Pooh’s Think

… with comments

COTK, CREC, & Tyranny: Part 5

Dear Michael,

Andrew Sandlin’s tone in his most recent note to you is praiseworthy and the absence of blame in his explanation is equally commendable. This point becomes more apparent when you compare Sandlin to his former fellow confederate Douglas Wilson, who has no capacity to make peace and cannot make excuse for abusing sheep without blaming the poor souls he batters for the way he treats them. It’s always their fault. Besides, they deserve it. This is a good sign in Sandlin; it is one less symptom requiring treatment in his Wilson detoxification. However, before we roll out a Thanksgiving Day float in Sandlin’s honor, it’s important to observe that his breathtaking denial of collusion with Wilson in his crimes falls short. In fact, he and his fellow elders flunked their crash course in DW 101.

Normally, this would disappoint me. However, when I recall that Sandlin spent the last five years enabling Wilson in his relentless abuse of the saints, I understand his position.

Sandlin placed the bulk of his explanation in the middle paragraph, which states,

Your site mentions a number of events seemingly related to the CREC in which we are alleged to have been in collusion with unjust decisions. I can assure you and your readers, we know little or nothing about these events. We joined the CREC understanding it to be a confederate structure; and, while we may been naive or may have misunderstood what that expression really was supposed to mean, we basically tried to mind our own business and expected others to mind their own business on such matters. We are not attacking anybody or defending anybody in all the CREC complaints you mention: we just don’t have the facts and frankly have more important things to do than to try to adjudicate all of them. In this age of rapid electronic dissemination of accusations, all we can do is state what we know to be true in our own case. We cannot address all conceivable cases.

Sandlin essentially pleads ignorance here, pretending to be a combination of Cain — “Am I my brother’s keeper?” — and the Levite who passed by the other side after he saw a man on the road half dead (Gen. 4:9; Luke 10:32). Unfortunately, Mr. Sandlin’s story doesn’t square up with the written record, which happens to be the same record that Sandlin and his elders helped establish. Let’s begin with the easy ones.

Sandlin certainly knew about the RPCUS’s declaration of heresy because he was one of the first acolytes to give Wilson a “Get Out of Jail Free” card. To be sure, Sandlin’s defense of Wilson used the Wilsonian tactic of attacking one person — a straw man named “Joe Morecraft” — instead of the presbytery that drafted the resolution. This single post contradicts Sandlin when he claims, “we basically tried to mind our own business.” Indeed, if that’s what he calls “minding his own business,” then methinks he’s in the wrong business — especially since he now claims that he didn’t “have all the facts.” Furthermore, according to this post written by Sandlin, he also knew about the “Craft Morecaroni and Cheese” ad in C/A, and as a fellow confederate serving next to Wilson in the CREC, he referenced it with tacit approval.[1] So he cannot plead ignorance here, and he can’t honestly say, “We are not attacking anybody or defending anybody in all the CREC complaints you mention.”

Sandlin and his elders also knew about Wilson’s conflict with the OPC because Wilson reported it to the “Presbytery”[2] in 2002, when COTK confederates attended the meeting. You can read Wilson’s 2002 account of his emerging OPC problem at archive.org and not in the CREC’s official minutes, because in 2003 the CREC struck all references to this embarrassing event from its minutes after Wilson and Jones conceded that they misrepresented the facts in their 2002 report.[3] You know, it just doesn’t look good when your “Pope” gets caught in a lie — especially when he lied to his own confederation (“presbytery”?). But I digress. The point is that CPTK confederates attended these two meetings and they witnessed the CREC officially doctor its minutes to conform to Wilson’s revised story. So Sandlin may not have known about the OPC’s resolution, but he certainly knew about the OPC’s cause of action.

This brings us to RC Jr who was the subject of this incriminating post written by Mr. Sandlin. It pretty much slams the door on the old “we wanted to mind our own business” excuse and firmly places Sandlin in the category of HYPOCRITE. He wrote,

I was saddened to read the report of R.C. Sproul Jr.’s (and his fellow elders’) defrocking from his denomination. I do not know whose “side” is right and whose is wrong, or if both are partly wrong. I do know and appreciate the ministry of both Ken Talbot and RC. Jr., though of course I disagree with them on some issues and they with me. Though I have many presbyterian friends and greatly love and respect them, I am relieved that I have never been and never will be a presbyterian and eschew the frequent legality and litigiousness this form of church government fosters. My view is that the local church is the only church there is and that it should be governed by a group of elders (preferably more than two; I’m a “two-office man”). The congregation should be protected from tyranny by their elders by the possibility of appeal to a wider group of elders, though on a narrow range of issues — for example, credible charges of heresy or of moral malfeasance. I pray that God grants peace and rest to RC, Jr., Ken and the other men and families in this situation. Such tragic episodes consume valuable time and keep churches from their missional calling to advance the Gospel and Kingdom of God. (emphasis added)

This confirms that Sandlin knew the RPCGA defrocked Junior, and it confirms that Sandlin advanced Wilson’s spin that the RPCGA’s Declaratory Judgment was not final: “I do not know whose ‘side’ is right and whose is wrong, or if both are partly wrong.” In other words, he propagated the CREC’s talking points about JR and publicly undermined the RPCGA’s authority. But here’s the killer: he offered this opinion in the same breath that he acknowledged a congregation’s right to protection from immoral tyrants:

The congregation should be protected from tyranny by their elders by the possibility of appeal to a wider group of elders, though on a narrow range of issues — for example, credible charges of heresy or of moral malfeasance.

Does he think that the saints at Saint Peter’s appealed to Presbytery because they enjoyed litigiousness more than abuse? Does he think that the RPCGA defrocked JR for reasons other than “credible charges of heresy or of moral malfeasance”? Does he really think that protecting the sheep from punks like the St. Peter Four is a “tragedy”? Does he even think? This statement is unbelievable; only a CREC minister in good standing could have made it (which was the case). And while it does not prove that Sandlin knew the CREC reinstated JR, it establishes his sympathy for him. “What meaneth this bleating of the sheep in mine ears?” It meaneth that the CREC — including Andrew Sandlin and his fellow confederates — sanctioned RC to injure the very souls who a few months earlier sought cure.

This brings us to the “Solemn Charges” and the Letter Without Signatures. We have already noted that COTK put their hand with the wicked in the matter of the “Solemn Charges”; the same applies to the Letter Without Signatures, because the 2003 CRE minutes state that when the Evangelical Free Church of Pullman appealed to the CRE for relief, the moderator told them “that the CRE wouldn’t get involved.” The minutes then state that the confederation voted unanimously “to commend” the moderator for his handling of this affair, and “unanimously,” in this case, included the COTK confederates. So if Sandlin and his elders just wanted to “mind their own business,” and if they didn’t “have all the facts,” and if they “frankly had more important things to do” as he claims, then why did they vote? At best, they should have abstained on grounds of ignorance; but given his candid admission, they shouldn’t have even attended. This point becomes even more glaring in light of Sandlin’s words:

The congregation should be protected from tyranny by their elders by the possibility of appeal to a wider group of elders, though on a narrow range of issues — for example, credible charges of heresy or of moral malfeasance.

Think about it. When members of two congregations (including the elders of the Evangelical Free Church of Pullman who have since then delivered several warnings to their congregation about Douglas Wilson as well as private rebukes to Wilson and the Kirk elders) appealed to the CRE for a remedy from Wilson’s tyranny, Andrew Sandlin and his fellow elders “basically tried to mind their own business and expected others to mind their own business on such matters.” They had “more important things to do.”

Lastly, I cannot prove that Sandlin had any knowledge of Poohs Think earlier this year when the Kirk elders targeted the Metzlers for elimination. But given the number of times your blog pinged andrewsandlin.net, and given your incredible disclosures, and now knowing that COTK was in the middle of a protracted conflict with Wilson similar to yours, I’m hesitant to believe Sandlin’s denial. In fact, I think he’s lying.

Let’s be clear here. Andrew Sandlin and his elders were not in collusion with any unjust decisions of the CREC, as though they connived in a secret conspiracy. No, Andrew Sandlin and his fellow confederates extended the right hand of fellowship to sadistic beasts who carved their chief article of faith with a serrated edge in the flesh of God’s children. Andrew Sandlin and the COTK elders willingly aligned themselves in public confederation with wicked men to cast votes that insulated them from accountability and insured they could abuse the flock of God with impunity.

So, once again, Sandlin should quash any ideas about forming a new confederation, which according to him “would be bound by a theological and moral accountability with a wider Christendom that respects the distinctives, polity and decisions of the local church.” He has removed all doubt that when it comes to “moral accountability,” he would rather mind his own business and he expects others to do the same. And quite frankly, he has more important things to do.

_________________

[1] In the same sentence Sandlin gives Wilson a wink & a nod “to insult blood-washed sisters and brothers if they do not agree with him.”

[2] If you read the CREC’s minutes, you’ll witness a remarkable phenomenon whereby a duly constituted “confederation” consistently refers to itself as a “presbytery” and regularly invokes Presbyterian polity, at least when it’s convenient. This is classic Wilson, having it both ways.

[3] Wilson has a well-documented history of revising “the record” via official minutes. This subject alone deserves a thread simply because it cuts to the heart of his pathology.

November 27, 2006 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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