Bullied in the Pulpit

In Monday’s post we discussed how a pastor bullied his congregation by setting them up to believe that he was in contact with God for one hour every day and surely what came out of his mouth and heart was from God.  He even went to far as to pray before he delivered his sermon that God would speak through him.

But this pastor, and many like him, are victims of SBC bullies and their peers who are bullies, and they do not find sanctuary behind the pulpit when they do not follow the standard fundamental line against women.

 Al Mohler is a pulpit bully.

You remember that Dr Mohler said that when he was younger, he thought that maybe women might be scripturally qualified to be pastors,, but one day he was walking on campus with someone named Carl Henry who told him that someday Dr Mohler would be very embarrassed about his stance on women in ministry.  Dr. Mohler immediately went to the library and read all he could on the subject, and he also read some Scriptures.

The Associated Baptist Press story quotes Mohler: Mohler said Henry did not change his position on women in ministry, but rather, “It was the Scripture that changed my position.”

“I had to come face to face with the fact that I had just picked this up,” he said. “I had just breathed this in, and I just capitulated it out without checking it according to the Scriptures. By the way, going to the Scriptures, it doesn’t take long. It wasn’t like I embarked on a lifelong study to discover what Scripture says on this. It didn’t take long at all.”

He says that he read the Scripture and the words and now HE knows what it means.  And you better believe him, because he had a Damascus Campus Road experience.  This is the same thing that the first pastor did.  Dr. Mohler set us up, and who can go against a Damascus Campus Road experience?  We just know that he had to have seen the light and the scales fell from his eyes.

Maybe Dr. Mohler should have stayed in the library for a little bit longer and read more of the Scriptures. 

Dr Mohler speaks and the Southern Baptist Convention listens.  People are afraid of the leaders and they will not go against them openly.  Pastors are afraid – even afraid of their own members.  My former Baptist church is a great example.  The pastor is for women in ministry, but when it was even suggested two years ago that the by-laws be changed to allow women deacons, many people left the church, and the result was that it was never even brought before the congregation.

So you see, it is not just Dr. Mohler who bullies the pastor in the pulpit.  My pastor was bullied in the pulpit by a congregation that is afraid of appearing to be in dissent to anything the SBC says.  The pastor was afraid that he could not hold the church together if there was a possibility that women might someday be a deacon.  What would the church have done if the discussion was about a woman pastor. 

 Note:  I intended to write a better story, but the pastor mentioned yesterday wrote another article in the paper today and that is all I can think of.  I will tell you about it in my post Friday.

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About bwebaptistwomenforequality

Shirley Taylor writes with humor and common sense, challenging the church body to reclaim equality for Christian women.
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17 Responses to Bullied in the Pulpit

  1. Its strange how afraid they get if something ‘morally right’ stands between them and their pocketbook or status tends to change their minds.

    They accuse others of little faith, and yet what do they call this?

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  2. TL says:

    When ones income and future income and popularity depends upon what stance one takes on things, it becomes a sort of political game. It seems simply from the chain of events that Mohler changed his stance because his position on women jeopardized his future with SBC. Unfortunately, this sort of thing really means that he has been disobeying God’s leading in this area ever since. When one knowingly and deliberately goes against what they know to be true for reasons of popularity and income, how do they expect the Holy to overlook that. It doesn’t matter at that point that someone scared him into it. He wasn’t deceived. He made a choice. I’m really sorry to hear this. And I wonder how many other SBC pastors have done the same.

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    • Lydia says:

      “Dr. Mohler set us up, and who can go against a Damascus Campus Road experience?”

      I can. His “Damascus Road Experience” was seeing where the wind was blowing in the SBC and it was blowing toward legalism. AFter all, his wife got an M.Div for some reason. Nowadays, that is almost unheard of in an SBC seminary.

      I live in Mohlerland so I know how this played out for him to become the youngest SBC seminary president in our history. (age 33). One did not do that by affirming women in ministry. In fact, he spent a lot of years getting rid ofthe seminary female leaders.

      strange, I came to my position by studying scripture and Greek words as 1st Century believers would have understood them. But then, I don’t make a living in ministry.

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  3. Kristen says:

    I think Mohler really believes the Scriptures changed his mind on this. I believe he was scared into it– and because of this, he allowed himself to come to too quick a conclusion on the matter, rather than examining the issue carefully and comprehensively. The fact that it didn’t take him “very long at all,” is a strong indicator that he did not give the topic the attention it deserves. It’s no different than if he had sat down to the Scriptures in 1864 and not “taken very long at all” to come to the conclusion that the Bible endorses slavery, and that the African races were destined by God to serve the white races.

    I wish Mohler had noticed Proverbs 18:17 in his studies: “The first to present his case seems right, till another comes forward and questions him.” But as has been said– fear (and convenience) made it easy to come to the conclusion he did without cross-examination of the position he was told he’d better decide to take.

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  4. Marg Mowczko says:

    I must confess that I am new to the concept of “fear” in regards to Biblical equality. As a woman who feels called to be a Bible teacher I have encountered many obstacles, discouragements and difficulties, but I have never been afraid of my beliefs.

    I recently went to a meeting of people who are inclined towards Biblical equality and was surprised at the fear they felt. These people were concerned that they might be discovered as being egalitarian by leaders of their denomination, and that this discovery would affect their fellowship and even their jobs. (Some are employed by the church.) These people belong to a highly respected denomination which is staunchly complementarian (and not SBC.) Many others from their denomination refused to even come to our meeting for fear of negative discrimination.

    This fear is breeding secrecy and silence. Egalitarian views are hidden and not discussed or debated. This cannot be healthy for the church!

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    • You make a very good point. In fact, I wrote down this title “the Silent ones in the church” as an idea for a post. If you don’t mind, I might quote you as many people will not read the comments.

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    • Lydia says:

      Oh, this is a huge problem. And what is worse is that now soft comps are under attack. Especially in the SBC. Mohler’s hand picked successor, Russ Moore, Dean at SBTS, says that comps are wimps and we need more patriarchy. Now, even the soft comps are finding things uncomfortable. It makes Russ Moore angry that soft comps claim comp but live as egals.

      He even wrote about this in a piece for the Henry Institute. I was devestated when he was recruited as teaching pastor at Highview. (Now he is double dipping as he is paid as Dean at SBTS and as teaching pastor at Highview…Mohler’s church and were Kevin Ezell used to be SR pastor but took over NAMB)

      (Ministry can be great income streams if you know the right people…)

      My church (in the same town as SBTS) used to be a magnet for students coming from out of town to the seminary. Not any more. Why? Because we allow women deacons. We have had a mix of male and female deacons since the church was planted in 1960.

      Now the magnet churches for the seminary are the very hierarchical ones. (Mohler redefined the “Holy Priesthood” for a whole generation) There is an unspoken rule for students who want to go places in ministry. They can make or break you so you had best be one of them or keep your mouth shut.

      There is no freedom of thought or freedom of differing interpretations of the B issues at SBC seminary’s anymore. They are basicially indoctrination centers for the non salvic B issues.

      In the past, the SBC rose above disagreements on non salvic B issues. Not anymore. Now they are defined as salvic issues. But what is worse, in order to sell them to people as “salvic” they have brought in the old Arian Heresy of ESS. They are teaching a chain of command structure for the Trinity for eternity past and future. This is to map the Trinity chain of command structure to human relationships.

      Note friends: All neo Christian cults eventually tamper with the Trinity. They have to. Jesus is too powerful.

      Beware.

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  5. Marg Mowczko says:

    I’ve been thinking of writing something along the same lines; but I don’t want to expose my new friends who are secretly egalitarian. I do not want to betray confidences.

    Looking forward to reading yours.

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  6. Mabel says:

    Google Ruth Tucker and read her story. She was fired from Calvin Theological Seminary when the hierarchalists took over management. They could not find fault with her, so they lied to her about her getting bad student reviews. When she found out, they offered to buy her silence. A female Hebrews professor was fired from her j ob because the Southern Baptist Seminary she taught at was overtaken by hierarchalists who believed a woman must not teach men. She had to sell blood to make ends meet. Talk about fear. Many seminary professors will not speak up for women for fear of being overlooked for plump assignments or not be considered for promotion, and at worst, being fired. Such are the fruits of these hierarchalists. Maybe they are honest, but they are not honorable. Being honest in your belief does not make your belief correct.

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    • Excellent observation. In fact, I had discussiion with someone this morning via email about that same thing – being honest in your belief does not make your belief right.

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    • Lydia says:

      “A female Hebrews professor was fired from her j ob because the Southern Baptist Seminary she taught at was overtaken by hierarchalists who believed a woman must not teach men. ”

      And what is worse is that the same institution took her money and awarded her a PhD TO TEACH HEBREW. SWBTS. And the hierarchalist was Paige Patterson. He claimed that male students were complaining about a woman teaching them. I doubt that since he could not produce names and claimed they were coming to him secretly but he never once discussed this with the Dean over Dr. Klouda.

      Now these same students are going on to be pastors.

      Oh and don’t forget that SWBTS now has a “homemaker” degree

      Talk about Hypocrisy.

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  7. TL says:

    I remember about the Hebrews teacher. She had been promised tenure. The whole thing was so disgusting. Patterson didn’t care that he was costing her a great deal of money. Forget the details, but didn’t she have a husband who needed medical care and didn’t they have to sell their home and move because of this. She tried to fight it but because it was a religious institution, Patterson got away with it.

    Things like this need to be remembered and not forgotten. I’d like to see some articles on all the staunch gender hierarchalists who have harmed Christians in their zeal to promote men and demote women. Their fruits need to be seen for what they are.

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  8. Kristen says:

    Marg said:

    “They could not find fault with her, so they lied to her about her getting bad student reviews. When she found out, they offered to buy her silence.”

    and:

    “Maybe they are honest, but they are not honorable. Being honest in your belief does not make your belief correct.”

    I’m getting a disconnect between these two. Lying about a teacher to get rid of her, then offering to buy her off when discovered, is not honest by any stretch of the imagination.

    And with regards to the Seminary professor who had to sell her blood– what good is being “right” if you have not love? Will Jesus praise them for holding fast to their doctrines while saying to this woman, “be warm, be filled– but get lost!”

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  9. Mabel says:

    Thanks for everyone who jumped in to comment. I agree with TL that casulties from the male supremacists should not be forgotten. Eric, thanks for your correction. That’s how I learn. Kristen, LOL! I didn’t see the disconnect between my 2 thoughts. Yes, those who are hell bent on keeping women in their place will lie and use devious means to acheive their purpose. Others who subscribe to this false teaching may be “honestly” believing it to be true, but believing in something does not make it right. Just look at the jihadists.

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