The TBN War

From the Christian Post:

By Audrey Barrick, Christian Post Reporter

July 1, 2012|4:53 pm

Trinity Christian Center of Santa Ana (which conducts business as TBN) is petitioning the court against former employees Michael and Brittany Koper for failing to settle their dispute outside of court.

The Kopers, according to the court filing by TBN attorney Douglas L. Mahaffey, have failed to file any timely response to their demand for arbitration. TBN claims that the Kopers are refusing to arbitrate because they believe “their hush money agenda was advanced by the public forums.”

“The reasons for the Kopers not participating have been strategic,” according to the petition. “Since their termination, the Kopers have pursued ‘hush money’ by a media campaign to undermine the mission and reputation of TCCSA by making baseless allegations against TCCSA’s principals.

“Taking advantage of their access to financial and employment files, the Kopers absconded with large quantities of TCCSA corporate records, and now are systematically disclosing to the news media and other information-based organizations confidential information and trade secrets.”

Brittany Koper is the granddaughter of TBN founders Paul and Jan Crouch. She previously served as the chief financial officer, director of finance, corporate treasurer and director of human resources while Michael Koper worked with TCCSA’s general counsel.

The former CFO filed a lawsuit earlier this year, claiming that the board of directors at the Christian company illegally took advantage of more than $50 million in “charitable assets” for their own good. The lawsuit wasn’t against TBN, however. It was against attorneys of Davert & Loe who do some work for TBN. Koper claimed that the attorneys advised her to falsify public financial disclosures and government records after she discovered illegal financial practices taking place

The Orange County, Calif.-based TBN has made its own allegations against the Kopers. The broadcasting company, which has over 5,000 television stations, alleges that the couple made “illegal use of the corporation credit card of the president of TCCSA,” embezzled funds, and stole and converted to their own use property and assets of TCCSA.

In the latest court filing, TBN argues that the Kopers had entered into a written comprehensive arbitration agreement during their employment and have breached the terms of the agreement.

All disputes were to be settled outside of court.

“All efforts by TCCSA to move forward with arbitration and terminate the disclosure of internal records have been stonewalled by the Kopers who refuse to move toward a resolution of the disputes between the parties,”the court document states.

TBN is seeking a court order stating that the Kopers are in default, and enjoining any filings by the couple of counterclaims.

Here’s how to read this news story between the lines.  TBN hires all family for key positions to keep a centralized power base thinking family will be loyal and keep secrets. 

The gospel that TBN claims to preach actually reached out and transformed one family member making her an ethical and responsible Christian.

This lone Christian tries to do the right thing and get the books legal.  Grandma Jan pitches a fit.  Uncle Matt was caught with his hands in the cookie jar.  Granddaughter must be fired!

Now the TBN lawyers want to keep granddaughter from disclosing any more wrongdoings at the old TBN corral so they are filing motions to keep their “trade secrets.”

If I were on the jury, I would want to know just exactly what kind of “trade secrets” does a Christian organization have?  This is way better than a soap opera don’t you think?

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Same soup, different bowl

The Christian Post carries this news item:

purpose-drivenPastor Rick Warren has teamed up with his book publisher and a crowd-sourced graphic design company to create a new cover for his bestseller The Purpose Driven Life. The 10th anniversary edition will also have a rearranged title in hopes of attracting readers from the millennial generation, says the book publishing company Zondervan.

The cover for What on Earth Am I Here For? The Purpose Driven Life features a tree, but unlike the original life-like, two-toned design, it has brightly colored leaves on a white background.

    “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within are full of dead people’s bones and all uncleanness. So you also outwardly appear righteous to others, but within you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.
(Matthew 23:27-28 ESV)

You can change the cover of the book but the inside is still the same.

The Fall of TBN

Many of you have been keeping up with the OC Register’s breaking news story about Brittany Koper, the granddaughter of Paul and Jan Crouch, and the continuing saga of their implosion.

Koper, who worked for Trinity from 2007 to 2011, has accused the mighty Christian broadcaster of playing fast and loose with the ministry’s millions, and provided internal documents to back up her claims. She says itunlawfully distributed charitable assets worth more than $50 million to the company’s directors (her family members); bought a$50 million jet through “a sham loan to an alter ego corporation” for the personal use of the Crouches, as well as a $100,000 motor home that’s used as a mobile residence for her grandmother’s dogs; falsely reported “multiple residential estates” as guest homes or church parsonages to avoid income disclosures;  doled out meal expenses of up to a half-million dollars per company director; paid personal chauffeurs with Trinity funds disguised as medical payments; and engaged in “multiple cover-ups of sexual and criminal scandals.”

She has provided documentation to law enforcement and the Internal Revenue Service, and said she is cooperating with their inquiries (though neither the IRS nor the Orange County District Attorney’s office will comment).

I remember moving to Tulsa in 2007 just as the Richard Roberts/ORU scandal was beginning to unfold.  A lot of people didn’t want to believe it at first, including myself, but too many of the accusations had a ring of truth to them.  Eventually the whole story came out and Richard Roberts resigned in disgrace.

This situation has a similar feel.  What is ironic is that teaching young people about Jesus can have some remarkable consequences – like when they grow up, get an MBA and come to work on your finances when you aren’t being above board with them.

Something good has already come out of this mess – Brittany Koper.  She learned enough about the truth to stand for it even when it cost her family relationships.  Now we can pray that Paul and Jan will also learn the meaning of the real gospel, repent of their ways and be restored.

Mohler vs. Warren

To those of you not in the know, here is a brief synopsis of this week’s events:

Item 1: Andy Stanley, Pastor of North Point Community Church in Alpharetta, GA, recently preached his sermon “When Gracie Met Truthy,” in which he strongly left the impression that he does not consider homosexual practice to be a sin on the level with adultery (which he also, apparently, construes somewhat more narrowly than Jesus did). Stanley’s message unmistakably suggests that open homosexuality is compatible with both membership and leadership at North Point. Note: There is no way to link directly to this sermon, but “When Gracie Met Truthy” is sermon number 5 in the series “Christian” and is merely one click away from the first message in the series, which is available here. Hat-tip to Peter Lumpkins, whose blog was the first I saw bringing this to the world’s attention.

Item 2: In response to Stanley, Dr. Albert Mohler posted on his blog yesterday an article (rightfully) criticizing Stanley’s message. Mohler gave his essay the provocative title, “Is the Megachurch the New Liberalism?” Mohler’s is a solid and helpful treatment of the issues raised by Stanley’s sermon.

Item 3: In response to Mohler’s response, Rick Warren challenged Mohler, not to much to defend Stanley as to reject the analysis that Stanley’s waywardness is about megachurches rather than being about something else. Warren was incensed that thousands of other megachurches are implicated by Mohler’s essay.

Does anyone besides me find it hilariously funny that none other than Rick Warren should be the one to find offense at a doctrinal rebuke of megachurches?  Wasn’t it Rick Warren who last year had three non-believers teach his congregation shamanistic and occultic techniques to help them lose weight?

Wycliffe to submit new translation for review

From the Washington Post:

One of the largest Bible translators in the world is undergoing an independent review after critics claimed language in some of their translations intended for Muslim countries misses the essential Christian idea of Trinity: the father, son and the holy spirit or ghost.

Critics argue that using words like “Messiah” instead of “Son” and “Lord” instead of “Father” badly distorts the doctrine, in which God is said to be one being in three persons.

“If you remove ‘son,’ you have to remove ‘father,’ and if you remove those, the whole thread of the scriptures from Genesis to Revelation is unraveled,” said the Rev. Georges Houssney, the president of Horizons International, a Christian organization that works extensively with Muslims and himself a translator of the Bible into Arabic.

Orlando, Fla.-based Wycliffe Bible Translators argues the translations have never been about avoiding controversy, but choosing words that most accurately reflect the Gospels: Some concepts relating God to family members don’t make sense in some cultures, so the language needs to reflect that.

There is a word for what Wycliffe has done and that is appeasement. As has been often quoted:
An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last. ~ Sir Winston Churchill
Because Islamists are so violent and bloodthirsty and prone to outrage over the least little offense, Western civilization has taken the stance of appeasement – hoping if they don’t offend the Muslims, then they will get beheaded last.  To wit, Rick Warren and his efforts to find common ground with a religion that is diametrically opposed to everything Christianity stands for.

Wycliffe, Tyndale, Luther and other Church fathers died or were martyred defending the faith that today’s milquetoast Christians are so willing to compromise.  If there was any doubt that The Apostasy is now here – let it be banished.

2 Thess 2:3 NASB 3 Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction,

Bible gets endorsement from Rick Warren

In an article from the Christian Post

A growing disconnect between Bible ownership and Bible reading in America has made many Christian leaders throughout the nation worried.
Although approximately 88 percent of Americans reportedly own a Bible, less than half of those people read the Bible more than once a month, a previous study found.
Looking for a way to resolve the problem, several concerned leaders within Christian Bible agencies, denominations and ministries, gathered together this week in Orlando, Fla., for the Forum of Bible Agencies North America Summit.
Realizing that change began with their own selves first, more than 300 Christian leaders signed the Uncover the Word Commitment pledging to practice daily Bible engagement in their own lives as well as encourage it within their spheres of influence.
Mega church pastor Rick Warren and the president of National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference Samuel Rodriguez joined the call to action as well, challenging their fellow leaders to rebuild Bible engagement in North America.

I am greatly encouraged that Rick Warren has taken a pledge to start reading his bible.  Perhaps he will learn how to disciple his flock without inviting apostates to lecture from his pulpit.  Perhaps he will develop a biblical worldview instead of Fabian Socialism and communitarianism.

I will also pray that he reads from something other than The Message. There is hope even for someone like him!

Understanding The Times 2011

This past weekend I drove up to Minneapolis, MN to attend the conference hosted by Jan Markell’s ministry Olive Tree Views.  Grace Church in Eden Prairie was the host and was a wonderful facility.

Mark Hitchcock kicked off the conference by talking about 2012 and the doomsday prophecies about the world ending because of the Mayan Calendar. Joel Rosenberg followed and talked about the Day of the Lord (Joel 3), the implications of dividing the land and the recent move by the Palestinian Authority in trying to unilaterally declare a state.  On Saturday morning, Joel finished by discussing replacement theology and how we can best help those in the Middle East.

WITG_LGCaryl Matriciana introduced her new video Wide is the Gate (Vol. II) and showed a 15 min clip from the movie.  I had the privilege of meeting Caryl in the lobby afterward and was blessed by her genuine warmth and graciousness.  During the movie clip several well known ministries were shown as examples of the current apostasy in the church.  More on this in a moment.

Brannon Howse then presented a subsection of his teaching on the Trojan Horse focusing on Fabian Socialism and the push for a world wide universal church.  He too mentioned several well known ministries that fall under the apostasy label.  His message though was hard hitting, accurate and biblical.  Meeting Brannon and Caryl at the conference were highlights for me.

After lunch, Bill Koenig talked to us about the role of think tanks in Washington D.C. and how the game is played inside the beltway.  Eric Barger finished up the day with a presentation on Chrislam.  Eric’s presentation was well documented and nailed the blatant hypocrisy of churches hosting Chrislam events but not one mosque doing so.

Before the last session, Jan mentioned that several people had expressed some displeasure over the hard hitting expose of apostasy in the morning sessions. Perhaps these people had never heard Jan’s radio program before where she tackles these issues or perhaps their toes were still smarting from being stepped on – in any event, Jan handled the situation with grace but stood firm on the truth.

I recommend that if you aren’t familiar with Caryl Matriciana or Brannon Howse that you look them up and avail yourself of some of their materials.  Thank you to Jan Markell and Olive Tree Views Ministry for hosting the event.

The Human One?

The Christian Post reports that the new version of the Common English Bible (CEB) will change the phrase ‘Son of Man’ to ‘the Human One.’

The publisher of the new version is hoping it will make the Bible understandable and attractive to as many people as possible. To that end, the new edition of the CEB has made several “bold” translation choices, including changing Jesus’ “Son of Man” title to “the Human One.”

In keeping with postmodern apostasy and the latest Emergent heresy – I hereby offer some more “updates” to the bible to make it more “culturally relevant.”

  • Change ‘holy’ to ‘relevant’ as in be hip and cool just as your Pa in heaven is hip and cool.
  • Born again becomes ‘spiritual renaissance’
  • The Ten Commandments would become the Ten Conversation Starters.
  • A ‘New Creation’ becomes a spark of the divine within you.
  • Hell becomes ‘the dark night of the soul.’

Feel free to modify and change the bible to your liking!! Just make it say what you want – right?

Note: for those lacking a sense of humor or who just can’t comprehend irony – the above is said in jest to make a point.