Members who were asked to stand in the picture at left, you were lied to.
How does that make you feel?
This was not just that a preacher saying something untrue and hurtful during a sermon about someone, like Mac did with Sheri Klouda.
This is worse. This was a carefully crafted, legal, official statement of the First Baptist Church of Jacksonville, Inc. that was officially adopted by the church leaders, and then ratified by the members. And they lied in it. That would technically, make everyone who stood, a party to the lie. That hurts.
This means that Mac Brunson, A.C. ("Anti Criticism") Soud, and the other trustees and deacons violated the trust of the congregation that night. The congregation stood in affirmation of this motion sight unseen and with no discussion or questions for no other reason than because they TRUSTED these men. If the good people of FBC Jax thought for one minute that these guys didn't do their homework, or purposely lied in the motion, many would NOT have stood up.
All of you present and were visibly seen standing on the live Internet feed that took a wide camera shot at the time of the vote: Jim Whitmire, Jim Smyrl, Jarred McConnel, the Pianist, the Organist, even you [insert YOUR name here] that stood up to ratify Judge Soud's edict....you listened to arguably the most respected man in all of Northeast Florida stand and read a motion. He even had our media guys put his motion up on the I-mags so you could follow along as he read his beautifully crafted paragraphs and could appreciate them fully, word for word in all of their glory. This was a big day...the day his committee's motion would fix the problems plaguing Mac once and for all, and put the Watchdog in his place, show everyone what a coward he was, and then warn that anyone else following in his footsteps would suffer the same terrible fate as he. Problem solved, right? Wrong.
Only one problem.
They chose to lie to you.
Yes, you were lied to.
They asked you to stand and ratify a document that contains a "Whereas" statement of fact that was a bald-faced lie.
Makes one feel a little bit like Ralphie in the "Christmas Story" after he decoded the secret message in Little Orphan Annie only to find the secret message was a bogus "Drink Ovaltine" ad.
Deacons who voted Monday night February 23 unanimously to approve Anti-Criticism Soud's wonderfully crafted motion, you were lied to. Even some of you Trustees that voted on Febraury 18, you were lied to as well, since its safe to assume you would never voted to bring a motion to the deacons and then the church that told a lie about a member or former member.
But should this surprise any of us? The Watchdog has tried to warn you.
These are the same cast of characters that brought you "The Bylaw Changes of 2007", a church administration horror flick where a motion was made to approve bylaw changes without even so much as charactering the nature and purpose of the changes. Not a single peep about the bylaw changes that took church members' rights away to call a special business meeting, granted the pastor expanded authority, and created a discipline committee and discipline process that begins with the Pastor. Oh, and a little tiny clause stating members "forfeit their right" to ever bring legal action against the church. Almost forgot that last one.
But this vote was worse.
Because they lied.
About a former member.
Did I just say that?
Yes, I did. You better believe I did.
Judge Soud, which part of the A.C. Doctrine did I just violate in saying "They lied"? Would that fall under the "harmful opinion" clause? Or would that be a "false statement"? To claim "they lied", would that possibly cause "financial and spiritual risk" to the church? Was its intent to be "divisive and cause strife and disgruntlement"? Or maybe I just violated the Judge's "unjust criticism" clause? In what manner will I be "confronted aggressively"?
Are you shook up enough FBC Jax? GOOD! (to quote Mac).
OK, what was the lie?
Obviously it was Soud's intent in this motion to do several things. The crafty Judge sought to accomplish three things in a skillfully written lawyerly prose:
1. They wanted you to know that they caught the Watchdog;
2. They wanted you to know the accused left in a cowardly way to hurriedly join another church before A.C. Soud and his band of Merry Trustees and Discipline Committee members could get their hands on him ("that 'wascally wabbit', we almost had him and he got away!"); and
3. If any of you other plebe decide to follow in the accused's footsteps and you engage in any of the sinful conduct of the accused, they will aggressively hunt you down and do the same thing to YOU and your wife that they did to him and his wife.
I'll address #1 in a later post. They obviously believe they caught the Watchdog, and they believe they have proof. Good for them. So I'll grant them that they acted in good faith based on the evidence they have (which they still have not provided to the accused despite repeated requests for it - more to come on this later) making it impossible for the accused to answer their claim.
I want to address the second of the three main points of Judge Soud's A.C. Doctrine. What he said was a lie. He could have said any number of facts about the accused. Perhaps it would have been most helpful to those voting to state what the nature of the EVIDENCE was against him. Even a vague description of the nature of the evidence, or even a statement that they know beyond a shadow of a doubt they got him. No, they decided to tell you the circumstances of him leaving to show him to be a coward and call into question the family's sincerity in joining another church - as though the accused's new church was a snap decision not out of the Lord's leading but a cowardly move to avoid the discipline that they deserved at the hands of Anti Criticism Soud and his discipline committee.
But Soud got it completely wrong.
Judge Soud's grand edict says the following:
"And whereas said member within the last three weeks has requested his letter be transferred to a sister church in Jacksonville, Florida but only after being advised that the discipline committee of the deacons would recommend to the deacon body that disciplinary action be taken against him for such conduct which the deacons find is contrary to Scripture and the bylaws of the church."
They could have said the member has already left, or the member has changed churches and is not therefore subject to any further discipline, but no, they wanted you to know he RAN like a coward after they said discipline would be taken.
Here's the truth. Here's what Anti-Criticism Soud should have told you:
The discipline process started November 28 with trespass warnings being issued against the man AND his wife. Anti-Criticism Soud didn't tell you that. There was no Matt 18 biblical process initiated whatsoever. None. Period. Minor detail, huh?
The accused and A.C. Soud's committee were at an impasse since December 13, 2008. The Committee demanded that the accused meet with them, the accused said he would as soon as the bylaws describing the process were given, that the basis of the accusations were stated, and that he be allowed representation. A.C. Soud and his committee declined all three of those reasonable requests, thus no meeting took place.
As the holidays drew near, being barred from their church of 20 years by threat of arrest, the family was forced in late December to start looking at other churches. After visiting a handful of churches, the family found a very loving church, where the preacher preaches expositorially, with power and conviction but in a loving, humble manner. For most of January they visited the church, and after seeking the Lord's will and meeting with church staff members at their new church, they decided to join fellowship with this church on February 1, 2009.
After nearly 1 and 1/2 months of no word WHATSOEVER from Blount or A.C. Soud's committee, they joined another church they had visited for OVER A MONTH.
Did you read what I just wrote? Not that the man ran like a coward with his tail between his legs to quickly join a church to avoid the discipline he had coming. They visited their new church for more than a month before decided to join, while he waited for the discipline committee to send him the bylaws and tell him the basis of the accusations.
THEN, and ONLY THEN, after they joined this church on February 1st, and their letters were requested by the new church, did John Blount call the accused at 12:30 pm on February 10th to tell the accused that the discipline process was going to be started again, and the committee wanted to meet with him.
So Anti-Criticism Soud decided to mis-characterize the decision process by which this family joined another church to hurt their reputation and make him look cowardly. The family, and the staff at the new church will testify that this family sought the Lord's will during this time, and although they love FBC Jax and its people they knew the Lord wanted them to join another church. Souds remark calls into question the integrity of the new church, that they would accept a "scoundrel" like the accused to allow him to escape his due penalty at the hands of the "bishops" of the FBC Jax discipline committee.
That's fine, take a final swipe at the accused by saying something as ridiculous as Soud did...but for the Lord's sake A.C. Soud, why get the people of FBC Jax to GO ALONG WITH YOU AND RATIFY THE LIE? You could have taken the swipe in your comments, but you PUT IT IN THE MOTION WITH A WHEREAS, as though it was a finding of fact, and had Keith Hill ask the sweet people of FBC Jax to stand.
And another lie throughout the document is that they desire to use "biblical church discipline".
What A.C. Soud didn't tell you is the process used against the accused was no where close to biblical church discipline. It STARTED with Rev. King and Rev. Blount delivering trespass warnings. There was never, ever, EVEN TO THIS DAY, an attempt by ANYONE AT THE CHURCH....not Brunson, not Mrs. Brunson, not A.C. Soud, not John Blount, not anyone ever contacted this family to explain the charges against them in accordance with Matthew 18 as Mac has preached. Just trespass warnings to both the man and the wife to force them to meet with six men. We're all waiting for the explanation of how this process was anything close to "biblical church discipline". Perhaps its in the Greek text, right next to where Mac found that the churches in Rome were all "satellite churches".
And then A.C. Soud has the audacity to characterize the leaving as being only after the threat of discipline.
Anti Criticism should be ashamed of himself.
And the FBC Jax leadership: from pastor to Trustees, to Deacons...should all be ashamed of themselves because they didn't do their due diligence on the motion - but who can blame them, if it was written by A.C. Soud himself, right?
And I hope the good people of FBC Jax, after being fooled twice by this leadership, has learned their lesson.
Isn't it ironic...a Judge reads an edict warning people that they better not lie, tell hurtful opinions or false statements in the church...but one of the findings of facts IN THE EDICT ITSELF is a lie.
I have a lot of experience with mega churches. If people at these churches knew how much they do not know about back stage shenanigans and how much they are lied to all the time, these monstrosities would cease to exist. But cult of personality reigns..for the time being.
Their days are numbered anyway. Too many are unwilling to keep up the charade of the 'unspirit filled'pastor and his fashionable wife living the life of the Gatsby's.
It won't take long for the rich elders to get sick of having to constantly put up even more money to keep the 'show' afloat. Some might even get saved and want a true Body of Christ.
You're wrong in referring to this resolution as "skillfully written lawyerly prose." Any real lawyer would be completely embarrassed to have written something like this. The text of the resolution is amateurish. No self-respecting lawyer would ever make so many conclusory assertions without including citations to back them up. For example (these are just a few of the many questions that should be asked):
- Which statements on the blog are false?
- How do you know the Watchdog's site is owned by the person you claim it's owned by?
- What is a "harmful opinion?"
- What false doctrine has the Watchdog disseminated? When?
- Even if your timeline about the accused joining another church is true, what makes you think there is a causal relationship? Just because event B follows event A does not mean that event A caused event B.
- How is the Watchdog's conduct contrary to Scripture?
- How is the Watchdog's conduct contrary to the bylaws of the church?
- What is your basis for claiming that certain "opinions and false statements" might cause financial and spiritual risk to the church? (Notice which concern was mentioned first.)
- On what basis do you claim that the Watchdog has "the intent to be divisive and cause strife and disgruntlement among church members against the ministries, staff, leadership, Pastor and people?" How can you possibly know what his intent is unless you can read his mind?
WD, even a naive person like me can see the pattern the current fbc jax leadership is following. It's all the same. You have documented it well. For some reason, lot of people can not see it.
I found this interesting exchange of comments on Wade's blog.
Ron Phillips, Sr. said...
Just curious then... If you are going to be consistent in your new definition of εκκλεσια, would one not logically conclude that the tithe and offering would NOT go to the local visible church, but to any "called out ones"?
I would venture to guess that your view of εκκλεσια is not that charitable. :)
Thu Feb 26, 11:22:00 PM 2009
Wade Burleson said...
Ron Phillips Sr.
On the contrary, I believe a Christian should give his money wherever the Spirit of God directs him. If that is the local organization where he meet other Christians, great! If not, who am I to argue with the Spirit.
I have found that when Christians see ministries where the kingdom of Christ being advanced, they give.
Fri Feb 27, 12:17:00 AM 2009
If you're claiming a lie, then perhaps you can clarify when you were "...advised that the discipline committee of the deacons would recommend to the deacon body that disciplinary action be taken against [you]..."
Its not easy to tell from the narrative when you believe this occured. Weren't you notified way back in November? So it is not a lie, you only joined another church after you were exposed in November and threatened with action by the discipline committee.
I've edited the transcription of the resolution to exactly match that on the FBC Jax website. In making the edits, I counted the number of times each of these words appears. Observe closely and see if you notice the same things I did.
Deacon or Deacons = 10
Resolution = 5
Pastor = 4
Trustees = 3
Church = 8
By-laws = 2
Discipline Committee = 1
Scriptural = 1
scriptural = 2
scripture = 2
biblical = 2
WD: what a spin the Brunson supporters are trying to present. So many intelligent folk, yet so lacking in courage. Follow the leader, no matter the cost.
Can you not read? The man told Watchdog he was notified of the disciplinary process going forward on February 10th.
Prior to then he said he was only asked to meet with the committee of six (or however many of them there were -- I'm going on memory here). Unless they were going to flog him on the church lawn or something, this could hardly be considered notification of any "disciplinary action."
When his requests, which I thought were certainly reasonable, were not granted back in December and nothing more was heard from the church after December 13th, apparently he and his family began visiting other churches and in fact joined another church on February 1st. That was nine days before they heard from anyone at FBC Jax again and... let me help clarify for you here (you don't even have to take off your shoes to count)... nine days before he was notified the disciplinary process was going to proceed.
Does that clarify it for you?
I too have a lot of experience with mega churches, one being FBCJ. I agree, their days are numbered if Jesus is left out.
Brunson does not preach Jesus First.
The Brunsons are too concentrated on their personal agenda.
I will hold comments on previous pastors, i.e. Vines especially, and their lack of concern for sexual abusers in churches.
Ah yes, very good point.
If you examine the Nov 28th letter (its all hyperlinked in a previous article) it was making accusations against the accused man and wife, and requesting (demanding) a meeting be held with the Discipline committee for the purpose of restoration and reconcilation. It prohibits either of the accused, he or his wife, from coming to the church property for any reason at all, except to meet with the Discipline Committee, under threat of arrest. As is well chronicled on this blog the wife of the accused sat in her car outside on numerous occasions durng December waiting while their children were inside the church youth functions.
The November 28th letter is the letter required by Article XIV, section 4 of the bylaws, "...the Deacons...shall at once give written notice to the persons implicated detailing the allegations against said persons. The Deacon body shall proceed immediately to investigate the matter."
So via the Nov 28 letter, the accused were alerted, and the investigation began.
A number of emails and letters were exchanged but the meeting never occured because the simple requests of the accused were not met by the committee. The last email exchange was around Dec 15th from John Blount. Too bad A.C. Soud couldn't give a copy of the sacred bylaws to the accused, or allow them to have a representative, or tell them the basis of their allegations.
Then nearly 2 months passes with nearly NO contact at all from Blount or the committee.
So being banned from the church under threat of arrest, they search for a new church home starting around the Christmas holidays.
After visiting their current church home for about a month, on Feb 1, the family joins their new church home.
That week, the new church writes for the letters of the accused, from FBC Jax.
Then, amazingly, a Feb 13th email is sent to the accused from John Blount, stating that the committee has "completed its investigation", and would present their findings to the Deacons.
So that is your answer. Feb 13th is when the accused was notified that disciplinary action would be taken.
Feb 1st, family of the accused joins new church.
Feb 13, Blount notifies that disciplinary action is coming.
Too late John Blount, the family already joined another church. What did you expect? They would sit at home and mope waiting for the Bishops Brunson, Blount and Soud to "let" them start attending? Fat chance, they shook the dust off their feet and found a loving church home.
And then A.C. Soud piously announced that the accused left ONLY AFTER they were notified of disciplinary action. Didn't mention the trespass warnings, didn't mention the 2/13 letter being AFTER they joined a church.
Sorry A. Charlie, your committee threatened disciplinary action ONLY AFTER being notified the accused had found another pastor and church.
So A.C. Soud had it wrong. He had it completely reversed, to call into question the accused's intentions in leaving. The accused left because A.C. Soud's committee gave them trespass warnings, and for some reason wouldn't allow the accused to be given a copy of the bylaws...and then let two months slip by during which time the accused did the right thing and began to worship somewhere where there wasn't a standing trespass warning against them.
Too bad John Blount didn't catch that error in the "Anti-Criticism Doctrine" statement before A.C. Soud read it to the church. Dohhh!!!
What a sad day for a once glorious church. I am saddened and embarrassed for FBC Jax.
Maybe the City of Jacksonville can use the former FBCJax facilities for rock concerts or maybe an indoor flea market. Roll (over) Homer Roll (over).
Good post and points Mr Watchdog. Maybe AC is getting senile.
Okay, February 10th or February 13th -- your post says Blount called the man on February 10th. If he wasn't notified until the 13th, Anon 8:27 may have to take off one shoe after all.
Did it not bother anyone that the Resolution (with a capital "R") was approved and ready to present to the Deacons (with a capital "D") back on February 18th? The accused man was still corresponding with Blount on February 20th. What a joke!
Another minor detail...boy, did these trustees really proof read this thing?
He says the accused joined a sister church "in the last 3 weeks...."
Motion was passed 2/25.
3 weeks prior, was 2/4.
The family joined 2/1.
Come on guys, when you pass landmark motions, motions that the other SBC churches will be reading on the Internet, at least proof it and don't make factual errors. Get it exactly right before you come to the church and ask people to stand and give ascent to your "wheras's" and "wherefore's"
Rev King and Rev Blount: please initiate step 1 of the Discipline Process against Judge Soud. Call and hang up to confirm he's home, and serve him a trespass warning for making "false statements" to the church and the world at large, during a business meeting that was "published to the world on the Internet."
And please, send him a copy of the bylaws when he asks for them prior to the meeting.
I have just one thing to say:
KILL THE BATMAN!!!
"And please, send him a copy of the bylaws when he asks for them prior to the meeting."
He doesn't need a copy. He helped write them.
What's the symbolism here? On the FBC Jax main web site, the link to the "Deacon Resolution" in the upper-right corner is covering up text that says "Linking Lives to Jesus Christ."
Of course, just some tongue in cheek humor there.
Dr.Dog..This charade would be halarious if it weren't so tragic!!Old McDonald and his farm hands are absolutely ridiculous..IT GETS WORSE AND WORSE!!!!
It's the same "symbolism" evident in my 8:38 p.m. comment.
The Deacons, the Resolution, the Pastor, the Trustees, the Church, the By-laws, and the Discipline Committee...
scripture, scriptural, and biblical.
They clearly demonstrated their priorities right there.
I don't get it! The incongruency of this leadership is AMAZING.
So, they pass brand spanking new bylaws, and don't describe, characterize, read, explain any aspect whatsoever of the changes that do greatly impact the church members. They don't post the bylaws on the church website.
But they pass a resolution chastising a former member for being divisive, and threaten the others against doing the same....AND THEY PROUDLY POST THE RESOLUTION ON THE WEBSITE!! "Hey everybody, look at our church discipline committee and the STRONG STAND we take against....bloggers!!" And they partially conceal the name "Christ" in their "Linking Lives to Jesus Christ" logo.
I really was just kidding last week about Barney Fife...but maybe he IS running the show down there!
Matt - I am interested in what you've witnessed, etc at these mega churches. I know it may be off-topic. sorry. The reason why is because I have had bad experiences at these type of churches, but it was a lot of the bad vibe I got. No real hard evidence or was never privy to the real goings-on at these just places. Just knew it couldn't be good because I always felt so horrible and tense in those churches. I think people would be interested to hear you because alot of people have had bad experiences at these churches yet they are soo unbelievably popular. just don't understand. Thanks in advance.
"The family, and the staff at the new church will testify that this family sought the Lord's will during this time, and although they love FBC Jax and its people they knew the Lord wanted them to join another church. "
Yep, trespass warnings delivered to you door Thanksgiving Eve is a pretty good signal: God wants you to find another church. Good for them!! Sometimes the Lord speaks softly and His will is not obvious at first, sometimes His will is seen very clearly. Methinks the latter was the case here!
I lost all respect for Judge Soud when he emceed the "Night to Stand with Israel" to benefit himself and his buddies who invested in Israeli bio-medical technology. The man prostituted our choir, our sanctuary, and the name of Jesus to the community. He and his wife, Ginger Soud, a former councilwoman, actually emceed the ceremony.
After that, I knew I had been wrong about Mr. Soud being the real deal. He is at FBC to see and be seen and have a "position" in the congregation. Jesus would run him out of his favorite seat at the back left of the sanctuary. This resolution just made it clear to thousands of others what a fake and how pathetic Mr. Soud now is. Once a great teacher and apparently "real" Christian. Mr.Soud has been exposed. Just my opinion.:)
Mr. Soud, as a former judge, you KNOW to ask for the evidence against an accused person. And you also know if that evidence is based on hearsay, was illegally obtained, or is "secret evidence" it is not reliable and is not valid. So what evidence was there against the accused that was "admissible" to you that convinced you to act against him.
And why sir, did you issues trespass warnings to his sweet wife? Was that just to really piss the man off? Well, I hope you are proud of yourself, you bully. You pushed around a godly Christian lady and got away with it. But God is not mocked, you will reap what you have sown. Issue a resolution apologizing to her.
It is truly amazing that very intelligent people in the secular world like Mr.Soud can easily be lead astray by religious frauds in the spiritual world....Worldy wisdom is powerless against spiritual deception...That's why the Bible warns that in the last days MANY will be mislead by charlatans posing as Pastor's who's only desire is for fame and fortune...God given spiritual insight and discernment appears to be sorely lacking in many of FBC Jax leaders and parishioners!!
My feeling is that men like Judge Soud, deep down in their hearts, must have left a seed of pride and desire for wealth and respect, down in their hearts. As long as Godly leadership is in place, those sinful attitudes and motives stay hidden. But with a non-saved, CEO opportunist like MB comes in, these seeds begin to grow and then bloom for all of us to see. It appears Mr. Soud, even though he was teaching and serving in prominent positions, harbored the sin of pride and sought the approval of men more than the approval of God. This is the only way I can explain his 180 degree transformation. I will add that others saw this in him many years ago, but I didn't believe it. Now, I see it clearly. Mr. Soud has exposed his true motives and heart. And it is very ugly. That resolution was embarrassing and his bullying of an innocent lady is outrageous. I hope she takes legal action against him for his actions that are clearly outside the Bible and clearly outside the by-laws. Mr. Soud knows as well as anybody he can be held accountable for these actions if the lady chooses to pursue it.
One other thought: Perhaps Mr. Soud was lied to and used by John Blount to get Soud to act out of anger and impartial facts. If so, and I were Soud, I would demand an explanation as to why he was asked to read facts that were false and misleading. Especially when the point was to shut down people who spread false and misleading facts.
Either Mr. Soud took all this personally and blew it in his response, or he and others have been lied to about the evidence against the accused and other key facts.
So either Mr. Blount (he is no more "reverend" than Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson, although that title fits all three) or Mr. Soud (obviously he is no fair "judge" in this mess) have some explanations coming to people and definitely an apology to at least one wounded and suffering female sheep (the accused's wife) for the malicious, intentional and willful and "wanton" (to use their term) actions that harmed her and her family.
We are waiting and watching, men. (bullies/cowards.)
Would someone please pick up the phone, call Mac or Blount and simply ask them what evidence they had against this brother that was so "iron clad" to rule out any other explanations? And why they never presented it to the accused so he could either confess, or at least explain why despite the evidence, the charged the wrong guy? I don't care either way whether they got the right guy or not, I am MORE CONCERNED ABOUT HOW THEY OBTAINED such information about a member they disagreed with. And you should be too!
1. FBC now equals "Fitfully Botched Conclusions"?
2. There are First Baptist Churches all across the land; in their communities, they usually are the largest congregation with the most ministries happening and the most resources for them; in other words, FBCJax is only ONE such FBC, and quickly becoming THE joke among them it seems;
3. The SBC is watching--and what we know is that in OUR congregations there are hundreds of men with reputations such as suggested for Soud--except that the men in our churches do their homework, starting with Matthew 18, and they insist (because of their REAL character like Jesus) that everyone else does the same. We all can see that, to become a part of the elected leadership at FBCJax, a person doesn't have to have quite as much character anymore (we all guess it helps in your recruiting efforts there);
4. It's commonly know that Baptist folks like to sit at the back of the auditorium, but unless hundreds of folks were sitting there on Wednesday night, judging from the screen shot provided the attendance was fairly poor for such an important meeting--and now the ENTIRE present and future membership is obligated to the controls established by the vote that night;
5. NO SENIOR PASTOR WORTH HIS SALT ever would have missed a meeting as important as this one--and NO DEACON BODY/TRUSTEE BOARD WORTH ITS SALT would have let him, despite possible prior obligations;
6. The leadership mistakes at your church are so glaring, the rest of us in the SBC need sunglasses just to look on at a once-grand congregation being allowed (by all of you) to come apart at its seams; the flea market idea mentioned above: give it some serious thought, people!
you are in an all out warfare against Truth. This has now become a nation wide battle that has permeated every aspect of our lives. what was once a Christian Nation has now become corrupt, trying to murder God and Truth and it has succeeded in destroying this nation and the filth and corruption in our government is beyond the pale.
Our politicians are liars and now that they have gotten God and prayer and the Ten Commandments out of our schools, government, are now trying to silence freedom of speech and the Truth by the so called " Fairness Doctrine". Only a liar could call a program to silence all truth and oppositions to liars "fair".
Liberal churches are dead. Our government is dead. Who is left that speaks and knows Truth? Conservative churches. So, this is where the battle over Truth is raging.
Only the liar fears the Truth. Scripture tells us that both sides of the story are to be heard, in the presence of the people, SO THAT all can discern what is Truth and what is the lie.
No one who speaks truth is fearful of the lie. No liar wants to hear the Truth because the Truth will destroy the liar. That's why they try, without success, to silence only the Truth speakers.
Its just my opinion
Did anyone say Flea Market. I think it is a wonderful ideas for the citizens of Jacksonville. A centrally located area for vendors of all stripes to ply their wares.
I have alot of experience in this area and would be delighted to make the church an offer. With a fleas market, we wouldn't have to fix the AC....no, not that AC, although that might not be a bad idea from what I am reading.
We could also open a pet store in McDonald's old office, maybe if he is no longer drawing the huge $$ he might need to put his pups up for sale. Anyone want a McDonald dog? Maybe Mr. Blount might want a reminder from the good old days. Speaking of JB, how did he become a Rev.....at the same school as Jesse and Al? Now it's all making sense...The Shakedown School of Theology. Hey, I bet McDonald got his degree there as well.
Hey Red, a pet store in Macs old office, next thing you know you'll be trying to heard the WD and me into a cage. Get real man, and quit picking an AC/DC and little Johnny Boy. J.Blount is a yes boy to AC/DC. Johnny Boy is just a hair older than AC/DC's kids.
Does anyone know what AC/DC's first name is..........mmmmmm didn't think so. Try Abdul, why do you think he has never revealed that little fact and another bit of wisdom from ole DD, AC/DC has short mans complex and did you notice how much he resembles Baghdad Bob? That's right, he and Baghdad Bob might be related.
Now this explains some of the stuff going down in downtown Jax.
Just thought this bit of info might lighten up everyones day.
anon 9:18 that is kind of right. Im not a supporter of watchdog, but i think it is important how this info was obtained. real important.
I find it really sad that Feb 13 was a past important date occurring around this present fiasco...that is the same date that Dr Lindsay died!!!!
Watching the bungling unspiritual manner in which this current leadership is handling church matters, we can look back and see how God used the Lindsays for 60+ years to do HIS work. None of this disgraceful performance would have been tolerated by the Lindsays for a moment. The strange thing is, some of these same men served under the Lindsays. So we know who the spiritual hand of God was upon. The Lindsays, certainly not these men. Gentlemen, you need to stop trying to BE the power and go to the ONE who is the Power. Jesus. Just because you try to use "legal terms" on spiritual matters, and invoke the name of Jesus does not mean it is of God. The problem is God has been taken off His throne in FBC and men have climbed on it.
Proverbs 13:10: " Only by pride cometh contention: but with the well advised is wisdom".
Reminds us of the famous curses that Benny Hinn and Paul Crouch are famous for throwing out to those that oppose them and their false prophecies, etc.
We are truly in the very last days.
Living Hope In Jesus
Baptist Life Moderator William Thornton chimes in on the FBC Jax church discipline fiasco (see hyperlink below). This is just the start, as the action FBC Jax has taken Wed night, and then their Barney Fife move to POST THEIR RESOLUTION on their website in their "hot update" upper right hand corner hyperlink - this will serve to draw attention to our idiocy in the nationwide SBC circles, and possibly local news media attention.
Church Discipline According to FBC Jax
You can use the link above to check into the discussion that takes place there. To be fair, some of the posters there are "liberal", but William Thornton is NOT.
William Thornton gives a wonderfully succinct summary (minus his hyperlinks):
"The clamor for church discipline amongst some SBCers (mainly the calvinists who have no dog in this local church squabble) sometimes finds expression that looks awfully sub-Christian to me, an example of which might be FBCJax's recent public flogging of a former member. That's right, a member who cannot be kicked out because they have already left. It was done in an FBCJax conference without naming names.
To summarize with extreme brevity: Church member blogs critically of the new pastor; church reacts in various ways culminating in taking legal action against the alleged blogger in the form of a no trespass warrant; church staff summon the alleged miscreant to a Sanhedrin of deacons; alleged blogger agrees to appear but only with conditions which are rejected by deacons; alleged blogger MOVES HIS MEMBERSHIP; church, not to be denied, goes to a Wedensday congregation with a resolution.
Baptist Planet summarizes the whole business with numerous links here.
The resolution against the FORMER member by the Sanhedrin, er, Deacons is here.
FBCJax Watchdog, who has consistently denied being the person called before the church, blog is found here.
To me, this process sounds less Biblical than it does medieval where someone who offended the king commits suicide rather than submit and the king insists that the body be drawn and quartered and displayed for all to see."
"Baptist Planet summarizes the whole business with numerous links here."
The other two links were to the resolution and this blog.
The President said "there is no pork in the Stimulus Bill". Was that a LIE? It depends on what PORK IS IS IS IS
We are finding a growing problem of LIEING at FBCJ. What are we to believe of the Pastor, Trustees, Deacons, or Staff members?
Is the truth no longer in them? Is their conscience seared so that they no longer FEAR THE LORD? Mac is so bent on CHANGE that it appears that he will say anything,or do anything to have his way. It makes one sick to see at what length they will go to further their PURPOSE DRIVEN AGENDA. "WHATEVER IT TAKES"
In order to force FBCJ to CHANGE, Mac has called its members LEGALISTS and TRADITIONALIST. Now he wants to SILENCE ALL OPPOSITION to CHANGE. listen, Mac was charging FBCJ with LEGALISM from the earliest days. Well church, who down there is legalistic and show me what that is? Mac calls FBCJ wrapped in traditions and then does his DUCK/GOOSE WALK and gets people to laugh at him. Pray tell what traditions does he want to change? Music, Sunday school, the Gospel, Visitation? Well he has already changed those traditions. What next? FREEDOM OF SPEECH!!!
Does he want your money? Maybe he hasn't changed your way of giving. [BAROWING]
The bylaws already said that FBCJ could go after anyone for disciplinary action. They did not have to bring this NEW MOTION before the church. This looks like nothing more than SCARE TACTICS.
Saints, we have been trying to tell you that this would happen if a church followed the PURPOSE DRIVEN MOVEMENT. Well FBCJ is PURPOSE DRIVEN, so, now what do you expect?
Expect more twisting of the truth to justify their actions.
DEACONS, WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO WISE UP AND HOLD MAC ACCOUNTABLE?
There is an old saint buried in England. On his tombstone it reads sort of like this..."He was not afraid of what men could do as he only tried to serve the God he knew". Its about time we all got into that mold. Its later than you think!!!
Wasn't it AC Soud some thirty years or so back that gave a presentation on the "trial of Jesus"? In that presentation the laws that were broken by the Sandherin...trial at night, false witnesses, money paid to an informant, etc showed how illegal the arrest and sentence was carried out. Not comparing the so called Watchdog to Jesus, as there is no comparison intended, but just an analysis of earthly circumstances...... should not the same pureness of the law have been given and reviewed prior to the call for a vote? Strange justice if you ask me.
"Try Abdul, why do you think he has never revealed that little fact and another bit of wisdom from ole DD, AC/DC has short mans complex and did you notice how much he resembles Baghdad Bob?"
I don't know if you were just trying to be funny or if you were serious, but A.C. Soud, Jr.'s first name is Abraham, not Abdul.
My first impression was he does appear to have a Napoleon complex, and I agree he bears a strong resemblance (in more ways than one) to Baghdad Bob.
And Baghdad Bob sometimes reminded me of someone else.
FYI...Ran into another disillustioned member at the gas station whom I didn't previously know but we struck up a conversation...He informed me that he is actively seeking out another church because of the atomosphere,changes and the demeanor of Mac...Also I turned him onto this web site..
BBC, you are a clever fellow! The ole DD was just trying to bring a little levity to this depressing situation. What does the C stand for?
Anyway, just an observation but Baghdag Soud sure looks like a mortician in the video. Looks like they applied the corpse make up to the wrong stiff, if you know what I mean. The waxy, lifeless pose by the little man was rather poignant. Maybe he knew he was delivering the eulogy over the once great FBC Jax.
Does WD really deny being the accused? If so, why not "out" himself and show FBCJ up?
I just came across Mac's blog for the first time. I don't remember you mentioning it here before. What do you think about it?
Judge not less you be judged!! The bible is the best teacher on who is to judge another. Peter did not judge Ananias and Sapphira..the Holy Ghost did and they were killed by God concerning the price of a piece of property they gave to the church which they had sold, but had kept back part of the price. Paul, never, once he was saved, dealt harshly with those that opposed him. He gave them to God. David, likewise, even allowed an old man to throw stones and curse him alone.
I recall Dr Lindsay preaching in the old Hobson building that God would not allow the "gates of Hell to prevail against His church". He said he would charge hell with a water pistol!! If the gates of Hell are not allowed to inflict trouble on the church, why should members attempt to put themselves in the position of God? It is simply because they fail to read and understand the scriptures. That is why the church is failing to meet the standards set down by Jesus Christ, who is head of His Church, not man!!!
There is also a total lack of forgiveness on the part of church leadership. Cain asked a very important question..."am I my brother's keeper". This was amplified by the apostle Peter when he asked Jesus how many times should he forgive seven times. Jesus said no, but rather seventy times seven..in other words we are always to forgive when the need arises. It appears there is nothing in the bylaws to match up with the teachings of Jesus Christ. All I see and read is retribution and shut em down. Whatever happened to charity. Has it been tossed aside in favor of exclusion for those that have another opinion? If so, this church and many others like it will one day have their doors and windows boarded up. Jesus gave us a new commandment...Love one another. Notice in our church age, Jesus is on the outside knocking but cannot and will not be let in. Even Jesus called Judas Friend. What a savior. Anybody want to argue against the Lord's teaching here!!!!
OK, here is my 1st comment since watching all this transpire in 2007. I want to Thank Dr. Brunson for his sermon about 99.9% accuracy as this made it possible for that .1%to do away with Matt 18 in their eyes as now the discipline committee can take over here.(sarcasm)
However I would like my .1% inaccuracy to do away with Malachi 3:10 as that is just for man's benefit cause God never needed it.(more sarcasm)
So how much more can we pick and choose what is biblical, spiritual or worldly and apply it against members in the church. I would like to also point out not only did the Pastor, trustees, or the deacons not follow Matt 18, they also forgot to read:
Mat 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
Luk 6:27 But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you,
Luk 6:35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and [to] the evil.
Is this that .1% they want to leave out so they can persecute those who oppose them.
And since Mac talked about tithing on his tithe he must have forgotten these verse's or are they also part of that .1% he did not mention in that sermon.
Mat 5:23 Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee;
Mat 5:24 Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift. Are their gifts still sitting in front on that altar or did just they put it back in their pocket?
All of this just makes me sick.
What they all did here was nothing but a sham. Persecution of a brother and his family (especially his wife) because they belive him to be the watchdog and yet they would not present one shred of evidence of this.
My last verse I will add here is this:
Jhn 8:7 So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.
Matt - I am interested in what you've witnessed, etc at these mega churches. I know it may be off-topic. sorry. The reason why is because I have had bad experiences at these type of churches, but it was a lot of the bad vibe I got. No real hard evidence or was never privy to the real goings-on at these just places. Just knew it couldn't be good because I always felt so horrible and tense in those churches. I think people would be interested to hear you because alot of people have had bad experiences at these churches yet they are soo unbelievably popular. just don't understand. Thanks in advance.
February 27, 2009 10:01 PM
I am actually thinking of writing a book about some of the things I witnessed. I think there is a story to be told and little by little it is now being told on blogs about specific churches.
I won't name names but in general because of my situation and having many close friends and family involved in mega's and para church organizations across the US, I have been privy to quite a few things. None of it good.
I came to the conclusion, which many will castigate me for, that these churches in no way represent true biblical Christianity. Yes, I know that is a broad statement. But in general, I have found it to be true.
But if we step back and think logically for a moment using NT scripture as our guide, what is the Body of Christ? We start there. If you can get that part down, you can start to see the glaring truth that they are not the true Body of Christ. Are there saved persons in them? Probably. But I am even having a hard time understanding how they can stay there. But we love being a part of something big with events, activities and the whole social aspect of it. WE convince ourselves that WE are doing something great for the Lord. As if we could. sigh.
These monstrosities, as I have come to call them, are business operations. They cannot help but be that because of their size. To even begin to maintain the building itself takes masses of money.
Go to most mega's on a Monday morning and watch as the Brinks truck comes and the money counters are in the vault (yes, most of them have vaults) and the armed policemen (hired for that day) are there to ensure the safety of the counters and the money. You start getting a picture of what is really going on.
I have many stories to tell but can only give you generalities on a blog. Basically the pastor is like a CEO and in some cases even a Rock Star. Many of them have personal body guards. On most Sunday's you will find someone always 'walking' with them to the stage. (In some megas this is a plain clothes policeman) The job of this person is not only to protect the pastor but to pull them away from people who want some of their time so the pastor does not have to be the one to say he cannot talk.
The service is like a theatre production. In many of these churches there is a huge staff that is part of preparing the 'production'. I know of one church that even has staff joke writers for the pastor to use in sermons. (Get them to laugh is very important). In any event, there are dramatists, researchers, video production people, etc who are all involved in the sermo planning. This is so they can also 'sell' the sermons to other pastors. That is a huge business now that most folks do not know about. Willow Creek really perfected this years ago. It comes as a package deal with video, skits, etc included. They even sell yearly memberships.
The days of the pastor being the guy on his knees praying for the Holy Spirit to give him a Word are pretty much nill in these churches.
The scariest people in megas are the staffers. Always vying for a place close to the pastor. If you think corporate America is dog eat dog, it has nothing on mega church staffers. If you are a staffer that gets to spend time with Rick, Billy or Ed, you are someone who has influence over others. And the pastors use this to their advantage tactically.
Because churches do not have to abide by labor laws, the staff is like a revolving door. You can fire without cause and it happens all the time. But no one calls it firing because that is negative. And only positive is allowed. Everything is spinned to 'create an environment'. And because they focus on unity of relationships instead of unity of spirituality, the whole relationship thing must be spinned. If you do not go along, you are tagged as not a team player and are out. Disagreements are not allowed. No matter what it is about. You will not find courageous risk takers on mega church staffs. Trust me on this.
It is a business. It has been grown like a business. I have seen many folks fool themselves like I did that something happened that changed the church. Not really. It was always there you just did not see it. Like I did not see it. But the system was in place. Perhaps the last pastor was a nice guy and preached good sermons. But the system was there.
Ironically, in many mega's the pastor knows very little about what is going on but sets the tone for everything. They rely on staff ministers and elders for information and it is always one sided information. They THINK they know what is going on. It is very hierarchical but is not presnted that way to the public. They are usually presented as down to earth godly men. Not true. They are the most isolated people in the world and surrounded by sycophants who tell them what they want to hear. If they ahve elders, they are 'protecting' the pastor.
To give you one example of how protected and isolated they are, one assoc pastor of a mega went to the elders and said he needed a large raise because his wife was having their third child. Now, keep in mind, he had been a pastor there since his early 20's and was now in mid thirties. He was making a 6 figure salary at the time he asked. He literally thought he was entitled to a raise because of the added burden. He had no concept of reality or how it works in real life.
Another church had a huge campaign to raise funds for yet another huge building for a youth church on it's campus. During the campaign they were praising single moms for being frugal to give more money for the building. During this time, the pastor was building a brand new 6,000 sq ft home on a golf course. Yet, no one saw the incongruity of the situation. It was perfectly normal.
Think about this..How do most mega's sell the size concept to their 'audience'? They tell them they are an 'Acts' church. And 3,000 were added that day.
Ever heard that? But what was going on at Pentecost? Why were all those people there to begin with? And did they stay in Jerusalem to be in this new church? No.
Now think of most mega's. They have become one stop shopping centers for social life. They have bookstores, coffee shops, gyms, activities for your kids, for you, sports teams, etc. You hardly ever have to go into the world and be salt on a daily basis except to work. And even in most mega's it is one big networking center for business. You use the plumber in teh mega business directory, etc.
And that is exactly what they want. In several mega's there is actually a department called 'guest services'. You think that is for visitors? No. It is for the members! They are called 'guests'.
The body cannot function in a mega as it is to function bibically. Why? because the eyes, hands and feet are paid staffers. They do it for the 'guests' so the 'guests' are not exercising any spiritual gifts in the Body. Some may get to teach if they know someone and can get vetted. But it is difficult. It is really a production with an 'audience' who watches the production. Very little spiritual growth happens in megas. But there are lots of happy people.
And ask yourself why these pastors are writing so many books and why they all have para church organizations apart from their job as pastor? Just take a look at some of them on Navigator and see who their senior staff are in these para church orgs. Mostly family. And the salaries are huge. Chuck Swindoll was making a salary at his church and paying himself a nice chunk from his para church org, too. But the real clincher was to see his para was paying his wife 6 figures and his daughter 80 grand! And he is just ONE example. There are hundreds of examples of this from very popular folks.
I better stop now. I could go on and on. But most folks reading this will say, that is NOTHING like my mega. They always say that. And they are usually those who work there or are in the audience. Just try taking them on sometime for behavior or doctrine and see what happens.
Sounds like a very interesting book; if you do write one be sure to post - I'd like to read it.
Great post! I could contribute a chapter or two to that book if you'd like. I can't speak for him, but I have a feeling Watchdog could, too.
Just checked out McDonald's blog and found (2) interesting points. #1, you cannot leave a comment and #2, check out the Feb 6th blog and see if you don't find a correlation between Pharoh-McDonald, Egypt-FBCJax. The paralles are there for all to see and McDonald does not/cannot see his self indictment. Unreal
On John Blounts blog, apparently he has been sooooo busy chasing the WD he has not had time to blog since Dec 11th or is it because he doesn't have anything important to say? I dare say I may have been one of the first to visit his blog.
Brilliant and poingnant post. Reads like the thesis for a future PhD.
Where did you ever get that pic of McDonald as a teenager?
DOn't you just love reading all this good stuff?
A gift suggestion for the budding megachurch pastor wannabe.
Matt: RE: Your remarks as to the "real" goings on behind the "church". I have been saying this same stuff for years. I fought myself over these same pictures I was seeing and trying to not be a part of it, but to actually go to church to worship. How did I do this? I will say in the "Lindsay" church this stuff existed on a lower level with some staff and members, but NOT with the Lindsays themselves. Actually the Lindsays fought hard against this very thing. I remember many sermons condemning this same stuff. Dr. L,Jr., said many times, "I don't want FBC to become a country club church. They hated to have people pandering to them. They really were the "Real Deal". And I must add the Lindsay wives were also the real deal. These women were first and foremost, about Jesus. They were kind and friendly to people. But they knew when people were trying to "use" them in order to have some sort of pride of place. These men truly were only interested in getting people saved. And in just preaching the gospel. That is why I and others are somewhat shocked to see these men that knew what the Lindsays stood for, do the things they are presently doing to destroy this once great church. IF, some of them get to heaven, it would be great if they had to listen to a 1,000 year tongue lashing from both Lindsays. These "Whereas Resolution" guys are all about themselves and how important they are. I know them and a more self-serving group you will never find!
Back to your remarks: I will say that once the Lindsays died, the picture you have described began taking over "big time", immediately. It's like there was nothing to hold back what was coming. Now the church could go where many had wanted to take it for years, into the "progressive" disaster it has become.
Just an extra chapter for the book" Dont' forget the "wives". This is huge. How much influence the "wives" have on their husbands. Sometimes a man might want to get out of this "phony" enviroment, but his wife will not let him. She is not going to give up her "position" on the "social rung" of "the church". If she did not earn her position fast through having money (buckets) or through her "contacts" with fellow "social climber wives", then maybe she worked her way up the ladder by pandering to the other "social wives". Whatever, you can bet the influence of the behind the scene pious wives is heavy indeed. Some women know what they want and they are past masters at getting it. It's always led by pride or pride of place. After saying that, I will say this. As in any organization, there are REAL women who truly love the Lord and who truly serve Him and who have led others by their example to know Jesus Christ as Savior. Not all of the women behind the men are like the "social climbers". Those Godly women will hear "Well done good and faithful servant".
I think Matt, I could write your book. Better get at it,before someone else does. Blessings to you.
Verrrry astute observations about the wives etc...
Here's another thought, Guinell Freeman, Fran Hawk, Francis Hendricks, both Mrs Lindsay's (who taught the new members clases for years and never took a paycheck) and those other women were the backbone of FBC Jax ministry. Those ladies loved the Lord and were soley dedicated to service and not building their kingdom, adding to their resume or acquiring mammon unlike the elite yes men and boys running things now. Once those ladies retired it has not been the same place since. God Bless those dear ladies and the years and lives they gave in service.
AC, JB and the rest knew their place when those ladies roamed the halls of FBC and there was no need for a Watchdog.
BBC, you are the man! I would be willing to bet that McDonald has this software loaded on his PC and plays it daily!
MEGA CHURCH the game
Imagine if you could create the church you wanted, any way you wanted.
Put together a worship service exactly the way YOU want: hymns, no hymns, drums, no drums. Are you from Wisconsin, start Polka Mass! Start a building campaign, ask for donations.
Be the next Joel Osteen as you play Mega Church.
Anon, I do not know the Lindsey's but I have to ask something. Why did they want that specific church to grow? Why not plant other churches with that growth?
That is the real failing of mega's because they are worldly in that sense: Numbers and growth. It is heady stuff. A truly humble servant of Christ would plant other churches and disciple new overseers.
Ironically, the TRUE church will most likely not be that big. If you read the Epistles and then the letters to the churches in Revelations, you will see what I mean. We see all through the OT that God saves a remnant. He even gives percentages in Zechariah. WE ASSUME when we read the Epistles that everyone in the church at that time was saved. But we discount the Judaizers, the wolves, tares, hirlings, etc,that are mentioned all through scripture. God allows this even though He sent the message at the beginning of the church with Ananias and Sapphira that the church must be pure. That is our job and we are failing miserably. If it were not our job, there would be no Epistles. There IS a true church (not a building but a people 'called out') it is just not easy to find.
But that is another subject. What we may think is the church sometimes is not.
As to the wives let me say that my view of women in the Body has changed drastically over the past few years. After much biblical study, I do not subscribe to the view that women are equal but unequal in role. (I hate the word role because it denotes playing a part)
I will be called a liberal, heretic and many things but I do not believe the interpretations of certain passages bear out that women cannot teach men. Women could teach men in the OT so why would there be a 'new law' in the NT? Many times what is called a 'plain reading' of scrpture is not because the translators interpreted through their own cultural lens. Hebrews 13:17 is one of these verses. The translation says to 'obey' your leaders. A better translation woudl be to 'listen' to your leaders. There are many other examples such as the word 'office' is never used in the original to denote an office of elder. It is not an office but a function in the body. Words have even been added such as the word 'symbol of' in 1 Corin 3:10. Those words are not in the latest manuscripts. They changed the meaning of the passage to denote that women had to hvae a symbol of authority over their 'head'. When Paul was actually saying that women had authority over their own head.
There is a lot more to this but it is off topic except to say that many of these women you mention are ambitious and are doing what they can in the situation they find themselves in. They become manipulators because they are not seeking to be taught by the Holy Spirit and instead rely on their earthly spiritual 'head' and never develop past him. And that is NOT a good thing. After all, the husband is a depraved sinner, too. Not an earthly priest or layer between a woman and Jesus Christ.
Yes, I am familiar with the type of women you speak of. They could run fortune 500 companies. (smile) One mega had the pastors wife over all the publishing, bookstore, etc and she did not even graduate college or have any qualifications for the job when there were many in the church over qualified for it. Her husband was already making 6 figures so they did not need the money. It was also a very hard comp church (most are) and she had men reporting to her.
If you look closely, most of what they teach about women goes out the window when it comes to certain wives. Even Mrs. Criswell at FBC Dallas taught men in her 300 couples SS class. It was said taht she was 'under the authority of her husband so it is ok'. But Dr. CRiswell was not in the room. And the same would not be allowed of all women in teh church who would be qualified to teach.
And anyone around the Criswells for any period of time knows she 'wore the pants' so to speak. But to keep up the facade of what they thought scripture taught about women they had to be duplicitous.
So much of what we see is fake. The solution is to study, pray and ask for wisdom. If we are sincere, we will be given discernment. And we can leave these social monstrosities behind and worship in spirit and truth. You do not need a human to teach you. We have the best Teacher: The Holy Spirit. If you study Corin closely , you will see it was never intended that we have one person preach all the time. That is a tradition..actually a Greek tradition. All who are saved are to be involved in the worship. That could never work in a mega church. And if that happened, then why pay someone 6 figures when the Holy Spirit can use anyone for free?
The CIRCLE OF SIN
There is a pattern in life that seems recurring. It goes like this.
A sinner sees the need to be saved. His sin is recognized for what it is. He repents of his sin and turns to Jesus our Lord and Savior.
The sinner grows in the Lord and his life becomes filled with joy and he prospers.
The sinner in this prosperity begins to drift away from the Lord; his thoughts have become consumed with the GOOD LIFE.
The sinner begins to spiral into sin again and the Lord is set aside.
Then one day the sinner becomes aware of the sinful destruction in his life and again turns to the Lord for help.
And the cycle goes on unless the sinner realizes that only in Jesus is there true rest, joy,peace AND DIRECTION.
FBC JAX seems to have gotten into the sin of not preaching the GOSPEL and Doctrine. They are SPIRALING in their sin. Destruction is all around them.
One day soon they will realize their error and will again turn to the Lord and begin to PREACH THE GOSPEL AS THE LORD COMMANDED.
IT IS NOT TOO LATE!
Matt: To answer your question about why the Lindsays wanted the church to grow. This is sort of a misnomer regarding them. Keep in mind they were of the old school (thank God) where a pastor was the shepard of his local flock. They did exactly that. Another thing is they were not interested in the "Church Growth" scenario or movement. I have heard them preach that when a church stops growing, people are not getting saved. They believed that leading people to Jesus was their mission, and they wanted these people under their ministry, so they knew exactly what the new converts were being taught, and who was doing the teaching. They took their ministry seriously. I have heard them say, "I have to answer to God for my ministry". So the satelite church situation was of no interest to them. They wanted everyone under "one roof", so to speak, as they knew these people were going to grow in knowledge of Jesus Christ and in His Holy Word, which they taught diligently. I heard them say, they were not interested in just "growing" a church or in numbers for the sake of numbers, and having a "big church". They said numbers meant Salvation and growing in the Grace of Jesus. I have heard "other preachers talk about "growing the church". Ususally this means they want a big church to brag about to their "buddies" at the conferences. They think if they can get big numbers in the church by whatever tactics, then this must mean they are really pleasing God and doing Gods work. When as we see in the Purpose Driven movement of today, it does exactly the opposite. I knew the Lindsays and saw how their ministries were centered entirely on Jesus Christ, and preaching the word so that people would come to saving Grace. They wanted people to know His Word so that they could grow spiritually. This was their very simple key to success. It was always about Jesus!!! Trust me they did it right!!!
They supported missions and left that work to the missionaries. We had several in the church. The Lindsays job was to be the local shepard.
R.O.STONE: I am assuming this is Rick. If so Rick so good to hear from you. You were the best. You had such Godly parents, that always uplifted Jesus, and uplifted us. What times we had when R.O., and Angie, were here in our church. I remember you and your brothers as little boys. Your Mother and Dad were so proud of such fine young men, and rightly so. Hope all is well with you and your family.
Matt: Just as information FBCJ assisted missionaries directly out of their budget for many years and still does. It also lent financial support to a church in Nitoroy Brazil building a SS building, it associated with FBC Daytona Beach Fl, the Student Center at Jacksonville University and gave the building and land to them. It also started a church in Russia. But most importantly it was the plan to remain in the center of downtown Jacksonville which draws from all sectors of the city. This is why we had the slogan: "The Miracle of Downtown Jacksonville". And "That Jacksonville May Know Christ". This church was leading people to the Lord downtown, when others were fleeing to the suburbs.
"Keep in mind they were of the old school (thank God) where a pastor was the shepard of his local flock."
Can you show me that in scripture? I am having a hard time finding where one guy is the shepherd. I am not trying to be contentious just there are some things we believe because they have always been that way. Not because they are taught in scripture.
Anon 4:34 Blessings my friend. Those were exciting days in the old Hobson Auditorium. My brothers and I have so many fond memories of FBC Jax (and skiing on the Ortega River).
My mom and dad always felt that those Godly women were the backbone. They all came to FBC right out of college to work with Sr and gave their entire life to this church, plus, you could not have asked for more humble and Godly ladies than both Mrs Lindsay's.
FBC Jax was a blessed church and I will always count it all joy to have served here with my family.
Matt, thank you, thank you, thank you! I am the one that asked for your insight and I really appreciate your time so much.
You see, I was under Mac for a couple of years at First D. My city is home to, and breeding ground, for the modern mega. By the way, Mac had a body guard here. I really was naive about church until I started going there. I eventually became so miserable both in and out of church, (and I thought it was just me) that I had to leave in order to save my sanity. It took me a long time to recover emotionally and to "deprogram."
The staff and members treat each other horribly. I always said after the whole experience that I get treated better "out in the world" than I did by these church people (!) Matt - it was abuse up and down the ladder, from the seasoned vets to the fresh-meat just out of seminary. They don't care about MOST people - they just don't. Money and status was what counted. The arrogance and CONCEIT were just sickening and soul-crushing!!
You are dead-on about it being a business. Mac had us do Purpose-Driven for 40 days. Most of the churches here are going that way and seminary students I meet adore RW. I also find the shopping mall mentality truly disgusting and heart-breaking. Really wrenching to see the materialsm in these places.
What really, really, made my heart wrench was when you told of the Monday morning Brinks truck. I feel completely exploited for every dollar I gave to that church. I don't have a lot and to know it went to pad already sky-high salaries (and spouses's Neiman's bill) just kills me! A stick-up man has more dignity in his theivery than these clergy people!!
I encourage you to write your book and please keep us apprised. Many of us need this. I've been reading books on Spritual Abuse and receovery but there is not much out there and most of it is dated information. Those of us crushed by the mega, and those of us that see the scammage that it is really would like to see a true expose on it. I look forward to hearing more of your insights, here at this blog or elsewhere.
WD - thank you for all that you have done. Like Adrian Rogers said once, "(certain people) are living high, wide and handsome and they are not going to get away with their sin!" Thank you for not letting Mac get away with it like he did here in Dallas (although he seems to have gotten much worse in Jax, like he and wifey have been "given over" to their ways). Soo many people are fooled. Prayerfully, alot of people will soon see the scales fall from their eyes.
"I've been reading books on Spritual Abuse and receovery but there is not much out there and most of it is dated information."
I find this blog very helpful in matters of spiritual abuse. On the right hand side of this blog, it has lot of material to help people.
Cindy Kunsman: Under Much Grace Blog
Matt: I am using the sheperd as a metaphor to describe how the Lindsays served the members of their church. You would have to understand how these men felt about their responsibility to the Lord and to their church. They were very protective as to what doctrines were taught and they really cared about the people. Like a sheperd cares for his flock. Pastor and people. Always watching over them and their spiritual welfare. There would be no false doctrines enter this church. Nor would any social agenda, enter. Certainly no Purpose Driven type agenda ruining so many churches today. They were always pointing to Jesus. As I have said these were two unique men that God used mightily. Dr. Lindsay Sr., used to say about men becoming deacons and leaders in the church. Before appointing any one, especially a young man..."Try the Spirit". Good advice even now. Dr.Lindsay Jr., said several times, he was jealous of his pulpit. No one was going to bring false doctrine into his pulpit to lead the people astray. We don't find many preachers like this now. I am sure there are some good ones left, but few.
I agree with you about the sorry mess that churches are in now, including FBCJ. Much pain and suffering are coming from these institutions. My point to you was ONCE UPON A TIME, in the past, there were two giants for the Lord, named Lindsay.
The worst part of this whole thing is that somehow the group @FBC found a way to go to the State Attorney's office with the alleged accusations & that's how they got Comcast (or whoever the internet connection supplier is for the blog) -- at least that's what the deacons were told -- to give up the name of the person who has this blog or the e-mail address or something. They had to have lied in order to get a court order because I've never read any slander on this blog. The worst you could say is that things have been put in the form of questions. Just in case they are moving in the direction of a kangaroo court, Mr. Watchdog, I'm wondering if you should add a letter to the blog address. Maybe like an extra "F" making it FFBC Watchdog -- or something like that in order to avoid using the church name.
I noticed in the photo that it looked like more than a couple people didn't stand up. Or am I just seeing things? I was farther back so you couldn't see me sitting down. It was intimidating but I refused to stand up. I wonder if all those who remained seated will be notified (by letter of course) of their misguided willingness to cause disruption or negativity and "whereas they will be asked to shape up or ship out."
Thy peace gave you a link to a blog that will really help you. This wonderful woman is a Christian who writes about abherrant groups and has studied cult tactics deeply. You could spend hours there. She writes a lot about Patriarchy groups but the tactics are the same. YOu must realize that FBCJ is a cult of personality and is using cult tactics to keep folks in line.
I highly recommend her writings and research. And I know she loves our Lord and wants to see people heal.
And I agree with you that FBC Dallas is one of the worst BUT, they are just ONE of many. Trust me on this.
What gets to me sometimes is how I could read Matthew 5-7 back then and it not slay my soul. It was hardened. I can only praise God that He caused a crisis for me to FINALLY see the light and come out from the darkness.
"I am using the sheperd as a metaphor to describe how the Lindsays served the members of their church. You would have to understand how these men felt about their responsibility to the Lord and to their church. They were very protective as to what doctrines were taught and they really cared about the people."
He actually sounds like a true overseer. Please forgive me but I get nervous when I hear a mere man praised for a church. We are all depraved sinners saved by grace. Even the pastor. The most humble servant of all should be the elders. We are all ministers with 'anointing' if we are saved. (1 John) We have no laity. Just ordinary saved folks who are gifted by the Holy Spirit. I get nervous when mere men are elevated.
We should be determined that only Jesus Christ get the glory for all things. No humans.
Count the people in the photo.
It looked like 1/4 of the people,discounting the deacons on the front row, were not standing. That is more than a few people against THE RESOLUTION.
Dr. Lindsay used to say if you are going to CHANGE something; a couple people against is OK.
1/4 of the members AGAINST THE RESOLUTION IS HUGE.
That is 1 in 4, 10 in 40, 100 in 400, 1000 in 4000. It is no wonder that there is so much turmoil at FBCJ. A quarter of the people don't support the pastor.
Anon 6:04 said that Mac had Dallas do PURPOSE-DRIVEN FOR 40 DAYS.
Mac said FBCJAX was not going PURPOSE DRIVEN. ????
Could it be that the reason FBCJAX is in so much turmoil is because Mac has CHANGED the church into a HEARTLESS PURPOSE DRIVEN, SEEKER SENSITIVE, PRAGMATIC, COMMUNITY LIKE CHURCH? Is that why 1/4 of the people did not stand at the business meeting?
When is Mac going to RETHINK PD?
When are the Deacons going to realize that PD is ruining the church?
I must forewarn that my knowledge of SBC politics is little, but reading some of the comments on Wade's blog and this blog, I see lot of similarities in patterns. See if you can see them also here, here and here.
People probably didn't stand because nobody really wants it dictated to them what they can say and what they can't. Does that not go against free will?
I am massively disillusioned with the church and with Christians right now. I mean BIG TIME disillusioned.
Im still trying to figure out what the "lie" is watchdog.
Read Watchdog's post again, and see my February 27th 8:53 p.m. near the top of this comment thread. That should answer your question.
I'm not the same "Anon" with which you've been discussing the Lindsays, but I just wanted to add my two cents.
I don't think the Lindsays are being praised for the church. They are being remembered positively because both Jr. and Sr. Lindsays were humble and sincere men.
Mrs. Lindsay is still someone I refer to as an example of what a godly wife should be.
They did not care about status and Mrs. Lindsay would be seen sitting with a variety of the "normal" people in the church. They honestly and truly cared for the members and the rest of the city.
I believe they will always be remembered fondly.
This does NOT mean that they always made the right decisions for the church.
Dr. Lindsay Jr. was known for some crazy ideas (anyone remember the lighthouse?), but you always knew that his thought process was focused on how we might reach the city of Jacksonville for Christ.
T, I strongly recommend that you take down the alleged post from R.O. Stone, and any reference to it. R. O. Stone is with the Lord and this is an affront to his memory. It is a lie and I know it, and leaving it up does not do any good to let folks think that it is Rick, when it is factually not. Maybe you do not, but Rick is a long time personal friend and he would never lend his name to your blog for any reason. Other than Rick being one of my best friends, whoever did the post knows absolutely nothing about Rick and his family. I can prove that the post is fake, but do not want to reveal the information so that others cannot fake a post. Thanks.
After the way Rick was railroaded out of FBC Jax and NO ONE (including you) stood up for him? No one needs friends like that.
I don't know about the comment from Stone but I do think that R.O. (as would Sr and Jr)would roll in their grave if they knew what was happening at FBC Jax. I promise you this, AC and the other girlie men would NEVER behave like they are today if the real men (or women) were still running things.
I was a friend of R.O. and the Lindsay's and you sir are no friend. Since you refer to the WD as T, you must be one of the blinded sheeple and I strongly recommend you read this entire blog and get your head out of the sand.
To Mr. Anon 8:32
So you want to strongly recommend....mmmmm sounds like a veiled threat and over what? Some R.O. Stone (sounds like a porn star) comments and you have your drawers in a McDonald wad? You sound like one of the hatchet men running things down at that church. You never deny what Stone is saying you just don't like his name.
More smoke and mirrors from (I quote Anon 12:29) GIRLIE MEN.
WOW Watchdog... RO Stone and Red Jones have been dead for many years. I know you think you have power, but I don't believe those are writing on this blog. Especially RO Stone, he was way to spiritual for this!
anon 12:29 Who railroaded Rick out? It was not Mac Brunson. It was the very pastors that all of you holier than thou FBC members, former members, supposed members, and church haters have been sanctifying on this blog. The sad part of this blog and others like them is that they are all hearsay. Everyone keeps throwing out Matthew 18. It was WD who first had some type of issue in his mind. Why did he not take his own advice and go directly to the pastor of FBC and confront him? When I graduated from UF School of Law I attended FBC for a few years before moving back home to Dallas. I never attended FBC Dallas but I also never heard anything bad about Brunson either.
As far as friends go, I surely would not have you as one. As far as Rick goes that was the Lord's way of moving him to greater ministry opportunities. Although it was initially not a pleasant experience, it turned out to be a great blessing to him, his family and his ministry. So I say to you anon 12:29 do not be so quick to condemn.
As far as hearsay goes, if WD thinks that he has been wronged and his civil rights violated bring a suit.
I think the fact that he has not brought suit indicates that his blog is just hearsay.
It works both ways though. If he sues FBC and cannot document his case and they can then he would be the one to face any legal consequences.
Back up the blog with a lawsuit. I support your right of free speach, but I do condemn the harm that this blog is bringing to the Church. For all you FBC haters that is Christ's Church not first baptist church.
T Rex and Thy Peace should also join the suit. They obviously want to see the Church of Jesus Christ in turmoil. I am sure that WD can get them and others to enjoin him on the suit.
I read one other post that "people" are calling wd's new church. If some of the other little people in the town are doing that then a pox on their house. But just like this blog and another one for that matter you cannot believe anything. All of the "documentation" WD has put on this blog would not hold up in any court that I have practiced in front of.
I am sure that the Lord is "pleased" with all of this negativity. Why doesn't every get a grip of their lives and do something positive. FBC and WD.
If I was WD's new pastor I too would be concerned that he would not find something that he did not like and start blogging against him. I read his comments on tithing and new that they were way out in left field from the teachings of Scripture that I learned, and not from the Baptist Church either.
Please, can't all of you folks in Jacksonville just get along. And if y'all can't then don't take things in your own hands with gossip and innuendo and blogging- GO TO COURT!!!!!!!!!!!!
"Back up the blog with a lawsuit. I support your right of free speach, but I do condemn the harm that this blog is bringing to the Church. For all you FBC haters that is Christ's Church not first baptist church."
I heard this one thrown out quite a bit to rile up folks. Problem is two fold: 1 Corin 6 will be used against you if you ever decided to do such a thing. They would love to trot out that passage to prove WD is not a Christian. (Even though they used the 'system' with the trespass order)
And, it is near impossible to sue a church. they are quite protected and as a lawyer, you should know that.
Don't bite. This is a strawman.
"All of the "documentation" WD has put on this blog would not hold up in any court that I have practiced in front of. "
That is because you take a worldly view as our system does. This is not about what is illegal in the world's system.
Some folks will never get it. That is ok. Some will and will come out from her.
Anon 2:01 What me dead?
What are you another Girlie Man?
And you Mr Smarty Pants elitists ambulance chasing lawwww-yer Anon6:19. Are we suppose to be impressssed?
You know-it-all types are the driving force behind this FBC tea party. The elitist lawyers and their buddies may be in charge now but we shall overcome.......
Bring it DOGGGGG we got your back!
Matt, these clowns just keep at it. They come on here and spit their Mc-Miss-Information and then run, never to be heard from again. Other places these guys are referred to as Trolls.
McTrolls: apologists for McDonald
McClowns: See McTrolls
As Red Stone Arse-nal said:
We got your back dog (and they are starting to get desperate).
I happened on your site while looking for contact info on Ponchus Soud to thank him (really)for enlightening me to the reality of the crooked ways power and the law actually works.
I say "actually" because before being in his court I would never have believed Cops lie under oath and Judges (at least Ponchus does)twist the law to suit their view of justice.
This happened over twenty years ago and believe it or not, I am thankful because I saw the truth of how corupt power works.
I was also a member of FBC fourty years ago and left because it was all about the money. I returned years later still looking for God and found only pious people secure in their hand made temple.
I wiped my feet and haven't returned but I found God and believe me if you are looking at this church to find him, you won't.
I learned something else a few years back and that was; pray for my enemies because they were lost, and in order for me not to loose myself I had to forgive even the most haneous transgression.
I know you are offended by what you see at FBC because I have seen it also, but turn away and don't look back because God has chosen to save you and there is nothing of him behind.
A great evil has befallen our country and it is to that calling you must go to save Judas. If your heart is pure so will be your prayer for understanding.
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