Matthew 7:15 (NIV) “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.

Matthew 24:11: (NIV) “…and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people.”

2 Timothy 2:23 - 25 (NIV) - 23Again I say, don’t get involved in foolish, ignorant arguments that only start fights. 24 A servant of the Lord must not quarrel but must be kind to everyone, be able to teach, and be patient with difficult people. 25 Gently instruct those who oppose the truth. Perhaps God will change those people’s hearts, and they will learn the truth.

Monday, August 4, 2014

I Expect Better from Fox News Reporter Todd Starnes

Todd Starnes, Fox News reporter, posted the following brief piece on Facebook about Braxton Caner, Ergun Caner's son who committed suicide last week:
(Note: The Caner family asked me to share my commentary with you. I am honored to do so.)
I did not know Braxton Caner. But I knew his father - Ergun - a Muslim convert who became a Christian preacher.
For years Ergun has been hounded by unrelenting critics accusing him of all sorts of ministerial misdeeds. They hunted him like prey -- as if it was some sort of spiritual sport.
In early July - they found a new target -- Ergun's teenage son - Braxton.
The 15-year-old was a son and a brother. He played football, dated a girl and drove a pickup truck. The young man's supposed "crime" was defending his father.
They wrote terrible things about the 15-year-old - beyond the pale. It was theological thuggery.
And last week - Braxton ended his life.
We do not know what led young Braxton to do the unthinkable. We do not know if the postings of these online agitators pushed this young child over the edge. But these are the facts.
A 15 year old boy was bullied. His reputation tarnished at the hands of grown men who professed to be doing God's work. And now Braxton Caner is gone. Bullied in the name of Christ.
Twitter allows us to express our thoughts in 140 characters.
But I only need nine. 
Jesus Wept.
I expect better from Todd Starnes. On the very day the Caner's held the memorial service for Braxton, Todd - apparently at the request of the Caner's - decided to insinuate blame for this tragedy on the part of bloggers, and to give a slanted opinion of facts. Starnes says "..we do not know if postings of these online agitators pushed this young child over the edge" is to presume that just perhaps they were, and to assume they probably were; when there could be any number of contributing factors, with varying weights or contributions to Braxton's decision to take his life.

Todd Starnes and others like him who are already blaming people for Braxton's suicide, should heed the advice of Jen Pollock Michel, who wrote back in 2012 about her own family member's suicide in her piece "In the Wake of Suicide's Silence, Why Blame is Never the Answer":
"Trying to locate blame is not usually helpful when seeking to understand why a person has chosen to take his life, especially when that locus of blame is sought by outside observers. The reasons are never immediately obvious, even to those within the closest circles of family and friends. Moreover, the problems are never one-dimensional or easily fixed."
So shame on Todd Starnes on the day of Braxton's funeral to begin throwing stones of blame at people. Starnes is an outsider of the Caner family who never knew Braxton. He knows NOTHING about the facts. Yet he uses his prominence to throw stones of blame. His article doesn't help the Caner's in their grieving. A simple expression of condolence, and letting them know Todd is praying for them wasn't enough. Starnes had to go on the attack.

Making it worse, Starnes mis-characterized the last 4 years as "unrelenting critics...hunt[ing] him like prey." That is an absolutely ridiculous description of what has happened the last 4 years. There were a number of bloggers who felt it their Christian duty to expose the years of deception by Caner in churches all over our country. Two of them endured a year-long lawsuit from Caner both of which were thrown out of court. Starnes conveniently lumps all the critics of Caner together as "they". "THEY hunted him [Caner] like prey", Starnes said, then in July, "THEY found a new target - Ergun's teenage son".

Come on, Todd. Instead of lumping all of Caner's critics together as "they", why not at least be as clear as Peter Lumpkins was back on July 2nd - you are referring to none other than J.D. Hall. HE is the one who on July 2-3rd decided to bring Braxton Caner into his father's mess.

Go back and look at the tweets of J.D. Hall and the ensuing Twitter conversations in the July 2nd and 3rd time frame. The vast, vast majority of people engaging J.D. Hall called him out for being a bully and an idiot to engage a man's 15-year old son over his father's misdeeds. I publicly rebuked Hall on Twitter for being a "bully" and a "religious jerk", and I tweeted my agreement with Peter Lumpkins' post on July 2nd. As someone who has raised teens in the midst of the social media craze, it made me sick to my stomach to see Hall cite tweets by Caner's son as evidence of the "immorality surrounding Caner" and to try to embarrass Caner over his teenagers harmless tweets. But maybe the worst one of Hall's tweets was inviting Braxton to contact him, "...if you ever want to speak or seek truth about your dad, email me." How a man would tell a 15-year old to contact him so he could tell him the terrible things his dad has done, is beyond me. It is disgusting.

But having said all of this about J.D. Hall, to now to even insinuate based on these July 2-3 tweets of Hall's that he is to any degree responsible for the tragedy of Braxton taking his life, is despicable. There may be more to the story involving Hall - that is possible - but to begin laying blame at Hall's feet or any other bloggers' feet even before Braxton's memorial service is just as despicable if people were to begin to lay blame Ergun Caner or his family for Braxton taking his life. It is needless, senseless, and it is sick.

I expect much better from a man like Todd Starnes.

144 comments:

Anonymous said...

Some of the more emotional types will no doubt claim this post is "insensitive", and I mean no offense, but I haven't read anything which if true conclusively establishes his death as a suicide. I am not in any way accusing anyone of deception or wrongdoing. I am simply pointing out that I haven't read any news story referencing what you often read about when an unexpected death occurs. Was there a coroner's investigation or an autopsy? If there is conclusive evidence out there about how he died then of course all of this is moot. But if people are going to start getting into speculation about why he committed suicide then it would seem the first step would be to establish that indeed the young man did intentionally take his own life.

Anonymous said...

I've tried to run down the origin of the reporting that his death was a suicide, and I can't trace it back to any official pronouncement by any investigative agency. All I've found are citations to "reports on social media" and "reports which have been made public." The Brewton Parker release did not mention suicide. His obituary doesn't state that he committed suicide but does request donations to suicide prevention in lieu of flowers.

I suspect that indeed there is conclusive proof that he committed suicide. Does anyone know?

Anonymous said...

Starnes is an idiot who was manipulated by Caner. Period. No one hunted his son and stalked him like prey. Really? And even if he did, why was the 15-year-old boy left alone so much while his dad traveled his comedy tour. IF I were to find blame, and I am not looking to, I would start at Caner himself. And so should Starnes.

chapmaned24 said...

Let's not be too harsh on Todd Starnes. At least the story is there, and it gives credence to the cyber bullying that took place. We all know that JD Hall is the one responsible. I am sure that Twitter accounts are being investigated, and I am sure that the twitter accounts being investigated are the ones involved, i.e. JD Hall, and JD Hall, and JD Hall, and anyone that JD Hall included, i.e. Braxton, and Ergun.

And, for what it's worth, today is August 4. JD Hall has NOT tweeted since July 29. That is very telling for a person that tweets several times a day, everyday. No doubt he is laying low...no doubt that he is shaking in his cowboy hat, wondering if he will be arrested for cyberbullying. He did take the 4th of July weekend off, but JD Hall otherwise tweets every single day.

Ed Chapman

Bennett Willis said...

If Mr. Starnes commentary is what is coming, it won't be pretty--or helpful or anything useful.

You are correct that J.D. got little support (and none from any names I knew).

EC's behavior was a family problem in the sense that it affects the whole group. Hopefully it was a matter of family discussion.

Anonymous said...

Ed,

He shouldn't be worried about being arrested for anything because he didn't commit any crime. At least, the public Twitter posts cannot possibly constitute a crime. Contrary to what a lot of people apparently believe, it is not a crime to disseminate distasteful, even despicable, content online, even if it leads someone to do something detrimental as a result. While some states have enacted so-called "cyberstalking" and "cyberbullying" statutes, all of the statutes I've seen require some sort of threat of harm to be made. I'm not saying that there isn't some statute out there which may seem to require only harassment, but I believe such a statute would be of questionable constitutionality, being violative of the First Amendment.

Michael said...

I would disagree with the idea that JD Hall is "shaking in his cowboy hat". While I don't know JD that well, i do read his blog/Tweets often, I do know that he posted an update to a blog post that isn't available at this time. Before it's absence is attributed to fear or something else, I would say that the post was about Caner and it was removed out of respect for what Caner is going through.

I think that was JD did was foolish, and I believe he recognized that. We have no idea if he's contacted the Caners to apologize or not. To speculate about any of this is just that - speculation. JD can speak for himself and I'm sure he will when he's ready...

As for Todd Starnes, he should be ashamed. The "story" is not there.It is a severe distortion of what has happened that ignores years of facts. I wrote to Mr. Starnes and added a link to James White's explanation of the "story". As a journalist who has put himself up as a defender of Christian liberties, Starnes should have checked the facts before he wrote. He should know better. What he wrote had more in common with the type of stuff that he writes against than the stuff that he writes...

New BBC Open Forum said...

Get out the pitchforks. I can see it coming now, but I can no longer remain silent. I'm not interested in discussion. I'm stating my opinion and moving on.

Todd Starnes of the "Chicken Little -- the sky is falling!" club? Doesn't surprise me in the least. His ridiculous Facebook post has received over 500 comments so far, almost all supportive of him and Caner with many of them blaming J.D. Hall for the tragic death of this child. I lump Starnes in with James Dobson, Tony Perkins, and even Jim Bakker to some extent and organizations like the FRC whose intentions sound good, but they exaggerate and twist stories to fit their agenda. Starnes himself has been quoted as saying he likes "to spice it up a little bit" to generate reader interest.

So what would you expect from the likes of people (FRC is James Dobson's baby) who hire Josh Duggar, oldest kid of TLC's 19 Kids and Counting, as their "executive director"? His education consists of a GED which he earned through homeschooling taught by his breed-mare mother. His work experience consists of "running" a used car lot. So with those glowing credentials the FRC pays him a nice 6-figure salary and moves him and his wife and 3 pre-school children (with #4 likely to be announced any day now) to DC, proving once again it's not what you know, it's who you know.

But I digress. Starnes conveniently ignores all that Caner has said and done the past 13 years, the lies, the ridiculous lawsuits (and the outcomes thereof including the judge's severe "spanking" of Caner for his nefarious motives), and once again mischaracterizes exposing Caner's lies as "hunting him like prey."

He also doesn't know what prompted the boy to commit suicide. I doubt anyone does and maybe never will. Somehow I don't think it was J.D. Hall's barbs though. That may have been a tiny factor in the end, but this kid had much deeper issues than being asked a few questions on Twitter by a grown man. Unless there were PMs that went a lot farther than the public tweets I read, they do not rise to the level of "cyber-bullying." Hall should not have engaged a minor. Period. But to say that the tweets we've all read drove this boy to the point of suicide is ludicrous.

Braxton Caner had an old Twitter account (@braxtoncaner) with the "about me" quote: "I'm here for a good, not a long time." Yes, I realize that's a song lyric, but I find it disturbing coming from a then-13-year-old child. Could this have been a red flag as long as 2 or 3 years ago? Even if it is a song quote, that could be interpreted as him saying he wouldn't be around long so he wanted to experience what days he had remaining to the fullest. If I were a parent or friend and saw a kid make that quote, I'd be concerned. Did no one ever read that and think there just might be a problem?

Aletheia said...

We can't expect better from Todd Starnes because he's a member of the Religious Right. (and I'm a Conservative Christian saying this)

The Religious Right seems to have problems with engaging facts, logic and reasoning. It's much easier to be emotional and engage in lynch mob mentality. Accusations are being based upon feelings, grief and even anger.....not FACT.

I completely agree with Poster #1 - Anonymous. We have not seen all of the facts. We only know what we've been told, not based upon any official investigative report at this point.

Plus, the entire exchange between JD Hall and Braxton was done in a public social media forum. Again, this was public. It was probably a 5 - 10 minute exchange. This was close to a month ago. There were no threats. None. In JD's first tweet, he addressed BOTH Braxton and Ergun Caner at the same time. It appears that Ergun Caner chose not to be involved.

According to Caner's tweet after the tragedy, there were no answers and there was NO NOTE. However, that didn't stop Caner's supporters and other members of the Religious Right from engaging in gross speculation and emotional accusations on Twitter.

They scream "cyber-bullying". Of course, it's much easier to join the endless "victim mentality" in our culture than to engage in solid, verifiable FACTS.



Anonymous said...

Looks like the Dog is trying to cover his rear end...

chapmaned24 said...

Anonymous @ 11:54 am said:
"He shouldn't be worried about being arrested for anything because he didn't commit any crime."

My response:
I wouldn't be so sure about that. He cyber bullied a minor. They are not friends connected to each other. They are not related to each other. Braxton, a minor, was being harassed by an adult, JD Hall.

I find it hard to believe that you think that he didn't commit a crime.

There are laws against being a cyber bully.

Ed Chapman

Arce said...

If any (at most one?) blogger has any, however minuscule, responsibility in this matter, Ergun Caner has more. Why? Because if he had not spent most of his young son's life living a very large lie, then there would have been no blogger activity complaining about the lies and false life Ergun was living. Cause and Effect. No lies by Ergun, no blogging about his lies!

Bennett Willis said...

I read some of the writing that Mr. Starnes has done and don't think I would have expected anything more from him than what he put up. He is not attached to facts. In that respect I would have expected better from him.

Anonymous said...

Popcorn! Get your popcorn!!
Cold drinks! Popcorn!! Cotton candy!!!

Anonymous said...

Maybe the boy read the harsh things the judge said about his father's lawsuits? Maybe the SACS accreditation issues? Shame on the judge and SACS, right Starnes?

Mark said...

Suicide is just awful. Unless there was a suicide note, will we ever really know what the cause was? Doubtful. Just as doubtful is that it was just one thing. Was his girlfriend breaking up with him? Was the scandal surrounding his father taking a toll? Was he suffering from diagnosed depression?
Life is short. Love your kids. I don't doubt EC loved his son very much.

Anonymous said...

"They wrote terrible things about the 15-year-old - beyond the pale. It was theological thuggery."

Unless there are some non-public communications out there which Todd starnes has been made privy to (I doubt it), this statement is just flat dishonest. I don't know of any blog post, tweet, or other communication which stated anything which could fairly be so described. JD Hall's Twitter convo with him was distasteful but he said nothing which attacked the young man's character. I would also note that Braxtons response to Hall was hardly consistent with being so devastated by it that he didn't want to live anymore. Frankly, it is ludicrous to claim that this exchange caused his suicide.

Anonymous said...

Starnes hit the nail on the head. Good for him! I'm thankful for real journalists like him.

Anonymous said...

Per one of your previous comments, I thought you were going to allow the Caner situation alone to let the family grieve. What happened?

Anonymous said...

The ones I have felt the most pity on - throughout EC's twisty-turny preaching, authoring and academic careers - are his wife and children.

Starnes may be missing well over 50% of the facts.

cb scott said...

Tom Rich,

This post is the best reenactment of a Pontius Pilate "hand washing" I have ever encountered.

Anonymous said...

Mr Scott,

Do you know the physical means by which Braxton died? Do you know how it is know that he intentionally took his own life? These are sincere questions I'm seeking answers to. Any info you have would be appreciated.

WishIhadknown said...

My sympathy and condolences to the Caner family in the grievous time of loss.

Thy Peace said...

A little about Todd Starnes :

Evangelical Persecution Complex

For example, Todd Starnes, a popular commenter on the network, recently published God Less America, purporting to expose the “Attack on Traditional Values.” Starnes has built a career almost exclusively based on reporting alleged incidences of Christian and conservative persecution. But his work almost always offers a skewed vision of religious liberty in the U.S.—he often exaggerates or omits facts. Earlier in his career, he was fired from the Baptist Press for reporting “factual and contextual errors.” Yet, his continues to be enormously influential—as I wrote last year, “Starnes sells us what we want to hear. We want to believe that we are the underdog. And Starnes sells us that story, wrapped in language of patriotism and faith.”

Arce said...

I have sympathy for the Caner family. But when people like Starnes start pointing fingers, it takes the dress gloves off and puts the boxing gloves on for anyone worth the effort to post.

Anonymous said...

Thy Peace,

Thanks for sharing this about Mr. Starnes. I'd personally never heard of him. Based on what I've read now it looks like what he did here is just one more case of shameless, intentional deception on his part. Dog, I'm not sure why you "expect better" from this clown, but if you read the things he's written in the past I don't think you will anymore.

Tom Parker said...

CB:

Why must you find someone(s) to blame for this tragedy?

Will it ever be known what the facts are about the death of Braxton?

Anonymous said...

Tom - Starnes was at least fair and he states the facts, along with stated opinion, and leaves the rest to conclusion.

I think that it is despicable that you would conclude that the family of this young man requested the writing of this article.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Anon 8:00 AM

You said:

"I think that it is despicable that you would conclude that the family of this young man requested the writing of this article."

Please read the first line of Starnes' article. Those are his words. Starnes said he shared his article at the request of the Caners.

Anonymous said...

Ergun Caner's critics have been silent. They've been respectful. If they were the brood of horrific people that they are painted to be, they would be using this as a weapon, but they are not...

The ONLY people that have opened their big fat mouths and have used this, and have abused this situation are the people that call themselves friends of Ergun Caner. I have one word for you, SHAME. Shame on you. SHUT UP! GROW UP! Get a heart, and get a brain, and put the two of them together.

James White

I couldn't have said it any better, so I just quoted James White on this.

New BBC Open Forum said...

Starnes was at least fair and he states the facts....

Am I the only one who finds it suspect that of the almost 600 comments on FB in response to Starnes' "fair and factual" article that not one single comment is remotely critical of Ergun Caner? Many of them have already condemned J.D. Hall to hell for "cyber-bullying" this child to death. One in particular stated the "attacker" was already being measured for a millstone.

I really find it beyond belief that not one person pointed out Ergun Caner's decade of deceit and that the story of his son's tragic death would not have been mentioned outside his church and circle of friends and family had his FATHER not been found guilty in a court of law of being a serial liar.

I think that it is despicable that you would conclude that the family of this young man requested the writing of this article.

Uhhh... these are Todd Starnes' own words:

Note: The Caner family asked me to share my commentary with you. I am honored to do so.

No conclusion necessary. That was stated as fact.

Ps John Waller said...

Beyond J D Hall's unwise but scarcely bullying tweets do the critics have any other evidence to support a claim of "theological thuggery" against this boy?

i know of no one else who made any approaches to him at all whilst several rebuked Hall for doing so.

Do I sense that certain people are planning a reprise of their Servetus routine?

Anonymous said...

BBC & others,

Starnes is deleting comments. I left one expressing condolences, but also pleading with everyone to hear both sides of the story and research who the boy's father is.

My comment was deleted, my account was blocked & reported, and I received several nasty private messages from Starnes' followers.

Anonymous said...

http://mepublic.tarrantcounty.com/mepublic/Default.aspx

J Pow said...

You expected better from Fox News?

Really?!

When I heard the news about the tragic suicide, my cynical first though was, "Those people rightfully being called out on blogs will use this to discredit and silence critics."

I really hope that's not the case, but I'm already starting to see it.

Aletheia said...

To Anonymous 8/5 at 1:04 p.m.
(Re: Todd Starnes's supporters/commenters)

That's exactly the way the Religious Right (Fundamentalists) operate. They are NOT interested in truth. They're interested in whipping everyone into an emotional frenzy. That's how they control people. Unfortunately, most folks never figure this out.

These are the same people (just like the Progressive Liberals) who vote in publicly-questioned politicians, only to complain about the unethical legislation.

There are many kids/teenagers who have had corrupt parents with a LOT of media attention and publicity with constant reporting.

Such as: Chelsea Clinton, Malia & Sasha Obama, any child connected to the Kennedy dynasty, Jim Bakker's kids, Paul Crouch's family, etc. etc. Well.....you get my point.

So, are we to say that if any teenager of a political or religious celebrity takes their own life, then it is automatically the fault of public discussion about their parent's actions????

Has anyone ever listened to the discussions on FOX, CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC ?????

Has anyone ever read the Drudge Report or Daily Mail ?????

So, if any of these news organizations or websites reports the questionable actions of someone who happens to be a parent, then if the child takes their own life, it's the fault of the news organization???? Are you serious?

Welcome to the rationality of the Religious Right.

Anonymous said...

I think Todd Starnes was quite accurate in his assessment.

Brian M. said...

Defensive much?

I think by common interpretation Starnes may have been defending bloggers when he brought up what was likely on everyone's mind. He simply said "we do not know...".

Based on that, you say he's "insunating"?

And then based on that, go on to call it an "attack"?

See, that's why I'm done with this blog. And JD Hall. And other's like you. You find someone to attack, selectively distort everything they say/do to support your attack, it gets out of hand, and then you give yourself grace in the process.

Distance yourself from Hall as much as you'd like, but the same spirit in him is in you.

Instead of all this work against Caner actually leading to anything honorable, a family's child is now dead. Your work is not fruitful or Christlike in any way I can see.

To those who call Him Lord, Jesus is our defense attorney, not our prosecutor.

Paul's ministry was not aimed at dissecting and shredding the words and ministries of others. On the contrary, he dissected himself. He said "I am the chief of sinners".

Maybe it's time to look inward, guys.

Anonymous said...

Yikes...reading all the Caner stuff is tossing me to and fro. So...aside from a tragic event...impacting the family beyond measure...we have 4,600 teenagers whom commit suicide each year, a staggering number...a number that should make us ALL pause and reflect about what drives teenagers to a death that now is the 3rd leading cause of death among the teen crowd...and it is reported that 16% have at one time or another contemplated it...prayers go out to all suffering families - most we will never hear of and most whom have quiet funerals that might include no one but a few family members...tears should flow (or as one complainer of blogs noted, "Jesus Wept")...in this particular instance with emotions high on both sides of the equation...the arguments as made time and time again over the years surround the issue of whether churches should allow a man in the pulpit whom has potentially lied and misrepresented himself to gain recognition. The facts are rather weighted against Ergun no doubt about that. (The old Mike Warnke stories are just one example of make believe). Personally, I find Caner's preaching style unbecoming in terms of Biblical standards...and assuming that the current rash of facts cannot be refuted...then I would lean toward making the sheep aware that the man is a wolf, and in many cases as noted by those whom have approached Caner, a bully. The father's actions have absolutely nothing to do with the son except in the case J.D. Hall went completely overboard and has made this something that now allows fingers to point in every which direction and fuel to some issues that divide many...my first inclination is to see if J.D. Hall repents and asks forgiveness. After all , he has demanded such from Caner. Meanwhile, as the family copes with an event that Pastor White points out will leave scars for the rest of their lives...we might as well be cautious and if Caner starts back at some point using the same false stories and then amplifies himself with his son's suicide over preaching Jesus/the Cross, then again, wise apologetics can confront this preacher man whom makes it about himself,not the one whom died for us. So...we have all spent substantial time talking about Braxton...what about the remaining 4,599 from the last 12 months?????

Tom Parker said...

Brian:

All I got out of your tirade was blame. Are you THE JUDGE?

Aletheia said...

Brian M. - August 5th at 2:45 pm.

ra·tion·ale
ˌraSHəˈnal/
noun
a set of reasons or a logical basis for a course of action or a particular belief.

I'm assuming that everyone who is insinuating that the bloggers who constantly reported on Caner's DECADE of lies and deceit, including his deceptive lawsuits..... and who they believe is responsible for this teenager's tragedy, have never read, commented on or been disgusted over the antics and unethical behavior of Clinton or Obama.

I'm sure you kept your feelings to yourself when the Clinton & Lewinsky scandal heated up in the 90's. I'm sure you didn't write or say anything, just in case a young Chelsea Clinton saw an extremely negative report on her dad.

The next time you are disgusted with and are tempted to comment on or sign an anti-Obama petition regarding his border fiasco, Obamacare or his executive orders, you need to think of Barack and Michelle's daughters, Malia and Sasha.

The next time you think about lashing out at Hillary Clinton over Benghazi, you need to think about her pregnant daughter Chelsea and soon-to-be grandchild.

The next time your local pastor does or says something that you disagree with, you need to think of his family when the gossip mill starts.

Sorry folks......it works both ways.

Tom Parker said...

I would love to know how many of the SBC Takeover crowd ever concerned themselves with the consequences of the Pastors and their wives and children when they lost their jobs by being labeled "liberal" and were fired from the churches they pastored and could not find another pastoring job and lost their income, health insurance, homes, marriages, etc.

Did it even cross these folks minds the consequences of their actions?

yeoberry said...

Thanks for this post. You're perhaps the first to go expose the absurdity of blaming bloggers and all of Caner's critics.

I personally asked JD Hall to take down the article about Ergun Caner's son and told him it was a distraction (trying to understate my objection). Hall was foolish to bring the son into the controversy but let's be clear: if Ergun Caner hadn't, first, built a career on deception and then refused to repent of it (and been enabled in that lack of repentance by Christian leaders and media), then Caner's children wouldn't have anything to be surprised by in their father's history.

If I recall correctly, James White speculated several months ago on "The Dividing Line" about the impact of the truth on Caner's children. Perhaps now we know.

Now this tragedy and JD Hall's foolishness are being used as another weapon to silence the truth about Caner. I note that the tyrants at "Wartburg Watch" have taken the bait, such is their love of attacking pastors.

The Govteach said...

Tom,
The SBC Takeover Crowd only care about themselves. They could care less about anyone they hurt, their kids, their wives, their husbands.
And they wonder why the SBC is dying a slow painful death?
As a friend of mine says about the SBC..." Jesus has left the building..."

Anonymous said...

Some of you don't seem to have a full understanding of what went on here. This isn't about the accusations against Ergun per se but that those like JD thought Braxton and his girlfriend became fair game because of Ergun. You might want to check out WartWatch which fills in more details that some of you seem to be missing. JD and Co attacked Braxton and his girlfriend on JD's blog and radio show.

yeoberry said...

@ Ed Chapman (chapmaned24),

Read Alethia's comments just two posts above yours.

While, as above, I believe Hall's involving Braxton was foolish (and I advised him to pull an article he wrote about it at the time), I doubt it rises to any legal definition of "harassment" or "cyber-bullying". First, it only consisted of a few (about three or a little more) messages. And it wasn't threatening. Normally, "harassment" would mean continued, negative messages subsequent to being told to stop.

When I once posted against Ergun Caner, I had an Ergun Caner defender and, I believe, past SBC vice-president (David Miller), repeatedly e-mail me, after being told to stop. I finally had to threaten to report him to his ISP before he ceased.

Aletheia said...

Obviously, church people who operate on irrationality and emotions instead of scriptures and facts do not want to admit that there are consequences for our sins. When anyone of us sins....ANY OF US......there are consequences. God has warned us over and over and over again.

However, today's modern culture believes that Christianity and the following of the Word of God and His laws is just a good idea, not necessarily a Word to live by 24/7. The Bible is handy when we want to refer to Obama as the antichrist. The Bible comes in handy when we vote against gay marriage or abortion. The Bible comes in handy when we want to talk about prosperity and materialism (especially our own prosperity).

The Bible is completely ignored when we sow bad seeds and reap a crop failure.

ca·lam·i·ty
kəˈlamitē/
noun
an event causing great and often sudden damage or distress; a disaster.

------
Proverbs 6: 12 - 19 (KJV)

12 A naughty person, a wicked man, walketh with a froward mouth.

13 He winketh with his eyes, he speaketh with his feet, he teacheth with his fingers;

14 Frowardness is in his heart, he deviseth mischief continually; he soweth discord.

15 Therefore shall his calamity come suddenly; suddenly shall he be broken without remedy.

16 These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto Him:

17 A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,

18 An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief,

19 A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.

------
We've read the Bible for years.

We took our Bibles to Sunday School and Morning Worship.

We bought the nice leather or quilted covers to be sure our Bibles were not torn or tattered.

We memorized the Bible verses in Children's Church.

We taught the Sunday School lessons and preached the sermons.

We quoted the scriptures of faith during times of sickness and unemployment.

However, when it comes to the laws of sowing and reaping or the wages of sin........

Do we REALLY believe the Word of God? Do we?

Anonymous said...

Wow - missed that. Not so despicable. That family believes that bloggers caused their son's death.

I think that everyone needs to take a beat on that one.

That is very revealing and possibly a prophesy of things to come. I bet the lawyers are warming up now. Certain bloggers are wishing that they acted out otherwise.

Dr. Jupiter aka Dr. J said...

Power and the Voice of Authority.

Has anyone noticed that in this tragedy, the deceased retains all the power? No note.
The young man excused everyone from the one thing everyone wants……the answer to the question, "Why?"

"No Answers."

Had the sadness been similar to Rick Warren's son, Matthew Warren, and his struggle with mental illness, there could have been that focus.
Had drugs been involved, the focus could shift to peer pressure, drug dealers and the oppressive nature of the drug culture.

But, the deceased chose to leave everyone holding the unknown. He retained all the power.

The deceased also retained the voice of authority. None of us who speak can speak with that voice. We can thunder, but it is just that, a temporary sound. The deceased made that determination.

Regardless of our deep feelings, theology, passions, friendships and conflicts, we can offer up only our opinions. Even when those opinions are driven by the depths of grief and the passion that sorrow brings, they are only opinions. Our anger will not find the answer.

At the core of this grief, the deceased rules.

May God have mercy on anyone who fails to respect or seeks to exploit this sacred silence.

chapmaned24 said...

I am simply appalled at MOST of the comments here. Most of you seem to be JUSTIFYING JD Hall's actions towards the MINOR CHILD, BASED ON WHO his father is. GROSS!

Peter lied 3 times. What did Jesus do about it? Did Jesus HOUND Peter to REPENT? Did Jesus DEMAND that he go to the three people that he lied to and tell them that he was sorry?

The sins of the father has nothing to do with that minor child.

BOUNDARIES! Before the internet, would any adult ever even consider to track down the minor child of a man for what his father did a long time ago?

Get over yourselves people. LET what Caner did GO.

Forgive Caner even if he never asks for forgiveness.

Jesus said, "Father Forgive them, for they know not what they do."

Did ANY of those who killed Jesus even ask to be forgiven?

Stephen asked Jesus to NOT lay the sin of stoning him upon them.

Did ANY of those who stoned Stephen even ask to be forgiven?

You people need to learn what boundaries are, and stop JUSTIFYING the actions of JD Hall for violating those boundaries.

Before the internet, NO ONE would have ever considered communicating with a minor to get back at the minors dad.

You people make me sick to my stomach for your justifications.

JD Hall should rot in jail.

Ed Chapman

Arce said...

I would point out that Ergun Caner brought children into the controversy over his falsehoods by demanding that one of the defendants in his suit have the defendant's PRESCHOOL children sign a commitment not to criticize Ergun ever. That was the straw that broke the possibility of a settlement and resulted in the total defeat of Caner re the lawsuit he filed. Two federal judges have said that he should not have sued and ordered him to pay the defendants' attorney fees.

Anonymous said...

Truth hurts WD. You and others like you are constantly harassing and tearing down. You are no better for the Kingdom than those you attack. Your hypocrisy is shameful.

An Attorney said...

Caner has learned about suing with less than substantial basis in law, evidence, and diligence wrt to both. And his resources for any possible suit are rather tied up paying lawyer fees and expenses to attorneys who represented the defendants. He even had one case negotiated to an effective win and lost by going over the top to seek assurances from pre-school children that they would never mention his lies or use his video to show how he had lied.

I think no one needs to fear a suit over this young man's tragic end. I think that proving causation would be difficult. If they went after those who pointed out the Caner lies, then the lies become the prime agent of causation not the calling out of the lies. If they went after only those who, some weeks before, communicated about a public tweet, the time lag alone would be hard to overcome. (The evidence is that suicidal teens act suddenly on impulse, not weeks after an insult.)

chapmaned24 said...

"Honey, do these pants make my butt look too big?"

How many men have lied about that one?

You are all hypocrites. You call out people for lying, and you know dog gone well that you all lie, too. Who hasn't, still to this day, lied. We all have, do, and will continue.

"How are you?"

"Fine"

If you really told the truth, you might have said, "Well, not so good, my back aches, I'm stressed out at work, etc., I have to eat my wife's cooking...yuk, etc."

Who hasn't lied...even to protect others, we all have lied.

You people need to stop hounding Ergun Caner, and stop justifying JD Halls actions.

MOVE ON! Find another Baptist to pick on who doesn't want to be a Calvinist.

Ed Chapman

Ed Chapman

Aletheia said...

Regarding the inconsistent and confusing Ed Chapman post - August 5th at 8:40 pm:

Ed, your theology is rather conflicted.

-------
According to the Ed Chapman post:

Forgive Caner even if he never asks for forgiveness.

Jesus said, "Father Forgive them, for they know not what they do."

Did ANY of those who killed Jesus even ask to be forgiven?


Now........again......according to the same Ed Chapman post:

JD Hall should rot in jail.
-------

What version of the Bible do you have, Ed?

The Ed Chapman Authorized Version?

Which version cherry picks who gets forgiveness?



G. Casey said...

I expected better class from Tom Rich in the midst of loss. There is a time and blog post for everything.

Nicholas said...

@cb scott

Are you trying to blame a suicide on FBC JAX Watchdog? If so, you would need to substantiate that rather than leave a one-sentence driveby comment. But you won't, because you can't.

It should be noted that when Debbie Kaufmann published her first blog post on the Ergun Caner story in 2010, cb scott showed up in the comment section to call her and her post "depraved" (his word). Debbie's blog is gone now so I can't provide the link.

And now Scott is trying to blame the tragic death of Braxton Caner on the owner of this blog. Scott has crossed the line much further than Starnes. I don't know whether Scott's comment should be deleted or left up to show what a wicked, hate-filled fundamentalist he is, all while posing as a "man of God."

Tom Kelley said...

Hall had no business engaging Caner's son. I have yet to see anyone who says otherwise.

That plainly said, it seems to me that much of the defense of Caner is largely an expression of anti-Calvinist sentiment. Caner is a vocal opponent to Calvinism in the SBC, as are most of his defenders, and they have consistently promoted the false narrative that Caner's critics are evil, mean Calvinists who want to destroy Caner's ministry because he preaches against Calvinism.

And now that same narrative is being applied to the death of Caner's son, even thought there is zero evidence to support speculations of a connection between his son's death and Caner's critics. That Caner would approve of Starnes' article, which implies such a connection, demonstrates just how much animosity Caner and his supporters hold toward those who have attempted to hold him accountable for his lies.

Nicholas said...

@yeoberry 5:18pm

You've borne false witness against the Wartburg Watch and made the same false accusations against them that trolls make against Watchdog all the time. They do not "hate pastors", nor do they desire to "cover up the truth" about Ergun Caner's fictional life story, which they wrote about in the past.

TWW is in Watchdog's blogroll btw, so I find it odd that you would pit the two blogs against each other.

I also find it troubling that you and others seem to remain preoccupied with Ergun Caner after what has happened.

Anonymous said...

You people need to learn what boundaries are, and stop JUSTIFYING the actions of JD Hall for violating those boundaries.

You people make me sick to my stomach for your justifications.

JD Hall should rot in jail.

Ed Chapman
_________________________________

Hey Ed, I will apply what you wrote to J.D. Hall. Re-read what you wrote in defense of Ergun. Does it apply to J.D. Hall. Do what also just forgive him and move on? Or just Ergun while J.D. rots in hell. You are the one that makes me sick.

August 5, 2014 at 8:40 PM

Anonymous said...

Is it okay to let the Bible speak? You do all believe the Bible is true, don't you? And that is applies to us, doesn't us? So here it is, without commentary:

Exodus 34:7 ESV

Keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the children's children, to the third and the fourth generation.”

Exodus 20:1-26 ESV

And God spoke all these words, saying,...shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children...

Anonymous said...

TWW has done some good work in the past, but they are way off with this recent post on Braxton's death. It is, frankly, ludicrous for them or anyone else to conclude that JD Hall or anyone else who wrote something about Braxton online contributed in any way to his death. The public does not know why he may have committed suicide, and quite likely not even his family knows. Furthermore, I haven't even seen any statement of any investigative agency that he indeed intentionally killed himself. So, we don't even know why some unknown person or persons concluded it was suicide and reported on the internet that he committed suicide. I'm pointing this out simply to show the amount of extreme speculation going on here that needs to stop.

Aletheia said...

Watchdog,

If you're not comfortable with posting this, I completely understand. I won't send a direct link. However, people are asking questions.

It is public information that anyone can find. It's a matter of Texas public record.

Google this: Tarrant County Medical Examiner. On the record, choose Parker County and input July 29, 2014. Scroll toward the bottom. The answer is there.

New BBC Open Forum said...

Anonymous 10:31 a.m.:

Go here and do a search for July 29, 2014. Do a search on that page for "Caner." It's there.

Anonymous said...

Thanks New BBC, this is what I'd been looking for to confirm that indeed he committed suicide. However, as stated previously, we have no idea whether anything any Caner critics communicated to him had anything at all to do with his decision to take his life.

yeoberry said...

@ Nicholas,

You've borne false witness that I've borne false witness.

TWW does like to attack pastors, especially Bible-believing ones. It's also hypocritical, accusing others of being "abusive" and oppressive when people who express different points of view there are routinely censored or banned.

Does anyone who knows TWW think that if one of Mark Driscoll's children was found saying something on-line that TWW disapproved of that they would not have behaved just like JD Hall, or worse?

I find it disturbing that you and other Canerites are cynically using this tragedy to do what Caner's frivolous law-suits couldn't do: silence the truth-tellers.

yeoberry said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
yeoberry said...

"An Attorney" (above: August 5, 2014 10:40 PM)

Makes two important, salient points:

1. "If they went after those who pointed out the Caner lies, then the lies become the prime agent of causation not the calling out of the lies."
That is, even if it is proved that those who pointed out Ergun Caner's history of lies were a cause of the teens apparent suicide, then it is Ergun's lies that are the ultimate cause, not those who made them know. If Ergun Caner had built a career on lies, then there would have been no scandal to provoke the teen to take his own life, if indeed that's what happened. That means it's those like Todd Starnes who enabled Caner to go years after being exposed but to still live in denial to create an environment where Caner's children may have discovered the truth on-line.

2. "If they went after only those who, some weeks before, communicated about a public tweet, the time lag alone would be hard to overcome. (The evidence is that suicidal teens act suddenly on impulse, not weeks after an insult.)"

It's not likely that someone commits suicide after a brief on-line encounter almost a full month earlier.

This is the kind of sensible analysis the censors of TWW will not tolerate.

yeoberry said...

"An Attorney" (above: August 5, 2014 10:40 PM) makes two important, salient points:

1. "If they went after those who pointed out the Caner lies, then the lies become the prime agent of causation not the calling out of the lies."
That is, even if it is proved that those who pointed out Ergun Caner's history of lies were a cause of the teens apparent suicide, then it is Ergun's lies that are the ultimate cause, not those who made them known. If Ergun Caner had not built a career on lies, then there would have been no scandal to provoke the teen to take his own life, if indeed that's what happened. That means it's those like Todd Starnes who enabled Caner to go years after being exposed but still live in denial who created an environment where Caner's children may have discovered the truth on-line.

2. "If they went after only those who, some weeks before, communicated about a public tweet, the time lag alone would be hard to overcome. (The evidence is that suicidal teens act suddenly on impulse, not weeks after an insult.)"

It's not likely that someone commits suicide after a brief on-line encounter almost a full month earlier.

This is the kind of sensible analysis the censors of TWW will not tolerate.

Nicholas said...

@yeoberry

If you had even carefully read my comment, you would see that I am not a "Canerite".

The only ones I see on this thread cynically using this tragedy for their own political ends are you and cb scott.

Especially since you took the opportunity to attack TWW for attacking "Bible-believing pastors" that you like (as if Mahaney and Driscoll are Bible-believers).

Comments left on this blog over the years accusing Watchdog of "attacking pastors" are innumerable now. It's a bogus charge both here and against TWW.

And now you libel TWW by claiming that they would do to Mark Driscoll's kids what JD Hall did? You should be ashamed.

Nicholas said...

Just figured out who "yeoberry" is. He's John Carpenter: http://www.covenantcaswell.org/

Carpenter was the guy who trolled Warren Throckmorton's blog when the Mark Driscoll plagiarism story first broke. He denied any guilt on Driscoll's part and even went so far as to accuse anyone who disagreed of being unsaved. Carpenter even got an article of his deleted from Christian Post because of his abusive behavior toward commenters and even the mods.

I note that Carpenter's website contains a video of Mark Dever and a link to 9Marks. Watchdog wrote a post about both a while back: http://fbcjaxwatchdog.blogspot.com/2012/02/church-discipline-of-critic-you-get-it.html

Unknown said...

yeoberry at 3:06pm wrote: "Does anyone who knows TWW think that i one of Mark Driscoll's children was found saying something on-line that TWW disapproved of that they would not have behaved just like JD Hall, or worse?"

Was it you, then, who asked that question over at TWW? Anyone beside yeoberry, who already knows the answer but shamelessly pretends that he doesn't, can find several answers to that question over there, including mine, which is Patrice over there.

Anonymous said...

"You've borne false witness that I've borne false witness."

LOL....sometimes Christianese makes me laugh.

Arce said...

Yeoberry,

You lie! TWW has studiously avoided negativity about any child. They have dealt with abusive pastors regardless of the theology, whether neo-Cal or otherwise. Now some commenters on the TWW site may have attacked abusive pastors on one side of the theological spectrum and ignored abusive pastors on the other side, but not the bloggers themselves. Three issues dominate and it matters not to either Dee or Deb whether the pastor involved is neo-Cal, Arminian, or other. Those issues are child abuse and it being covered up by the church, misuse of the Bible to justify abuse of women, and abuse of the laity by pastors misusing the Bible to do so. If you think that they target one side or another, that is because you are sensitive to the number of miscreants on your side of a particular theological divide!!! Three fingers of your four are pointing back at you in this.

Anonymous said...

yeoberry said...

"TWW does like to attack pastors, especially Bible-believing ones."

Wartburg Watch blog only posts about ABUSIVE "Bible believing pastors." You know, men who work as preachers but who do things like (but not limited to), cover up child sexual abuse in churches, bully teens on Twitter accounts, financially exploit their church members, etc.

Seems many of these "Bible believing pastors" you are defending are actually what that Bible would refer to as "Wolves in Sheeps clothing" or "false teachers," and that same Bible says that Christians are to weed such out and call them out.

Are you a fan and supporter of false teachers and wolves in sheeps clothing? It sure sounds like it to me.

Anonymous said...

There's just no way that JD Hall's very brief interaction with Braxton on Twitter was the primary causal factor in causing him to take his own life. The exchange was inappropriate, even despicable, but nothing was said which would cause the kid to decide that life was not worth living, almost a month later. Did the ongoing criticism of his father contribute? Possibly, though if so probably more indirectly by causing family tensions, and even this is pure speculation. This is not to say that I believe the criticism of Caner has been wrong or shouldn't have been made. Unfortunately, criticism of a public figure and prominent leader in the Christian community can't be withheld simply because it might hurt his family. This would obviously end all criticism of any individual who has a family.

That said, perhaps it's time to let go of the Caner issue, at least until such time as Caner does something else to warrant criticism. What he's done is out there and it's not going away. I don't see any need to keep beating that drum. I personally don't believe he's disqualified for any ministry position just because he's lied about his background and has refused to publicly admit he lied. And in any event, I don't really see the utility of continuing to demand that he do so.

Anonymous said...

There are so many questions surrounding this that aren't being asked.

Kids have a way of knowing the truth, about a lot of things, and usually far beyond what adults give them credit for.

Anonymous said...

I have followed this blog off and on for a long time. Generally I agree with much of what you write. But this post is just tasteless and reprehensible. Regardless of whether you are a Caner fan or not, there should a level of respect for the grieving family. Who the hell are you to try to defend yours or anyone's attacks before the body is cold in the ground? Why don't you take the high ground and say, "Regardless of our opinion of Ergun Caner, he is still a father, and we grieve with him in the passing of his son." And by the way the idiots on the board who question whether he committed suicide because it wasn't in the obituary - get a life - it is NEVER in the obituary. You all really need to get a life or stop thinking everything in the world revolves around you. Idiots ALL!

Anonymous said...

I don't recall any of their children being attacked or harassed in a public forum. Do you think it would be tolerated by fair minded Americans who dislike President Obama that his 15 year old daughter would be publicly harassed. NO! You are on the wrong side of this and should be ashamed.

Aletheia said...

The thing that disturbs me with today's modern Christian culture is their uncompromising gullibility and the need to base everything upon emotions, reacting with irrational fervor. Facts have taken a backseat to dramatic displays of outrage.

Once again, JD did not threaten the young man. It was a short, probably 5 - 10 minute exchange on a PUBLIC FORUM.

Attention Parents, Grandparents and Guardians:
Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, Pinterest, Instagram and all social media is PUBLIC.

I have a really good idea. If you don't want certain people communicating with your teenager or child, keep them off of social media until they're 18 years old. How's that for a novel idea?

People want to scream attack, harrassment and bullying. People want to point fingers of blame.
NO ONE wants to take responsibility that maybe teenagers aren't a good fit for places like Twitter.

Twitter is a completely uncensored forum. Twitter is full of people from all over the world. Twitter is full of all political and religious persuasions. Twitter is full of companies, artists, musicians and Hollywood celebrities, to include rappers who only have the command of one word, the "F" word. This doesn't even begin to include the porn accounts on Twitter.

Has anyone asked the following questions?

1. Had Adderall been prescribed for him? Check the side effects.

2. Are illegal drugs out of the question?

3. How much time did he spend by himself without supervision?

4. Was the firearm in a locked case?

5. Had there been any girlfriend issues?

6. Was he emotionally tormented over something at school?

7. Was boredom an issue (a reason listed for teenage suicide)?

If someone does not leave a note, there is truly NO WAY to know exactly what prompts a tragic decision. It's sad beyond sad. It's tragic beyond tragic. My heart breaks just thinking about it. I can't imagine what the parents must be going through.

However, for a group of Christian people to literally "lose their collective minds" over a few non-threatening tweets is nothing short of lynch mob mentality. Even if you think it was inappropriate for JD to engage him, it's ridiculous to scream "bullying" over a 5-minute exchange that did not include actual threats.

Anonymous said...

@ Aletheia said...

"Once again, JD did not threaten the young man. It was a short, probably 5 - 10 minute exchange on a PUBLIC FORUM."

It was rude, obnoxious, creepy and weird for a grown man to contact the 15 year old son of some guy he has issues with.

What do you not get about that?

How about I look up J D Hall's daughters on Twitter and tweet them quasi- menacing or harassing comments about their behavior, their personal photos, or basically telling them their father is an obnoxious jack ass, and to contact me for more information on that?

If you have a problem with another adult (eg, Ergun Caner) take it up with Caner directly, don't go to his kids.

*EVEN IF* Ergun Caner dragged other people's kids into the fray in the past in regards to other skirmishes, two wrongs don't make a right.

It's not an excuse for Hall to contact Caner's kids to raz them, criticize them - whether for their behavior or that of their dad.

Stop excusing and defending Hall over all this. He must know he fumbled big, because he's been staying off Twitter ever since this blew up. I take that as an admission by him he knows he screwed up big time.

Arce said...

Anonymous said...
August 6, 2014 at 9:24 PM

said we should hold fire about Ergun and let the family grieve. But the Caners have violated that general principal by asking a reporter to put forth a false story with lots of theo-political implications. Want to blame someone for the blogosphere going into hyperdrive about this? Look exactly at Ergun Caner.

Matt said...

Along with the blog post by JD Hall

there were 5 other people that were harassing Braxton over twitter

@pulpitandpen - JD Hall
@perfectpith - (deleted, but traces back to someone name Ted Beam),
@_vendlerius - Kenneth C. Vendler
@Fred_Butler - Fred Butler
@Shinar_Squirrel - Gene Clyatt
@RichardCPierce - Richard C Pierce (President - Alpha and Omega Ministries)

Now, if nothing was wrong or over the line, then why do we have people changing twitter account names, deleting tweets and why did JD Hall get rid of the blog post?

Nothing they say or do can justify bringing the child in to this -

Anonymous said...

Rhology defended J D Hall many times on twitter.
Great comment I read tonight

Robin on Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 11:30 PM said:
JD Hall and all the other fellows who contacted this boy through twitter in the past had no authority over him even in a spiritual sense. In fact, since all of these men probably adhere to some form of the 9 Marks system, can I assume that they believe that one’s local pastor has such authority over a teen in his church but, another pastor does not. Case in point, they won’t let you leave their church without their permission. So, if that is true and B Caner was not part of one of their congregations, where does their authority come from? Who decided that B Caner was put under the umbrella of their guidance and shepherding? I am not trying to be ugly. I actually would like to know how men who are Reformed and hold to a very strict form of church governance came to believe that B Caner was under their church umbrella for discipline? I think this is a fair question to ask.
As far as my opinion goes (which is worth very little) it seems that an obsession over E Caner must have festered to a point to where any dirt they could find on him or his household would be able to farther prove their point that E Caner was not truthful and was unfit for ministry. Sometimes in our quest for the truth (even in our being right) we can turn that noble quest into something heinous and self serving. I have no idea why this boy committed suicide. As a mother of one boy and another on the way, I am given great pause as I think about the turmoil that boy suffered for whatever reason. I know that E Caner has many enemies, and based upon what I have read, he doesn’t seem that he was all that honest (to put it mildly). I know these men who have assigned his son to hell believe that they are on a crusade for TRUTH. Yet, it hurts me to think that perhaps an enemy of mine, out there, would use social media as a way to contact my son in an effort to farther his agenda in criticizing me, even if I am in the wrong. It saddens me to think that my enemies could use twitter, facebook, or a blog to pronounce anathema to my boy, to publicly assign my boy his corner in hell. All because they claim I am a deceiver. Would my enemies say that one of their dead children who tragically died at his or her own hand were in hell? Or, would they excuse it away as a lapse or a mental illness so severe he or she had no clue what he or she was doing? Would my enemies console one another as one of them were found out to be in some great sin? or would they take to social media in order to call out one another? The way I see it, there is lots of covering up and excusing when the vocally reformed find their way into a tight spot. The way I see it, the Reformed men who call themselves Truly Reformed or the YRR publicly go after those not affiliated with them but, when one of their own has his own sins made known, well then it’s time to go to them “privately.” Of course since they aren’t using social media to call out their own in sin, who knows what is really said in private, if anything. Lord have mercy on us all. I find myself so angry at times with the YRR, 9 Marks crowd. I get so angry at their callousness but, as I type I wonder would I truly be hurting for them if their son or daughter died in a way that was either through self infliction or in a way that exposed them to be something other than the parents thought? Or would I take to social media to say “see what happens when you act legalistic?” Immediately calling blame out on those poor suffering parents. I pray to God that I would have compassion. The cycle of blame and accusation doesn’t seem to point anyone to Christ. Not really. Everyone’s mind is already made up anyway when it comes to internet attacks. It’s just a bunch of internet voices screaming over each other day in and day out. Poor E Caner. Lord have mercy on you and your family. Please Lord come quickly.

New BBC Open Forum said...

Attention Parents, Grandparents and Guardians:

Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, Pinterest, Instagram and all social media is PUBLIC.

I have a really good idea. If you don't want certain people communicating with your teenager or child, keep them off of social media until they're 18 years old. How's that for a novel idea?


Amen, amen, amen! Thank you for providing one of the few voices of reason in all this.

What has happened to parental responsibility? Everyone is a "victim" in today's litigious society. In the past week I have seen more emotional pearl-clutching over a brief, non-threatening Twitter exchange and some fabricated perceived connection thereof to the tragic suicide of a 15-year-old boy than over any story in recent memory. No, a grown man should not have addressed a 15-year-old like that, but if you're going to post stuff on the internet, you'd better be big enough to deal with whatever fallout occurs. That's true whether you're 45 or 15. The difference is if you're 15 that's what you've got parents for. All the while few are looking at the one reason said 15-year-old's name was ever on the radar screen in the first place.

Some of the things you listed would be purely speculation on anyone's part but the family's and perhaps their medical advisors (nor would it be anyone's business but theirs), but I would hope the family and authorities are exploring all possibilities. And yes, that includes the possibility of private cyber-bullying. Real, threatening bullying, not the silly public exchange we all saw.

Something else that was mentioned on TWW today which was surprisingly ignored over there was that in Texas parents can be charged with a misdemeanor in a case like this.

It is against the law to allow a child under 17 unsupervised access to a loaded firearm.

Texas Law: Texas Penal Code - Making a Firearm Accessible to a Child

* A person commits an offense if a child gains access to a readily dischargeable firearm and the person with criminal negligence:

o failed to secure the firearm; or

o left the firearm in a place to which the person knew or should have known the child would gain access.

* It is an affirmative defense to prosecution under this section that the child's access to the firearm:

o was supervised by a person older than 18 years of age and was for hunting, sporting, or other lawful purposes;

o consisted of lawful defense by the child of people or property;

o was gained by entering property in violation of this code; or

o occurred during a time when the actor was engaged in an agricultural enterprise.

* Except as provided by the subsection directly below, an offense under this section is a Class C misdemeanor.

* An offense under this section is a Class A misdemeanor if the child discharges the firearm and causes death or serious bodily injury to himself or another person.
(Bolding mine.)

Now, I do NOT think the parents in this case should be charged with any crime (heaven knows they've already paid the ultimate price), but the importance of keeping weapons out of the hands of unsupervised minors can never be overstated.

Aletheia said...

To: BBC Open Forum on August 7th at 3:01 a.m.

Regarding your comment:

"What has happened to parental responsibility? Everyone is a "victim" in today's litigious society. In the past week I have seen more emotional pearl-clutching over a brief, non-threatening Twitter exchange and some fabricated perceived connection thereof to the tragic suicide of a 15-year-old boy than over any story in recent memory. No, a grown man should not have addressed a 15-year-old like that, but if you're going to post stuff on the internet, you'd better be big enough to deal with whatever fallout occurs. That's true whether you're 45 or 15. The difference is if you're 15 that's what you've got parents for. All the while few are looking at the one reason said 15-year-old's name was ever on the radar screen in the first place."
--------------------------------

Thank you. Thank you.

All firearms should be kept unloaded in a gun safe or in a secure and out of view place, especially with minors in the house.

First of all, since many questions are being raised about everything else, we need to raise a few more about the young man's Twitter page.

1. Why was....or was....... Caner okay with this young man using a name (with a screen shot of it printed by the Christian Post & Peter Lumpkins) that represented a publicly offensive term in Turkish?

2. Was Caner not monitoring his son's account when he constantly posted "I'm bored" or "Nothing to Do"?

3. Was Caner not monitoring the account when the son posted "Can't Sleep" or posted repeatedly about having problems trying to go to sleep?

4. Why was a picture posted, earlier in the year, of a rifle with a scope and a shotgun mounted openly on the wall?

5. Was it seemingly ignored when he said that he had been kicked out of Hudson Oaks Walmart twice?

6. Why were there two posts that said "Bang Bang"?

7. Where were the parents when he declared that he had been 33 hours without sleep?

Many of these tweets happened BEFORE the exchange between him and JD. However, we wouldn't want the Christian community to exercise logic, use facts and communicate reason. It's much more fun to engage in lynch mob mentality.

Hey Christian Post, did you hear that? OR Are you too busy trying to become the religious National Enquirer?

Is it possible that since Dr. Richard Land is on the Board of Directors, that things are being whipped into a frenzy?

Anonymous said...

@ the person who posted this at August 6, 2014 at 11:44 PM

"Want to blame someone for the blogosphere going into hyperdrive about this? Look exactly at Ergun Caner."

Nope. I am looking squarely at J D Hall and his obnoxious online friends.

J D Hall and his buddies are responsible.

I don't care what E Caner did or didn't do, none of that justifies grown men approaching the teen son of a guy they don't know on Twitter and criticizing him.

Stop blame shifting.

Anonymous said...

Regarding (don't know who said this):

"I have a really good idea. If you don't want certain people communicating with your teenager or child, keep them off of social media until they're 18 years old. How's that for a novel idea?"

How about adults show some restraint and maturity and not harass teens online?

Just because a teen-aged kid posts something on his Twitter page does not mean an adult who doesn't know him should contact him and browbeat him over things.

Stop blaming a teen kid or their parents for having a public social media page. The blame is on J. D. Hall and his online friends.

If J. D. Hall's kids have public social media pages, I guess that means all the folks who are upset with him can consider his kids "open season," and start harassing them on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc?

Anonymous said...

Aletheia....great post. I am assuming all the information you posted on the twits is correct, I myself do not have a Twitter account therefore I take your statements face value. You might want to post a screen shot of these twits...very very insightful. We all agree JD went over the top...I would also claim based on how they drill on others (valid claims no doubt) that this incident should result in JD taking a sabbatical for a bit and reflect....remove himself from ministry until time he is refreshed and not so aggressive in seeking justice against false teachers...chill JD....some good information has been forthcoming on this blog...thanks TOM for your endeavors. No complaints here....

Anonymous said...

Aletheia said,
"First of all, since many questions are being raised about everything else, we need to raise a few more about the young man's Twitter page."

No, we don't.

We need to know why adults such as J D Hall (and yourself) who purport to be Christian, think it's okay to contact teens they don't know and needle them?

We also need to know why some have allowed their issues with Ergun Caner snowball to the point they look like un-glued, insane loons who now harbor an irrational hatred for the guy.

It's already been pointed out time and again on various blogs Ergun Caner was dishonest about his past.

The information is out there for others to see. Let it go.

Anything at this point is now a WITCH HUNT and harassment.

And still dragging his dead teen- aged son up to supposedly support your case against, and animosity towards, E. Caner reflects very poorly on you, not on E. Caner.

Anonymous said...

It's very troubling to see he went without sleep and may have been antagonistic if he was kicked out of a store. First thing that came to my mind reading that was Ritalin which has also been linked to suicide. I doubt any of us know his medical history. Illegal drugs are also common in Tx and some would cause the same things. It is heart breaking beyond words that they are suffering this loss. I would hope all will keep praying for them.

Aletheia said...

To Anonymous - August 7 at 11:19 a.m.

Regarding the Anonymous comment:

"Aletheia....great post. I am assuming all the information you posted on the twits is correct, I myself do not have a Twitter account therefore I take your statements face value. You might want to post a screen shot of these twits...very very insightful. We all agree JD went over the top...I would also claim based on how they drill on others (valid claims no doubt) that this incident should result in JD taking a sabbatical for a bit and reflect....remove himself from ministry until time he is refreshed and not so aggressive in seeking justice against false teachers...chill JD....some good information has been forthcoming on this blog...thanks TOM for your endeavors. No complaints here...."

-----------

Thank you. Yes, these tweets are currently available on his Twitter account. Currently.

Blogger doesn't seem to allow for screen shot attachments.

Unfortunately, it seems that many people are unaware of how the American justice system operates.

Thankfully, based upon the attitudes and opinions expressed here and in the comment sections on other blogs, we still operate under the rule of law, instead of mob rule.

BBC Open Forum (commenter on August 7 at 3:01 a.m.) has already posted information on this, but people really need to read the following Texas Statutes, especially Section 46.13:

http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/Docs/PE/htm/PE.46.htm

Anonymous said...

Aletheia,
I am going to look at this from a Texan's point of view....
I grew up with guns, as did my son, as will my grandchildren. ( my son is now 26)
I'll catch flak for this, but my son had a fully loaded AK 47 in his closet his entire life. It was safer there than anyplace else I can think of...
The gun is a tool. It's less dangerous than the Toyota sitting in your carport.
You have to train and teach your kids from a young age about firearms. It is serious and it needs to be taught how serious that firearm is....
Blaming the gun or the fact he has a photo of the gun is bull.....

Anonymous said...

This is the best reply I've read here so far. Thank you for not pointing fingers.

Arce said...

The group of people aligned with JD Hall, some of whom targeted a 15yo child because a grudge against his father over religious matters, needs to come clean, confess and withdraw from the public arena, take down their web sites and their twitter accounts, and give up social media as a way to communicate.

And Ergun Caner still needs to make a full and complete confession of his ten plus years of lies and outright falsehoods, and repent from that approach to speaking or preaching.

In other words, a pox on both houses, both are at fault for doing what they have done and what has happened to this young man.

Michael said...

Just thought I'd pass this along...

I'm saddened by a lot of the comments that I'm seeing over this, but I can't say that I'm all that surprised...

Blame is Not the Game

Mark said...

I think the other blog mentioned here is in precarious territory for naming people they think contributed to the suicide of Braxton. There's really no place for that right now. Everyone needs to put away their pitchforks.

Teen suicide is, unfortunately, not that uncommon. It is the third leading cause of death for people 10-24 years old.

Anonymous said...

Wow - I actually agree with ARCE. I am not sure about "pox." I do not know what a "pox" is. Sounds pretty bad. I will just pray for both camps. I am good with Caner and I think he has more than learned his lesson. In spite of the pulpit fibs, I have to admire his fighting spirit.

chapmaned24 said...

I'm wondering why Calvinists are so obsessed with Ergun Caner.

Ergun Caner wants nothing to do with Calvinism.

What is the Calvinists vested interest in all this?

The Calvinists want Ergun Caner to REPENT...to them.

He's not going to. He's not going to. He's not going to.

OK, so he lied. Big deal! Who hasn't?

I'm just wondering why the Calvinists are so concerned with someone that wants nothing to do with them.

It's like stalking your ex-wife or something. Very very creepy.

And then you people want us to stop making assumptions about Braxton when in fact our assumptions have credence.

Yep, you Calvinists are murderers from the beginning.

All I see with you people is constant unsolicited badgering of MANY different people who want nothing to do with you.

Get over yourselves and leave everyone alone that want nothing to do with you people.

Caner is not a Calvinist, and he never will be one, and he will never repent to YOU people.

What you people do in badgering others is futile. You are wasting your time and energy and efforts.

Stop stalking people.

Ed Chapman



Anonymous said...

BBCOpenForum, You have teens? Tell us how you keep them off social media.

Anonymous said...

Well, we lasted longer than I thought we would before the defensive voice of the NRA showed up. Who better to hear it from than a tough talking Mom from TX.

Bee said...

I'm saddened by the responses from believers. I attended Braxton's funeral. I saw the many teens that came to a saving knowledge of Christ. I heard a brave young boy talk about the big brother he had lost and watched a brokenhearted father stand beside him with tears running down his face. I listened to friends remember their friend and the joy he brought to their lives. I listened to the uncontrollable, anguishing cries of a mother as her son was rolled away from her presence. I hugged the neck of a broken man whose eyes were swollen from tears. These are real people who are suffering. Where is the love of Christ? Are we to love and feel compassion only for the sinless? Ergun loved Braxton with all his being. It only took a few minutes in conversation with him to know that. Please, leave this family alone. Don't speculate. Don't criticize. Don't pretend to know Braxton's heart. Learn from the tragedy. I cannot imagine that the behaviors that have unfolded in the blogging world are any less egregious to God than those of Ergun Caner.

Aletheia said...

To Bee at August 8th at 2:36 am:

Very moving.
Thank you so much for sharing this.

Will you please share this with The Wartburg Watch and The Christian Post?

Bee said...

Aletheia-
I reposted it to the Wartburg, but I was censored.

Anonymous said...

"I Expect Better from Fox News Reporter Todd Starnes"

I think it would be safe to say that there is a multitude of people who have expected more, and will expect more from Ergun Caner, more honesty, more repentance, more confession. I guess you just join the very large disappointed crowd of folks when it comes to things related to Ergun Caner.

I do not look for any confession or repentance from him in the future even with the suicide of a son.

I believe it will be "business as usual" after a period of mourning for Mr. Caner.

Anonymous said...

PK

I personally do not think that JD Hall's direct tweets with Braxton had any more or less to do with his passing than the EC attacks on the whole. All of you "Christian Bloggers" are the same. JD apologized for his error very quickly. The last thing that anyone should do is go after the children in an attack. That is the cardinal rule. If you are attacking someone, their children are just as off base as your children or your grand children. Hall knew better but he could not help himself.

Do you suppose that the other children read blog articles or heard their parents conversation about Ergun before JD's tweets?

Do you know how cruel people can get with a controversy? Of course you do. You were kids once upon a time and you saw it happen. Read a Harper Lee novel if you lack that experience.


If culpability were an issue, and it is not, all of those of you bloggers that attack Ergun are at the same level of guilt. WW, FBCJWD, Lumpkins, MosesModel, you guys are the attackers in the name of "Furthering the Gospel" by tearing down instead of building up.
Maybe you've benefited someone by identifying a serial fibber. (I give both camps equal minimization) Perhaps there is some credence to your words. But to continually state and restate the same information over and over is maniacal and ridiculous.

If blogged words are the fault, then you all own it. JD Hall is one of your own. You should support him, forgive him, and wear this incident like a badge. You own it, you deserve it, and you earned it. Be proud!



Arce said...

@2:59 pm 8/10

No. There is a huge difference between people who point out the Caner lies and those who contacted and harassed his 15yo son. It was not just JD, but his "pulpiteers" who sent multiple messages to the child. The "pulpiteers" are a group set up by JD who follow his leadership, including in all things nefarious. And in this case, they took his direction and attacked the child. JD is responsible for this, for he created it and leads it.

If there is culpability, it is JD and his "pulpiteer" minions.

Aletheia said...

Have you read the latest article by the Christian Post dated August 9, 2014 at 10:35 am?

http://www.christianpost.com/news/baptist-preacher-jd-hall-calls-connection-between-braxton-caners-suicide-and-twitter-clash-unfair-but-will-back-off-on-ergun-caner-124546/

Here's the very last paragraph in the Christian Post article, just in case they take it down:

"Although it has been widely reported that 15-year-old Braxton Caner took his own life last Tuesday, public information officer with the Parker County Sheriff's Office, Deputy Danie Huffman, said the cause of Braxton's death had not yet been determined."

Contact: leonardo.blair@christianpost.com; follow me on Twitter @leoblair

chapmaned24 said...

I caught that. I was wondering if anyone else would catch that, too.

Arce said...

The CP article does not address the "pulpiteers", and any statement by JD that does not address the "pulpiteers" is deficient.

Anonymous said...

PK

Braxton's parents seem to disagree with you ARCE. I do not know how you could conjure an argument that less than 200 words, over a 2 week period in total twitter exchanges, could possibly out weigh the thousands of words by bloggers spanning nearly 5 years. Maybe you could argue that the twitter exchange was the last straw. I doubt that it was the last straw. I think it was just a straw.

You could make a stronger argument that Seth Dunn's more recent antics had more to do with that last straw. Of course, that was only a straw.

The field goal kicker that went wide right on the last play did not lose the game.


Nope. The bloggers on the whole own it. You guys want to "protect" us from the wolves in sheep's clothing. You have to figure that there is bound to be some collateral damage along the way.

It is not fair that any of you bloggers should do any more than rightly admonish JD for resorting to the direct contact with children. JD was wrong, he admitted it, and he repented. He is correct in pointing out such. JD's posts were woefully errant but at best only incremental in the damage inflicted as a whole. He is moving on and I doubt that he will ever have anything to do with the Caner's.


I am no fan of Hall. He does what many enterprising talk show/blog professionals do. Find someone out in front that takes a stand on some controversial issue and then keep digging until you find dirt. Exploit the dirt that draws the most attention. Score more listenership or readership. Adjust the angles and repeat.

The parents seem to think that the passing of Braxton was the result of the unkind words by bloggers and they do not single out Hall.

As a parent myself, I cannot even imagine the agony of an untimely death like this one. I do not know if I could survive that event even without all of the peripheral attacks and horribly mean things that people do and say. I offer my true condolences and share your sorrow.

Congratulations to the bloggers.

You won!

Arce said...

None of the blogging about Caner would have occurred had not Caner presented, repeatedly, a false story, had not sued to cover up the false story, etc. So the bloggers did not win, nor did Caner. And all are appalled at the death of a child, whether there is any relationship between that death and any of the prior controversy. There is no evidence of a causal relationship between any of this and the child's death.

It is not a victory for anyone, and it is a tragedy for everyone.

May God grant peace to all involved. And may we all learn to live with bit more evidence showing of the grace of our Savior.

New BBC Open Forum said...

The Caners blaming the tragic death of their son on "bloggers" is like Obama blaming George Bush for everything that's happened during his own administration.

Anonymous said...

So Watchdog... are you going to cover the story of the repentant blogger who harassed Ergun's Son? Actually... now that I think about it maybe you could ad a statement repenting of your own unChristlike spirit in your treatment of Caner. Just a thought...

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Anon, yes a post is coming. But afraid you will be a tad disappointed.

Anonymous said...

"unChristlike spirit"

You must have a different version of the Bible than the rest of us. I couldn't find Christ worshiping the popular (but disingenuous) spiritual leaders of his day. Quite the opposite. He was very critical of them. Perhaps it is you that is exhibiting an unChristlike spirit.

Aletheia said...

Regarding this comment:

Anonymous said...
So Watchdog... are you going to cover the story of the repentant blogger who harassed Ergun's Son? Actually... now that I think about it maybe you could ad a statement repenting of your own unChristlike spirit in your treatment of Caner. Just a thought...

August 12, 2014 at 7:24 PM
--------------------------------------

For your information, JD Hall did something PUBLICLY that Ergun Caner has refused to do - REPENT.

JD Hall, Watchdog, Dr. James White, Jason Smathers, Moses Model, Fred Butler, Gene Clyatt and a host of others have done something that Caner still refuses to do - BELIEVE in the Christian necessity of TRUTH.

I praise God that there are still men who proclaim the importance of truth-telling.

I praise God that there are still judges who can recognize frivolous lawsuits.

JD Hall has obviously made himself accountable to other Christian brothers.

Ergun Caner has apparently (it seems) made himself accountable to NO ONE.

JD Hall enlists the prayers of his church and Christian brothers.

Ergun Caner enlists the tactics of "Yes" men like Peter Lumpkins.
("Yes" men are very necessary to continued deception tactics, such as those "Yes" men on the boards of mega churches.)

Do Christians believe that lying spirits can negatively affect family members?

Does modern Christianity even believe Ephesians 6:12?

Ephesians 6:12 (KJV)

12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

John 8: 43 - 44 (KJV)

43 Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word.

44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

http://www.aheartforgod.org/2013/09/09/7-ways-to-recognize-a-lying-spirit/

chapmaned24 said...

Aletheia,

How about this one, Aletheia,

http://hubpages.com/forum/topic/81144

Ed Chapman

chapmaned24 said...

Aletheia,

Or this one

http://www.bibletools.org/index.cfm/fuseaction/Audio.Details/ID/1021/Whats-So-Bad-About-Busybodies.htm

Ed Chapman

chapmaned24 said...

Aletheia,

And this one:

http://versebyversecommentary.com/1-peter/1-peter-415d/

Which states:

1 Peter 4:15
“But let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, an evildoer, or as a busybody in other people’s matters.”


or as a busybody in other people’s matters

Peter says, “Do nothing that would give your enemies an excuse to attack your Christianity, even to the extent of meddling in other people’s business.” Some people love to meddle in others’ affairs. This person is a self-appointed overseer of other people’s business. These people love to run the lives of other people. They interfere in business not their own.

We have more busybodies in church than murders. We have more busybodies than thieves. We have more busybodies than evildoers. Do you make it a practice to stick your nose in other people’s business? Some people tell others how to raise their children when they have brats of their own.

The Bible speaks to the issue of meddling in the affairs of others in a number of passages:

1 Th 4: 11 “That you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you, 12that you may walk properly toward those who are outside, and that you may lack nothing.”

Evidently we need to take lessons on how to be quiet. It takes some study to learn how to mind our own business.

2 Th 3: 11 “That you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you, 12that you may walk properly toward those who are outside, and that you may lack nothing.”

PRINCIPLE: It is unchristian to meddle in the affairs of other people.

APPLICATION: Too much idle time introduces the problem of being a busybody.

1 Ti 5: 13 “And besides they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house, and not only idle but also gossips and busybodies, saying things which they ought not.”

If tattlers and busybodies find no one to listen, they would be forced out of business. If we receive stolen goods we are as guilty as the thief. There is something in the human spirit that loves the juicy morsel of gossip.

Some things are better left unsaid even though it may be true and accurate. You may feel that you are simply reporting the facts but what good is this doing? It would not serve any purpose to pass it on. It should die with you but you are dying to tell someone. Like money, it burns a hole in your pocket. You must tell someone. You call someone and that you have a “prayer request.” We call this “spiritual gossip.” “I don’t want you to think that I am gossiping but I would like you to pray about this. Mr. and Mrs. So and So are having marriage trouble.” There are some things we pray about privately.

Are you a nosey person? Are you a person who cannot mind his own business (Ro 14:4 [Open in Logos Bible Software (if available)] ,10 [Open in Logos Bible Software (if available)] )? Christians do not have the right to run other people’s lives. If we do, we play God. We try to lead the lives of other people. Some Christians bully other Christians.

The nosey person always starts out the attitude sins. This person is usually bitter, antagonistic, vindictive, implacable, and operates with a guilt complex. He is so unhappy with himself that he tries to run the lives of other people. He wants to superimpose his view of the world on other people. He wants to pour them into his pseudo mold. He does this by maligning, nip picking and criticism. He basic system of operation is retaliation and bullying.

Simon C said...

Chapman,
Don't care one bit about corruption in the church for fear of sinning, got it.

If that's the way things things will be, I think I will 'sin' boldly.

Aletheia said...

Regarding the comment by:
Chapmaned24 - August 13 at 10:40 pm:

I noticed that you left out this verse in I Peter 4:

I Peter 4:17:

17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?


I understand that you believe that some people are "stirring the pot", so to speak; however, Jesus warned us about "wolves in sheep's clothing".

"Wolves in sheep's clothing" have caused people to lose ministry jobs, lose their place as a musician, lose their teaching position in the church body, lose years of dedicated service or employment in a church, denomination or Christian institution.

I have seen loyal, hard-working employees fired from religious institutions for no reason at all......all because the appointed "Wolf" wanted them gone.... after years of dedicated service.

I have known ministers who have left the ministry because of the unapologetic ungodliness on a deacon board or in a church body. Ministers who truly taught the Word of God have been forced out by church members who were grossly deceived.

Do you know why this continues in churches and denominations......over and over again?

Do you know why this continues in religious institutions?

It's the same thing that happens in politics when people begin to expose the corruption of political leaders.

People are shamed or humiliated into silence so that the sin or corruption can continue unchallenged and unnoticed. They are made to look like troublemakers.

Consequently.........Darkness is celebrated while the light is extinguished.

People are called gossips, accused of murmuring. People are made to feel as though something is spiritually wrong with them because they don't agree with ungodliness in the church. They are shunned and ignored.

These tactics are in the devil's playbook.

There's a HUGE difference between National Enquirer-like gossip and attempting to adhere to Biblical standards in leadership. God has a very emphatic set of standards for Christian leadership. The New Testament not only contains standards, but warnings and consequences. Deacons, trustees, churches or board members SHOULD NOT appoint ungodly people into Christian leadership. Appointing people into leadership positions who are not Biblically qualified goes against the Word of God.

Titus 1:6-9 (KJV)

6 If any be blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly.

7 For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not selfwilled, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre;

8 But a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men, sober, just, holy, temperate;

9 Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.

10 For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision:

11 Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre's sake.

12 One of themselves, even a prophet of their own, said, the Cretians are alway liars, evil beasts, slow bellies.

13 This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith;

14 Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.

15 Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled.

16 They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.

Lynn123 said...

All I'd like to say is to confirm that if you leave a comment on Starnes' Facebook page that doesn't agree with him, you are deleted and blocked. Happened to me.

And I've always admired the Watchdog for publishing critical comments.

Anonymous said...

Chapman - another great example of why if you take the bible literal you are an idiot. It is not being a busy body to report a child molester in the church. Or your neighbor if he is cooking crack. Or a singer that comes to sing who is an atheist. Or a coach who lied on his resume. Or a preacher raised in Ohio who comes in and claims to be a trained terrorist. Or a preacher who preaches false doctrines and lies about God.

Only a complete and utterly gullible Kool-Aid drinker would use scripture the way you do to advocate not sticking your noses in other people's business. Is it really nosy to discern who is speaking to you and if what they are saying about God is true?

Your attitude helps explain why we have Jim Jones and David Koresh, and Mormons believe in magic underwear and terrorists believe they will be rewarded in heaven for killing the infidel.

AAAAGGHHHH. Trying to reason with people like you is hopeless.

And as for letting God handle it...Sometimes he does. But will we acknowledge that, or will we blame others for the calamity?

Lynn123 said...

It must be hard to be a preacher's son. It seems it would be a miracle if you turned out to be well-adjusted. All these adults as part of your life. Your father is actually called a "man of God" by others. Yet, for you, he's just your father. He may be wonderful or horrible or somewhere in between.

Your family is held to a higher standard by all those in the audience. Your life is on display, and you have to worry about being "holy." It's all sick and damaging, I think. I was damaged by conservative religion in the South. Thankfully, I wasn't a preacher's daughter.

One more thing-it must be mighty disillusioning, depending on your personality, to have a front row seat as a preacher's son, to the ugliness that goes on in the name of God. Adults constantly talking about what's biblical and whether you're on God's side or the devil's. It's all so very sick and unhealthy. I feel sorry for anybody growing up in that mess. In the church I grew up in, the pastor's son ended up in prison his whole life due to drugs. His sister had a horrible relationship with their mother most of her life. So, I don't an opinion other than that I just feel sorry for those growing up in this ugly world of conservative religion-where people actually argue about Calvinism vs. Armenian (sp?) and other crap like that. And whether somebody's son or daughter is being immoral or not. Sure, people are ugly outside of religion also, but at least they don't claim to be new creatures in Christ.

Anonymous said...

chapmaned24,

Do you enjoy irony much?

Lynn123 said...

You expected better from Starnes? Why? He's all about rousing the religious-constantly telling them how persecuted they are.

Lynn123 said...

Actually, Starnes is like those black leaders who make it their life to remind blacks how persecuted they are. I'd find it so refreshing to find someone who doesn't love playing the victim. Someone who'd stand up and say, "I have many advantages, many things going for me. I have no desire to play the victim role." But, that's hard to find, I guess. Being a victim is so much fun!

Anonymous said...

"another great example of why if you take the bible literal you are an idiot."

It is always good form to use proper grammar when calling someone else an idiot.

Anonymous said...

My father was a preacher. I loved my father very much. He was a real man and was so patient with congregants. Often, some would offer correction with his sermons. My dad would smile and thank them for their observation and then refer them to scriptures that were the basis for his idea or sermon. Invariably, the congregant would offer scant or no scriptures to support their argument. Sometimes the congregants argument were doctrinal and way off the denomination reservation. He served in a couple of churches as a full-time pastor and then later in "Home Missions" planting churches.

You would be amazed to learn that the seemingly sweetest little old ladies, so prim and proper, would choose Sunday morning to become expert theologians and spend the rest of the week calling their friends to stir up all sorts of trouble. The men were no exception. I recall one dear brother that was so very plain spoken and crass. He would inject his misunderstandings at every opportunity. Once, he disrupted the Sunday morning service and called my dad a liar. As it turned out, it was a total misunderstanding on the man's part. There were Godly men in leadership in that church and they handled the situation so well and gently corrected the man in just about the best way possible. That same man became a pretty good Christian church member eventually. The deacons made sure that he understood that the church, his church, provided for disagreements in an orderly manner and that there was nothing gained with disrupting a service in that manner.

In fact, a mishandled disruption does as much or more damage than if the preacher is in need of correction, after all. It is wise to handle disagreements privately.

My dad retired before the rise of social media and blogs. I think the lessons of the "party line" are applicable.

When I think of my dad and his philosophy I think of Steve Saint. I truly believe that my dad could be that forgiving.

I asked my dad how he could take all of this in stride and keep his patience. His answer was very revealing of his true Christian persona. He said Christ put up with way more. Jesus seemed to understand that people were hurting. The people that hurt the worst seem to cry the loudest and most often. Through their hurt, sometimes damages emerge. It is up to mature Christians to recognize the needs. Understanding, patience, and love are needed to restore and nurture those dear brothers and sisters.

Preachers Boy

chapmaned24 said...

To Anonymous @9:05 8/14/14

Anonymous said to me:
"Chapman - another great example of why if you take the bible literal you are an idiot. It is not being a busy body to report a child molester in the church. Or your neighbor if he is cooking crack. Or a singer that comes to sing who is an atheist. Or a coach who lied on his resume. Or a preacher raised in Ohio who comes in and claims to be a trained terrorist. Or a preacher who preaches false doctrines and lies about God."

My response:


If you would keep your business in your own church, that would certainly be the right thing to do.

If you suspect a child molester in your church, or if your neighbor is cooking crack, DIAL 911.

If there is an atheist singing, big deal. Don't go. Or go. Get a T-Shirt! Who cares. You don't take the Bible literally anyway.

If you do not attend Ergun Caner's church, mind your own business.

Simple.

Some people don't like snitches, like you. Some people were taught not to be a tattle tale.

Ed Chapman

Anonymous said...

Well, looks like Mr. Starnes is now on to bigger and better controversies. Appears he decided to open up his big fat pizza chute and criticize Obama for having the gall to offer his condolences to the family of the slain teenager in Ferguson, Missouri.

Notice a twinge of potential hypocrisy here? So he can offer condolences to a grieving family and be pure as the driven snow, completely innocent of any agenda, but if Obama does so, he's got some ulterior agenda he's pursuing.

chapmaned24 said...

It's called preferential treatment. He doesn't console every grieving family. And he shouldn't. The president should be presidential, and not overstep his boundaries as a grief counselor.

Boundaries. When I was a kid, the saying was, "Stop or I'll shoot". Today, it's "Stop, or I'll say stop again!".


Ed Chapman

Anonymous said...

It is always good form to use proper grammar when calling someone else an idiot.

August 14, 2014 at 1:24 PM
__________________________________

Chapter and verse please? Where does it say I have to use proper grammar or good form when calling someone else an idiot? Why are you placing this burden of good form on me? AAAAAAGGHHHH. I need to review my grammar rules and make sure I don't leave off any letters when typing before I can call someone else an idiot! Will you forgive me in the name of Jesus? No more comments from me until I get some English language tutoring. I feel so ashamed. Again. But thanks for your reply to my comment. It shows you have a good comprehension of the subject matter and are able to apply sound thinking before responding.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of grammar...How come the Bible does not contain spelling and grammatical errors? We know many of the writers were uneducated men. None were professional authors or writers, yet their grammar, spelling and punctuation is perfect. Hmmmm. Perhaps, just maybe, whoever wrote the books edited and changed the original manuscripts? I never thought about this before. Common sense tells us that some Jewish fishermen and tentmakers couldn't talk or write so eloquently. If the word is perfect and infallible, wouldn't the original manuscripts contain the same? Wow. Maybe someone else wrote the books? Hmmmm. This grammar thing has me questioning God's word. Thanks for that anon.

Anonymous said...

Ed,

Maybe, maybe not. But one thing I do know: so-called "Christian" commentators who seek the public limelight and to be the "voice" of "evangelicals" in America should keep their damn pieholes shut instead of mouthing off about how white people are getting discriminated against these days. I don't need to get into the history of racism in southern Christian institutions. We all know it. And every time a blowhard like this Starnes or Richard Land (Google Richard land trayvon Martin) wades into such a polarizing issue and cries reverse racism, it just confirms for a lot of people that nothing much has changed.

chapmaned24 said...



I Peter 4:17:

17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?

Are YOU the judge?

Romans 14:4
4 Who art thou that judgest another man's servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand.

1 Cor 11:31
For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.

If you believe that others are blind, Jesus said to let the blind lead the blind.

He also said that if no one wants to hear what you have to say, to dust your feat.

In the town that worshiped the goddess Diana, the whole town was in an uproar because Paul was in town. NO ONE wanted to hear what Paul had to say.

So....

HE LEFT TOWN. He did not shove his beliefs down anyone's throats that didn't want to hear it.

Reference: Acts 19.

When many of the disciples that Jesus had left him, he did not hunt them down, he did not tattle tale to the local synagogue about a former disciple. He just let them go, in peace.

Ed Chapman

chapmaned24 said...

Simon C

Chapman,
Don't care one bit about corruption in the church for fear of sinning, got it.

If there is corruption in your church, find another church.

Ed Chapman

chapmaned24 said...

Anonymous @ 4:40PM 8/15/14

Is someone forcing you to listen to Starnes or Richard?

Or do you voluntarily hear what they have to say?

It's a choice.

Ed Chapman

Simon C said...

I've left a church that affiliated itself with Caner. It is now a mission field to me, a mission field to which I (to my family's dismay) minister to as best I can.

On the other hand, if "I see corruption that is being willfully ignored" is met with "feel free to leave" I'm sorry for thinking someone who claims to be a follower of Christ should have STANDARDS. I was under the impression that Christians push people out for being unrepentantly sinful, not for refusing to tolerate unrepentant sin.

If that is what you want your church to be, I hope you don't mind me writing "Ichabod" over the door on my way out.

chapmaned24 said...

Simon C

You had said:
"I was under the impression that Christians push people out for being unrepentantly sinful, not for refusing to tolerate unrepentant sin. "

My response:
There is a PROPER way to handle things. The way that this situation has been handled, it was wrong. It was just wrong.

From the outside looking in, I see Calvinists are hot on that word "discipline", and "obedience", and "rebellion". My God, for some people, it's a sin to question the pastor, or it's a sin to question "authority". Rebellion is the catch all sin. Picking your nose during a sermon winds up being a sin. I am exaggerating, of course, but things that are not sins to begin with are sins, just because someone said so, and they place it in the category of rebellion. So, if ya pick your nose, you could wind up in church discipline, and if you refuse, to repent for picking your nose, then you could be kicked out of the church, shunned, bad mouthed, tracked down to the next church, badmouthed to the new pastor telling him that he belongs to you because he is in church discipline for picking his nose.

I see this freaking cycle time and time and time and time again.

I see the constant finger pointing, tattle tailing, snitching, spying, etc.

But you know what I do NOT see?

Discipleship.

Tons of discipline, but not discipleship.

People go to church to be uplifted, not to be finger pointed, not put down, etc.

What do you do with people who STRUGGLE with real sin, such as a drug addict that can't seem to shake the monkey off their back? Or the alcoholic that fell off the wagon?

All I see is that some of you are treating people with meanness, and nastiness, lacking love, patience, kindness, and all of the other traits of the gifts of the spirit.

People pay to pray. They pay to be hounded. They pay to be in subjection. They pay for people to point fingers.

And they call that tithing?

If it is the leader of the church that is in, what you call, unrepentant sin, then there is nothing that you can do.

Do we go to the Mormon Church and call them people out? Do we go to the Jehovah's Witness Kingdom Hall and call them out?

No, we let the blind lead the blind.

All of the people who follow Caner already know about Caner. It is their choice to continue to follow him. And there is nothing that you can do or say to change that.

You say it once, and if they don't listen, you dust your feet. Very simple.

Do your ministry, as you do, and be happy. Don't be cruel to anyone, whether you believe that they are "in sin", "unrepentant", etc.

Be NICE.

Ed Chapman

Anonymous said...

"Chapter and verse please? Where does it say I have to use proper grammar or good form when calling someone else an idiot?"

Chapter 1 Verse 1 of "How Not To Be A Hypocrite and Make Yourself Into a Laughing Stock."

I believe it is also mentioned in the "Big Book of Irony."


Anonymous said...

"I need to review my grammar rules and make sure I don't leave off any letters when typing before I can call someone else an idiot!"

That may have been the origination of the phrase "the pot calling the kettle black."

Anonymous said...

"I never thought about this before."

Yes, that is very obvious. It is indeed clear that you have never thought about or researched this subject before. You are without knowledge on this issue. Congratulations!

Perhaps you skipped out on Sunday School that weekend. I would image the same might be true for grammar class in grade school.

"Common sense tells us that some Jewish fishermen and tentmakers couldn't talk or write so eloquently."

Please stop! My stomach is hurting from laughing. That might be the single most hilarious sentence I have ever read.

"If the word is perfect and infallible, wouldn't the original manuscripts contain the same?"

Do you seriously think that you are the only person to ever come up with that question? It was asked and answered hundreds and hundreds of years ago.

By the way your question shows a complete misunderstanding of the doctrine of Biblical inerrancy.

They invented this thing called Google a few years ago.

Use it and educate yourself.
Please.