Who is @Rhology? What are #pulpiteers? How Do They Function?

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Alan Maricle aka @Rhology defends and imitates J.D. Hall’s (aka @pulpitandpen) bad behavior on Twitter.

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Admin note:  I’m going to take the easy route here and jump into a situation to discuss it without giving a lot of background. However, if you want to know the background of this story, please visit Wartburg Watch blog and read Dee’s excellent article, JD Hall and Friends: “Theological Thuggery” and Braxton Caner’s Suicide.

Ok, the brief background to this story is concerning J.D. Hall, the lead pastor at Fellowship Baptist Church in Sidney, Montana. He maintains a blog, does frequent podcasts, and has an online presence on Twitter as @PulpitandPen. J.D. Hall has been going after Ergun Caner on Twitter for quite some time. It was when he started tweeting Caner’s 15-yr old son, Braxton, that it crossed the line for me. I saw the behavior as highly inappropriate.

Late in July, Braxton Caner committed suicide. The blogosphere and those who have been following this story on Twitter have been responding to this situation, calling Hall’s twitter behavior as bullying and saying that the tweets could have contributed to his suicide. There has been media outrage about this. And rightly so.

Last night, I woke up in the middle of the night and shouldn’t have looked at my phone, but when I did, I saw that @Rhology had responded to a tweet of mine.  Earlier in the day, I had responded to this.

 

Screen Shot 2014-08-06 at 8.58.37 AM

 

Well, now at nearly 3AM my time, he was engaging me.  I responded a few times and realized it was futile. You can find that conversation here on a Storify I created:

@Rhology, a #pulpiteers, and defender of J.D. Hall shows us what his kind of Christian love looks like

 

This is a good sampling of what @Rhology is like and how he interacts with people on Twitter.

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Who is @Rhology?

I found his name listed at J.D. Hall’s blog site, Pulpit and Pen:

Alan Maricle is an abolitionist living in Oklahoma, and blogs at  Abolish Human Abortion and Rhoblogy.

A quick Google search showed that he is an abortion protestor and has been named in the news. In that article he is shown protesting outside a high school. I’ve never heard of abortion protestors outside of high schools.  In this article, he is protesting at Satanic Exorcism Ritual at Oklahoma City’s Civic Center.

But it is his online dialogue, how he debates, and who he defends which disturb me the most.

It’s important to note that J.D. Hall has a group of friends, called #pulpiteers (taken from Hall’s Twitter name and blog name, @pulpitand pen and Pulpit and Pen, respectively) whom he refers to on his tweets.  I’ll explain.

Twitter 101

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For those new or unfamiliar with Twitter, let me explain a bit because it’s important to understand how this social media is being used by J.D. Hall and his group.

On Twitter, everybody has their own “handle.”  Mine is @DefendtheSheep. The @ sign identifies a Twitter user. There are also # – hashtags.

A while back, I organized a group and the social media guru in the group decided to use the hashtag #whowouldJesusSue (this was to bring social media attention to Alex Grenier’s lawsuit by his pastor and father, Bob Grenier of Calvary Chapel Visalia). People tweeting about this story included the hashtag #whowouldJesusSue. We’ve seen conferences identified by hashtags. Let’s say Southern Baptist Conference wants to coordinate a Twitter hashtag for an upcoming conference. They might announce #SBC2014 as the hashtag. The cool feature about hashtags is you can click on the hashtag because it is a hyperlink and see all other tweets that include the specific hashtag. When I clicked on  #whowouldJesusSue hashtag, I could see all of the tweets and people involved in helping this cause. I was able to find other like-minded individuals who were supportive of the cause and connect with them. It’s a very handy feature on Twitter.

So, J.D. Hall, has essentially created a group of his buddies that he refers to as #pulpiteers. He includes the hashtag in his tweets and when his friends tweet, they also include it. They can quickly click on the hashtag to see what their group is tweeting about.

Clicking on this #pulpiteers link, you will see all of the tweets that have the hashtag #pulpiteers. Right now, there is a loud response to J.D. Hall and the #pulpiteer’s behavior and so people who are upset at them are also using the hashtag.  If you scroll down, you will see what it used to be like with primarily JD Hall and his buddies using the hashtag.

#pulpiteers Gang Mentality

When you look at those who identify with the #pulpiteers hash tag, they are essentially saying, “I am one of them,” “I am choosing to wear the label,” and “I align myself with JD Hall and his message.”

I was thinking about this. Isn’t this what we see with teenage gangs who wear certain clothing, i.e., certain colored bandana, a certain kind of hat, etc?  I hate to say it, but it looks obvious to me that this group is functioning as a gang would. They wear their label proudly and behave just like a street gang, but instead of using real weapons, they use God and scripture as a weapon.

J.D. Hall is the gang leader and the #pulpiteers will fight to the figural death defending their hero leader or also one another. They use Christianese talk, quote Scripture, talk about love, but their behavior completely discounts everything they say. So many people are picking up on it and in fact, a UK blog site, the freethinker – which looks to be an atheist blog site, was the first to cover the story connecting J.D. Hall with the suicide of Braxton Caner, The suicide of a preacher’s kid.

The following Twitter conversation is a prime example of a pulpiteer defending another pulpiteer.  Dustin Germain is part of that group. He mans J.D. Hall’s website and is the one who made the choice to pull down the article J.D. Hall posted after the online dialogue. (In the post, Hall defended himself, and later added some sort of apology, but not really an apology as far as I’m concerned. The article can be found in Google’s cache.)  Anyway, here is an example of Dustin Germain aka @paperhymn coming to the defense of Alan Maricle aka @Rhology who is coming to the defense of J.D. Hall. His comment is at the bottom of the tweet thread.

 

 

These gangsters are deluded. They have made up their own religion where love means gang-like badgering and bullying and calling people to repent.  This is not the 1 Corinthians 13 love I see in the Bible. This is not kindness that brings people to repentance.

Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance? Romans 2:4

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Updated to add this image about #pulpiteers. Special thanks to Kay who provided the info:

Related link:  Michael Newnham of Phoenix Preacher, The Rise and Fall of J.D. Hall

 

 

 

265 comments on “Who is @Rhology? What are #pulpiteers? How Do They Function?

  1. Hester,

    Good comment, Hester. What I would like to do, however, is to get someone from the Calvin side of the debate to tell us WHY the Ergun Caner issue is extremely important to them.

    There must be a thousand if there is one pastor who has ever lied. Why THIS one? Why this ONE? WHY this one?

    Me, I have no problem with people speculating that JD Hall is a murderer. We did the same for the OJ Simpson trial. Everybody did. All walks of life did. People from every religion did. Everyone had an opinion as to whether OJ did it, or didn’t do it.

    So why is it wrong to do it with this situation? It’s not a sin to be in the court of public opinion.

    1 John 3:15
    Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.

    You don’t have to commit the act to be a murderer. He hates Ergun Caner. The Bible tells us what our behavior is if we love people.

    Ergun Caner MUST be extremely important to the Calvinists. Otherwise, they would leave him alone. He doesn’t want to be a Calvinist, and no one can force him to be a Calvinist. He wants nothing to do with Calvinism, so why do the Calvinists concentrate on Caner at all?

    Why won’t the Calvinists “dust their feet”?

    In MY mind, there is only two reasons why a 15 year old would commit suicide.
    1. JD Hall
    2. Girlfriend broke up with him.

    Ed

    Like

  2. @ Lydia:

    It might be hard to believe but they are not what you think.

    Oh, I absolutely believe that some in that crowd could engage in that kind of behavior (Driscoll and his fans especially). I also have no reason to disbelieve Lumpkins when he says that he’s been secretly recorded, hounded, etc. So yeah, I’m hardly a fan of Neo-Calvinism. It has a huge problem with authoritarianism, abuse and patriarchy / extreme comp. I was pleased to see Mark Driscoll finally get the official boot from Acts 29 the other day (though obviously that doesn’t mean the aforementioned problems are gone).

    I’m very sorry what happened to you and your kids. I actually think it’s possible (likely?) that the Twitter exchange contributed to whatever was going on in Braxton’s head; I didn’t mean to convey that it couldn’t have been a factor at all. I just think Todd Starnes came a little too close to backhandedly blaming the suicide completely on Hall, which I doubt is the case. We’ll never know the whole story of “why” because Braxton isn’t here to tell us.

    Targeting Braxton was wrong in the first place. I am sorry so many are playing it down because it is important to let “Christian leaders” know it is wrong and kids are off limits.

    Absolutely. And for John Carpenter to claim, with zero evidence, on Wade’s blog that Dee would attack a child in a heartbeat, immediately after complaining that Dee claims things without evidence, was amusing to say the least.

    Like

  3. @ chapmaned24:

    Me, I have no problem with people speculating that JD Hall is a murderer. We did the same for the OJ Simpson trial.

    Except with OJ Simpson we had the vicious and obvious homicide of his ex-wife. Here we have a Twitter exchange and a radio program, and then a suicide in another state a whole month later. Those aren’t anywhere close to the same situation. Saying Hall harassed or cyberbullied Braxton and could have contributed to the mental state that led to his suicide is one thing, but homicide wouldn’t stand up in a court of law for a second. In fact it would probably never even make it to trial.

    Like

  4. Brian,

    You had said:
    “In my faith tradition God longs for our death, He cant wait so that justice can be done. We all have it coming.”

    My response:
    What? In my faith tradition God longs for life, not our death. God is long suffering, meaning that he gives us MUCH TIME to come to our senses. He wills that all come to him. God is compassionate, full of mercy and grace. And, in regards to justice, justice was already served on Jesus Christ for everyone…UNLESS you reject THAT justice, THEN justice will be served on those who REJECT THAT justice.

    Ed

    Like

  5. Mornin’ Ed,
    I’ve never seen Tim Hawkins, but I’ve heard short clips on the radio. He makes very good points while being very funny. I don’t think I would care for the Bible in Hip Hop or Rap and am not real sure if they are the same of 2 different things. Now Reggae, maybe. That has a nice beat to it.

    I ordered the Strong’s Concordance last night, newest version available. I don’t agree with the way some folks view the KJV and I’ve seen Shakespeare done in a modern version–didn’t like it one bit. I like the thee’s and thou’s. I like the KJV best, but I was raised in a church where everyone used it and I do mean everyone. Any other version was taboo and only used privately in your own home if at all. I bought my mom and my kids an NIV a few years ago and they all thought I had gone mad. Maybe so, but I thought study should go beyond my comfort zone so that I could say yeah or nay out of my own understanding and not someone else’s. I also compare my 2 main Bibles with the Geneva and the ESV, just for grins and giggles. The Geneva gets a lot of those.

    I’ve learned a lot from this site and the people here, which proves you are never too old to learn.

    Brenda

    Like

  6. Hester,

    You had said:
    homicide wouldn’t stand up in a court of law for a second. In fact it would probably never even make it to trial.”

    My response:
    But it will stand at the great white throne. He who hates his brother is a murderer, and the bible tells us what hate looks like, and what love looks like.

    Carnal justice may not ever happen, but eternal justice will. You can be sure of it.

    However, I would LOVE for this to go to trial. I want all of the evidence on the table. But, your side denies that there is evidence. Today’s laws are new in regards to cyber stalking and harassing, due to the internet not being that old. Teenagers are committing suicide by the huge numbers due to being harassed online.

    It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure this one out, Hester. I want it to go to trial. Just saying that it wouldn’t hold up in court doesn’t matter to me. Let’s take it to court, and see.

    Ed

    Like

  7. Brenda,

    Cool. Ya, I have seen the blogs in regards to the KJV Onlyists. The KJV is hard to understand. The Onlyists should at least admit that. But I want to first hear it in my own “native tongue”, so to speak, hence NIVr.

    Your way of doing it pretty much matches mine.

    Oh, if you get a chance, just go over to youtube and query Tim Hawkins. There are tons of his comedic acts there. He’s very funny.

    Ed

    Like

  8. Hester,

    From Wiki http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyberstalking_legislation

    in the case of United States v. Lori Drew, in which Megan Meier had committed suicide after being bullied on MySpace, three of the four charges against the defendant (Drew) were actually in response to alleged violations of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, since specific statues against cyberbullying were not on the books. The jury eventually found Drew innocent of the charges (but guilty of a misdemeanor), a verdict that was later set aside by the judge. In this situation, legislators in Missouri, at the urging of the public and Meier’s parents, passed “Megan’s Law”,[9][10] primarily aimed at the crime of a person over 21 years of age bullying a person under 18 years of age.

    In addition, prosecutors will sometimes use other legal avenues to prosecute offenders. In the case of Tyler Clementi, who killed himself after video of his homosexual encounter was broadcast on the Internet, prosecutors charged the defendants with invasion of privacy and computer crimes. Like the Meier case, the Clementi case spurred legislators (this time, in New Jersey) to pass a law specifically aimed at bullying, an “Anti-bullying Bill of Rights”.[11]

    1. Texas Law:
    http://www.haltabuse.org/resources/laws/texas.shtml

    2. Montana Law:
    http://leg.mt.gov/bills/mca/45/8/45-8-213.htm
    http://leg.mt.gov/bills/mca/45/5/45-5-220.htm

    JD is in Montana, and Braxton was in Texas. JD is an adult, Braxton a minor.

    I think that the law is clear enough that there is criminal liability here. The evidence is electronic. No amount of deleting will sweep it under the carpet. Forensics can find anything deleted.

    Ed

    Like

  9. I’m with you, Ed. Never mind the fact that Hall requested Braxton contact him privately. Because (sarcasm alert) we all know that Pastors NEVER engage in inappropriate relationships with minors.

    Like

  10. I’ve read stuff from the other side that he didn’t mean to talk to Braxton. Um, no. If that was the case, he would not have included Braxton’s Twitter tag, he would have just said “Braxton.” Instead we see he intentionally tagged him. Tagging him means that Braxton would have received a notification that someone was wanting his attention. JD Hall knows Twitter. He knows Tagging. It is ridiculous to try to show otherwise.

    Like

  11. There is, of course, a place for calling out error. However, when these preachers-cum-bullies call out for the purposes of condemnation, manipulation, coercion, control and even vengeful destruction, they cannot legitimately claim to be pastors/shepherds. To appropriate a term that has just been coined by Barbara Roberts over at cryingoutforjustice.com (http://tinyurl.com/k4ouo7t), they have revealed themselves to be sssssheperds, as in the progeny of that serpent who is our adversary, the accuser of the saints.

    Sometimes, alas, I convict myself.

    Like

  12. Kay,

    MacArthur’s Commentary.
    ” the keys of the kingdom of heaven. These represent authority, and here Christ gives Peter (and by extension all other believers) authority to declare what was bound or loosed in heaven.”

    To me, we need to take this back to Matthew 16. And, the Catholics started this mess when they state that Peter is the rock. Unfortunately, even some protestants believe that as well, hence, to them, Peter is some sort of Christian guru.

    Well, for the rest of us, we see the “rock” as that of being Peter’s “declaration” that Jesus is the Christ. Anyone that believes THAT declaration has the SAME keys as Peter does.

    Keys unlock a door. That tells me that we “enter in” the Kingdom with them thar keys.

    Verse 19
    19 And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

    Some tend to think that Peter is the only one with them keys. I guess Home Depot didn’t exist back in them days, huh?

    The topic of bind and loose is a different subject within the same verse.

    One of the most interesting things that I have learned is that to get a complete picture of the gospels, we need to “zipper” all of the gospels together. These are witnesses, and these are their story of what happened. For example,

    Matthew 16:16-20 (Note verse 20 as a reference)
    16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.

    17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.

    18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

    19 And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

    20 Then charged he his disciples that they should tell no man that he was Jesus the Christ.

    ————————

    Mark 8:29-30
    29 And he saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Peter answereth and saith unto him, Thou art the Christ.

    30 And he charged them that they should tell no man of him.

    ———————–

    Note: Do you see how much information was left out in Mark? The words of Matthew 16:17-19 was left out, and so is Luke’s reference below.

    ———————

    Luke 9:
    20 He said unto them, But whom say ye that I am? Peter answering said, The Christ of God.

    21 And he straitly charged them, and commanded them to tell no man that thing;

    ————————

    So, we have two topics in Matthew that Mark and Luke do not discuss:
    1. Keys
    2. Bind and Loose

    Keys to Kingdom

    There are only 2 references to keys in the whole bible. The other is in Revelation that Jesus has the keys to death and hell.

    The first is the keys to the kingdom, which, if opposite, of death and hell, is life and heaven.

    I believe that anyone who declares Jesus as the Christ has those keys. To me, those keys do not represent “authority”, and I do not believe that it has anything to do with forgiving sin, aka bind and loose. To me, it means that we “enter in”, as individuals by way of those keys, and each and every Christian has those keys.

    Bind and Loose:

    There is only 2 references to Bind and Loose. Matthew 16 and Matthew 18.

    My explanation of that I already discussed, forgiving (loose), or not forgiving (bind) sin that was committed against you personally. It is not to be used “corporately”, or as a church body, etc. Personal only. Catholic priests cannot forgive sins, except if that sin was against them personally.

    The book of John does not discuss these topics at all.

    Ed

    Like

  13. Ed,

    Great example of in depth study. This is our understanding as well. I love your advice earlier “you and your Bible” and the practice of using Scripture to define Scripture is great.

    We recently had a discussion with a TMS grad and my husband mentioned these passages and it was like auto pilot response – “That’s about authority.” We were very encouraged by his response after the discussion, not that we changed his mind, but that he was open to more serious study. It was like a light bulb turned on and he saw there were problems with what he had been taught.

    We’ve also encountered especially immature pastors who are peacock proud because as a pastor they are in the unbroken chain of 2 Tim 2:2. At graduation they were handed the baton of authority and what a destructive path some of them take. It’s an amazing thing to see.

    Matthew 18, (ignoring the forgiveness section that follows) comes flying out of mouths and “elder” injected in passages where there is no such mention in Scripture. What a mess!

    Like

  14. @ Ed:

    But, your side denies that there is evidence.

    My “side”? I explicitly stated upthread that I am no fan of Neo-Calvinism, and that cyberbullying was not off the table. I’m just not convinced that cyberbullying necessarily adds up to premeditated murder. As for the court cases you quoted, notice that in none of them were the cyberbullies convicted of homicide. They were convicted of computer and privacy crimes. Those aren’t the same thing. Now if you want to argue that they should have been convicted of murder, go right ahead, but the fact remains that legally the charge didn’t fly – and that was for much more extreme and long-term situations than Braxton’s. Legalities do matter if we’re going to throw around words like “murder.”

    I actually do think that the Twitter exchange / radio show probably contributed to whatever headspace Braxton was in that led him to take his own life. What the rest of it may have been, I don’t know, nobody knows and we’ll probably never know unless Braxton revealed it himself in a note and the family chooses to say later (and they’re under no obligation to do so). At the very least Hall’s actions probably didn’t help. If they did contribute, then yes, he will be held accountable by God for his part in the tragedy. But trying to prove intent and premeditation to kill Braxton (which is what you would need for murder)? That can’t be done. At most you’d get accidental manslaughter.

    Just because I don’t think Hall committed homicide, doesn’t mean I think he’s a perfect angelic cherub or that the initial Twitter exchange / radio show were a good thing. I explicitly stated upthread that Hall’s actions were wrong and inappropriate. Pigeonholing everyone into binary “sides” is part of what’s wrong with the internet-wide discourse on this incident. Are our only choices really “Hall was right to go after Braxton” and “Hall committed homicide”?

    Like

  15. @ Julie Anne:

    JD Hall knows Twitter. He knows Tagging. It is ridiculous to try to show otherwise.

    Yeah, that’s a silly argument. Coupled with the radio show it’s especially so. Of course he intended to interact with Braxton.

    Like

  16. Kay,

    It’s cool to compare notes like this. It’s funny that the young newly seminary graduated, educated pastors seem to find things in scripture that just isn’t there. Still wet behind the ears, and boom…Elder so and so, Pastor so and so, that has absolutely no clue. They are just relaying what someone taught them. Sometimes it’s just funny at how ignorant that they are, but at other times, it is pretty pathetic.

    Ed

    Like

  17. Hester,

    I say “your side” for a reason. Your side states that it is a sad situation that Braxton committed suicide. But your side is so afraid of admitting the obvious. Yes, your side.

    With all due respect, Hester, I think that you are pretty ignorant.

    If I were you, I would do more research in regards to children being cyber-bullied that wound up committing suicide, and couple that with the statutes of law for each state.

    SOMEONE is responsible for those suicides, and the law states that the one who cyberbullied is responsible. Yes, your side doesn’t seem to see, or should I say, refuses to see the obvious. The laws are holding people responsible for the deaths of teens who commit suicide based on cyber bullying. I can’t seem to get people like you who don’t see a connection between Braxton’s suicide and JD Hall’s cyber bullying. It’s mind boggling.

    Why can’t you acknowledge that? Calvinism always talks out of both sides of their mouths. They refuse to take responsibility for their own unlawful actions.

    But again, and I have absolutely no idea how you keep missing this most important aspect of this. The Bible.

    That Bible states He Who Hates His Brother Is A Murderer. And That Bible states what love is, and what hate is. JD Hates people. JD Hates many people. Based on That Bible, JD has murdered many people.

    The Great White Throne Awaits, buddy!!

    Ed

    Like

  18. Hester,

    You said:
    “Yeah, that’s a silly argument. Coupled with the radio show it’s especially so. Of course he intended to interact with Braxton.”

    I’d love for the prosecuting attorney to use that argument, too. It ain’t so silly to a prosecutor.

    Ed

    Like

  19. @ Ed:

    I allowed that there could be a connection between Hall’s interactions with Braxton and Braxton’s suicide. I also said that I thought there probably was. Since I’ve explicitly stated this twice now, stop saying I haven’t allowed for it.

    Also, since I’m not Calvinist (as I also explicitly stated upthread), I’m not sure what Calvinists talking out both sides of their mouths has to do with me.

    So since I’m ignorant, please enlighten me why the cyberbullies in the cases you mentioned were charged with computer and privacy crimes and not homicide, even though there were obvious strong connections (arguably stronger than the one between Hall and Braxton) between their cyberbullying and the suicides that followed? None of the laws you linked to mentioned anything about homicide or suicide.

    As for the Bible, of course it says he who hates his brother is a murderer. But I’m talking about the US legal code. The US legal code doesn’t prosecute people for murder because they’re engaging in hatred. If it did, a huge percentage of the population would be in jail. In other words, legal codes are never a perfect reflection of morality, but that doesn’t mean they’re unimportant.

    Claiming someone committed a (legal) crime they didn’t commit is serious business. A (legal) charge of cyberbullying against J. D. Hall might be tenable. A (legal) charge of murder would not. If you meant murder as in hating your brother, that may be okay Biblically, but when most people read the word “murder,” unless you qualified exactly what you meant, that’s not what they think of. Their brains will jump to the legal concept of premeditated murder and that’s what they will think you are accusing Hall of. Maybe you’re okay with that. I wouldn’t be, because it would be a legal falsehood.

    I also wouldn’t be walking around loudly proclaiming that someone is a murderer due to hatred as if this were something unique to J. D. Hall. Basically everyone hates someone else at some point. But nobody starts demanding heads roll for regular everyday hatred. In other words, if Braxton had never committed suicide, nobody ever would have called J. D. Hall a murderer even if he had trolled Braxton’s Twitter feed every day.

    In any case, here’s what Dee said:

    Any commenter accusing anyone of murder is out of line. This stops now. Any further comments along these lines will not only be deleted but anyone who pushes it will be permanently banned from this blog.

    I don’t know if the comments in question meant “regular murder” or hating your brother, but Dee didn’t appear to care. Probably because she knows there can be legal fallout from accusing someone of murder without legal grounds. I agree with her.

    Wikipedia articles on murder, manslaughter and malice aforethought for legal definitions:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manslaughter
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malice_aforethought

    Like

  20. @ Ed:

    I’d love for the prosecuting attorney to use that argument, too. It ain’t so silly to a prosecutor.

    Please explain what you were implying here.

    Like

  21. Ed,

    That Bible states He Who Hates His Brother Is A Murderer. And That Bible states what love is, and what hate is. JD Hates people. JD Hates many people. Based on That Bible, JD has murdered many people.

    You know how I feel about Hall’s interaction with Braxton and how inappropriate the tweets were. I want to be careful about the use of the word hate/murder because then aren’t we doing the same thing: judging the hearts of man? Where is that magical line where it crosses from strongly disliking someone to hating someone? Not you nor I have been given the ability to see in someone’s heart. I think it’s appropriate to question behavior, speak strongly about what we see as bad behavior, but I get very uneasy about the judging hearts part.

    Like

  22. “Are our only choices really “Hall was right to go after Braxton” and “Hall committed homicide”?”

    I personally think those choices are silly. To me, the choices are: Hall’s ministry of calling out (which lead to targeting Braxton) represents Christianity Or, It does not.

    That to me is a “voice of reason” question.

    One side is saying it did not help and was inappropriate and even creepy what Hall did. The other side is saying it had nothing to do with any of it.

    We simply do not know one way or the other but we should err on the side of it obviously added to whatever hell he was living in at the time. Do folks really think a 15 year old blew off such a thing from an adult pastor and his friends accusing him of immorality and it being his dads fault then offering to tell him the truth about his dad? This is sick stuff that movement is blowing off with a vague apology sandwiched in with why it is ok to call them out over and over and over. Braxton was right. They ARE obsessed with his dad.

    These are not things Hall and his followers (Even Wade) seem to want to admit. And it is a wake up call for the SBC and Christianity in general. What on earth are we supporting out there?

    Like

  23. Hester, one more clarification. I was very outspoke on Caner when that info came out and he was at Liberty. But within a year I saw a very dark side to that whole movement against him which made me ill. There was much more to it than what meets the eye. That does not exonerate Caner. But it sure made me not want to be a part of it either.

    Like

  24. Hester,

    Obviously you didn’t read all of the words. The internet was quite new. At that time there was no legit laws on the books to prosecute. NOW there are. That is what the article stated. Public outcry changed the laws.

    I asked that you do research. That means to read more than what I provided. Please do that. You are minimizing this.

    You may not be a Calvinist, but you are on their side of the argument. Hence, your side. You are not on our side, that’s for sure.

    Ed

    Like

  25. JA,
    “Not you nor I have been given the ability to see in someone’s heart. ”

    I hear ya…I do…but…actions show the heart. Otherwise, how can we perceive if someone hates us? If someone hates me, they don’t have to tell me. I will see it.

    Matthew 15:18-19
    But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies:

    Matthew 12:35
    A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things.

    But, I will refrain myself.

    Ed

    Like

  26. Hester,

    You said:

    “I’d love for the prosecuting attorney to use that argument, too. It ain’t so silly to a prosecutor.

    Please explain what you were implying here.”

    My response:
    You said that it was a silly argument. Well, prosecutors would not see it as a silly argument.

    In court, lawyers make an argument. I really thought that my comment was self explanatory.

    Ed

    Like

  27. Hester,

    You said:
    “Claiming someone committed a (legal) crime they didn’t commit is serious business. ”

    Why? OJ Simpson was acquitted. But that doesn’t mean that he didn’t do it.

    Those who accuse people, regardless of the outcome, never go on trial…unless there was obstruction of justice, meaning that the person KNOWINGLY lied.

    So how is it serious business?

    Ed

    Like

  28. “And for John Carpenter to claim, with zero evidence, on Wade’s blog that Dee would attack a child in a heartbeat, immediately after complaining that Dee claims things without evidence, was amusing to say the least.”

    Carpenter has a reputation much like Hall’s. Mean and vindictive.

    And he is accusing TWW of horrors while praising Wade to the sky. Strangeness all around.

    Like

  29. “I am on record as being very much against what Wade has taught concerning victims of abuse and their abusers.”

    I am the same; his teaching helped push me into the darkest despair of my life. A sledgehammer to my mind and heart, that I will need therapy to hopefully recover from.

    Like

  30. Oasis,
    I am so, so sorry for the pain you feel.
    I also have some grave concerns after reading Wade’s last post. And I believe that anyone concerned for the safety of minors in our churches should be as well. The exchange between Hall and Braxton raised so many red flags. One of the classic examples of predatory grooming behavior is for a predator to seek a “private” or “secret” relationship with a victim out of parental oversight.
    We’ve all read about how conniving predators can be. Hindsight is 20/20. I’m afraid millstones may become the latest Christian statement necklace.

    Like

  31. @ Ed:

    Obviously you didn’t read all of the words</blockquote

    I did. Plus some other articles linked off of that one. But I'm mostly concerned with the statutes you linked to, which you said were the relevant cyberbullying laws for TX and MT. Presumably those are the standards we would be going by since those were the states involved. They went into a lot of detail defining cyberbullying, but neither of them mentioned suicide or homicide, let alone who is legally culpable for those if they occur. Are you saying the laws you yourself linked to are out of date?

    I'm not denying that cyberbullying can contribute to suicides (that's obvious), only that the cyberbullying statutes aren't designed to determine who's legally culpable for a suicide, let alone what is and is not homicide. In other words, you can't be convicted of murder under a cyberbullying statute. You can be convicted of cyberbullying under a cyberbullying statute. So I’m honestly not clear on how those statutes are relevant to the charge of murder, given that they don’t even address it.

    Making accusations toward someone of something they didn’t do can qualify as slander / defamation in some cases. I asked Dee once about the legal definition of slander / defamation, and she was told by a lawyer that you cannot say anything you know to be false. Since it’s obvious from the legal definition of murder that Hall did not commit that (legal) crime (see the links I posted), I cannot walk around claiming that he did because I know that to be legally false. It would a) be putting a target on my back legally as a blogger and b) go against my conscience. That being said, I doubt Hall will actually sue anybody, but Dee was still correct to remove those comments. (And no, my conscience will not allow me to call Hall’s interaction with Braxton good or acceptable either, because it was obviously creepy and inappropriate.)

    Per minimization, I repeat what I said earlier: are my only two choices really “Hall was right” and “Hall is a murderer”? I agree with Lydia upthread. Those are silly choices and a false dichotomy. If everything short of “Hall committed homicide” is minimization, then Dee / TWW is minimizing too, and so are JA, Todd Starnes, and almost everyone else who has commented on this case. You’re being inconsistent by only calling me out on this when Dee was the first one to say accusations of murder were unacceptable. According to your own logic, that puts her on “Hall’s side” too.

    If you do not drop the “sides” language, this conversation will end. You are telling me what I supposedly “really” believe (even though I’ve explained to you multiple times that I don’t believe it), categorizing me based on that assessment, and then making a moral judgment about me based on that categorization. And if that’s how you’re going to operate, then I will be leaving this thread.

    Like

  32. Hester,

    Well, I promised to refrain. “I” think that he is guilty of what I am not supposed to talk about. That is my personal opinion. And, I don’t think that it is wrong to accuse him.

    What I was really talking about was that he is responsible, in some capacity, of the death, and I don’t care what you call it, be it homicide, or what I am refraining from. No matter what YOU or I, or the LAW calls it, he is culpable. And, by the laws that ARE on the books, he should be tried, and convicted. I call it what I am refraining from.

    According to the http://www.dallaspolice.net/content/11/66/uploads/dpd_cyber-bullying.pdf (TEXAS)

    it is a FELONY in some cases, or MISD. in other cases. In either case, if the family wants to pursue this, they have a case. Hall can be prosecuted. Hall can be accused of breaking the law.

    Slander/Defamation? Hardly. I have the freedom to speak my mind. Or haven’t you heard, pastors loose defamation cases. I’m not buying the free advice from that attorney. That doesn’t scare me in the least. I will not be silenced by the thought police, not now, not ever. This is the kitchen table.

    Ed

    Like

  33. Hester,

    You had said:
    “(And no, my conscience will not allow me to call Hall’s interaction with Braxton good or acceptable either, because it was obviously creepy and inappropriate.)”

    My response:

    That doesn’t go far enough. He broke the law. Just saying creepy and inappropriate minimizes this whole thing. He broke the law.

    Your minimizing by just saying that it is creepy and inappropriate is exactly why I say “your side”. You refuse to acknowledge that he broke the law. You are too afraid to say it. Why? Because you are afraid of a defamation lawsuit? I think that is funny.

    YOUR SIDE minimizes it all. And I am not afraid to say “your side”, either.

    Ed

    Like

  34. That doesn’t go far enough. He broke the law. Just saying creepy and inappropriate minimizes this whole thing. He broke the law.

    We can’t say he broke the law until there is a conviction.

    Like

  35. JA,

    If that be the case, then no one would be “detained” in jails. People detained are accused of breaking the law. They wouldn’t be there for doing something creepy or inappropriate.

    Ed

    Like

  36. Ed,

    You were stating it as a fact – can’t do that here. Linda Williams isn’t in WA to help me with another defamation lawsuit.

    Accused does not mean conviction. Of course in this case, it must be reported and then our govt officials determine whether there is just cause for arrest. You and I aren’t in a position to determine that.

    Like

  37. JA,

    I’m feeling a bit censored here. I have to respectfully disagree that we cannot say that he broke the law. You are right, accused does not mean conviction. I never said conviction. I am accusing. I never heard that it is against the law to accuse.

    What does the word “reported” indicate? Accuse, right? The court of public opinion is free. Why are we being oh so sensitive of accusing JD Hall of a crime?

    I’m sorry, but creepy and inappropriate just does not go far enough. I’ve never thought that I would really see the day that we can’t say what we truly believe, because what it then boils down to is that we, then, are afraid of JD Hall. And that is what he wants, too, that we be afraid of him.

    Ed

    Like

  38. Thanks for the link, Ed. JD still sounds like JD. He has managed to make himself out to the real victim, now.

    I used to get a kick out him always rebuking people for “judging” him while he was rebuking and judging someone else. He never seemed to be able to connect the dots.

    Like

  39. That doesn’t go far enough. He broke the law. Just saying creepy and inappropriate minimizes this whole thing. He broke the law.

    This is the part that is troublesome. We are not the ones who get to determine that. It is lawmakers who determine if he broke the law. I sure saw inappropriate behavior on Twitter, but there were not that many tweets between the 2 of them. He crossed the line of moral judgment, yes. He was a fool to engage a minor, yes. He was certainly not acting like a shepherd. His behavior over the years against Caner has been ridiculous. It takes lawyers and judges to look at the legal definition to determine if there is a case and if it could go to trial/conviction. Ok, so there’s that issue. The other issue is what I alluded to earlier. I don’t want people saying things as fact because I don’t need another lawsuit. If you cloak your words with “I believe,” “it is my opinion,” then I won’t be whining.

    Like

  40. “If you cloak your words with “I believe,” “it is my opinion,” then I won’t be whining.”

    Yep, that is the safest route.

    Like

  41. JA,

    OK. I believe that he broke the law. Now, why are others afraid to say even that?

    I still don’t like the fact that we have to veil, or cloak words.

    Say for example that someone raped you. Are you to say, “I believe that he raped me.” Or do you say, “He raped me.” Or, do you say that he was inappropriate against you?

    Even when there must be a “determination” by a judge on whether it will go to trial or not, a person is still “detained in jail”, then he goes in front of the judge with his attorney, and the prosecuting attorney, then the judge, in front of the accused, tells the accused that there is merit for the case, or not. But still, he was accused before the judge made the determination.

    Hey…I watch Perry Mason!!! LOL! Just kidding on that. But I am serious on the above.

    Ed

    Like

  42. There is a difference between legal and moral. Christian morality in a pluralistic society is yet another thing, and there are many interpretations of what Christian morality means — obviously.

    And the topics and issues involved are all loaded ones.

    We’ve got to work on sorting those out — as individuals and as a group of Christians.

    Like

  43. I believe he acted like a bully, Ed. I am just unfamiliar with the law to know if he broke the law. If I understood cyberbullying laws and felt that he fit the parameters, I wouldn’t have a problem saying it. You know me. I called my pastor a spiritual abuser, a creep, and all kinds of things, which is what got me here 🙂

    How can you be so sure he broke the law, Ed? Have you looked at the state law on cyber bullying? Go ahead and post it here so we can discuss it.

    And you can e-mail me whatever you want and tell me how you really feel, in a private setting. Let me have it! The ballgame is different in a public forum.

    Like

  44. Mark,

    In my opinion, Mark, yes, good. Now he will see what it is like. People are always saying that “no one understands unless you’ve been thru it yourself”, right? Well, he is going through it, and now he gets a chance to understand. Good.

    Ed

    Like

  45. Ok, I found it:

    Texas Penal Code Sec. 33.07. Online Harassment

    (a) A person commits an offense if the person uses the name or persona of
    another person to create a web page on or to post one or more messages on a commercial social networking site:

    (1) without obtaining the other person’s consent; and

    (2) with the intent to harm, defraud, intimidate, or threaten any person.

    (b) A person commits an offense if the person sends an electronic mail, instant message, text message, or similar communication that references a name,
    domain address, phone number, or other item of identifying information belonging to any person:

    (1) without obtaining the other person’s consent;

    (2) with the intent to cause a recipient of the communication to reasonably
    believe that the other person authorized or transmitted the communication; and

    (3) with the intent to harm or defraud any person.

    (c) An offense under Subsection (a) is a felony of the third degree.

    An offense under Subsection (b) is a Class A misdemeanor, except that the offense is a felony of the third degree if the actor commits the offense with the intent to solicit a response by emergency personnel.

    http://www.dallaspolice.net/content/11/66/uploads/dpd_cyber-bullying.pdf

    Reading this legal definition, do you think he broke the law?

    Like

  46. JA,

    Your key word, “think”, as in, Yes, I think, or believe that he broke the law. But as you rightly note, only a judge can determine that. But based on what I read, yes, that is what I believe.

    Ed

    Like

  47. This bunch has had some twitter trouble before with all the fake accounts they have created. Here is a post that would fit 2(b) of the online harassment code and is probably why his account was shut down by Twitter. (Lumpy Peter was an account created to jab at Peter Lumpkins and it appears it is a pulpiteer creation given all the people it interacts with.)

    Lumpy Peter ‏@GeorgiaHoot Feb 14
    @PastorJChester This time they’re claiming harassment because I included their email addresses which are publicly listed on their website.

    No problem – they just create a new account:

    Traditional Fool @DoubleGAHoot · 2h
    Tomorrow a supposed man of God will stand in a pulpit in Knoxville and claim to stand for the Truth after making outrageous lies all weekend

    Like

  48. @ Ed:

    I’m not saying it’s impossible that he broke the cyberbullying laws. I’m saying it’s impossible that he committed the legal crime of murder. I have explained this to you multiple times on this thread and yet you insist on conflating those two things (cyberbullying and murder). I’m not saying this because I’m afraid of a lawsuit, I’m saying this for the sake of honesty and legal clarity. J. D. Hall did NOT murder Braxton Caner in any legal sense of the word and a charge of murder WILL NOT stand in court. A charge of cyberbullying? You might have a shot at that. But like JA said, you will have to wait and see what the court says.

    And as you can see by the exchange you’re now having with JA, you may not think defamation is a big deal, but it is for bloggers. Like I said, legalities are important.

    This will be my last reply to you. Please do not interact with me further about this. Goodbye.

    Like

  49. I agree with Hester there is no legal definition of murder here and it is not wise to say such. I can understand someone making the point that Jesus said hating someone is the same as murder in your heart. But that is to convict ourselves. Not each other.

    However, JD Hall and company maintain their methods of rebuking and harassing are actually “love” in calling out what they decide is sin.

    The cyberbullying is another thing altogether. The age difference is a huge factor and not the first time they have targeted someone underage from what I gather as other incidents are spoken about. I was aware of all the fake accounts and the drive bys linking to those accounts. But, I cannot for the life of me figure out how Wade can declare it was not bullying.

    Like

  50. Hester,

    This is a respectful reply, Hester.

    If you look at my very first comment to you, you will notice that my “opinion” was NOT based on criminal carnal law, but sinful spiritual law.

    But somehow we, both you and I, somehow got caught up in criminal carnal law. I never meant to imply the word murder to criminal carnal law, but apparently that is where it went. I only meant to imply that I “think” that he is culpable, in some sort of capacity.

    And, you now seem to acknowledge, finally, that maybe, just maybe, he might have broken a criminal carnal law of some sort, i.e. cyberbully. But you refused to acknowledge that earlier on. You only said that it was creepy, etc. Being creepy isn’t against the law.

    Respectfully,

    Ed

    Like

  51. Hester,

    You indicated to not being a Calvinist. Reformed or Puritans or something else of something I’ve not mentioned are avoiding the Neo-Calvinist label, typically however they all embrace some or all TULIP and the Doctrine and Methodology is very similar.

    You are being cryptic

    Like

  52. Hester is not being cryptic. I think she’s trying to stay focused on the conversation at hand — a conversation that has evoked VERY strong emotions and opinions.

    I have to admit, agnosticism looks much more peaceful right now.

    Like

  53. Mark,

    I am tempted to concede that the T in TULIP is correct, though only as applied to those who subscribe to the doctrine of T. On reflection, however, I am satisfied that many or even most 5 pointers may be counted as amongst members of the Body of Christ, however misguided I may think them in their theology. If even 5 pointers may be so incorporated into the Body, then not even the doctrine of T can be to any extent correct, since being truly T (as defined by TULIP) logically excludes any possibility of being redeemed.

    As to whether Hester does or does not subscribe to any or all points of the TULIP pentagram, I agree that the question is irrelevant to the discussions in which she is engaged. Not that I think the questions you raise about TULIP are unimportant in other contexts.

    Like

  54. Gary,

    For years the local Presbyterian seminary was one of my clients. They subscribe to TULIP officially but you would never know it. They went the social justice route instead of the “doctrine over people” route and were great people to deal with.

    From my study (and this is just my opinion) the current Neo Cal movement is more like Calvin’s Geneva in method than what passed for Calvinism after the Puritans. I think that is what scares people the most. The authoritarianism. The pastor as your Holy Spirit, church membership covenants, redemption groups, etc, etc.

    It is like pew sitters are slowly giving up their freedoms and rights to think for themselves. It is scary.

    Like

  55. Hester mentioned the difference in moderating between TWW and SSB at Wartburg Watch site and I thought it would be good to copy my comment to her here. I hope some will find it helpful and explain why/how I moderate the way I do:

    Hester wrote:

    I had an extended, serious argument yesterday with someone at another blog about whether Hall murdered Braxton. Some people are taking this way too far. I am SO GLAD Dee took the measures she did in this instance.

    Hester,

    Moderating is a tough job. Sometimes it’s just not fun. A couple of things to consider when comparing TWW and SSB.

    1) Dee rocks at moderating. She’s taught me a lot.

    2) This current article went viral and likely has brought many new people to TWW, some unfamiliar with the way things roll here. Dee was inundated with well over 500 comments on the first day. It was important for her to lay the ground rules.

    3) My article discussing Hall was not a big one – it was mainly a post to keep people abreast of what was going on, and it was mostly the regulars commenting, except for a few from the #pulpiteer group.

    4) I greatly value freedom of expression. I’m careful about what I allow and don’t allow and I think about my lawsuit quite a bit when determining whether comments remain or not.

    5) If you think back on the thread, there were 2 issues going on: one was Ed discussing “hate in your heart = murder” in connection with Hall’s behavior, the other was on the legal aspect of cyber bullying. I dealt with each issue differently based on my legal experience.

    6) In the first hate = murder issue, Ed was looking at Hall’s behavior and judging his behavior to be hateful and then using Jesus’ words about someone who has hatred in his heart is like a murderer. I haven’t gone back, but I don’t think I told Ed to cool it down on that topic even though it is very strong wording.

    Ed was challenging us to think of how Jesus would respond to Hall’s behavior which he judged to be hateful. He’s coming from the spiritual side of things, not the legal side of “murder.”

    6) I did, however, jump into the conversation when it was said as a matter of fact that Hall’s behavior was cyber bullying. I challenged him on that and said that he couldn’t legitimately say that because he is not one who gets to interpret law.

    Ok, so why did I not come down on the “murderer” part even though those words were stronger? Because he was discussing specific scripture. I know from my lawsuit that discussions about interpreting scripture, spirituality, religious practices are all part of the religious autonomy rule and the courts won’t touch it. Now someone could hand pick a phrase from Ed’s comment and file a defamation lawsuit (as my pastor did), but any decent attorney (my pastor did not have a decent attorney) would look at the context and it is clear that he was discussing the issue based on a Biblical passage. The courts will not touch Biblical interpretation and settle spiritual disputes.

    However, when he was talking about Hall being a cyber bullying, it crossed over into civil law, not spiritual law. That’s why I told him to drop it a few notches (and he did).

    So, it may have appeared that I was not holding a tight ship, however, I was allowing discussion based on my personal experience of being in a defamation lawsuit and knowing what courts are looking at and will throw out.

    This was part of my lawsuit and might help when looking at how the court looks at lawsuits involving religious disputes:

    While it is true that Pastor is a member of the clergy and that is his “profession,” he cannot sue lay persons for remarks he finds offensive about his pastoral techniques or teachings which intrude on religious beliefs of the speaker. Clergy cannot sue attendees or congregants for spiritual disagreements or critiques relating to performance of clerical/pastoral duties. Such matters are within the church autonomy doctrine.

    Subjecting lay members liable for freely speaking about their confessor/counselor would interfere with their protected rights of religious conviction. No matter how offensive or heated the religious dispute or subjective the criticism of the pastoral conduct.

    MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF
    SPECIAL MOTIONS TO STRIKE
    FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT
    SUPPLEMENTAL TO THE SMITH
    DEFENDANTS’ MEMORANDUM IN
    SUPPORT OF THE SPECIAL
    MOTIONS TO STRIKE (ORIGINAL)
    COMPLAINT

    http://www.dmlp.org/sites/citmedialaw.org/files/2012-05-01-Smith%20Memo%20in%20Support%20of%20Special%20Motions%20to%20Strike%20regarding%20Amended%20Complaint.pdf

    Like

  56. Anyone can sue anyone for anything if they can find a lawyer to pursue the matter, and it seems that judges are hearing most of everything these days. What is moral isn’t the same as what is legal. It’s actually very courageous of Julie Anne to allow some of these discussions, considering what she’s been through.

    When I started blogging, there was an active legal charge that had been filed against someone. My husband and I approached the matter as though we could be sued if we discussed similar matters online and whether I should use my name or not. I consider whether I’m willing to go to court on a matter whenever I post anything. This is a consideration that one must have for a blog host when posting anything potentially libelous on someone else’s venue. And even soliciting the owner’s permission can become a painful matter. You can easily become the personal scapegoat should trouble arise, making you wish you’d documented/recorded every exchange you’d had with the owner of the venue.

    We live in a world that is always changing, and you can sue anybody for anything. I’m of the opinion that any other perspective is reckless.

    Like

  57. That’s just it, Cindy. My pastor’s attorney was stupid for taking the lawsuit, but guess what, I’m sure that attorney still got paid even though he lost the case.

    So you’re right, I do open myself up for risk and I try to minimize it based on the knowledge I got from my case.

    I don’t know if I’ve ever said this before, but there were attorneys who told me that my pastor’s attorney could have gotten in some sort of trouble in “attorneyland” for taking his defamation case since the evidence was so clearly lacking.

    Like

  58. Julie Anne,

    Thank you for that post. I was indeed trying to focus on the spiritual aspect, until I brought in the cyber bully stuff.

    As you may remember, in the beginning, I was unsure at what great input that I could contribute to your blog, seeing how that I have never been spiritually abused.

    I’ve been put in my place before. I don’t mind. I can take it. I submit!!! (Oh, did I say that?)

    The only thing that I could come up with was to present scripture. That scripture is to uplift, to edify the church, and the abused. Not to brow beat, or condemn them. But we do have knowledge of what is good and evil. There is only two sides. Good. Or Evil.

    Spiritual is always greater than the carnal. But we live in a carnal world. The carnal is yet temporary. I focus on what is eternal.

    Did JD Hall do what is good? I only want people to think. To think spiritual. To think good. To focus on what is above. There is where your treasure is.

    In no way do I wish to test the reality of a defamation lawsuit.

    God Bless!

    Ed Chapman

    Like

  59. Ed,

    If you were a flyby, you’d have been banned 🙂

    But I get where you are coming from and understand your zeal. It doesn’t hurt that we had pizza and beer together and great conversation a while back – haha.

    Your heart is in the right place in trying to protect/defend the abused. thanks!

    Like

  60. Ed,

    The end result of abuse may very well be justice and retribution. But to the abused the scar and pain vs. justice and retribution may not always remedy the damage already done.

    On numerous occasions I have challenged JD’s, Pulpiteers and John Carpenter’s toxic Methodology, even so much as refer them to the Holy Spirit for guidance rather than rely on their repetitive heavy-handed predatory tactics..

    Even if JD receives what he dished out it won’t change the loss or pain people are feeling that was caused by him his Pulpiteers or John Carpenter.

    There is nothing good about JD receiving what he dished out, because it won’t replace Braxton.

    Like

  61. No problem, Mark. I forgive you. This stuff is so emotional and intense. You all would laugh at me if you saw how I attempt to comment to someone and replace the comment even 5 times before settling on something that is appropriate to post. Sometimes I have to walk just shut it down and come back after I’ve calmed down.

    Like

  62. Gary,
    Thanks for your thoughts.

    Abuse happens differently and in my case it was by someone who denied being a Calvinist while embracing all 5 Points of TULIP.

    Unfortunately, I tend to jump into the middle of things when the slightest hint of Calvinism is brought up, even in an off-topic situation..

    In my case if someone who denies being a Calvinist, but won’t admit to embracing TULIP they aren’t necessarily being straight up, which is their right.

    Like

  63. Mark,

    Is toxic good, or evil? Is predatory good, or evil? Is justice good, or evil?

    Does God believe in carnal justice? If so, what kind of justice? I agree, no amount of justice will bring the dead back to life, but does that negate out justice? I agree, do not pay back evil for evil. That is, if you agree that what JD Hall did was evil.

    Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

    JD Hall has done unto others.

    God gives warning, Judge not lest ye be judged.

    Matthew 7:2 (NIVr)
    You will be judged in the same way you judge others. You will be measured in the same way you measure others.

    He brought this upon himself. Now he is finding out that he needs protection, police protection. Why? This is his own doing.

    Ed

    Like

  64. “He brought this upon himself. Now he is finding out that he needs protection, police protection. Why? This is his own doing.”

    I would hold off on that one. After watching their methods and tactics over the last few years and knowing they tend to lean toward the “Rahab lies” are for the Glory of God in their quest to “downgrade” evil sinners, I not buying yet. They are known for their fake accounts and planting information to influence opinions. it can take a while to figure it out though. they are good at it the social media game. JD has shown no serious sorrow, communicated a grudging agreement to leave Caner alone and has made himself out to be the real victim in the last CP article.

    Like

  65. Mark, I think no consequences only embolden more abuse and bullying from not only him but other quarters in Christendom. Caner lost his big job but it still was not enough for them. He had to be ruined. Ironically, they have not had the same problem with Mahaney or Driscoll over the last few years.

    Like

  66. “I have to admit, agnosticism looks much more peaceful right now.”

    Sure does. I sometimes pretend to myself to be an agnostic, or an atheist (while maintaining my relationship with Jesus, which makes no sense), for a day, when I need peace and relief from the pressure and turmoil that is modern Christianity.

    Like

  67. Lydia,

    I’d love you to read this. Reason: JD Hall had consistantly asked what bible book, chapter and verse forbids him from engaging Caners son. He also asks what he has to repent from several times, too.

    Well…here it is:
    http://hubpages.com/forum/topic/81144

    Everyone should read this!

    See if Peter Lumpkins would like this on his post. I can’t post on SBC. I was banned long ago…not by Peter, but by someone else.

    Peter’s Post:
    http://peterlumpkins.typepad.com/peter_lumpkins/2014/08/jd-hall-backs-away-from-crusade-against-ergun-caner-braxton-caner-suicide-social-media-abuse-cyber-stalking-bullying.html

    Ed

    Like

  68. Lydia,

    Even if Pulpit and Pen Blog no-longer exist and JD’s radio show ends and JD stops using twitter and he stops repetitively reminding his church how unworthy they are, all of which may be a blow to his ego, it won’t bring back Braxton.
    (and hopefully all these things will come to pass, in order for him to stop verbally abusing and preying on people)

    I guess I’m more in a fog by what is transpiring and whether or not JD endures what he has dished out is of not delight to me either way, I guess I have become either numb or callous.

    If it is determined that laws have been broken then I want the criminal justice system to do their job.

    I just want the abuse to stop, which is good.

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  69. Mark,

    Lydia had mentioned the word “consequences”. Sin has consequences. In the following there is a consequence for meddling. God warned him to not interfere, or else:

    2 Chronicles 35:21-24

    But Neco sent messengers to him, saying, “What have we to do with each other, O King of Judah? I am not coming against you today but against the house with which I am at war, and God has ordered me to hurry. Stop for your own sake from interfering with God who is with me, so that He will not destroy you.” However, Josiah would not turn away from him, but disguised himself in order to make war with him; nor did he listen to the words of Neco from the mouth of God, but came to make war on the plain of Megiddo. The archers shot King Josiah, and the king said to his servants, “Take me away, for I am badly wounded.” read more.So his servants took him out of the chariot and carried him in the second chariot which he had, and brought him to Jerusalem where he died and was buried in the tombs of his fathers. All Judah and Jerusalem mourned for Josiah.

    Somethin Bad!

    Ed

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  70. Ed, she is right. The thing with JD and his minions though is he makes it his business to call out other “Christians”. That is his “downgrade” focus. THAT is what his “ministry” is all about. He is in a war with other Christians he thinks are heretical or wrong.

    My guess is that if most people who are defending him, but not in that movement directly, read a lot of his stuff they would be embarrassed. Including Wade. I am thinking most went directly to the twitter exchange and that was it. I thought that was bad enough all by itself because he is a grown man and pastor….. but am also aware of all the other hate that they have spewed on folks for years and their authoritarian bent. They are also not aware of all the fake accounts used against people, etc.

    I am guessing, though. Maybe not. Maybe this is the new normal and if you hated Caner then whatever goes? These days nothing surprises me when it comes to Christendom. I have seen too much.

    I don’t think he will stop. I think he will lay low for a while because we all need money to live on. But, It is who he is and what his ministry is about. Just like James White is about debating pro Calvinism. It is what they know and do. To them it is Christianity and it pleases God.

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  71. Lydia,

    Ya, James White would debate the “exe-Jesus” about being a busy body, putting it in Greek historical context, blah, blah, blah, instead of seeing it for what it is.

    And, what it is, is equated to, ya know, that word that people is so afraid to say? That M word. 1 Peter 4:15.

    Ed

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  72. JD Hall and his minions act feral. My father who was southern Baptist acted like them, it gives them pleasure, amusement, and satisfaction to cause others pain.

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  73. My guess is that if most people who are defending him, but not in that movement directly, read a lot of his stuff they would be embarrassed. Including Wade. I am thinking most went directly to the twitter exchange and that was it.

    Lydia, have you been in my head? Stay tuned.

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  74. JD Hall and his minions act feral. My father who was southern Baptist acted like them, it gives them pleasure, amusement, and satisfaction to cause others pain.

    I’m curious about this, Guest. When we live with our parents, they set our “norms” for us. At what point did you decide to leave that “norm” and decide for yourself that your father was acting inappropriately?

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  75. I’m not at all sure that the people spoken about in the blog would understand or get it at all. They would probably feel they are doing what God had for them to do. Make war with others.

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  76. Kay,

    I’m about 1/2 way done with the 36 minute audio. So far, he seems to be justifying this. We will see what the rest of it states, but so far he seems to be glorifying himself, rather than God. Lots of “I” statements, and “My” statements. He seems to think that it is his job to fight. At one point he states that he was fired for being a whistle blower. Ahhh, now we are getting somewhere. He’s a disgruntled ex-employee.

    Well…I gotta take a break from listening to him for a moment. He’s too narcissistic so far.

    Ed

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  77. Well, he said a few things he definitely should have said, he said a few things that left me thinking, “Why would you say that?”, and then he left some important things unsaid.

    In particular, he never he said he shouldn’t have interacted with Braxton on Twitter. He said, instead, that he did it with the wrong spirit.

    Huh?! I don’t get it. So, it would’ve been ok to do that if it were approached differently? How about leave a 15-year old kid out of the whole thing?

    Talk is cheap, though. He claims that things will be different. We’ll see if (a) he truly does behave differently from now on, and (b) he reigns in his pulpiteers to do the same. I’m hopeful it will cause change, but I’m very skeptical.

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  78. Ed, He took a lot of his CV info offline because folks were pointing out the holes in it and problems with his timeline. I cannot remember the details but it went along the lines of something like, “successful church planter at age 18” or something like that. And, “award winning entrepreneur in marketing by age 26” or something like that. Cannot remember details but it was quite incredible.

    And that would be another point about these guys. You have to screen shot everything, follow every thing very closely, etc. Who wants to do that? They do. That is THEIR ministry.

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  79. “In particular, he never he said he shouldn’t have interacted with Braxton on Twitter. He said, instead, that he did it with the wrong spirit. ”

    He cannot say it was “wrong” in totality because that would negate his “downgrade” calling out ministry. Give an inch, remember? His defenders, the ones who really do not know that much about him, have no real clue what they are dealing with.

    And this is why even though I had a serious problem with Caner years ago, about a year into it, I was appalled at where it was going. I wanted no part of it. It reminded of the tactics of Doug Phillips and those guys.

    Like

  80. I wanted to chime in about Chris Rosebrough’s recent show…the same one that’s already been mentioned. I didn’t transcript it word-for-word, so you might want to listen. It’s only about a 15 minute portion of his show where he discusses this situation.

    Here are my notes on what I thought was a particularly interesting part. Rosebrough (CR) is obviously using this tragic situation to further his own agenda.

    In the show, CR says there are “two main camps in the SBC….the Arminian/Palegian and Monergist/Reformed” (sorry for any misspellings). Says there is an “internal feud” in the SBC.

    Also, CR says the Armenians/Palegians, who are defenders of Caner, are taking the exploiting Braxton’s suicide to smear the character of Jordan Hall.

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  81. Kay, I have heard it before but am always wondering why he talks about “millions” going through his hands, award winning, breaking records, etc but never the name or type of business. It has been a mystery. The dates for the college stuff are easy enough and I graduated HS early, too, and started college before 18, So I get that part. but the timing of taking it down and then responding are curious. JD can question others but cannot be questioned himself without it being a sin.

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  82. Darlene,

    Pretty sad stuff.

    In Chris Rosenboroughs world, calling people Pelagian is an insult. It means they are heretics. Arminians are tolerable. They are Calvin-lite. I first came across the Pelagian insult a few years back so I started to see what I could find. You can find nothing written by him because it was all destroyed so you have to glean it from the various council stuff that deemed him a heretic. Augustine deemed him a heretic. From what I could glean, I agree with Pelagius more than Augustine! Pelagius basically thought the determinism was not Christianity. And because of that he believed man had the ability to decide for Christ or not and the ability to live a holy lilfe. He also believed that people could have kept the law if they wanted to. (I agree with that, btw, because I cannot fathom a God who would make laws He knew His people “could NOT” keep. Can you imagine doing that to YOUR children? But many believe God did just that to people)

    That is my take on it anyway.

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  83. Darlene,

    That’s is about the jist of it. Sounds like politics, huh? But it’s not just politics. It’s nasty war of words.

    Whenever I debate a Calvinist, or as they like to call themselves, reformed, they accuse me of being a pelican, or whatever they call it. Or, they accuse me of being an artesian, or whatever they call it. I have no idea why they only think that there are only those two choices. Most people that I know have no clue as to what those are.

    But yes, the SBC is having serious problems attempting to integrate Calvinism beliefs with the Baptists, many of which either do not believe in Calvinism, or are ignorant of what Calvinists believe. And it is causing much conflict.

    Ed

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  84. Ed,
    I was raised a Baptist, not SBC, Missionary Baptist that came out of SBC. I’m told because the SBC was allowing women preachers. There could be more to that story, but I was too young at that time to care and didn’t ask later on. Depending on who the preacher was at the time, I had no problem with the teachings of the MBA. I’m not sure if the MBA even exists anymore. When trying to find a local church in that association I couldn’t find one closer than 60 miles away.

    The whole Calvanist/ Arminian thing was never an issue or brought up. Until a few years ago I couldn’t have told you who believed what. We were advised not to listen to Christian Radio or ever go into a Catholic church for any reason. The whole “wind of doctrine” thing could mess with your thinkin’. There were more southerners in the church than were from MI.

    The church I attend now doesn’t claim either Calvanism or Arminian (spelling??). They look to the Bible and simply believe the Gospel. Anything outside of that is up for debate.

    The way it is looking to me. The SBC could have another division. Calvanism is not going to go over with a lot of true Southern Baptists. Drive through TX and you can’t drive through a small town without finding a small Southern Baptist church. There are the mega churches in Houston and the like. But there are many small churches with the old town ways.

    Brenda

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  85. Brenda, “The church I attend now doesn’t claim either Calvanism or Arminian (spelling??). They look to the Bible and simply believe the Gospel. Anything outside of that is up for debate.”

    As you may notice, I make fun of the word Arminian, and that other one, I can’t remember.  I call it Artesian, and Pelican.  That’s just out of sarcasm, tho.  Most everyone that I personally know that are Christians have no clue what those people ever believed, nor do they even care.  How can I be accused of being either of those two when I have no clue as to what they even believe?

    What you said above is exactly how I know Christianity.  We all (non-Calvinists) believe the gospel just the same way, and we know that the things that we debate together is not going to affect our standing with God.  We see the debate as fun, and informative.  Others, such as Calvinism see the debate as divisive, and blasphemous on our part if we disagree, hence the sin of rebellion, punishable with church discipline.

    I think it was Mark, here on the blog, that first informed me about a year ago or so about the stealth tactics of the Calvinists to infiltrate and take over the Baptist church’s.  At first, I was skeptical about that.  But then I found a specific Baptist web site that had a step by step process of how to turn a Baptist church into a Calvinist Baptist church…in the stealth mode.  And based on those steps, it was going to be a long term process.  It had to be, because, as part of those procedures, they didn’t want to lose the congregation, so they slowly had to creep in Calvinist doctrines, so that no one would notice.

    Mark attended one of those church’s.  For a while he was blaming himself for staying for so long, because he knows the bible.  It was shortly after his testimony on Julie Anne’s blog that I discovered the SBC website…then I see Lydia posting there a lot, too.  I had a little chat with Peter Lumpkins, and he has absolutely no problem with the integration, although he disagrees with much of Calvinism, he still thinks it’s a good thing.  I totally disagree.  Everyone is supposed to be “like minded”, not all over the place. 

    I’m not a Baptist, or a Calvinist.  I’m just non-denomination.  It’s easier that way.  No politics.  The preacher reports, I decide.  I don’t want dead people deciding for me, i.e. conventions that happened some 400+ years ago that I didn’t attend, nor was I invited.  I wasn’t even invited to that Catholic meeting in 325 AD, either.  Why is it that dead people are making decisions for all further generations?  It reminds me of Al Gore when he began his global warming campaign.  The first words from his mouth was, “The debate is over!”.  

    In regards to Baptists, I remember the movie Blue Chips with Nick Nolte.  In the movie, he would meet the families of those who he was trying to recruit for his college basketball team.  When they would mention what church they go to, he would say, “I was raised a _________ (whatever the family said).  One father stated that he was a Baptist, and Nick said that he was raised Baptist.  The father pressed him on that and asked, “First Baptist, or Southern Baptist”, and luckily Nick said “Well, First Baptist, of course”, for which the Father said, “Well, good, cuz we don’t think that much of Southern Baptists around here.”

    Ed

    ________________________________

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  86. I’m not a Baptist, or a Calvinist. I’m just non-denomination.

    That is where I am in this stage of life.The church I attend no longer has Baptist on their sign and were always independant anyways, never part of an association of any sort and were never going to be so it is now a Bible Church. I had pause about it at first, but have gotten over that through my un-brainwashing and independant reading and research.

    The preacher reports, I decide

    Yepper!! If I don’t agree or have questions about what is said, he hears about it. I sometimes think he doesn’t carry scripture deep enough and doesn’t mention that abuse is spoken of in scripture ever, so I do not hesitate to point it out. A couple of weeks ago he spoke on love. Big topic. Jesus has perfect love, without question I agree. Us humans have love as long as we are getting something in return, if not I’m moving on–didn’t agree. So I sent an article titled, ” I left him because I loved him.” That spoke of a different kind of love. The woman loved her man enough to not allow him to sin against her any longer even though she still loved him in spite of himself. (I can’t remember if it was from ACFJ or Leslie Vernick’s blogs.) With her away, he had to change his ways, at least against her. I belief that love is a choice in addition to a feeling. Others may not agree with me, they will say it is one or the other, but I am certainly not going to argue the point.

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  87. Hi Ed,

    I may have mis-quoted in that is was my lack of biblical literacy that kept me from realizing my former Pastor was Stealth, making me and my wife vulnerable to his lengthy and deceptive abuse.

    Even after I left that church it took along time before God revealed to me this Pastor Sinning against the church

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