This post is written by Brad/futuristguy.
Unfortunate things afoot with a return to a publishing platform by Tullian Tchividjian at Fortress Press, as endorsed by acquisitions editor Tony Jones. See this post at Spiritual Sounding Board on the press release and related issues.
Former Fortress Press editor David Lott posted a lengthy comment critical of the news on this announced publishing relationship, and how it is out-of-sync with the former reputation and publishing line of the company. Mr. Lott also cross-posted the above comment on his public Facebook page, along with these two later comments with relevant details and further analysis.
Comment #1, things get normalized that shouldn’t be.
Comment #2, clarification about Fortress Minneapolis under separate management.
More background: In 2015-2017, SSB posted extensively regarding Tullian Tchividjian and his reported multiple relationships of sexual misconduct, serial refusal of accountability, and more. Although he’s recently been speaking out on God’s grace in suffering, he has multiple unresolved relational/organizational issues. This book contract with Fortress Press appears to give him unconditional restoration without a track record of repentance plus remediation/repair work to mitigate damages.
Don’t legitimate second chances
require a real track record of repentance first?
Apologies are just words; transformed direction requires action.
One publisher apparently did impose consequences on Tullian Tchividjian’s unresolved interpersonal and institutional issues. Spiritual Sounding Board appealed in 2017 to David C Cook, which published several bestsellers by him. Julie Anne Smith asked them to stop promoting him and his books. (Research shows that several of them were released and/or became bestsellers while he was reportedly in the midst of sexual misconduct. This chart contains a detailed visual timeline.) His titles are now gone from their sales section.
God’s grace truly does liberate. But abuse and misconduct emotionally imprison their victims. If Tullian Tchividjian’s latching onto grace the last few years is genuine, surely he can refrain from spreading that news and rebuilding any public platform until he’s acted responsibly toward specific people he harmed.
This article has been cross-posted at futuristguy’s blog.
16 thoughts on “Tullian Tchividjian and Fortress Press: Don’t Legitimate Second Chances Require a Real Track Record of Repentance First?”
The Bible says you need to show the fruit of repentance. If the analogy in scripture is truly meant to describe our example in life as Christians, then he whole concept of fruit production must be looked at.
Sometimes trees are not mature enough to produce fruit and it takes a few years. Quality of the fruit must be looked at, along withe the tree to make sure it is disease free.
Tullian Tchividjian has not seemed to take an axe to the tree and thrown it into the fire nor has he even had enough time to plant a new tree to produce fruit. Let alone produce fruit of repentance. This guy is still a wolf, he just put on a different colour wool coat… like black.
For those who want to better understand why Tony Jones’ involvement in re-platformizing Tullian Tchividjian is aggravating — though not surprising — there is much history, research, analysis, and resource linkage in this case study on “Diagnosing the Emergent Movement.”
Tony Jones’ situation is prominent in the Emergent Village industrial complex and its successor organizations, events, and publishing associations.
LikeLiked by 1 person
Here is the comment I posted at his church’s website, beneath the video of Tullian speaking. The comment hasn’t “appeared” yet, so I’m hoping it’s just in moderation for the moment. Even so, here it is:
Why are you giving this man a platform? Is there not overwhelming evidence that he is unfit for pulpit ministry? Aren’t hundreds of ruined lives from a church split, multiple affairs, deceit and lying manipulation of numerous Florida pastors, loss of pastoral credentials from his denomination, his refusal to adhere to his denomination’s plan for restoration, abandonment and divorce of his wife, great trauma perpetrated on his children, and then marrying one of the women with whom he had an affair (whom you now have on staff!) enough? Not to mention the many pastors and religious leaders who wrote an open and public letter calling him to repent and describing their grave concern for his immortal soul. Is this not sufficient for you to “reject a factious man after he has rejected two or three warnings” from having oversight of your congregation?
He can be restored to fellowship. He need not be an outcast. But any type of pulpit ministry is out of the question. Let him humble himself under the mighty hand of God, that he may be exalted in due season.
LikeLiked by 2 people
I’m on the fence on this… On the one hand, I agree with you. On the other, I don’t presume to be God so I don’t really know his heart… Maybe he is fit to be published. Maybe he gains a track record down the road and then lapses into the same behavior.
I don’t know
He’s not fit to be published. You’ll see why soon.
Not if you’re a CELEBRITY.
P.S. Every time I see one of those Official CELEBRITY portrait shots of Tee Tee like at the top of this post, I have to stop myself from putting a fist through the screen. That’s how bad a gut reaction I have to this guy and his image machine.
LikeLiked by 1 person
Tee Tee??? 😂😂
Someone — I forget who — came up with that moniker for Tullian T.
OK it took me a while to figure this out (gonna blame my summer cold), but I figured out why my comment on TT’s church website hasn’t posted. Pure speculation here, but perhaps their new Communications Director has something to do with it?
LikeLiked by 1 person
Although it pains me to say this, I wanted to comment because I have the unique perspective in that my dad is a lot like TT.
He’s had numerous affairs over the years, the most recent of which eventually resulted in him divorcing my mom and marrying his mistress. My dad always attended church throughout his affair and divorce, and now he and his wife attend (a different) church together.
I love my dad very much, but I struggle with the following questions: Is it possible for my dad to have truly repented of his affair and then gone on to marry his affair partner? Wouldn’t true repentance meant he turned away from the affair and recommitted to his first wife? Is his current marriage even Biblical?
Ultimately it is not for me to judge my dad. But the question of my dad being in a pastoral position in a church? Absolutely not!
I suspect you know the answer to your question. It must be a tough pill to swallow, though, especially when it’s your own father. I’m so sorry!