Saturday, May 24, 2008

Why Are So Many Christians Attacking Dr. Robert Morey?

This is a very good question to consider, after all aren't there more important things to do? There is a need to evangelize the cults and world religions for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ. So what would incite people to put so much time and energy in denouncing a man of God? I would like to explore this question briefly. It could be a sign of Dr. Bob's faithfulness to God, Jesus said that His followers would be persecuted for His name's sake. That is a simple and direct answer to the question, is it not? But is it the only possibility? Is it possible that Dr. Bob is guilty of wrong doing? How can we know? These are also important questions to consider. We all know that Dr. Bob is a recognized Christian scholar who has learned from men like Van Till, Clark, Adams, Walter Martin, Schaeffer and others. (It is not within the scope of this blog article to consider his theology and philosophy but to deal with the subject in question). Knowing his great commitment to the things of God, why would anyone think that Dr. Bob would knowingly wrong another Christian? Sure, Dr. Bob has a personality that rubs many people the wrong way, but nobody's perfect. That is no reason to denounce him as a liar and a slanderer is it?

"The first to plead his case seems right, Until another comes and examines him." (Proverbs 18:17) Scripture clearly teaches us that there are two sides to every story, and to restrict ourselves to one side is not only unwise, but morally wrong. If you are someone who attends "Faith Community Church" (FCC) or is a fan of the ministry of "Faith Defenders" (FD), don't you have the moral responsibility to hear the other side of the story? Let us ask a question. If you meet someone who wants to go into business or ministry with you, wouldn't you want a few references from those who have worked with him in the past? Supposing you find that many of the people that you contact don't know each other in some cases, but all give the exact same description of his dishonest and immoral behavior? Would you ignore it and proceed to work with him after being warned? Bare in mind that Paul said "he must have a good reputation with those outside the church, so that he will not fall into reproach and the snare of the devil." (1Timothy 3:7) We are all sinners and are subject to quarrels within the body of Christ. Obviously just because Dr. Bob has had a falling out with some people could mean that Dr. Bob has been wronged by others. Or perhaps there have been serious misunderstandings?

"Do not receive an accusation against an elder except on the basis of two or three witnesses." (1Timothy 5:19) Scripture teaches us that we should take into account the testimony of witnesses in making these decisions. "But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good" (1Thessalonians 5:21). We are to examine evidence very carefully before we make a commitment to anything or anyone, no matter what the cost. It is this that should be focused on in discussing the issues of the current Dr. Bob controversy. Here are some facts that should be taken into account:

1. Dr. Bob has had two church splits at FCC within less than a year and a half. There have been broken friendships and spirits as a result of these church splits.

2. There is a multitude of witnesses that give the same descriptions of Dr. Bob's immoral and abusive behavior over at least the past 15 years. People that have worked side by side in ministry with Dr. Bob. (Many of which don't know each other).

3. The testimony of witnesses is documented in this blog, Joel's blog, bobmorey.com, and several other places. Gadfly J has provided us with a section entitled "Important Robert A. Morey Links..." With a network of links dealing with the witness testimony.

4. Specifically, lieutenantcolumbo has provided us with the testimony of several witnesses that dealt with Dr. Bob in the 1990s. The site has been updated with new labels that explain what each mp3 covers. The paper documentations regarding Dr. Bob's dealings with the "Research and Education Foundation" (REF) referenced are available to investigate.
http://www.putfile.com/lieutenantcolumbo

There is one more very important and crucial question to consider. If Dr. Bob is guilty of wrong doing, who can hold him accountable? He is not subject to any ecclesiastical authority at his church? One cannot say that he is held accountable by the church members, being that whenever there is conflict with Dr. Bob, people leave to find another church. I would urge attention to the fact that though Dr. Bob, as brilliant a man as he may be, should not be held to a different standard than other Christian leaders. It is crucial that we continue to preach the word to a lost and dying world, but this does not mean we should allow Christians to sin against Christians. This article is written out of concern for the spiritual well being of those who place him as a mentor and spiritual father. I'd like to thank gadfly j for allowing me to share some of my thoughts on this blog.

With Christian love,
lieutenantcolumbo

7 comments:

anX-FCC said...

as a point of clarity, and maybe I'm in error, but am not aware of anyone in the Christian academic community that considers dr. morey a scholar. i think what people have been pointing out in the blogs is that the label "biblical scholar" is a self-proclaimed title by morey himself and his staff.

NOT_A_moreyite said...

L. Columbo,

Thanks for the perspective. Just to add, the dilemna of having a head elder (and this is not directed at dr. morey but applies to any situation where you have a corrupt elder as the head of the church, with no other elders to hold one accountable), is something few people realize, that is exactly the problem you have when the pastor is the lone head elder. A pastor friend shared the following with me once.

He said it is vital that when a board hires a pastor, they hire a man of high integrity who loves God and obeys Him. If not, an unscrupulous pastor can use the Scripture to manipulate people when whistleblowers learn of his evil schemes or bad doctrine for example. And he pointed out that if there are no elders at the church, it can be an even worse situation as it’s almost impossible to hold the pastor accountable.

e.g. Let’s say whistleblowers have already exposed some things about a corrupt pastor at a church in Missouri. Let’s say that one of the families is scared to leave the church because they put money into the pastor’s limited partnership to help finance the church. They might end up leaving very quietly so as not to endanger their investment return. But others might not find out about things they may know about the church' and pastor's abuses that need to be known and dealt with.

Others may also have left quietly, figuring that if you leave quietly (even though you know of church/pastor abuses) you have a "supposed friend in the pastor." In fear, they might feel if you leave noisily, “you have an enemy.”

Because of the emphasis the NT places on obeying the elder (the pastor quotes 1Tim 5:19, “Do not receive an accusation against an elder except on the basis of two or three witnesses”), people are told they cannot hear about any alleged abuses the pastor may have committed. However, the pastor usually forgets to quote Matt. 18 where it says those in the know are to tell others and warn people of dangerous persons (assuming they have refused to repent per Matt. 18), and Ephes. 5:11 where it says to expose darkness, even if found in the church). He forgets to quote these because the plan of a corrupt pastor is to have the sheep blindly believe whatever he tells them and to not question his abusive practices- just like the cults do.

These can be difficult situations to expose to the blind, loyal sheep still at the church as unscrupulous pastors will use the Scriptures on obeying the elder to manipulate them. This pastor said that unless you have PICTURES of the pastor literally “caught in the act,” people will side with the pastor 95% of the time since he makes himself this lone head elder (by design). In some situations with corrupt pastors, when no one has “pictures or proofs,” the pastor in knowing this, is usually full of arrogance when confronted by people about abuses (because he knows he won't be held accountable -in his mind).

Now if this was a business, if a person exposes someone like some of these corrupt pastors, the law would swoop down on the business for it's shady dealings. But with churches, the law gives churches a lot of leeway to do whatever they want. And clever pastors can manipulate Scripture and the sheep to get away with things that others in outside churches would clearly see as unchristian and wrong.

By going on the attack against anyone whose left or anyone there who tells the truth about his various shenanigans, he will discredit them, saying things like, “they are ill,” “let's pray for him, he's a nutcase,” “he's lying about me…” And the sheep will believe it and turn on the whistleblower. Just look at all the cults. People leave them all the time after learning the truth, yet they survive because of their well-documented tactics they practice. These pastors likely will survive because they know how to use cult tactics in containing the damage done by whistleblowers.

This is why it's VERY important that a church board hire an honest senior pastor, because an unscrupulous one will manipulate the Scripture to do mind control on the sheep, attacking anyone who challenges him. Joel’s blog has an article (HOW ABUSIVE MINISTRIES DEFEND THEMSELVES by Philip Rosenthal
25 Jan 2006. Part 1 of RMorey Abuses ) that discusses church abuses and GadlysJ blog has the Diotrephes Syndrom article http://saintaugustinian.blogspot.com/search?updated-min=2006-01-01T00%3A00%3A00-08%3A00&updated-max=2007-01-01T00%3A00%3A00-08%3A00&max-results=3 that points out tactics abusive pastors engage in or utilize in attacking the sheep who are wise to them.

Let’s say fcc2 goes to the Sunday service and the pastor attacks a x-fcc whistleblower who left. Then fcc2 gets up and yells, "I've known the truth since day one, and I can tell you that x-fcc whistleblower told the truth and that this pastor is a deceiver who has lied about this whole thing. He slandered from the pulpit x-fcc whistleblower. Why can't you people wake up and see what's going on?"

The pastor would likely say something like, "Oh poor fcc2. He's been very sick physically for a long time and it's affecting his mind now. All those medications you know. Let's all gather together and pray for him right now...." Then many at the church would jump on the bandwagon and say that poor fcc2 is a nutcase, just like they are gossiping, slandering about the other x-fcc whistleblowers who left.

So as one can see, these pastors in these situations can get away with abusive behavior sometimes for quite a while. Elsewhere on Joel’s blog are links to cult tactics that abusive pastor use masterfully in manipulating the sheep. Hope this is helpful to some.

Joel Hughes said...

Nice work Lt. Columbo and all the others Gadfly. I would like to add two comments.

First, I think it is safe to say that there have been three mini-splits at FCC and not two. The first wave happened with the Villigrans (and all who left during that time). The second wave happened when Morey lied about and slandered Clark from the pulpit (and all who left that time). The third happened most recently when Morey again lied and slandered Tom and James (and then all those who left.

Second, I pretty much agree with the first comment here by anx-fcc. In my experience and reading within the Christian academic community, most look down upon Morey. I have some very interesting emails from top scholars regarding him and I will make them known when the time is right. But most of the truly scholarly community has either (1) not heard of him; (2) does not respect him much. Most of the hype about him being a great scholar comes from himself when he writes his own PR stuff on the back of his books, tapes, and JBA journals. I have been reading dozens of them as of late and you will find that he is a "leading expert" or an "internationally recognized expert" or "one of the most respected Christian apologists in the world" etc. And if you put them all together, which I am doing now, you will discover that Morey is a world leading expert in virtually every feild of thought. But is that reality exist in the world of academia or does it exist more so in his own mind?

fccNOmore said...

along the lines of first comment, where does the information come from that dr. morey studied under Van Til? is this even accurate? It is dr. morey himself who makes the claim he studied under Van Til. People who have checked into this believe that by the time morey came thru Westminster, Van Til was already retired. it's possible robert took a seminar class or something from Van Til, but his professor was John Frame. Thus it is doubtful morey was a Van Til student. Further, those who understand apologetics and have had discussions with morey on the different schools of thought, typically walk away with the feeling that morey really doesn't understand the various schools all that well. he claims to be mr. apologist (claiming to have a dmin in apologetics from Westminster (which he does not) but when engaged in conversation on the topic, people report that his true understanding of bahnsen, van til etc. is lacking.

when morey is going around stating that FCC is not a church, how can anyone take him seriously?

the title of the article talks about "attacking" morey. but aren't people really just setting the facts more in order, getting the record on this guy straightened out in the light of day? it might seem like attacks but it's more like they just setting record on some things straight to clear the smokescreen.

lieutenantcolumbo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joshua said...

Bob has now "ordained" some supposed "elders": http://glennhendrickson.blogspot.com/2008/05/sunday-morning-church-notes-52508.html. This is another tactic he often uses that I already pointed out on Joel's blog. When certain deeds of his are exposed in a widespread manner, he silently makes plans to rectify the complaint in order to be able to point to the new situation when the complaint arises again. Let us remember the pattern:

- Bob read Joel's email to a FCC member about his lies, slander, abuse, etc. He latched onto an off the cuff remark at the end of a sentence at the end of a paragraph where Joel highlights the notion of Bob never having written the book he has been talking about for years and years now. Soon after, we see libelous comments being left about Joel, Tom, and Clark on his blog. The supposed evidence of their "sin" was "them" saying that he is not writing his book. This then prompts him to post on the blog a page or two of error-filled, scribbled notes, supposedly from the book. He hears of objections to his reign, rectifies the particular problem when word gets out in a widespread way, and calls the objectors liars.

- Bob also engaged in this behavior regarding the church funds and his home safe. Bob was taking uncounted cash home twice a week into his own private safe. When some found out about this he attempted to threaten them into silence. Only when word of his shady behavior began to get widespread (over a year later), he supposedly changed this behavior and the money was brought to someone else's safe. He now labels objectors liars who report his shady monetary dealings.

- Now we have the situation of his new "elders". Bob has put off getting elders for years and years. He had many opportunities to ordain qualified individuals but instead drove them away with his gossip, slander, theft, and lies. Now that word has gotten out about his corruption, Bob has decided to counter one of the most glaring objections to his imperial reign by rectifying the problem after the fact. No doubt we will all be called liars now for having ever reported this. Bob will stand in front of his congregation and grandstand about how he has proven us terrorists to be frauds. I just hope those still in attendance have some concept of time and are capable of seeing this cause/effect relationship. You'd have to be blind to not pick up on what he is doing here. I have no doubt that these “elders” are bootlicking yes-men, chosen only because they would seemingly not speak out about his wickedness. The situation hasn’t changed. The birdcage liner has been re-arranged in order to give the appearance of cleanliness when in fact it will probably produce more dirt than ever.

Lenny said...

detective columbo and joshua. this is all good dialogue and good clarifications for the readers -in the posting back and forth the clarifications and perspective develops better for the readers. hopefully fcc attendees, should they take time to read the posts, will understand people are trying to set the record straight on some past and recent issues and to support joel who took a leap and felt the need to speak out in defense of others who got bushwacked by the fcc machine. everyone has better to do with their precious time. hopefully everyone keep praying for fcc attendees, those ex-fcc people, and for robert morey. God still in miracle business. -Rom. 8:28

don't forget to share gospel with those God brings into your path when you can. no one is beyond the gospels reach and we never know who will respond.