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JustaSearcher

Fort Worth Star-Telegram Series

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The word “independent” appears to be used to refer to non-denominational.

The term "denomination" historically and generally refers to Protestant churches which came together for the sake of "denominating" themselves from other Protestant churches. “Independent, fundamental, Baptist” churches ARE a denomination because it is a name applied ("denominated") to these churches.

It has nothing to do with the form of church government. Each church is connected by a “Bible college” or a “camp”. That is a fact that cannot be dodged. I have seen it myself in several IFB churches in the various places I have lived.

One must go back in time to see a pattern in any group to judge the roles, norms and values of said group. Group patterns are revealed over time. When patterns of abuse are repeated, one is forced to ask why and what steps can be used to reverse it.

Which is what my question was to begin with.

Sincerity says 'we need to keep our own house and clearly we haven't been; let's work together to root out the predators and heal those who are hurt'.

Do you agree with that?

 

 

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2 hours ago, Propovednik said:

My thoughts are that if these allegations are true it goes to show people are still sinners and need God's grace. Do you want strangers talking about your sins online? What if the allegations are not true? How can you be sure they are true? Why should I take the word of the supposed victims over the word of the supposed perpetraitors? 

Some are allegations, yes. I do think it's important to include the word "credible" here, too, because they have been investigated. But even if we were to set aside those, there are still many, many criminal cases that have also been investigated by law enforcement, charged, gone to trial, convicted and sentenced. Those cases are reported on, printed in the perpetrators' local newspapers and published online for the public to see. So, relying solely on "allegations" isn't what has happened here at all. The Star-Telegram series was clear about how these cases each came about. 

As to all of your questions, I would ask this one in return...what if these allegations are true? Should you side on the possibility of the what ifs when minors are involved? You're not being asked to be judge, jury and sentencer. No, it's be the adult. Please, if you have any doubts on a person's character, do the safe thing, the RIGHT thing, and do not put children at risk. Surely, no one would be put at fault for protecting a child?

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2 hours ago, JustaSearcher said:

The word “independent” appears to be used to refer to non-denominational.

 

The term "denomination" historically and generally refers to Protestant churches which came together for the sake of "denominating" themselves from other Protestant churches.

Obviously using "appears to be" and "Protestant" shows me that you know very little if anything about Independent Fundamentalist Churches. What protestant body did we come out of?

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1 hour ago, A Virtuous Woman said:

Some are allegations, yes. I do think it's important to include the word "credible" here, too, because they have been investigated.

I'm sure Potiphar's wife was considered credible too, but look how that turned out. 

I'm sure your family is safer in an Independent Baptist Church than just about anywhere else. We promote teaching young ladies modesty, so they are less likely to be the target of perverts. We teach that men shouldn't be alone with girls and women, to protect both sexes. You show me another institution that does more to protect potential sexual abuse victims than Independent Baptists, and I'll eat my hat!

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1 hour ago, Baptist_Bible_Believer said:

Obviously using "appears to be" and "Protestant" shows me that you know very little if anything about Independent Fundamentalist Churches. What protestant body did we come out of?

I'm not going down any rabbit trails. The only reason I addressed the 'we're independent' response was to show it simply is illogical. IFB is a denomination according to the how word is interpreted and used in the English language. 

Could you please answer the question I posed:

Sincerity says 'we need to keep our own house and clearly we haven't been; let's work together to root out the predators and heal those who are hurt'.

Do you agree with that or not?

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And once again you have been answered clearly and absolutely by me.

Any allegations should be investigated by the proper authorities as a criminal act.

However, because we are INDEPENDENT CHURCHES - whether you like it or nor - no single person can speak for all Independent Baptist churches.

You show a clear lack of understanding of what an independent Baptist church is, which makes your claim to be an independent Baptist nothing short of a lie. I am sorry to be so blunt, but you cannot claim to be a part of something that you so clearly have no knowledge of.

And if you really were an independent Baptist you would understand that you arguments against the term are wrong.

So once more, every independent Baptist church I personally know of would not hesitate to get the proper authorities involved with any allegation of sexual abuse.

HOWEVER, as independent churches NO SINGLE PERSON OR BODY can speak for the group.

Whatever you say, independent Baptist churches are not a denomination in any organised sense, and there is no spokesperson, ruling body, or organized council to speak in the fashion which you seek.

Your manner, you arguments, and you mistaken understanding of what an independent Baptist church is all combine to indicate that you have nefarious motives.

Speak to us plainly of your background, your affiliations, and your purpose, and we might be more keen on discussion.

Many of us are more than happy to discuss with even those who are of opposing views, just so long as those people are honest and reasonable.

 

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6 minutes ago, DaveW said:

And once again you have been answered clearly and absolutely by me.

Any allegations should be investigated by the proper authorities as a criminal act.

However, because we are INDEPENDENT CHURCHES - whether you like it or nor - no single person can speak for all Independent Baptist churches.

You show a clear lack of understanding of what an independent Baptist church is, which makes your claim to be an independent Baptist nothing short of a lie. I am sorry to be so blunt, but you cannot claim to be a part of something that you so clearly have no knowledge of.

And if you really were an independent Baptist you would understand that you arguments against the term are wrong.

So once more, every independent Baptist church I personally know of would not hesitate to get the proper authorities involved with any allegation of sexual abuse.

HOWEVER, as independent churches NO SINGLE PERSON OR BODY can speak for the group.

Whatever you say, independent Baptist churches are not a denomination in any organised sense, and there is no spokesperson, ruling body, or organized council to speak in the fashion which you seek.

Your manner, you arguments, and you mistaken understanding of what an independent Baptist church is all combine to indicate that you have nefarious motives.

Speak to us plainly of your background, your affiliations, and your purpose, and we might be more keen on discussion.

Many of us are more than happy to discuss with even those who are of opposing views, just so long as those people are honest and reasonable.

 

Pardon me for butting in, but I have a question, something I’ve been wondering while reading this thread that your comment addresses. Is there something wrong with questioning things? Isn’t that what we’re supposed to do in order not to be fooled, whether that be religious, political, etc? 

I also don’t mean to be rude, but you don’t seem very happy to discuss an opposing viewpoint. I understand the concerns about this person being a...what’s the word I want. A mole? Maybe? Idk. But if there’s nothing to hide then why is that a problem? Obviously if someone is going against forum rules that’s different but even if they are seeking questions for a report, aren’t they required to have permission to publish people’s answers? I just don’t understand what the issue is and I’d like to understand in more detail, if possible. 🙂 

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2 hours ago, Propovednik said:

I'm sure Potiphar's wife was considered credible too, but look how that turned out. 

I'm sure your family is safer in an Independent Baptist Church than just about anywhere else. We promote teaching young ladies modesty, so they are less likely to be the target of perverts. We teach that men shouldn't be alone with girls and women, to protect both sexes. You show me another institution that does more to protect potential sexual abuse victims than Independent Baptists, and I'll eat my hat!

The fact that "modesty" is referenced while talking about sexual assault is disturbing to me. I know and understand "standards", to each his own. But again, some of these victims are children. CHILDREN. If that's the view Independent Fundamental Baptists have embraced...well, frankly no words. I thought it was bad when I was young!

One last thing...how again does Potiphar's wife play a roll in all this? I'm fairly familiar with that story and she was the one that "tempted" Joseph, not the other way around. I'm not trying to read into your first comment, but if I'm correct at what my gut is saying, you're suggesting that victims--at least those mentioned in the Star-Telegram series--were not victims at all. Am I correct on assuming that? 

And again, I want to know protocols to prevent abuse? My family has the right to know if they are in fact worshipping with predators. Is that too much to ask?

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29 minutes ago, deborahofthebible said:

Pardon me for butting in, but I have a question, something I’ve been wondering while reading this thread that your comment addresses. Is there something wrong with questioning things? Isn’t that what we’re supposed to do in order not to be fooled, whether that be religious, political, etc? 

I also don’t mean to be rude, but you don’t seem very happy to discuss an opposing viewpoint. I understand the concerns about this person being a...what’s the word I want. A mole? Maybe? Idk. But if there’s nothing to hide then why is that a problem? Obviously if someone is going against forum rules that’s different but even if they are seeking questions for a report, aren’t they required to have permission to publish people’s answers? I just don’t understand what the issue is and I’d like to understand in more detail, if possible. 🙂 

I don't have a problem and have answered the question three times now.

Any instance of sexual abuse in the church that I am currently a member of will have the proper authorities involved to investigate it as a criminal act. If I have to make it this plain - it will be reported to the police for a full legal investigation.

However, as I have repeatedly said, it is not possible for any one person to answer the question in the way that the OP wants, because of the simple fact that we are independent Churches.

The fact that the OP in particular will not accept that as a valid answer is what leads to us being suspicious. To allay those suspicions the OP needs to provide some sort of evidence that he does not have nefarious motives, because it look that way right way to me and to others here.

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2 minutes ago, A Virtuous Woman said:

The fact that "modesty" is referenced while talking about sexual assault is disturbing to me. I know and understand "standards", to each his own. But again, some of these victims are children. CHILDREN. If that's the view Independent Fundamental Baptists have embraced...well, frankly no words. I thought it was bad when I was young!

One last thing...how again does Potiphar's wife play a roll in all this? I'm fairly familiar with that story and she was the one that "tempted" Joseph, not the other way around. I'm not trying to read into your first comment, but if I'm correct at what my gut is saying, you're suggesting that victims--at least those mentioned in the Star-Telegram series--were not victims at all. Am I correct on assuming that? 

And again, I want to know protocols to prevent abuse? My family has the right to know if they are in fact worshipping with predators. Is that too much to ask?

I can only answer for the church that I am a member of, but......

Any accusations of sexual abuse (whether adult or especial involving children) will be passed on to the police to investigate.

Further to this, anyone who does not have a police clearance CANNOT work in children's ministries, and anyone with a record of child molestation cannot be alone with any child at our church building.

But once again, this applies ONLY to the church that I am a member of. This is a factor of independent Baptist churches being INDEPENDENT.

YOU WILL NOT GET ANY ONE PERSON SPEAKING FOR ALL INDEPENDENT BAPTIST CHURCHES BECAUSE WE ARE IUNDEPENDENT.

This is part of the reason that the original article of accusations is not relevant to me.

As I said before, it would be like someone saying that you are responsible for the murders committed in red brick houses because you live in a red brick house. It is a ridiculous assertion.

Likewise, to suggest that I can speak on behalf of  (and am therefore responsible for) an independent Baptist church that I have never been to, never spoken to, have no authority over, don't even live in the same state - or for that matter country - is clearly ridiculous.

 

I have now answered on at least four occasions both the OP and the subsequent accusation that Independent Baptist Churches are somehow not independent, and unless there is some sort of change in the questioning, there is just no point in me saying anything further. It is not a discussion if one side refuses to listen.

And for the final time - any sexual abuse is abhorrent and criminal and should be dealt with by the proper authorities.

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20 minutes ago, A Virtuous Woman said:

The fact that "modesty" is referenced while talking about sexual assault is disturbing to me. I know and understand "standards", to each his own. But again, some of these victims are children. CHILDREN. If that's the view Independent Fundamental Baptists have embraced...well, frankly no words. I thought it was bad when I was young!

One last thing...how again does Potiphar's wife play a roll in all this? I'm fairly familiar with that story and she was the one that "tempted" Joseph, not the other way around. I'm not trying to read into your first comment, but if I'm correct at what my gut is saying, you're suggesting that victims--at least those mentioned in the Star-Telegram series--were not victims at all. Am I correct on assuming that? 

And again, I want to know protocols to prevent abuse? My family has the right to know if they are in fact worshipping with predators. Is that too much to ask?

I have to ask, why does it offend you so much that modesty is mentioned in this way?

The actual quote where the term is used is:

21 minutes ago, A Virtuous Woman said:

We promote teaching young ladies modesty, so they are less likely to be the target of perverts.


There is no implication that it is blaming the woman if she is not modest and is attacked.

There is no implication that dressing with modesty will keep the woman from being attacked (note the use of "less likely").

There is no implication that being immodest is the cause of such attacks.

But please let me ask you this - if a man is intent on making such an attack, is he more likely to attack a woman who is dressed immodestly or is he more likely to attack a woman who is dressed modestly?

The line in particular that is quoted above is simply good advice, not some sort of judgemental attack.

It seems to me that you are simply overreacting to what is a very reasonable statement.

If I am wrong, then please point out to me where in his statement it forces the blame onto the woman?

And also please keep in mind that I am absolutely 100% for criminal charges to be brought against any man who attacks any woman (or child). It is never justified for a man to attack a woman or child, just as it is never justified for a woman to attack a man or child, and it is never justified for a man to attack another man, or a woman to attack another woman, etc. Any such cases should be investigated by the proper authorities and if cause is found for charges and criminal proceeding to be commenced.

















 

 

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5 minutes ago, DaveW said:

I can only answer for the church that I am a member of, but......

Any accusations of sexual abuse (whether adult or especial involving children) will be passed on to the police to investigate.

Further to this, anyone who does not have a police clearance CANNOT work in children's ministries, and anyone with a record of child molestation cannot be alone with any child at our church building.

But once again, this applies ONLY to the church that I am a member of. This is a factor of independent Baptist churches being INDEPENDENT.

YOU WILL NOT GET ANY ONE PERSON SPEAKING FOR ALL INDEPENDENT BAPTIST CHURCHES BECAUSE WE ARE IUNDEPENDENT.

This is part of the reason that the original article of accusations is not relevant to me.

As I said before, it would be like someone saying that you are responsible for the murders committed in red brick houses because you live in a red brick house. It is a ridiculous assertion.

Likewise, to suggest that I can speak on behalf of  (and am therefore responsible for) an independent Baptist church that I have never been to, never spoken to, have no authority over, don't even live in the same state - or for that matter country - is clearly ridiculous.

 

I have now answered on at least four occasions both the OP and the subsequent accusation that Independent Baptist Churches are somehow not independent, and unless there is some sort of change in the questioning, there is just no point in me saying anything further. It is not a discussion if one side refuses to listen.

And for the final time - any sexual abuse is abhorrent and criminal and should be dealt with by the proper authorities.

Okay, I hear you on that. I think we will have to agree to disagree on the "independent" part, although I do understand why members of one church may not be aware of a situation in another. I personally view things slightly on the subject, because that wasn't and isn't my experience with the IFB churches my family and I were part of. I can travel out of state, visit a church my pastor isn't familiar with and still be with my group if I wanted too. I mean, I would share that with my pastor, since he always prefered to know such things, but still...if an IFB church is what I'm looking for, I can find one. It would be my denomination, officially or not. If I fill out legal documents, I would be writing Independent, Fundamental, Baptist in the empty blank requesting my religious or denomination belief.

But again, I don't want to repeat that. However, I would like to say thank you for answering what protocols your church has in place to handle abuse. I appreciate you answering that with details. Is it possible to ask one final question that your reply prompted? 

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I am more than happy to answer any genuine questions, but the repeating of answered argument is not discussion. So go right ahead and I will do my best.

Before I do though, I will suggest to you that the reason you can find great similarity in Independent Baptist Churches is not because of a lack of independence but it is due to a common "rulebook" - the Bible.

My church tries to follow what the Bible says. As a result we have certain defining points.

The Independent Baptist Church 45km north west of where I am likewise tries to follow what the Bible says. As does the IB church 65km west of here, and the IB church 70km north of here, and the one that is 35 km south of here.

There are plenty of differences between us, but because we all try to follow the Bible, the essentials are all pretty close.

But we are totally 100% independent from one another. I cannot tell them how to do things, and they cannot tell me how to do things.

Basically, we have just come to very similar conclusion because we are using the same basic material - the Bible.

That in fact should be a great comfort - that many different churches have come to the same conclusion EVEN THOUGH there is no collusion, no ruling body or influence, and no boss man telling us all what to do (aside from God, through His Word of course).

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2 minutes ago, DaveW said:

I have to ask, why does it offend you so much that modesty is mentioned in this way?

The actual quote where the term is used is:


There is no implication that it is blaming the woman if she is not modest and is attacked.

There is no implication that dressing with modesty will keep the woman from being attacked (note the use of "less likely").

There is no implication that being immodest is the cause of such attacks.

But please let me ask you this - if a man is intent on making such an attack, is he more likely to attack a woman who is dressed immodestly or is he more likely to attack a woman who is dressed modestly?

The line in particular that is quoted above is simply good advice, not some sort of judgemental attack.

It seems to me that you are simply overreacting to what is a very reasonable statement.

If I am wrong, then please point out to me where in his statement it forces the blame onto the woman?

And also please keep in mind that I am absolutely 100% for criminal charges to be brought against any man who attacks any woman (or child). It is never justified for a man to attack a woman or child, just as it is never justified for a woman to attack a man or child, and it is never justified for a man to attack another man, or a woman to attack another woman, etc. Any such cases should be investigated by the proper authorities and if cause is found for charges and criminal proceeding to be commenced.

















 

 

I wouldn't say referencing modesty offends me. No, it concerns me. Why? Because, respectfully, there is literally NO data to suggest clothing of any kind plays an active role in sexual assault. 

I'm not referencing shaming a female victim, although that is a very common practice in society as a whole. No, why it raises a "red flag", so to speak, is that to even mention "modesty" or clothing in response to what was asked tells me that the person speaking is not educated on sexual assault. 

Clothing doesn't play a factor, at all. Those with sexual abuse and trauma response training would know this. It's the basics. The only time clothing should ever be mentioned is for an ongoing case of sexual assault to either help identify a perpetrator in some situations, or because certain articles of clothing are being gathered for evidence during a rape kit by professionals responding to a crime. 

The mere mention of "modesty" is disheartening, because it could suggest no training or knowledge on the subject. Does that make sense? 

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4 minutes ago, DaveW said:

I am more than happy to answer any genuine questions, but the repeating of answered argument is not discussion. So go right ahead and I will do my best.

Fair enough. My question: Do you think most current IFB churches have similar protocols in place such as your church? I ask this, because it's a legitimate concern when I'm not aware of any abuse prevention curriculum or courses IFB institutions offer future pastors, so if the Bible is truly their only real rulebook, I'm not sure the likelihood of this being the case without the proper education.

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5 minutes ago, A Virtuous Woman said:

I wouldn't say referencing modesty offends me. No, it concerns me. Why? Because, respectfully, there is literally NO data to suggest clothing of any kind plays an active role in sexual assault. 

I'm not referencing shaming a female victim, although that is a very common practice in society as a whole. No, why it raises a "red flag", so to speak, is that to even mention "modesty" or clothing in response to what was asked tells me that the person speaking is not educated on sexual assault. 

Clothing doesn't play a factor, at all. Those with sexual abuse and trauma response training would know this. It's the basics. The only time clothing should ever be mentioned is for an ongoing case of sexual assault to either help identify a perpetrator in some situations, or because certain articles of clothing are being gathered for evidence during a rape kit by professionals responding to a crime. 

The mere mention of "modesty" is disheartening, because it could suggest no training or knowledge on the subject. Does that make sense? 

I think that if someone is going to be enough of a horrible person to assault someone, they’ll do it no matter what they’re wearing, because if you were already thinking about assauling people then you’ve already got issues you need to deal with. The thing that I don’t really get about modesty and now in relation to this topic, is why does it matter? I understand that we’re supposed to dress modestly in order to be pleasing to the lord and to follow the Bible, but that doesn’t have anything to do with a sexual assault case. And I don’t have very much experience with churches but you see “victim blaming” all over society. Assuming the woman is at fault because she wasn’t dressing modestly. Isn’t it each persons own responsibility to control themselves, no matter what another is wearing? 

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54 minutes ago, DaveW said:

I don't have a problem and have answered the question three times now.

Any instance of sexual abuse in the church that I am currently a member of will have the proper authorities involved to investigate it as a criminal act. If I have to make it this plain - it will be reported to the police for a full legal investigation.

However, as I have repeatedly said, it is not possible for any one person to answer the question in the way that the OP wants, because of the simple fact that we are independent Churches.

The fact that the OP in particular will not accept that as a valid answer is what leads to us being suspicious. To allay those suspicions the OP needs to provide some sort of evidence that he does not have nefarious motives, because it look that way right way to me and to others here.

Oh I’m not saying you didn’t answer the question. The vibe I’m getting (and I’ve gotten this from my friends as well) is that questions are bad. I just don’t understand why. I love asking questions. The more you ask the more you know, and I want to know as much as possible. That’s why we have brains! 🙂 

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To say clothing doesn't play a factor at all is, I respectfully say, just plain wrong.

And to say that there is "no data" is also just plain wrong.

You are just not looking at the right studies.

Can I suggest that you in fact are the one who has not got the proper training on this subject?

Pro 6:25-29
(25)  Lust not after her beauty in thine heart; neither let her take thee with her eyelids.
(26)  For by means of a whorish woman a man is brought to a piece of bread: and the adulteress will hunt for the precious life.
(27)  Can a man take fire in his bosom, and his clothes not be burned?
(28)  Can one go upon hot coals, and his feet not be burned?
(29)  So he that goeth in to his neighbour's wife; whosoever toucheth her shall not be innocent.
 

Mat 5:27-28
(27)  Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery:
(28)  But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.
 

Jas 1:14-15
(14)  But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
(15)  Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.
 

This is how a man's heart works.

But a man does not have to act upon it:

Gal 5:16
(16)  This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.
 

So there is your information and there is your study material.

As to your extra question - this is exactly what I mean - you want me to comment on other churches about something of which I have no knowledge, no responsibility, and no authority. This is not productive discussion, this is you searching for someone to make a statement which you can oppose.

6 minutes ago, A Virtuous Woman said:

Fair enough. My question: Do you think most current IFB churches have similar protocols in place such as your church? I ask this, because it's a legitimate concern when I'm not aware of any abuse prevention curriculum or courses IFB institutions offer future pastors, so if the Bible is truly their only real rulebook, I'm not sure the likelihood of this being the case without the proper education.

What does it matter what I think about it? I have in fact already answered that in about my second post. I said that most IB churches that I know would think the same, and any that don't should be investigated.

But, no matter how you slice it, INDEPENDENT BAPTIST CHURCHES ARE INDEPENDENT AND NO ONE PERSON CAN SPEAK FOR ALL OF THEM....

 

And how about our newbie questioners go into the introduction area and give us a run down of your affiliations, the churches that you attend, and reason why you are here? Give us a reason to trust you, because right now it looks like you are here with a definite agenda.

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1 minute ago, deborahofthebible said:

I think that if someone is going to be enough of a horrible person to assault someone, they’ll do it no matter what they’re wearing, because if you were already thinking about assauling people then you’ve already got issues you need to deal with. The thing that I don’t really get about modesty and now in relation to this topic, is why does it matter? I understand that we’re supposed to dress modestly in order to be pleasing to the lord and to follow the Bible, but that doesn’t have anything to do with a sexual assault case. And I don’t have very much experience with churches but you see “victim blaming” all over society. Assuming the woman is at fault because she wasn’t dressing modestly. Isn’t it each persons own responsibility to control themselves, no matter what another is wearing? 

Yes, and yes. Sexual assault is about power and control, not sexual attraction or if the victim is appealing to the perpetrator. The only things a perpetrator finds appealing is the fact he feels he has power over another and can control that same person. It's not really about sex, it's that they have the ability to hurt another. Sex is just the weapon they use to accomplish that. 

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Ok this has gone on long enough. We have rules for posting on these forums, rules that the new people in this thread have obviously not read. Here is the one pertinent to this thread:

We will not allow the following
c) Members that come just to argue doctrine instead of fellowship.

I am locking this thread for the above stated reason. Any further attempt by anyone to start a new thread on the same subject will be cause to ban that person.

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