Did He Do It? – Reconciliation and Summary

Bill has reached out to all those that he has been aware of that have concerns with him, a process that continues. Many have fully forgiven him.  Others have laid demands on him in exchange for offered forgiveness, such as “renounce all of your teachings publicly” and, “confess publicly that you are evil and your ministry is evil”.  In one case Bill and a mediator traveled thousands of miles to a foreign country to meet with an individual who was offended, to ask for forgiveness from her and her parents.  That forgiveness was granted, in the presence of witnesses.  The same individual subsequently began attacking Bill again in public without making further attempts to contact him with her concerns, as commanded in Matthew 18.  There is a point one begins to develop a keen sense of frustration that there is literally nothing that can be done.  It appears in those cases the primary problem is not his personal offenses, but rather what he stands for and teaches.

Members of this committee have all taken hits on Bill’s watch. Some have been sent away from headquarters, demoted, had our children passed over for service, unfulfilled financial promises, felt abandoned in our hour of greatest need.  We have watched Bill and the ministry for over 40 years, some of us have lived at Headquarters for years, traveled the world with him, spent countless counseling hours with him, including many late night hours, watched him as he interacted with and counseled others, got to field questions from investigators who were sure he was abusing us.  None of us are being paid for what we are doing.  We came to Bill’s defense because we still appreciate all he has done for us, we know who he really is, and knew that most of what was being alleged had to be false.  Not one of us is personally aware of anything that even approximates the sex related allegations, including “harassment”, nor have heard this from people we have worked with, nor from the families of the same.

Please Be Patient – God Is Not Finished With Mr.Gothard Yet

PBPGINFWMYThose of us attending Basic Youth Conflicts seminars in the 1970s recall with joy the little “graduation pin” that was presented to each of us at the conclusion of that week long program. The letters stand for “Please Be Patient – God Is Not Finished With Me Yet”. It stressed that we are all on a journey of grace with the Lord.  Even those of us that feel that we are fully committed to Him will find how untrue that is from time to time, how far short we actually fall of what we should be.  This is as true for Bill as for any of those of us that listened to him over the years.  Yet God is patient with us, and extends His grace to us over and over, to pick us up, dust us off, and put us on the road again, running with renewed strength the race He has set before us.

So, God is not finished with Bill . . . yet.  May his latter years be full of the grace and strength of the Lord, and may he be a blessing to many in ways that he could only have hoped for before.

Visit previous in series, Did He Do It? – Some Facts

37 Comments

  1. M M
    October 30, 2015    

    I see the true fruits of repentance here. Anyone who would build a website to defend against dozens of accusations of harassment is certainly pure-hearted. Jesus would certainly be proud of all the people who are defending Bill who were not there when his accusers’ stories occurred. Forget not making little ones stumble: it’s important to protect the reputation of leaders–even when they have personally dragged their own reputation through the mud by secret, nonconsensual acts behind closed doors.

  2. Sam Sam
    October 30, 2015    

    I think it is great that a website has been developed to uncover the truth and be “the other side of the story” since we all know there are two sides to every story. I was a part of IBLP for many many years during the height of the ATI program, and well connected with over 300 students that served during the 80’s and 90’s. One question many of us have is this, and maybe you and your team can add some clarity. And that is to answer the very question you asked in these posts… “Did he do it?” Has Bill admitted to any of the charges of touching these girls in the way they say he did? I’ve read his confession and it seems like the thing he confesses is emotionally defrauding many girls without realizing it. I can’t find anywhere where he specifically addresses the lingering hugs, private hand holding, lingering foot touching and rubbing, etc. It seems he believes his biggest sin was not meditating, however we all know that the sins which he did commit of not listening to counsel, being alone with women when he was forbidden to, and any physical touching were the greatest sins. Maybe Bill has publicly confessed these things and I missed it, maybe he didn’t do it, or maybe he did those things but truly believes he is innocent… do you know which of these it is?

  3. November 26, 2015    

    I believe it is time for the current IBLP leadership be petitioned in a Scriptural manner (first by an individual, then as a group if they do not respond) to extend forgiveness and reinstatement for Rev. Gothard as provided in Scripture: “restore such a one.”

    • Larne Gabriel Larne Gabriel
      December 11, 2015    

      Dr. Cosby, 1 John 1:9-10 states: “IF we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” The verse starts with a big “IF”, it doesn’t say because of our past accomplishment we are granted a “pass”, it says “IF we confess our sins” and that means all of our sins. Let me digress, Bill did not physically molests my late wife Ruth but he did emotionally, also called defrauding. I would suggest you read her story on Recovering Grace: http://www.recoveringgrace.org/2014/02/ruths-story/ This is just an earlier version of the same story with the other ATI era women, with the exception of one, which I have no problem believing either. His story as to whether he was a father figure to Ruth or dating her changed over the years depending on how much external pressure he was under. He latest story is he was dating her but that presents another problem for him because while her was “dating her”, he was also snoozing up to other women at the same time. Is that changing story the act of a repentant man? I could go on but will refrain because of the current pending lawsuit.

      My question to you is how do you justify reinstating Bill on the basis of the qualification requirement of 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1? In our 2014 Denver meeting with him he admitted twice he was unqualified, based on those two scriptures, in front of five witnesses including Gary Smalley who asked the question. He can only be restored once he is fully repentant by following the steps of confession, repentance, asking forgiveness and making restitution (not necessary money) this requires a change in thinking and behavior. You see Bill knows he has a big problem if he confesses to what he is accused of. He will be disqualified for a public ministry, he doesn’t have enough years left to accomplish the above and prove that his “thinking and behavior” has changed. That’s not to say he can’t witness on a street corner but he will be completely unqualified for public ministry. Verse 10 in 1 John 1 say: “If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” That’s where we see Bill now in his claim he has not sinned against the women. You ask where are the witnesses, it in the preponderance of evidence in the volume of claims against him.

      Lastly, he had a public ministry where he made public false claims to deflect his sins to others, thus he needs a public confession and repentance. For the past thirty five years he has been given many opportunities to repent and fix this problem. When I was driving away from the institute for the last time in June 1980. I had to see Bill for my final paycheck, standing next to my car under the portes-cochère in front of his office. I told Bill the world was looking for an example and he had the opportunity to publicly confess and repent, take the time to heal and when he finally returned he would have a ministry like he had never seen before. Because he would be living what he taught and be an example of what Christ did for us. But Bill chose a different path and the rest is history. God will be his final judge not me, but Bill’s lack of confession and repentance will impact where or how he spends eternity.

      • Moderator Moderator
        December 11, 2015    

        Just my comments in the middle of someone else’s thread:

        “He can only be restored once he is fully repentant by following the steps of confession, repentance, asking forgiveness and making restitution (not necessary money) this requires a change in thinking and behavior. You see Bill knows he has a big problem if he confesses to what he is accused of. He will be disqualified for a public ministry”

        We have found this concept interesting. Restored by whom and to what? The Lord restores us to His fellowship instantly as we confess our sins. Those around us are to restore such an one in a spirit of meekness, granting forgiveness based only on them saying “I repent” (Luke 17:4) When it comes to being appointed to a task, a position within a local church, such things require a higher standard of character and conduct. But Bill is in happy fellowship with his local church. And . . . the Board of Directors is not “a church”. Bill is not serving as a pastor or teacher in a local church, but in personal ministry to others, supported by others that want to work with him, that are hired by him. So the question of “restoration” comes down to the individuals wishing to work with him, or not. He is not barred, disqualified from anything, regardless of what he said or felt in Denver. If he wants to publish a book, he may. If a church invites him to speak, he may go. If the Board of Directors chooses to begin to work with him again in some capacity, that is their decision. As frustrating as it is for those that have a need for grand authority structures that control the entire body of believers on earth, they do not, nor will they ever exist.

        • Larne Gabriel Larne Gabriel
          December 11, 2015    

          Alfred you are correct Bill can do what ever he wants, he has a corporation, he can write and sell books to his hearts content just like Scientology, or the Jehovah Witnesses, Walt Disney, the Star War franchise, Tom Clancy’s empire, and I could go on. You are correct that he in not under any authority which beyond the local church where he worships in happy fellowship. That has never been in question and God bless him for that. We are talking about a failed ministry and public life based on unrepentant sin. Technically I would not consider him qualified to speak in any faithful congregation. Are question is not what he is legally allow to do but what the scriptures says he is qualified to do. And its a really simple solution, confess, repent, ask forgiveness and make restitution (not always financial). Then he needs to change his think and behavior. Since many of his sins were committed in public he needs to repent in public.

          Again I am not wasting my time to see Bill put away I want to see Bill healed and all his victims healed. I know what its like to be angry and bitter. I truly am freed today and know how much more I can delight in my Lord and Savior.

          • Moderator Moderator
            December 12, 2015    

            “And its a really simple solution, confess, repent, ask forgiveness and make restitution (not always financial).”

            What authority says he has not done so, Larne? He asserts he has, others agree with him.

          • Larne Gabriel Larne Gabriel
            December 12, 2015    

            Read our June 24, 2015 Failure to Repent Matthew 18:17 letter http://www.recoveringgrace.org/?s=failure+to+repent&search=Search

            I would think if that is really the case we would have heard from him, excited with what he accomplished or from his “rejoicing” victims.

            Obama says were are winning against ISIS too.

          • Moderator Moderator
            April 28, 2016    

            I would think if that is really the case we would have heard from him, excited with what he accomplished or from his “rejoicing” victims.

            Missed this. Bill IS all excited, but most of those that he is dealing with have a limited interest in his successes. I have personally been involved in bringing Bill together with specific individuals. I have heard them fully forgive him for the matters on their mind. Politically, coming out and trumpeting “Bill and I are alright” is still problematic for some. Not everyone has the skin thickness I do. But . . . it is real.

            AND . . . I cannot believe the overarching lack of interest in the majority complaining about Bill in being reconciled with him, let alone having a genuine interest in helping him, given that they believe him to be broke. As indicated, Bill threw himself into this process two years ago. Sort of the prime example was done with the active help of Dr. Murphy, traveling thousands of miles to sit down with a woman who felt Bill had harmed her. In the presence of multiple witnesses she forgave Bill. Within a year she was posting negative things about Bill, with no effort I am aware of of engaging the team that brought Bill to her door to start with. If one earnest effort done in every way “the right way” is so ineffective, what motivation is there to throw oneself at others? Again, regardless of what you think her motivations are for starting to revile him again, she did NOT avail herself of the mechanism already in place for reconciliation. That screams that she – and perhaps many others – really don’t care about reconciliation. Which may explain why the “team” disbanded so quickly.

  4. dan dan
    December 10, 2015    

    You write:
    ” … I have asked you several times to respond to the concerns that Bill expressed, confirmed by Tony’s church let alone our experience with Tony…Have you actually read the infamous letter? And what factual fault do you find with it? … heralding Tony’s cause are prepared to do about anything to avoid addressing my concerns. Will you be the first?”

    Your are asking for two response: 1) what about Tony and his “character problems” and 2) about the so called “infamous letter”. I will address them in separate posts. The first one will be about Tony.

    Tony:
    Though I have not been around Tony much over the last 30 years I do believe I know him as well as anyone from our days at IBYC. We lived together, laughed together, fought together, and fished together (I was better). Tony can be as stubborn and maddening as heck. He was mad at me for a long time and would hardly speak to me because he thought I stole his job. He would apologize for before we all left in the great exodus.

    I am well aware of the frustration Tony had on his two supervisors during our days at IBYC. In many respects, I was the beneficiary. They gave me his responsibilities. But let me also tell something else about Tony. While he can be as stubborn as a mule he is also fiercely competitive, absolutely fearless, a total visionary, 100% committed to his God and His word, will give his last penny for the Kingdom, and will confront any wrong that he sees no matter what the cost. If I had a son or daughter within 500 miles of Tony and he or she were living in an urban gutter there is no doubt in my mind that he would drop everything he was doing and use that same fearless determination to find her and bring her back to family and love her or him back into the arms of the Father. Nor would he ask for a penny of reimbursement and not expect a thank you. If I were privileged to wear the uniform of the US Army, Navy, or Marine Corp and I was in a battle where I was out manned and outgunned, I can think of no one I would want at my side more than Tony. He would give his last ounce of energy battling the enemy and would fall on a grenade to save his men. In most circles we call these qualities leadership. Only in the church do we call these traits “character problems”. Frankly, while Tony is no saint in the human sense, find me one person who is without some kind of “character problem”. Personally, I find the ongoing character assignation by you and Bill disgusting.

    However, you are in good company. The church does not like passion, it does not vision nor like threats to its power and status. It prefers – nice. It prefers men who don’t rock the boat, who sit in church and keep quiet, who will sit on the board and play by the rules of nice. I am reminded of the words of C.S. Lewis: “We castrate the gelding and bid him be fruitful.”

    By using Tony’s relationship with his church you are only deflecting Bill’s own guilt, deceit, and lies away from himself. It is the same tactic that defense council will use to protect the integrity of the accused in a case of sexual rape. Make the victim look as promiscuous as possible so a violent sexual attack looks consensual. I’m not surprised, Bill is the master of the tactic. You have learned his lessons well. You are a worthy student.

    • Larne Gabriel Larne Gabriel
      December 10, 2015    

      Dan, well said and I completely agree. As a former solder I would want Tony in my foxhole and in the past 36 years he has jumped on more then one hand grenade thrown by Bill and his boys. In 1517 Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses on the door of the Wittenberg Castle that started the reformation and the break from a very corrupt central church. He too was excommunicated for speaking the truth, which lead to the evangelical church we have today. One that returned to Christ’s original teaching and taught that we as believers have a direct relationship with Him and not one filtered by the church. Martin Luther was no saint, especially in his later life, and neither is Tony but they both stood for the truth of God’s Word regardless of the political church pressure. We need more men and women like Tony.

    • Moderator Moderator
      December 10, 2015    

      Zeal is a wonderful thing, and I appreciate your comments, Dan. Many at HQ were fond of Tony. Some have been audacious enough to compare me to him.

      But the point remains that he committed several violations of God’s word.

      1) He fearlessly pursued the cause of righteousness as he saw it even when commanded to stand down . . . By those in charge of him. The same ones that gave him the platform, the access, the authority with which to make that pursuit the start with. Mordecai supported and stood with “worse-than-Hitler” King Ahasuerus when his tyrannical ways had gotten him targeted with a well-deserved assassination plot . . . And God used him to deliver everyone. Doing what is “right in our own eyes” by stepping over lines God has laid down has consequences we can never predict. This, again, was much of Bill’s grief with Tony, that his agitation and interference mislead and hardened enough hearts to the point the mess was not solvable.

      2) Daniel honored his sometimes foolish, certainly at times harsh, authorities and gained “loving favor”, influence which God used to work everything out. Tony was apparently despised by his church leadership for the way he tried to straighten them out to the point they refused to stand by him in his hour of challenge. He did not declare this as part of the ferocious accusations he has lodged against Bill over the years for ruining his life. Read http://www.recoveringgrace.org/media/Does-Bill-Gothard-Understand.pdf, specifically points 7 and 8 which he wrote in the last couple of years. No hint that these were largely self-inflicted wounds.

      3) Based on a number of documents published on RG, Tony was the primary force agitating for a lawsuit. It was his uncle that apparently bankrolled the effort . . . yet when the time came to make it happen, he excused himself from being part of the team putting it together and bearing the liability. No explanation has ever been provided. We wonder if compunction against suing fellow believers might have been in play, in which case agitating for it would have been hypocritical.

      4) Tony has made many serious accusations which he has been less than forthright in defending. When I first read the Don Veinot book back in 2005 I read of serious moral accusations which had to my knowledge not been publicly addressed by Bill and IBLP leadership. I purposed to come to ground on these, and if true, do whatever I needed to alert the Board and ATI rank and file.

      When I approached Don for help in this he immediately referred me to Tony as the source. Tony was gracious and friendly – I asked for the basis of the several accusations of moral impropriety against Bill in the book. From the first reply a frustrating pattern developed that continued for 10 years. He referred repeatedly to “The Packet” of his notes and documentation gleaned from many interviews with others, including the abused secretaries, as proof without telling me what was in it. He spoke about many other things, notably the mishandling of Steve’s transgressions and the “Agent” letter that Bill wrote against him. Yet he steadfastly refused to provide even the smallest details to help identify what Bill had allegedly done. He cited confidentiality, he cited his mistrust of me, the need to see it all at once.

      He proposed at one point to bring “The Packet” with him on his next trip through Chicago so we could meet. Then, when I agreed, changed his mind and said I had the come to Kansas, then finally said I would not be able to see it at all. He let me know that secular folk – the LA Times, the ones that published a “fondling” claim against Bill back in 1980 – had the entire packet in their vaults, but I could not see it. He refused to even tell me WHAT Bill had allegedly done – porn, touching this part or that, what context, how corroborated, how many women – general information that would not identify the woman but would provide the sense of reality and give me something to approach Bill on.

      After a decade of emails of me suggesting he was “stonewalling” and he reacting violently to the assertion, he finally cited two things to substantiate the accusation of “fondling”:

      “The Cabin Story”: He stated that the fact that a woman’s genitals and his were separated by millimeters of fabric with her on his lap constituted “fondling”. I respectfully – incredulously – disagreed.

      “The Spilled Coke on the Learjet” story: A secretary sitting next to Bill on the plane opened a soda can which exploded all over her and the plane, liquid dripping from the ceiling. Gary Smalley observed Bill grab tissues and vigorously wipe her front and lap. Small plane, others were there, Bill obviously was not doing something secret. When I asked him about it he sheepishly indicated he had overreacted in the moment and should not have done that. We agree. That is not “fondling”.

      And that is where we sit to this day. If we come in the name of the Lord Jesus on our own Matthew 18 mission there was no reason for him to not provide enough information to convince us that he was a true witness, actionable information. It begins to feel like only those who oppose Bill already are permitted to interact with Tony and his data. Subsequently allowing “Recovering Grace”, which is no church – openly embracing anyone with a beef with Bill without regard to where they are on their “spiritual journey” (their words) – to have access was disturbing.

  5. dan dan
    December 10, 2015    

    You write:
    ” … I have asked you several times to respond to the concerns that Bill expressed, confirmed by Tony’s church let alone our experience with Tony…Have you actually read the infamous letter? And what factual fault do you find with it? … heralding Tony’s cause are prepared to do about anything to avoid addressing my concerns. Will you be the first?”

    My response to the “infamous letter”…

    First of all, yes I have read the letter. I read it more than 30 years ago, I read it several months ago and I read it again just recently. I have three questions about the letter 1) was it factual 2) what was the intent in writing it, and 3) was it appropriate?

    Factual content?:
    I have no doubt that for the most part it contains fact. However, It is not without lies and deceit and Bill is now on record acknowledging this. Although he skirts around the his lying but using language that suggest deceit but does not come right out and say it.

    What was Bill’s intent?
    I have stated multiple times in this blog that Bill’s clear intent was to destroy Tony’s reputation for the purpose of deflecting attention of his (Bill’s) own deceit and failure to exercise diligence in his corporate and Biblical responsibilities as the founder and CEO of a major Christian organization. These responsibilities included taking all appropriate action when multiple young women complain to him that his little brother and our Sr. VP was sexually harassing and abusing them. In addition, why did Bill feel so compelled the send copies to Tony’s family, national leadership who were our regional and city volunteers, and people like Chuck Swindall, and John MacArthur? From what I can see, the only point he was trying to make was the destruction of Tony’s character and reputation. Bill is finally now on record that in writing that letter he was out to save his own reputation.

    Was it appropriate?
    When I re-read it recently I was struck that the first several points of “fact” were publicizing conversations Bill and Tony would have had before Tony was an employee. These conversations were confidential, of a counseling nature, and therefore private. I am sure you are aware of something called: clergy-penitent privilege. This is the legal mechanism that protects ministers and clergy from exposing the content of confidential conversations. Mental health professionals and lawyers have the same protections and responsibilities. Outside of a confession of child abuse a minister cannot be forced to divulge information given in confidential conversations. There is also an ethical responsibility that goes along with being and ordained minister. One of these core ethical responsibilities is the minister does not divulge the content of private conversations.

    So was this letter appropriate? In my judgement, given that Bill was an ordained minister it was not only inappropriate, it was absolutely unethical! Biblically, it was gossip. Without going into the technical definition, you can look this up for yourself, it meets all the qualifications of – gossip.

    As it does meet the definition we should ask ourselves, what does the Bible say about gossip? A quick read of Romans 1 has a rather complete list of sins worthy of death. You can read the chapter on your own for the complete list but guess what you will find in there: “They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil…” (I see Bill in 4 of these 7 sins) And this is only a partial list. And a fair warning towards the end of the chapter – Paul’s condemnation includes those who approve of these practices. You might want to consider this in your rather blind defense of Bill and his duplicity.

    So just what are your concerns that you would like for me to address? I am happy to be your first if that will help you.

    • Moderator Moderator
      December 11, 2015    

      “I have stated multiple times in this blog that Bill’s clear intent was to destroy Tony’s reputation for the purpose of deflecting attention of his (Bill’s) own deceit and failure to exercise diligence in his corporate and Biblical responsibilities as the founder and CEO of a major Christian organization.”

      Bill’s stance is that he took diligent – albeit late – action on all the issues that were in play. Not every action taken satisfied everyone – he had lots of advice from many quarters on how to right the ship, some very conflicting. Tony was one of the ones unsatisfied with the actions taken and continued motivating for changes that satisfied his sense of justice. Because of the responsible position having been given him by Bill he knew and had influence with most of the “important people” who needed to be convinced that IBLP was back on track. He used that influence to turn not a few against Bill and his efforts, working toward satisfaction of his concerns instead of working toward closure.

      So . . . his intent may well have been to make it plain that Tony – who was in contact with about everyone you mentioned – was working on his own and, in fact, as far as Bill was concerned had done great damage.

      “Bill is finally now on record that in writing that letter he was out to save his own reputation.”

      That may well have played a role. Like you said, nobody is perfect. But chances are that played less of a role than the genuine grief over watching what he perceived to be someone doing more of the devil’s work than the Lord’s.

      “These conversations were confidential, of a counseling nature, and therefore private. I am sure you are aware of something called: clergy-penitent privilege.”

      That is a tad of a stretch to make that apply here, don’t you imagine?

      “Biblically, it was gossip. Without going into the technical definition, you can look this up for yourself, it meets all the qualifications of – gossip.”

      How so? Matthew 18 is gossip? Bill had expressed his grief to Tony privately, even as he documented. At this point he took it to “the church”. That is NOT gossip.

      • Sandy Sandy
        December 11, 2015    

        Alfreddd! Did you just defend Bill’s taking his “grief” to “the church,” meaning a bunch of your target’s close friends/family AND high-profile leaders? But you have reviled RecoveringGrace on multiple occasions for taking stories of personal experiences to “the church” at large, including all who will hear, not just a hand-picked few of particular influence?

        • Moderator Moderator
          December 11, 2015    

          Bill DID go to the church. Tony’s church, those that were trusted members of the church . . . that was precisely the point, people who are believers, who were or might be concerned with Bill and IBLP for spiritual reasons. Recovering Grace has never worried much about restricting things to, dealing only with, speaking to, or hearing from the “church”. Anybody that hates Bill is “OK” . . . OK to tell their story, OK to comment on things, revile, gather information, pass it on in all kinds of godless venues. So, no, sorry, RG is NOT the church.

          • Larne Gabriel Larne Gabriel
            December 11, 2015    

            To invoke a little Clintoneez , what do you mean by, “Bill DID go to the Church”? That statement strongly implies that Bill walk into the physical church. Or do you mean he call the church, or wrote a letter to the church or sent two of his henchmen to the church. In 1981 the latter two were true, he wrote a letter and sent two of his henchmen to a secret meeting with the church. I don’t know who set up the meeting in 1981 Bill or his hatchet men. I do know he call the interim pastor in the summer of 2014.

            I think in this war of word one needs to be entirely precise. Regarding “the church”, DG is not the church nor is Bill’s new ministry nor has he ever been accountable to a church for his personal behavior. Lastly your comment “Anybody that hates Bill is “Ok”. I don’t hate Bill, neither does Tony, Bill Wood or any of the 13 ex-staff that were at a reunion at my home this summer. That is also true of the people I have communicated with on RG staff or broken bread with. We pray for Bill and for the scales to come off his eyes and for his heart to unharden so that when he meets his maker he will be welcomed into the eternal kingdom.

          • Moderator Moderator
            December 11, 2015    

            Larne, I do respect you . . . I love you. But if you do not believe that a fundamental motivation among many participants on RG is “hatred” of Bill, you are mistaken. Have walked in the heat of that for many years. Hatred means that you believe that your life and the world in general would be better off without a person . . . you can’t stand them, they have no objective redeeming value. The kindest, most noble desire among them is that Bill “disappear” for good . . . happy hunting grounds . . . no more influence, no more books, no more seminars . . . just go away. The unkind wish far worse.

          • Sandy Sandy
            December 12, 2015    

            You miss my point about “the church.” I was pointing out the double standard of Bill “going to” (with his 19-page letter he eventually says was wrong) – in your words, “the church,” yet you revile RecoveringGrace for not only existing and “taking” grievous matters to “the church” at large considering the far-reaching impact (by your own account) of this man’s “ministry,” And you also just reviled them for not limiting their scope to “the church” while Bill went berserk sending copies of his “church” letter to people even ompletely uninvolved in the matter as well as to people who were extremely personally close to Tony.

            Some things seem obvious to some, but let me explain something else about how manipulators act. They tell people what to think in seemingly credible ways. One very effective method is to “re-frame reality” and present it to them as givens. They prefer offense to defense. When in a crunch, they’ll cherry-pick people (1) that can influence others in hopes of avoiding the impression of a one-man band, and (2) most cruelly and calculatedly, people that their target is close to so that the target’s support system disintegrates. I say this as information from one who has lived with a bullseye on my back for years, not accusation.

            My point isn’t about who you define “the church” to be. My point is that you have some nerve saying RG should keep their (real) concerns about a very public and far-reaching ministry private while your Bill took his admitted factual errors to people who could effect some serious harm to someone with negative news.

            You have dug your feet in the sand claiming that RG hates Bill and have refused to hear anything to the contrary. Yes, motives appear pretty clear here, but I’m saying you’ve got them mis-assigned.

          • Moderator Moderator
            December 12, 2015    

            ” And you also just reviled them for not limiting their scope to “the church” while Bill went berserk sending copies of his “church” letter to people even ompletely uninvolved in the matter as well as to people who were extremely personally close to Tony. “

            I think we need to move off this point, Sandy. I disagree. Every person he contacted was either part of Tony’s world – and in a position to evaluate the accusations, provide him counsel, respond back to Bill to correct or confirm – or part of the IBLP world, directly affected by what was going on, emphatically “the church”, genuine believers concerned about the Name of Jesus.

      • Dan Dan
        December 12, 2015    

        I do wish you to know, I very much respect your willingness to respond so thoroughly and promptly to each of these comments.

        You write

        Bill’s stance is that he took diligent – albeit late –

        Please stop using the word “diligent” while acknowledging that Bill was late. He cannot be diligent and late at the same time. Of course we have already established that taking 30 plus years to seek reconciliation is within your definition of “diligent” as the Bible defines the term so I guess it fits your profile. However, for the rest of us who can read a dictionary we might just might think you are continuing the lie about Bill’s basic ethics and character.

        From Vines: “earnestness, zeal,” or sometimes “the haste accompanying this,”

        So does this sound like 30 plus years? Or to even more to the point, would you consider Bill diligent if a young woman on his staff came to him and said his little brother and Sr VP was groping her everywhere between her hips and shoulders; and then he somehow forgot about it? (You may remember he told me when I asked about his forgetfulness he said “I have learned to put these things out of my mind”.) Would you consider Bill as diligent in the Biblical sense, or even as in the basic ethical sense if the next victim was one of your daughters? As much as I hate to even ask the question and even bring one of your daughters into the debate, I think we all need to understand that these girls were someone’s daughter. In the famous and so called reconciliation meeting several young women had to stand up right in front of their mothers and fathers and confess that they were in a sexual relationship with Bill’s brother when he was the second in command of IBYC.

        Diligent? Oh please.

        • Moderator Moderator
          December 12, 2015    

          “Please stop using the word “diligent” while acknowledging that Bill was late.”

          So . . . is there any possibility of him not being diligent for 35 years, then gaining that diligence, and applying full diligence in recent years? I myself am far from perfect and find that I ignore certain responsibilities for long periods of time . . . until the time when the Lord decides it is time for “an intervention”. Then I get spanked, I wake up, I – hopefully – correct the problem and move on with a new way of doing business. Can you relate to that?

          Otherwise there is no hope for any of us after the first misfire. Meaning . . . if we ever failed to do all that is in 2 Peter 1 we can never fix it and get back to where we should be. That is NOT what you believe, is it?

      • Dan Dan
        December 12, 2015    

        Again, I want you to know that I very much appreciate your willingness to respond promptly and thoroughly to each of our comments. A lessor disciple would have given up long ago.

        You write concerning Tony and the “agent of satan” letter

        …he took it to the church.

        First of all, it is not clear by “church” you mean Tony’s church or the universal Body of Christ. However, in this context I don’t think it makes much difference. You have just articulated another of Bill’s core values. Since Bill is already on record that one of the purposes of the letter was to protect his own reputation, that it contained lies, and that it was not delivered in a spirit of love we can conclude the following:

        Bill finds himself, his ambition, and what he perceives as the value of his ministry as more important than the purity, the value, the place, and the holiness of the Bride of Christ – his church. Whether we want to define the church as a local congregation or the universal church, in either case Bill feels that he (himself) is of greater importance.

        So let’s review the core values that we have already identified in this blog:
        1) That for Bill to take thirty plus years to seriously (using this word very loosely) seek reconciliation after trying to destroy Tony with his family, local leadership, and whatever national leadership that was listening qualifies for your definition of “diligence” within the biblical context; and
        2) That you (and Bill) find it within your ethical code to attack someone’s character as a way of deflecting blame from your leader and yourself as his accomplice.

        Now we add a third value:

        3) That I (Bill) am more important that the body of Christ.

        Thank you so much. I think we are gaining much clarity about Bill’s essential ethical values.

        • Moderator Moderator
          December 12, 2015    

          “A lessor disciple would have given up long ago. “

          I will thank you for that possibly back-handed compliment. :-) It is much nicer than getting yelled at. You are at the very least a gentleman.

          “First of all, it is not clear by “church” you mean Tony’s church or the universal Body of Christ.”

          Since many of the “Universal Body of Christ” are either already in heaven or not saved yet that is tough to do. There is also literally no way to reach every saved person on the face of the earth. So . . . any attempt to do so would be related to the “who is my neighbor?” comment that scribe made to Jesus prior to the story of the “Good Samaritan”. My neighbor is my world. Bill’s “church” in that context are those in the Body of Christ that are influenced by him, care about him. That group is also, BTW, hard to get ahold.

          The “Church” he contacted was Tony’s church, having a material responsibility for him, in the same way many have contacted Bill’s church over the years to complain. And he contacted a subset of “The Church” that was actively involved in the current matters with him. RG is, on the other hand, interested in spreading the dirt as far and wide as possible. They, for example, apparently pay Facebook to shove these stories in the faces of anyone that fits a general profile they have identified. Pushing to get accounts of mischief posted on Bill’s public Wiki. They have gone to the media, slandering Bill – and many others in the church – with representations of who we are and what we believe. Party to mockery of simple believers that we watched on CNN of late where the host decried those of his relatives that felt that God could solve any problem, saying in so many words, “God is not enough” while all on the panel – including a principal from RG – nodded in agreement. Their audience is the world, without restriction. That is so far from Matthew 18 as to be intensely offensive.

          “That you (and Bill) find it within your ethical code to attack someone’s character as a way of deflecting blame from your leader and yourself as his accomplice.”

          Tony lived in the shadows for many, many years making many authoritative statements, accusations which were published without any further corroboration. Recently he came out and granted extensive permission to post his story and accusations against Bill. Since he is a witness to Bill’s alleged evil he is then also subject to examination as a witness. When you come and say, “Tony was wronged”, it is our responsibility to point out the facts that when missing from the accounts posted on RG. We had been in active contact with Tony until he cut the dialog off. What else should we do?

          Bill going to Tony’s church to complain was precisely the right thing to do if he was unable to reconcile with Bill on his complaints otherwise. Do you disagree? Whether he should have sent it to exactly everyone else that he did is subject to evaluation, and I suspect he feels now that it should have been a more restricted action. Bottom line, though, I am having a hard time finding fault with what he did, what with a Tony-instigated lawsuit pending, which was just wrong.

      • Dan Dan
        December 12, 2015    

        You asked if I did not think equating Bill’s and Tony’s personal conversations prior to Tony joining Bill’s staff as a bit of a stretch of the clergy-penitent privilege. In most cases I would. I was aware of Tony’s history prior to joining staff. I don’t remember him publicizing it but neither did he hide from it. However, it gets to the broader point. Bill has no reservation about using any information at his disposal to obfuscate the truth to protect his own reputation and integrity (or lack thereof).

        Also, you questioned the use of the word “gossip” in this same context. Fine, I will retract the word “gossip”. How about slander? Bill is on record that he told lies in the letter to Tony’s church and national Christian leadership. Use whatever word you like. Gossip is the lessor evil of the two but if you would prefer the more accurate – slander – be my guest.

        • Moderator Moderator
          December 12, 2015    

          Again, I disagree with representing an opinion that turns out to be false as a lie. Yes, that could be categorized as slander . . . or libel . . . or defamation particularly if it shows negligence or malice. I guess I am looking for more precision in the accusations. People have said things about me – “evil surmisings”, to use the KJV – that are simply false. I will not accuse them of lying unless it is deliberate fabrication, and none of my opponents have stooped to that yet, to my knowledge.

  6. rob war rob war
    December 11, 2015    

    Oh Alfred, you really need to stop characterizing RG and those that participate there as either they “hate” Bill or they are out to destroy Bill. You really need to stop these bogus, uncalled for, judgmental characterizations. In your narrow mind anyone that doesn’t worship the ground Bill walks as out to kill Bill. There is a pretty diverse group of people over there and there is no hatred but a desire for truth. You need to stop these over the top judgement calls on others and their motivations. The only person that has hurt Bill is Bill. He has no one else to blame and it is the hand picked board that didn’t bring him back, not RG or anyone there.

    • Moderator Moderator
      December 12, 2015    

      Would to God you were right, Rob, but you are not. If people were about the truth they would be most interested in factual information that is presented that favors Bill. Interested, hoping it is true. That is what people who love do. RG is not the place for those kind of people.

      • Larne Gabriel Larne Gabriel
        December 12, 2015    

        Alfred his accomplishments will never cover his unrepentant sin either on earth or in eternity. It is so simple that Bill can’t see it because his version of Christianity and grace is complicated by our need to reach God. Instead of God taking all the credit for what He did! In that we should strive to be more like Him. Salvation is too important to God to leave any portion up to us to accomplish; to obtain that salvation we need to acknowledge our sin and repent. 1 John 1:9-10.

      • Dan Dan
        December 12, 2015    

        Well I am not so sure. I have read the blogs on RG and find in them great clarity. I also have a fried who found real growth and help from Bill. I am happy for him. His wife is even happier. Does not mean that I think any differently about Bill. Bill does quote a lot of scripture. Even if some of it is out of context and misused, some of it is appropriate. If the Spirit of God uses the Word of God to change a life, praise the Lord.

        • Moderator Moderator
          December 12, 2015    

          Everybody quotes Scripture, Dan. Some even do it with glitz and glam and passion, appealing to the emotions. You and I know the difference between that and Holy Spirit anointed preaching, teaching. I think you are not being just by so easily dismissing what has so clearly been a work of God on and in and through Bill.

          • dan dan
            December 12, 2015    

            You write:

            I think you are not being just by so easily dismissing what has so clearly been a work of God on and in and through Bill.

            Not really sure what you are saying here. Are you saying I am not giving Bill credit? Not sure what you mean by “just”. If you think I agree that Bill’s work is “clearly a work of God on and in and through Bill?” then we have a serious disagreement. I am unconvinced. Bill has certainly produced lots of glitz, glam and passion. He has certainly produced a lot of people willing to spend good money to here him speak and tell some really good stories. This is why people like John MacArthur and Charles Stanley were so eager to align themselves with Bill. They effectively said “this work (Bill’s work) must go on because look at the size and money, surely this is an indication of God’s anointing”. If public opinion is an indication of God’s anointing (Bill always thought that it was) then there are lots and lots of missionaries serving in total obscurity that don’t have God’s blessing. As I have said in this blog, I understand that even John MacArthur is now saying “Bill Gothard was a fad”.

            As for you and I both being able to tell the difference between holy spirit anointed preaching… I think you give me too much credit and take too much for yourself. If the difference were that easy Peter would not have had to write 2 Peter.

      • rob war rob war
        December 12, 2015    

        The majority of the articles and comments on RG are about Bill’s teaching and the problems with it and the problems with his teaching is dealt with from a number of angles such as Bill’s use of scripture and how the teaching and Bill’s views have negatively affected the person, their family, their education, their careers, their marriages, their ability to make decisions etc. Those are not lies but facts and testimonies.

        • Moderator Moderator
          December 12, 2015    

          Testimonies, yes there are many of those.

          Of course, if you were to poll the average Israelite as they wandered in the desert they would say that Moses was a heavy-handed tyrant whose plan did not work – they were still in the desert and there was no “promised land” in view. Were they right?

          There are many, many “former Christians”, atheists and whatnot, that declare how bad Christianity is, how it doesn’t work, how it ruined their lives. How glad they are they got out when they did. Prayer doesn’t work because there is no one to hear. Lots of websites. A bunch of them post on RG. One – so far – showed up here. Tell me: are they right?

          The final judgment, that is the time when we will be able to fully evaluate the actual effect of this path or that.

          • rob war rob war
            December 12, 2015    

            It just isn’t testimonies but articles that explore the faulty use and abuse of scripture. You will come back and claim as you have before that you think Bill is the most true. There is nothing that anyone can say to you that is going to change your mind so we will leave it at that. But you can’t say and it is wrong that RG is full of lies. Nor can you try and dismiss it as Bill is so truthful that people don’t like him because of that and he is unpopular. I am sure in the heyday of the 1970’s Bill saw his “popularity” as a sign of God’s blessing, you have stated so yourself. Bill is not popular now because he is true, it is because he is false and what he taught has hurt people which is what heresy always does, hurts people that follow it.

          • Moderator Moderator
            December 12, 2015    

            There is plenty that can change my mind, Rob. There are so many junctures in this process for me that could have gone another direction. Beginning with the allegations against Bill that I started investigating at the beginning. It was a deep grief to me but something I had to see through. The number of times I screwed up enough courage to rip open that closet door where the boogey man was hiding, only to find . . . a rat . . . or nothing.

            As to all those expository articles, seemed like I found a distinct lack of interest on the part of the folks there in defending the doctrinal points. We figured that we would get all kinds of excitement with our two articles posted here, not been much. If there is a topic you want to open here, ask a question. Eventually we intend to get the questions broken out as their own topics. We are still learning the software.

  7. Butterfly Butterfly
    May 19, 2016    

    The problem with manufactured scandals is that they carry a two edged sword. The problem is, when real sexual abuse happens/scandal, are people going to view it as “crying wolf,” as a way to try to destroy any Bible teacher out there that you disagree with, using this situation as a precedent? That is a potential problem with false allegations, that it may come to the point where real stuff is happening, and it is discounted as, “Look what they did to Bill Gothard x amount of years ago to try to destroy him.” This is a problem. Real sexual abuse happens and to railroad Bill Gothard, and people know it, may potentially cheapen real accusations down the road when there is a real situation of sexual abuse. This whole situation screams of a big railroading job. If Bill Gothard had said Christian rock n roll is okay, going to watch R rated movies is okay, etc. we wouldn’t all be here discussing this today.

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