"...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

Friday, November 7, 2008

Mac on "Pastoral Abuse" - Part 2, How Good Mac Has It

Its quite clear that Mac's sermon on 11/5/08 at SWBTS, was born and preached out of his perceived experience. His message that day to the SWBTS students - that they need to get ready for the intense suffering and opposition they will face as preachers - is born out of his experience since Mac said that a pastor's trials and suffering "..is what God has so put on my heart to share with you today." And Mac went on to clarify he was speaking about the opposition he has faced as a mega church pastor. He gave examples of the "suffering and opposition" experienced by Criswell, Rogers, Jeremiah, Lindsay Sr, Lindsay, Jr, and Vines. Also, Patterson's introduction made it clear that Mac, like Martin Luther, was a man of many sufferings who out of love and grace has come to preach to help the students get ready for their portion of suffering. Poor Mac, he's been through so much, and now as the abused Pastor he is coming to preach to those about to be abused.

Its also a sad commentary that Mac stood in front of those students and brought no greetings from his church, he never mentioned his church, he never mentioned what a privilege it is to be pastor at FBC Jax, never mentioned one good thing about our church and the people of our church or the many benefits derived from being a preacher at a great church. Mac may be one of the most ungrateful preachers alive today. He has spent a great deal of time at late talking about the Lindsay's...one huge contrast between Brunson and Lindsay is that Lindsay was always grateful for everything God did for him and his church. Mac's only expressions are just how bad things are and how tough his life is as pastor. We hear it most Sundays ("you oughta be preacher for a week"). But the reality is that Mac has been given so VERY much - so much money, power, prestige, perks, privilege - so much more than 99.99% of the preachers in the world - yet he views himself as a martyr and victim and takes great pains to making sure others view him in this same light.

Its also a sad commentary to look to Atlanta at the 3:16 Conference..while Mac is singing "woe is me and woe will be you too" to SWBTS students, great respected preachers are taking up the complex issue of Calvinism in Atlanta (read about it here at Burleson's blog). Hunt, Vines, and Patterson are there preaching on very important doctrines in the SBC to preachers in the SBC...while Mac "Eeyore" Brunson is over at Dallas filling the minds of future SBC preachers that there is no more difficult life to live than that of the abused mega church pastor. Wow, isn't that an important topic in today's church: not the abusing pastors, but the abused pastors. The fact the Eeyore is over at SWBTS saying "Oh..well...we're all just going to be attacked and there ain't nuthin' we can do...." while big-time preachers are waxing eloquently about deep and controversial doctrinal matters tells us that Mac has definitely been relegated to the "back of the bench" at the SBC. Good thing. Might be time to demote him back to the minor leagues where he belongs so he can get a fresh perspective on what ministry is and what humility and grace and love is all about and perhaps get back to the basics.

I know I'm rehashing here topics previously blogged about, but in this article I want to clarify for Mac, the staff at FBC Jax who read this blog on a daily basis, and the students at SWBTS: Despite what he says, he is NOT suffering at FBC Jax, and has much to be grateful for. He does face opposition, but its not because he is "baptized into the holiness of God" as he declared. All leaders of large organizations, and even small ones - face tremendous challenges as leaders! It comes with the territory! Its nothing new! Good leaders deal with opposition through love, grace, steadfastness, and keeping their eye on the goal - but one things great leaders DO NOT do: is complain about how tough they have it.

Just How Good Has Mac Had it at FBC Jax?
Mac has it very good at FBC Jax. He earns a huge salary that is somewhere between $300,000 and $500,000 per year, his wife is on staff in a position that has no title and no stated hours (I'm assuming that is because she is "co pastor" and we can't call her that) - his son was put on staff IMMEDIATELY upon Mac's hire in a Director's job earning $50,000 as a 24 year old just out of college with his first full time job (and no seminary training). This was a newly created job, smacking of gross and overt nepotism. Mac has a huge personal office suite (built for him upon hire in 2006) and library larger than the average church member's home. He preaches on average two times per week max, sometimes just one - and he often stretches one sermon on Sunday morning into two by using history lesson fillers to stretch the time. He travels the world preaching and earning stipends and selling books. His wife travels with him to most locations despite them both being on staff. His wife is a trustee on the IMB and travels to those meetings; often times coming back to tell untruths to the FBC Jax staffers about certain individuals she doesn't care for at the IMB.

Mac sponsors Holy Land trips and uses the church's website to market them. He has been allowed to utilize his own preferred church marketing firm (The A Group and Maurilio Amorim) that was hired "single source" without competitive bidding (this was part of the negotiations to come to Jax) to consult with Mac on the direction of the church and to help him with his own private website and image branding. In addition to hiring a church marketing firm, Mac has been allowed to hire a promotions firm out of Atlanta to handle the coordination of and selling of advertising space at the Pastor's conference that was graciously left in the hands of Mac from Jerry Vines. 99% of the church doesn't know about the promotions firm, so Mac is able to credit the raising of funds from the advertising of the pastor's conference and the smooth running of the conference to the skill and hard work of his son...when it really was a promotions firm in Atlanta. But his son deserves some credit, as he "oversees" it.

Mac's salary and income allow him to live in a 5000+ square foot, 6 bed, 4 bath home valued at over $1 million in an exclusive, gated golf community in Jacksonville. His position as mega church pastor allowed him to be given a $300,000 piece of land just two weeks after arriving in Jacksonville on which his executive home was built, and his position as mega church pastor allowed him to be given a one-year's stay RENT FREE at a beach front condo 1 hour north of Jacksonville while his million dollar mansion was being constructed. His land gift and year's free condo stay were not for love and affection, but simply because he had the position of "mega church pastor".

And all of the above was given to Mac because he has title of "mega church pastor." Whatever perks Homer Lindsay, Jr. had, whatever gifts were given to Vines or Rogers or Criswell, however large Vines or Jeremiah's salary was/is, however much leeway Lindsay had to run the church...it was all given to them out of the love and respect they EARNED through years and years and years of service to our Lord and to the church at which they served. All the privilege and power and prestige heaped on Mac was not earned...it was granted upon his arrival. Hence the spoiled rotten attitude of Mac. He didn't have to earn it.

I shall continue expounding on how wonderful Mac has had it at our church:

The bylaws of our church were changed in December 2007 so as to grant Mac more power and to remove the congregation's ability to call for a church meeting unless approved by the trustees. The bylaw changes granted Mac the sole power to appoint trustees...a discipline committee was formed and Mac went on a 2 month kick mentioning and threatening "church discipline" in many of his sermons to try and intimidate the bloggers. But my point is that Mac has it so good that these granting of extra power to him was all done without him having to give one word of explanation to the church...the proposed by law changes were kept in the library and could be "signed out" but not copied nor removed from the library. So less than 1% of the congregation reviewed them before they voted. And apparently his deacons and trustees were behind him 100% with no stated opposition. Students at SWBTS: try making significant changes to your church's bylaws without holding a meeting to allow members to read them, to ask questions, or at least without you EXPLAINING what the changes are and why they are necessary. Try what Mac did at YOUR new church, and you will be out the door so fast it will make your head spin. But not so with Mac. He has it very good!

When Mac arrived we spent tens of thousands of dollars to introduce Mac to our community where we rented out our minor league municipal baseball statium for a "Sermon on the Mound" event. It was a dud, as Mac gave a weak sermonette to our friends and family we invited that were sorely disappointed.

We also graciously allowed Mac time off his first year to keep his speaking committments; we also allowed him to vacate the pulpit so he could finish his book manuscript, the "Pastor's Guidebook" in which he tells pastors not to do precisely the same things he himself has done as a mega church pastor - like accepting gifts, living in executive homes, driving luxury cars, and using one's pulpit as a bully pulpit - all things he tells pastors not to do, but he himself does. How twisted is that: we allowed him time off to write a book about not accepting gifts and living in large houses at the very time he was accepting gifts and building a huge house. There's a word in the Greek for that: hypocrite.

When Mac arrived we allowed him to immediately begin advertising his Holy Land trips. We raised money for his son's wedding reception before Mac even showed up for his first day on the job. Envelopes were passed around all the Sunday School departments to collect money to give to Mac's newly married son...church resources were used to print up flyers announcing his son's wedding reception...we not only didn't know Mac yet, but we certainly didn't know his son, and we weren't told that when we hired Mac it was the trinity of Mac, Honey and Trey.

Mac wanted a school, so we are starting a school. He didn't have to raise funds for it, didn't even hold a business meeting to vote on whether we should or should not (try that at your church, SWBTS students). He did hold an unannounced business meeting to take $500,000 from our church funds to start it (but the truth is he had started down the path way before he asked for the $500,000). Mac wanted to put himself on national TV, so he was allowed to hold a special offering under the banner of "Media Evangelism" - but it was just a way to market an effort to raise the $180,000 to put himself on nationwide TV on the INSP network. The special offering was on Easter Sunday, and he never did announce how much was raised - but lo and behold in a few months there was Mac on the INSP network. He asks us to give to special offerings but doesn't even show us the respect of telling us how much we did raise, or to even thank those of us who did give.

So SWBTS students - I say all of that to say: Mac ain't sufferin'. Yes, pastors suffer. Somtimes through no fault of their own, sometimes because they misbehave. But Mac ain't one of the "sufferin' servants". And he had more than the 6 months of bliss he quoted you, and more than just a "few months" that Paige Patterson said Mac had before we tried to "kill him". What he painted for you as a man of many sufferings as a mega church pastor...its like so many other things that Mac does - its all a marketing and image ploy to garner support from you and others around the SBC for the mess he has made at FBC Jax. And it is a mess. And he now seeks to dupe you into believing its because he's such a holy person and he is therefore being attacked by the devil. How sad.

In the next articles we'll analyze the foolishness of many of Mac's statements in his sermon that day.

43 comments:

Thy Peace said...

These are my observations and suggestions:

If Pastor Mac in the beginning days of his tenure, engaged fbcjax members in a honest and open forum, with no retaliation(s), then all this would have been avoided.

All that would have costed him would have been his pride. Since Our Lord Jesus Christ has paid for ALL of our sins and has forgiven us, surely Pastor Mac could afford to put his pride to suffer.

Even now, it's till doable. All it would need is for Pastor Mac to simply engage the members in an open forum. May be they could set aside a month full of Wednesday evenings for this purpose. Let there be no ridicule or retaliation for questioning. Let us all act with Grace, Humility and Respect for the office of Senior Pastor. Let Pastor Mac humbly and lovingly explain his thoughts to the questions. I am sure there will be some members who are angry and frustrated, but that is OK. Since we ALL belong to Our Lord Jesus Christ.

There is no reason under heaven and earth, for Pastor Mac to lose members from fbcjax, because he is unable to do the above. Now all the projects can be put on hold, till these problems are resolved. Surely it would be better for fbcjax to move forward with unity and love, than with unresolved questions and frustrations that the leadership has not addressed some of the members questions.

May be I am very naive. But to be honest, believing in Our Lord Jesus Christ, looks naive to the World. But we need to develop and test our Faith. And this is such a small test of Faith and Love.

For this to work, the only requirement is for Pastor Mac to truly want to reconcile and heal the wounds at fbcjax. Pastor Mac, Sir, it's not wise to kick out or lose your old members. To me, they are a treasure. They have spent lot of time at the church (years, decades). Their wisdom is such a waste to be thrown away, because you think they are holding up progress.

You need to draw up all people (Only Our Lord Jesus Christ, The Holy Spirit and The Word of God can do this) and lead them with love and humility. Such is the command given by Our Lord Jesus Christ.

Please do this. Do this with the Love of Our Lord Jesus Christ. If you fail, we all fail here. Then at least, Our Lord Jesus Christ will say you tried.

But my feeling is, if the above forum is tried with love and humility, then it will succeed.

I had rather be a fool and abase myself for Our Lord Jesus Christ, than look good to the rest of the World.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Not going to happen Thy Peace.

Mac has drawn the line.

Whatever opposition he faces has nothing to do with anything he has or has not done. He is God's man, baptized into the holiness of God, delivering God's vision, and if there is opposition it is of the devil.

There is nothing to talk about.

He is holding meetings but not to hear what people say, but to TELL THEM what his vision is.

He will likely remain as pastor, "dead weight" will continue to leave, and they will be replaced by people who, like our well meaning poster Pennington have a twisted view of pastoral authority...and they are ripe for abuse. As the numbers dwindle Mac will begin to use the phrase "cleansing of the church" or the "refining of the church"...and he will make himself to be a victim...and he will eventually see numbers turn around as new members are recruited who are willing to be spiritually abused.

Or...trustees and deacons will wise, change the rules by which Mac is playing to the point that Mac doesn't like the game anymore and he leaves.

Its either of those two options.

No in between. No "reconciliation".

Thy Peace said...

WD, I understand that is what has been going on. But I pray for The Holy Spirit to convict and convince Pastor Mac of the above. That he should listen to fbcjax members voices and concerns. To act as a True Shepherd. To fulfill the mandate given by Our Lord Jesus Christ to not let the sheep stray or be lost.

Pastor Mac, please listen to your flock. Please also, do not attempt to do as in Two Rivers and BBC (Bellevue).

Then ALL is lost. Our Lord Jesus Christ will grieve for His Children.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

And I'm praying that Obama will change his mind and be pro-life, and will want to leave more money in people's hands and not want to spread the wealth around.

Leaders are who they are. They have world views that don't change.

Mac won't change. I'm not saying don't pray, but just saying what history tell us.

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:09am here again,

ThyPeace, the Dog is right. The church is at a point of purification. The old days have passed and the new days are here. As FBCJax moves forward with their efforts in reaching the unchurched in the fastest growing region of our city, we will begin to see the folks who don't approve of the methods of doing so. So what we are seeing is the process of purification, thos who are with the Lord or against him. Now, don't get me wrong. I'm not saying Mac is the Lord. Pastor Mac is following the Lord and seeking his direction. That's all you can ask from a pastor and some congregants don't like certain directions. And so we are beginning to see which ones, like the Watchdog for example.
What I find to be quite humorous, however, is that the Watchdog complains about the Brunson supporters being Kool-Aid drinkers. Well, the Watchdog himself was a Kool-Aid drinker too, under Lindsay Jr. and Vines. Even if Lindsay Jr. and Vines were humble men, the Dog still drank the Kool-Aid. So in essence, we're all drinking the Kool-Aid or have drunk the Kool-Aid.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

12:09, just to clarify.

I don't believe its "purification"...I believe Mac and you, his Kool Aid drinkers, believe that as the church declines you will convince yourselves that it is the "purification of the church".

This is when abuse occurs.

The leader abuses.

People complain. Some people voice opposition.

The leader explains it by saying "these people are not of God. God is 'purifying' his church by getting rid of these unregenerate".

This further gives the leader more power, as his opposition leaves. And the abuse will continue.

And you have shown you have been deceived by Mac Brunson if you compare Brunson's leadership style with that of Lindsay and Vines and declare those people at the church as Kool Aid drinkers.

But that's fine buddy.

Just remember: abusers at churches usually want to get their hands on either your wallet or your genitals. Sorry to be so crass, but that is how it is. So right now hold on to your wallet, as the church is "refined" into just a group of Brunson followers. Brunson may not want to get his hands in your pants, just your wallet, but the church is being groomed to be tolerant of a Bob Gray leader as well.

Anonymous said...

Headline about 90th birthday of Billy Graham:

GRAHAM FRAIL, BUT HIS LEGACY IS STRONG. November 7,2008

A direct quote from the article by William Long, a former professor of religion and humanities.

"He (Graham) went straight for the essential Gospel message: Jesus Christ died for you.

He was the evangelist who did not rip off millions or run with prostitutes or build a mega-church or run for president or run a Christian political lobby."

Grant Wacker, professor of Christian history at Duke University in Durham, NC added:

"His personal gifts were and are immense: honesty, humility, savvy, a rich voice and Hollywood looks, sexual and FINANCIAL integrity, and administrative skills."

O for a thousand tongues to sing praises to our King for providing such Godly examples to lead.

Esther

Anonymous said...

VERBALLY ABUSING OTHERS: The narcissists is only concerned with what he can gain personally from other people. If there is no perceived benefit flowing directly to the narcissist, then that person is seen as unimportant. Therefore most people are seen as the little people, lower cast, nobodies. The narcissist will speak disparagingly about these people behind their backs to those he sees as important (like him). Most of the abuse metered out by the narcissist will be in the form of verbal and emotional abuse or neglect.

Charm/Flattery: Juxtaposed against all those ‘little people’ that the narcissist has not immediate use for (other than to tell him how wonderful he is), there are those individuals who are perceived as having value because of what they may be able to do for the narcissist. These people will be charmed and flattered and catered to until they are no longer of use. Afterwards they may be feared and treated civilly, but if there is no fear the narcissist will treat them as the other ‘low life, nobodies.’

"The power of the NPD person to bring you into unconscious agreement with his belief that he is someone truly extraordinary is possibly the most remarkable feature of the narcissist. Before you know what is happening, you may be following his lead, enjoying the charisma, or perhaps intimidated by his persuasiveness, power, and authority. You may not realize that you are losing track of your agenda and, at the same time, deferring to his. The narcissist's belief that you, too, are special because he has selected you to associate with him is the other compelling force at work. In fact, who isn't vulnerable to the warming glow admiration, especially from someone with such apparent personal power?"

Thy Peace said...

WD, I am sorry to say that you are being proven right.

I sincerely hope that all leaders see the wisdom of checks and balances in governance.

I offer this Prayer of St. Francis:

Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console;
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
It is in dying to self that we are born to eternal life.

Anonymous said...

Before graduating from SWBTS in the early '90s (MDiv degree), I seldom ever attended chapel services---no matter who was preaching there. Instead, I hung out in the student center---working on my own sermons for the following Sunday (was a full-time pastor though also a full-time student---so said my church!), cramming once more for the Greek class to follow the same morning, working on research papers assigned by my professors, and trying to keep my life arranged/managed so that I could spend quality time with my wife and little daughter. I wasn't alone in the student center, either; lots of my fellow-students never attended the chapel services. Those who did attend chapel regularly---for the most part, I think---were savvy folk; just because a preacher said it, that didn't mean they believed it. They might not know what to do sometimes in their ministries, but professors were available to consult with (keep in mind that SWBTS was a VERY different school---and a much better one---in those days; NOT all professors serving there now agree with SWBTS's present administration, but they keep their heads down---the same with FBCJax's associate ministers).

I'd guess the same is true of those who heard your pastor preach there recently. Those students realize that they'll NEVER serve a congregation as large or complicated as FBCJax---and most of them don't want to. I think those students---again, somewhat different than in my day if they're attending SWBTS these days---still can see through what they were being told. Then, afterwards they walked over to the student center for a donut and coffee, and took the message apart to examine it for whatever it was.

Not to worry, really.

Anonymous said...

I saw an excellent sermon this am from Charles Stanley. He said that if a person focuses on not being like their father, then they won't be. And, if that person does not desire to be like their mother, they won't be. Additionally, whatever focus that person is against thats not what they desire. Didn't Mac say he never wanted to be a "local Pastor". Either Stanley got it right or Mac is suggesting he really wanted to do something else. Wonder what keeps him at a local church?

Anonymous said...

12:14 You are very astute. God bless you and your family and your ministry.

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:14

Thank you for this view from within.

Anonymous said...

Anon. 12:21

You asked why Brunson stays.

May I humbly respond by adding that it never ceases to amaze me that it is always those that spend so much time preaching about the right way to live and do things far too often turn out to live by another set of standards diametrically opposed to that which they teach.

Thank you for your input.

Anonymous said...

My two cents worth. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to understand why he stays. He has never before had so much power, money and lack of accountability. FBC Dallas was a stepping-stone and measuring stick as to just how easy he could stick it to you, and has gone beyond measure at FBCJ.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

A bit off topic, here, but contrast Smyrl's dark, negative view of the election results Tuesday night:

Smyrl's Post

with that of Al Mohler:

Mohler's Post

Smyrl declares:

"The dominant blue color represents the condition of my heart as I see a nation make the last of the 180 degrees of turning away from God. Tonight, America as I have known it for over 38 years, no longer exists."

Can you believe this guy? Our country as he has known it no longer exists because his guy didn't win? What a dark, negative view. My guy wasn't Obama, but I still have hope for my country! I am ready for this guy to go hard left, and if he does we will show him who is boss in 2012! Palin 2012! Smile Smyrl!

or this gem from Jim the Dark Pearl Smyrl:

"No longer will we be one nation under God, but rather an international union under a unifying economy. You, my dear children, will be faced with a choice to bend your biblical convictions in order to survive or to stand firm in grace with the imminent risk of losing all.

Dr. Mohler is more positive, acknowledges the significance of the election of the first African American, and holds out some positive hope of what to do now.

So lighten up Smyrl. Where's your faith? Isn't God in control? Or is this what you've been taught by Brunson. Things don't go your way in your country or your church - you face stiff opposition and set backs from people who don't agree with you 100%, its all the work of the devil and all hell is breaking loose and woe is me and we?

And Jim, NEWSFLASH: Our country still exists, we still are the free nation we were November 3rd, and the good news is this:

OBAMA WILL BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE BY THE PEOPLE OF THIS COUNTRY AND THE MEDIA. We'll be able to watch and critique and complain openly if we desire when he goes off track. He won't be able to change the Constitution behind our backs. If he takes us off track, the press will be there, and we have an active conservative voice in TV, Radio, and on the Internet.

America ain't FBC Jax Smyrl...we still have a voice in America! And you are free to wear a tie or to not wear a tie! God Bless America!

Anonymous said...

Thy Peace: It's too late for Mac to turn against himself. Humility is not any part of Macs personality. He must GO! He has ruined himself here. Period. He is a failure and wants to blame anything and everybody else for it. Whom ever, he has been listening to for advice, is in worse shape than he is. They and he have cost him a jewel in the crown (FBC). It is my opinion that Mac never was called to preach, and is lucky he got this far. The money, time and effort, and the wasted confidence, is the price that has been paid for Mac Brunson and family. God grant us peace and send us a true man of God.

Anonymous said...

Let's hope while Honey was at SWBTS this week visiting Dorothy Patterson that she and the First Lady (yes, that is what some call D. Patterson), went through and marked First Lady's hat collection and decided which ones Honey will inherit once the baton is passed.

Anonymous said...

I am firmly convinced that Mac and Honey's dogs live a much privileged life compared to the many homeless we see around the mission nearby. What a shame! Does Honey volunteer services there? I suppose she is too busy with, ugh, responsibilities at FBC and the IMB that prohibits community service, except at events for the rich and famous.

Anonymous said...

12:09 Anon,

You are drinking the Kool Aid from Rick Warren.

Did you not say UNCHURCHED? Yep, you sure did! That is PURPOSE DRIVEN for THE LOST. Caught you there PD. You Sir are brainwashed with PURPOSE DRIVEN and you didn't even know it. These PD pastors are cunning. They are teaching PD and no one sees it. Sly and crafty they are. Under the radar they infiltrate the church with the Rick Warren doctrine.

12:09 you need to get your head out of the sand and research how Warren is changing FBCJAX. Don't listen to me look it up.

Anonymous said...

Anon. 12:09

Purification of the church? Common words used by the catholic church; common practice used by scientology. Which are you?

Anonymous said...

12:09 Anon - yes, I drank the Kool-Aid under Lindsay and Vines. What kind were they serving? Love Jesus, be Thankful, and examine their lives. They lived humbly, preached boldly and inspired us to love them also and serve with them. I don't regret my followship of them. Mac is nothing like that. He uses his position for financial gain and for "respect" which he cherishes most highly and seems to be constantly searching for. He is a charlatan, plain and simple and obvious. I will take the Kool-Aid of Vines and Lindsay anytime.

And dare we even try to compare Shirley Lindsay to Honey? Might as well compare Mother Teresa to Hillary Clinton.

anon12:09 - why not be a man and post your name? Or are you an anonymous unregenerate coward like the rest of us?

Anonymous said...

Speak for yourselves, but I did not drink Kool Aid from Lindsay, he and the church then served cool, refreshing and tranquil waters from God's Almighty well, the waters were muddied much later.

Anonymous said...

Now that we all know Mac gossips, I'll let you in on what some are saying at FBCJ. They are just waiting for you to go away, and they believe it will be soon since you do not have support enough to make a difference in what is going on. Just saying' as Mac did about Truett, Criswell, Klouda and others.

Anonymous said...

From narcissism to cult culture:

"One of the hallmarks of every cult is its propensity to gather closely around a leader and to elevate that leader to a kind of kingly status both in their minds, and in their treatment of this leader. The leader's words and sayings becomes law. The leader is often viewed as being above reproach. In Christian circles, it is often viewed as "carnal" and "unruly" to be critical of the leader, particularly if that criticism deals with doctrinal positions taken by the leader, or pronouncements that are viewed by some as contrary to Scripture.

In Christianity today, we are witnessing a dramatic rise in the cult of the personality resulting in a flood of bad pastors standing in our pulpits. Today, we are seeing two distinct movements within Christianity. First, there is the fleshly, man-centered risings of certain churches, always occasioned by man with a powerful, dominating personality, who takes control over the church, leading it according to his own sense of direction. Naturally, his position is that the direction he is taking the church is towards God, because, after all, he is following Christ. It is not uncommon for such strong leaders to become, in a real sense, an "extra-biblical" manifestation of Christ and His Word to the people. They will come to feel that they are seeing God manifested in this man, and that this man is so close to God, that when he speaks, it is as though God speaks. In other words, these men, these bad pastors, these corrupt leaders within the Body, these wolves in sheep's clothing, become so powerful that they are often able to turn the people away from God, and are able to lead the people completely astray".

Thy Peace said...

I want to drink from this Well.

I Know A Well
St. John of the Cross

I know a well that flows and runs
Yet remains hidden
Eternal spring a hidden well
Yet I know where it rises

I do not know where it begins
For it is eternal
Every beginning and every end
Flow from this well

I know nothing else so full of beauty
In the heavens or the earth
For all beauty and all life
Drink from the water of her light

I know this well will run eternal
Ever deep and ever wide
And no one man can ever cross it
Without the faith from on high

And no one man can ever cross her
Without the faith from on high
I know a well running clear
With a light never darkened

I know this well does overflow
To give light to mankind
This spring is hidden within the living Bread
Flowing from the Bread of Life

And no one man can ever taste it
Without the faith from on high
And no one man can ever taste it
Without the faith from on high

I know a well that flows and runs

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

At least Obama has class enough to know that when he disses a woman in public that he should apologize.

Today in his first press conference after the election, Obama made an remark about Nancy Reagan that was not nice, but it wasn't planned and he was trying to say a joke and it was an uncalled for slam at Nancy Reagan.

What did Obama do?

He apologized.

He was man enough to say he was sorry.

He called Nancy Reagan.

And he told the country he was sorry.

That's what leaders do.

When they offend someone, especially from a public platform, especially as a leader, they say they're sorry.

Even if they meant no harm. They apologize.

Mac, can't you apologize to Sheri Klouda?

Or are you just not man enough?

Can you apologize to the the people of FBC Dallas that love Mrs. Criswell since you implied in your SWBTS sermon that just as Mrs. Truett opposed Dr. Criswell, so "history repeated itself" and Mrs. Criswell opposed you?

You are a small man, Mac. You dis women from your pulpit - you told a lie about Klouda, and you for no good reason at all gossiped about Mrs. Truett and Mrs. Criswell.

Shame on you Mac.

Good for you Obama. That is a good start, to show you have humility and can quickly admit when you say something you shouldn't.

Pretty sad when a liberal democratic president shows more class than a SBC mega church pastor.

Such is life these days in this topsy turvy world.

Anonymous said...

ATTN: 9:07 please deliver message, since they don't read this blog.(right, ha). What right do they have to steal this church from the Lord and from the people that truly serve and have served Him. We are not going away. WE intend to get OUR monies worth!

Anonymous said...

It appears that Mac may possibly suffer not only from NPD, but meglomania. Personality disorders that could not be more clear.

meglomania: a disorder of mind marked by feelings of personal omnipotence and grandeur.(Websters Def.)

Anonymous said...

WD 10:52. One must have class to show any.

mark pennington said...

I listened to Dr. Brunson's message from the chapel service. Thank you for the link. Great message! Powerful, heart-felt, and Bible-based! He gave the students an important warning, a realistic one that will help them in the future. He didn't specifically complain about FBCJ and his statements about suffering persecution were general. What's wrong with telling the TRUTH and telling it like it is?

I remember both Dr. Lindsay, Jr. and Dr. Vines mentioning persecution and opposition and the fact that they wouldn't open any mail that didn't contain any info. about who sent it. That's a reference to the complaint that Dr. Brunson won't respond to ANONYMOUS people.

Dr. Brunson is abusing his church? What a claim! A false one. People that have left FBCJ have done so because they loathe change and/or disagree with sound preaching that teaches and challenges. Or they were CALLED BY GOD to serve elsewhere. I know, somebody here will reply that such an idea is ridiculous, because a pastor being chosen by God and being anointed is silly thinking, perhaps even "naive." I won't fall into that trap of disbelief, nor will I succumb to the notion that such a position is a "twisted view of pastoral authority."

Here's an idea that you surely can't refute. If God wanted change, He would see to it.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Mark - Mac most certainly was preaching out of his own perceived experience of persecution as a mega church pastor. Its so obvious, that if you can't see that you've been blinded and your blind faith in Mac Brunson has affected your logic and reasoning. He came to a point in the sermon where he wanted to tell the students that their perception of how easy mega church pastors have it is wrong. He then gave examples of Criswell, Truett, Rogers, Jeremiah, Lindsay and Vines to prove his point. He most definitely delivered the message: I am being persecuted for being such a great, Godly, holy, visionary leader. And he decided to throw Mrs. Truett and Mrs. Criswell under the bus to prove his point. What a man. What a man to desecrate the memory of two pastors' wives. When he finally moves on to another church he'll likely do the same with Shirley Lindsay. You can bank on it. Mac and his wife love to throw people under the bus that they disagree with or that voice opposition to them. Mac does it in the pulpit. She does it in staff meetings.

No complaint here about anon emails. He has taken a bold stand against the evils of anon emails. Good for him.

Yep, abusing his church. Read the blog. He's an abusive pastor. Team Brunson will milk us for all we're worth, and they'll move on when they no longer feel the love.

People are leaving the church because they "loathe change" or disagree with "sound teaching". That absolutely is what Brunson believes, and you have bought into it as well. One sign of an egotistic abusive preacher - he runs people off and declares as they leave or as they voice opposition that they are backsliders or against God's will for the church. Scary stuff, but that's why there are abusive preachers...gullible people like you buy into their nonsense.

"If God wanted change, he'd see to it"

I've already explained Mark that God brings change about through men. Abuse occurs under the guise of "oh well, I won't do or say anything about this abuse, because if God wanted something to change, he'd change it." And all along God was wanting man to do something about it.

So keep on following Team Brunson, and please, get ready to dig deep to help raise the $20 million. Interesting, God is the one that brings change, right? OK, then let Mac call on God to deliver the 20 million dollars...nope, funny, isn't it...Mac needs YOUR money.

Anonymous said...

Mark 11:01 AM referring to people leaving FBCJ: "People that have left FBCJ have done so because they loathe change and/or disagree with sound preaching that teaches and challenges".

So Mark you are now implying that the fellowship and FBCJ did not receive sound preaching from Mac's predecessors, or was it a form of gossiping you have deemed appropriate for pastors such as Brunson. Watch out sir, you are stepping on some big toes.... Lindsay Sr.; Lindsay Jr., and Vines. YOU will never hear more sound, biblical doctrine than what was preached from the pulpit when those men were behind it. Wonder how the families of these men feel about your remarks, I'm sure their displeasure is heartfelt.

To your dying day, or the Lord's return, you should pray to be blessed by men of God who so greatly loved Jesus and FBC to the extent God and Jesus messages were the core of their ministries, not who was persecuting them or had bad their circumstances were. Brunson is merely a "fill-in" for better things to come. He is enjoying his stardom while he can and using folks like you to hold him up.

You should pray to drink from the well of God, not the stream from Brunson's back door.

As for challenges, you have no idea what you are talking about. It is easy to go along with someones grandiose ideas for growth, but what about the wisdom and expediency of so doing. Have you thoroughly investigated, questioned, CHALLENGED, or more importantly prayed about the direction God wants FBCJ to take, or you simply wrapped up in what Brunson's and marketing groups believe will elevate the pastor's own glorification?

Brunson, deacons and trustees that buy into the "throw mama from the train" or roll over the dissenters with a bus will someday soon backfire. Hope you are not under the one driven by Mac!

Anonymous said...

Blog. of 11:0l Watch out for that cliff coming up ahead of you!

Anonymous said...

Parasite: One who habitually dining at the tables of others; a person who lives at the expense of another; something that resembles a biological parasite in dependence on something else for existance or support without making a useful or adequate return.

Anonymous said...

Mark, this is for you concerning the "fear of expulsion" Brunson and his team have instilled.

Fear is a form of manipulation, which the Bible calls witchcraft. Manipulation is sin. Instead of motivating people through love and a call to serve the body of Christ and reach the lost, a spiritually abusive minister will try to motivate through manipulation.

The apostle John is called the apostle of love because he wrote so much about our call as Christians to walk in love. 'There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear,' he wrote in 1 John 4:18.

By keeping people in fear, controlling spiritual leaders work to get good Christian people to build their religious kingdoms — by telling them that they are building the kingdom of God. We see this kind of prophet and priest in the book of Jeremiah. The controlling leaders are focused on their own needs being met, and the needs of the people are ignored.

Jesus was more critical of the religious leaders of His day than He was of the sinners, and for good reason. The Jewish leaders put false religious burdens on the people for the sake of their own prosperity.

I personally know members who are
"fearful" of being discommunicated or expelled from FBCJ, thus are reluctant to step up to actually expose further abuse of membership who disagree or call to question the agenda pushed down their throats by the marketing groups, Mac and family, and the influence of questionable persons representing the SBC and the agenda of Paige Patterson and constiutents.

Further, words can never explain the disdain some have felt about Brunson's and wife gossiping about others.

Thy Peace said...

Here are the links for Pastor Mac's sermon on 1 Peter 1 Nov 5th 2008 at SWBTS [Chapel]: listen or download.

Anonymous said...

Mac, Honey, Trey, A-Group, trustees and deacons:

"Should A Pastor Rule Over You?

Authoritarianism in the church is one of the most serious problems that Christian churches face today. Authoritarian regimes and political machines within Christian churches are not only totally unbiblical, but they empower men to take a church anywhere they wish, bypassing the normal checks and balances found in the Bible. A church that has given control to a single man (often called a Senior Pastor) or to a small group of men (often called a board of elders) is helplessly tossed about in very dangerous waves.

Suddenly churches are turned on a dime according to the whims and agendas of men. If a dictatorial pastor wakes up on the wrong side of the bed and decides to take the whole church off a cliff doctrinally, most congregations just blindly follow, thinking they are helpless to do anything about it, if they even notice or care at all. Christians have been bombarded with the lie that certain men are appointed by God to rule and reign over His people. No, the Bible forbids such things and gives us the solution.


The popular yet monumental misunderstanding of authority in the church is probably the biggest problem driving the false church system. The main problem is with the people that the Bible calls "Nicolaitans", those who Christians allow to conquer and suppress them. (From the Greek, the word "nico" means "suppression or conquering of" and "laos" is where we get the word laity which means people). In Revelation 2:6 and 2:15, Jesus said that He hates the practices and teachings of the Nicolaitans".

Some Greek for Mac and PP to consider as well as deacons, trustees and staff.

Thy Peace said...

I would encourage all bloggers and deacons to listen to the Pastor Mac's sermon. I sometimes felt he was talking about me. I am sure some of the deacons will feel that way too.

I know in the sermon, Pastor Mac talks about persecution, suffering caused to the pastors or preachers.

Does he consider any questioning of his decisions as causing him to suffer or being persecuted? Or would it have to be an active opposition as in the examples he used of FBC Dallas? Curious.

I have noticed in the past four months, whenever Pastor Mac preaches or during prayers, he seem to use a LOUD voice. Has this been your observation? I sometimes feel like all my doubts and questions get wiped away while I am listening to him. Sometimes my ears hurt with the dynamic range and have to tone down the volume.

You have to concede he delivers his speeches forcefully.

Can someone clarify for me what's the story of Mrs. Brunson making remarks in staff meetings and IMB meetings. Curious. I think of her as an intelligent lady. So I am surprised to hear of that.

Anonymous said...

Here's the way it is: I don't have to meet First Baptist's standards, they have to meet mine. And since they don't I am no longer there.

mark pennington said...

To anon 3:31

No, of course I wasn't implying that the previous pastors of FBCJ didn't preach sound biblical doctrine! That's an awful thought! I have nothing but great respect, admiration, appreciation,and love for Lindsay, Sr., Lindsay Jr. and Vines! I heard a message by Lindsay Jr. on the radio (88.7)the other day and was greatly blessed and was glad to hear his unique stlye and passion again! It brought back really good memories.

I said,"People that have left FBCJ have done so because they loathe change and/or disagree with sound preaching that teaches and challenges." I can see how that could be misunderstood. The intention was to remark on the idea that some people have left in spite of the fact that Dr. Brunson preaches sound doctrine. Perhaps some people just simply don't like his style, inclusion of history, and/or tendency to require a lot of page turning, since he normally uses many passages. Maybe they think his challenges to the congregation to too abrasive. Well that's not abuse, that's responsible leadership!

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Hi Mark - thanks for clarifying your remarks.

A couple of questions: Do you know Mac Brunson personally? Have you been to his home? Does he know YOU personally? Are you a deacon?

mark pennington said...

Jax Watchdog said...
Hi Mark - thanks for clarifying your remarks.

A couple of questions: Do you know Mac Brunson personally? Have you been to his home? Does he know YOU personally? Are you a deacon?

November 10, 2008 4:29 PM

Hello Watchdog, your welcome. That definitely had to be clarified!

No to all four questions.