Saturday, June 26, 2010

Dr. Ergun Caner - Liberty Investigation Complete

Liberty University has apparently released the result of its investigation: all that they are willing to affirm about his background is that he was a Muslim and that he converted as a teenager, something virtually all of Dr. Caner's critics have been willing to acknowledge. Also, while apparently they are not going to keep him on as dean, Liberty apparently will keep him on as a professor.

There are some folks who view this as exoneration (link). My thoughts to those folks: what are you thinking? When the investigation agrees exactly with his critics and the result of the investigation is, apparently, a demotion ... how exactly is that exoneration? I'd love to know. (so would Wade Burleson)

I'm glad to hear that Dr. Caner was not fired - that he will still be able to provide for his family. I am sorry that we have yet to see any public repentance from Dr. Caner, but perhaps in time we will see that.

I also hope that going forward, Dr. Caner will try to be more careful that his speeches, lectures, and sermons have a greater regard for the truth. Indeed, may all professing Christians (not only those who become the objects of an investigation) hold the truth in high regard!

- TurretinFan

38 comments:

hutchman said...

At least the students appear to have their heads screwed on right and at least know what "exonerated" means:

http://www.libertystudentnews.com/?p=520

hutchman said...

Update. The Lynchburg 11pm news covered the story. Lasted about 1 minute.

Called him "Dean", never called him President of the Seminary.

Main punch line was the investigation found no evidence that he didn't grow up as a Muslim (as if that was ever the main problem).

Said they did find some contradictory statements but didn't elaborate on them at all.

No mention of not being born in Turkey ... growing up in Ohio vs Muslim majority country ... being trained in Jihad or any thing like that.

It was more benign than the LU Statement that was released.

hutchman said...

Link to story 11pm story that aired on WSET:

http://www.wset.com/news/stories/0610/749644.html

natamllc said...

I would like to parse the Liberty statement CAPITALIZING my parse:

The statement made today by Liberty University after reviewing the findings of a four man Investigative body:

” After a thorough and exhaustive review of Dr. Ergun Caner’s public statements, a committee consisting of four members of Liberty University’s Board of Trustees has concluded that Dr. Caner has made factual statements that are self-contradictory.

DR. CANER MADE FACTUAL STATEMENTS THAT CONTRADICTED EACH OTHER. WE HAVE DISCOVERED PUBLIC PERSONAL FAMILY LEGAL DOCUMENTS THAT AFFIRM FACTUAL STATEMENTS HE HAS MADE AND THEN WE HAVE COMPARED THEM WITH TROUBLING PUBLIC VIDEO RECORDINGS AND WRITINGS THAT CONTRADICT THOSE PUBLIC PERSONAL FAMILY LEGAL DOCUMENTS. WE ALSO FIND AN INTERVIEW DONE BY A TURKISH NEWSGROUP, WHO EASILY COULD VERIFY FACTS BEING STATED THAT ALSO CONFIRM PUBLIC PERSONAL FAMILY LEGAL DOCUMENTS, DMV RECORDS WHICH CONTRADICT HIS PUBLIC VIDEO RECORDINGS AND WRITINGS. WE CHOOSE TO BELIEVE, AND NOW DR. CANER CONFIRMS THAT, THOSE PUBLIC PERSONAL FAMILY LEGAL DOCUMENTS, THE DMV RECORDS AND THE TURKISH NEWS REPORTER’S PUBLISHED ARTICLE ARE IN FACT FACTUAL, TRUE AND THE OTHERS ARE NOT.

However, the committee found no evidence to suggest that Dr. Caner was not a Muslim who converted to Christianity as a teenager, but, instead, found discrepancies related to matters such as dates, names and places of residence.

WE SEE DR. CANER CONFUSED HIS AUDIENCES ABOUT WHAT KIND OF MUSLIM HE REALLY IS. WE HAVE DETERMINED THAT HE IS NOT A DEVOUT JIHADIST OR TERRORIST, BUT, IN FACT, HE EMBELLISHED HIS STORY A BIT, WELL MORE THAN A LITTLE BIT, GETTING CAUGHT UP IN ALL THE ATTENTION OF THE MOMENTS, MOMENT BY MOMENT MOMENTS FROM THE WORLD PRESS AFTER 9/11 AND HE HAS TAKEN FULL RESPONSIBILITY FOR THAT, APOLOGIZING TO US, WHO ALSO WERE DUPED BY HIS EMBELLISHMENT STORIES AS WELL AS THE GENERAL PUBLIC. WE THINK MAYBE MOHAMED KHAN MAY NOT HAVE EXAGGERATED THE FACTS ABOUT HIM? WE COMPLETELY UNDERSTAND WHY MOHAMED KHAN WOULD ACCUSE DR. CANER OF BEING A X FAKE MUSLIM. DR. CANER SEES THAT NOW TOO. OUR INVESTIGATION HAS HELPED HIM CLEAR THAT UP IN HIS OWN MIND.

Dr. Caner has cooperated with the board committee and has apologized for the discrepancies and misstatements that led to this review.

DR. CANER IS A BIT HUMBLED, SORRY AND IS INDEED STRUGGLING WITH HIS OWN WEAKNESS, PRIDE, AS WE ALL DO FROM TIME TO TIME WHEN WE ARE CONFRONTED WITH EVIDENCES TO THE CONTRARY. NONE OF US CAME HERE WITH STELLAR STONES TO THROW AT DR. CANER. WE ARE MINDFUL OF THE LORD’S ADMONITION, “he who is without sin cast the first stone”. WE WANT THE VERY BEST RESTORATION FOR DR. CANER NOW THAT HE HAS COME CLEAN AND REPENTED TO US.

Dr. Caner’s current contractual term as Dean of Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary expires on June, 30, 2010.

DR. CANER HAS BROUGHT THIS EMBARRASSMENT UPON HIMSELF AND HIS FAMILY AND THIS INSTITUTION AND THEREFORE WE CANNOT ALLOW HIM TO CONTINUE IN SUCH A HIGH POSITION OF HONOR AND TRUST AS THE DEAN AND PRESIDENT OF LIBERTY UNIVERSITY’S THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY. IT IS NOT LOGICAL THAT HE SHOULD HAVE SUCH AN HONOR NOW THAT WE HAVE A CLEARER UNDERSTANDING OF THE FACTS.

THEREFORE: Dr. Caner will no longer serve as Dean of Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary.

The university has offered, and Dr. Caner has accepted, an employment contract for the 2010-2011 academic year. Dr. Caner will remain on the faculty of Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary as a professor.”

WE RECOGNIZE DR. CANER IS A GIFTED MAN. HE IS QUITE A STORY TELLER. HIS STORY TELLING IS ALWAYS FULL OF EMOTION AND MOVES HIS AUDIENCES WELL. WE WISH TO HELP HIM DEVELOP THIS GIFT AND SO WE ARE GOING TO ASK HIM TO CONTINUE ON AS A PROFESSOR. HE WILL BE MONITORED. HE WILL BE UNDER A WATCHFUL REVIEW MORE CLOSELY NOW THAT THIS MATTER IS BEHIND US AND WE WISH HIM WELL IN THE RESTORATION THAT FOLLOWS HIS SINCERE REPENTANCE, WHICH HE HAS BEGUN.

William Watson Birch said...

You, James White, and some others have put a lot of time and effort in exposing Caner's embellishments, inaccuracies and lies. Now that a formal investigation has proven that you all were right all along (though they certainly never stated it as such), I want to publicly thank you all for all your hard work. Truth should prevail. The integrity of the Gospel is at stake.

Personally, I think he should have been fired, but that is just my opinion. I was heart-sick all night last night over this mess. I'm angered, hurt and distrustful of anything he may say or teach. The only reason he has apologized is because he was "caught". Is that true repentance?

You and I both know how much we disagree on, but we agree on a lot of things as well, and we both want truth to prevail. Anyway, I want to thank you (and White and others) for being bold enough to call a spade a spade. God bless.

Turretinfan said...

Mr. Birch,

Thanks for your kind words. I am glad we both want the truth to prevail.

NatAmLLC:

I understand your reason for using the mechanism you used. May I suggest using italics or bold instead of all caps next time?

-TurretinFan

natamllc said...

TF, I would if you could guide me.

I just don't have the smarts to convert this type into italics or bold.

What have I missed?

I have this empty box. I type and it all comes out the same.

I go to a blank word doc and type using italics and bold and cut and paste over here and post and it comes out all one type and point size?

I know there must be a way to do as you have suggested? I am just too stupid to figure it out, but be of good cheer, I am a humble learner, so got any ideas? :)

natamllc said...

Now that you have opened that door, what does this mean at the bottom of the combox?

"....You can use some HTML tags, such as b, i, a...".

Pilgrimsarbour said...

natamllc,

E-mail me and I will explain how to use a couple of the HTML codes to get boldface and italics in your combox posts. I can't actually explain it in this combox post because my instructions would be read as computer commands.

Pilgrimsarbour@aol.com

PA

Strong Tower said...

Wow! This will really boost LU's credibility. I am sure everyone will attend there once they realize they can totally fail an exam and get a B.

Coram Deo said...

If I wandered into an interview at "Random Corporation A" and proceeded to make all sorts of false claims about myself in order to boost my image and standing with the goal of accruing prestige, position, and power - which goals I subsequently achieved - and it later came to light that I had both lied, and continued to lie about myself, I wonder if they'd keep me on the payroll?

I think there's even a word for that type of behavior, but I just can't quite put my finger on it...

In Christ,
CD

zog said...

I agree with Mr. Birch about the effort you put forward to find the truth. And maybe LU did the right thing by letting him keep a job. He received justice and mercy as opposed to only justice. The older I get the more I love mercy.

Anonymous said...

Why isn't anyone asking Emir Caner's employers to do the same for him? He is just as guilty as Ergun. These two are impostors. Charlatans, they made a lot of money by lying.

Just type in Emir Canerin Youtube and see the video where he says that "God's good humor brought an ex-muslim from TURKEY to the foothills of the blue ridge mountains". I thought Emir was born in Ohio??

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bz5vJqdzcto

Turretinfan said...

Anonymous:

It's sad to see that there may be some similar issues with Emir.

-TurretinFan

Turretinfan said...

NatAmLLC:

Here is a link to some instructions, if you have not already received them from PilgrimsArbour (link to instructions).

-TurretinFan

Gerard said...

TF,

I have to respectfully disagree and challenge your statement that you are "glad they did not fire Ergun because he has to provide for his family."

Brother, do you know how much money he made on all of the books, speaking engagements TV appearances all because he took advantage of the tragedy and horror of 911. I am from NYC and was there that infamous day. I know a few people who died in those towers. My father in laws best friend is no longer here and my father in law is tormented because that morning he was suppose to have breakfast with his friend but he canceled. If they would have met for breakfast he would not have been in the building. Tormented. That is just one story. I worked 15 blocks from the WTC. I can still smell the stench that permeated the area for months.

911 was in my backyard and we lived in fear and uncertainty and anger and horror. Now these two clowns Ergun and Emir Caner saw this not as a tragedy but as a stepping stone to promote themselves to the limelight by making up a fictitious story and used people's pain and sorrow to make huge amounts of money. As we would say in Brooklyn, Fire the Bum!! Please don't feel sorry for him, this is not a mistake or a mishap, for 10 years they have been living a lie.

Brother, how can you honestly say that you are glad that they did not fire him? He basically used Jesus Christ and the Gospel as a cover for his lies. I am just wondering why nobody is putting pressure on Emir's employers as well. He is just as guilty.

Would you enroll in Ergun's classes if you went to Liberty after knowing he is a pathological liar? I know my words are strong but I fear they are not strong enough. We are talking about the bedrock of Christianity. Jesus is the Way THE TURTH, The Life. Ergun Caner and Emir Caner's whole ministry is built not on Christ but on Lies. And Satan is the Father of lies. If we walk in the light as he is in the light we have fellowship with one another. For the past 10 years Ergun and Emir have been walking in Darkness and robbing Christians of their monies while doing it. I pray that they fire both of them. I am sure they have plenty of money to spare off of all the books they sold.

I love our site and your writings and I even own a copy of Institutes of Elenctic Theology :) but I have to respectfully disagree with you on this one my brother.

Blessings

G.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bz5vJqdzcto

Pilgrimsarbour said...

Gerard,

I understand what you're saying and I don't necessarily disagree with you. I find myself conflicted thinking that I would rather Caner be able to take care of his family than that burden be thrust upon the Church, and also that I would rather he not be teaching at all.

You have made claims about his financial status. I would like to know how it is you know that he is, in your view, apparently quite wealthy from the sale of his books. I personally know several excellent authors of theology and religion, and believe me, they will tell you that they make almost nothing on even their most popular works.

I am just wondering if you can support your claims to the Caners having some kind of vast wealth stored up that they can afford to retire.

Blessings in Christ,

Pilgrimsarbour

Gerard said...

You are right Pilgrim I can't provide financial statements on how much money he made on books. Maybe I should be more careful and maybe he gave all that money to charity and did not take a dime. Maybe all the money he made on honorariums when he spoke at churches were given to charity. Maybe he paid all of his own travel expenses when he went out as guest speakers. maybe he gave his paycheck to the church.

Whether it was a nickel or a million dollars, he profited on lies. Lies to the church.

Turretinfan said...

Gerard:

Only God knows Caner's heart, but I didn't get the sense that his motivation in embellishing his autobiography was personal gain.

If I had that sense, I suppose I would feel less compassion on him, his wife, and their two young children.

-TurretinFan

Gerard said...

TF,

Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. So we to know Ergun Caners heart as well. He showed it to the world. Not sure how you can see that his lying was not for personal gain? Please tell me then what was the purpose of his lying? Who benefited from it? Who became the President of Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary as a result of his lies? Again brother I beg to differ with you. Is it really mercy to keep him on? What kind of mercy is that to the people who gave money to support a charlatan? Someone paid his salary, someone paid his airfare and hotel expenses while travelled the country spewing out his lies. I guess lying is trendy today and not really that serious of a sin to warrant a severe consequences.

Do you think that Ted Haggard should have been demoted to an Associate Pastor? What about his wife and children?

Do you think that Bernie Madoff should have been demoted instead of imprisoned? He lied to the whole country and many suffered for his lies? What about his wife and children?

What about the Enron scandal? Should those men have been demoted and not fired and imprisoned?


Are we going to categorize sin now as acceptable and unacceptable? Are we going to make excuses for Christian leaders who build their whole ministry on lies and then cop out by saying "God knows his heart"?

What drew me to Reformed Theology two years ago after being under Arminian theology was the caliber of truth that I saw in men who adhered to the doctrines of Grace. (Not saying all arminian leaders are not walking in truth).

I am sure Ergun Caner can find another job. McDonalds, Walmart, Lowes, Home Depot, Construction Laborer, Security Guard Companies are always hiring and thousands of Americans feed their family working at these places. But maybe that kind of labor is beneath him? Maybe he can work for Home Land Security since he is an expert on Islam? I am sure that his children will not starve if Liberty fires him. Many Americans are out of work and surviving.

If Ergun Caner is as creative and talented as they say I am sure he will do fine. Maybe one day he can teach and preach again. I think that he needs to be fired and make a public confession of repentance and take some time for restoration and then I am sure he would be a better teacher and preacher in the long run.

Gerard

Gerard said...

One more thing. We are not talking about Joe Christian, we are talking about a Christian Leader who is known nation wide by believers and non believers. James says that those who teach will incur a stricter judgement. Ergun Caner is calling America and Southern Baptists to repentance and Telling muslims that Jesus is the truth in front of the whole world. Yet he is a liar? I am not saying condemn him to hell. I am saying fire him. God will provide for his family will he not? What are we showing the world as the Body of Christ? That we reward Christian Leaders when they lie?

natamllc said...

test

This is to help me comprehend and understand using bold lettering, underlining and italics in my comments from now on!


The statement made today by Liberty University after reviewing the findings of a four man Investigative body:

After a thorough and exhaustive review of Dr. Ergun Caner’s public statements, a committee consisting of four members of Liberty University’s Board of Trustees has concluded that Dr. Caner has made factual statements that are self-contradictory.

Dr. Caner made factual statements that contradicted each other.

I think I got it!

Thanks Pil for the offer. I think I was just being lazy and TF pushed me hard enough so I got off my fat lazy brain and learned something I should have before!

Thanks TF!!

natamllc said...

Gerard,

Your frustrations are felt with me.

I realize that sin is sin; and the gravity of sin, if we were to use "God's" standard would require each of us to experience the same sort of punishment as you prescribe here for the Caner brothers.

If you violate one jot or tittle of the Law you are guilty of violating all of the Law! Ouch!!

One thing I am now pondering more and more as the last several days sink into my ponderer is the answer to the plans of the heart of Liberty University.

Consider these verses:


Pro 16:1 The plans of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue is from the LORD.
Pro 16:2 All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes, but the LORD weighs the spirit.
Pro 16:3 Commit your work to the LORD, and your plans will be established.
Pro 16:4 The LORD has made everything for its purpose, even the wicked for the day of trouble.
Pro 16:5 Everyone who is arrogant in heart is an abomination to the LORD; be assured, he will not go unpunished.
Pro 16:6 By steadfast love and faithfulness iniquity is atoned for, and by the fear of the LORD one turns away from evil.
Pro 16:7 When a man's ways please the LORD, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.
Pro 16:8 Better is a little with righteousness than great revenues with injustice.
Pro 16:9 The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps.
Pro 16:10 An oracle is on the lips of a king; his mouth does not sin in judgment.

In them you will find that God is not blind to what the Caner brothers have done, nor is He blind to what each of us has done.

I want to give to the Liberty University authorities the benefit of the doubt trusting the Scriptures above over my own feelings and emotions that have certainly been stirred up as hot as yours.

I hope this comment will give you some comfort and consolation in that after being pushed by worldly forces, Liberty went ahead and planned an investigation and brought forth findings, which we are indeed glad for, and a remedy that conforms to the Word of God.

We only hope the Caner brothers will indeed grab hold of the process repentance will lead them through and they will bear the fruits thereof?

Pilgrimsarbour said...

I feel the weight of Gerard's comments. Like TF, I have gotten the impression that Caner embellished his story, to his way of thinking, for the sake of the gospel. As a former Arminian (as am I) I imagine Gerard can relate to the Arminian angst of having to "win souls for Christ;" that is, "it's up to us to bring them into the Kingdom!" It is a particularly strong temptation for Arminians to embellish things in order to "close the deal" with the sinner.

The blessing of embracing the doctrines of grace is being able to leave these things entirely in God's capable hands. So we share the gospel with everyone, and whoever the Spirit moves toward Christ is who He wills it to be. The results of our obedience to share the gospel are His will to be done.

After further thought, I think Dr. Caner should lose his teaching position, barring any confession and repentance, which is a big consideration.

Gerard is right. God will provide for the family. And maybe Caner will have to take up some other job in a different field. To what degree are we to shield someone's family from the consequences of sins committed by the head of that family?

Gerard said...

natamllc


you said

"I realize that sin is sin; and the gravity of sin, if we were to use "God's" standard would require each of us to experience the same sort of punishment as you prescribe here for the Caner brothers.

If you violate one jot or tittle of the Law you are guilty of violating all of the Law! Ouch!!"

So who' standard should we use then? Liberty's? The world's?

So you are suggesting that we refrain from judging sin because in it we condemn ourselves? So then the Liberty Board is in danger of God's judgement because they judged Ergun Caner and found him to be guilty?

I am just trying to understand your logic here? So mercy overrides accountability? So we cannot judge someone's actions because we are in danger of the same judgement?

Did not God forgive David. Yet the son still died, his house was still divided and he still suffered the consequences of his sin, even after God showed him Mercy. Like I said, I am not condemning Caner to hell. But they should fire him. I do not think that is a lack of mercy for suffering consequences of our actions. He does not deserve to be a Seminary Professor or have the standards dropped and liars are welcome? I have heard no public confession from either Caner brother?

Listen I want and need God's mercy cause I have my own issues. I am not saying caner does not deserve mercy because none of us do, nor saying don't show mercy. But my point is that keeping him on is not mercy. What message is this giving to the world. Sin's consequences are really not that bad. You just get demoted and still collect a pay check. Sounds like Emergent Church Theology to me.

Gerard said...

Pilgrimsarbour,

Glad to see another ex-arminian :) My experience is get them in hook or crook. As long as souls are saved it does not matter who they got there. Like I said it was TRUTH that drew me to Reformed Theology. The truth of Sola Scriptura, not methods of man. So I see the double talk and the dodging the issue, and the sugar coating of sin in the Liberty Statement that I have seen in my old church leadership where deceptive practices were the norm to cover up leadership mistakes so that their good name would not be tarnished. But in the process it was only the good name of Jesus that was tarnished.

I pray Ergun repents! Listen if David could pen Psalm 51 after his hideous crimes there is hope for Ergun Caner. But he still needs to be fired, repent and restored.

Gerard said...

My Last thought.

I think that unless Ergun Caner becomes a Calvinist he should never preach again!! :) LOL!!!

zog said...

In raising my own children I often struggle with the justice and mercy question. When I was a new daddy it was 100% justice and I ran the house like Camp Lejeune. I guess as I have gotten older and seen my own wickedness I have fallen in love with God's love and His mercy to me.

I too was a Bob Jones, fundamental, arminian and nothing made me happier than seeing justice in full bloom. People would tell me that God is love and I would quickly remind them that He is also a God of justice. Maybe justice in Mr. Caner's case would be the most merciful thing.

Turretinfan said...

Gerard:

You make some good points, and had he been fired I don't think I could have criticized Liberty for that action. One thing, I would point out: a demotion is not a reward. He's not being rewarded for what he did, he's being punished for it.

- TurretinFan

natamllc said...

Gerard,

You asked me: "... So who' standard should we use then? Liberty's? The world's? ...."

I am not sure either one of us, you or me, or really, any commenter in here, unless they are a part of the Board of Trustees of LU, one of the four judges retained for the purpose of developing findings and or recommendations as a remedy, has a place in offering a standard whereby Dr. Caner's error is prosecuted and rectified?

This University, LU, is a private institution and their situation, though it went wider than within the scope of LU, because Dr. Caner has kept up his own critical review of who he is and what he was about and is about, as both a member of Thomas Road's and Dean of Liberty BTS, not only to Christian gatherings within and without their immediate circles and audiences, he has also been interviewed within national and international venues as well, is really an internal matter for them.

It's their call and housekeeping that is at work here, not ours.

Their decision to demote Dr. Caner is privately and internally, their business, even though they have chosen to publish their narrow remedy to the general public. We don't know all the internal details, private remedies and hallmarks set by them as prerequisites for Dr. Caner teaching as a professor now?

We, as Christian judges, prescribed in the Scriptures, 1 Cor. 6, can offer our own perspectives as you have in here. If Liberty opened up a link for comments such as we are offering, I certainly would have offered some remedy as I suppose you would have too?

I read one commentary yesterday that proffered that this remedy is a "first" stage in a process that will eventually cause Dr. Caner to resign and go elsewhere for employment. I thought that was wisdom. What do you think about that idea?

Again, and really, my point is this, that none of us have an inside seat with the authorities involved in this internal matter that Dr. Caner has created for himself and the University so our opinion of what sort of remedy they should come up with is just one of many.

The plans are man's, the answer is the Lord's!

Here are some more verses I thought, at least, applied to Dr. Caner's situation:

Ecc 5:6 Let not your mouth lead you into sin, and do not say before the messenger that it was a mistake. Why should God be angry at your voice and destroy the work of your hands?
Ecc 5:7 For when dreams increase and words grow many, there is vanity; but God is the one you must fear.
Ecc 5:8 If you see in a province the oppression of the poor and the violation of justice and righteousness, do not be amazed at the matter, for the high official is watched by a higher, and there are yet higher ones over them.

Gerard said...

natamllc, fair enough. I see your point. I still say fire him! :) But you are right. God sees and will judge. I just listened to a sermon by Piper on Romans 2 about God's wrath and those who are unrepentant and hard hearted. How they are storing up wrath. But that God does not judge right away but gives time to repent. His goodness leads to repentance. I see that God's methods are better then mine or liberty's and I pray that Caner sees this as God's kindness and repents.

natamllc said...

Gerard,

you asked more: I am just trying to understand your logic here? So mercy overrides accountability? So we cannot judge someone's actions because we are in danger of the same judgement?

I hope my most recent post above gives you a better sense of my understanding and logic? If not, maybe answering your other questions will?

Yes, mercy does triumph over judgment. To the degree one is held to account, well, again, in his case, we would have to know the internal standards, those policies and procedures he was violating, their standards, policies and procedures that Liberty, Thomas Road's and Dr. Caner agreed too before we could say he received more of one than another, mercy or justice?

When you read Dr. Elmer Towne's standard for judging Dr. Caner or any of the professors at LU, I would think liars would fit in quite well within their policies and procedures? :)

What he got, in my view, was, he got a lot of mercy and a little justice. If he dies in his sins, he will only get justice. If he dies in Christ, he will only get mercy!

I, in no way use mercy to override accountability.

Accountability is a law that has a larger footprint to me than judgment.

One can make a judgment not to accept the standards of accountability for the position Dr. Caner held at Thomas Road's or Liberty. Apparently the judgments made gave Dr. Caner very little accountability to be truthful when managing his accounts at both institutions. Who would we want to fault for that? The deceased Dr. Falwell Sr., who retained Dr. Caner as Dean and President of Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary? He sure got thrust into celebrity after 9/11 and there does seem to me to be a tint of motive that was not noble in his promotion to the honors he now has been demoted from?

As for that last question, I would say as much as your question implies.

There is a very fine line and being so fine as it is, I don't trust myself to cross it and make those judgments.

In the multitude of counselors safety and wisdom reside. I would not want to go it alone and this forum here stands a good test over the time I have been commenting in here as a safe bet and place to make judgments one way or the other. There is an evenness and fairness and wisdom and grace that has captured my attention now these several years that comes from this blog! I would that there would be more blogs like this one!! :)

Strong Tower said...

"I didn't get the sense that his motivation in embellishing his autobiography was personal gain."

In the culture of heroes, you didn't think that his personal gain, prestige and whatever else was part of the goal? What, you think that the Oscar is given to people who don't care to act? It is a requirement that the "heroes" are idolized. It may not be American Idol, it may well be only Evangelical Idol, but the fact is Its Only Entertainment. Image is the promotion of the product. The Finneyesque carnival of the revialism of this wing of the church, if we can even call it that, breads stars and the stars are necessary for the program. Those who rise to the top, TF, do so for the limelight. Give it whatever name you want, it is filthy lucre and Ergun is not fit to fill the pulpit.

Which brings up a question. Along with the token demotion that was more of an endorsement of Caner's tactics than a punishment, will they ban him from public forums, from the pulpit? Dr. White, I think is far more critical than you are and rightly so.

Ergun, if he did not deserve to be fired, deserved no better than to be made a custodian of dirty toilets, because he surely hasn't been the costodian of the truth and we find not repentance on his part or the part of LU in this sordid affair.

If Caner had have done this in a civilian capacity, say he lied on a Federal Form, continued the pretense, he would go to a Federal Prison. The crime is greater, not less, when one defrauds the church, I would think.

LU has absolutely disqualified itself for any level of credibility.

And a hearty thanks to Steve Hays for his emphasis that the crime is even more LU's fault because they are the contractors of these kinds of hit men.

Pilgrimsarbour said...

Strong Tower,

I think you make some good points as well regarding the culture of celebrity that seems to drive that wing of the Church. It may be, indeed, that Caner has been caught up in that whole thing, perhaps without really realising it. The capacity for the human heart to deceive itself is (by my own experience) sometimes overwhelming.

On the other hand, I would like you to consider what I had said above. Consider that those who do not have a Reformed understanding naturally gravitate toward an overemphasis on man's responsibility in the Great Commission. I suggest that, in addition to the celebrity culture nonsense, there is an inherent weakness in non-Reformed theology which sees the gospel as needing "a little help" from time to time, depending upon the age in which we live. Hence, we develop the seeker-friendly service, as one example. Instead of calling people to repentance, we want to make them comfortable in Christ. It's 180 degrees from Scripture, but I suggest that Caner believed he was helping the gospel to reach more people by making his story more compelling. I choose not to believe that he is "in it for the money," unless it comes to light later on that I'm wrong about that, at which time I will gladly admit my error to you.

Blessings in Christ,

PA

thomastwitchell said...

PA-

I actually agree with you. It is a package deal. It is hard to assign blame or motive. I realize the intention is "good hearted." That makes it all the more likely however that the means and methods and the payout will be a compromise of the Scripture rather than it upholding.

Again, I agree that Caner was well lead astray by the culture, yet one cannot divorce his congnizance of that very culture from him or he would be all the more to be pitied as a dupe. He is not the first, he is an late comer to the games being played. His mentors, such as Falwell, know the politics and payoffs of showmanship. It is a game that has been going on so long that it is viewed as the normative practice and even the Reformed/Calvinist camp has not be immune.

That is why I have said that LU is just as much defrauder of the crowds as he is and is an illegitimate judge of its own child.

Strong Tower said...

Hey TF, what happened to the check box to subscribe to comments. If you have disabled it somehow, could you enable it again?

Turretinfan said...

I did not disable it, as far as I know. I'm not sure why it is not showing up for you.

Pilgrimsarbour said...

I am in substantial agreement with thomastwitchell as well.

By the way, I did not mean to imply that Reformed folks are free from cultural influences; we do, in fact, fall into culture traps from time to time as we are all sinners. In this case, though, I think there is more of a propensity for the pull of the culture of celebrity amongst Arminian believers in general, and Caner and LU in particular.