Friday, July 30, 2010

James White Bears False Witness

Tonight the Dividing Line internet program hosted by Mr. James White included a segment where he once again attacked me. I can easily get beyond his typical tyrant of calling people "emotional" and "naive" knowing that he uses these second and third only to calling people "liars" in that order. I am not into demeaning people to prove that I am right but I realize that this does occur. What I am against is being misrepresented and lied about. I had decided to not post on this garbage again but tonight realized that I could not allow Mr. Whites misrepresentation of me to stand. He crossed a line that no Christian should cross while claiming to call another to repentance. A person who claims to be a scholar and apologist should know and practice real research. Care should be taken to seek the truth by such a person.

Tonight, Mr. White showed that his research methods are more than lacking. In fact a caller that was announced by Mr. White as "being lost/dropped" evidently tried to clarify a point. And it was here that Mr. White revealed his carelessness and lack of thorough research; not to mention his absence of professionalism and Biblical conduct. Mr. White, this is not a game and this not about wining points.

What occurred?

Mr. White was trying to show that the only defenders of Dr. Caner are people closely tied to him and thus, emotionally charged and blinded to the truth (his version of the truth). He revealed that he had found a website that listed me serving on the Board of Directors of Watchman Fellowship with Dr. Caner. Thus it was easy to explain, in his mind and words, my emotional defense due to our closeness. According to Mr. White, the caller mentioned above, called to let Mr. White know that I had not served on the board of Watchman since 2009. Mr. White in making this announcement said the information was not relevant because all one had to do was to look at the web page and they would see the information for themselves that we had served together. He brushed off the information the caller must have given to someone before being dropped.

Yet when you see what was going on behind the scenes and know the real facts, you will see a major problem here:

1. I received an email letting me know that Mr. White was indeed going to use me in his program.

2. Mr. White was notified that indeed I had not served on the board since early 2009 via email.

3. Mr. White did not acknowledge the email response that stated the above.

4. I was indeed listening to the whole thing as it unfolded.

5. The email sent to Watchman was sent just before the program began. Christ-like?

6. I was never called or emailed.

7. His only research was an internet search. He took the information of his search and presented it as fact and reason for me defending Caner.

8. He failed to clarify the specifics that he had been given and remember he excused them when a caller tried to clarify.

But there is more. Had Mr. White done his research beyond a mere internet search, he could have easily discovered that which totally disproves his presentation and misrepresentation of me. Had he common courtesy and professionalism he would have called or emailed me with time for response. Neither was done. Integrity would demand that if you are going to accuse someone of something you would at least seek to have a first hand understanding of that which you were presenting and would know that your facts were indeed accurate. His intent was to simply malign me.
What he did was bear false witness against me and completely misrepresents me and my connection with Dr. Caner. For you see, at no time during my serving on the Board of Watchman Fellowship did Dr. Caner and I simultaneously attend a meeting. More, during my and Dr. Caners tenure on the board, I never had any contact with Dr. Caner relating to the ministry of Watchman Fellowship or anything else; I never spoke with or emailed Dr. Caner at all regarding anything. There was no contact. None!

Mr. White fabricated the whole connection thing. There is no excuse for such. He has no knowledge of that which he presented tonight beyond his computer screen.

Internet searches do not make for research. In this case, they actually led to Mr. White bearing false witness against me and Dr. Caner. Why? In his drive to impugn me and others, while destroying Dr. Caner, he obviously spends considerable time simply scouring the internet for anything that will help his cause with little care or effort to seek if it is true, complete, or even relevant. This is not research. It is an inside glimpse into the mess that he continues to promote. It is common among several bloggers to do the same. He is not alone. But this does not make it right.

When people make the claim, "research has revealed", one better question the research. Mr. White has proven that research does not always mean real research. The information being shared to prove a point may indeed be nothing at all and just might be totally wrong and fabricated.

I find myself at a loss in understanding why Mr. White has not emailed or called me to verify his supposed inside knowledge of me and my motivations, state of emotions and personality. This is not the first time he has mentioned me in such derogatory manner.
He does not know me nor does he closely know anyone else who knows me. One can only wonder why a Christian would attack another in such manner and carelessness for truth and reliability. But we all need to grasp with clarity the seriousness of bearing false witness against a brother or sister in Christ; or anyone else for that matter. My conversations with Dr. Ergun Caner have been minimal at best until this year. But Mr. White did not know this. In fact, had he integrity, he would have researched this before attacking me as emotionally tied to Dr. Caner. His presentation about me tonight thus, was a total lie. It was an intentional fabricated conclusion based on internet searches only. No facts were contained at all beyond the one that I did serve on the Watchman Board as did Dr. Caner. Everything else was assumed. And it was assumed wrong.

Think about what occurred tonight. Mr. White brushed off the "lost" caller and the point of the above while continuing to promote his fabrication to his listeners the segment about me. Mr. White did not know that Caner and I were never at a meeting together nor did he research it. He simply assumed. Mr. White was bearing false witness. He made up a charge to strengthen his points of discrediting people who stand with Dr. Caner. He used "Enquirer" type tactics in informing Watchman of the program content by doing so as the show was beginning. He failed to inform his listeners that he had no knowledge of me and that his research and conclusions were merely leaps of assumptions birthed in limited internet research.

I have been misrepresented many a time for stands I have taken over the years by people who do not know Jesus and some who do. But never before tonight has a Christian or lost person so misrepresented and bore false witness as Mr. White did in such a public manner. It is a revelation into his methods and tactics that are appalling. It makes one wonder about his attacks on others?

But I think the real question is "What on earth would motivate him to stoop to this level?"

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Caner Attackers and the Military

Rumor has it that the men out to destroy a brother in Christ are about to use the military in their approach. I have it on good word that Dr. Ergun Caner has been notified that another video is about to be released with the intent of stirring the military emotions and thus rally another group to the frying. Our heroes in the military deserve better than to be used as pawns in this ridiculous evil game. Their claim of him doing them harm is disgusting and disingenuous. There will be nothing new in this or that not answered by men such as Norman Geisler. Men like Smathers are attempting to search and destroy even though the committee has acted.

Here are a few points:

1. It is easy to notice lately that the story was about to play out. Another attack is required to keep the front lines going. Why? There is nothing new in their "new" revelation.

2. The cry is for this continued pressure to force "repentance" out of Dr. Caner. They are good at playing God. This is clearly a case of piling on. While Dr. Caner has publicly repented both in a public statement as well as in a Campus Church venue, and while Dr. Caner is no longer president of LBTS, these hateful men want a scarlet letter for him to wear. It seems that unless Dr. Caner repents in front of them, God will not grant forgiveness.

3. Who determined that these James Whites minions (remember this is their own name) have the role of knowing whether or not this repentance is needed? Who set them up as the one's to motivate this activity? And just why was the Feb 25TH statement not enough? What about the actions of Liberty? He is no longer Dean. Could it be that this continued attack simply proves they want destruction regardless of their cries?

4. I still am trying to find in the Bible where it says that people are to manipulate repentance from someone? Can we say obsession? They want something yet to be defined and are quick to change the "game" and definitions etc. just to keep the story going. Human pressure is NEVER God's method for God's activity.

5. In their cries for integrity and self proclaimed holiness they are easily forgetting about the consistent scriptural commands to leave the role of Judge and Juror to God.

6. It is also noted that lately we discover that many of these "men" are also now blogging under the disguise of historical figures names. So much for integrity. But do not forget that they love to publish to the world the names of those who disagree with them. And when they make their silly phone calls to stir up trouble, they attacks, abuse, and hide their identity best they can. The phrase "Man up boys" just seems fitting here.

No doubt these young minds who follow a man with too much time on his hands, will continue in their pursuit to do whatever it is, and however it is defined, to Dr. Caner until who knows when.

All one has to do is read my last post to discover that REAL Ministry and REAL Evangelism are more than missing today. These minions and their little to do leader, are clearly bringing this point home.

Christianity can and must do much better than this. May we all remember this simple passage of scripture:

1 Pet 4:7-11
7 But the end of all things is at hand; therefore be serious and watchful in your prayers.
8 And above all things have fervent love for one another, for "love will cover a multitude of sins."
9 Be hospitable to one another without grumbling.
10 As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.
11 If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God. If anyone ministers, let him do it as with the ability which God supplies, that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belong the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.

Monday, July 26, 2010

"Get Real"

In my early years I was given the opportunity to work as an umpire. At the age of fourteen, wearing the uniform and calling people out though cool, was nothing compared to getting paid. At $10 per game (in the 80's), two games per night, and averaging 3 nights a week, I was doing alright. I umpired all through High School and even built an Umpire Association that handled games all over the DFW area. It was awesome and yet I learned quickly that the money was not as easy as it first appeared. Often I would hear the phrase (among others) "get real!" And as I was reflecting on that today I realized something incredible.

We know an umpire has to make tough calls, deal with dads reliving their youth and moms who can scream like no one else, and grandparents who just cannot see from the bleachers what can be seen on the field. Most nights there will be that one or two calls that make for some fireworks. I actually loved all of it. I did not worry when I got home and I never was scared during some of those intense moments (though I would be in 2010 I think!). Calling a play or a pitch was just that. I called them like I saw them. Umpires back then did not have instant replay as they do now. You saw the play and you called it. Some calls were good while others were pathetic. One's perspective usually decided one's response.

Perspectives have always played a role in sports and I am learning that today perspectives are playing a major role in churches and ministries. The human factor, as in umpiring, is prone to mistakes. But more than mistakes, the human factor can also be a path for missing God. In umpiring, it is just a game. In ministry, it is heaven or hell for people.

We are now living in the midst of one of the most challenging times in ministry. People no longer look to God's Word for their marching orders. Ministry is driven by human desires, likes, and preferences. Evangelism is often relative to one's perspective instead of God's directive. Trying to discern what REAL ministry is, and what REAL evangelism is can be troublesome it seams. Even the largest gathering of Baptist in the world approved a report this summer called the Great Commission Resurgence. But in passing the report, I wonder how many people realized that no where in the report was a definition of the Gospel or Evangelism?

We have churches today who take "mission trips" that are really glorified vacations. We have church members who will refuse to support reaching people in their own community for a number of reasons and yet dare to call the church they attend a ministry. We will send money all over the world and clothes the same, but will not spend more than 2% of a church budget (on ave) to reach children in our community.

We need an umpire like moment. The REAL is missing from Biblical Missions and Biblical Evangelism. America is proof that American Christianity loves the glory but will not sweat or sacrifice much to do the REAL. I Pastor a church that is breaking out of this norm. I serve and lead a national ministry that is charting the course of lean for the sake of churches and ministries all over America. Neither are easy. But the fruit of REAL compared to the norm of human ideas is staggering.

Try allowing God to be the umpire of your life. He NEVER makes bad or wrong calls. This week join me in asking some tough questions about life, ministry and evangelism. Is ministry and evangelism REAL or more about you? Are you a person who promotes and encourages your church to do more REAL ministry and evangelism? As our supreme play caller, only God should be leading us in these areas. Self should be out! Are you allowing God to make the calls?

People here at home and around the world need us to get busy doing the REAL ministry and REAL evangelism that God has so called each of us to.

It's time we "GET REAL!"

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Mature vs. Arrogant

Life is full of lessons. Teaching moments come at us from every angle. For a person to be taught, some maturity is required. I think this holds true even more so as we grow older. Maturity recognizes the need for continued learning. Maturity knows from old lessons that there is much still to learn.

Arrogance is totally the opposite. Arrogance portrays itself as the one who knows better and often more and obviously applies this in thus trying to teach others. Arrogance is an absence of humility and an unwillingness to admit that wrong could apply to one's own life.

Today arrogance is running wild. We see it growing in supposed Christian circles. People have fallen in love with pointing out supposed sin in the lives of others but will deny and excuse sin in their own life. The spiritual arrogance of today is worse than cancer.

This week in the adult track of our VBS I was privileged to watch spiritual maturity win out over arrogance. I watched a group of older adults learn about the culture of today and how ministry must be focused. They were challenged with a world that does not make sense to them and yet willing to learn. Why?

Maturity in spiritual issues always revolves around a simple principle - People Need Jesus! When one is mature enough to know this, it changes everything. Our arrogance is chopped when we see the need the need of others. Our desire for spiritual self elevation crumbles when we realize the lostness of the world and the call on each of our lives to share Jesus in this lostness.

Are you mature or arrogant? Do you spend your time pointing out the faults of others are ministering the Gospel of Jesus? May God grow us more mature!

Arrogance loves to attack. Maturity fights for the individual!

Romans 9: 1-3 is the perfect picture of spiritual maturity!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

When we do ministry

This week we are in hosting our annual VBS which includes an Adult track. In the past we have brought in people to do studies on special subjects. This year I felt led to do a Vision 20/20 series. So I am breaking down each aspect of the church and leading in discussing the needs both spiritually and physically of each area. I love the discussion and I really love the catching of the vision that is taking place.

Our discussion so far has uncovered a great truth that I have not been able to get out of my head. There are many people in the pew who are tired and frankly sick of all the fussing and fighting that churches can be known for. I was shocked to hear this aspect shared from all generations. We currently have no major issues in our church which makes it a peaceful experience. We get along and when we do struggle with understanding, we work it out. But though I knew this was not the case in many churches, I never realized how adamant people in the pew were getting about this bad behavior.

As we have been sharing the needs of ministries I have once again been filled with the awesome truth that I think we each need to regain and live in. It is a simple truth. It is a powerful truth.

If we would all get busy reaching people with the Gospel, we would discover that we have little time left for fussing and complaining.

May we apply this truth and reap the fruit!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

When Critics Go To Far

Many years back a song was circulating around called "Chunkin Rocks". The song tells the story about Christians who love to blast others with words and more just to put them down. It was so many years ago that I cannot find the lyrics to the song nor have I been successful in locating them on the internet. Maybe I will soon.

I have never been able to comprehend the bashing that some Christians do towards others. It has become clear that the majority of Christians do not fit in this model of behavior and I am grateful for that. But the few who do, do so with such loud and screeching noise that it gives the appearance that there are more. The level that one must lower themselves to in generating the bash is staggering. And we are told that the over riding mission in chunkin' rocks is to self elevate. We tear down to build up and yet our tearing down actually destroys us.

Have you examined your speech lately? Do you find your relationship with others drenched in edifying communication? The Bible speaks so clearly on this subject. Notice the words:

Col 4:6
6 Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one.

Even in times of correction, the word "always" clearly does away with much of the excuses that one hears for violating the truths of this verse. When a person makes mistakes, correction is important. Correction that follows the truth of God's Word will produce fruit. When correction moves outside of this truth, the result will not be a fruitful one. When we seek to literally play the role of God and His Holy Spirit, we easily move away from correction. To sin while trying to point out the errors of another is not Biblical. it produces nothing Godly.

May God raise up many more Christians who understand the power of speech and who live a life of redemptive speech with other people. Should you discover a lake or stream of water, a rock is great to chunk (fun actually). But to throw a rock at people is to destroy one's own life and testimony. No good comes from chunkin" rocks at people!

Now if I could just find the lyrics to that song!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Why the change?

I announced several weeks ago that I was about to make some major changes to my blogging. The following are some thoughts that have driven this change. I love the use of media. In the early 90's I began using all types of media in worship services. From television to radio and now the internet, the paths for sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ and assisting each other in their daily walk are numerous.

Blogging has become a strange world. Though I love many aspects of it, some of blogging makes my stomach turn. It is these things that have drawn me back to my true purpose for living and my guiding parameters for all I do. Spending time arguing with people who just want to argue will not lead others to Christ. Seldom do these arguments change much of anything. That in and of itself makes for a huge waste of time and sin.

A new pattern is emerging with blogging. Agenda driven attacks are becoming the norm. These attacks are rooted in aggressive Reformed camps who have taken upon themselves to "clean up" churches all across the land and spread the New Covenant Theology as fast as they can. Beyond the attacks are the simple facts that most of these bloggers are young and inexperienced Pastors or lay people who have much bitterness and hatred aimed at Pastors and aggressive/faithful Evangelistic ministries. The move is on to derail these ministries in the internet world and thus scar reputations and character. Mind you that none of the attackers have much credibility if any to begin with and then note that often their so called evidence is hearsay gossip driven by a few spin masters driving the show.

We as Christians can and must do better than this. I will no longer get involved in the garbage and division being spread by those who have little desire to spread the Gospel to the lost and hurting of this world. Our time here on earth is quickly coming to an end. Our focus cannot waver from the mission assigned by our Lord - to reach the world with the Gospel.

I pray you will find this blog as an asset to your daily walk with Christ and that people from all over the world will read and experience the only salvation offered to man through Jesus Christ. Jesus died so that all would have the opportunity to experience this salvation. May we pray that many will receive.

I like change! Especially the change that Jesus makes in one's life!

The Change Begins

With this post the approach to blogging and interaction in the blog world is changing for me. Beginning next Monday, the site will be focused on the edification of people in their relationship with Christ. Comments will be moderated. We will discuss sermons that I preach (which will be available at this site and iTunes).

Another feature that will be added in the Fall is that I will begin a once a month (to start with) video sharing of thoughts relating to current events and how we as Christians can live our lives to make a difference in our communities, states, nation, and around the world. Sometime in the Fall or early Spring, our Winning Truth Telecast will be returning.

It is going to be a fun ride! See you along the journey!

Friday, July 9, 2010

When Christians sell out to other religions

The following article, from Fox News, needs to be read by every Christian in America. We are being told that we must be inclusive. I wonder when we will realize that in so doing, we will give away our very freedoms that so many fought and died for? If the following scenario continues to go unchallenged and we continue to see Christians sell out to a lie of passive compromise we will see the end of more than we can realize in a very short time.

by Todd Starnes

A North Carolina pastor was relieved of his duties as an honorary chaplain of the state house of representatives after he closed a prayer by invoking the name of Jesus.

“I got fired,” said Ron Baity, pastor of Berean Baptist Church in Winston-Salem. He had been invited to lead prayer for an entire week but his tenure was cut short when he refused to remove the name Jesus from his invocation.

Baity’s troubles began during the week of May 31. He said a House clerk asked to see his prayer. The invocation including prayers for our military, state lawmakers and a petition to God asking him to bless North Carolina.”

“When I handed it to the lady, I watched her eyes and they immediately went right to the bottom of the page and the word Jesus,” he told FOX News Radio. “She said ‘We would prefer that you not use the name Jesus. We have some people here that can be offended.’”

When Baity protested, she brought the matter to the attention of House Speaker Joe Hackney.

“I told her I was highly offended when she asked me not to pray in the name of Jesus because that does constitute my faith,” Baity said. “My faith requires that I pray in His name. The Bible is very clear.”

When the clerk returned, Baity said he was told that he would be allowed to deliver the day’s prayer – but after that – his services would no longer be needed.

Hackney, a Democrat, and House Republican Leader Paul Stam released a joint statement to FOX News Radio:

“It has been our practice in the North Carolina House of Representatives for many years to request, but not require, that our guest chaplains deliver a nonsectarian prayer. This is intended as a show of respect for all the religions practiced by the members of the House and the people we represent.”

“In this instance, we allowed Pastor Baity to deliver his prayer, without interference, even though it was sectarian in nature. Nonetheless, we will review our procedures and guidelines concerning guest chaplains, and we will make sure we abide by applicable constitutional procedures. The House will adjourn within the next few days, but the results of this review will be publicly available whenever it is complete.”

Baity said he’s not happy with the way he was treated.

“When the state tells you how to pray, that you cannot use the name of Jesus – that’s mandating a state religion,” he said. “They talk about not offending other people but at the same time, if they are telling me how to pray – that’s the very thing our forefathers left England for.”

The Christian Law Association helped Baity draft a letter asking for an apology and an opportunity to return to the state capitol and finish his tenure.

“The First Amendment promises all Americans the free exercise of their religion, which includes the right to pray as their faith requires, even when they are invited to open state legislative sessions with prayer,” attorney David Gibbs told WXII-TV. “We trust that the North Carolina House of Representatives will realize its mistake and will offer Pastor Baity another opportunity to pray without requiring him to use a prayer that is mandated by government.”

Baity said he is still stunned by what happened.

“You would expect this somewhere else – Cuba, Saudi Arabia,” he told FOX News Radio. “You would never anticipate this happening in the United States of America.”

In a word – the pastor said – the decision is “anti-Christian.”