"...When He [Jesus] saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd." Matt 9:36

"Do not rob the poor, because he is poor... for the Lord will take up their case and plunder those who plunder them." Proverbs 22:22-23

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Mac Doesn't Like Councilman Referring to "Sorry Churches"

In Sunday night's sermon, Mac Brunson makes a strange reference to "city council members" who "criticize churches in this city and say they're 'sorry' ". Listen to the clip:


A couple of things very interesting about Mac's comments. Be sure to read my previous column to understand what prompted Mac to mention this certain "city council member".

- Why did Mac feel the need to condescendingly mention Davis' comments about sorry churches? Must be Councilman Davis stepped on Mac's toes and Mac feels that his church, FBC Jacksonville, is one of the "sorry churches" Davis referred to that are not doing their job in this city to help the needy but instead are falling all over themselves to send missionaries all over the world and build magnificent structures instead of helping the poor in their own city.

- Mac's reference to Davis' comments doesn't even fit the context of Mac's remarks about his constitutional freedom to speak out on issues. Davis' comment had absolutely ZERO to do with preachers' rights to speak freely on public issues. Davis said that if "sorry churches" would make ministry to the down and out in our city a priority then the local government wouldn't have to spend so much tax payer money. Sounds reasonable to me. Does Mac take issue with that? Of course not, because Mac already said that churches should "rise up" and do hurricane relief and not the federal government and Mac is already on the record as praying that the government doesn't get involved if we get hit by a hurricane. But Mac is a blowhard...he likes to say anything that will get the crowd riled up.

- Notice the response of the congregation and the hootin' and hollerin' after Mac makes his remark. Can you say "gullible sheep"?

- Interesting that Mac doesn't like the councilman being critical of the churches in this city. Readers I ask you, which is worse? A councilman in a city council meeting, in his hometown, calling for churches to do their job and minister to the poor...or a pastor, a PASTOR, traveling out of town and calling his church and possibly the entire city "a hotbed of legalism" where "everybody has a list of rules but no real relationship with Jesus Christ?" Yes, that's what Mac said about his own church and city last March. Click here to listen! Only unlike Davis, Mac said it behind our backs to preachers in North Carolina, and unlike Davis, Mac doesn't have the backbone to explain his comments, not even to his own church. Davis has given interviews and has explained his comments. How 'bout you Mac? Are we here in Jacksonville all just a bunch of legalists with no real relationship with Jesus Christ? No wonder you had to bring Maurilio in from Nashville to help you decide what to do at our church, we're all a bunch of legalistic dolts down here in Jacksonville!

- Mac gave a glowing explanation Sunday morning of what a "hypocrite" is from the Greek text. Well, Sunday night Mac's reference to the councilman gave a very nice real life picture of what a hypocrite is, and no Greek text was needed...its Mac condescendingly mentioning Davis' remarks which were intended to spur churches to get more involved in meeting social ills, while Mac himself takes six-figure gifts from our church members to enrich himself and takes half a million from the church operating budget to start a school that only the very rich will be able to afford, and Mac uses our church website to encourage members to go on expensive Holy Land trips. What is Mac doing to help in our city? Well, when Mac was called on to sit on the mayor's crime prevention steering committee with Nat Glover (former sheriff), Wayne Weaver (owner of the Jags), John Delaney (former mayor and president of UNF) and other prominent leaders in our city....Mac could find the time in his busy pastor schedule to attend only 2 of 7 meetings! Now he's poking fun of the councilman's comments, and the gullible sheep hoot and holler about it!

So Councilman Daniel Davis, keep speaking out on this issue, but don't hold your breath waiting for FBC Jax and Mac Brunson - their plate is full: millions to start a school for the very rich, need millions in campus renovations, need workers not to help the poor but to start a satellite church in southern Duval county so Mac can preach via satellite, and we need money for Mac's nationwide sermons. But when a real need arises like hurricane relief, Mac will have the ushers hold buckets at the exit after Sunday for us to throw some change in - which is what Mac did on Sunday. Maybe some money from our church budget should go to hurricane relief, and we should hold buckets at the exits to pay for Maurilio's consulting time, Mac's nationwide sermon broadcasts, and for the new school.

By the way readers, Bob Allen at Ethics Daily has a more detailed story out today on Davis' comments that you can read here.

On a side note: I wanted to let my readers hear a quote from one of our younger ministers who spoke in the Sunday evening service on the topic of illegal immigration during a forum Mac had on current events. According to this minister, a Christian worldview says we should not seal up our borders, but we should welcome all illegals since they are all "souls", and instead of closing up the border we should evangelize it and be happy that so many are coming to our country so that we can get them saved. Maybe churches should be handing out tracts to the illegals coming across the border? Listen to the remarks yourself here. After this minister spoke I heard Mac utter "that's a good word" as the young minister sat down. No Mac, that was a bad word. We need to, for security reasons, to do a better job of controlling who comes into our country. Once they're here, yes, minister to their needs...if any money is left after paying the pastor and wife, the school, the satellite churches, and the campus renovations...or we could collect change in buckets to help the illegals.

10 comments:

anon said...

Readers - the mayor works downtown, literally right next door to the FBC Jax campus. Think he had Mac and Debbie Brunson and their fancy cars, and Mac's expensive suits, and FBC and their $14 million dollar budget and 11 city blocks worth of buildings and parking garages, and stated membership of 28,000 members, in mind when he said this:(cut and pasted from the linked article)

"Jacksonville Mayor John Peyton told radio station WOKV he believes statistics back up Davis' claim.

'In Jacksonville, the highest amount of crime is committed in those areas where we have the most amount of churches," Peyton said. "We've got to stop worrying about what kind of car we're driving, what kind of suit we're wearing and how big our congregation is and minister to those people who we trip over every morning on our way to work."

YOU BET HE DID! HE IS CALLING MAC OUT! Why aren't Mac's yes men doing the same? Talk like this never came from the mayor and city council members before this arrogant charlatan came to town.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Readers: might want to visit Wade Burleson's blog to read his excellent article on Darrell Gilyard. Wade is very critical of Paige Patterson's silence in warning churches, and in fact Patterson's promotion of Gilyard even after credible sexual abuse allegations were made.

Thy Peace said...

Oh! What a sad indictment of SBC. As Pastor Wade Burleson says, they will try to shoot the messenger rather than clean up the problem within Southern Baptists.

When the leaders cover up problems, rather than expose them, what can we do? In the internet era, ordinary people are taking to the blogs. This is the only way to fight the established powers to be.

I unfortunately can not comment any more about fbcjax, because "someone" is messing with my video streams ... with repeated disconnections ... so I can not watch fbcjax through the internet anymore.

All because I made four words of mild dissent against Pastor Brunson, though I mostly liked him a lot and fbcjax. I must admit, I began to get disillusioned with SBC in the past two months.

I hope SBC do NOT "take down" Pastor Wade Burleson, for he is the only lone hope of dissent and reason against the authorities now.

gabriella422001 said...

I mostly liked the church and all too, but I sent an email just asking a question, a QUESTION, it wasn't meant to be a direct slam against ANYBODY, to someone on the staff of a ministry of FBC and lo and behold i got my email banned. I tried to figure out what I'd done to get that to happen, and now I think its because I asked a question about something the pastor said in one of his sermons. ??? How strange is THAT? Is that looked on as unforgivable dissent or something? I'm not sure now if I'm welcome in this church or not, I would lean towards probably NOT. So, I am kinda hurt. I didn't think I said anything so horrible. I just don't get it. I know i don't feel in any way welcome to get any help in that particular ministry of the church, and I really could have used the help. I guess that if I could make a suggestion its that MAYBE the office or the ministries of FBC need to watch overreacting to just simple questions or comments people make, its not like somebody is committing treason if they think a little differently or ask a little question. As it stands right now, I question a whole lot more about this church than just the original question I had.

And to me, FBC is DEFINATELY money oriented, which is why maybe people like other family members i have who have money love this church and feel welcome, and people like me don't feel welcome AT ALL. Where's the love for people who are different?

This may not have a whole lot to do with your original topic, but I am really feeling the cultural and monetary divide in this church right now. I wonder if I had money would my email have been banned, or would someone have taken the time to answer my question? (i know the answer to that one)

(here's my theory...everything and I mean everything...jobs, schools, all social institutions are geared towards not questioning nowadays. You aren't supposed to question your government or you're a traitor, your boss or you're disloyal, and your pastor or I don't know, you get banned? I can swing the job thing and fake it when my boss doesn't pay me on time and i have to hold my peace to keep my job. I can fake that. But to fake in church when you have a legitimate question is not my thing. The way i asked my question was in no way hateful disruptive or bothersome, and then BOOM...ban me. Oh well....) I still think this is a great church with a great pastor, great ministries (including the one that banned me) and great things going on. If you fit. I also think if i had all the issues you have watchdog, I would definately leave, and stop the blog.

New BBC Open Forum said...

thy peace wrote:

"I unfortunately can not comment any more about fbcjax, because "someone" is messing with my video streams ... with repeated disconnections ... so I can not watch fbcjax through the internet anymore.

"All because I made four words of mild dissent against Pastor Brunson, though I mostly liked him a lot and fbcjax. I must admit, I began to get disillusioned with SBC in the past two months."


Really, I doubt anyone is "messing" with your video streams. Sounds like a technical problem to me -- either with the 316Networks site or your ISP or computer. 316Networks is a totally separate site from FBCJax or any of the dozens of other churches whose broadcasts they carry. Let's not get paranoid!

gabriella422001,

Banned? Did you get a message saying your e-mail address was blocked? Or did your message bounce? Or did you just not receive any answer?

E-mails can be undelivered for a number of reasons. It doesn't mean you're "banned." However, not receiving a response at all seems to be a common occurrence there.

Thy Peace said...

To New BBC Open Forum:

I am a network administrator for a large company. I also know, when someone is messing with my video stream. I have sent a detailed comment earlier to Watchdog, but he refused to post it for lack of proof. If I had suspected that fbcjax will resort to this chicanery, I would have logged all the packets and kept a log of disconnections.

I am NOT paranoid. Fbcjax is.

But for now, I am tired of this mess. I have decided to move on.

Thy Peace said...

I have lost my innocence I had with Fbcjax.

Now I am more cynical, though not yet bitter.

Lately, I have been going through Pastor Wade Burleson's blog and I am learning what it is to be a baptist. Baptists have a rich history of dissent and questioning of the authorities. To me, Fbcjax (like most of the Southern Baptist Leadership) refuse to allow and tolerate dissent and questioning. As Pastor Wade Burleson mentions in his blog, the Southern Baptist Leadership have feet of clay. They impose undue burdens on others, but they themselves are not willing to lift the burdens. I believe Jesus mentioned something like this.

At the heart of the issue with Watchdog and Fbcjax is about the leadership of Fbcjax to answer questions and to allow members to dissent. I remember, Dr. Brunson mention in one his sermons, that the vision he had of fbcjax is of when, the jewish people marching under one banner in lockstep (this is my wording) ... and this gave him the impression of unity and purpose, carrying LORD's banner to battle.

Dr. Brunson, you are sadly mistaken. After Jesus Christ crucifixion and his raising from the dead, the above becomes mute. Each INDIVIDUAL (not in lockstep, with others) comes to Jesus, with the banner in their hearts, the banner being the cross, that is forever etched in their hearts (which is not visible to the outside world, except through one's fruits).

The above is the crux of the issue. This is where the current Southern Baptist Leadership are sadly misleading the baptists.

The current or past debacles of the IMB against Pastor Wade Burleson are directly about the above issue. The leadership can not and should not, shove down their thinking on baptists and try to punish dissenters. This creates an environment of dictatorship and very much like the bleak landscape Solzhenitsyn describes in his books of Soviet Union.

I remember reading of a comment by Amie Shields, when she made it on Watchdog's blog. She mentioned that Dr. Brunson is doing much good in the church. I agree. I also agree he is very energetic man. I am lucky to have 1% of his enthusiasm and energy levels. All this is no good, if Dr. Brunson can not tolerate dissent and questioning. I have tried not to post comments that are vitriolic in nature, for to me it does no one any good. But from reading of Watchdog posts, it looks like in the very beginning he was not bitter and merely questioning and dissenting.

I believe we are way past that stage now.

gabriella422001 said...

yeah... it bounced back with the word BANNED. I just don't give a @#$%. ya know?

New BBC Open Forum said...

"thy peace" and "gabriella,"

Thank you for the clarification. I'm impressed that they would go that far. They should be so proud. {sarcasm} If I were you, I wouldn't give a @#$% either!

gabriella422001 said...

I shouldn't have said that, sorry. Maybe i should have said i don't give a $$$$....it might have meant something then. :)