My Thoughts Lately

[Today I came out of my lurkerdom to post a comment in the previous thread. After I wrote it, I realized that it might make a good stand-alone post. I've been MIA here for the past several months, partly because I lead a very busy life with many responsibilities, and partly because I just haven't felt that interested in the topic of Sovereign Grace Ministries, at least in the way the discussions have been happening here lately. My comment sort of explains why, and it also gives some insight into where I feel things are heading here. Here goes:]

For the record, I utterly hate it when questions of basic Christian doctrine arise here and then it becomes the general consensus among commenters that no doctrine matters since those teachings were upheld by leaders and churches that ended up being abusive.

Yes, it’s true, churches abuse. It’s true that the churches of Sovereign Grace Ministries have mishandled and mistreated many people through their organization’s own peculiar blend of hyper-authoritarian teachings and pastors-as-mediators with little formal training and zero formal accountability to their congregations. That combination was (and in some cases still is) particularly lethal.

But it’s also true, like it or not, that the Bible gives us some pretty straightforward assertions about Jesus and what we need to believe about Him in order to be viewed by God as “on His side” (and not lost, not condemned to an eternity in hell). I find it really troublesome when the conversation moves from calling out SGM’s peculiar twistedness and abuses of various Christian doctrines to trash-talking the doctrines themselves. I don’t really want any part of an environment where it’s suddenly not OK to hold firmly to certain Bible-based beliefs just because others who held firmly to those beliefs mishandled them and used them as a smokescreen to hide their own self-serving agendas.

I’ve actually been thinking over the past several months that it might be time to close comments here. It remains true that SGM as it has been in its various iterations over the past few decades has been a dysfunctional mess craftily masquerading as “doing church right.” I do not believe the dysfunction will ever be fully addressed until the pastors who were raised up in the dysfunctional system repent of how they came to power and change their church governance structures to officially incorporate input from ordinary members. I do think there will continue to be a need for the free discussion of SGM’s issues until this visible repentance happens. (It’s not enough for a church to merely withdraw from the SGM organization, hold some coffee klatches, slap a new label on itself, and think it has charted a new course. The way almost all pastors came into their leadership positions is still rotten at its core, and until that is addressed and until the root issue of lack of accountability to ordinary members is dealt with, the church will still remain SGM. To put it like the familiar saying, you can take the church out of SGM, but it’s not so easy to take the SGM out of the church.)

But this nonsense of wholesale-condemning everything SGM has ever taught just because SGM taught it has got to stop. Likewise, it is not at all healthy or fruitful for people to build an identity upon having been abused, rather than upon having been redeemed by Jesus Christ. Since the past 6 or 8 months have been something of a “slow news cycle” with respect to SGM’s bigger, more public issues, the conversations here have frequently devolved into something that just, well, makes me tired and (for lack of a better way to put it) feels wrong in my spirit.

My heart still breaks for anyone whose walk with God has been damaged or derailed by spiritual abuse…but at some point, it’s time to stop harping on the abuse and start praising God for who He is and for what He has done and continues to do. My heart still beats faster and I still get angry when I hear about the horrible fruit that comes from the abuse of various doctrines of the faith…but some of those same doctrines are the very foundation of what will still save one’s soul to the utmost.

If this site is becoming a place where people just gather to wallow in their victimhood and sneer at the act of really believing in what the Bible says, then I don’t want any part of it. It’s not good for me, and it’s certainly not good for the people doing the wallowing and the sneering.

I am still of the mind that there is a need for forums where spiritual abuse can be analyzed and challenged. But at the same time, it is not profitable for us as believers to make deconstructing every doctrine a priority over celebrating what we have in the Lord Jesus. If something newsworthy about SGM arises, by all means let’s discuss it. But until then, the general conversations about what we don’t believe – well, I just don’t see those as the point of this site.

2,043 comments to My Thoughts Lately

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  1. Somewhereintime
    August 15th, 2014 at 7:15 pm

    Thank you Grant Layman, John Loftness, CJ Mahaney and all of the other ungodly leaders of Sovereign farce ministries for allowing a pervert to molest children … ALL under your KNOWLEDGE and WATCH!

    ” Cook and his fellow victims, now all grown men, are also upset with former church elders at Covenant Life Church who, investigators say, tried to cover-up Morales’ sexual abuse for decades. Cook tells ABC 7 News their concealment is something they’ll have to live with the rest of their lives.,

  2. Patricia
    August 15th, 2014 at 8:57 pm

    Just because Morales will be behind bars in no way means that children and teens at SGM churches are safe now. The culture and totem pole elites who enabled this abuse to begin with are not to be trusted.

    What amazes me is how C.J. and his cohorts can be accomplices to criminal acts by knowingly allowing them on their watch, and they remain free to roam like pack animals.

    Btw, only an SGM “church” would tape book advertisements to the inside doors of women’s bathroom stalls so they can sell the Mahaney girl books and an Alcorn book on tithing. Yes, you heard that right. Great reading material for sitting on the john. Forget scriptures, who needs that. (pardon the sarcasm)

    Follow the money, honey, all the way to the toilet….

  3. Oswald
    August 15th, 2014 at 10:03 pm

    The way these guys take the ‘law’ into their own hands reminds me of the way Saul did what he thought was best, or better than what God said to do (through Samuel). God directed that ALL were to be killed including animals, but Saul thought it better to keep the animals alive and use them. When asked about this by Samuel, Saul said he did do as instructed, to which Samuel said,,,’so, what is the bleating of sheep that I hear’? Then Samuel did the job himself.
    God saw that Morales was still abusing and made a way for the truth to be known and justice to be done, regardless of who, among leadership would be found to be wrong. God did the job Himself. God will not be mocked and misrepresented.
    Keep praying for God to have His way in our churches, our homes and in our country and world.
    Oh Lord, let your kingdom come, let your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

  4. Somewhereintime
    August 16th, 2014 at 11:51 am

    I read this on a site that was talking about politicians. CJ for Congress!!!

    “Don’t underestimate the level of spite psychopaths will rise to when they are about to be dethroned.”

  5. Foot
    August 16th, 2014 at 3:25 pm

    P #2002

    When it come$ to PDI/$GM, one mu$t flu$h twice or more to make $ure all wa$te matter I$ completely gone. Ju$t $aying…! $end PDI/$GM down the Porcelain $hooter (i.e. toilet) on a 1 way trip where their enabling-fellow$hip will be complete (Psalm 69:22).

  6. Steve240
    August 17th, 2014 at 7:35 am

    Somewhereintime said:

    “Don’t underestimate the level of spite psychopaths will rise to when they are about to be dethroned.”

    Good quote.

    As I have shared before, it sure seems that Mahaney fits the profile of a sociopath as descirbed in the book “The Sociopath Next Door.”

    Some examples of what C.J. might or has already done:

    - Blackmailed other leaders within SGM (just like he did to Larry) to keep them quiet.
    - Lies about knowing about Morales and his molesting multiple boys at CLC and calling to not report it.

    I am sure what I mention is just the beginning.

  7. Steve240
    August 17th, 2014 at 10:14 am

    Looks like Mars Hill had to cancel their Resurgence Conference due to all that is coming out about Driscoll:

    One reason for cancellation is speakers refusing to appear with Driscoll. A shame that this wasn’t the case with Mahaney.

  8. BoughtTheField
    August 17th, 2014 at 1:15 pm

    Brent Detwiler just posted again about CLC and the alleged 20 year coverup of sexual abuse. Apparently he will be releasing more evidence in the next few weeks that will answer questions about CJ’s and other pastors’ involvement.

  9. 5yearsinPDI
    August 17th, 2014 at 2:28 pm

    What Did the Covenant Life Pastors Know about Morales & When Did They Know It?

    DateSunday, August 17, 2014 at 9:00AM
    In a few weeks, I’ll be publishing a work answering that question and many other questions concerning the criminal conspiracy to protect sexual predators that was headed up by C.J. Mahaney at Covenant Life Church in Gaithersburg, MD. The members of Covenant Life deserve answers but they have received none. For nearly two years, their pastors have refused to answer their questions.

    If Brent says he is going to answer the question about both Morales and “many other questions”- which we can assume include at least some if not all the various Plaintiffs in the lawsuit- it does imply that he has gotten his hands on some emails or letters or first hand testimonies that will reveal the truth. I guess this gives CLC, SGM, CJM, and anybody guilty a few weeks to come clean or prepare their denials or look for a new job…or stir up more kool aid.

    It is possible Brent will be speculative, but given that he has become the guy who gets the leaked information, we can guess there are some new facts to come. I talked to somebody a couple months ago who told me how wonderful their early 20′s child’s SGM church was, and how wonderful it is to be discipled there. ( it has been under a kool aid regional leader). I pity these kids.

    Kris, might be worth a new thread when it is published.

  10. GALATIANS 101
    August 17th, 2014 at 4:01 pm

    Do you know the name of anyone in SGM that fits the “qualifications” defined in this ChrismaMews Article regarding Mark Driscoll ?

  11. Persona
    August 17th, 2014 at 4:18 pm

    I wonder if Brent researched how much the investigation of Morales in 2009, played into the decision of Mahaney to flee?

    And, how much did the Morales case, underlie the resignation of Josh Harris’s from the governing board of SGM?

    Also, how much did the future Morales testimony play into the decision for Layman to break with Mahaney?

    My hunch is that Mahaney was well aware of the Morales investigation before the events surrounding the church split. And, he knew that he had done far worse things over the years, than coerce fellow pastors, like Tomczak. I believe he knew once the Morales case hit the media, he’d be in a lot more hot water than offending the Tomczaks.

  12. Former CLC'er
    August 17th, 2014 at 8:57 pm

    I have a question for everyone who used to go to CLC. I posted this on The Wartburg Watch and got an incredulous response. Does anyone else remember the times C.J. said that there would be a special section in heaven where all of us would be together? That he wanted to hang out with the church members specifically?

  13. Lover of CLC
    August 17th, 2014 at 10:07 pm

    FormerCLCer 2012–The thing I remember what Mahaney saying is that he will eventually go to the back where he belongs. I used to think what a humble man he is. Now I am not sure why he would say it. I could guess but I don’t know for sure.

  14. Steve240
    August 18th, 2014 at 6:12 am

    Do you know the name of anyone in SGM that fits the “qualifications” defined in this ChrismaMews Article regarding Mark Driscoll ?

    Reviewing the 5 points, I can see how Mahaney fits a this criteria though the article was about Driscoll

    1. Little or No Accountability CHECK
    2. Spiritual Elitism CHECK
    3. An Oppressive Atmosphere CHECK
    4. Angry Domination CHECK
    5. A Low View of Women CHECK

    The person who wrote that article (Lee Grady) was involved with Maranatha Ministries and saw a first hand example in Bob Weiner of the above. A shame that groups haven’t learned by a number of bad examples. I am sure Bill Gothard is another example of what Lee Grady wrote about.

  15. Somewhereintime
    August 18th, 2014 at 9:04 am

    Former CLC’er #2012

    I didn’t hear that one, but I could easily imagine him saying so. His views of himself and Sov Farce Ministries are sooooo unbiblical it is an embarressment to Christianity.

    Looking at SGM now, it’s already on a trajectory towards implosion. It’s now only a matter of time. Your local SGM pastor will still say there is hope, but there is NO HOPE in the Kingdom of God where there is no repentence.

  16. Persona
    August 18th, 2014 at 6:49 pm


    I don’t remember CJ saying that but, a member of my family recalls CJ alluding to CLC members all worshiping God together in Heaven. I do remember CJ declaring that Ministers of the Gospel were guaranteed honor in Heaven and that may be why he insisted his daughters all marry pastors. I’m not sure what ‘category’ he would say dishonored Pastors would fall into.

  17. Somewhereintime
    August 20th, 2014 at 1:25 pm

    Great new Brent post up on an email interaction with one of the zombee pastors in the Northeast (Dan Roca).

    Here is the essence of the conversation between Brent and the zombee pastor. As one would guess, Roca was zombeefied in the 2009 Pastors College. He has been a pastor for little over a year. So, my guess is he is all full of vigor and spit over Brent based upon Brent’s “slander” of Paul Buckly. Roca will get “disciplined” by his SGM pastors and told not to engage with Brent ever again. In typical cult fashion.

    Brent’s Summary:
    “The SGM leaders lie to the SGM pastors. The pastors believe their lies and refuse to read my (Brent’s) evidence. The SGM pastors pass on those lies to people in the churches. The SGM leaders don’t want to be honest because they will lose their jobs and their money.”

    It’s almost funny (almost) reading Dan Roca’s emails. Here is a great line in one of his emails… “Your site is full of gossip and it is clear that you are not walking with the Lord in this, not seeking anyone’s good, but only to destroy something beautiful that God has made.”

    Unfortuntately his emails are very very sad. Especially from an ordained pastor. No logic. Spreading heresay. No desire to know the truth. In essence, the PERFECT pastor to be a part of Sovereign Farce Ministries.

  18. Somewhereintime
    August 20th, 2014 at 1:32 pm

    Another nugget from Brent in his post …

    “Yesterday, Aron Osborne, recommended Metro Life Church leave SGM. It will be official in a few weeks. ”

    We knew it was coming. Osborne and Dave Harvey were best of friends. Is he recommending leaving based upon his information from Harvey or just based upon the information readily available to everyone … or both? No matter, losing Metro Life is just ANOTHER nail in the SGM coffin (where dead bones belong to begin with).

  19. Somewhereintime
    August 20th, 2014 at 2:24 pm

    I’m not sure if everyone has caught this … I didn’t at first, so I thought I’d share.

    In June and August of 2012, The SGM Board of Directors came out and stated that they were all UNITED in Mahaney remaining as President of SGM.

    In SEPTEMBER of 2012, Brent has emails showing Paul Buckley, Dave Harvey and other Board members still discussing their desire to have CJ resign as President of SGM.

    They wanted him BOOTED. They were just to cowardly to make the decision on their own (by the way, that was THEIR JOB!!!).

    The emails that Brent provides proves another point in SGM history where SGM leaders outright LIED to all of the SGM church pastors and members!


    If you still go to a SGM church. Shame on you!

  20. whatistruth
    August 20th, 2014 at 3:09 pm

    Regarding Brent’s post this is one of the creepiest things Roca says ‘ but only to destroy something beautiful that God has made.’ if sovereign grace ministries is not man made and man centric I don’t know what is.

    Also, I was thinking about people that still go to a SGM church, especially those that have been or continue to be friends or are related to people that have been hurt, lied to, ignored by pastors in SGM and they know the truth, they know the ‘church’ did their friends/family wrong, yet they continue to attend and participate in a sovereign grace church. I think is just too difficult and the lesser of two hurts, so they stay. It is really difficult to leave your place of worship after many years, especially if you were a good little sovereign gracer i.e. you made the ‘local’ church your whole life, once you leave, it all goes away. It is too hard to face leaving and much easier to believe things are going to change.

  21. 5yearsinPDI
    August 20th, 2014 at 6:17 pm

    Roca was zombeefied in the 2009 Pastors College.

    Ah, the Pastor’s College. That was the name of the theological training institute started by Charles Spurgeon, “Prince of Preachers”.

    I heard one SGM pastor refer to the modern crop of young students at the SGM PC as potential Spurgeons. CJ called them Timothy’s. Whatever. They are the best, the brightest, the chosen ones. I have to admit this latest post by Brent is really funny.

  22. Just saying...
    August 20th, 2014 at 10:30 pm

    It is interesting Brent claims they refuse to meet with him and he would gladly meet with them anywhere/anytime.

    Then, when they invite him to meet with them in Massachusettes, he immediately demands Nashville.

    Same with when they agreed to meet at CLC and he refused and demanded his three week trial extravaganza.

    Brent doesn’t want to meet with them any more than they want to meet with him.

    And in typical narcissist fashion, if it isn’t his way, he’s not playing.

  23. Cult Watcher
    August 20th, 2014 at 10:55 pm

    ROCKVILLE, Md. (WJLA) – A Montgomery County Circuit Court judge chastised a former youth group leader Thursday, calling him a “cowardly pervert” and “pathetic human being.”

    Judge Terrance McGann sentenced Nathaniel Morales, 56, to 40 years in state prison for molesting at least four boys during the 1980s. The abuse occurred while Morales ministered at Covenant Life Church in Gaithersburg.

    Then in his mid-20s, Morales led youth Bible studies, directed worship teams, and even attended sleepovers with the male teens he mentored. Morales’ middle-of-the-night attacks went undetected for years, because he exuded trustworthiness and charm.

    Following what many described as a long-overdue sentencing, victim Jeremy Cook, now a married man with three children, spoke publicly.

    “This was not a one-time thing, there was a pattern. This is someone who won’t change,” Cook stated. “To see justice served, and to see a predator taken off the street, is worth all of this.”

    Cook, who now resides in Raleigh, N.C., was only a teenager when Morales abused him around 50 times during church-related sleepovers.

    “He [Morales] acted as a predator. He found ways to get access to children and then abused them over the course of years,” Cook added. “He was a chameleon.”

    Shortly after police filed charges against Morales in July 2011, the self-proclaimed “man of God” told investigators he suffered from severe memory loss. The 56-year-old said his medical disability prevented him from recalling the period of time when the abuse occurred.

    “I find that to be utterly unthinkable,” said Pam Plaisted, who had a short engagement to Morales during the late 1980s. “All of us who were there [in court] wanted to say, ‘Come on! You really are not faking this!’”

    Judge McGann didn’t buy what the former minister was preaching either, saying:

    “You can’t even bring your despicable self to admit your crime. So, you hide behind your phony self-diagnosis of amnesia. Mr. Morales, you are one pathetic human being.”

    Morales’ public defender, Alan Drew, asked Judge McGann for leniency, citing, among other items, a clinical study that found his client’s chance of re-offending was, “low-to-moderate.”

    “Even though he [Morales] doesn’t remember any of these events, it’s certainly had an impact on him,” Drew stated. “He is now 56, and the likelihood of him committing other offenses of this character, I think, are rather small.”

    “I don’t believe your insatiable appetite for boys can be cured. Your wires are permanently twisted. Your conduct has had a profound and lasting deleterious effect,” Judge McGann replied. “A long sentence is the only way to adequately punish you, protect society from you and deter other potential boy molesters.”

    Morales, who remained stoic in court, with no show of emotion on his face, chose not to make a statement, or issue an apology to his victims seated a few feet away.

    “Here’s someone who can’t hurt anyone else again. He’ll be put away, it protects others and that’s the most important thing to me,” Cook concluded.

    Cook and his fellow victims, now all grown men, are also upset with former church elders at Covenant Life Church who, investigators say, tried to cover-up Morales’ sexual abuse for decades. Cook tells ABC 7 News their concealment is something they’ll have to live with the rest of their lives.

  24. Somewhereintime
    August 22nd, 2014 at 6:53 am

    Ex-Mars Hill leaders are bringing formal charges against Mark Driscoll. Brent still can’t get his charges heard by CJ’s loyal lackeys.

    Just saying … What’s your beef with Brent? If you had an issue with your town government, why would you want to meet with a Sanitation Engineer?

  25. Balaam's donkey
    August 22nd, 2014 at 8:04 am

    Somewhereintime #2024
    The article in your post is an excellent example of what SGM pastors/members should have done in CJ’s case, as well as to many other SGM pastors like him. However, SGM pastors are notorious for their cowardice toward CJ while they bully the saints. This is why Ezekiel 34 continues to unfold throughout SGM.

    “The weak you have not strengthened, the sick you have not healed,the injured you have not bound up, the strayed you have not brought back, the lost you have not sought, and with force and harshness you have ruled them.” Ezekiel 34:4

    If you are still a member of an SGM church you are vicariously encouraging and supporting this type of behavior and harm. The responsible thing for you to do is leave. God is aggressively opposed to the shepherds of SGM because they have not repented.

  26. old timer
    August 22nd, 2014 at 8:24 am

    Somewhere 2024………..Mar’s Hill…..Typical narcissistic sociopath who is full of himself.

    …..exhibits lack of self-control by his speech and by verbally assaulting others.”
    “….. exhibits anger and ungraceful ways of dealing with those with whom he disagrees and who he disagrees with. He does this by (among other ways) putting people down, caricaturing and dismissing.
    “We believe that the way…..leads has created a culture of fear instead of a culture of candor and safety. People are often afraid to ask questions or challenge certain ideas.”
    “……… verbally abusive to people who challenge him, disagree with him, or question him.”

    Lots of men in churches like this who fool many people with their strong charismatic personalities.
    Unless people stand up to these men, and/or totally disregard them…they continue to manipulate and control others. When the sociopath realizes they are a complete nonentity, and very much expendable, they shrink into the nasty little worms they truly are.

  27. R-P
    August 22nd, 2014 at 8:39 am

    I am curious, are any of the regular commenters on this site actually moving away from their obsession with SGM or are they just digging the trench deeper.

  28. Scary Stuff
    August 22nd, 2014 at 9:31 am

    I didn’t know CJ’s daughters all married pastors. That is very odd.

  29. Fruit Flavored
    August 22nd, 2014 at 12:50 pm

    Dave MacKenzie – are you still around?

    I was looking at CLC’s website today and noticed that Braden Greer is still listed as a pastor. A few months ago on this blog someone mentioned that he had resigned. I always appreciated him while at CLC. He seemed to have more compassion for the people than some of the other leadership.

    Were we misinformed or did the situation change?

  30. Disillusioned
    August 22nd, 2014 at 1:15 pm

    Fruit Flavored,

    You’re correct – I left the church amidst the scandal, but my understanding is that Braden will be leaving shortly to do a church plant in Columbia, South Carolina (unaffiliated with CLC, and part of the Acts 29 churches). Below is a link that describes Braden’s efforts. I, too, thought Braden showed a lot more compassion than the other pastors at CLC. He was the one I was most comfortable with talking about issues inside and outside the church. Hope this is helpful.

  31. lae
    August 22nd, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    Scary Stuff said “I didn’t know CJ’s daughters all married pastors. That is very odd.”

    I wonder if they married pastors of if they married and daddy made their husbands pastors. I think all the husbands were SGM pastors, so it may be that daddy helped the husbands to get good, well paying, no qualification jobs….

  32. Fruit Flavored
    August 22nd, 2014 at 2:20 pm


    Thanks for the information and link. Perhaps he is still at CLC because he has not yet been able to raise the funds for the church plant. The progress thermometer on his site shows his financial support still has a long way to go.

    I’m glad he was able to listen to the issues you presented. I believe he has the gift of mercy. I hope neither SGM nor Acts 29 will cloud his giftings.

  33. Kris
    August 22nd, 2014 at 2:22 pm

    R-P said,

    I am curious, are any of the regular commenters on this site actually moving away from their obsession with SGM or are they just digging the trench deeper.

    I think you might be laboring under a false dilemma. One can find SGM’s issues interesting and worthy of analysis without that interest being an “obsession” or something that affects one’s life negatively in any way. For many people, it can take years to gain full insight into their experiences. Talking about SGM and analyzing the dysfunction are typically part of the healing experience. If you’ve been reading for any length of time, you will notice that most commenters’ participation waxes and wanes, depending upon where they are in the process. For those of us who were not actually harmed by our time in SGM, there is no “trench” to “dig deeper” in the first place.

    What is your connection to SGM? Are you (or were you) a member? Or just an interested bystander?

  34. Lover of CLC
    August 22nd, 2014 at 2:51 pm

    Fruit Flavored–Braden’s goal was to always leave around September 1. This Sunday we are having a time wher we can say goodbye to him. His house has been sold, his in-laws have bought property near Columbia and he bought a bit of property from them.

  35. steve240
    August 22nd, 2014 at 2:54 pm

    Just saying said

    It is interesting Brent claims they refuse to meet with him and he would gladly meet with them anywhere/anytime.
    Then, when they invite him to meet with them in Massachusettes, he immediately demands Nashville.
    Same with when they agreed to meet at CLC and he refused and demanded his three week trial extravaganza.
    Brent doesn’t want to meet with them any more than they want to meet with him.
    And in typical narcissist fashion, if it isn’t his way, he’s not playing.

    This is the first I have heard this. Are you sure about this?

    Has Brent really refused to meet?

  36. Still Soarin'
    August 22nd, 2014 at 2:57 pm

    R-P # 2027 I think it’s more like a lot of us are still “digging out of a trench”. – maybe for some it’s like a “sink hole”. No sarcasm intended – just a little realism.

    Kris #2033 – agree

  37. Lover of CLC
    August 22nd, 2014 at 3:05 pm

    Concerning C.J.’s daughters marrying pasotrs. I have known Mike Bradshaw since his high school days. It came as no surprise that he would go to pastor’s college. He was a godly high school student and by SGM standards was qualified to be a pastor. I never knew Steve Whitacre until he came to CLC fro the Pastor’s College. He seemed at that time to be have the gifting to be a psator, again by SGM standards. Would either one of them gotten to be pastors if they did marry C.J.’s daughters. Most PC grads do go on to become pastors, but not all. That is an intersting question I do not have an answer to. Certainly it did not hurt them that their father-in-law was Mahaney. Both Steve and Mike are working outside in the secualr world now.

    Brian Chesemore is the guy who does have the pastor’s calling on his life. I do not believe he needed to marry into the clan to be a SGM pastor.

  38. Paul K
    August 22nd, 2014 at 3:42 pm

    Regarding CJ’ and Carolyn’s daughters marrying pastors : (1) I seriously doubt anyone who was not a pastor, unless not in his right mind, would have thought he had a realistic hope of getting CJ’s approval to pursue any of his daughters
    (2) those who married the Mahaney girls
    we’re not promoted by CJ but were indeed called and gifted to pastor but I will not touch the subject of how being tied into the family when the Detwiler docs hit the Internet affected them. (3)
    That each of them married pastors is not surprising given the narcissistic part of CJ’s make up that drives him to control others so he can create the appearance or illusion of the perfect environment of anything he’s involved in whether “his” local church, “his” network of churches, and especially “his” family.

    As an aside , it strikes me as dumbfounding how those who prey on children have the uncanny ability to come across as so trustworthy (sleepovers!) as do narcissistic “leaders” like Mahaney : “We will never do anything to embarrass you” as he pleads for funds for SGM while purposely hiding from us that CLC is already giving SGM $800,000 a year (integrity?!)

    His daughters all married to pastors simply fits into the narcistic “need” to
    feel in control of others (easier to do when their income depends on you) so you can think to yourself and fool others
    that whatever you touch turns to gold.
    If you won’t be controlled (u actually ask questions!) you are regarded as wood, hay, or stubble and are disposed of in the SGM fire as useless to “his” purposes.

    How sad that the “loyal men of CJ” here called the RBDs can’t admit they were duped by Mahaney and hooked their freight trains to the wrong locomotive
    (disillusioning to say the least) and “discipline” Billy Graham’s grandson for stating the obvious (“of course CJ knew about Morales – he knew about everything that was significant at CLC.
    To think otherwise is just plain naive.”)
    Amazing how many “have CJ’s back”
    regardless of what Jesus may think about it.

  39. 5yearsinPDI
    August 22nd, 2014 at 5:09 pm

    R-P, dude, this episode ( last few years) is wilder than a Peretti novel. It’s like reading a marvelous who-done-it book bit by bit waiting to see how the book ends. This blog is amazing.

    I mean, we have all the wounded cynics posting…and then come the docs. The docs dude. Did you read any? THE DOCS. Repeat, the DETDOCS. Then the reaction to the docs. Then CJ picks up his legos and stomps out of the playroom. Then CLC leaves SGM. Then we get more churches leaving. Then- voila, the lawsuit is filed and Brent is on a roll. The big dogs dig in with all their might, but the presses roll, and finally Mohler is down in the ring for the count. CJ is outta T4G and GC and SBTS. But wait, CCEF and World Mag are extolling the glories of SGM churches with their compassionate counseling. And golden boy Harvey has left for another denomination.

    We turn the page and Morales is on trial, and Layman admits under oath he knew the sordid tale back in 1992.

    Now we wait for the new Brent posts coming in a few weeks. Will they be speculation? Or will they have new leaked emails incriminating the Ceej himself?

    We can go back and reread in awesome wonder the amazing tale of Megan, divorced and remarried against 30 years of rules, daughter of the Prince of Worship. And ex hubby posting, and grandparents who can’t see grandkids posting. We can’t put the book down.

    You don’t get the appeal of this place? Have you read the stories? They’ll make your jaw drop. And the doctrinal discussions- hey, they are as thought provoking as anything anywhere. Not your boring SGM meetings. ( and I am a Calvinist)

    I have kids, a great hub, a church, friends, a busy life, a queue of books to get to and a list of things to do on the whiteboard that never seems to shrink. Relatives to visit and house and yard…..but guess what I check every day, well almost. yup, this place. Some of the most interesting, compassionate, intelligent, and godly Christian people in cyberspace. Kris has more insight than the whole Gospel Coalition put together ( and yeah, I have a million Piper CDs and books, not to mention many of the others like Keller and Carson).

    Suck it up dude. God has exposed SGM for the rotten wolves that many of them are. We rejoice to see it ripped down, and go on with our lives with grattitude for all the victims being helped by what this blog- and others- has done to facilitate God’s work is ending the reign of King Saul SGM.

  40. Abused by SGM
    August 22nd, 2014 at 5:20 pm

    I would encourage Brent to call on all members of Paul’s church to ask him to issue a categorical denial that he was involved in removing CJ. If he did not work to remove CJ, Paul can clearly say it in the open and take on Brent in the open. Why is he sending Dava Raca after Brent instead of asking Paul to issue an open denial.

    It is not unusual for SGM pastors to demand repentance irrespective of whether someone has conscientious objections. I would venture to say that is their usual MO. I am appalled at the gall of these guys to continue to demand repentance from others while they themselves resolutely refuse to repent even after all this. If they continue this path, brim & firestone is the only thing left for these guys.

    Brent, continue to hold these guys accountable. There are many here praying for you. Do not be discouraged by SGM labeling and teactics. There must be someone who can carry the banner against the fierce enemy. Go forth in the name of the Lord. Let the name of the Lord be vindicated. The antics of SGM & mars hill had done more damage to the Christian faith than help the gospel preaching. I have lost all respect for the SGM pastors and the people who continue to unquestioningly support this operation (I am hesitant to call this ministry at this point).

    Brent, May the Lord bless you! More power to you. If you want to hold SGM accountable, please consider supporting Brent by encouraging him through this struggle. Pray for strength to battle against these guys who seem to have endless supply of men and money. God cannot be mocked. He will surely do what is right. Let us pray for all things hidden in the dark to be brought to light. Oh my! there are a lot of things in SGM that are hidden in the dark dungeons. Nothing is impossible for God. Brent may not be able to win all by himself. But God can through his people.

  41. Persona
    August 22nd, 2014 at 6:18 pm

    2037 The question is whether or not CJ’s daughters would have been allowed to marry non-pastors. CJ said from the pulpit on many occasions that his daughters would all be marrying pastors when and if they got married.

    It’s interesting that he allowed two of them to take outside work after the big church split but, I am sure they still lead ministries in various capacities, in the L’ville church.

  42. Oswald
    August 22nd, 2014 at 8:09 pm

    Paul K @2038 — Good to ‘see’ you. And thanks for your knowledgable input.

    5yrs @2039 — You go, woman. You’ve said it all and spoken (probably) for many in addressing R-P.

    I also rarely miss a day of visiting here.

  43. Somewhereintime
    August 22nd, 2014 at 10:14 pm


    I guess I’ll respond to you as it appeared that you were responding to my comments …

    “I am curious, are any of the regular commenters on this site actually moving away from their obsession with SGM or are they just digging the trench deeper.”

    The trench that you reference comes from the dung that SGM leaders and pastors continue to fill with their lies and manipulation of the Gospel. They continuously fill up the trench and we are forced to respond to the sin that they are blind to and dig it out.

    We would LOVE to see them repent because we understand the great news of Jesus. We, above all others, would be the first to extend forgiveness to them. The problem is , which you obviously don’t understand, is that they WILL NOT REPENT.

    They will continue their charade and they WILL go down with the ship as the LORD disciplines them and the entire group of churches.

    Their hearts are of stone and need to become flesh.

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