Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Christian Lawsuits and Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood

The good folks over at SBC Today seem to have a great deal to say about Christians and the evil of going to court to settle disputes. Whereas a March 12 SBC Today article stayed online for nearly a week without a single comment, a March 11 post about the Sheri Klouda lawsuit, written by Mr. Tim Rogers, has received over 140 comments. In a comment to that particular post, written with the same dogmatic style that characterizes the black and white nature of most of the writers over at SBC Today, Mr. Roger's makes this statement:

No Christian should be involved in taking another Christian to court.

A few in the comment section challenged the dogmatism of the comment, but many others agreed. I think this kind of thinking - and writing - illustrates one of the reasons there may be polarization of positions in the SBC. Asolute words such as 'never' or 'always' - or absolute phrases like 'no Christian' or 'every Christian' - leave no room for genuine reflection and dialogue.

Just a short race around the blogosphere gave a much broader and kinder answer to the question: "Should a Christian take another Christian to court?"

From Christianity Today:

"Am I saying that a Christian must never sue? No. There will be situations in which one has no choice but to seek legal recourse to resolve a conflict with another.

From the General Secretary of the Assemblies of God:

If all avenues of adjudicating a matter within the context of believers have been exhausted and the offending party refuses to correct the wrong, then the offended believer must balance Matthew 5:38–48 and 6:14,15 with Romans 13:1–5. The pivotal questions will be:

(1). Is my desire for a redress of injury motivated simply by personal gain, or am I involving the secular power of the court to uphold justice and prevent lawlessness?

(2). If I bring action before a secular court, will such, in the context of American (rather than Corinthian) society, bring the church and the cause of Christ harm?

(3). Am I totally honest with my claim (or defense), or am I seeking through deception to obtain (or avoid) an unjust compensation which is more (or less) than the injury suffered?

(4). Since the Holy Spirit will never counsel a believer contrary to the Word He has inspired, after a thorough season of prayer what course of action "seems good to the Holy Spirit?"

(5). As an additional safeguard, what is the counsel of other believers who are in a position of leadership or eldership in the body of Christ of which I am a member?

From a group of evangelical Christian attorneys in commenting on I Corinthians 6:

Some groups believe that a literal reading of this passage in the original Greek language does not refer to secular court lawsuits at all but refers instead to the improper use of unfit persons within the Corinthian church to render judgments.

An even smaller group of people believe that civil lawsuits are not “smallest matters,” and, therefore, 1 Corinthians 6 does not apply to lawsuits.

(Our belief is) that believers have the necessary resources to skillfully arbitrate the various issues and problems that pertain to life. Going to court, while necessary in some instances, should, in general, be a rarity, and a last resort.

We should seek godly, wise, Spirit-filled and directed counsel within the church to resolve our differences.

From a Christian Think-Tank:

Does Paul specifically command that lawsuits is to be avoided for Christians in 1 Cor 6? Probably not . . . If the cases of a dispute, the believers are supposed to go before the church. If one party WONT, they are to be treated as an outsider (and lawsuits are fine in those settings--under stewardship). If both parties go, but one consistently wont listen to reason, they are to be CONSIDERED AS OUTSIDER and then lawsuits are okay. (See Matt 18:15-17)

From China Missionary Watchman Nee after saying that Christians are not to sue each other over church or personal matters:

As citizens of a state, however, we have the right to enjoy the freedom guaranteed by the constitution. Christians can enjoy the same freedom as others. If a school forces girls to cut their hair (editorial comment: 'or step down from teaching Hebrew'), then parents can sue the school, and we can help the parents in their fight against the schools. It is the freedom of individual citizens to keep their hair. There is no law that says that a person cannot be a citizen of the Republic of China if he or she keeps long hair. A school principal cannot say that a girl can no longer be a student if she has long hair. This is a matter of personal liberty. If someone asks me to intervene in this matter, I will. Nevertheless, we have to be proper in our attitude. We may invite those for a meal, go to the court together, and then drive them home afterward. In such matters we should be free from personal feelings. We are here to fight for the truth only. If the post office writes a letter saying that they will not deliver Bibles (or teach the Bible), we can invite the postmaster to a meal and still sue him. A Christian can fight for his rights under the constitution. Yet we are fighting for the truth . . .

From the Bible expositor Matthew Henry

“If the matter be small, which we may lose without an considerable damage to our families, it is good to submit to it [legal nonresistance] for peace’ sake.”

Anyone who is versed in Matthew Henry's commentaries understand that his method of interpretation is to understate the obvious by stating the opposite (i.e. 'small' matters submit to legal nonresistance vs. 'large' matters submitting to legal resistance).

It would seem to me before anyone assigns evil to Dr. Sheri Klouda, that a few questions ought to be asked:

(1). Were there attempts to reconcile this situation through third-parties prior to the lawsuit being filed?
(2). Was there an unwillingness on one party to either return phone calls or answer emails when a resolution was being sought?
(3). Is it Sheri Klouda's desire to become rich through this lawsuit, or are there other motives for her actions - motives that involves other people besides herself?
(4). From a human perspective, is the cause of gospel hindered more by a bright Hebrew professor being unable to teach the Hebrew language to men who will exegete Scriptures (the job for which she was trained), or is the cause of the gospel hindered more by the courts settling a dispute that one party may have been unwilling to resolve?
(5). Is this a small matter?

I would encourage Mr. Roger's neighborhood to think through the above questions and ask themselves if they themselves have sought the answers - or know someone who has. And, finally, this Klouda issue may be a good lesson for us all. The world is not always a black and white horizon - there are sometimes gray cloud(a)s. And, unfortunately, to entrench within a black and white ditch is one of the reasons resolution may often be hard to obtain.

In His Grace,

Wade Burleson


Anonymous said...

Why, oh why can they not see the logic of what you are saying?

I'm serious.

wadeburleson.org said...

Maybe they do.

Lin said...

(5). Is this a small matter?

It is to those who were not effected. To them, she is just unfortunate road kill on the way to a more complete and narrow CR. To them, she is not a sister in Christ who has been professionally and financially harmed by her Christian brothers.

Bob Cleveland said...

We believers are quick to feign outrage at the devil, running on about him and how he's doing stuff like prompting people to guzzle wine at dinner, getting people to sue folks over trivial wrongs like ruining one's career and family economy, all the while looking out our windshields past our radar detectors.

We've lost our collective sense of outrage over things like the Klouda affair, and when that happens, we're doing nothing much more than imitating Christianity.

This isn't about biblical facts. It's about power, and one man's willingness to trample on lives in order to subjugate others to his personal preferences.

This one matter would keep me from ever becoming a baptist if I weren't already one.

Tom Parker said...

I think the SBC will survive after Dr. Klouda wins her case.

Kevin Bussey said...


You suckered me into going over there. It is kind of like a car wreck. I'm sorry I did.

Chris Johnson said...

Brother Wade,

You are correct to say and imply that Christian lawsuits are distinct and different from the pursuit of the "unity" provided for Christ's body through Matthew 18.

Some choose never to avail themselves of Matthew 18. It is only to their detriment and their pursuit never brings Glory to God and His church.


Chris Johnson said...

Brother Wade,

Just so I am clear on the use of the word “never”. It is being used for those that do not choose to use Matthew 18. That way it keeps my opinion out of it.


Anonymous said...

I have generally tried to stay out of this, but you make a great point, Wade - one I have never thought of before.

If a public school administrator overhears one of my children talking with another child about Jesus and then suspends her, should I just say nothing? What has happened is unconstitutional and illegal. Is it righteous to just roll over? What about all of the other children who will not be able to speak about Jesus if this unjust rule continues?

Should we not have Christian lawyers? What about groups that fight the ACLU, like the American Center for Law and Justice? Should they just say nothing and suffer wrong?

This thinking actually denies that we live in a democracy built upon the rule of law. It cuts Christians off from having legal recourse when laws are broken.

I believe that Paul was saying that we should let things go and suffer wrong when things are done to us personally instead of being litigious. I agree. But, in justice issues, you are not just fighting for yourself, but also for others. Because we are blessed to live in a land where cries of injustice are heard, if there is no other recourse, then perhaps an appeal to Caesar is appropriate.

Perhaps. Again, the Lord, God's Word, and the counsel of the church would need to be involved.

Tim G said...

Though I did not write the article and yet agree with most of it, your use of the understanding of those at SBC Today as "roadkill" is over the line. No one that I have read or talked with even comes close to considering her that. She is a Christian sister in whom some of us disagree with her approach to this issue.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Tim Rogers makes this statement in SBC Today: “No Christian should be involved in taking another Christian to court.” I say, “No Christian should put out some one who was a good teacher and doing a good job.” When PP took over as President, she went? For those who do not know, Wade found out that Sheri Klouda had a problem because of losing her position at SWBS. Husband had been in the Hospital for sometimes. Bill’s had stack up on her because of loosing her teaching position. He sent out a help sine for her, and servile thousand dollars were raise in a very short time to help this wonderful teacher in a time of need. My question to you Mr. Roger’s is: “how much did you send to help this lady out?”
“The Old Gray Fox.”

Alan Paul said...

I used to think in such black and white terms - it encompassed my entire theological way of thinking - and worse yet, I got my black and white thinking mostly from others as opposed to the Bible.

Later, after having been a Christian for a few years with a little experience under my belt, I told my brother early on in his Christian walk after hearing him talking in the same black and white terms about some now-forgotten theological point, the longer you are a Christian, and the more you seek to walk genuinely with Christ through the messiness of life, the less you see in black and white and the more the gray areas pop up and you don't have simple, trite answers you once did. I am not sure my theology has, at it's foundation, changed much (I still believe that you should not, if you can help it, take a fellow believer to court over a civil issue), but I can certainly now see, after observing the Klouda case, as well as the cases of those "investment advisors" who ripped off other brothers and sisters in Christ by stealing their money in ponzi schemes, that some times, it is necessary to enforce justice upon those who refuse to repent and engage honestly those they've wronged with recompense. After all, is that not what God says He put the authorities in place for in Romans?

Black and white theological thinking makes lazy thinkers of us all. It gives us comfort and allows us to box up God with a nice little bow on top so we can control Him and His Word to us. We are never challenged because all we have to do is repeat some well rehearsed answer when confronted with a sticky situation such as the Klouda case where there is obvious injustice. If we say, "Women are not to be in authority over men" and that's the extent of our answer, then we don't have to engage the consequences of Patterson and his ilk has inflicted on Klouda and her family. We can just offer our easy answer, feel justified about it because, "by God, it's in the Bible!" and move on.

God is not pleased.

McOxen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
McOxen said...

(I'll spare my views of women in the church. Though I dislike the spectrum, it should suffice that I'd likely be 'left' of most everyone here. I've been livid about Dr. Klouda's situation since I first heard about it.)

That said, I can't get over these words:

"The fact that you have lawsuits among you means that you have been completely defeated already. Why not rather be wronged? Why not rather be cheated? "

It seems that even in the face of radical injustice, especially from brothers and sisters, we are called to a higher place, something that may not make sense.

So, this is my question for all of you: Why not rather be wronged?

Tim Rogers said...

Brother Wade,

First of all, thank you for informing me that you were going to write a post using me as your subject. (something you said that you do and I never received and information from you)

Second, I believe you will find that I have never advocated never taking anyone to court. I believe that if a public school system were to discriminate against my daughter you would hear from me for your lawyers contact information in order to speak about my legal rights in correcting the situation. (But, don't worry, I already have his information as he has already contacted me with some kind of information concerning a post I had in 2007)

Third, for you to make such an accusation as I have advocated never using the legal system in legal matters tells me that you have no idea about my personal life. Once again you have tried to paint someone in a position without knowing anything about them. You see, Brother Wade, my oldest biological brother was murdered in Bull Head City, Arizona. His murder is unsolved even though the authorities had information concerning the killer. His killer got away because they did not have the evidence to convict. If they were to re-open his case I would be on the front line making certain this person came to justice. If this person were a Christian today he would still be taken through the justice system. I would not seek and civil remedies, only criminal. If this person were not a Christian, once the criminal phase was over, then I would seek civil.

Fourth, maybe you need to contact people, especially before venturing into Mr. Rogers' neighborhood. If you had contacted me you would find that this information was readily available instead of pulling out of context some quote and then advocating that is what it means.

Fifth, you need to let your other commentors know that when I speak of taking people to court, it is Christians taking other Christians to court over civil matters that I say should NEVER, NEVER, NEVER, NEVER, NEVER happen. Oh, did I say that Christians should never take other Christians to court concerning civil matters?



CB Scott said...

Tim G.,

You are a good man and more sound theologically that most here. Yet, even though I am in diametric opposition to Lin on most all thing theological she has a point that must be understood through compassionate eyes.

I promise you that on the day Dr. Sheri Klouda lost her job based on the reasons she was given she felt not unlike "roadkill" as Lin has described it.

Lin's illustration is hard and harsh, but painfully accurate.

People have spit on Dr. Klouda's head and told her it was only rain. It just did not have to happen. There was no reason, logic or sound biblical principle for it. It was wrong.

I do disagree with Lin in her saying the reason for it was "a more complete and narrow CR." In saying that she does not know what she is talking about in the least, but she is Ten Ring on how Dr. Klouda was treated.

That should bother us all and, frankly, my brother I am having a very hard time understanding why it does not.


wadeburleson.org said...

Mr. Rogers,

You write:

I believe that if a public school system were to discriminate against my daughter you would hear from me for your lawyers contact information in order to speak about my legal rights in correcting the situation.

Tim, is discrimination against your daughter a felony or misdemeanor in North Carolina? Is discrimination against a woman Hebrew professor a misdemeanor or felony in Texas? Or is it possible that both are civil matters?

Why do I ask?

Because you write in your last comment:

You need to let your other commentors know that when I speak of taking people to court, it is Christians taking other Christians to court over civil matters that I say should NEVER, NEVER, NEVER, NEVER, NEVER happen.

I look forward, forward, forward, forard, forward to your response.

Couldn't resist. (wink)



Pamela said...

Trivial means what it means (of very little importance or value; insignificant). It seems that the verse is pretty simple to understand unless there is a different Greek definition for what the translators translated as 'trivial'. If this is a correct translation then I think it is pretty clear what types of things the Bible says people should not go to court over. I do not know what the culture was back in those days but the word trivial would imply that they were going to court over minor disputes, NOT situation where money was stolen, children were not being provided for by ex-spouses, being fired in a way that is against the law, etc.

Tim G said...

I do understand what you are saying. "lin" to me was saying that I or others who disagree with her approach were treating her as such, NOT that Dr. Kloudia felt that way. She may have indeed, however, I nor anyone I have spoken with are treating her in that manner. That was my point.

Tim G said...

If I may jump in with your response to Tim R, your question to Tim R assumes SWBTS is guilty, which has not been proven and might be wise for us to not presume guilt nor not guilty until such time as the case has been decided.

wadeburleson.org said...

I am assuming SWBTS is guilty of what Tim?

Discrimination of a female Hebrew teacher of males because she is female?

Nobody denies she was dismissed because she is female.


One side argues it was their right because of a 'religious' conviction.

The other side argues that it is matter of breaking contract and a violation of her civil rights.

Again, nobody denies she was not wanted because she was a female.

Please show me where I am 'assuming' anything.

Tim Rogers said...

Brother Wade,

Let's see. Is discrimination against my daughter in NC the same as discrimination against Dr. Klouda in Texas? What does the EEOC say?

I do not believe there is an EEOC issue here. Was the EEOC contacted? If they were not--Why? Also, is the public School system in NC the same as a Private Religious school in Texas.

Oh, One other thing. You have an excellent proof reader on staff there at Enid. You probably need to get him to proof your title.


Tim Rogers said...

Brother Wade,

You write; "Nobody denies she was dismissed because she is female." Then you write; "Please show me where I am 'assuming' anything."

Here is where you are 'assuming'. She was not dismissed, she RESIGNED.


Alan Paul said...

PuddleGlum said: Why not rather be wronged?

If we should respond this way every time, shall we then, because the offender is a Christian, let injustice run rampant?

Tim G said...

Tim R answered the question you asked me exactly as I would have answered - she resigned! She was not dismissed.

Robin Foster said...

Tim R

Now you did it, you went on the testimony of a respected scholar and seminary administrator in stating that Dr. Klouda resigned.

Be ready to be called the "L" word and I don't mean liberal.

Anonymous said...

Wade (or anyone else),
I've just recently heard that Klouda "resigned". All I along I thought she had been "fired". Which is it and can anyone point me to documentation or anything to back it up?

ezekiel said...

At the end of the day it is all about Justice and where one finds it. Paul's instruction was to be carried out in an environment of just christians, able to judge and provide justice among them. To decide right from wrong. Sort of odd how we can trust our "authorities" to dispense justice in a criminal case yet deny them the authority to dispense justice in civil cases. What a world.

Is it only me or do others find it ironic that in today's religious environment of "grace and mercy" the religious leaders are the last to provide it and the first to demand it?

How do we cloak our inability to rid the body of sexual deviants under "grace and mercy" yet turn out one of our own to a cold and hungry existence? Where is the grace and mercy in that? Protect thieves and perverts, pastors that can't leave the women alone all because "they have a family to feed". Even in the OT there was provision made for widows, orphans but in the new day, the NT, the commandments of No other God before me and Love your neighbor are just by words to be remembered when it suits us.

We can justify the treatment we dispense in the name of Christ yet act in a manner totally opposed to the love we are supposed to have for a sister or brother.

You can sit around and argue a verse of scripture and how it applies all you want. But just remember, that has been done and condemned before.

Matt 23:23 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the others.

Don Smith

Only By His Grace said...


You just did an excellent article about church staff abusing their power bt leading women coming them for counseling into have sexual relationships with them to having sex with minors in the church or community.

Does this mean that a Christian woman or parent cannot take staff member to court for breaking the law? It seems the churches had ample time and means to remove these men from the ministry but did hold up their end of the contract.

If in cases such as this, would it not apply to other cases such as embezzlement? I wonder if the Annuity Board cheated some of these theologues out of their retirement benefits, openly and blatantly, would they go to court to sue the AB to receive their just compensation when not only their well being was at stake but that of their spouses, also.

I have no ready answers; however, I find in the laying down a hypothesis like your articles which is attacked again and again and defended with just as much vim and vigor that eventually we come to a much better idea of what is the truth about these difficult subjects.

As far as The Truth goes none of us possess it. When someone says they have The Truth, I want to stay away from that someone as far as possible.

I just came on and have not read the comments. I am sure they will be helpful as always. I love the argumentation and find it very beneficial to my spiritual growth.

Phil in Norman.

wadeburleson.org said...

Tim, Robin, and Tim,

Okie dokie. I am so dead wrong. You guys are so brilliant. You have convinced me. I have 'assumed' Dr. Klouda was forced out, Your words have hit home tonight. Dr. Klouda resigned. Yep. She wanted to move to Indiana. How could I have been so blind?

(1). Sheri Klouda resigned because she hated the house of her dreams that her family had just purchased in the metroplex and she wanted to move to Indiana. I'm so sorry I assumed she wanted to stay at SWBTS.

(2). Sheri Klouda resigned because she had grown weary of the job of her dreams (teaching Hebrew at SWBTS) - the very job she that drove her to excell academically as she took her daughter to school and had her daughter sit in her lap during lectures at Criswell as she worked hard to graduate at the top in her class. Dr. Klouda really wanted to teach in Upland, Indiana at a college - not a seminary. She was being held back in her academic career at SWBTS. Yep, you guys nailed it. She really wanted to be in a college in Upland, Indiana. I'm so sorry I assumed she wanted to stay at SWBTS and SWBTS wanted her out.

(3). Sheri Klouda resigned because she just didn't like the fact that all of the doctors for Pinky's very serious heart condition were in the metroplex, and she wanted to separate her husband from them and move to Indiana, where he has since suffered a major heart attack. I'm so sorry I assumed she wanted to stay at SWBTS and SWBTS forced her out.

(4). Sheri Klouda resigned because she really didn't want her daughter to graduate from the school she loved, but rather, she wanted to transfer her daughter to a school in Indiana where her daughter did not know a soul. I'm sorry for assuming she wanted to stay at SWBTS.

(5). My word, gentlemen, I'm so sorry for assuming Southwestern didn't want Dr. Klouda on faculty. For heaven's sake, to assume such a thing just because (a). she unexpectedly does not show up in SWBT's next semester's academic catalogue as a Hebrew teacher, (b). she was told she would be given a good reference if she was quiet in leaving, (c). she was not given privilege of even going through the tenure process - even though she occupied a tenure position, (d). she was told she could 'work in the library' until she got another job, but without any specific details about the alleged 'offer,' and without any assurance the library job would last beyond a semester, and (e). she feared for her academic future if she said a word about her dismissal . . . shoot, I'm so very sorry for assuming SWBTS did not wish Dr. Klouda to remain on faculty.

And finally, for heaven's sake, what in the world would ever make me assume Southwestern was trying to get rid of Dr. Klouda because she was a female? What has gotten into me.

You guys are so brilliant. You are so right. She resigned. And she filed suit for the simple heck of it. Goodness, you guys have convinced me. Dr. Klkouda wanted to move to Indiana.

Thanks, guys, I'll try not to assume anything else. And of course, I sure hope you guys do as good of a job of helping twelve other people see the light as you have me.



wadeburleson.org said...

Pastor Hilliard,

You ask a good question with good spirit.

A direct answer:

Administration insisted Dr. Klouda file a letter of resignation - with promises of good recommendations if filed. Of course, any rational, unbiased soul will ask if the resignation was forced or voluntary.

Read my comment above and draw your own conclusions.

Tim G said...

Though I am impressed with your writing ability, you still must admit there is a difference in being reassigned vs. being fired.

Glad I (we) could educate you! :)

CB Scott said...

Tim G.,

Point made. Point received. I now see where my comment to you was in error.

I also thank you for receiving what I said in a good spirit.

Now, Tim's, if I may.

When I was five years old some really big kids used to get me on the ground and twist my arm behind me and demand I say uncle. I would hold out as long as I could, but in the end I said uncle. Then they would stuff grass in my mouth and hit me until I said I liked it.

The resignation of Dr. Klouda is very much like that. She said uncle. She should never have had to do that. It was wrong to put her in the position into which she was forced.

BTW, I never sued those big kids, but a few years later they all paid their debt. :-)

We all do. It is usually just a matter of time. No one can run over people forever.


Chris Johnson said...

Brother Wade,

Did Dr. Klouda not have a way to approach this using Matthew 18, since she was the one offended by her Christian brother?


Tim G said...

That deal with "lin" was too easy. I must have caught you on a slow night.

Now, how come you were not around when I tried the "payback" method? I could have used some help! :)

wadeburleson.org said...


It was tried. Three times. A couple of the notes, emails, and attempts should be exhibits. We'll see.

CB Scott said...


I second Wade's comment to you relating Matt. 18.


Alan Paul said...

Well said Don Smith.

Anonymous said...


Last fall Patterson and Klouda had a meeting that the judge ordered them to have. Klouda offered to settle the case. Patterson rejected her offer outright and refused to make any counteroffer.

Only By His Grace said...

Some are being disingenuous when they say Dr. Klouda resigned. It is sort like a murderer cornering a child on a cliff. The child jumps to her death to get away from the murderer;

Then someone says, "Well, she did jump of her own free will."

Give me a break and be forthcoming. You know why she resigned.

She was asked to resign by Paige Patterson and told she would never have tenure as long as he was there. Do not leave the impression that she just resigned and left or that she would have left even if it were not for PP.

Phil in Norman

wadeburleson.org said...


That is correct. The matter would be over - finished - had SWBTS made things right at that time, or the time before - or the time before.

wadeburleson.org said...


Like Don Smith above. Well said.

Anonymous said...

Here is the link proving that Dr. Klouda offered to settle the case and that Patterson refused to make any counteroffer.


Robin Foster said...


Also remember that a respected scholar put his reputation, livelihood, and future academic career on the line by stating that he offered her a job in the seminary without loss of benefits or salary.

I find is ridiculous and a wishful desire to believe that Dr. Blaising lied. Remember, who told us for over a year that she was terminated? Now we find a resignation letter.

BTW, to state that she was forced to give a resignation letter in order to get a good reference AFTER she found a job is a stretch to say the least. She didn't have to give a resignation letter because she already found a job. But she did so anyways.

Bro. Robin

Chris Johnson said...

I think I understand how it has arrived at this point…..It is just astonishing to me that the church is not involved to hold anyone accountable. That should be Patterson’s or any Pastors highest priority.

It is just really, really sad!


CB Scott said...


Back to the subject of your post, I think.

It is true that Tim Rogers has never said he would not take advantage of the judicial system we have here in this country under certain circumstances.

The circumstances under which he would use it is what differs here.

Maybe a somewhat broad brush was used in the "Mr. Rogers" portrait you painted of him, don't you think?

Of course, he does have some really neat sweaters and he is a pretty good neighbor. :-)


Anonymous said...

Hey Wade, I'm sure no one would object if you posted a comment on that March 12th post over there at SBCToday. :) selahV

wadeburleson.org said...


Thanks, I just might. By the way, I thought you wrote a good post.


As you can tell, the post was based upon a comment that made it clear that a Christian should never sue.

CB Scott said...


It really does not matter if Wade or anyone else said she was fired, terminated, she resigned or she just pulled a Hank Snow and was "moving on."

It was wrong for her to have to find a job under the circumstances of which she was forced.

It does not really matter what the judge or the judicial system says now or later. It does not matter if it is called breach of contract or discrimination. It does not matter if she became president of Harvard.

The issue was and always be that she was treated with less care and compassion than Christ expects of us who follow Him. It was wrong and it was sinful.

Furthermore, it is just shameful that it has gone as far as it has without all the SBC rising up and saying; ENOUGH.

We are vocal about SBC presidential candidates, missionaries, baptism, tongues, Landmarkers Calvinism, Free Willers, rapists, muggers, thieves and the warming of the earth, but we fail to see the wrong done to a woman with a husband who can never again support his family.

We have failed here and may God have mercy on us all.

Chris Johnson has had the perfect pulse of this thing all along and no one seems to listen.

We fought to the blood for inerrancy and fail to see sufficiency.

No wonder good kids are leaving our ranks as if we all have rabies.


Wayne Smith said...

Tim Rogers,

Again I say that CB Scott is RIGHT ON about all of this MESS.

In His Name

Anonymous said...

I think Fundamentalism is going out the door.

But I think the image of Dr. Klouda having to give her own blood to support her own husband will go down in church history as one of the lasting images of it.

greg.w.h said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lin said...

Though I did not write the article and yet agree with most of it, your use of the understanding of those at SBC Today as "roadkill" is over the line. No one that I have read or talked with even comes close to considering her that. She is a Christian sister in whom some of us disagree with her approach to this issue.

18 March, 2008

It wasn't aimed at SBC Today in particular but to those who are more focused on her 'reaction' than the 'action' against her in the first place. I have seen her raked over the coals, I have heard quite a bit of defense of Patterson and co., and lots of discussion on how this lawsuit will make it possible for homosexuals to teach theology at our seminaries!

What is missing? How this affected Dr. Klouda personally, professionally and financially.

(except for this blog)

If that is not treating her like 'road kill'...as if she, personally, is a not even a consideration...then what is?

If you were offended, maybe you had better take a second look. How this situation is being addressed by those in the SBC is a clue to what is really in some hearts out there.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info. I think I get the picture.

Lin said...

" Yet, even though I am in diametric opposition to Lin on most all thing theological..."

Huh? On what? Secondary doctrines?

"I do disagree with Lin in her saying the reason for it was "a more complete and narrow CR." In saying that she does not know what she is talking about in the least,.."

Why was she forced out, then?

Lin said...

Lets say for a moment that the Trustees have a moment of clarity and decide that Patterson needs to go. They don't want a showdown so they start making his job difficult by not allowing him to do many of the things he is doing. No outside speaking engagements, all his speeches have to be vetted, expenses are scrutinized with a fine tooth comb and not allowed, etc., etc.

This goes on and more and more of his responsibilities are given to others. Everyone is seeing he is a lame duck. he sees the handwriting on the wall and starts to try and negotiate some things. They tell him that he can stay but only in the capacity as director of the welcome center. He can work there until he finds something else. He can keep his same salary and benefits. He knows this is a created position and is not permanent.

He must move out of Pecan Manor and give up all his perks.

They also tell him that they will ONLY give him great references and his severence pay if he signs a resignation letter.

Well, he has huge taxdermy bills that are now not going to be paid by the seminary anymore like they used to be. And he has outstanding debts to the millner.

He is in a serious jam. He has no recourse because they hold all the cards. And he is going to have a horrible time finding another presidency real quick. (He does feel blessed that his wife is not seriously ill or that he has a kid in high school who depends on his income)

He has no choice. He takes the deal. What else can he do?

Was he forced out? Or did he simply 'resign'?

ml said...

Wade or others, call me crazy, but interestingly I think one could make a sound hermeneutical argument that Matthew 18 really does not apply to this issue. Since SWBTS is an institution of a convention and not a church, I really think it stands outside of the parameters of Matthew 18. Besides look at how that played out with Gilyard and Patterson when others attempted to use Matthew 18. The only ones who need to fear the legal authorities when such authorities are not vehemently threatening to the cause of Christ are those who do wrong. Much NT talk is used here but what about OT texts like Amos and especially Micah 6:8? There were serious words about injustice being a part of the Israelite community. Crookedness is not overlooked. As ole Vance Havner used to say, "It is never right to do wrong in order to do right." Regardless of what one believes about woman in ministry, although I do not see a seminary as equal to the church context and much different than a church setting [in fact we could wrangle over the legitimacy of the seminary concept biblically, but that is for another post], God is interested in the process as much as he is in the results.

ezekiel said...

Jeremiah appears to have a lot to say to those who would argue the finer points of "fired" "forced out" or "resigned". I wonder what our Lord thinks when he sees his people get all wrapped up in trying to justify injustice, and unrighteousness by dancing around in the liberty of the english language.

Jeremiah 9:1
Oh that my head were waters,

and my eyes a fountain of tears,

that I might weep day and night

for the slain of the daughter of my people!
Oh that I had in the desert

a travelers' lodging place,

that I might leave my people

and go away from them!

For they are all adulterers,

a company of treacherous men.
They bend their tongue like a bow;

falsehood and not truth has grown strong in the land;

for they proceed from evil to evil,

and they do not know me, declares the Lord.
Let everyone beware of his neighbor,

and put no trust in any brother,

for every brother is a deceiver,

and every neighbor goes about as a slanderer.
Everyone deceives his neighbor,

and no one speaks the truth;

they have taught their tongue to speak lies;

they weary themselves committing iniquity.
Heaping oppression upon oppression, and deceit upon deceit,

they refuse to know me, declares the Lord.
Therefore thus says the Lord of hosts:

Behold, I will refine them and test them,

for what else can I do, because of my people?
Their tongue is a deadly arrow;

it speaks deceitfully;

with his mouth each speaks peace to his neighbor,

but in his heart he plans an ambush for him.
Shall I not punish them for these things? declares the Lord,

and shall I not avenge myself

on a nation such as this?

Men that call themselves by Christ's name but display an uncircumcised heart, lacking justice and righteousness, yet oppress widows and orphans and turn away justice in Her gates?

Jeremiah 9:23 Thus says the Lord: Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, 24 but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the Lord. 25 Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will punish all those who are circumcised merely in the flesh— 26 Egypt, Judah, Edom, the sons of Ammon, Moab, and all who dwell in the desert who cut the corners of their hair, for all these nations are uncircumcised, and all the house of Israel is uncircumcised in heart.

ezekiel said...


Sort of makes one want to take a look at the membership, doesn't it? Wonder how many were baptized into SWBTS and how many got there by transfer of letter, hmm?


Lam 3:36
to subvert a man in his lawsuit,

the Lord does not approve.

Ex 23:6 You shall not pervert the justice due to your poor in his lawsuit.

And for all you precious saints that would claim Klouda left freely and on her own, remember this one.

Ex 23:1 You shall not spread a false report. You shall not join hands with a wicked man to be a malicious witness. 2 You shall not fall in with the many to do evil, nor shall you bear witness in a lawsuit, siding with the many, so as to pervert justice,

irreverend fox said...

I'm with a couple of the other commenter’s here...I don't even know what to believe about the Klouda issue now.

Now all of a sudden we learn that she chose to resign instead of being reassigned.

I guess one can't even trust the internet for news anymore.

Next thing someone will tell me is that Obama is really not a Muslim or the Anti-Christ.

CB Scott said...


Dr. Klouda was forced out of her position simply because she is a woman. Nothing more, nothing less. It was wrong. It was sinful. It really has nothing to do with the CR of which you know very little. I make that statement based on reading your comments.

Due to the fact that most of your comments related to theology of primary or secondary issues, or whatever, are couched in your constant need to grind an ax in someone's head, (and that head usually belongs to a preacher or someone of the male gender) I do generally, stand in diametric opposition to most all things you say.

I do agree with you when you are, in my not so humble opinion, right.

You are right about Dr. Klouda feeling like and being treated like "roadkill."

Yet, due to your strange need to grind an ax in the head of all things Patterson, or preacher or male, for whatever reason; you do as much to "muddy the water" relating to the wrong done to Dr. Klouda as do those who hide their heads in the sand and blindly defend those who were and are involved in the sin against Dr. Klouda.

In other words; your private agenda here is not helping to bring anyone to see the truth about the wrongful and sinful thing that have been perpetrated against an innocent woman who was simply doing what she was called and hired to do in one of the top six seminaries in the world for the advancement of the Kingdom of God by helping men and women alike to read the Word of God with understanding and academic excellence.

She did nothing wrong and the fact she is a woman teaching Hebrew is not wrong.

She is not teaching pastoral disciplines. She is a language teacher.

In truth, there are men teaching pastoral disciplines today in our seminaries who are far less qualified to teach in those disciplines due to their never having served as a pastor of a local church.

Some who are teaching pastoral disciplines today have so little true experience serving as a pastor they are seriously limited in their capability to teach the practical aspects of the ministry. That is a shame and disgrace in and of itself.

Yet, we remove a truly qualified teacher of Hebrew simply because of her gender and claim we are doing it because she is not "pastor qualified." What a joke. It would be funny if it was not for the fact that so many obviously believe it is defensible and in doing so they give every person with an ax to grind a platform to feel vindicated in throwing stones at us all for any reason they dream sufficient.

I hope I have answered your questions.


Lin said...

"I hope I have answered your questions."


In the words of my favorite President: "You know so much that just ain't so."

But it did show me you have an 'ax to grind' with me. :o)

CB Scott said...


To quote a man who would have been a far better president: "I could have won a million buck bettin' on your response."

Lin, you again, prove my point by debate without substance. Since it is baseball season I will say: You are still batting a 1000. :-)

I will leave it with you to have the last word on this because what has happened to Dr. Klouda is far more important to be discussed that would be both of our "axes." Would you not agree? Do well and prosper.:-)


Tim G said...

Are you not the same person posting on the anti Bellview leadership blog?

Being a technical writer, I tend to come across blunt sometimes. However, I do my best to not attack people but rather focus on the situation or issue.

Truth is not many even knew or do know the specifics about this case. Why is putting out the rest of the story attacking Dr. Kloudia? Maybe someone who has access to all the court documents ought to publish Dr. Kloudia's resignation letter along with the other documents being spilled into the internet. Or at least ask why we have yet to see this document?

Lin said...

"Lin, you again, prove my point by debate without substance. Since it is baseball season I will say: You are still batting a 1000. :-)"

How in the world can I defend myself against the accusation, from someone I have never met, that I have a private agenda here? That is simply YOUR opinion.

Can I not simply hate injustice done to others that I am seeing quite a bit these days within Christendom?

You imply I hate men and pastors which is ridiculous. It is simply a matter of percentages that many acts of injustice are perpetuated by pastors because most are male. If a woman did this, I would be equally outraged.

You are doing to me exactly what many are doing to Klouda when they keep saying, 'she resigned'. You are painting a false scenerio based upon your perception that does not exist. It isn't nice.

I will leave it to Wade to tell me if am muddying the waters. If I am, I will definitly go away.

BTW: I do not dislike you as you think...I simply disagree with you. I was a bit taken back when you got so personal.

Lin said...

"Are you not the same person posting on the anti Bellview leadership blog?"

What is your point?

"Why is putting out the rest of the story attacking Dr. Kloudia?"

I take it you did not much like my scenerio about Patterson being forced to resign? :o)

Anonymous said...

Tim G,

The "resignation" letter is in the case file that is publicly accessible. (And you don't have to travel to the courthouse in Fort Worth to get it.)

Don't ask others to do your research for you. The document is already public. So the answer to your question ("Why have we yet to see this document?") is that you haven't seen it because you haven't taken the initiative to get a copy of it, something that any member of the public can do.

Tim G said...

lin, I missed that scenerio about Patterson. I must read it I guess.

My point was that since it public, and so much has been published, why not include that? As for doing my research? My friend, you have no idea what I have researched and do have - now do you?

Nice try but - did not land!

Debbie Kaufman said...

In my opinion, Sherri Klouda had more done to her than a offense. She was terribly wronged, and her family has suffered greatly. She was abused. This was total control and abuse for the simple fact that she was a woman. This is why I have a problem with the submissive doctrine and the women being quiet doctrine. Women have been abused by the church and by men and women who use this approach, expected to take it and say nothing. Women have been more hurt than edified by incidents such as Sherri Klouda's. You can punch me, knock me down and not expect me to do whatever I had to in order to stop it.

I don't think this is what Paul had in mind when he wrote scripture, especially given the fact that both he and Christ elevated women far above their position at the time. All scripture fits together and does not contradict. Just my 2 cents worth.

Tim G said...

lin, I read it - you state that in your scenerio he would not lose any benefits and yet then you state he would have to move out of Pecan Manor - which is a loss of a benefit. Your analogy does break down.

Sooo, here is a question for you:
Does an employer have a right to move employees around? It is a yes or no question only.

Kevin Scantlan said...

I would be interested in their views about the lawsuit in Missouri brought about by the Missouri Baptist Convention against Windemere, Missouri Baptist College, Missouri Baptist Foundation, The Word & Way, and the Missouri Baptist Home.

CB Scott said...

Tim G,

I certainly do think the Klouda-Patterson situation does make some of us feel like the character Philip Nolan in the short story, Man Without A Country.

I do not think it is fair to ask for a yes or no answer to your question to Lin due to the unique belief most of us in ministry have relating to being "called" of God into certain types of ministry.

I do not believe you would deny that a woman can be called of God to do certain and specific things just as can a man.

Therefore, I base my doubt about Lin or anyone being able to just give a yes or no answer to this question you have presented. There is just more to the dynamics of this situation than an employer moving employees around. The seminary is not a cotton mill or a steel plant. A seminary is a place where God called people work, teach and learn.

There is a difference, my brother. Or at least that is what Dr. Patterson always told us at SEBTS.


Anonymous said...

Tim G,

Do you have a copy of the "resignation" letter? It is a yes or no question. If not, my point about you failing to do your research is proven. If you do have a copy, then your comment bemoning its lack of publication makes no sense because in that case you could just publish it yourself.

Why are you complaining that a public document has not been posted on the Internet by bloggers? You can get a copy yourself.

Anonymous said...


A straightforward reading of 1 Corinthians 6:1-8 shows that Paul was strongly condemning the Christians of that church for airing out their disputes in a secular court ... in front of unbelievers. There really aren't any serious nuances of interpretation.

You said, "Just a short race around the blogosphere gave a much broader and kinder answer to the question: 'Should a Christian take another Christian to court?'"

I quite think that abandoning a straightforward reading of the Scriptures for a straw poll of the blog world is pretty much an interpretive stretch ... at best.

The tragedy in all of this is that grown Christian folk just can't seem to reach a behavioral compromise. Selfishness is a pathetic exhibit of human behavior, whether one is right or wrong.

If wrong has been done, this should have been handled within the church. Leadership in the SBC should have stepped up to the plate and made it right. It should not have required the involvement of lawyers and judges.

Bob Cleveland said...

I don't pretend to be a scholar or anything, but Paul pretty much starts out identifying the problem he was addressing, that was going on in Corinth. He comments in Verse 2 that they ought to be able to judge trivial matters without resorting to outside courts.

That word, trivial, to my uneducated eyes, means "elachistos .. smallest least:
a) in size
b) in amount: of management of affairs
c) in importance: what is the least moment
d) in authority: of commandments
e) in the estimation of men: of persons
f) in rank and excellence: of persons..

according to Thayer's.

Strong's says " elachistos; least (in size, amount, dignity, etc.):

Nobody seems to care that the Klouda matter doesn't represent THAT.

A lot of people seem to think firing Dr. Klouda, because she's a woman, is trivial.

God help us.

wadeburleson.org said...

Mr. Baggett,

The short race around the blogosphere was to read what people felt about your so called 'straightforward reading of Scripture.'

It is not as straightforward as you might think. That is the point of my post and I appreciate you illustrating it in action.

wadeburleson.org said...

Good word Bob.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Geoff Baggett,

You said "Selfishness is a pathetic exhibit of human behavior, whether one is right or wrong."

Even if Dr. Klouda is dead wrong biblically doing what she is doing, I have a hard time seeing how the charge of selfishness would stick to her.

If she was single and trumpeting women's rights, then that would be one thing.

But for her to have to take care of her sick husband, yea, even having to give her own blood to take care of him is a whole different matter.

I could see one trying to argue she is showing a lack of faith [even though I'm not interested in arguing that], but selfishness seems out of the question.

I've certainly been wrong before, but I have the eerie sense that something very, very cruel may have happened in the denomination and for whatever reason, we've been asleep.

Is the SBC straining out a gnat and swallowing a camel as a denomination?

Where is the compassion? Do we really want to call concern for a woman having to give her blood to provide for husband "sentimentality"?

I think God could snuff the SBC out on this one.

Anonymous said...

Geoff Baggett,
Paige Patterson turned down Matthew 18 attempts by failing to negotiate or didn’t you read about this in the above comments. Chris Johnson and others accepted this fact.

Steve said...


I always enjoy reading the womens' comments here, especially Lin's and Debbie's.

Lin is kind of like the litmus strip in those experiments Coach used to show us in high school. She always alerts us to the presence of guys who grew up thinking what females had to say never did quite measure up, even if what she says wouldn't draw much attention if signed by a preacher dude. Lin, you could simply post Scriptures and some of us would Harrumph right up and act insulted.

Bob Cleveland, you are always Dead On. Keep it up!

Anonymous said...

The "trivial matters" that you refer to is a use of hyperbole on the part of Paul. One needs to remember that in interpreting the passage. He pointed out that believers would someday judge the world, so human conflicts in this life are (by eternal comparison) trivial. I don't think that anyone who refers to 1 Cor. 6 as cause not to pursue lawsuits among Christians is in any way trying to "trivialize" the sufferings of anyone ... including the aforementioned court case.

Mr. Burleson,
I know very little about the Klouda case. Like I said in my earlier comment, the entire situation is truly tragic, on a multiplicity of levels.

I believe the only thing I illustrated for you is the vivid contrast between two views of Scripture:
1) "This is what the Bible says ..."
2) "Yeah, it seems like the Bible says that, but ..."

It's the fundamental difference between conforming our actions to the Scriptures and attempting to conform the Scriptures to fit our actions. All of us are guilty of the second from time to time.

Actually, my statement about selfishness was not directed toward Dr. Klouda. It was directed toward the entire idea of lawsuits and courts in general, where everyone seems to be out to get "their way," and all parties believe their way is the "right way." I would never accuse Dr. Klouda, personally, of selfishness. I apologize for making anyone think that with my comment. Really, I do.

Tim G said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bob Cleveland said...


I don't see interpreting "trivial" as hyperbole. If one were to do that, I'd have to wonder what dividing line, or criteria of judgment, one would use to sort the hype from the real stuff.

I don't want to read my preconceived notions into scripture. I think there's a $10 word for that sort of thing.

Tim G said...

I did not know we were in a points competition pertaining to research. Wow, things do change quickly.

What was your point? Mine was not about not having or not getting. It was about asking the question as to why, when one group produces so many pieces of information to slant opinion, do they not produce it all?

Really a simple question. Not a request. Nice try at changing the subject.

Anonymous said...


Does Dr. Patterson have a pastor? Does he have a church? What is his pastor's view on this? What is his church's view? Surely his pastor has looked into this and has made a ruling, no? Surely his church has become involved when a member is accused of this type of thing and is taken to court, no? Why have we not heard from Patterson's pastor, his church, or his spiritual accountability? Are they just silent or does he not have any? Why has his church not come out in his defense? I know that I would if a member was wrongly accused of something. Isn't that what shepherd do? Protect the flock?

I think that was a pretty big deal among the Anabaptists - local church authority, discipline, and shepherding, no?

Anonymous said...

Tim G,

And my point is that if you think a particular document is relevant for knowing the whole story, then why haven't you taken the initiative to get a copy of it when it's in the court file for anyone to see?

You're upset that someone else has not posted the "resignation" letter, when you could get a copy of it yourself directly from the court without having to rely on a blog to provide it for you.

wadeburleson.org said...

Mr. Baggett,

I did not read ONE person who said, "Yeah, this is what the Bible says, BUT . . . "

Would you please point out of whom you speak?

If you cannot name one person - and give the exact quote that merits such an accusation from you - then I hope you see that your comment is nothing but polemical, without factual basis and contributes absolutely nothing to this conversation.

wadeburleson.org said...

Alan Cross,

Paige Patterson's pastor is Bob Pearle, pastor of Birchman Avenue Baptist in Fort Worth - former IMB Trustee - and a participant in the group of trustees who did not want Wendy Norvel elected as VP of the IMB - because she is a woman.

Hope that helps you understand the situation.

Anonymous said...

When one of you has a grievance against another, does he dare go to law before the unrighteous instead of the saints? 2 Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is to be judged by you, are you incompetent to try trivial cases? 3 Do you not know that we are to judge angels? How much more, then, matters pertaining to this life! 4 So if you have such cases, why do you lay them before those who have no standing in the church?

It is pretty clear that Paul expects these disputes between brothers to be judged. With Patterson on one side, Klouda on the other, who among us has standing in what church that can judge the case? What mechanism, what venue of just judges is available to Klouda today? Can anyone name it or them?

5 I say this to your shame. Can it be that there is no one among you wise enough to settle a dispute between the brothers, 6 but brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers?

What does it say about our denomination, our religion when the only recourse for a brother to get justice and have his case heard is to take it outside? What does that say about our ability to judge and provide justice? Or do we just say Patterson is the judge and he is a law unto himself? If we do, what separates us from the pharisees and scribes?

7 To have lawsuits at all with one another is already a defeat for you. Why not rather suffer wrong? Why not rather be defrauded? 8 But you yourselves wrong and defraud—even your own brothers!

Can we have a brother wronged and seeking justice if there were no injustice or unrighteousness to begin with? If Klouda had felt loved, and provided for, treated as we would treat ourselves, would there really be any need in any judgment to begin with?

All you guys so adamantly opposed to taking it outside the church ought to be just as adamant in offering a solution. What court/church do you want this tried in? Where do Patterson and Klouda have their case heard and justice provided. What court/church do we try the case, discover the facts and render just Christian judgement?

Come on, step up to the plate and give us some places and names of judges.

Don Smith

Anonymous said...

CB Scott,
If you knew Lin, you would not have claimed she knows very little of the CR, nor implied that she is hostile toward preachers and males, nor made the accusation that she has a private agenda when writing about Dr. Klouda other than decrying the same injustice that you do. You may not agree with some (or even many) of the things that Lin says, but you do not know her motivations as you seem to think you do. If any axes are being ground by anyone, let it be that iron may sharpen iron.
Justa Believer

Tim G said...

Once again you miss the point. I am not asking for a document. I am asking why not publish the entire documents of the case? Why leave some out?

Not sure why you want this to go in another direction? My question is a question of why certain things are being left out for the masses. Can I not ask this question? Maybe there is a reason you do not wish to answer that? I am not sure but...

Anonymous said...

Tim G,

Nothing is being left out for the masses. All the filed documents are already public. That means that anyone who wants to can freely access them.

Publishing all the documents from the case would be extremely laborious. There's no way I would do all that scanning myself, nor would I expect anyone else to do it. The full case file is thousands of pages long.

The purpose of a blog is to provide the most relevant information about the subjects that the author chooses to address. Blogs are not intended to provide exhaustive information, regardless of relevance.

Outpost has done us all a great service to publish as many of the documents as they have. It's not as if anyone is preventing you from knowing the truth. You can access all the filed documents yourself, just as Outpost has done. If you don't trust Outpost to make appropriate decisions about which documents are the most relevant, then perhaps you should retrace their steps and look up all the documents for yourself. But to expect them to take the time to upload literally thousands of pages of information that is already public is ludicrous.

Anonymous said...

Comment # 118

Tim Rogers Says:
March 17th, 2008 at 11:26 am
Brother Jim Champion,
MBC is not the issue here. However, trying not to divert the comments too far away, let me take a moment to answer your question.

"" No Christian should be involved in taking another Christian to court.""

We in NC have every right to take the Schools, Baptist Retirement Homes and WMU to court and fight it out suing them for everything we can get our hands on. If that were to happen and we win multi-million $ settlements I would vote to give every cent back to the entities. However, that is not the case. We have agreed to let God be the final judge.
As to Mo. they have to make that decision, because I do not have a vote. They are an autonomous entity and decide for themselves. It is up to the churches in their state to determine what their scriptural stand would be.


Anonymous said...

It's a technicality whether she resigned or was fired. (one that will be made much of, to be sure, but a technicality, nevertheless) Either way, she was forced out.

And what was done to her was WRONG!
It may even have been legal, (though I don't think so, but the court will decide). Many things that are wrong are legal, as we see all the time when people are mistreated by bad laws or loopholes hidden in otherwise good laws.

But legal or not, it was unchristian. Now we all know that institutions that call themselves Christian (just like people who call themselves Christian) do not always act in a Christian manner. But we should expect better! Not only for the sake of those mistreated but for the witness of the Gospel.

How does it look, especially for those who are supposed to be teaching people (ok, in this case, men) to be Christian leaders, when they mistreat people? I would wonder what those future leaders were being taught.

Oh, well, I'm just a woman, so in their view my opinions don't count. Do they even think I have a soul? I sometimes wonder.


Lin said...

"Lin is kind of like the litmus strip in those experiments Coach used to show us in high school."

This sorta sounds like a compliment even though I have no clue what it means. :o)

Football? Baseball?

But, I will take it. Thanks. :o)

Anonymous said...

Paige Patterson’s Legacy after all these years.

Tim G said...

Keep trying, you are getting close with each comment you post. Come on now, you are getting there! :)

Chris Johnson said...

Brother Don Smith,

I like how you have outlined your post. You force context….You have inserted the real argument at this point. I’m not sure that a resolution will ever see the light of day in this sad situation, whether the worldly judge finds in favor of Dr. Klouda or Dr. Patterson. At this point the church is not willing to resolve its immaturity, so even if a verdict is rendered in the earthly courts this situation will continue beyond an earthly judgment as far as God has told us in His Corinthian letter, because the worldly courts are not bound by the same power as the heavenly. (Matthew 18)

Dr. Klouda and/or Dr. Patterson it appears do not have the slightest interest to pursue “unity” with each other. Notice I did not say that maybe one of them has tried, or is willing. All the crowds watching the event want justice! But, only if it is fair to their candidate. All involved have their own agenda’s.

God has one agenda for these two children of His (Klouda and Patterson). That is that they love one another, pursue unity, because….. “1 Corinthians 1:9-11 God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. (10) Now I exhort you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all agree and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be made complete in the same mind and in the same judgment. (11) For I have been informed concerning you, my brethren, by Chloe's people, that there are quarrels among you.

Paul’s context to this immature group of Corinthians is not about finding the lowest or highest common denominator for when you are allowed to take a brother to court. Paul is arguing for another solution to this bunch of immature babes in Christ. As you have stated very well Don, these Corinthians are so immature that they are taking people to court for just about anything (we call them ambulance chasers) looking for profit.

Now,…. I am no Apostle, but if I can help bring unity to a brother and sister in Christ I will try,….. because that is the will of God. And furthermore, for the church to be obedient to the will of God in this matter, does not mean that both parties shake hands and pretend to like each other. There will be pain in the solution. Both will be held accountable, spiritually and monetarily. There will be pride swallowed on both sides….which is a great thing in the eyes of the Lord. But, greatest of all, God is Glorified because His church is obedient.


Anonymous said...

Dr. Patterson has simply goofed big time. In today's legal world, persons are protected from being abused by willy nilly managers and administrators.

The court does not care what personnel policies SWBTS has approved based on the Bible or any other source. The key is that they must be official policy of the institution before an administrator can exercise them. An administrator cannot make up policy as he goes along. That can be abusive.

Since SWBTS has written personnel policies, the policy that says women cannot teach in the School of Theology must be among those policies, as approved by the trustees in official action. This position is not a minor application of an existing policy. It disqualifies an entire gender from holding certain positions. As such, it had better be decided in the most formal of ways.

Saying that "several trustees said" does not make a position into policy. The trustees must formally vote on that policy. Normally, it must then be published so that all employees and future employees are aware that it exists.

There seems to be no evidence that proper procedure has been followed in this case. Patterson's views about women are not the policies of the institution. He does not have the authority of the SWBTS to back his decision.

He goofed and he is liable.


Anonymous said...

Tim G,

I'm sorry for refusing to head down your irrelevant rabbit trails. Nice try!

Anonymous said...

Another thing,

Since we have not heard that the trustees have since approved a formal policy that women cannot teach in the School of Theology, is that indicative that Dr. P. does not have the votes to get it passed?

One would think that he would want that after-the-fact show of support if he could get it.


Pamela said...

Benji Ramsaur stated:

If she was single and trumpeting women's rights, then that would be one thing.

But for her to have to take care of her sick husband, yea, even having to give her own blood to take care of him is a whole different matter.

I'm not sure what was meant by this comment. It sounds like if she had been single and/or with no other financial sources it would not have been as bad of a situation. A single woman that has bills to pay is just as important to the Lord as a married one with a sick husband. Even if being forced out did not cause a financial hardship it is still wrong according to God's standards. I am single and utterly reject that I'm less important to the Lord or that it would have been less of an issue if she was single with no one depending on her finances for support. Unfortunately it appears that much of the body of Christ looks at single women as second class citizens. I have seen the association of being single and promoting feminazi ideals more than once reading this blog for almost the entire time it has been in existence.

What was done to her was wrong regardless of her marital or financial status. Single women do not automatically trumpet women's rights (whatever is meant by that). It almost sounds like women cannot express anything that affirms them without being accused of being feminazis.

Anonymous said...


A person [whether they be male or female] who has been forced out of their job "and" has to financially take care of another person [whether they be male of female] is in a worse situation than a single female [or single male] who has been forced out of a job and does not have to financially take care of someone else in my opinion.



Pamela said...

Mentioning 'single and trumpeting women's rights' made it sound like single women were less than married women. The implication being that single women are single because they protest what many Christians define as traditional family (married with children). If 'trumpeting women's rights' had not been mentioned I would not have responded at all. I would have understood that the issue was being a breadwinner for an entire family.

I grow weary with people linking single women with being feminazis and against traditional family. Why do people in the SBC make that link? I have seen it more than once on this blog. This is the only time I have responded. For this discussion it never should have been brought up.

Thanks for the clarification.

Lin said...

Pamela, Take heart that I see you as being in good company with women such as Mary M and Lottie Moon. Blessings.

Anonymous said...


Bringing up singleness only had to do with not having to financially take care of one's spouse, not in any way devaluing single women.

Bringing up trumpeting women's rights had to do with having a social agenda of which, I think, at the least, "can" be self-absorbing.

When you have to give blood in order to take care of your spouse, then I don't think you have much time to dedicate yourself to any social agenda even if you wanted to.



Pamela said...

Benji, I was probably picky when the conjunction 'and' was used. I have been in many churches where women, especially single women, were the cause of all of men's problems. This is probably why I jumped to the conclusion I did. Thanks for explaning your point of reference.