Pastors Tullian Tchividjian + Bob Coy + Sexual Sin + Church Leaders Who Protect Immoral Pastors = A Broken Church

Tullian Tchividjian, Bob Coy, Church Leaders Response, Clergy Sex Abuse, Sexual Infidelity, Spiritual Abuse, Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale


 

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I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.

He who is a hired hand and not a shepherd, who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them.

He flees because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.

I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep.

John 10:11-15

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If you were a church leader, and your pastor was caught in sexual sin, how would you handle it? I was trying to think about this as it relates to the Tullian Tchividjian scandal.

Some church leaders may not be thinking clearly when it is discovered that their pastor has had a sexual relationship outside of marriage with another woman (congregant or otherwise). Now, perhaps their initial thoughts are that if the congregation finds out, they won’t be able to handle it, it’s too messy, and it will be a disruption. These justifications are valid. Maybe their thinking is that if those very few people who know about it can “take care of it,” then the church can move on as normal and everything will be fine. That seems legit  So maybe their original intent of protecting the church body was initially a good one. But it doesn’t usually end well.

Another way leaders sometimes handle sexual sin is by addressing only some of the sexual sins. They minimize the extent of it, again, so as to not let it appear too messy.  They are still covering up sin, and this is obviously not full disclosure. When congregants find out that it was far more than leaders disclose, this is problematic.

A comment came in last night from someone who is not the “other woman” or the wife of the pastor, or close friends of anyone involved. This comment came from a congregant. I suspect that this commenter was probably not very close with her pastor, but has been a regular attender, trusting her pastor(s) and church leaders to live according to Biblical qualifications of elders (1 Tim), and to appropriately shepherd the flock. That seems reasonable, right?

But what we will read below is how far reaching and destructive it is when, first, a pastor has a sexual relationship outside his marriage, and second, when church leaders fail to handle the sin appropriately.

When church leaders pay more attention to caring, covering up, and protecting their wayward pastor than the hurting sheep, the Body of Christ is harmed, sometimes spiritually and emotionally shattered. Is this what the Bible alludes to when the church becomes a sheep with no shepherd?

On a slightly different note, as I read comments from congregants about their pastors’ sexual sins, sometimes I read that a sinful and sexual relationship between a pastor and another woman is between them and God. This is not true.

The sexual sin of a pastor extends far beyond the bedroom and into the House of God.

It rocks people’s faith. It can makes people not trust any church leader. Some will quit church entirely. I hope Debbie’s story below will help to illustrate a common response from congregants whose pastors have failed morally.

I want to thank Debbie * for risking to share her personal story with us, especially after her story was not well received elsewhere.  ~ja

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Debbie’s Personal Story: Betrayed and Wounded

Gonna take a chance and post this here. First time poster. Former Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church (CRPC) member. I was there when Tullian Tchividjian (TT) came in 2009. As a voting member, I took the word of our Pulpit Nominating Committee and voted to bring TT and merge his church with CRPC.

It didn’t take long for me to see something was wrong with TT. His sermons seemed, off, somehow. He had a bold yet somewhat (to me) arrogant presence in the pulpit. And then the trouble really began.

He disbanded CRPC’s contemporary worship team and installed his team from New City (his former church). Note that he did not bring the two together; he “fired” Coral Ridge’s group.

He made several other hurtful decisions and took some drastic actions. Just a few months into his tenure, many people were questioning the wisdom of bringing him in. We followed procedure to recall him. The voting process was NOT a secret ballot; I signed my name to the ballot when I cast it. I questioned this and was told, “well, that’s how we’re doing it.” I voted to recall him. By this time, the church was split. My dear, close friends of many years were split, some agreed with me and some sided with Tullian. It was a terrible, wrenching, hurtful time. After the vote, the recriminations began. They knew who had voted to oust him, and they proceeded with ruthless precision to cull the dissenters. I could give details of Tullian’s destruction, but I’ll withhold.

I left the church and after a year or two of not attending anywhere, ended up at Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale. Some time after I arrived, then-pastor Bob Coy was caught with his pants down and resigned. Another shocker. Initially the church was hush hush, then came clean. Bob left without any direct apology to the congregation. He left. We were told to pray for him. The church elders made a “Coy Family Care Plan” to support Bob. Later he divorced his wife.

So here I have experienced two devastating spiritual and moral betrayals by pastors. (Tullian’s brother, Stephan, is a pastor at Calvary Fort Lauderdale).

Tullian Tchividjian, Bob Coy, Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, CRPC, sexual sins, clergy sex abuseThe Lord had me remain at Calvary, although I followed Tullian’s “career” from afar. I saw his falling out with The Gospel Coalition, and felt like I could see his spiritual arrogance and others could not. I was confused by this, as it seemed so obvious to me. His defenders seemed to indulge in a blind sort of hero worship. I felt angry but also somewhat vindicated as TT was showing his true colors.

Then came news of Tullian’s adultery. Like Bob Coy, he resigned and left. I was disgusted and angry. I hated how he threw his wife under the bus in an effort to justify his sin. I felt like yelling, “I WARNED YOU. He doesn’t care about anybody but himself. Why can’t you see how he refuses to accept correction?”

I shared on another blog about TT and was read the riot act. I was interrogated as to how I could dare say this man’s public statement didn’t show true repentance! I was told that his sin didn’t hurt anybody but himself and his family. I was shocked. I said, “He is a PASTOR!” I felt like I had to defend myself against this Christian blog by explaining how heinous it was for a minister of Christ to commit adultery. I’m still smarting over it. I actually had to lay it out for this guy how devastating this was for the congregation and for the Name of Christ. Unbelievable.

Now come the latest revelations regarding Tullian. I am angry and grieved all over again.

Tonight, a friend and I began looking for another church. It was Palm Sunday, and unbeknownst to us, the one we went to had a concert. It was very good, focusing on the seven last words of Christ. They talked about the sufferings of the cross and what Jesus did for sinners. I was moved to contemplate my Savior’s sacrifice for me and I felt humble gratitude. It was great to go to church and hear the Name of Jesus exalted in word and hymnody.

I am deeply angry at Bob and Tullian. They wrecked scores of lives and got off scot-free. People did not listen when I warned about Tullian, and others mocked me when I opined that he was unrepentant. I feel betrayed and wounded. I’m beginning to think that I was a victim of spiritual abuse. Why else would all of these feelings be coming out? I am taking a chance that this is a safe place. It seems like I needed to get a lot off my chest. Thanks for letting me write this; I hope this was the appropriate place to do it.

 


*Debbie’s name has been changed for privacy

photo credit: I believe this flower pot has fallen from a great height via photopin (license)

251 comments on “Pastors Tullian Tchividjian + Bob Coy + Sexual Sin + Church Leaders Who Protect Immoral Pastors = A Broken Church

  1. From 2008 on Pat Robertson:

    (As an aside, what some in my parents generation who knew the Grahams have referred to as something of an “arranged marriage”, Tullians mom , Gigi, married the son of a very wealthy Swiss businessman at the age of 17)

    However, in this clip, Tullian maintains he was raised in a loving home. I wonder if he and his siblings all had trust funds.

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  2. I believe the history of the word aninomian was originated by Martin Luther in year 15xx. Most often used by denominations that pride themselves between having the proper distinction between Law and Gospel. A difficult balance.

    The critique against Pharisees was Matt 9:13 “But go and learn what this means, I desire mercy not sacrifice”. The same phrase was also said Hos 6:6. The keepers of so called biblical truth were using that truth abusively/manipulatively and did not see the issues of their own heart or their own need for a savior. The words go and learn what this means, I believe, says this is not an easy to understand or “to do” truth. Jesus wants to ponder that truth and mull it over daily.

    I personally do not see a lot of critique by Jesus of the pharisees being antinomian in scripture. Maybe you can lead me to the scripture.

    I do agree that TT was clearly angled the antinomian direction… but to swing to the polar opposite is just as bad if not worse.

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  3. “As they grow up, they watch people to see how they operate and relate, and they mimic what they see (some get pretty good at it) but the underlying feelings/values are not there.”
    …………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

    I’ve worked beside a handful of people in the church or the corporate world who I’d guess met the criteria for NPD (or whatever they call it under DSM-5, “antisocial personality disorder”?). Having spent fair time in both, it appears based on my anecdotal experience as if the disorder is more common among church leaders than among any group in the private sector (there was that recent scholarly research out of Canada which put the percentage of NPDs among pastors at something like 25% overall and 40% for those in their 20s or 30s, which is stunning, because the numbers for the general population are very low, a few percent maybe, and dealing with one with NPD essentially means that you’re dealing with someone who simply could not care less about you, perhaps would just as soon slit your throat, so long as they perceived it would benefit them. Amazing to think that nearly half of all young pastors might be conscienceless monsters–though it would explain a lot that we experience and recount here.

    One thing I wonder about is what you said about the lack of values. Is it possible for someone to lack empathy, to be a full blown NPD, yet still have the values? I.e., they might feel no empathy, but know in their hearts that to slander or murder you is wrong, and thus refuse to do it. Could someone with NPD somehow come to know the Lord and navigate through life simply making the right decisions because they know they’re right? I ask this not in pure abstraction, we have a large family, some children have great empathy, some, brought up in the same environment, struggle with this. What of one with aspergers or tendencies on that spectrum? They struggle with empathy a great deal, yet I’ve known such people who undeniably knew the Lord, yet have a great deal of difficulty with empathy. I’m not a psychologist, so just talking as a layman.

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  4. “I believe the history of the word aninomian was originated by Martin Luther in year 15xx. Most often used by denominations that pride themselves between having the proper distinction between Law and Gospel. A difficult balance.”

    The Greek means “against law”. Luther did not originate the word or the understanding. Most protestants think all understanding comes from the Reformation. Off the top of my head, we see it in Matthew 23 and I John 3

    “The critique against Pharisees was Matt 9:13 “But go and learn what this means, I desire mercy not sacrifice”. The same phrase was also said Hos 6:6. The keepers of so called biblical truth were using that truth abusively/manipulatively and did not see the issues of their own heart or their own need for a savior. The words go and learn what this means, I believe, says this is not an easy to understand or “to do” truth. Jesus wants to ponder that truth and mull it over daily.”

    The real critique is Matthew 23

    “I personally do not see a lot of critique by Jesus of the pharisees being antinomian in scripture. Maybe you can lead me to the scripture.”

    See above. One of the problems is how we have been taught about the law, covenants, etc. It is a mess in most of Protestant and Catholic theologies. People will believe just about anything that keeps them being responsible for their behavior. Whether God determined it or they can say a few words and make the consequences go away. They think there is no law or that the law is strict adherence to Leviticus. They are not taught why God gave the Isrealites the law after centuries of slavery bondage with Pagans. And they are not taught that truth that God has always preferred we practice mercy and justice…even in the OT. You would think His going to the Cross and subsequent resurrection would get their attention. He conquered death and sin has no power over us to make us want to harm others….unless we allow it.

    “I do agree that TT was clearly angled the antinomian direction… but to swing to the polar opposite is just as bad if not worse. ”

    I am not clear on what you think the opposite is. I would hate to live in a world with no laws. There could be no justice.

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  5. Hi Lydia.

    I understand your connection but I don’t interpret Matthew 23 as a warning against antinomianism. its a bit more general than that and its just as applicable to the pharisee “being fastidiously good for God” but not necessarily seeing the sin of his own heart. As a matter of fact it is a reminder of exactly that!

    1 John is a better example. The law shows us our sin and implores us to action,,, but Romans reminds us or our total inability to please God based on our efforts. We all have no right to look down on any other sinner …. and no matter who we talk to we should have an “eye to eye” relationship rather than look down on them.

    Then Romans builds up to Romans 12 where it says “In view of Gods mercy to offer our bodies as living and pleasing sacrifices, Holy and pleasing to God. The words too oft forgotten is “In view of Gods mercy”.

    Sorry, hope you take the minor disagreement respectfully! If not I will stop. 🙂

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  6. To be honest no one can change Tullian except Tullian. However, we in the church can learn lessons from this and change ourselves so we don’t get caught up in messes like this!! If we don’t learn those lessons then we will keep going down this rabbit trail over and over and over and over. I am too old and too tired to keep getting my heart broken over these things all the time.

    I really want to learn to see the signs and avoid leadership like this. I don’t want to vote a person to be a leader in the church like these guys we have been discussing. Something is wrong with us in the pew that we keep falling for people like this and give them our hearts, money and power.

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  7. Centrality, I have no problem with disagreement. In my view it is iron sharpening iron. Early on you claimed to be a fan of Tullians but it seems you are now saying he did lean to far on the antinomian side.

    The lawless position is here in Matthew 23

    23 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the other”

    The Jews were to be the light of the world. Neglecting justice oppresses people. Neglecting justice means there cannot be mercy. God is a good God. A good God does not ignore injustice toward innocents and He does not want us to, either.

    Tullians message turns being bad into being a good thing. There is a lot more to this which includes how we view the cross/resurrection but I suspect we are boring others. :o)

    Btw: I totally disagree with you about Romans which you end up contradicting with your explanation of 1John. Most Protestants read it as about individual salvation. I read it as explaining the Jew/Gentile dichotomy (corporate election) that was becoming a big problem in Rome as the Jews (including converted Jews) were coming back after being banished by Claudius. The Gentiles Christians in Rome knew nothing of the Law of these strange segregated people they were now to be united with in their small house churches around Rome.. To argue that Law was a big problem for them or they needed to understand the grace/law arguments so used today, sadly, seems to miss the point.

    Do some backtracking on Romans 3 and what Paul is quoting and why. Romans cannot be proof texted. You cannot even lift a chapter! It is a long culminating treatise on the Jew/Gentile path to salvation with lots of twists and turns.

    Yes we CAN please God. We see Him saying so in the OT.

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  8. Interesting commentary here and Mrs. C, you have a great point for we see the effects of wicked leadership playing the same old broken record of lording it over Jesus’ sheep. Having come out of an abusive Assembly of God religious system, the ‘sinning’ pastor frequently blamed satan for all of his lustful behavior. He would always say, “We’re going to kick some devil butt!”

    My observations on all of this sexual perversion within the religious system, combined with all of the excuses and scapegoating on the part of the leadership network, is this:

    There are some spoiled rotten personalities within visible Christianity who have this entitlement mentality and were probably not told the word “No” very often during their growing up years, nor were they disciplined properly in their families according to ways of our LORD. These religious leader types were probably the “center” of attention frequently, using their charm and charismatic personality in getting everything they desired in life. And when they got caught stealing the cookie from mom’s cookie jar so to speak……the blame was shoved off on another family member, the neighbor, the friend, the family pet, or a funny story was offered up as a way to soften up the situation, so there was never any punishment for the consequences of their bad behavior. These very dangerous individuals learned the ways of power and control, manipulation and coerciveness at an early age in using people to their advantage. Remember, Moses was not a gifted speaker, nor was the Apostle Paul…..they were not slick tongued.

    And when these highly important religious individuals are caught in their sin and their bag of scapegoating tricks do not work anymore, they turn around and blame satan for their wicked and evil ways. And the blind religious laity falls for the same song and dance, feeling sorry for the pastor/leader wolf in sheep’s clothing and keeping him in the position of authority over the church system.

    Oh, but when the lower laity dog exhibits the same sin, the spoiled rotten pastor/leaders do not pour out the same love, mercy, and grace afforded to the wicked, evil leader. Oh heavens no! I have witnessed the double standards played out over and over again in every church system that I have attended for which I now call it the ‘the churches’ selective service program.’ Selective mercy, selective grace, selective love, selective compassion, selective empathy, selective damage control, selective forgiveness, SELECTIVE everything depending upon who you are and how you can be used within the false religious system. Even ‘selective hate, selective destruction, and selective shunning/excommunication against those who are not brainwashed by the wicked religious system at hand.

    And what appears to be the visible form of Christianity will hate you with a passion, when you choose to leave the lordship of wicked men and women, and choose to follow and believe on our LORD Jesus Christ as His Free Servant. So what about the priesthood of every believer…….knowing this truth is actually liberating!

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  9. Hi Lydia, Respectful disagreement again. I am betting you belong to a Church of Nazarene to Methodist Church from your interpretation that you are using? In that respect we would have a different “lens” in which we view scripture. 🙂

    I do agree Jesus came to intensify the law. However, he did not do in a way that did not “double down” on the law. He did it in way that emphasized Mercy grace and compassion toward sinners. (Matt 9:13).

    Paul himself called himself a Pharisee better than all pharisees. Paul is described in scripture as “faultless in legalistic righteoussness as pharisee — which, I believe, is the a good definition of a pharisee. When it came to the “law keeping”, above reproach. Paul lived as a Pharisee and kept the law according to the strictest sect of the religion, Hebrew of Hebrews, faultless in legalistic righteousness (See Phil 3:5).

    Justice, in my opinion was clearly a part of what the pharisees did. What they neglected was compassion and mercy. All because they did not see their own sin because of the “great acts of legalistic righteousness”. As it says in the scripture below is the Pharisee was “confident” of his own righteousness. The word righteousness is a word that is rich in meaning in scripture and the world has issue in where they find their righteousness.

    A great example of the difference between a pharisee and “a sinner” is in the parable of the pharisee and the tax collector. Believe me in this scripture the pharisee wanted his version of “justice”. What he lacked was the compassion, mercy, and the ability to see his own sin. He looked down on the tax collector. You see the same thing in scripture when you see Jesus at the Pharisees house with the sinful woman.

    The Parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector
    9 To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’

    13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’

    14 “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

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  10. In terms of the Matthew 23 reference on Hypocrisy.

    The best thing to take away from that as you look at all the scriptures is:

    Everyone is a hypocrite. Will we be irritating hypocrites who can do no wrong, or endearing ones who humbly own our faults and frailties?

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  11. TruthDetector, I’m not an expert, I just have an interest in these things because of a few people I have had involvement with in my life, so I’ve done a lot of reading. The question of NPD vs autism comes up because autistic people have difficulty ascertaining what others are feeling and responding appropriately. As I understand it, the autistic person does have empathy in the broader sense, though, they know what it is to experience love, be hurt, etc, and they do not want to hurt the people they love. They simply are unable to express it. I’ve read that some autistic people feel others’ pain more extremely than normal and so avoid connecting with others, even.

    The NPD person, on the other hand has no idea what others feel because they do not experience it. They don’t feel love, they don’t feel shame, they don’t feel guilt or remorse. These feelings are missing from their experience. They can become very skillful at looking as if they do, though, because they realize that to get what they want, they have to speak the language of us normal people. The NPD can learn the rules and follow them as far as it takes to achieve their goals, since they know breaking the rules will lead to disapproval and loss of things they want, but the rules themselves are not internalized as moral beliefs. The NPD therefore has a public and a private self, the public one is a facade designed to get them where they want to be. The private one is the real thing.

    Maybe someone with training could chime in and give more info but this is how I understand it.

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  12. Shy1, Like you no expert. I have a good friend that runs a 60+ counselor counseling that is NOT in a church…. but they hire only Christians. She specializes in abuse, abandonment, NPD, etc. All the more than a common cold variety of counseling cases!

    https://www.quora.com/Is-Narcissistic-Personality-Disorder-treatable

    From the site:
    The way to make inroads is to go to the source issue; the abandoned child. The starving child who now needs an endless supply of pats on the head. Money, sex, power, prestige, fame, will never be enough. What ever level is achieved gets normalized so another more intense level must be used to prove worth. It all goes back to abandonment. If we can get that inner child ,The Blessing, that hyper-possessive/achievement externally driven can calm down and relax. Once the soul of that child is full-filled, there is no manic fear of constant loss. Good enough is normalized as the grief and loss the child was always under is acknowledged and healed. No more performing for value. A human being can be present instead of an ass-hole of a manipulator.

    So the emotional side can then risk exposure and make mistakes instead of being one. Empathy can be accessed to allow real connection with others. In real life, the narcissist has many survival habits which are difficult to change at best. Many aspects have to be constantly monitored and corrected. A good partner and or group is critical for real time feedback. Lots of AA groups are full of narcissist who used alcohol as boosters and are now learning to feel not only themselves, but have empathy for others. So improvements can be had. But it generally takes a lot of work and time to not have a flinch response anytime they feel they are losing in some way, shape, or form. With practice being clean, a real boy can be made out of Pinocchio.

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  13. Also, like I said previously I have a glass half full mentality… I so believe those words above “With practice being clean, a real boy can be made out of Pinocchio.”

    🙂

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  14. Antinomianism vs legalism…
    If we have truly believed, Christ delivered us from the law and its penalty.
    We are no longer under the law, we no longer live by law.
    We will not suffer the penalty of the law, Christ took our suffering on himself.
    He made us new creations. He changed our hearts.

    Does this mean we should “continue in sin so that grace may increase? May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?” Romans 6:1-2

    If we love Christ, we do not want to sin against him. Not for fear of punishment but because we love him. If we love Christ, we are already sinning more than we want to.

    Yes, we still fail. Look at Peter, in spite of loving Christ and wanting in his heart to support him to death, he denied him 3 times.

    Did Peter need the law to make him repent?
    Did he need accountability and discipline to force him to see his error and do the right thing? No, he only needed Christ’s gaze to meet his, and the depths of his betrayal cut him to the heart. He went out and wept bitterly.

    Do you think Peter continued to boast of his great loyalty to Christ after this experience? Do you think he continued to betray Christ and then weep bitterly, only to do it again and again? I doubt it. I expect that one experience never left him and if he could, he would have gone back and undone it.

    I see the difference between legalism and our position as new creations in Christ as this:

    When you love someone, you don’t need a list of rules to check your behavior against every day, with penalties to scare you into doing what’s right. You automatically think of how your behavior would affect them when you do it because you care about them.

    As an example, one person avoids committing adultery because there is a rule against it and they’d get in trouble and look bad.
    Another person hates the very thought of adultery because they love their spouse and would:
    1. be appalled at the thought of joining to someone else and
    2. be heartbroken at the thought of causing pain to the person they love

    The end result may look the same but the heart attitude is a difference of night and day! It is the heart attitude that is the important thing.

    It is a difficult difference to put into words and writing, yet we can often discern when we are with a couple if they truly love one another or the marriage is a loveless resignation to following rules. The heart attitude is different.

    James 2:18
    “show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.”

    If you love someone, your overall behavior cannot help but show it, even if at times you mess up.

    Romans 13:8-10
    Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. For this, “You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself. Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.”

    1 John 4:19
    “We love, because He first loved us.”

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  15. Centrality, Methodists are basically Protestant. I am not really identified with any group. The reformed Neo Cals accuse me of being Pelagian. Which I find interesting since most of what we know from him comes from his detractors like Augustine. And I see Augustine as introducing a system of Christianity that merged in Greek paganism.

    We won’t get far if you keep talking law. Can we agree that scripture has that focus because Jews were the early church. What do we Gentiles have to do with law except to understand the Trajectory of how God tried to get a people on the right path thinking of Him every minute? (Which is what Romans is about)

    We have made an unnecessary enemy of the law. If it was that important, Jesus would never have bothered with John the Baptist, an outlier, who disdained the temple and Jerusalem! Yet, He made a point to bother with Him.

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  16. Centrality, is your friend the one person on that page who thinks NPD is treatable? Out of all the other professionals who say no?

    My own experience is the NPD plays the counselor just as they play everyone else. They’re always playing a role, always learning how to manipulate better. It’s easy to figure out a counselor’s vulnerabilities and exploit them, a simple game to the NPD.

    Unfortunately, there is no way to go back and redo infancy. The brain is never open in the same way again. Treatment, if you want to call it that, consists of convincing the NPD that certain behaviors are more likely to serve them than others.

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  17. Methodists and Nazarenes are Christians/portestants too. I agree. 🙂

    I have been on both sides of the fence. Calvinism and Arminian/semi-pelagian. I made a decision to read Greg Boyd and Arminian theology as if it were true for several years. IN other words, I did not want to ready Greg as a critique before I started. I wanted to keep an open mind. I made an about turn to return back to my gospel-centric roots at some point… hence my name. I agree with him on some points … on other points I disagree.

    I remember a Pastor friend one say that both the Calvinist both sides use “human reason” to interpret scripture in different ways. The calvinist has a high regard for Gods sovereignty and providence. The Arminian values Gods love and free-will.

    What he said then left an impact, [Our denomination] has a lens that interprets scripture through the Gospels and the eyes of Christ. And we can let seemingly paradoxical truths exist without using human reason or even being a fundamentalist church. I love being part of a Church that gets to say “we don’t have all the answers”.

    For 10 years I really missed that Gospel-centric thinking and I feel good having returned to a Church that seems emotionally healthy and theologically stable … and centered on Christ.

    Anyhow fun conversation for me…. boring for others I am sure.

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  18. Shy,

    My friend discusses NPD once in while when she advises us at Marriage Rebuilders…a ministry for Marriages in crisis. So we talk in detail once a year or so and NPD comes up once in a while… context.

    I believe she would say the same as the link I sent you. Treatable… yes …. but likelihood is low that a person will develop the awareness required and then stick to all the hard work required.

    Sometimes she uses the word manageable more than treatable. NPD is also a spectrum disorder and at the end of the day we are guessing at TT’s issues.

    However, I still believe if the pain and abandonment issues can be seen by an individual, I believe they can make some good progress. However, who wants to confess or think that the loving, Graham family has any issues?

    One of the issues with abandonment is that emotional abandonment often comes from “loving homes”. Nobody wants to think a loving mother or father emotionally abandoned you. And by abandonment I don’t mean that a parent left the house. It often means we did not get the right training from our parents… often maybe they did not have the skills themselves or they were managing other earthquake events when we were growing up and they were not available to help the children.

    I once heard another friend/counselor say say if the record does not have the grooves you cant play the song. Abandonment makes it so you don’t have all the grooves in the first place. How can you work on or with something you never had in the first place.

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  19. Shy… one last thing I remember her saying…. I love this friend and her husband and all the tidbits I get from them, btw. She often uses the word “emotional muscle memory” and she reminds us that the brain is plastic and we can learn to use emotional muscles in new ways. It takes learning some emotional excercises and lots of practice to work those muscles and it feels very awkward at first to work them.

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  20. “Everyone is a hypocrite. Will we be irritating hypocrites who can do no wrong, or endearing ones who humbly own our faults and frailties?”

    A hypocrite, by definition, is someone who pretends to hold beliefs while acting in opposition to them privately, so someone who is open about their failures would not be a hypocrite, exactly. Nevertheless, the ideal would be to move on to better things.

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  21. Centrality, that can be helpful for someone who experienced abandonment or abuse AFTER their personality was formed. For someone whose personality was formed without conscience, there is no memory to go back to. As I said, it is like a missing limb. You can’t learn conscience. It’s either there or it isn’t. And if it isn’t by about age 5 it’s not going to happen.

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  22. “For 10 years I really missed that Gospel-centric thinking”

    I wish I knew what that meant. I hear it all the time at ground zero from the Neo Cals and it has become somewhat of a Christianese mantra.

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  23. I think we should keep in mind that certain religious beliefs encourage a narcissistic mindset. For example, if one believes they are a part of the Christian elite, or Christian royalty, this lends to seeing others in as merely a stepping stone to bigger and better things. The ends will justify the means but in God’s world He is concerned with ends and means. I would say there are a lot of people in the church that holds to these beliefs instead of the true Gospel of Jesus Christ. Many of them are in leadership and because the church has become so illiterate in the Bible they can’t spot it.

    These leaders, like Tullian, refuse to dialog/debate with their peers/other leaders who are literate in the Scriptures. The prefer to control the dialog by going to the illiterate like Good Morning America on FOX, or Morning Joe, because they know they will never be asked hard theological questions where they have to make a Biblically coherent case for their preaching using the whole Bible. Folks like Tullian can preach on one subject, that appeals to the masses, at the exclusion of the many other doctrines in the Bible and get away with it. He is loved and worshiped because he appeals to so many heart needs. They appear to have higher knowledge then others, or secret knowledge, so you must go to them to get it or read their books to figure it out. The are radical and not boring. These guys constantly talk about their experiences with the Gospel because no one can argue with a person’s experience. All experiences are valid and no one can questioned an experience, or ask for proofs. Time that the church stops the insanity in my opinion!

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  24. Kay, your analysis is well reasoned and I appreciate it. Your insight also applies to Bob Coy’s sin, non-confession, and non-apology.

    This April marks two years since Coy was confronted and resigned. He has yet to confess, apologize to the congregation and, to my knowledge, repent. He has not confessed! All that has been told to the church is secondhand.

    Every time Coy’s name is mentioned, it rips open the scars again. The revisited pain is compounded by comments from those who clamor for his return. We are told, if Coy is mentioned, to pray for him.

    I truly hope (and suppose that I should pray) that Calvary Chapel Ft. Lauderdale’s leaders do not mark the “anniversary” of Coy’s sin with an “update.” The only update I want to hear is that Bob Coy is greatly sorrowful for the damage he did to his family and the women he slept with, as well as the hundreds of people who trusted him as their Senior Pastor.

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  25. Lydia,

    Yes, your right. The neo calvs or calvs often discuss a “gospel-gap” in theology. I would agree but often see an “emotional immaturity” on people that hang on to one extreme side of theology or the other. The idea of emotional maturity is one of my mantras as I live out my faith. And I believe gospel-centric should lead to emotional maturity. If it does not, its probaly not as gospel-centric as one thinks it is.

    Probably way too long of a thought to make clear on a BLOG so will leave these links:

    https://centralityofthegospel.wordpress.com/i-have-a-dream/
    https://centralityofthegospel.wordpress.com/gospel-life-applications/

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  26. I have never heard of a “Gospel gap” in Theology but that everything is to be “Gospel centered”. Sounds good but It is getting into the daily praxis where it breaks down. The Good News is the Good News. It is done. What we do with its truths is another matter. I read your link and am more confused with the merging of Covey and scripture. What you suggest only works if both parties are on the same page. Cheap grace bought Coral Ridge a clever con man.

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  27. Lydia, I think TT preached grace at the exclusion of everything else. I thought it was lopsided teaching. My friends keep saying he is extra-Biblical which means he adds not takes away. TT was invited several times to debate, and defend his position, with other teachers of the Word. He turned it down. I only saw him once on stage with four other men at a Baptist seminary who were Bible literate and they lobbed him soft questions. TT’s responses went to default mode, which is sharing his experiences with the Gospel, who can argue with one’s experiences, pulling out snappy quotes from other teachers which gives the impression he is well read, and using humor, which makes him likable. When you see TT in comparison to other men, that teach the Bible, it is enlightening. I think this is why he avoided this format and always opted for the one man show that he controlled. TT seemed out of his element and could not take several Bible verses to defend his doctrines on the Bible. If only TT is on the stage and he controls he flow of information one never notices it. I think it is easy to get drawn into his stage presence. I would be interested in finding out if TT wrote his own books or someone else did it for him.

    One thing I noticed with both TT and Coy is that they come from that party boy background. I think the church has to have a special safety net for Pastors like this since they have a tendency to revert to negative behaviors, abusing people, places or things, when under pressure/stress. I don’t think the church can divorce the Pastor’s history from present realities and triggers. Elders should be aware of the signs and hold their feet to the fire when they cross over the line. The safety net also protects the person in the pew from getting sucked into the abuses. Most men with addiction problems tend to revert back when they are at the height of success. It is a danger point because they think they are doing so well that they can handle the old stuff they use to engage in.

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  28. Kay, I totally agree. In fact, I hate to say it, but it’s almost like a “rock star” atmosphere exists in the church where in this case, TT felt the messenger was bigger than the message and acted accordingly. Nonetheless, I’m still puzzled by how these affairs happen. Do they start innocently in “counseling sessions”, or do some women become fascinated / drawn into the mega church celebrity culture and act like some type of gospel groupie?

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  29. Pingback: Linkathon! | PhoenixPreacher

  30. Great insight, Kay. I think being BG grandson also gave him more of a pass that pro -longed his career. He is a hollow man. There is no there, there. All hat and no cattle as John Wayne would say.

    Sadly, that sort of show biz approach is wildly popular in cult of personality cultures like we are in now.

    Do you think an uncharismatic short fat bald man could become president without some sort of shock jock shtick? Or, an ugly woman who is policy centered but no war chest? I seriously doubt it. People love their Kardashian “Christian” celebs who tell them what they want to hear.

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  31. You guys are talking EXACTLY to the gospel gap idea in the last few posts.

    Scripture is full of Truth AND Grace. Notice the AND … or ampersand! Truth without grace is not ALL the truth. And Grace without truth is not really grace. It is a hard and difficult thing to do wisely and in the same proportions as Jesus himself! Kay is right about lopsided… we have lots of “gaps” on both sides today.

    Truth gives us the right position but grace gives us the proper posture toward others that struggle with various things.

    The Gospel of Jesus Christ tells us…
    We are more sinful and weak than we ever cared to admit AND… (TRUTH)
    We are more loved and accepted than we ever dared to hope. (Grace)

    Peace!

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  32. “Celebrianity” — groupies are, in part, about the proximity to power inflating their own sense of identity. How easy then for groupies to become proxies who protect and promote their idol … perpetuating the name and the fame, while others continue to get harmed by their little games.

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  33. I’m hoping one day we will hear how these sexual relationships begin. An affair is mutual consent. There cannot be consent in a sexual relationship when one person is in a position of authority over another.

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  34. Hey look, a bird!

    I feel like I live in neo-Calv central here in Minnesota. Piper people are everywhere! And I find it hard to swallow the language… Believe me — I have tried so hard to “finish” a book of his. 🙂

    Although I have to admit I like Tim Keller more than Piper just because of his phrasology. Position and Posture again.

    What I find sad is TT had issues and multiple broken relationships with the Gospel coalition– people that supposedly shared his same theological leanings. I am betting the long line of broken relationships started long before his stint at Coral Ridge. Something the search committee should have been aware of rather than just being enamored with his “bloodline”.

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  35. “The Gospel of Jesus Christ tells us…
    We are more sinful and weak than we ever cared to admit AND… (TRUTH)”

    I learned from CJ Mahaney that when a long time Christian tells you over and over how sinful and weak they are, it is best to believe them and take appropriate measures of protection. :o)

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  36. “I’ve worked beside a handful of people in the church or the corporate world who I’d guess met the criteria for NPD (or whatever they call it under DSM-5, “antisocial personality disorder”?). Having spent fair time in both, it appears based on my anecdotal experience as if the disorder is more common among church leaders than among any group in the private sector (there was that recent scholarly research out of Canada which put the percentage of NPDs among pastors at something like 25% overall and 40% for those in their 20s or 30s, which is stunning, because the numbers for the general population are very low, a few percent maybe, and dealing with one with NPD essentially means that you’re dealing with someone who simply could not care less about you, perhaps would just as soon slit your throat, so long as they perceived it would benefit them. ”

    You’re describing ASPD. Both that and Narcissistic Personality Disorder reside at a clinical level in 1% of the population. Masterson refers to the NPD as the “inflated false self,” as opposed to the BPD (3-6% of the population, clinically) as the “deflated false self.” pwBPD can also have narcissistic traits without being full blown BPD. At the core of these disorders, which are really oft-disagreed upon and controversial criteria debated hotly during every DSM revision, is self-worship and idolatry. Though there can be some genetic predispositions (anyone who works with or has had more than one kid knows the truth that people come wired differently), it reinforces the concept of being good shepherds as parents. Core abandonment wounds equate with not being loved, Imagine being told as a child that you weren’t wanted by your mother, or being told by your father that he wasn’t sure you were his daughter, in addition to growing up in a household full of violence and neglect, both physical and emotional? At the end of the day, however, having a personality disorder (a man-defined construct, even if solid clinical data supports the definition) is no excuse for sin.

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  37. My understanding of Tullian getting his job at Coral was that the church’s first two choices said no. Keep in mind that Mrs. Kennedy and her daughter were on the pastor search committee and Tullian’s church was not far from Coral. He was not an unknown to Coral people. A few from the search committee started pursuing Tullian without the support of the others, my understandings is that they didn’t know dialog was going on. It blossomed from there. The church already had a culture within the culture where a group of roughly 300 were active in a contemporary service, no robes and no cultural mandate emphasized. Tullian didn’t bring it to the church. The merger was to allow Dr. Kennedy’s established ministries to keep going, they employed a lot of people and in the case of EE it is an international ministry. Doesn’t make sense to disband active, international work for the Lord. Tullian could develop the other side. Seems to me that merger was mismanaged from the start . Tullian had the under 30 crowd and Coral had the resources/facilities. It seemed like a win-win for everyone.

    I think that people in ministry that come from addicted backgrounds have a larger learning curve. They are usually described as a diamond in the rough or given more empathy due to their backgrounds. Sometimes they become the poster child for the Gospel, like look what God can do!! If churches want Pastors like this they must have a plan in place for a Pastor with “special needs”. There are various reasons a person abused people, places and things. It has to be address and dealt with in leadership. A plan of accountability and consequences needs to be spelled out. If broken it needs to be dealt with and not sweep under the rug. I think people that were addicted have a hard time self regulating and the church seems to think now that person is saved so they need nothing else!!! The are healed but it seems to me that healing takes a lifetime for them.

    My personal take is that we offer the Pastor all sorts of helps and counseling after these things but I think the church should pay for the wife’s counseling and the women that were abused by power. We seem to only “love” the pastor back to health in this and leave out all those others that are deeply wounded by the fall out. I am really shocked that Steve Brown, the elders and Tullian had betrayed Tullian’s wife all these years and that they could even look her in the face. She is a member of the body of Christ and I don’t think she was treated with love and respect at all.

    Seems to me that we in the pew really don’t know how these Christian elite live behind closed doors. We don’t know these people on any personal level. We see an image. Para-church groups are falling between the cracks on accountability. I have to wonder if Steve Brown ever brought up the Tullian issue with his board??! Who holds him accountable for his actions as the leader of Key Life? He has conveniently said he was not in a position of authority in the churches in order to get a pass, but he does have a board that governs his para-church group. If the churches have no authority over para-church groups then who does and how does that work? How can we apply scriptures in these cases of para church groups or do they even apply?

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  38. There were some within Coral, who moved on early, that didn’t believe Tullian was a true Christian from the get go. Others that thought he was are now questioning it. Billy Graham had inaugurated Coral in the beginning so this was “Christian Karma” having Tullian.

    Probably at some future point Tullian will say he is a sex addict which gives a further pass. I have a feeling we will get more info on the story as believers unload. A book is in the making to manage the image I think. Everyone loves that Christian “Rocky” story or come back kid. We have to give God that success story!

    In addition to the church dealing with accountability of Para Church organizations I think we need to re-visit this whole book writing deals. I believe it does more harm than good to the Body of Christ. Makes the author a ton of money. If the Pastor is making tons of money off books he becomes quite independent and then who is he accountable to? Does the church monitor his book business that he has made off his church image? I mean these guys can’t make all this money if they didn’t have the church platform that was formulated by donations.

    The Tullian issue opens up a lot to talk about I think. Will the church do the hard thing and dialog??? Are we going to learn anything from this? I appreciate people like Julie Ann that bring different perspectives to the table. I am not sure that only one blog will do much within the body of Christ although she is making great points on other people’s blogs. Most believers have been told we should not talk about it because it deters unbelievers or gives them fodder to diss the Gospel. More ways to keep things secret in the church instead of making the church a safe place for everyone.

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  39. It is odd seeing this thread since I have had interactions with both these men since I attended CCFL and TTs kids attended the CCFL school. I will withhold from saying any more here but JA you can email me.

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  40. Shy,

    I belong to an LCMC church. Lutheran Churches on a mission for Christ. As such, we see Jesus as Messiah and Savior, Triune! My blog is meant more as a thought process as to how the Gospel works as we live out our lives with other sinners. I see my church, currently, as a Church that is emotionally healthy and allows disagreement. At least from my perspective.

    I am 52 (almost 53) and I have my own stories of what JA went through. Not so much from a Church but from individuals that belong to such churches.

    I read this last night from a book called “Reading the Gospels wisely” by Jonathon Pennington. He says “As we conclude our two two chapter discussion of hermeneutics, my final point is that the most important and discriminate aspect of reading Holy scripture is not our method or theory but our posture and our goal”

    Posture and goal! Disagree or agree with that statement…. its one I believe is so true. A CJ Mahaney or TT would continuously beat people over method, theory, and theology and when they got blocked or heard “no” their guard hairs would stand up.

    Lydia, funny! :-). But then again you are semi-pelagian! 🙂

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  41. “Lydia, funny! . But then again you are semi-pelagian! ”

    Let’s us make it our calling to help warn and protect more people from these perpetually sinning pastors who see basic honesty. character and integrity as “works salvation”.

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  42. Lydia, when I belonged to a Church that was Arminian and touting human responsiblity/character/integrity the Pastor got busted for soliciting hookers. The same issue is on both sides of the fence theologically.

    My thoughts are no matter what side of the fence you are on what does it look like to be emotionally mature as a leader. I believe that is the missing ingredient more than a theological one.

    Apologies if I triggered you on something. I was rather enjoying having a difference of opinion. It was not mean to be a poke.

    Either way…. we both know we have different views.

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  43. Maybe once the worn out jean look came on the scene, and it was acceptable to see this casual version of the Pastor, attitudes changed. I remember a respected Pastor once saying from the pulpit that he wanted to be more professionally dressed than anyone who attended. If a physician is dressed for respect, why not a Pastor? I am sure there would be a lot of opposition to what I just wrote, and of course the way someone dresses doesn’t dictate what is in their heart, but I do remember when my Pastor started dressing more casually…something changed in him, and I do think the way you dress sometimes dictates your attitude. IMO there is just too much wooing the young crowd. In my area, I have walked out of many churches because there are teens on stage with strobe lights and electric guitars. Maybe a new generation but it just doesn’t feel right to me. Of course I am insignificant at at,most 60 years old! What’s in a mans heart is not as a result of his dress, but the easy grace movement, the hip, 200.00 jean wearing Pastor, the wooing the young with rock music…something has changed. Anyone agree?

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  44. “Apologies if I triggered you on something. I was rather enjoying having a difference of opinion. It was not mean to be a poke.”

    This took longer than usual. Normally you guys trot this one out earlier.

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  45. I am a straight-line person (the shortest distance between two points). We are all sinners. There is a difference between those that repent and the ones that do not. “To much is given, much is required”. Tullian and Coy were given much, knew what they were doing, willfully practiced their sin, and have yet to show true repentance. Once we call ourselves a “Christian”, like it or not, we ARE all to be judged (evaluated for what we actually, habitually “practice” while in our bodies). “But now I write to you not to associate with any one who bears the name of [Christian] brother, if he is known to be guilty of immorality or greed, or is an idolater-that is, whose soul is devoted to any object that usurps the place of God-or [is] a person with a foul tongue (railing, abusing, reviling, slandering), or is a drunkard, or a swindler or a robber. [No] you must not so much as eat with such a person. What [business] of mine is it and what right have I to judge outsiders? Is it not those inside [the church] upon whom you are to pass disciplinary judgment–passing censuring sentence on them [as the facts require]? Because Coy and Tullian took on the ominous title of “Teachers of God’s Word”, they are under an even greater “judgement” (scrutiny/evaluation). Their responsibilities are covered here: “Not many [of you] should become teachers [self-constituted censors and reprovers of others], my brethren, for you know that we [teachers] will be judged by a higher standard and with greater severity [than other people]. Thus we assume the greater accountability and the more condemnation.” (James 3:1, Amplified) Things are not that complicated. Until there is repentance, we throw the bums out!

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  46. “Lydia, when I belonged to a Church that was Arminian and touting human responsiblity/character/integrity the Pastor got busted for soliciting hookers. The same issue is on both sides of the fence theologically.”

    Arminian is Calvin lite. It is just harder for them to blame the “we are elect worms dualistic theology”. Many have their version of cheap grace.

    This is not about correct doctrine automatically means honest, decent person. It is about doctrine that excuses harm done to others. Lacks personal responsibilty. Even by those who make a living telling people who Jesus is. Strange.

    But thanks for letting me know your views on your personal responsibility.

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  47. I think Shy said it well and her discussion on personal responsibility. Direct from scripture: Romans 6, James, etc. Well said!

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  48. Centrality, you keep using the word “we” as in “we believe” and speaking of churches and theological positions. What do YOU believe? Who is Jesus Christ and what has he done for us?

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  49. Shy, I see Jesus as a personal savior that died and rose 3 days later for MY sins. The scripture I was reading this morning is timely, actually.

    2 Corinthians 5:17-21

    17 Therefore if anyone is in Christ, [a]he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. 18 Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and [b]He has [c]committed to us the word of reconciliation.

    20 Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. 21 He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

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  50. Shy, not going to comment any more here. On my BLOG under vision statement says more and search for “identity” in Christ and some of my older posts.

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  51. The attorney general and IRS should look at financials of these ex-pastors like Coy and Tchividjian because abuse of money and greed go along with lies and sex. And look at church financials too.

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  52. In reply to “Debbie’s” personal story: I have not read any of the comments, so I have no idea if anyone has already pointed this out, but I’d like to state the obvious. Pastors TT and Coy did not ” get off scot-free”. Christ paid a real sacrifice for their grievous sins! Yes, they hurt a ton of people, most especially their own loved ones. But if we truly believe Jesus, then he covered it all – many times over; in fact, infinitely so!

    The question we have to ask ourselves is was Christ’s payment enough or not? Their sins are ultimately against God. We may feel spiritually abused. Are we willing to carry our spiritually-abused-crosses for TT and Bob Coy and forgive them, and genuinely love them, and pray for them? I’m not talking about approving of them now, or saying “oh it’s okay, as long as you don’t do it again,” or “well he confessed, all is well.” No. Nothing of the sort. All is not okay.

    However, that does not mean that all can not be forgiven, and abusive people loved and forgiven – even as they’re driving nails through our hands into a cross. But this kind of love can only come from our Holy Loving God because He first loved us!

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  53. Forgiven yes..empowered no. Both men have been divorced by their wives. It is in the public records in Florida. I think they are disqualified from the pulpit. The best thing for all concerned would be for them to get a secular job, or live off the money they already have. Both were paid 6 figure salaries from what I have read. Tullian already comes from a wealthy family so doubt he really has to work. I have no idea what settlement the wives got, or if they get monthly support payments for the kids.

    I think it is telling that their wives opted out of the marriage even after both men received counseling after their confessions. Both women have taken the high road and kept their mouths shut about the whole thing. I don’t know if Coy has said anything about his wife, but Tullian threw his wife under the bus publicly by going to the secular newspaper to tell the world she cheated on him and that was the reason he cheated on her. I guess he didn’t care that his kids might be harmed by this action.

    I believe there are serious character flaws that have been shown through this. I think it speaks volumes about how church leadership runs churches and how they cover up things from members that have a right to know. Many churches are worse than what the world dishes out in my opinion. God gives the believer the authority to judge other believers by the standards in the Bible. There are consequences to actions and Pastors are not above all that. Yes. They are forgiven so they need to be ministered to if they are open to it, but churches/members should not empower anyone like this.

    Seems like very few people care about the blood, sweat, tears and money that Christian members poured into these ministries nor do they care that the wives, and children, were lied to by the husband and the church leadership. How in the world can an elder look the Pastor’s wife in the eye every Sunday while he knows her husband is having an affair? What kind of man is that? This is more like a Christian soap opera than anything else. I am not giving my tithe to the church so the Pastor can have affairs. Sorry. The Pastor is suppose to feed the flock and that is why I support him. If he wants to do something other than the latter then he needs to get out of this line of work. What is so hard to understand about that?

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  54. “In reply to “Debbie’s” personal story: I have not read any of the comments, so I have no idea if anyone has already pointed this out, but I’d like to state the obvious. Pastors TT and Coy did not ” get off scot-free”. Christ paid a real sacrifice for their grievous sins! Yes, they hurt a ton of people, most especially their own loved ones. But if we truly believe Jesus, then he covered it all – many times over; in fact, infinitely so!”

    Your religion (antinomianism) is scary for people who don’t practice it. I mean you can mess over people as many times as you want to and you insist they must forgive you because Jesus Paid the price over and over and over no matter what you do or how many times you do it or for how long.

    The problem with this religion is you have no control over other people. You can shame them that their forgiveness does not include total trust. Or that their forgiveness includes a divorce and for the molesters who love this religion it might include prison.

    The price Jesus Paid on the cross was also for New Life. Not so people could practice and perfect sin and then demand forgiveness.

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  55. In 1982 I had a unquie experience and began to walk with God . He had showed me he was alive and real . I’d grown up and attended a brethren full gospel church , until I was 12 when I realized I was being bribed to get kids to go to Sunday school . I was saved many times as I knew when I died I was going to hell because I kept on being a brat . Jesus was in heaven wAtching me … My parents never went to church but we were picked up by these good people in a bus every Sunday and parents could have a sleep in …I was saved a couple more times but it wouldn’t last as I didn’t know the power of God until 1982. I loved my pastor and my church , I stuck with it even when some elders took the church away from him in the middle of the service and shocked some of the congregation . They had called me the night before to pray and told me he was involved with a member of the church . Several months before at lunch with him and several people I looked at her and him and the Holy Spirit revealed it to me . I was confused as I hadn’t walked with God long . I asked a friend who was like a spiritual mother to me and close to him , she said he is the most faithful man out , even tho he had separated from his wife just a little while before .
    The whole thing was a disaster . The woman left her marriage married him they divorced he died a young man . I still loved him he represented God to me . The church folded after he’d gone tho several tried to keep it together …. Lot of people were following him not God .
    I recovered and stuck with the church , the new people were precious , loved us dearly .. And laid things on us that we’re not of God . They were sincere , they thought they could change us but only God can do that …we dwindled to about 25 people and it was time to end it … We moved out of state . It’s been a long hard road , caught up the Charismatic Movement losing sight of God out of fear and too scared to even buy a lotto ticket as the pastor said if I see any of you buying a ticket look out , alcahol forget it ….. I struggled for years , lost my sense of trust in God though I held on to a form of godliness there was no power in my life , my trust was in others prayers and my marriage of over 40 years came to a end by my choosing . You can only fight battles in the flesh for so long .
    I lost due to myself what I could of had and what God intended … However he is moving again in my life and perhaps I’ve come full circle and will start again …I have not yet found a church that I can feel the power of God move , in a few years and I long for that ….

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  56. I had attended Calvary Chapel and heard Bob Coy many times. My brother was not a believer and started to attend. First he had a private meeting with Bob, my brother gave his life to the Lord. We are Jewish, hard enough to break the wall between us and Yeshua, Jesus, but God did it! I was so happy my brother believed, it was a dream! My brother respected Bob and listened to him all the time, radio in the car, at home and at the church. They even attended marriage seminars at the church. Then his scandal. Wow, what a shame.
    The next year, very close Jewish friends and the husband a mentor towards my brother, with a Jewish ministry and working for a very well known Jewish ministry, He ended up in trouble and eventually in prison for sexual abuse of his girls! OMG! I am so angry. I love his wife, we have been close for 20 years. But what to do about him? He was like a brother to me and a mentor for my brother. How do I relate to them anymore? My brother won’t even go there, to the issue of what he did to his family, girls, friends and those who supported him. We can’t talk about it. So awful…. Still praying how to deal with it, aware that we are ALL sinners saved by the grace of God
    Amy

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  57. Bob Coy has left Tennessee and returned to South Florida, where in April he took sole ownership of a beach condo that he had owned with his former wife, Diane.

    Tullian has remarried and is living in Texas.

    Both abusers look to be “moving on.” Neither has publicly renounced his adulterous sin, at least that I know of.

    God sees and knows, and the Judge of all the earth will do right.

    Like

  58. I’m not sure if this is the place to respond to Debbie…but I really want her to know that we are going to pray for her. My husband and I were members at Calvary Chapel when Pastor Bob resigned and just like many others at CR, we were blown away…and angry too. I do want to encourage you though that your God knows your pain, hurt and discouragement and He is always able. If He holds the whole world in the palm of His hands then He’s got control of all of our disappointments and will heal the broken-hearted. Let’s continue to pray for these fallen ministers and their families and for their full restoration. Because that’s what we’re called to do as the body of Christ. I love you Debbie and may God continue to bless you as you worship.

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  59. Erica L., thank you for your post. I am posting as “Donner” now. Your words brought comfort to me as I am watching Tullian’s re-emergence on the scene. God sees and knows. Take care and God bless you both.

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  60. J. Smith,

    Another article about Tullian; yep, more propagandist rubbish. Giggles, and by a “leadership coach” to boot. Hilarious stuff.

    Liked by 2 people

  61. and by a “leadership coach” to boot.

    Oh great. Wait! That’s the expastors guy I think? So, of course he’s a ok with it. Their entire goal is to restore men who have proven themselves untrustworthy to ministry.

    Like

  62. @Lea,

    Yup, that’s the one, of course. I call ’em accomplices (by association, by condoning, by promoting, by trying to guilt-trip the innocent).

    Like

  63. Dear Diane,

    Seeking to restore a brother (or sister) to healthy fellowship? I’m all for it. Seeking to restore an abusive minister who has betrayed his professed calling? Not too eager.

    Liked by 2 people

  64. Actually , that comment was meant to meant to be pulled as I cancelled it , I was going to rephrase what I said and hadn’t gotten back to . Error on their publishing as I did cancel it

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  65. dianejbrewer,
    It would be the very best for all involved if TT did not go back into the professional public ministry as he chose to disqualify himself due to his own thoughts/actions, his own behavioral patterns. No one made him sin, he chose that life for himself. I too, have sinned over and over again and fallen short of the Glory of God. And too, as the Apostle Paul chose to have a job to support himself so the mammon collected for the ministry of Jesus, the Christ could be redistributed to the poor, the widows, the sick and needy amongst the people of that day, so too, the pastorate was never meant to be a professional living where the clergy preyed upon the ekklesia/called out ones for a salary and living expenses. All of that was created by man, for man, apart from Jesus.

    The best counsel for Tullian is to go out a get a real job to support his family and lead a quiet life living for our LORD Jesus, the Christ. His name and His WAY was NEVER meant to use for earning money as a living like we see today. Tullian is a hireling.

    Not my words, but God’s Words.

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  66. Money is a huge problem in the church these days. I agree.

    I am not sure why ExPastors keeps beating a dead horse. The whole article was bizarre in my opinion. Did I really have to know he cried in front of his daughter? I wondered if this guy, or ExPastors, ever cries for those in the pew? Did I really have to be privy to his therapy session? Did the therapist know about the many victims in this case? What would he tell those people if they were in the same room? The details in that piece kinda turned me off to be honest. I sensed it as manipulative and one sided. Was pure emotion and no scripture was used to justify the reason to have TT on their site. Is this guy gearing up for another piece to be on ExPastors?

    I also sense that ExPastors really want Tullian to win because then they all win. There is this collective mindset of a brotherhood that needs to have a hero among their ranks. Someone that made it back to the pulpit so they can all point to that guy as their example of what they all can accomplish. They can use the Tullian template to accomplish it.

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  67. Pingback: Resource Bibliography on System Issues Related to the Tullian Tchividjian Situation | Spiritual Sounding Board

  68. Hi Julie Anne. I read your blog faithfully and appreciate all you do. I have a question for a person who recently posted. How do I submit that? Should i pass my question to you first and you forward it to her? It’s not a public issue, so I wasn’t sure. Thank you so much

    Like

  69. When Pastor Bob fell, I admit that it was a very hurtful and painful experience. But I never looked at Pastor Bob in a way that most people did who left Calvary Chapel. One thing I learned from being a student of the word is Jesus should be the example I follow and not a Pastor. Man will fail us from time to time but God never will. With that in mind I have continued to attend Calvary because as one of the assistant Pastor’s said, Jesus is the Ultimate Pastor and Founder of the church and that what gives me hope. I will continue my prayer for both fallen Pastor’s and their families.

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  70. I am grateful that someone would be willing to step out in faith. If Jesus was here I do believe that He would remind us who we war against? Not against flesh & blood, but against Satan & his lies to keep families in bondage to sin. Where is the support of our churches to fight the battle of sexual sin, that only Satan can bring. Our churches need to come together to bring recovery to the families who battle this sin. My family has had incest for generations & just like any other addiction to sin that Satan brings to us, we need help to be restored to right thinking & Godly ways. My families have shown up for church for generations & the sexual sins do not stop. But as I chose to leave my family & so did my husband, we both noticed that we have no help from the church to heal from incest & relearn right thinking & find forgiveness. And as for the truth of who we are in christ? If God said we are all forgiven & forgivable, then where is our help to overcome the sins of the enemy. Who really is the church? Does the church get to pick through the woman at the well or the woman that they dragged through the streets? I can say this for myself, I was never loved by the sex addicts in my home. They can’t love you. They love sex, so you are taught to believe that you are only worth sex. This was taught to both my husband & I. Where is our church in this. We both continue to heal & get help, but sadly it is not the churches that are helping us. We feel more like outcasts, & we were only 3 & 4 years old when this horrible sinfulness started for us. You can’t know who you are in Christ or believe it when the church does not even believe it. We never asked to be sexually abused. God chose our homes for us & planned for this sin to stop. Now where are our churches to help everyone to end this sin that Satan has brought on our families. I truly hope someone will think on this. How do we bring anyone else into the church when there Is no help, & tell them God loves us all ,& wants to help us all to heal! The church dies not even back us up. Jesus said He loved ALL of His little children not some. Help us to stop Satan from winning this war of lies & keeping families out of the church who are seeking help. Bring a light into the window of many who have lost hope & cut them selves & do other addictions to kill the pain & have NO hope in being loved or healed from being secually abused or their family being run by Satan! I pray someone will read this & want to own the doors of their church to help people like us who were innocent children & need a loving church to help to be restored to right thinking & learn to love ourselves because God loves us & not feel rejected by churches or shamed by what Satan brought into our families generations ago! Please be a light in the window for the Love of God that is in Christ Jesus & help us in our battle against Satan to kill our families with sexual addictions. God Bless you all who have read this. There are many hurting & no church to go. God Bless you all!

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  71. You who are spiritual restore such a one with a Spirit of humility and gentleness lest ye find yourself in sin. All has to be handled in spiritual maturity with humilty but with obvious discipline. Many times Elders do not have plurality of leadership and are not truly being subject to one another. Not saying these are the cases here however Plurality of leadership requires plurality of accountabily to each other. wonder if they meet with each other (Elders) in there homes or on a personable level to pray for each other etc…

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  72. Debbie I read you concerns and comments and I ask you this question, have you ever sinned. I know that what they both did was wrong and only because they were pastors such matters are in the light. Please do not misunderstand me, I totally agree that this is wrong, but how many lives have been saved by God using these two men. I remember Bob back behind Albertsons. Today a mega church, pray for them, pray that the Lord has mercy, pray that God will heal those who were affected. Your voice here seems negative, let’s change that to a positive. Know that God is still in control. Know that those two men are also God’s children. Know that they need the love of God not man in their life. As a pastor child who has made a lot of mistakes in my life, I thank God for his mercy. I am not perfect and as a pastors child people think that we cannot make a mistake. Believe me they feel the lost of there family, they know the pain they have caused them. They don’t need a reminder daily. They need God.

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  73. I remember when Bob Coy was a teacher and a home fellowship leader at Calvary Las Vegas and something I noticed throughout the years as I look back is Calvary Chapel under the leadership of Pat Walsh didn’t really appoint people that were train for leadership, they only appointed the people that seem to touch the people in ways that weren’t really according to scripture. For the scripture says that if a man desires a position of leadership, he must first be tested. None of them were really tested, and it seems like all of them seem to hold to a teaching that wasn’t filled: not with the truth, but filled with how to make both people feel good. However, this isn’t what the Bible teaches.

    The Bible teaches that we must grow in sound Doctrine and the teachings of the word of God. And when you do this, people will be growing their faith that is solid. And when you don’t, you form a congregation that is built on feelings instead of a relationship because it’s not who you know it’s who you’re known.

    But according to scripture, I love Bob Coy to death. I think he is a very interesting person; however, that love doesn’t cover that I look at him as somebody who wasn’t prepared to be a leader in a church – not because he has fallen, but because he really has no true training because scripture must be treated as the last Authority on God’s word. Because god’s word is absolutely true. And when you step outside of all these truths, something always goes wrong. And I hate that for Bob, but I think people should understand that when you put a person in the position of a leader, he must be spiritually mature which takes as much time as it does to grow into an adult as a human, because spiritual life is an exact mirror image of physical life.

    We do not grow in 5 years and become high schoolers or college majors, it takes time when we start maturing in Christ. That takes time. Jesus didn’t even start his ministry till he was 30 years old and he was the son of God. If my child had a heart problem, I would not want to take him to a twelfth grader to seek understanding on how to fix it, I would rather take him to a trained physician cardiologist to seek answers for the Cure.

    With that said, I love Bob Coy. I was part of the church when he became a Christian. I saw his rise and I’m sad to say I saw his Fall From Grace as a pastor. If I could speak to him today, I would tell him, “if you are a child of God, repent and continue growing in your faith,” because what matters is that we are obedient to what God has shown us as believers. It is first a personal relationship, and then that personal relationship will grow to everything else.

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  74. You (Debbie) are a self righteous women. Who do you think you are to condemn anyone. Read your Bible on forgiveness. I think you’re vemon. Maybe you my be using unresolved childhood issues and using these Pastors sin. And finally its people like you as to why I stay away from Church.

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  75. Markgore,

    I only approved your post to give you an official warning. We do not allow personal attacks here. Next time, you will experience the SSB dog house. Surely you can find a better way to word things without attacking someone! Signed, The Moderator

    Liked by 1 person

  76. Deal with your own husbands deeds before you attack others in the church. Remember the women at the well? I think not. A suggestion try some Repartive Therapy with a Phd or Psyd specilizing with people with anger issues.

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  77. markgore,

    You call Debbie “venom” or “vermin” (I’m not sure what you mean. “Vemon,” according to some sleazy online dictionary, is a mix between a vampire and a demon). Now I’m detecting some unresolved issues…maybe in you. “Gore”? Yup, some clear issues there.

    Liked by 1 person

  78. markgore

    Was wondering…

    When you say…
    “Who do you think you are to “condemn” anyone.”

    Why do you “condemn?”

    Was wondering…

    When you say…
    “Read your Bible on forgiveness.”

    If you, markgore, had read your Bible on forgiveness?
    Before you, decided to comment about forgiveness?
    How would you sound? speak? write?

    To those you think are NOT forgiving?
    And, being “self-righteous?” “condemning?”

    And, having “anger issues?”

    Maybe you could practice on us, sounding? speaking? writing?
    Like someone who is NOT having “anger issues?”
    Like someone who is NOT “condemning?”
    Like someone who is NOT “self-righteous?”

    Maybe you could sound like…
    Like someone who really is forgiving?

    Like

  79. I approved the last comment because it made me LOL.

    Remove me from this site where I voluntarily showed up to just to gripe and accuse people of needing reparative therapy (?)! Oh no! It made me lol too.

    Liked by 3 people

  80. I also feel I received “spiritual abuse” from a church I was attending faithfully for 23 years. The pastor didn’t commit adultery but it seemed like he did with his eyes and the way he would touch certain women including myself. He manipulated the congregation into giving, quiting jobs, schools even kept from moving or buying a home. I can go on and on and on of what I’ve seen there in the last 23 years. I left and was ostracized by people I helped raise there! What did I do so wrong? I left. That’s all they needed. I feel like I still live with the aftermath of simply leaving this “abuse of power” church. I’m glad I’m out but I still am suffering.

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  81. Ha ha! Mark Gore, you need some spelling therapy. I’m dating a guy named Vernon by the way. He never mentioned your name.

    Love these people who rant, “You’re going to Hell for judging me, you XXXX!” Very nonjudgmental and tolerant of them. I’m sure they only say it in Christian love.

    Seems the only sins these personality cult mega-churches cannot forgive are SERIOUS ones. Like when a pastor grows thin on top or his toothpaste quits whitening his toothy grin. Some serious offenses there. 😀

    Like

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