I think some personal reflections might be in order at this point. I tried to go to sleep earlier but felt compelled to communicate some things I have been thinking about lately. Maybe I could try to bring some clarity to this current controversy. Maybe I could try to boil some things down so that we do not lose sight over what this is all about and thus avoid unnecessary rabbit trails, hearsay, and somewhat of a witch hunt.
The internet truly is an interesting and amazing thing. We have the immediate search power of Google to find information, people, and writings in the matter of seconds. We can create a community of people from all over the world. We can bring together scattered bits and pieces of information into one forum for the world to see. In many ways it is like the tongue, it has the power to create and the power to destroy. What has occurred in this here blog and several others over these last weeks is something I never foresaw. How did this all start? What was my purpose in posting the things I have?
I know that many people out there, many of my old friends, are probably very angry with me. As I write this, it is currently 10:30 PM. I noticed that everything over at biblicalthought.com has been taken down. I was speaking with a brother on the phone a couple days ago and he predicted that such would happen. And for the record, as God is my witness, I have only made ONE phone call to another brother about this. There is no doubt that many people have called me, but I have called only one person and that was almost two weeks ago now. I have been in email conversations with a number of brothers, but that was primarily to make sure I had my facts straight and to seek council before posting certain things. Here is the God-honest truth: this whole controversy was NOT a consciously organized secret council of angry people who maliciously plotted to attack Bob Morey. The following analogy is more accurate to what has happened. Remember in the movie, Terminator 2, the bad cop who was sent to take out Arnold? That cop had the ability to morph into anyone he touched; he was essentially made out of a liquidly type substance. At one point Arnold somehow blows him up and he explodes globs of silver blobs that look like melted solder. But what happened next? At the time, the special effects were amazing, but all the silver globs that were scattered in the street began rolling back toward the center and eventually all of them merged together to reform the bad cop. I know, the analogy makes the “other side” (i.e. ex-FCC members) the bad cop, but we are not bad. That is essentially what has happened in this current outbreak and controversy. Essentially, Dr. Bob Morey blew people up who are part of the body of Christ. He blew many people up over many years. Yet he does it in such a way that most all these people just want to get the heck away and start over fresh. Even then, he often makes this very difficult for people to do. What has happened these last weeks is those blown up bits of people all on their own accord merging back together and creating a voice.
The internet has provided the means for some of these scattered bits and pieces to come together. People began to talk and stories began to be shared. Visible patterns of abuse and sin done by Dr. Morey began to emerge and become more evident. The DVD’s from his Pennsylvania days hit the internet. While I mentioned them, I had nothing to do with putting them on the web. The link to them was then posted in my blog as well as at BT blog, both times by people I do not even know. The controversy made it into the OC Weekly blog. I have no idea how it got in there, though I know that Mr. Arellano is not a big fan of Dr. Morey so who knows how he heard about it. But things took off over there as well. Other information came together and soon there were tentacles all over the place, like a game of shoots and ladders, people could slide from this place to that with a click, click, click. Clark’s Open Letter to Dr. Robert Morey was thus brought to public attention along with my resignation letter. But this merely describes how a spark turned into a wild fire. But what was that spark again?
For me a renewed interest in Morey began with this most recent exodus of people from the church. When I left the church in 2007, I did so quietly. I did not make one phone call or email to anyone in that church after that. I was not “burned” by Morey. My letter explains clearly why I left, and at that time, as I said, the last straw that broke this camels back was how Morey burned a good friend of mine, Clark Gallagher. Clark was Dr. Morey’s closest assistant and his “Timothy” (in Dr. Morey’s own words when he ordained us). Dr. Morey utterly vilified Clark from the pulpit on a Sunday morning. He had done it also to others before Clark. So recently, when I heard about this most recent exodus of people and more so the people that were vilified this time, well, that both shocked me and angered me (note: not bitterness!). It was a righteous anger, an anger based on justice. I have already at length in these posts described some of these people and how much they sacrificed for Dr. Morey, his ministry, and his vision (and of course by saying this I mean they did it ultimately for Christ). Let this third exodus serve as the “third witness” that really made Morey’s behavioral patterns evident. But that was not all: the DVD’s surfaced showing the same patterns of behavior dating back over a decade ago. Moreover, an email was received from an ex-member of Morey’s church back in PA and this person described the same behavioral patterns that so many are speaking out against now. Individual persons have also sent me their resignation letters from years ago, and again, the same patterns of odd behavior were used to deal with these people (mini exoduses).
Some people have made speculations about this or that. I have myself tried to stay away from any speculative assumptions and have urged any readers or commentors to do the same. There are enough witnesses and facts that speculative ideas are not even needed. In fact, as Clark pointed out in one comment, such speculation undermines what we do know. I have listed names, places, and events. Most of these people would not mind to be contacted. There are many people who left who I have not mentioned, mostly because I did not have their permission to list their names. However, the persons I have listed should be sufficient to open eyes. The pattern Dr. Morey uses is seen in each mass exodus as well as many individual persons (though I would add it is not the only pattern of abuse that could be mentioned). It is essentially this:
1. A dedicated person in the ministry who learns too much about the shady practices opens his or her mouth and dares to question things.
2. The person is either ignored by Morey or a Kangaroo court is set up where the legitimate questions are ignored and the concerned person has things flipped on him and is made to feel as though they are in sin.
3. Accusations of “slander and gossip” and later “bitterness” are slapped on the concerned person. “Slander and gossip” are Morey’s two favorite “flip-it” smoke-screen tactics.
4. The concerned person who dared to question is said to be under the influence of Satan and their mental health is questioned.
5. When they try to fight these absurd claims they are then labeled with “anger,” “pride,” “bitterness,” and even “hatred.”
6. When the situation goes public–usually by Morey’s doing from the pulpit–certain “evidences” are made up that allegedly beyond doubt proves the guilt of the concerned person. Never mind that no one has ever seen any of this “evidence” against any of these people. Morey has such a cult like following that most people believe him. Then the church buys it. Then the person is delivered over to Satan if they still persist to clear their name or call Morey on his unbiblical dealings.
7. Morey cuts off all communication lines with the person and will have nothing to do with them based on a faulty application of Titus 3:10.
8. The “burned” person leaves and just wants to get on with their life, but they have lost all their friends at the church as well as their previously solid reputation because they were vilified from the pulpit.
9. Then over time, the people of the church forget all about it. New people come in who know nothing about it and new leaders are raised up to run the church and ministry for Dr. Morey. The cycle then repeats itself. That is why I am concerned for this current batch of Moreyites. But it is because time and new faces in the church that these old scandals fade away and when a new one happens like the one just recently, many people either forget about most of what happened in times past, or the new faces know nothing of them. Also when one person goes through this “ringer” and suffers these same tactics, he or she is just that–one person, against the “renown” Dr. Robert A. Morey and all that goes with him. Who would most people believe, a common Christian man or woman who says Morey lied and slandered me, or would most people believe the Doctor who has spent his life preaching orthodox theology and defending the faith? He who has the microphone controls the situation. However, microphones are quite an antiquated invention these days, and this thing called the internet is quickly turning down the microphones of many pulpit bullies.
This last “slam job” on some really good Christians moved me to take action. Yet this action did not come about in any consciously planned out way by me. Upon first hearing of the ridiculous and evil accusations that were made against Tom Maxham, I did nothing. This all started when I emailed that old friend at FCC for something unrelated to all this, but in closing I asked him how he is able to make sense out of the fact that the leadership of that church almost always ends up leaving and almost always ends up with some crazy story/accusation slapped on them. He said from his point of view, Dr. Bob has done nothing but good for them and made them what they are, and they all left (which would include myself) because of pride. I felt compelled to try to set the record straight and remain silent no more. I emailed him a three page reply. That reply got back to Morey and viola, Morey and “the crew” at BT launched the most ruthless assault I have ever seen in my 12 years of being a born again Christian. I have documented much of that abuse of the brethren here in these last four posts. The many commentors have added much substance to back up those posts.
Dr. Morey uses smoke-screen tactics, red herrings, ad hominem attacks, and straw men arguments against those who dare question him in any way. He twists Scriptures like Matthew 18, 1 Tim. 5:19, and Tit. 3:10 to protect himself from questioning. He blasts his double barrel shotgun of “gossip and slander” charges. He repeats this so phrase so often that if you re-read all the blogs over there, “the crew” now uses that same phrase. Though the post on the Need for Biblical Warrant is now removed as I type. Then those who have sought to call him out into the light are viewed as malicious gossips and wicked slanderers used by the devil. This is another discernable pattern that he often uses. Getting people to think that the one questioning things is mentally ill is also another favorite of his. The problem, however, is that he uses these tactics so often that it allows these patterns to become evidently discernable. It is these patterns of abuse that span over many years that we are now exposing to the light (Eph. 5:11; 1 Tim. 5:20). When the voices get too loud, Dr. Morey moves to censor them and tell his congregation not to listen to the voice. But this move only makes him more suspect in people’s minds. People think, “what is he afraid of, what is out there, why doesn’t he want me to read this or that?”
When I posted my first “Abuse of Dr. Robert Morey” post, I did not in any way do it out of a spirit of malice, bitterness, or hatred, but rather on the one hand out of a sense of justice to blatant sin on the part of one who claims to be an elder, and on the other hand, out of a sense of love for my friends unjustly vilified and lied about. I cannot speak for the hearts and motives of all who have since commented on this site, but I know before God that my decision to post that first one was not easy. But after several extensions of mercy to that man, I felt a strong need to let justice at least have an opportunity to be had. It seems, at least in some measure, to be seizing that opportunity. Many good people remain silent for many reasons. They may fear retribution from the abusive leader; they may fear harm may come to the church, or they may fear that the process of moving on will be drawn out longer. But the bottom line is that many people remain silent because of some fear. And it may not even be abused people, it may be people who left because they saw an unloving shepherd, because they saw a misuse of Scripture, because they saw a poorly run church, etc. But they too have a story and a testimony to tell as well.
Let me at this point try to bring some things into focus. This whole thing has grown into a large amalgamation of criticisms, most in my opinion justified.
First, there are dozens and dozens of people who span at least two decades who are all saying that Dr. Robert Morey is guilty of virtually the same things. They are not, to my knowledge, claiming that he is guilty of adultery, of physical violence, or heresy. Rather, the almost universal drumbeat is that Dr. Morey is a dishonest man who lies and slanders not just unbelievers, but more dangerously, the body of Christ. This universal voice says that he uses people, manipulates them, and discards them in vicious ways when they question him. This universal voice says that he is shady and dishonest in his financial dealings. This universal voice says that he does not rule the church well, but rather uses it to his own advantage. Many of these voices say he is a downright thief. More could be said.
Second, these are real and serious issues that ought not to be tolerated. Yet they continue to one degree or another because Dr. Morey is a lone-ranger and there is no one to hold him accountable. These are sins which ought not to be overlooked, ignored, or forgotten about. But that is exactly what happens: sin is swept under the rug and eventually forgotten about. However, we chose now not to forget any longer–unless and until Bob Morey repents of these sins of which he himself knows. It is not a virtue to let evil have the day. Regardless of who said it, the idea behind the quote has become famous: “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” Dr. Laura recently said on the radio, “decent people are too often wimps.”
Third, Dr. Morey hides behind texts like 1 Tim. 5:19. But not only does he not quote the rest of the verse, he seems to forget that there are dozens of witnesses to his public slander and wild accusations made against good men of God. How many people were present when he publicly slandered and lied about Clark? How many people were present when he publicly slandered and lied about Tom and James? I could continue but it is getting late.
Fourth, it is crucial in all this to remember that Dr. Morey is NOT the victim! People will be furious with me and feel sorry for him because people like me are harming his ministry and reputation. Friends, brothers and sisters, he is the one who harms his reputation and many of you are the ones who are out there fighting so hard to repair it to the rest of the body of Christ. He is the one who makes very unwise and sinful moves against people or in running the church and thus he brings it upon himself. He is not the victim! The victims of his abuses, his slander, and his lies are numerous. Keep that in mind.
Fifth, Dr. Morey and his “crew” claim to have conclusive evidence to prove the guilt of these people. But guess what? No one ever gets to see this evidence. I made a public offer to come down to the church and see it. They denied me and said that I was publicly delivered over to Satan. It would have been nice to at least get something in the mail letting me know that this happened. Dustin Hoffman called the church many times to see the evidence, but no one called him back. Guess what again? They claimed to have such “secret evidence” against Clark, Javier, and others also. They probably have some on me too. I will be there as quick as I can to see it. The law says that the accused have the right to face their accusers and to see the evidence used to indite them. Let’s see it boys.
Sixth, if what we are all claiming is true, then Dr. Morey has disqualified himself as an elder. He thus operates under a false pretense, a false image. And if this is so, then 1 Tim. 5:19 does not even apply to him and he should step down from public ministry and stick to writing his books.
Finally, as I said, I know that many people will be angry with me for these posts, and many already are. But again, he is not the victim here. Look to history for the real victims of his dealings. Look to the dozens and dozens of people who speak out with a unified voice to his patterns of sin and abuse. All I have done here is open my mouth a few times and give a voice to others to do the same. The actions and reactions by Dr. Morey and his “crew” through these last weeks has demonstrated and undergirded much of what so many are complaining about–essentially, a serious lack of real love. I would encourage readers of this to read my last comment on Part 4 to see more of my heart and feelings right now. While Dr. Morey may dance with joy over the sufferings and ex-communication of fellow believers, this writer is saddened and grieved by both his many friends who experienced the abuses of Morey as well as simply feeling sad and sorry for Bob himself. And I am afraid for my few friends who are still there.
Let us not lose focus of the main issue and universal voice. The Bible says that there is one who is the father of lies and who accuses the brethren of all manner of evil to destroy their witness, reputation, ministries, and future. Sadly, there is a so called elder in Irvine California who imitates these ways.