With Christmas nearly at the door lot’s of us telephone each other. I didn’t receive any of the pre-Christmas visionforum emails but they were forwarded to me. I’ve read Phillips doesn’t celebrate Christmas. For a man who doesn’t celebrate this wonderful holiday he sure makes a living at promoting it! What a phony. On a related “front” there are a number of folk telling Mark Epstein he needs to take his blog down because Phillips feels defensive. Oooooooohhhh, poor baby. What a joke. Phillips is as OFFENSIVE as anyone can be. Guess he only wants life to work one way. Welcome to your “reality check” Duggy. Mark assured me this morning his blog stays. Good show chap! Don’t give Duggy Wuggy any quarter. Take no prisoners from the rabble at the Kool-Aid parlor in Waring. And don’t forget to flash bang the duggy-wannabes shilling for him before you give them some “300″ treatment. Mark. Don’t forget to wish your enemies a very Merry Christmas. ;-o
December 24, 2007
December 11, 2007
Note to CF: Your BT blog is okay, but you need to take down PS or your “soft answer” will be exposed for what it is…another DP “shill” lie. Don’t think M&J will appreciate knowing who you are. Just a word for the wise. Hope “wise” applies to you.
“…offering Doug and BCA any further apologies is analogous to those in Hell receiving ice water - it just isn’t going to happen!” Mark Epstein
Victory for the church triumphant! Mark Epstein will continue writing about Doug Phillips and his “actions.” Bravo! All will look forward to reading your next post. May God bless you!
Sic Semper Tyrannis!
December 10, 2007
Can it be? Have the Epsteins “wimped out” in their fight against ecclesiastical tyranny? Are they planning to allow the “girlie boys” at Tired of the C*** and Still Fed Up and the sissy Matt “Independent Investigator” Chancey to win one for the wimp? Or is it truly all about grace? (see Jen Epstein’s latest post and apology) Let’s hope not! The most “merciful” thing we could witness is the coup de grace quickly applied to Phillips’ empire-in-the-making.
Regardless of what the Epsteins do or do not do, this blogger will continue unabated.
For the last few weeks, I’ve been researching the Perez family. Yes, the same Mr. and Mrs. P. who defamed a man they don’t even know! Over the past few days I found the latest attack/hate the Epsteins blog to enter the fray to bear all the tell-tale signs of a specific authorship. Do the initials CF mean anything to anyone?
The “war” is not over Phillips. Show some humility or continue reaping what you’ve sown. These really are your only choices.
Todd aka “The Moderator”
August 30, 2007
Watching a bully get taken to the woodshed is one of the most enjoyable things a person can witness. Second only to that is to watch the unfolding of a tyrant’s demise - in this case, a tyrant that prides himself on defining the argument, but who is increasingly in a reaction mode. The evidence for this is what Nathanael noted about Doug Phillips’ four blog articles this week; articles that were Phillips’ most transparent attack on Jennifer Epstein since the sordid behavior on Phillips’ part began.
What’s really amusing is to see (once again) Kevin Swanson attempting to rescue Phillips from his detractors. Coming to Doug’s look-alike’s defense, Swanson does some very interesting mental gymnastics as he attempts to give Bill Gothard a pass. Although Kevin “Yellow-bellied Blogger” Swanson may be able to charm a few folks, this writer isn’t buying. Gothard and Phillips teach the same nonsense and they are both charismatic enough to delude many God-fearing Christians, which simply illustrates the “milk” American Christians still feed upon instead of eating theological “meat” (so they are prepared to give an apologia).
Besides Swanson’s attempt, Goeff Botkin weighed-in earlier this week with a pathetic example of running interference for Phillips. One really has to wonder why intelligent men follow the half-baked, wanna-be shepherd Phillips, when all Doug is is a poor excuse for an attorney (opinion) and an “in the red” businessman (ask Doug about Vision Forum’s pre-Epstein excommunication ink color). Hmmmm, Doug, according to the OT that you are hung-up on, your “red ink” is indicative of a less-than-godly-pleasure with you…at least so say the Pharisees and rabbis charged with interpreting The Law.
Although Jennifer Epstein takes the position that Phillips and his BCA congregants are not a “heretical cult,” there is disagreement on this point. Mark Epstein takes a much harder line and, along with Joe Taylor, actually question Phillips’ regeneration. Considering the entire body of “knowledge” surrounding Phillips’ activities as a so-called “shepherd” these past few years, I am inclined to disagree with Jennifer Epstein and far more inclined to agree with her husband and Mr. Taylor. You can judge this for yourself at Jen’s latest article titled “Is Doug Phillips a Cult Leader?”
For another perspective, you can read Mark Epstein’s article titled “Is Boerne Christian Assembly a Cult?” Regardless of which view one agrees with, there can be no argument that Phillips and his “leadership” (is this a joke?) are far outside the boundaries of orthodox Christianity they claim to represent and adhere to.
Lastly, let’s take a look at Doug’s own reaction. In all the months Mark and Jen Epstein blogged about Phillip’s ecclesiastical tyranny, there have only been two times Phillips became “visibly” shaken by what appeared in print. The first time was the email a number of homeschool organizations received and the second was the issue of being labeled a cult. In both situations, Phillips orchestrated a response laced with attacks and “shoot-the-messenger” tactics. Yes, once again we are witness to Doug and Company engaging in a very anti-biblical method of discrediting the messenger instead of addressing the issues raised by thoughtful Christians. If this isn’t a red flag to those who claim Christ as Lord and Savior, then I do not know what it will take to waken the slumbering idolaters among us.
August 29, 2007
There is quite a conversation occurring at Jen’s Gems regarding how Doug Phillips is in the “react” mode once again, and finds the need to indirectly attack Mrs. Epstein. Gee, Doug, did you forget your own axiom (”he who defines, wins”)?
What Phillips, his shills (the girlie men who authored Tired of the Crap and Still Fed Up), and his proxies (e.g., Geoff Botkin, Kevin Swanson, et. al.) don’t understand is that they can never prevail against the Epstein family within the extended church family or in the secular courts. What follows is “WHY” Phillips and his idolatrous cohorts will never see victory.
First, Phillips conducted an unbiblical excommunication. He denied the accused due process - period. Americans, whether saved or unsaved, understand the need for courts to act impartially. Phillips could not act impartially (no matter how far he distanced himself from the “dirty work”) because he crafted the entire contemptuous and despicable proceedings. Can anyone say “duplicitous”?
Secondly, Phillips chose to give RC Sproul Jr. a “pass” for his misbehavior, even though it far exceeded any allegations against the two Epsteins. Can anyone say “major hypocrite”?
Third, Phillips has ensured the idolaters at Boerne Christian Assembly shun the Epstein children, despite the very public writings claiming only the parents were in sin. Can anyone say “hate monger”?
Fourth, Phillips allows the legal scholarly-challenged Bob Renaud to write a treatise on a Texas Supreme Court decision that Renaud did not even (1) realize was not a precedent and (2) failed to realize the decision was a double-edged sword. (Note to Doug: Perhaps you should rethink your mentoring skills.)
Fifth, regardless of what is alleged about Mark Epstein speaking with anyone about his wife’s pre-conversion sin, the ethically and morally-challenged girlie men at TOTC and SFU are liable for what they wrote. There is no clergy privilege extended to them, which is why they lurk in the shadows and refuse to identify themselves. Furthermore, since Doug Phillips or one of his deacons relayed some details to the boys at TOTC/SFU, which were not known by the church membership at large, Phillips and/or his deacons are no longer insulated by clergy privilege, as indicated by the very same Texas Supreme Court decision that Renaud worshiped ad nauseum. Now does everyone understand why these punks won’t “man up”? It’s because Phillips has his carnitas on the line! Yes, legal discovery is a beautiful thing, and Phillips is a moral coward as much as he is a bully and ecclesiastical tyrant.
Sixth, Phillips has consistently attempted to intimidate the Epsteins (and others) with his legal gamesmanship. Unfortunately for Doug, there are a number of lawyers in this country with far superior legal skills who would be more than willing to take Doug on in the court room. For example, Phillips can make any allegation he wants concerning “tortious business interference,” but if Vision Forum was already in the “red” before the Epsteins began blogging, too bad, so sad, Phillips has no case. Yes, once again, discovery is a beautiful thing. Can anyone say “disbarment proceedings should be initiated”?
Seventh, the only people who have shown restraint are the Epsteins. This is evidenced in their writings that are dominated by a spirit of love for Phillips and the members of BCA, while we see the very opposite (hate) from all of those associated with the Phillips camp. The Epsteins also know who all the authors are at TOTC/SFU, and they have refrained from suing them and Phillips. Mark has also asked me not to reveal their identities, as I originally planned to do on Labor Day 2007.
Eighth, Phillips is now taking flak from other Christians about his unbiblical “tenets of patriarchy.” Contemporary orthodox members of the Reformed community view adding to, subtracting from, dividing, and multiplying as the basic lens through which we view and identify cults. Since Phillips’ tenets of patriarchy are unsupportable biblically, then we can only conclude that Phillips adds to the Holy Scriptures. Thus, if the cult shoe fits, Phillips needs to wear it.
Ninth, hiding behind others and their attacks on the Epsteins is the mark of a political operative, not a Christian shepherd. Phillips still must wear the moniker of “self-proclaimed” as it refers to his pastoring of BCA, and he still must wear the badge of shame associated with operating a dirty political smear campaign that targeted the Epsteins. Those who support Phillips ought to hang their heads in shame as well. Can anyone say “Phillips and the membes of BCA need to repent”?
Lastly, Phillips and his hate mongers will most likely never repent. Thus, we turn them over to God for His righteous vengeance on behalf of Mr. and Mrs. Epstein, their children, and the many others Phillips has trampled upon over the years. And, whether or not we see His judgment and punishment in this lifetime, we can all rest assured that Doug and Beall Phillips, Matt and Jennie Chancey, Geoff Botkin, Kevin Swanson, the girlie men at TOTC/SFU, Bob Renaud, the voting members of BCA, Bob Welch, Richard and Reba Short, the unnamed “supreme court justice,” Chris Ortiz, James MacDonald, certain elders at Faith Presbyterian Church, Little Bear Wheeler, the co-elders of Living Water Fellowship, Wesley Strackbein, Gavino and Ruth Perez, the “christian” attorneys involved with the Joe Taylor “mediation,” and others who will remain unnamed (at this point) will receive their due from an infinitely Holy and Just God.
Praise be to God!
Todd “The Moderator” Cates
August 4, 2007
Seems hyper-patriarch and ecclesiastical tyrant Doug Phillips is at it again. Besides what appears to be a direct cause of one of Mr. and Mrs. Epstein’s children being barred from a Wheeler Wedding, Phillips and his fellow cultists shamefully treated two guests attempting to visit Boerne Christian Assembly (the term “Christian” is used quite loosely in this case). Talk about an ego on steroids!
Meanwhile, over at Worldview Weekend, the folks there have posted a video that tells us Why American Churches are In Trouble.
In Florida, Dr. R.C. Sproul finally fired Tim Dick. Unfortunately, it’s probably a little to late to resuscitate Ligonier Ministries.
The writers for US Cav feature a story on their blog that originally appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer titled Finish the Job in Iraq.
June 30, 2007
As though life wasn’t bad enough for Phillips these days over at Jen’s Gems, Ultimate Truth, Ministry Watchman, and a bevy of other sites in the blogosphere, now the liberals are taking aim at him for his shenanigans in Virginia. It began with the local newspaper, escalated to an article at MSNBC/Newsweek, and now Salon.com is taking a shot at Phillips.
Quoting from Kathryn Joyce’s article below, we see how the media categorizes Phillips:
“Fifteen miles from Williamsburg, Va., in Charles City County, on a country road dominated by plantations turned bed-and-breakfasts, 4,000 ultra-conservative, largely home-schooling Christians gathered to correct a month-old mistake: to do Jamestown right. The women wore hoop skirts, bustles, bonnets and mob hats. The men wore tricorn, feathered ‘Musketeer’ or top hats; they carried swords. ‘Maidens,’ that is, girls, wore aprons, while ‘heroes’â€”boysâ€”donned armor or coonskin caps.”
Despite Phillips stated concern for historical accuracy, it would seem his minions are not that concerned at all. Top Hats in 1607? I think Phillips’ folks might be a little period-challenged to say the least. But that is not their biggest problem. The largest challenge facing Doug’s followers is their inability to think as Bereans. For if they were able to critically evaluate Phillips, they would come to the same conclusion we see in the three-part series and comments that begin at the thread here.
In addition to this fundamental problem with the Vision Forum crowd, it seems no one is asking why Phillips is now sucking-up to Ken Ham and Mr. Klicka over at the Home School Legal Defense Association. Could it be that Doug is taking a beating at Dino Deception and that he is afraid of a potential backlash should his real relationship with HSLDA become public knowledge? We can only speculate at this point.
On the other hand, there is clearly no speculation as to what the liberals think of Phillips. With the publication of the Salon.com piece, we also find the following picture taken from Doug’s own website. Again, it is obvious the left side of the political spectrum is not very fond of the Phillips family because they continue to raise the specter of Howard Phillips, one of Nixon’s boys.
Congratulating Joyce on a fine article, Salon’s short piece quickly mentions Howard and the award Phillips bestowed on Ken Ham. If Ken knew any of the real details behind Phillips’ treatment of Joe Taylor and Phillips’ relationship with the DeRosa family, I am sure Ken would have preferred the Badge of Honor Mr. and Mrs. Epstein share from their days at Boerne Christian Assembly - namely the label of “Excommunicated by Kool-Aid Drinkers.”
June 22, 2007
Without a doubt, Doug Phillips has gone out of his way to keep his name off official documents posted by Boerne “christian-cult” Assembly, the Chalcedon website, and the hate blogs Still Fed Up, Tired of the Crap, Mrs. Bino, etc. However, Phillips’ failure to rein-in the writers at SFU, TotC, Mrs. Bino, etc., as well as his position of sole-elder at Bc-cA and Der Fuhrer at Vision Forum make him more than responsible for the behavior of his associates, it make Phillips complicit! Therefore, without a doubt, Phillips is responsible for the ongoing slandering and defaming of the Epsteins - period. As noted by Spunky in a comment on Mrs. Epstein’s blog, even Phillips’ friends, associates, and employees make the case against Phillips.
Here is what Spunky (a Phillips’ supporter) wrote:
“Chris Ortiz said,
As to the personal allegations, the evidence is circumstantial. Phillips denies these accusations, but he has not sought to publicly defame the Epsteins. He’s also not written a response to every detail of Jennifer’s account. I think this is wise. Since Doug is the face of Vision Forum, and the Epsteins intend to tarnish both, Doug must respond to this as any sizable organization would do with official statements.”
I would like to know on what basis Mr. Ortiz can make the claim that Doug Phillips has not sought to publicly defame the Epsteins? Could Mr. Ortiz tell us who wrote Still Fed Up and Tired of The Crap or the Boerne Christian website? Until I know the answer to that question, it is not clear to me that Doug Phillips has not participated in the efforts to defame the Epsteins.
I do agree that Doug Phillips must respond with official statements, however he is not absolved of the biblical requirement as an elder to be above reproach in his official response. That is why I have been watching the response of BCA, Vision Forum, and Doug Phillips so closely. What they do, demonstrates what they truly believe. Currently, the ‘official statements’ coming from Vision Forum and BCA are in my opinion not above reproach. Here’s why,
It is not above reproach and inconsistent to condemn ‘tale-bearers’ on the Vision Forum website and then at the same time allow an anonymous ’supreme court justice’ to accuse another believer of wrongdoing without documentation.
Alexander Strauch puts it so well on the Vision Forum website in his article The Plague of Talebearing, ‘Everyone has a burr under the saddle about something, and mine is people passing information about another without the facts. I get so fed up with it.’
Wesley Strackbeins words are even stronger. He said, ‘unbiblical behavior in the form of spreading false witness, bringing public charges without even contacting brothers in Christ in advance, publishing gossip and revilings, etc. all contrary to the Word of God.’
Without the name of the Supreme Court Justice nor do we know if Doug Phillips contacted Dave Linton before bringing public charges therefore the information is unbiblical spreading of of rumors by an anonymous false witness and in the words of Wesley Strackbein ‘contrary to the Word of God.’
If Mr. Ortiz truly believes this is a church matter, then it is not above reproach for Vision Forum to use it’s company or ministry website, which in part is funded by donations from supporters to publicly talk about a Boerne Church Assembly issues. We should be hearing only from the elders of Boerne on a their website.
It is not above reproach for an elder and Christian leader to allow BCA to have a website with no known authors which publicly defend or present the case for BCA or Doug Phillips. A church website with no email, address, names, or contact information, is not above reproach. If I wouldn’t buy anything from a company without such information provided, I most assuredly won’t accept their information without knowing that someone had the courage to accept responsibility for the things that are written on the site. Without knowing who is writing the information, it cannot be considered as anything more than the public spreading of gossip by a false witness.
It is not above reproach for an elder and leader in a church to host an anonymous church website and post fragmented and incomplete documents to make their claims. And then tell the general public if they want the documents, they must email Vision Forum after first warning about gossip. The information as it currently is presented by Vision Forum IS gossip. It is unsubstantiated rumor, verifiable only if you email and can prove you are worthy to receive the information. Either tell it all, or none at all.
Further, it is not above reproach for whoever wrote the BCA website to modify documents and not provide the originals for verification. Several times when quoting Faith PCA’s letter they bracket letters. That tells me that the sentence was incomplete. Such an action can alter the meaning of a sentence and the original intent of the author. Without source documentation we don’t know for certain if that is the case, thus it is not above reproach.
An elder who seeks to remain above reproach must publicly condemn anonymous sites such as Still Fed Up and if they know, reveal the identities of those who participate in such activities. Failure to do so, could lead people to believe that the elders are encouraging, supporting, or even participating in the unbiblical behavior and guilty of the same ‘internetâ€ assassinations’ they accuse the Epsteins of doing.
These are just some of the areas where I have seen the ‘official statements’ of Doug Phillips come short of the standard of being above reproach.
I should note that an early attempt to clarify some of my initial concerns was graciously responded to by Mr. Gobart but further dialogue was unfortunately shut down.
Mr. Ortiz also said, ‘Folks, this is a private conflict that one party has decided to make public.’
It is erroneous to claim that it was the Epsteins who made this ‘public.’ Excommunication is by definition a public act done to shame the excommunicant into repentance.
In the Disciplinary Action of Mark and Jen Epstein on the first page there is a section entitled, The History Behind This Disciplinary Action; Point A is entitled ‘Going Public.’ They then give four reasons why this ’sin-crisis’ must become a public issue. (See Jen’s sidebar for the link)
The date this went public is 1/23/2005 and it was done by Boerne Christian Assembly. And then further enlarged in their congregational vote to excommunicate documented in the 2/6/2005 letter to the Epsteins.
Mr. Ortiz, the Epsteins may have malicious motives in going to the internet, for which they will be held accountable. But it is totally impossible [to] keep an excommunication a private church matter. Doug Phillips or Boerne may not like the fact that they Epsteins enlarged the scope of the public or church beyond the local area, but the one who went public was not the Epsteins but Boerne Christian Assembly.
For Chris Ortiz or anyone else to claim otherwise is misrepresenting the nature of excommunication itself and its purpose in publicay shaming the excommunicant into repentance.
As I have said many times to my own children, truth will withstand the toughest scrutiny. Those who have nothing to fear should not fear a public scrutiny no matter how large in scope or how who is blogging about it. The Truth always prevails.
Further, The letter of excommunication to the Epsteins stated, ‘The church no longer has jurisdiction over you or your minor children.’
That obviously includes their actions AFTER the excommunication. Why are they continuing to rebuke a ‘heathen’ that they declare they no longer have any jurisdiction over? It is a fools errand! If they didn’t have success BEFORE they excommunicated them, why would they think they would have any greater success now that they have no jurisdiction over them?
So once BCA chose to go public with the ’sin-crisis’ where the information went was no longer under jurisdiction either.
It is unfortunate that this situation has persisted for as long as it has. But did Doug Phillips or anyone at BCA expect that a woman who they accused of waging a ‘campaign of division’ at BCA to act any differently once the ’sin-crisis’ was made public by BCA and she was excommunicated?
The responsibility as elders and congregants at BCA now is to live in accordance with their excommunication and treat the Epsteins as heathen and a publican. They don’t need to fear the ‘railings of a heathen.’ God will hold her accountable.
However, Doug Phillips could end all this today, by releasing the minutes from the trial of excommunication. It is then easy to verify if indeed the Epsteins are telling the truth or lying. As Mr. Strauch so eloquently said, ‘No judgment without the facts.’ Until the elders at BCA are willing to publicly defend their excommunication with the facts, this saga will continue.
However, the responsibility of those who have supported the ministry of Vision Forum is to determine if the manner in which Doug Phillips and the elders of BCA acted in the excommunication process and afterward is above reproach. Therefore, any attempt to refute the attacks or ‘vile schemes’ of the Epsteins must be done in accordance with proper biblical order and be above reproach, lest Doug Phillips or the elders fall into the very temptations for which they excommunicated the Epsteins.
Galatians 6:1 says. “Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted.”
That is why I continue to place greater weight and emphasis on the statements of Doug Phillips and Vision Forum and less on a ‘heathen’ who I wouldn’t or shouldn’t expect to act in a manner contrary to the reasons for which they were excommunicated.
Jen’s actions (both right and wrong) only serve to help me discern whether Doug Phillips is acting in a manner worthy of his calling as elder of BCA and leader in the Christian homeschool community. I have not made a determination on that yet. Since the story is still unfolding and for now Doug Phillips is choosing to allow others to speak on his behalf.
My only reason for following this situation is that I have been a supporter personally and on my blog of Vision Forum and Doug Phillips. I want to make sure that the ministries we support are above reproach and credible. It is with that heart in mind, that we will continue to watch what the events unfold. How he handles this trial demonstrates his character and his faith in a much better way than any teaching he gives. I find the teachings at times inspirational and helpful, but I also want to know that the man I listen to walks in integrity. As I have said previously, I have not made a final determination on that matter, for now we do not accept the story that either side has told as the complete truth.
It is my earnest prayer that all who profess the name of Christ are humble and willing to admit where they may have failed in applying God’s Word in their life. That is why public forums such as blogs are so helpful, our words can be examined and errors quickly corrected. So while some get upset at the blogging of this dispute, it is the very public nature of the internet that will hopefully bring about the complete repentance our Lord desires and for His glory alone. And if we believe that our Lord is indeed sovereign, then the internet is exactly the avenue HE chose for it all to take place.”
Well said, Spunky.
June 11, 2007
There is a very talented lady in the blog world who ceased supporting Gary DeMar and American Vision because of its close association with Doug Phillips.
The following is Cindy Kunsman’s letter to Gary DeMar and Brandon Vallorani concerning the issue of Mr. Phillips:
Date: Wed, 30 May 2007 20:49:27 -0700 (PDT)
From: “Cynthia Kunsman”
Subject: To Gary Demar and Brandon Vallorani RE: Doug Phillips and cultic behavior
CC: “jlepstein” “ForTox Consulting” “Andrew Sandlin”
At the fundraiser you held in Detroit in Spring 2006, Brandon asked me if I could provide any substantive evidence to defend my strong opinion that Doug Phillips’ church in Boerne, TX was undoubtedly a cult. I also faced the same criticism when I spoke to a board member a few weeks ago in response to a fundraising call. It was immediately followed by my email to Gary (on behalf of my husband, Gary) when I also informed you that we chose to no longer support American Vision because of Doug’s increasing presence at events, etc. (Sorry that Gary,my dh, missed your call, Gary DeMar, but perhaps it may not be as necessary now, in light of this. We appreciate your effort to contact us.)
We started to prepare a formal letter to you to explain more thoroughly our concerns for withdrawal of support, and I looked on line at Vision Forum’s site to make sure that I had my facts straight so as not to unfairly misrepresent information about Doug. Upon looking on a search engine, I discovered this site (detailing the experiences of an excommunicated member whom Doug has stated that he wants to sue), and today they have posted the following @
I would appreciate it if someone could also forward this to the board member that I spoke with who assisted Brandon with phone fundraising calls last month. I mentioned these concerns at some length with him. I encourage you to also explore the website entitled “Jen’s Gems: Exposing Doug Phillips’ Ecclesiastical Tyranny” @ http://jensgems.wordpress.com/about/
Cynthia Mullen Kunsman, RN, BSN, MMin, ND, CHt
“It is one thing to show a man that he is in error,
and another to put him in possession of the truth.”
You can read the entire post here.Â