Brunson and the Trustees have their "Anti-Criticism Doctrine".
Below is the video of the motion read and passed at FBC Jacksonville on February 25, 2009 that passes judgement and condemns the FBC Jax Watchdog blog and its accused blogger (as well as giving factually incorrect and misleading allegations about both), and also delivers their new policy, warning that deacons will "confront aggressively in accordance with scripture" those who say things in the future they think are divisive or constitute "unjust criticism and ridicule". Not just lies they are going after, but "unjust criticism" will be deserving of being "confronted aggressively".
After seeing and hearing that motion, I have more questions than answers:
- "aggressively confront in accordance with scripture"....is that not an oxymoron? Sort of like "I'm going to kick your butt...in accordance with scripture";
- was there any love or grace or mercy of any kind in that edict read?
- Considering the edict itself has incorrect and harmful and misleading information about the accused member, how hypocritical is it for this edict to contain admonitions to those who express "harmful opinions and false statements"?
- how does this new doctrine square with Mac's message this past Sunday about how we as Christians are to endure affliction without striking back, and to be patient to those who abuse us, for Christ's sake and the sake of the gospel and the abuser?
- "Unjust criticism and ridicule of the ministry..."? We need to vote on a motion addressing criticism and ridicule?
- I thought the pastor said blogs were nothing more than "beauty shop gossip" and that anonymous bloggers have zero credibility? So how is this blog so dangerous to the spiritual and financial health of the church? Or is it widespread dissemination of the facts (not lies) on the blog that are causing harm?
- where were the 8 minute business meeting motions from our deacons in years past addressing the evil of child molestation by deacons, and adultery by ministers?
- isn't this edict closer to what Islamic fundamentalists would read, than would ministers of the grace and love of Jesus Christ? You say something we don't like that we think is divisive and hurtful, we're going to come after you and "shut you down".
- I thought we were Theology Driven, and that the bible is sufficient in all matters...why do we need an edict read by the retired judge, President of the Trustees to address blogs and criticism?
- was a quorum present to pass this? Were there 1000 members present to vote on this? Did I just ask that? You better believe I did.
- if Homer were here and faced this problem, would he address it himself with the accused and then personally to his congregation, or would he send the president of the trustees out to read a cold, unloving edict while he's out of town? Just askin'....
- are you as surprised as I was that our lay leaders really did buy into Mac's "church discipline is to put the fear of God in you?"
- don't you love Bro. Jim Whitmire? You could sense his uncomfortableness with having to clean up after that mess, but his sweet spirit did bring the service back to a worshipful atmosphere. God bless you, Bro. Jim, you are a spiritual giant among some mighty puny men.
Watchdog will have plenty more to say on this motion in the coming days, particularly the false and misleading portions of the "Anti-Criticism Doctrine of 2009"
One last question: is this what we've become and are all about? Edicts about blogs, opinions, false statements and criticism and aggressive confrontation?
Followed by applause? What WERE they applauding?
A dark day indeed in the history of FBC Jacksonville.