart of flesh, like us all . He loved Jesus, loved people and loved the scriptures; He was full of the Spirt and gifted by the Spirit to proclaim the Gospel to the lost. For many years, he simply and creatively did that, with much fruit. . His style and mannerisms (and my hospitality) drew a very large number of people….
    Over time a “force” much larger than ourselves, education or skills, grew and grew and grew…It slowly distorted our lives until eventually it permanently crushed us.
    A great deal of the problems were from endless needy, pushy and neurotic people, lascivious women and demon possessed humans. There is only so much a plain, simple minded person can take without developing adaptive measures to escape the unrelenting pressures. Being famous was a death sentence. Those who used us up, then turned and devoured us and continue to trash us.

    I used to have to go grocery shopping in another town at night to avoid running in to people who didn’t give a crap about me or my kids, but only wanted to know, “is Pastor Andy here?”, so they could gush over him or ask him to solve some problem in their lives. He didn’t cause that.

    It’s a cultural and cumulative sickness. The exalting of a public person is sick. it’s Idolatry. I’ve watched it happen to some of the dear young pastors that I know. People eat away at your personal life and space, but in the desire to be obedient to the Lord, to be kind, to exhibit God’s love long past the time that you need a sabbatical, eventually extracts your sanity.

    I remember conversations about how to schedule the much needed vacations around how many Sunday’s we could be gone, as the financial buck stopped at the pastors desk. If the church knew he was gone, they wouldn’t show up, tithes wouldn’t be given and salaries couldn’t be paid…. the weight of the responsibilities for the church became unbearable. That wasn’t our fault.

    I remember the phone calls while on vacation from people who just had to talk only to Pastor Andy…or the phone calls from the church at 11pm from gals who’d talked long past closing and then didn’t have a key or know how to turn off the gym lights, and the endless invasion of personal space. I also remember the betrayal of trusted long time friends or people bailing at the last minute.

    NO ONE sitting in the pews has ANY IDEA of what it’s like. People see the teaching pastor that they love because he led them to salvation, but have no clue what goes on the other 22 hours of every day…. 24/7/365. Modern church culture is a sick devouring monster.

    I’m not making excuses. We are each responsible for our sins and will each give an account to the All Mighty…. Our own path is what we’re responsible for, not someone else.

    There were people who tried to confront my ex…including Michael… and saw the infamous ‘left foot of fellowship’ . There were recovering alcoholics who tried to talk to him about the obvious Twelve Steps, One step, whatever. . But for each confronter, there were 200 affirming and adoring faces and voices and overflowing letters in the mail, including the ones from the women who would happily welcome him into their home and bed.

    So I’m saying that it’s not that simple… it’s not what it seems…. it’s a much much larger issue, a SIN issue…for leaders AND attenders alike. Church culture is a blender and it’s impossible to sort out what’s left to identify the cause..

    I’ve known Jon Courson for 45 years. He’s always been kind to me. I know a lot of people who follow Jesus because of his preaching. Same for my ex. Both Solomon and Samson are prime Biblical examples of powerful leaders who knew the Lord, in person, no less, but blew it, caved to the flesh, taken down by power, wealth and lust. It would be helpful if he copped to his choices and be transparent, exhibiting the humility.

    I am incredibly sad for Tammy and Christie and Amanda and all the kids.They have paid an excruciating price for who they’re related to… Ben is a classic case of ‘the sins of the father’, but he can’t blame Jon. Ben is responsible before God for his own choices…as we all are. There are good men in his life trying to wake him up and turn him towards the light, but as long as the adoring masses affirm him, there won’t be change.

    And while I am pontificating and venting, I also think that modern preaching is lacking the preaching about hell and judgement, which is very real. . As my ex used to say, ‘I want to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable”. IMO we need some old time religion, with fear and trembling. and not the See’s Candy Version of the Scriptures. We need to be reminded that the Way is Narrow and FEW find it. We need to be reminded of the many times the phrase “make every effort” and ‘take every thought captive”. The problems lie not only with the preachers but the masses… as Michael has said for decades, as long at the crowds show up, things won’t change….But Judgment is coming. For all of us.

    God help us all to walk in the light, to stay fully in the totality of Scripture and to walk in fear and trembling of the Lord of Hosts.

  21. Michael says:

    Paige,

    Thank you.
    I almost wrote on some of the points you mentioned…and probably will do so soon.
    I hope you are well, my friend.

  22. storyguy15 says:

    At the end of the day everyone, in all positions, in any job or vocation is vulnerable to the corrupting nature of power. It’s not power itself that does it, but the lack of a sufficient character rooted in kindness and grounded in honest humility that can withstand the weight of it without losing oneself to the false narrative that says because I have power it means that I’m more important or indispensable to the cause. The truth is that any good work that brings about the redemptive work of Christ in the world (and thus in a person’s life) is always happening because the Spirit is already initiating that work. Any servant of Christ, even the most “anointed” is playing catch up to what He is already doing.

    There is no shortcut to the deep or long work that character building is when partnered with the Holy Spirit. Most, if not all us, should’ve never entered pulpit ministry until we were at least in our 40’s (or older) and had a much better grasp on the personal experience and reality of grace in our own lives and thus could project that grace into others in a way that free of hidden agendas or self-gratifying ego boosting. Power in the way of Jesus seems, at least as I understand it, is to use whatever limited influence we have to whomever He brings across our path, and proclaim and demonstrate in authentic ways His redemptive grace pouring and working into others. That doesn’t happen except by deeply learning that grace ourselves, which only comes via deep soul discovery/building in the sufferings of this life. I’ve lost a child, been passed up for promotions, known the grind of working seven days a week just to keep food on the table, struggle with health scares and… the list goes on for us all.

    No doubt that Jon is saved, and that Jesus loves him enough to go to Calvary’s cross just for him if that’s what it took. I have to believe that even the seared conscious is not beyond the work of a God who speaks into the lifeless chaos of darkness and proclaim “let there be”. The Courson’s misuse of power will have long ramifications for years to come (as mine has done). I believe God still wants to speak into the darkness and command forth His redemptive light in the person of Jesus Christ. I know that we will all come across those abused by the misuse of power. I pray we all continue to looks deep into the face of our loving Savior, ask regularly in humility “Lord is it I?”, and like Paul be able to say to one another in all sincerity, “as I have received from the Lord I deliver unto you”. Now that’s a power I’d like to see in our churches today.

  23. Greg enright says:

    Terry
    I did not say we did not have any pastors teaching and living out what they teach. Certainly there are some. I believe it naive for anyone to think we do not have a very large problem with many of our pastors and what they are teaching and living.. Our own community is not immune from multiple pastors who have fallen. I judge no one in this…God is perfectly able and willing. Neither to I turn a blind eye to the absolute carnage in our churches from the hypocrisy of many pastors. We are absolutely called in scripture to be good stewards (fruit inspectors…not judges unto condemnation) of our own body (church) that the little bit of Leven will not ultimately Leven the entire body….which by the way is happening all around us I am disappointed in Ben’s sin and Jon’s own sin in covering up for Ben…but I am not surprised…. we are sinners…many have and are stumbling over the debacle at applegate….not because of their unconfessed sin but because of the hypocrisy of what they teach and how they live…and then continuing to lie to us about it I make no apologies for calling them out publically….I and many others have repeatedly reached out to Jon and Ben privately to encourage them to repent…that healing might begin. They have never responded. Jon has said on his blog we will simply “outlive our critics” Wait…What!!!…can you show me anywhere in the bible that is taught!

  24. pstrmike says:

    paige,
    your experience is your own as is mine, even if they contradict.

    I grew up in a “give me that old time religion” type church. Hell fire and damnation preaching was the rule of the day. That and tithing. But it still didn’t keep the first three pastors in my life from transgressing in their own sins. But the people loved them because they were hellfire and damnationed into the Kingdom, (or so it seemed), and there was this vicarious association with what they perceived as some form of spiritual greatness. As I said earlier in this thread both the pastor and their adoring fans are to blame. Today it takes on even different forms as people would rather sit in their living room and call it church by watching their latest hero on live stream rather than getting involved in the life of the church. Something about a form of godliness????? I digress.

    I have little patience for the adoring fans that I have dealt with over the many years, neither can I listen to those who are like sponges absorbing as much of the attention and prai$e that those fans offer them. I’ve even suggest to a few that they move back to where they came from. So without retyping I’ll refer back to my 11:55 am post. Self care and spiritual disciplines are not the emphasis. But how can they be , when so many of these guys are working their ass off seven days a week trying to “stay ahead of the curve” and meet everyone’s expectations except those of their family and God’s. I refused to play that game and driving to the next town to go shopping is in my experience, a small price to pay so that I’m not “on” 24/7. Peace.

  25. Paige says:

    Thanks Pstrmike. It’s always a balance of course. I’ve just seem so much “covered by grace” preaching without the other side of the issue. I.e judgment. If nothing else, normal consequences. The diciest part is situations like Uriah, who suffer the devastating consequences of another’s choices. Totally agree with your earlier comment regarding the need to instruct and remind folks to deal with the day to day mundane issues and temptations of human life, and the practical application of scripture to normal life. I love Proverbs and Ecclesiastes for that very reason

  26. pstrmike says:

    Thanks Paige. I’m actually going to start teaching Ecclesiastes on Wednesday nights next week. I’m also shifting to the book of John on Sunday mornings and I’m hoping that those two books will be able to inform us on how to honor the Lord as we navigate this increasing difficult milieu that we live in. It’s always good to hear from you in spite of the fact that you’re posts can provoke me to mourn with you.

  27. Officerhoppy says:

    Paige
    As you know, after ACF, I pastored a church in Salem for 20 years. I knew what I was getting into when I took the church. My goal was the same as the sign on the side of my police car: to protect and serve. I was never burdened by the late night or weekend phone calls. I never built a church that was dependent upon me so I was never plagued by people seeing to talk only to me.

    Maybe I was an anomaly among pastors. But I felt like I was able to live a relatively normal life while I was at Salem.

    Or maybe they knew i was full of crap and went elsewhere for help!

    Good to hear from you

  28. Bob Sweat says:

    Hoppy,
    Although I never sat under your ministry, I believe you were the type of pastor you described above. I appreciate the fact that you reached out to me years ago when I came on this blog and bared my soul. You were even willing to allow me to come up to Salem and speak at your church. A man that you never met. I will always appreciate that.

    Those of you who know me understand the anger I have for pastors who refuse to step down from ministry due to moral failure. I have often wondered is it because they are fearful of not having any other way of making a living.

  29. Captain Kevin says:

    Bob: “I have often wondered is it because they are fearful of not having any other way of making a living.”

    After a guy has spent decades in ministry, I would think that’s a huge factor.

  30. Captain Kevin says:

    Hoppy: “ I never built a church that was dependent upon me so I was never plagued by people seeing to talk only to me.”

    I’d be interested to know what kinds of things you did or didn’t do/say to accomplish that.

  31. Jeff Thompson says:

    After a local pastor whom many in our congregation had ties to fell into moral failure, I preached on the issue. I had to wrestle with how it could happen to me and what I would do to try and ensure it doesn’t. If it’s helpful, here it is:

    http://gospelcity.ca/media/messages/why-and-how-pastors-fall/

  32. Michael says:

    Jeff,

    There’s some good stuff there…thank you.

  33. Officerhoppy says:

    Bob
    You da man!

    Kevin
    Let me give that some thought. I think it was more an attitude than anything.

  34. Paige says:

    Steve, yes, your personality and previous training in ministry and LEO career would be helpful attributes to avoid a ‘personality cult’ church situation.

    For us, we meant well… but we were completely ignorant and naive…The growth and needs were overwhelming…. We were completely unequipped and surrounded by people who wanted a piece. …

    Year after year, we would go to the pastors conferences at CCCM, only to hear yet another Bible study in Revelation by the big name guys…. NEVER practical instruction when so much was needed…. Not to mention the reality that Ashland is a unique place of fierce spiritual oppression. Looking back, I see we were too soft, and overly giving. We never ate a meal alone, always had a revolving front door and no personal boundaries. My youngest son, now 40, says he is now realizing that our ‘family lunches’ after church always included church people, and life was really never about our family.

    I’ve learned a lot in the last 22 years since the SHTF… I’ve read lots about Narcissistic Personality Disorder, abuse, addictive personality issues and Co-Dependency. All of those issues were factors for us. Of course, any form of psychological help was ver boten in those days, as you mentioned from your ACF/Applegate days… So we were condemned to never gain necessary tools to avoid being obliterated, then blamed and abandoned.

    All hindsight now. All needless suffering and ongoing damage an no closure.

    We were expected to be brain surgeons with crayons as tools. Lots of crazy demanding people out there…. lots of absurd expectations … lots of oblivion of the larger picture that the entire Bible portrays. It never ceases to amaze me how pertinent the Scriptures continue to be no matter how old I am or what’s going on. That’s where my only hope is and always will be. God of the Bible.

    Favorite pastor quote: “Life is hard. God is good. Never confuse the two”
    Rob Verdeyne.

  35. JD says:

    Confused it would read:
    “Life is good. God is hard.”
    A satanic deception keeping millions from the Kingdom of God.

    Many years ago my partner at work said that the motto on the side of the police car should read: “We Protect Our Own”. I believe this motto describes what some churches have adopted for themselves, which Mormons for one have effectively been engaged in continuously for years.

  36. Captain Kevin says:

    Jeff: “ As you grow into maturity in Christ, you become increasingly astounded by the goodness of God, but also by your own propensity towards sin. You see, growing in Christ likeness means seeing your own sinfulness with increasing clarity, resulting in increasing humility.”

    Thanks for sharing your message, Jeff!

  37. Officerhoppy says:

    Paige
    The lack of training or continuing education of/for pastors within the CC movement is why I stopped attending conferences.

    You are correct. Your experience at Ashland would probably have been a whole lot different if you had been adequately (or even slightly!) prepared for the demands and needs of ministry.

    To make matters worse, we CC pastors wore as a badge of honor, our low pay, busy-ness, constant lack of personal time, and our failure to set boundaries. Our marriages and families were sacrificed on the altar of ministry and, sadly in our minds, all for the glory of God.

    Thanks for your perspective friend

  38. Linn says:

    I missed all the good discussion yesterday because I was out taking care of errands. One thing that I think is very important to say is that there are a lot of good pastors out there who work hard, preach the Word, and love their congregations for decades without moving into the areas of adultery, iffy finances, or abuse of the sheep. Over almost 50 years as a Christian, I’ve only been in one church where the pastor was actually a serial adulterer. In the multi-staff church I have been in for the past 20 years, one elder admitted to marital infidelity. It was dealt with quickly, compassionately, and decisively (no more being an elder). Counseling was provided outside of the church to keep the level of a gossip to a minimum. All that to say that there are good people out there serving the Lord who need to be encouraged for all they are doing for the church.

    I think congregations need to tmake decisions early on about how they will deal with major ministerial sin. Certain structures, such as quick forgiveness and returning to the pulpit, pastoral dynasties, large megachurches, seem to make the problem worse.

    I do believe that if these pastors have really believed in the saving grace of Christ, they will be in heaven. Hebrews 11 lists a few folks (Lot, for example) that I personally would not consider paragons of virtue, but that’s the interesting thing about the Gospel. All are welcome if they truly believe (emphasis on the truly), but some will definitely have a bumpier journey than others. I think the church may be judged, though, for keeping these guys int he pulpit so long, knowing that they are only bringing shame to the cause of Christ.

  39. WenatcheeTheHatchet says:

    3 does seem to be the case … although a history of the generations of watchdog blogs sounds like a terrifyingly daunting prospect … and I wonder how generations in the age of internet even map.

    I think the most depressing thing I’ve noticed in relationship to 3 is that, for want of a better phrase, there’s a kind of brand entanglement between watchdog bloggers and their targets. Carl Trueman’s proposal years ago that a watchdog blog should have some in-person communion-based stakes before taking up the proverbial pen seemed wise (and, of course, that was the ethos I had in mind even if I “still” refuse to think of myself as a watchdog blogger).

    At the risk of naming a name via initials … I’m not sure where P&P fits into generations of watchdog blogs but I thought they were the Dale Gribble of the Christian blogosphere. 😉

  40. jtk says:

    It is awkward to receive from some of you, not personally knowing you, but it is also a great comfort for me to hear so many of your stories, warnings, exhortations and lessons from life that were earned in pain. Thank you.

    At mid life, I’m really counting the cost on a lot of things. I’ve saved to memory (and screenshot) quite a few of these things.

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