Thursday, November 16, 2006

And curiouser

The "Lie Headline" might have been removed from savingbellevue.com, but the information it advertised was not. My thanks to a sharp-eyed friend who noticed a cursor change whenever the cursor got close to the two spinning rings on the "saving Bellevue" home page. And when one clicks the rings (orbiting the word "Truth," ironically), the same article exists in its entirety. While the headline was removed, the accusations--including the allegation that, where Pastor Gaines is concerned, "TRUTH IS A MOVING TARGET"--still reside on the site.

Again, such sites must be shuttered by those that operate them; they were a bad idea that has only gotten worse.

--Mike

EDITED TO ADD: I'm pleased to note that the "hidden link" no longer works. Why it was there in the first place will, no doubt, remain a mystery that only Internet archeologists of the far-distant future will be able to solve.

However, I'm not so pleased to note a "saving Bellevue" invitation for members of Pastor Gaines' former church in Gardendale, Alabama to e-mail the site. Why, there's even a special inbox set up just for them. Wonder why?

4 comments:

Shane Lambert said...

I am 35 years old and the pastor of a Southern Baptist church in Alabama. Dr. Rogers is one of my spiritual heroes, and I was incredibly privileged to attend his Pastor's Training Institute at Bellevue in September 2004. Those three days in Memphis had a profound impact on me and my ministry. Dr. Rogers was, without a doubt, one of the wisest men I've ever had the honor of spending time with.

Over the last month I have been following the "saving Bellevue" website and corresponding blog. It breaks my heart that this wonderful church that Dr. Rogers served faithfully for so many years is being viciously attacked by gossip that is spreading clear around the world. These accusations against a man of God that have been plastered on the Internet for anyone to see are a cancer on the body of Christ.

Now I know I'm not there experiencing this first hand, but let me just give you an outsider's impression of what's going on with "saving Bellevue":

-It appears to me that one or two people that may have had legitimate concerns about petty problems in the church have allowed their differences with the pastor to become a root of bitterness in their hearts. Despite the Spirit's inner voice telling them to forgive and forget, they just can't let it go. My question to the accusers is this: Is it worth tearing your church apart and destroying your witness to the world just to try to prove yourselves right?

-The pastor may indeed have made some mistakes (jumping a fence, Hezbollah), but what pastor hasn't? As much as I loved and admired Dr. Rogers, he would have been the first to tell you that he had made his fair share of mistakes. To subject Pastor Gaines to this intense level of scrutiny is an unfair burden to place on any man. I'm sure if his accusers had every word they've uttered over the past twenty years strictly scrutinized it would make them quite uncomfortable.

-Does "saving Bellevue" really believe that by using these tactics they can do what their name implies they are trying to do? What I'd like to know is: Who will save Bellevue from 'saving Bellevue'

-Another question along those same lines: Can anybody win in a situation like this? I know God works all things together for good to those who love Him (one of Dr. Roger's favorite verses), but it's hard to imagine how this is going to advance the cause of Christ.

-One more question: Shouldn't folks just be thankful they've got a strong pastor who stands on the Word of God and preaches the truth unashamedly? I mean, let's face it, you could have gotten stuck with a spineless, wimpy, liberal pastor who compromises the Word of God just to try to keep everybody happy (or maybe that's the kind of pastor "saving Bellevue" wants).

Let me just say for the record that I don't know Steve Gaines, I've never met him and I've never heard him preach in person. But what I do know about him from his preaching and from folks who do know him (or knew him, as Dr. Rogers did) leads me to believe that he is God's man to lead BBC.

This "witch hunt" that has been launched against this man of God seems to me to be nothing more than a contrast in personalities and styles. Of course he's not going to be exactly like Dr. Rogers. Who could be? Of course he's going to have different ways of doing things that might not fit into everybody's neat little box. Of course it's going to rub some folks the wrong way when they're forced out of their comfort zones when change occurs.

But for the sake of the unity of the body of Christ, I implore everyone involved to get over your pettiness and get on with the business of the Kingdom. Lost souls are populating hell every single second and the church is busy arguing over someone who doesn't preach on Wednesday nights. God forgive us!

Anonymous said...

Amen

Billy Clark

Anonymous said...

Mike,

It makes me wonder: Who does savingbellevue.com think the savior of Bellevue is? If Christ is still head of the Church, shouldn't his commands in Matthew 18 be honored?

This camp has written a long dissertation on why Matthew 18 doesn't apply to the savingbellevue group. That's interesting, I don't remember Jesus saying that if Matthew 18 got difficult, go to the web! Difficulties with Matthew 18 are not excuses for open, massive gossip.

Aaron King said...

"'I had rather play with forked lightning, or take in my hands
living wires with their fiery currents, then to speak a wreak less word against any servant of Christ, or idly repeat the slanderous darts which thousands of Christians are hurling on others.'-A.B. Simpson

When you listen to slander you are as guilty as the person who gives it. It’s a small compliment to you that people want to use your ears for garbage cans."
-Dr.Adrian Rogers
-Sermon on truth and consequences

Dr.Rogers has a point. We all need to listen to this message on the gravity of slander and bearing a false witness.

In Christ, Amk