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
Those 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
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.
The only major issue is spiritual pride. He stood up in front of thousands and declared himself to be not tempted when he spoke of touching a woman but that she was. This is the heart of the issue for me personally. I love Bill and his teachings but I don’t think that he has truly repented. He is in denial out of spiritual pride.
Dan: Thank for commenting. Would you be able to clarify the event you are referring to, where Bill told you he was not tempted by a touch but a woman was? Was the pride you see in openly denying that he was tempted when you believe he was? We meet with Bill regularly and I would like to follow up with him. Thank you.
Old comment . . . But . . . “M”, if you have evidence to the contrary, do please bring it out. After the conclusion of the extensive lawsuits and all the evidence produced, and the private conversations and formal depositions introduced into evidence, the facts would appear to overwhelming confirm all we have stated here. And if correct . . . Of what do you think Bill must repent? He didn’t do it. And, again, if you have proof he did, where were you when not one but three public, professional law firms were pleading for help in making the case against Bill? That would almost be criminal if the plaintiffs are in fact victims and you have proof and never came to provide it.
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?
A Statement from Bill Gothard
I have withheld this statement in order to honor the request of the Board of Directors to wait
until an initial review has taken place. As the review continues, I now want to make this
God has brought me to a place of greater brokenness than at any other time in my life. It is a
grief to realize how my pride and insensitivity have affected so many people. I have asked the Lord
to reveal the underlying causes and He is doing this.
For many years I have been building the Institute but losing my first love for the Lord. God warns
“I know thy works, and thy labour . . . Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou
hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent. . . ”
(Revelation 2:2, 4, 5). I was finding value and affirmation from the accomplishments of the
ministry and those involved in it instead of filling this void in my life with God and His love. I
have repented in deep sorrow. However, over the
years many people have been offended in different ways because of my lack of genuine love.
I put the Institute and its goals ahead of people and their needs. Standards became more important
than relationships. People who didn’t “measure up” were cut off and those who were not seen as
adding value to the ministry were treated as though they were expendable. The more I have listened
to people describe their experiences the more grieved and sorrowful I have become.
My wrong focus produced a further consequence. Families were made to feel that they must “measure
up.” This resulted in some parents putting undue pressure on their sons and daughters in order for
the family to be accepted. When there was a lack of love or consistency, sons and daughters saw
this as hypocrisy and rejected it. Also, many felt that the expectations where so high that they
could never measure up to them. This resulted in a feeling of deep defeat.
This emphasis on outward appearance was also manifested by bringing selected young people to serve
at the Headquarters and causing others to feel rejected and offended by my favoritism. My actions
of holding of hands, hugs, and touching of feet or hair with young ladies crossed the boundaries of
discretion and were wrong. They demonstrated a double-standard and violated a trust. Because of the
claims about me I do want to state that I have never kissed a girl nor have I touched a girl
immorally or with sexual intent.
I have failed to live out some of the very things that I have taught. I am
A Statement from Bill Gothard | billgothard.com
6/3/15, 12:43 AM
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committed to learning from my failures by God’s grace and mercy, and do
what I can to help bring about Biblical reconciliation as Jesus commands: “Therefore if thou bring
thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; Leave
there thy gift
before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy
gift” (Matthew 5:23-24).
More than anything I want to make right what I have done wrong and deepen my relationship with the
Lord. I trust in God’s undeserved mercy and pray that those whom I have offended would find grace
to forgive me. I know that I do not deserve this. I would certainly appreciate your prayers
during this time that God would bring healing to those who have been so deeply affected by my
actions. I am grateful for the opportunities I have had thus far to be reconciled with individuals
and it is my goal to contact as many others as I can, fully hear them, and do whatever I can to
bring about Biblical reconciliation.
My greatest offense has been against God. I have earnestly sought His mercy and forgiveness and
have asked Him to allow me to experience more of Him and the power of His resurrection.
I have gone over this statement with Bill in great detail. As you can imagine this became front and center in the lawsuit as well, requiring numerous affidavits and detailed explanations in interrogatories. I sat across from Bill with his lawyer when he worked through this. Remember, any statement he made in interrogatories is considered impeachable and it was of the utmost importance that he recall every detail which could be used toward that end during trial.
With that as background I can assure you that Bill was not confessing to any crimes here. He was not even confessing to the events that others recorded. He was taking the high road to assume responsibility for sensitivity toward other’s boundaries . . . Despite the fact that he had no recollection of anything approaching impropriety. His belief was that there were things innocently done that others considered improper. During the replies to interrogatories we grilled him on these items. He recalled one incident that someone else pointed out as “improper”, where he flipped a ponytail out of a young lady’s coat. He went back to her to apologize, but she was not bothered. This was confirmed in a contact with her after the lawsuits started. Foot contact was minor and to both sexes, as we have testimony. Nothing approaching any objective standard of being out of line. Or approaching that activity that some have alleged. Again, this is Bill’s recollections in the face of legal jeopardy, in private with his lawyer and a witness. The holding of a young lady’s hands as he counseled her and spoke to her heart as a father or grandfather would was so well known and out in the open as to defy any belief that Bill meant ill. Hales back to a simpler and more innocent day.
Once Bill began to realize what was being taken from the statement, he took steps to have it removed. And never replaced it. He adamantly denies that he intended to confess to anything other than possible insensitivity. And with the outright lies as well as crazy impossible “recovered memories” that came out during the lawsuit proceedings, for my part, I can say with a clear conscience – He never did that. Anyone with proof otherwise should trot it out.
Bill’s letter speaks much much louder than your trying to explain away his letter.
Just this past week you tried to gaslight us into thinking that Bill did not do any of those things to which he admitted.
On November 17, 2019 Will said:
“Bill was guilty of touching women’s feet, spending time alone with women, and lingering unwanted hugs and hand holding.”
Moderator’s Nov 22 reply to Will’s post:
“Bill is not guilty of any of what you said.”
Yet, the letter. There it is. Bill’s own words, which he published online and which are printed above:
“My actions of holding of hands, hugs, and touching of feet or hair with young ladies crossed the boundaries of discretion and were wrong.”
So now we have discussed that twice already. You now know what he meant by that. He assumed he had been oblivious to the sensibilities of others. Now he knows better, because we have the insight of a litany of lawsuits and the discovery process to compare to – the “crimes” were instituted after the fact, placing new meaning on innocent things. Which you get to do with 20 year old accounts and memories.
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.”
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.
Just my comments in the middle of someone else’s thread:
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.
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.
What authority says he has not done so, Larne? He asserts he has, others agree with him.
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.
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.
He has done so, but like many, his detractors and those who keep spinning their stories, which has been said before seem to come from unclear memories with time and with others spinning stories , keep cultivating their own bitterness instead of forgiving. Many cant forgive when deep inside there is nothing real and tangible to forgive ,as they misconstrued and magnified with time .He deserves reinstatement of control over the ministry the Lord built through Him after he was exonerated and all the suits were dropped , and the board needs reprimanding and probably some form of punishment for rapidly taking it over and away from him, taking large salaries that Bill never took. It is tragic to know that they basically stole ILBP from Him, and say now, well “He does not need it , he is so old ” ….I am sure they would not appreciate giving up control and use of properties , names and works created by years of their life ,their time and the Lord’s ministry in their life just because others say they are too old … It is wrong at any age. Bill has suffered unjustly just by having to go through all of this, and now it is time the board give it all back, perhaps with damages . He only wants restoration and reconciliation with them , but He is due restitution . This should come now , with the sad book filled with now proven wrong accusations of women presented as true horrors that didn’t happen , written by Jinger Duggar . She probably , according to the moderator here, could be sued successfully by BIll for defamation, but He wont sue her. Not because he isnt right, but because he would rather have peace and not sue his fellow believers…. Maybe he should in this case . Mr Duggar owes him so much for his family’s broad and vast media fame and their resulting immense fortune , yet he dropped Bill like a bad case of stomach flu when the majority of the accusations surfaced , but has not reached out the hand of reconciliation now the suit has been dropped , after 3 law firms tried to pursue it and also dropped it . Someday the Father will do what is right as the Lord sees all , more than we do , for what they did and the humiliation and dismantling of the ministry that God used tremendously in so many lives. Not every word, not every application ,not every principle was of God in the limited context sometimes presented – it wasnt Scripture, , many were just that – basic snd the Lord /Holy Spirit had /has the right to be creative and individual in application in some , but the majority of principles were based richly with the sincere , pure love and honor of the entire Word of God (as much of the New Testament hadnt even been written when Christ lived and taught )and its application by the Holy Spirit in lives living consecrated Discipleship and demonstrating the love of Christ to others by service , sacrifice and example were all a wonderful basis on which to build a lifetime of study and obedience to following Christ , not to mention the blessings of continued memorizing and meditating and using the Word memorized both in prayer , a daily guide for the Holy Spirit to bring to mind to lead and guide ,and in helping others daily with love . I owe my scholastic achievement , profession and the ability , wisdom and understanding of through and by the Lord Jesus to raise and disciple 6 children to his encouragement to keep the habits of memorizing and meditation by and through the Lord , and by Him , to keep the word of God , and dependence on his grace and strength to obey and do so to the Lord totally , but He did use Bill’s teaching at age 15, and 16 attending his seminars once a year , and once as an adult with my children . WhenI was 16,,I also took 6 of my high school teachers, 3 principals and 12 men in church leadership( elders and deacons) , from which a renewed commitment to Christ and large Bible Study arose in my community of 25K people .Asking forgiveness, Standing alone , and loving /serving others, and a daily walk with the Lord , time in the Word , with watching over clean influences were instrumental in much ministry in my life and later making choices of spending time for family ministry grew out of some of the ideas presented as the Lord led ….time does not permit …. it was the Lord , but his winsome and clear presentation to me for 2 times , one of which was used to bring my mother to Christ 9 years before she suddenly died, did not seem burdensome . Later , raising my family of 6 children alone, I couldnt afford the ATI conferences, and as a single mother, i felt some judgement by some of the families at conferences when We could attend , but I knew the Lord was present and leading and I used the Nature books and some families gave me some of the materials to adjunct the Home education program I developed and used. I realized they were not privy to my Story, but the Lord was , and He was my father, husband and fortunately , i cared more what He thought of me , so I was really not at all concerned or pained by the occasional slight by Ati members ., especially since it was an Ati family who invited me and we also attended Family camp . I was University and 11 years post graduate in medicine and surgery trained, but My mindset for my children’s was for them to be BIblically and verbally prepared to be a missionary around age 13 and fully prepared by the time of university , commute from home and use education as a ticket , being already properly educated when home education was finished … I carefully thought and prayed through the program i planned for their education starting at birth with songs and Bible stories and verses and reading early , heavily with Creation defense, observation and discovery in Creation the basics of reading , writing , primary history and How Gods hand had been seen in History , Proverbs , wise quotes and the biblical principles behind them to use in writing , and biographies of famous people in every field most of which were strong believers, using Christian biographies , learning to analyze literature by character and understanding of out come based on Scripture of the characters, and see the decline of civilization away from godliness and a Christian world view in Art and music , while seeing the quality of good art, music and science that all came from committed believers , and with His promptings and careful oversight had the heart to train my children to make an impact in the world when they were mature and use the Word and family as prayer and counsel ….which they did .We dressed well ,modestly with a little style, masculine and feminine although we shopped wisely and thriftily and many were answers to prayer , but not the usual homeschool jumper uniforms at all times . So I am a bit of an atypical Bill Gothard attendee, but still the basics were just that, excellent Scriptural basics. The damage I saw mostly was his authority teaching developed arrogant and lazy somewhat unmasculine men who simply worked at a job , and lorded ungodly authority , not servant leadership , over their wives and families, and left so much of the home education and discipleship to their wives and treated them with courtesy in public , but demeaning and demanding in private ( when they thought it was private), that many homeschool AtI mothers were worn out and often depressed and not very cheerful ., and many children were not properly disciplined or trained by a loving dad who served them and taught them to serve each other …and mother was too tired and emotionally drained to do so . My children noticed this , and thanked me for doing Home education a bit differently . When asked by many why my children always seemed to cheerfully obey me and always get along, they said ” We absolutely know our mother always has our best interest at heart , she tirelessly shows hospitality to others , and cares with excellence to us , and encourages us by her example in her deep cheerful and real love of Christ .and to each one of us ” we KNOW she loves us and gives to our best ” I think that came from attitudes instilled from the seminar to love Christ with all our H M and S , and that my role as teacher – mother was the best role in llfe, and physician Surgeon came second …. they were always with me at my office in the back 2 rooms, the two days I was there . We barely survived financially but they didnt know it , and they learned how to shop and the outdoors with families camping and enjoying the out doors, gave a rich rich treasure trove to study and learn Gods magnificence as Creator, and have wonderful family memories . When one of my three sons , the youngest had a rare disease and we spent more than half the time in the hospital with him , we schooled there , and prayed for every one who came in the room ( offered , and no one refused — 7 years, hopefully a book soon ) We all saw so much of the Lord those years when half the time he was in a wheel chair, bald and half his normal weight … … thats a book for the Lords provision . The Lord told me He would live and that He told me he was building depth of testimony in this son ‘s life , who actually knew the Saviour at 3, I never doubted His promise and assurance was so real even through 7 relapses and 2 sepsis admissiona and 15 hip and back surgeries , when all the city thought he would die and even though 24 bones were ultimately infected ,,, the story ended with the Lord miraculously and marvelously help to me to find the cure, the back surgeon becoming a believer , and Graham , healed is now a senior medical student starting orthopedic residency this July … and even Tuesday He gave to the Lord to help meet , greet and share Christ with 3 to 4 visitors at the Porch at Watermark … all the way through medical school . His whole life has been a testimony to the faithfulness of God . and his mother, me who had unsaved parents but who came to Christ at 9 was greatly discipled by hearing and seeing how to gain principles , pray , serve and hear the Lord from the Word and counsel through first the Navigtors Bible Study and 72 verses for life Topical Memory System , then at age 15 from the ILBP materials …as a basis … not every thing , but most as the Lord led .. We Spent our home years at a conference yearly where we all memorized and later dramatized books of Scripture as families or individuals ( SMF.org) we taught children at their summer camps so we could also attend . The Lord has led, helped and provided in ways we praise daily and all are serving the Lord and aquiring skills to serve others to show his love . this is not a forum for this discussion , i say that because even our time given to share the gospel each Sabbath in our time , 2 Saturdays a month for 4 years gave us books of precious experiences He Gave …. Giving your life to eternal purposes for others ,,,, I dont know where it is in his seminar, but the basis was there somewhere ….
It is time to put aside the wrongs and give Bill Gothard joy , comfort and restoration so that the family of God in America can quit defaming the name of Christ. Not perhaps to his former perhaps too honored status , but at least to allow him to attend ATI conferences with honor , and allow people to thank him and visit with him and encourage him in his final years . and see his humility that is really there now .. and take away the wrong in the media
Thank you for that heartfelt post. The Lord richly reward your love for Him and the children He hs given you to train.
We can tell you that Bill and the Duggars have been in contact almost continuously throughout Bill’s “exile”. They have a difficult row to hoe between worlds. I, personally, have no animosity towards them. I heard them actively praising and defending Bill at a conference I was at after Bill was long gone from IBLP. Not a word to shade him. I spoke with Jim-Bob personally at the same conference. The love for Bill was apparent, assuring me that they had repeatedly offered to have him live with them instead of all alone in that big house he grew up in.
” … 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.
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.
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.
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.
Bill is only interested in reconciliation on HIS terms and when he can’t he obfuscate’s by dismissing the accusations or by use of deflection. I see no evidence that he is repentant.
For what, do you think, he needs to repent? Reconciliation is a process where the aggrieved meets with the accused to work out the matter that is causing concern. we are getting less and less clear on what exactly Bill’s offense is. Recovering Grace appears, to us, to be a massive example of “Mid-Life Crisis” for ATI students. And lightening falls on the tallest pole. For all of that, we give account to the Lord of Hosts, Bill as well as those that accuse him.
Yes, but reconciliation, as you define it, doesn’t necessarily imply repentance. In fact of all the books and articles, I have read of these so-called reconciliations with Bill have always been on his terms, have always been on his turf and have never really ended in reconciliation… But of course everyone else is a liar or there is a conspiracy against him blah blah blah! You guys are as deluded and deceived as he is. The difference is you’re all his pawns and he will screw you over as quickly as his victims have been he is a narcissistic decrepit lecherous old man who wouldn’t know forgiveness if it bit him. You people are despicable.
Well, I know for a fact that a number of “reconciliations” have been far from on his terms. I would agree that they are not necessarily all on the other side’s terms. But, if you believe him to be “per se” as evil as you say, there would never be an agreement on anything other than the terms set by an accuser that would satisfy you, correct? You really should not revile Him like that. When a man curses, the Lord examines the one cursing to see if any part of their life and character matches the characteristics of a man that deserves the curse being given, and then applies that judgement on him. Few of us escape unscathed.
” … 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?
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.
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.
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.
That is a tad of a stretch to make that apply here, don’t you imagine?
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
I do wish you to know, I very much respect your willingness to respond so thoroughly and promptly to each of these comments.
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Pro 10:19 When there are many words, transgression is unavoidable, But he who restrains his lips is wise.
and to quote Hamlet but to use the male gender “The man doth protest too much, methinks”. By your own defence of him and your volume-ess words regarding Bill, you’re complicit in his sins Alfred.
Well, I certainly do not want to do that. What sins are particularly on your mind, Chris?
ah deflection is a wonderful thing ain’t it
State what you feel the crime is. No deflection here.
You are using exactly the same method that others report Gothard has always done. That Is he uses tries to control, manipulate and make those who criticise him that we appear to be concocting a conspiracy to undermine his character and ministry. What is even sadder is that he will neither openly and honestly respond to these allegations. What is more, the man is a coward who hides behind you and a bunch of hungry lawyers and lets you all cop the flack for what he has done; which is prey on young innocent girls and promote heresy which is an established fact. To top it off he acts like he’s the victim.
He avoids answering direct questions while pretending to be transparent. He is a deceptive dishonest manipulative narcissist who really only attract people he can control or who are like minded. At the end of the day once they and you have served your purpose; or you figure out he is a charlatan and attempt to expose him he will discard you like refuse as he has done to everyone else who crosses him. Even more pathetic is he portrays himself as this poor little 80 something-year-old man who is misunderstood that only wanted to serve Jesus. No… Bill Gothard has built an empire to himself using fraud, deception and above all pride and greed.
You keep asking us to defend our position when there are many books and a multitude of internet sites articles and forums exposing Gothard. Either they/we are all wrong and Bill is the holiest man on earth or you are spiritually deceived or incredibly dishonest.
This is deflection this is the method you use that he has taught and he groomed you with you are a duplicate of your cult leader, not Christ. Saying sorry doesn’t mean he is repentant it means he got caught out that is all.
You are as disingenuous as Bill Gothard is. Repent! Don’t tell me you/he is/are sorry tell God and repent.
No need to concoct – there was a very active Absalom-style conspiracy under way. What exactly you think Bill should have done to “openly and honestly” address the coordinated confusion and misinformation and hatred that was washing over him I have no idea. Hey, do you remember “Jane Doe II” in the 2nd iteration of the lawsuit, that claimed Bill had raped her . . . As well that she had been raped by her father and Dr. Copley and countless strangers as a sex slave? She was not telling the truth. And she was dropped from the case shortly thereafter. But her words made it into national publications. How would YOU “openly and honestly” respond to that?
And I assure you, Bill will NEVER portray himself as a “poor old man”. Where did you get that idea? We may have said things like that, which, if he read our blog, would be embarrassed by.
The multitude of blogs and books provide a convenient opportunity for those that dislike Bill to not have to disclose why. We have spent a lot of time on those blogs and books. We have found a stunning lack of interest in actually substantiating claims. Don’t be like that. Point out what you know. If you are going with “hearsay”, then, well, shame on you. At the very least, point out your top “proof text”. Chances are we have already challenged it. We challenge, you research and respond, we make sure the world can see all that is said. Your turn.
And one other comment. Be aware that you have said enough in the post above to be found liable for defamation. You are repeating the statements of others that we know to be false . . . As facts. And accusing Bill of being a pervert that molests children. See, that statement is called “defamation per se”, a statement which needs no further support to be called “defamation” and make you legally liable. You can’t prove it, and you clearly have malice against Bill. As you may recall, Melanie Trump won a hearty settlement from a plain old blogger last year, because he said, “Everybody knows that Melania was a high priced escort”. He believed it to be true based on what others said. But . . . It was false. And he got to pay. Stuff just like that is what got us into this mess to start with. So, be better.
One more thing Gary Smalley caught him with a young girl in his lap you didn’t, you only have his word against a multitude of women that you didn’t see him touch and you have the gall to call them all liars… what do you want pictures? How about showing some compassion and mercy towards his victims. Here’s why you won’t; if it is true your whole world, your whole lifestyle and most of what you believe collapses like a house of cards because its based on a lie.
The “young girl” was in her 20s, likely closer to 30 at the time. They were in a “dating” relationship, at least from what Bill told the Board, and told Gary personally. And we DO have her statement:
Gary confirmed to me personally the identity of the secretary. So . . . years later, that was her opinion of all that she experienced with Bill.
The problem is Alfred you aren’t a qualified investigator you are invested in Gothardism You can hardly be called objective and unbiased we don’t know how much pressure Bill and the board put on Gary to shut up or recant or even if he was blackmailed I am sure Larne would have a better Idea than you or your mate Dixie as to what occurred. This proves nothing buddy Larne was married to Ruth right?
here’s an observation Alfred there are upward of 60 30 reports over many years how is that nearly all the allegations show an identical pattern of abuse? It is possible that they all got together and made it all up but it is highly unlikely except in Bill’s conspiratorial mind. Pathological liars are great at why? Lying.
There we go again. WHERE are these 30-60 reports? See, they don’t exist. RG had gotten up to “60+” when we called them on it, suggesting that trouble was ahead in the form of a legal challenge. Immediately after that they put out a statement that had dropped to “30” and now with a nuance of a “troubling pattern that suggests”. All that is in our post on “New Math“.
Here is a suggestion. Read up on the McMartin Preschool case. That happened during the time we were living in California, the preschool being actually very close to where I used to work. There you had a whole lot of people saying the same things about abuse that had been going on there, allegedly for years. Problem was, NONE of it was true. It was called “Sexual Abuse Hysteria”, also a great topic to read up on. In support of that, consider asking why there were all of these tales about “footsie” and Bill in the last 5 years . . . and none in the decades preceding? It certainly wasn’t because people didn’t hate Bill previously. I remember posting on a large anti-Gothard email list back in the early 2000s. No form of dirt was off limits. It was there, BTW, I heard about Josh Duggar’s troubles as a 15 year old a decade before it broke as a huge national story. But . . . not a peep about “footsie”. What explanation might you give? *I* think it is because these things breed on each other, sort of a mob “hysteria”. The plaintiffs were magically having all of these detailed recollections 20 years after the fact, published them, put them in the lawsuit . . . and then, when the suit demanded corroboration, they were stuck. We saw case after case of close friends saying things like, “I applaud what you are doing, but no, honey, I can’t remember a thing of what went on back then”. I remember one plaintiff literally moaning about how her head hurt as she was trying to remember . . . anything. Pleading with others for any help they might provide. Suddenly, days later, when she had to “put up or shut up”, a crystal clear story emerged. Which, of course, she could subsequently never find anyone to confirm.
No, it makes perfect sense.
If Gary was under pressure, he sure didn’t disclose it to me. In fact, this all happened in that period of time after which the Board had turned from Bill. Look at the date stamp on the email. So, quite the opposite – he would have been perfectly free to have been as nasty to Bill as he wanted to be.
Larne would openly and violently dispute that Ruth was ever romantically interested in Bill. I have the testimony of others that suggest otherwise, but she is with Jesus. Regardless, I have asked him about his understanding of the “lap case”. As big of a deal as this was to Gary – and to the whole world that has heard it because of him – Ruth NEVER mentioned it to Larne. She told him that she sat on Bill’s lap more than once, but never told this story. My guess is that in the overall scheme of things this event was not that big of a deal to her.
The affidavit of Dixie has nothing to do with me. I do not know her. She provided this to, or with a view to, the legal team that was preparing to defend IBLP in the lawsuit. Rather doubt that she was lying, major staff assistant there, much loved and respected.
oh, another conspiracy against Bill.. the board had turned on him do you know how absurd this all sounds? tell me, Alfred, how many times does a man have to rape to be called a rapist how many times does a person molest a child to become a paedophile? Once, twice.. it was a failure in judgement Regardless of whether or not Bill and Ruth were engaged he went against his own principles on dating. He was the one to set the standard not bypass them because he was the bigshot at the top more deflection and misdirection.
For every indiscretion, there is a justification or explanation… of course, there is only Bill’s word against all those accusers you should have been a defence lawyer.
We have no idea what the Board is going to do, but we are not the only ones who believed that they had a major rush to judgment without all of the facts. All I can say is that they are pondering the situation as we speak. Let’s say that Bill was never given the opportunity to even hear the accusations that the Board – not RG – had against him. That was wrong, and now is the time to fix that. I can tell you that we believe this will turn out to be no different from the situation with the 17 plaintiffs in the lawsuit. We wait and pray and will see.
Bill admitted that he did not do right by Ruth in leading her to believe he was serious about marriage, then backing away. He confessed to “defrauding” her to the Board, and if you have been to his seminars, that term is exactly that. So it proves he is human. And he resigned over that, way back in 1980, these high, high standards. But, again as confirmed by her AND by Gary who interviewed her, he NEVER was inappropriate with her. Not even once.
30 isn’t enough to prove their case? More misdirection and deflection you’re not doing very well at this are you?
There are no 30, Chris. Look at the lawsuit – after all the beating of the bushes, that was all they could find . . . 17. 17, including two men. And then woman after woman that quit because she couldn’t pull it together. Openly contradicting their statements in the lawsuit. One of the plaintiffs contacted by a friend in just the last WEEK expressed shock over the amount of money she had been suing Bill for. When charges in the suit were read back to her, she said, “Well, no, that wasn’t right”. A WEEK ago.
There are no 30. There aren’t even 17.
Gary is a little more gracious than I am but then I don’t have to be as you’re not towards all these men and women that Bill spiritually psychologically and emotionally abused that you call liars. If and they were, if and they weren’t, and if and they may have been. The problem is God deals in certainties, not speculation. It’s not just about this it’s about the abuse of power and authority Bill has done both then tried to lie his way out. Isn’t it interesting that the bible only requires two witnesses, not 30? Why would all his victims want to reconcile with him? He needs to publically repent The obligation is on him to repent and then seek reconciliation no the other way round. We all know Bill was always wanting meetings and discussions with people to reconcile or hear their grievances.. always on his terms and his turf.
He should invite everyone to a big conference room on the neutral ground including staff, board members and past members and take open questions and give an open statement. At least Josh Dugger has the guts to do that. Bill is a coward
God deals with certainties, and He has precise steps of action. Here is what He says:
“Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses.” (1 Timothy 5:19)
Without 2-3 witnesses an accusation is not even supposed to be considered when dealing with an “elder”. Much higher standard than the rest of us. This is not 2-3 witnesses to similar events, but 2-3 witnesses about the SAME EVENT. This allows the matter to be examined. See, to my knowledge not a single charge that matters – even like “running his foot up and down my calf” – has a second witness. Not even a second person to whom the first person confided at the time. Where you can hear both accounts and compare and come to a conclusion. That leaves these matters as hearsay.
I know of one account in the lawsuit where the plaintiff had a dream in which she was being molested by Bill, then told the lawyers about it. Yup, they assured her it had to be real, put it right in. Later she said, “what if Im wrong, ____? what if my brain is playing tricks on me? what if Gibbs just led me on? regarding BG molesting me?” That is the exact quote. THIS is what was going on, THIS is the kind of stuff that convinced the lawyers that inherited this from Gibbs to bid farewell.
So . . . there is a charge with her name on it. It is quite specific in presentation. And it all came from a dream. So . . . does that count as a witness? Guess what, no other witnesses to that event will be found. If you had THREE of these, does that count as “2-3 witnesses”? I do hope you will clearly see – nope, no way.
WE HAVE DISCUSSED THIS BEFORE IN A JUNE 20, 2016 EMAIL TO YOU. JUST QUOTING THE PART OF THE LETTER YOU LIKE THE BEST, DOES NOT TELL THE WHOLE STORY AND IS THE SAME AS A LIE: Following is a quote from that email, 6/20/16.
“The quote you posted does not tell the whole story and is out of context. I have pointed this out to you before regarding verses. For a verse to be considered a theological statement it has to be taken in context, which is one of the first rules of any theologian will use. This is a rule Bill does not follow in his teaching. A verse may be inspirational or meaningful when we read it alone but for it to be theological sound it must be taken in context. This is no different from what people write or say. When you read Dixie’s complete statement it tells a completely different story, as Ruth’s statement is in reference to a misguided and nonfactual letter in regards to an upcoming lawsuit. She is saying if she was called on the witness stand and asked about the facts in the letter she would have to tell the truth. In this statement she is not supporting Bill only obeying God’s commandments of not bearing a false witness, that all her statement says, nothing else. She is not supporting or protecting Bill in anyway. Nor does it does it tell the whole story of the spiritual and emotional damage Bill inflicted on her which she has written about.”
I would suggest next time you post the whole letter but you might want to get Dixie’s permission first. Also remember she was still an employee of Bill’s at the time the letter was written. I don’t dispute the letter but the part you quote is misleading when taken by itself. It is out of context, but that has been Bill’s strategy all along to use letters out of the context they were written in. I can imagine that might also apply to the 30,000 pages of documents you read.
Lastly where did you get a copy of the letter from? Bill or IBLP? The letter was written in the form of a statement from an employee which would make it the property of the Institute not Bill. If Bill had a copy he would have to have stolen it when he left, as the letter was not addressed to him. I would hate to think Bill would have anything he took from the Institute. That would be taking money from the ministry that might have been given sacrificially by your aging mother or maybe me.
The snippet is given for simplicity, not for any other reason. It has been posted before. You would know me better than that, whatever you may think of Bill:
The entire statement says that the attempt to incriminate Bill WITH Steve on moral grounds was wrong. She knew them both, and testified that, although she had given Bill plenty of opportunities he could have exploited for immoral purposes, he did not. I really think it says exactly what the snippet implies.
The deposition was provided by Bill, his papers. The 30,000+ pages of chats are also his. So is the ministry, truth be told. But that remains to be addressed in other venues.
Let’s get this straight, Ruth did not “testify”, she was angry and made a comment to Dixie on the phone about something that she was accused of, that was untrue. Dixie wrote it as what appears to be a legal statement, not Ruth. I don’t dispute what Dixie said but your snippet does not paint the whole picture. Context is everything and that applies to the 30,000 pages of discovery you have too. But you still have not answered my question, where did you get Dixie’s statement from? Did you get Dixie’s approval to publish it?
OK, you have the entire statement. Kindly tell me whether or not that – in context – has Ruth stating that, with respect to being immoral or inappropriate with her, she would have to testify that Bill had never done any of that.
Yes, this was a formal statement that Dixie wrote out for the leadership, presumably the legal team, almost 40 years ago. It was written for Bill, was part of the legal dance, and was provided to us to help with Bill’s defense. No, we didn’t contact Dixie, but if you are in contact with her and find that she is offended, please let us know. The 30,000 pages of chats are part of the legal proceedings and belong to the defense, with some restrictions on dissemination. Anything put into a pleading, however, is “public”, and may be quoted and cited freely. One of the realities of legal actions, you lose so many rights as they pertain to privacy. Some of the women sought to avoid that be declaring themselves as “Jane Does”. The legal foundation for that is precise, and we we are convinced that it was abused for several, if not all of the “Does”. That is in the Motion for Sanctions as well.
Alfred writes: “OK, you have the entire statement. Kindly tell me whether or not that – in context – has Ruth stating that, with respect to being immoral or inappropriate with her, she would have to testify that Bill had never done any of that.”
Again you are trying to put words in Ruth’s mouth, the call to Dixie was a response to an accusation of immorality with Bill by someone on the LA committee. Ruth was always clear, she was not immoral with Bill nor have I hid that fact. The question of inappropriateness is completely different and that can be read in “Ruth’s Story”. Those behaviors are completely inappropriate in any workplace environment then or now, especially by someone in the ministry.
You still have told me who provided the statement to you, Bill or IBLP? Further more I have no idea why they would have sought that statement in the first place, we were never part of any lawsuit then or now. I can assure you if called to the witness stand Ruth would have said she had never been immoral with Bill. But, that would have been the only positive thing she would have said about him.
Ruth’s words are that, despite the fact that she gave him plenty of opportunities to “take advantage” of her, he only treated her in a “fatherly way”. That does sound like a blanket acknowledgment of the fact that, as she told Gary, Bill was NEVER inappropriate with her. I was given a letter she wrote to Bill, that says the same thing.
I have seen nothing in “Ruth’s Story” that rises to an evil level. And to make this a “work environment”? This was anything but that, despite the fact that money changed hands. A ministry, even warfare – army – would be better analogies.
I do not know under what circumstances Dixie executed this. Almost 40 years hence, Larne. Bill gave it to me. It is called a “deposition”. And I am puzzled by your statement about a lawsuit? There were not one but two lawsuits underway. They shut down about as fast as they were put up, but, yes, I am sure there was much activity getting ready for them.
one lies makes them all Liars Alfred? you’re grasping at straws
17 – actually a few more if you count some of the early shifts – 17 plaintiffs told similar tales, collaborating as they did in the days leading up to the lawsuit. Read the lawsuit, if you want, read all of that delicious $8 million dirt on Bill. ALL of their cases fell apart under the scrutiny of the legal process. 20 years hence, Chris. There is a reason for “statues of limitations”. Because the ability for the mind to accurately recall events goes way, way down with the passage of time. Suddenly things that didn’t happen just seem like they did. When challenged, we discover that we are remembering what we thought about the situation, or what we wished in it, or what others told us about it. Again, go no further than Gary Smalley. It took a lot of character for him to own up to his brutal mistake, but with his wife helping his recollection, he did it.
No straws being grasped! They had their “day in court”. With not one but two major law firms behind them, they having already invested perhaps a half million on this. The circumstances favor anything but quitting if there was any chance for even a single plaintiff with a single provable charge to make it. You really need to ponder that.
Of course, they colluded (note the sarcasm) helps your case but God holds us to a much higher standard than human courts I notice you avoided mentioning all the other abuses over the years. That suggestion of an open public forum that isn’t stacked with supporters isn’t a great idea for Bill, hey?
WHAT abuses? Not interested in imaginary things. You do see that we try to address the things we become aware of. So . . . what else is on your heart? Or so you simply believe everything you read?
watch my blog buddy I will have a response to your false religion in the next few days and I invite you to respond there not here. Not so much on this but on something else
Do let us know, will have a lot for sure.
At some points, I agree on the statute of limitations however in Australia that doesn’t exist on sexual assault.
To sum up your responses to my posts I do think that you at times avoid what I was majoring on and emphasise minor points.
Second, you seem to revel in your shallow victory when it isn’t over yet they can still file suit within 12 months. What if it doesn’t go your way? What then? Do you keep challenging the hell out of it? Human law and statutes are not always Biblical.
Bill can gloat and claim it’s a conspiracy all he likes and that simply shows his depravity nothing more nothing less. Your cronyism makes you complicit in that as well.
Bill’s idea and continued practice of reconciliation are weak like many of the mirrored weak apologies I have witnessed among his followers and the lack of sincerity in those apologies. That in my mind is an attempt to soothe one’s conscience it is not reconciliation and certainly not repentance. Bill would have made a great politician thank the Lord he never became one.
P.S. my website address https://chrissymonds65.wordpress.com/ My estimation of Bill’s theology and practice will be ready in a few days or so
We checked it out, fellow blogger. Have limited time, as you can imagine, but await your comments.
Let’s see. I doubt very much that claims of “sexual harassment” have no statue of limitations in Australia. “Abuse” to me suggests things commonly called “abuse”, not . . . foot tapping or hugs? “He almost kissed me”, which one of the plaintiffs cited as the worst physical offense Bill committed.
This is no “Shallow Victory”, brother. Again, just ponder two major law firms spending a half million dollars . . . on nothing?! Who has that kind of money to waste? This was a DEEP victory. And everybody who knows, knows it.
Until you yourself become the target of a conspiracy to destroy you, you can glibly say about anything you want about what Bill should or should not do. We have suffered this along with Bill, so you may detect a tad of an attitude. Just a little. The plaintiffs picked IBLP’s pocket – and that would be large donors and little donors, like my aged Mom – for $500,000, now in the hands of lawyers. They have savaged his reputation with falsehoods. It is FINALLY time for a touch of accountability here.
Stop reviling Bill. Or us. You have better things to do. I know you. Be bigger.