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Thread: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

  1. #81
    Senior Member Rich Schmidt's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shea Zellweger View Post
    here's as much of it as I could find: https://docs.google.com/document/edi...B3ZOdHlA&hl=en
    I have the whole thing in my inbox, if you want the rest. (I'm assuming that's your Google Doc you linked to.)

    I'm subscribed to Manny's blog, so whenever there's a new post, I get it in my email. Honestly, I haven't bothered to read the whole thing yet. I saw where it was headed and started skimming.

    And, once again, I'm grateful for my own DS.
    Thanks Shea Zellweger - "thanks" for this post

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    Senior Member Rich Schmidt's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis Bratcher View Post
    Orville Jenkins, Jr. is a good example of that. He has written such letters and attacked college professors based on his own personal opinions. For one example of the result of his letter writing campaigns, see Did Jesus Have to Die?. (This can be documented.)
    What's the connection between that article and Orville Jenkins, Jr.? I'm not seeing it.
    Thanks Bill Morrison, Susan Unger, Larry Parsons - "thanks" for this post

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    Senior Member Rich Schmidt's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul DeBaufer View Post
    Jenkins two letters can be found at:


    http://www.ashworthavenueneighbors.com/aprilletter.html

    http://www.ashworthavenueneighbors.com/julyletter.html

    Most of this thread is concerned with the July letter, but it references the April letter. Both are quite long.
    When I first clicked the links, the website wasn't responding. Now it's responding, and I have both letters. Thanks, Paul.

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    [
    Quote Originally Posted by Rich Schmidt View Post
    What's the connection between that article and Orville Jenkins, Jr.? I'm not seeing it.
    Thanks for asking.

    As I posted in a follow up, we restored the original article to the CRI/Voice site last weekend. When the article was first posted, shortly after Dr. Tashjian had responded in a similar way to a question in Holiness Today, Orville Jenkins, Jr., wrote a strong letter of complaint to the SNU college president (note that Rev. Jenkins is not on the SNU educational zone). After talking to Dr. Tashjian and consulting members of our board, to avoid possible recriminations (of which there is a history at SNU dating back at least to 1960s) and to calm the waters we decided to pull the article.

    Dr. Tashjian also presented an expanded version of that article at a Wesleyan Theological Society meeting (The Death of Jesus: Historically Contingent or Divinely Ordained?). That has remained online the entire time and has received almost no complaint except from predestinarian Southern Baptists.

    One of the crucial factors in such situations (and those to which I referred earlier) that tends to get ignored is the qualifications of those who are speaking. Dr. Tashjian has spent most of his ministry in education, including teaching and supervising a school in Jordan. He has pastored, spent eight years as a missionary in Taiwan, and earned a PhD in New Testament studies from a top level school. He is an expert in New Testament Greek, specializes in Jesus studies, and has authored articles and commentaries on the Gospels. That does not make him right. But it gives him some authority to speak from an informed position without being subjected to attacks from a DS with, I suspect, far less qualifications to speak on the topic (the same can be said for J. K. Warrick's attack on Dr. Tashjian and SNU for the same response in HT).

    I recall Randy Maddox' comment about preferring to defend his head rather than his heart (as a reason for becoming UMC). Somewhere we need to learn the implications of that statement in the context of a community of Faith. Otherwise there is no community at all, but just individuals fighting for control of a small puddle.
    Matt 12:25 . . . Every kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and no city or house divided against itself will stand."
    Grace and Peace,

    Dennis B.

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    Host Gen. Disc. Forum David Pettigrew's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shea Zellweger View Post
    your final line in the post was "If we did this, we wouldn't have time to be drawn into arguments over the "correct" way to talk to God." As I read that, I got the impression that you were saying that if we were out ministering as we should be, we wouldn't be discussing/debating/going to war over theology. Basically, I was saying that I agree with you about the need for refocusing, I just don't think it would bring about the result described in the sentence I quoted above... at least not as I read it.
    Well, it takes two to argue (unless you talk back to the voices in your head). What if we just didn't fight back?
    Thanks Shea Zellweger, Paul DeBaufer - "thanks" for this post

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Pettigrew View Post
    Well, it takes two to argue (unless you talk back to the voices in your head). What if we just didn't fight back?
    I don't think this is an argument. It's not a playground fight over toys.

    I addressed (actually repeated) what I think is at stake in this post another thread.

    Grace and Peace,

    Dennis B.
    Thanks Billy Cox, Shea Zellweger, Paul DeBaufer, Todd Erickson - "thanks" for this post

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    Host Sports forum Shea Zellweger's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Pettigrew View Post
    Well, it takes two to argue (unless you talk back to the voices in your head). What if we just didn't fight back?
    There's a right way and a wrong way to fight back, but I don't think the right way is to say/do nothing. If I believe fundamentalists are gravely mistaken, and their behaviors/actions/theology are not in line with the Church of the Nazarene, but I (and you, and others...) choose not to respond, those who are pushing it on our denomination will continue to do so, and without a response of any kind, others will be taken in. If I/we do not engage them directly, we'll be attacked and ridiculed for being sneaky and undermining. It appears to me that direct engagement is really the only way to respond.
    Thanks Andy Mistak, Paul DeBaufer, Todd Erickson, David Graham - "thanks" for this post

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    Host Gen. Disc. Forum David Pettigrew's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shea Zellweger View Post
    There's a right way and a wrong way to fight back, but I don't think the right way is to say/do nothing. If I believe fundamentalists are gravely mistaken, and their behaviors/actions/theology are not in line with the Church of the Nazarene, but I (and you, and others...) choose not to respond, those who are pushing it on our denomination will continue to do so, and without a response of any kind, others will be taken in. If I/we do not engage them directly, we'll be attacked and ridiculed for being sneaky and undermining. It appears to me that direct engagement is really the only way to respond.
    I'll have to think about this. Part of me feels like if we're going about the mission, there's no need to engage with enemies unless confronted directly. As for those who might only get one side of the story, well, God loves them more than even we do.

    The other part of me sees those whose professions are at stake suffering attack, and wants to do everything I can to combat that.

    I have no control over whether the average laymen might or might not get to hear my "side" as opposed to something they read on the internet, so I'm unconcerned with this. For me, the only reason to engage in this discussion is for purposes of edification (like here on naznet) and standing up for those facing attack. Responding to this denominational official's email does not fall under those categories to me, as nothing I say would persuade him to think otherwise, and as far as I know he's not going after anyone's job (in this instance.) I have written letters in the past on behalf of colleagues whose jobs were on the line.

    I guess I'm saying that responding to the blogs, etc is a waste of time when we could be sowing in the good ground. It also drains our energies for the important battles.

    But I am willing to consider the possibility that I am wrong and you are right.

  9. #89
    Senior Member Charlotte 'Mercer' Burton's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shea Zellweger View Post
    There's a right way and a wrong way to fight back, but I don't think the right way is to say/do nothing. If I believe fundamentalists are gravely mistaken, and their behaviors/actions/theology are not in line with the Church of the Nazarene, but I (and you, and others...) choose not to respond, those who are pushing it on our denomination will continue to do so, and without a response of any kind, others will be taken in. If I/we do not engage them directly, we'll be attacked and ridiculed for being sneaky and undermining. It appears to me that direct engagement is really the only way to respond.
    I have to respectfully disagree here, Shea. Let me clarify that my natural response would be the same as yours seems to be here: direct confrontation over edging around an issue or pretending it isn't there. The problem is, in my own experience and in observing my father trying the same method for most of my life, I have found that this response makes me feel better far more often than it proves relationally beneficial. I agree that we do not want to merely lay down and play dead, and I agree that we do not want to be - or even appear to be - sneaky and undermining, but I do not believe that the only alternative is a direct confrontation, nor do I believe that a direct confrontation would do a whole lot of good past allowing us to get our hurt off of our chests.

    While the person/group of people in question may not have written anything about me thus far, they have written unkindly about people I love and about positions I hold to be true. However, while I know how much those unkind words may hurt my friends, I also know that my friends are not defined nor controlled by those words, but by God's love. I have seen this to be true time and time again. In addition to this, if I've been taught anything by my friends and my father's friends here on NazNet, it's that everyone, bar none, seeks to be loved and valued. While I may not agree with how well some people are acting this search out in practice, I will not deny that it is there. It seems to me, then, that the question is not "how do we deal with these people who believe and behave differently than us," but rather "how do we love them in a way that seems like love both to us and to them?" I won't pretend to have a good answer to this question, but I think it is best if we frame the question in that way, lest we forget what our goal here is and face yet another split in the church.

    If what we, as Nazarenes (Concerned or Emergent seems irrelevant here), are doing is bringing about hurt, disunity, and an us-them attitude, then it simply is not love, and therefore I must conclude that it is not like Christ. If our conversations with others within the Church of the Nazarene bring about so much hurt and anger, then how are we to speak with, or heaven forbid for the Church universal? How can we show Christ to those who don't know Him if we can't even agree on how to show Christ to each other?
    "God is still God, and love is still enough." ~Brad Mercer
    יִהְיֶה יהוה עוֹד יהוה וְהִשְׁלִים עוֹד חֶסֶד

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    Host Sports forum Shea Zellweger's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlotte 'Mercer' Burton View Post
    I have to respectfully disagree here, Shea. Let me clarify that my natural response would be the same as yours seems to be here: direct confrontation over edging around an issue or pretending it isn't there. The problem is, in my own experience and in observing my father trying the same method for most of my life, I have found that this response makes me feel better far more often than it proves relationally beneficial. I agree that we do not want to merely lay down and play dead, and I agree that we do not want to be - or even appear to be - sneaky and undermining, but I do not believe that the only alternative is a direct confrontation, nor do I believe that a direct confrontation would do a whole lot of good past allowing us to get our hurt off of our chests.

    While the person/group of people in question may not have written anything about me thus far, they have written unkindly about people I love and about positions I hold to be true. However, while I know how much those unkind words may hurt my friends, I also know that my friends are not defined nor controlled by those words, but by God's love. I have seen this to be true time and time again. In addition to this, if I've been taught anything by my friends and my father's friends here on NazNet, it's that everyone, bar none, seeks to be loved and valued. While I may not agree with how well some people are acting this search out in practice, I will not deny that it is there. It seems to me, then, that the question is not "how do we deal with these people who believe and behave differently than us," but rather "how do we love them in a way that seems like love both to us and to them?" I won't pretend to have a good answer to this question, but I think it is best if we frame the question in that way, lest we forget what our goal here is and face yet another split in the church.

    If what we, as Nazarenes (Concerned or Emergent seems irrelevant here), are doing is bringing about hurt, disunity, and an us-them attitude, then it simply is not love, and therefore I must conclude that it is not like Christ. If our conversations with others within the Church of the Nazarene bring about so much hurt and anger, then how are we to speak with, or heaven forbid for the Church universal? How can we show Christ to those who don't know Him if we can't even agree on how to show Christ to each other?
    Based on your and Dave's responses here, I think I should clarify some:
    I'm not saying I will be going after Orville Jenkins directly in this instance. He did not write the letter to me or to those in my charge, nor did he mention me anywhere in the text of either letter. I don't see anything that says he'll be seeking to get people removed from schools and churches in this instance. This specific email is Dr. Jenkins expressing an opinion, and it's his right to hold that opinion.

    Where I think direct interaction (perhaps "confrontation" is not the best word here) is necessary is when we are being called into direct conflict. This could be a one-on-one thing, such as those of us who are pastors having our positions challenged on theological grounds. It could be larger scale, such as last summer when there was a resolution on the table to make our article of faith on Scripture a more fundamentalist one. It could be something brought on by the new media- let's face it, there have been times where one of the top 10 page results on google/bing/etc. when searching for my name was about how heretical I am, and the other 9 were articles about my great uncle. This is a public address, and merits a public response. Do I need to go and hunt down everwhere that a person says something negative about "Emergents"? My goodness no! But if someone's seeking to specifically undermine my ministry, or the values of our churches or universities, then not addressing it in some way does a disservice to those who are being influenced or impacted by the attacks that are happening regularly.
    Thanks Rich Schmidt, Paul DeBaufer, Todd Erickson - "thanks" for this post

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by David Pettigrew View Post
    You know why the church is booming in India, China, Africa, and South America? Because the people are mostly poor, powerless, and uneducated - those whom Jesus especially loves. You know why the church is declining in North America? Because we mostly ignore the poor, powerless, and uneducated. We may give them a handout, but we sure don't often make them our "ministry target group" (this is generally reserved for young professionals w/elementary aged children) or elect them to our boards.
    David,

    Did you really mean to say that Jesus "especially" loves one group of people more than another? If so, do you have a scriptural argument to back that statement up and if so, could you share it with me?

  12. #92
    Senior Member Steve Reece's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hans Deventer View Post
    Kevin, you didn't really think that there were only a couple of people like Manny and friends doing this? Of course they have roots in the CotN! Way too many never understood what our church is about, and confused Enlightenment thinking with sound Wesleyan theology. I wouldn't even be surprised if there are (former) GS's who think like that. So to me it's all the same.
    About this, you are right.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hans Deventer View Post
    And the conversation is useless.
    About this you are wrong.

    I was pretty fundamentalist in the 90s. Had I not been in conversation with people more graceful than I, I would today likely find myself right at home with the destructive behavior and doctrine being talked about here. Hans, you were part of that conversation, as was Barbara, Dennis (in person at NTS, what I pain I was early on in his class), and others here on NazNet, CRIVoice, and at NTS for the short time I attended.

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    Senior Member Rich Schmidt's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Reece View Post
    I was pretty fundamentalist in the 90s. Had I not been in conversation with people more graceful than I, I would today likely find myself right at home with the destructive behavior and doctrine being talked about here. Hans, you were part of that conversation, as was Barbara, Dennis (in person at NTS, what I pain I was early on in his class), and others here on NazNet, CRIVoice, and at NTS for the short time I attended.
    That's the same reason that I continue to try to have constructive conversations with Manny and others on his blog. Because my story is much the same. I thank God for those (particularly at ONU, then also at NTS) who were gracious with me as I was learning more about the Bible, Christian history, theology, etc. -- learning those things that provide the much-needed context for better understanding what the Bible says, what we believe, where we fit in the broader Christian family, etc.

    I also thank God that the web, blogging, Facebook, etc., wasn't around during that period in my life. I shudder to think what I might have shouted from the electronic rooftops...

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    Host Sports forum Shea Zellweger's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by John Dahl View Post
    David,

    Did you really mean to say that Jesus "especially" loves one group of people more than another? If so, do you have a scriptural argument to back that statement up and if so, could you share it with me?
    Would you prefer "special concern" for the poor? The Gospel does seem to show preference to the poor. Jesus in the synagogue said "The spirit of the lord is upon me to... preach good news to the poor," while in regard to the rich young ruler he said "it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God." In the beatitudes of Luke, we read "blessed are you who are poor," yet "woe to you who are rich." In Luke 12, Jesus instructs the disciples to sell their possessions and give the money to the poor. Luke 14 shows us Jesus instructing his host to not invite rich people to his banquets, but the poor, the cripple, etc. The only verses in all of the Gospels where Jesus speaks about the poor and does not show them special favor is the same quote- "you will always have the poor with you," and the context of the verse is a woman lavishing rich gifts upon Jesus. Since he told his disciples that "whatever you do for the least of these, you do for me," and he is no longer with us, even that lavishing of rich gifts upon Jesus now just brings us right back to the poor.

    Loves them more? Perhaps not. But I don't think there's any way around the fact that Jesus promoted special treatment for the poor.

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shea Zellweger View Post
    Would you prefer "special concern" for the poor? The Gospel does seem to show preference to the poor. Jesus in the synagogue said "The spirit of the lord is upon me to... preach good news to the poor," while in regard to the rich young ruler he said "it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God." In the beatitudes of Luke, we read "blessed are you who are poor," yet "woe to you who are rich." In Luke 12, Jesus instructs the disciples to sell their possessions and give the money to the poor. Luke 14 shows us Jesus instructing his host to not invite rich people to his banquets, but the poor, the cripple, etc. The only verses in all of the Gospels where Jesus speaks about the poor and does not show them special favor is the same quote- "you will always have the poor with you," and the context of the verse is a woman lavishing rich gifts upon Jesus. Since he told his disciples that "whatever you do for the least of these, you do for me," and he is no longer with us, even that lavishing of rich gifts upon Jesus now just brings us right back to the poor.

    Loves them more? Perhaps not. But I don't think there's any way around the fact that Jesus promoted special treatment for the poor.
    Right on Shea. NT is also pretty clear that Jesus shows special concern for the church also, but then again the church is supposed to be "poor in spirit" so what I'm saying might be redundant.

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    Host Sports forum Shea Zellweger's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hank Crofford View Post
    Right on Shea. NT is also pretty clear that Jesus shows special concern for the church also, but then again the church is supposed to be "poor in spirit" so what I'm saying might be redundant.
    Or it could be that special bond of "marriage"- you know, "the church is the bride of Christ" and all that jazz. There is a special favor for those numbered among the children of God, but even among those children there is still an additional concern for those who are less fortunate.
    Thanks Paul DeBaufer, Todd Erickson - "thanks" for this post

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    Senior Member Hans Deventer's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Reece View Post
    About this you are wrong.
    I don't think so, because I didn't say it is useless to talk to fundamentalists in general, but to these specific people. Steve, even our Lord could not change the mind of some people in His day, who am I to think I could? Some did change when confronted, like Paul, most rather got rid of Him.

    But, if there's even a tenth of an inch of room, I'm very willing to engage in discussions for as long as it takes.
    Love the sinner, hate the sin? Love the sinner and hate your own sin! - Tony Campolo
    Thanks Paul DeBaufer, John Brickley, Steve Reece - "thanks" for this post

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Just to give you a sense of the willingness to talk and the integrity of the Concerned/Reformed Nazarenes Manny deliberately missquoted me and then proceeded to attempt to speak for me in his latest blog post, then when I sent in a response to correct the error he refused to publish that response (he did fix the spot where he missquoted me but did nothing to change where he completely misrepresented what I was saying). He responded by stating that it is a waste of time to debate with "emergents" (which by the way I have stated repeatedly that I am not). It is certainly easier to shout insults and character assisnations from a distance than it is to have the courage to enter into a real conversation.

    On another note Rich has made a concerted good faith effort to build bridges with Manny and establish lines of communication with him, but here is the response to that:

    Ok so Rich is nice and polite. That’s great but he is just as mislead as many from naz net.

    Check out what Rich says over at naz net
    (Posted by Steve Reece
    I was pretty fundamentalist in the 90s. Had I not been in conversation with people more graceful than I, I would today likely find myself right at home with the destructive behavior and doctrine being talked about here. Hans, you were part of that conversation, as was Barbara, Dennis (in person at NTS, what I pain I was early on in his class), and others here on NazNet, CRIVoice, and at NTS for the short time I attended.)

    Rich then says-
    That’s the same reason that I continue to try to have constructive conversations with Manny and others on his blog. Because my story is much the same. I thank God for those (particularly at ONU, then also at NTS) who were gracious with me as I was learning more about the Bible, Christian history, theology, etc. — learning those things that provide the much-needed context for better understanding what the Bible says, what we believe, where we fit in the broader Christian family, etc.end quote

    Sorry folks Rich is a nice guy but he is here to deceive.
    He is here to convince you that your position is wrong.
    These guys are thanking God they unlearned scripture and were deceived.

    CRI Voice-Dennis Bratcher-are you kidding me that guy has no clue what scripture teaches and promotes this article-
    Bratcher on NazNet: “Dr. Tashjian also presented an expanded version of that article at a Wesleyan Theological Society meeting (The Death of Jesus: Historically Contingent or Divinely Ordained?). That has remained online the entire time and has received almost no complaint except from predestinarian Southern Baptists.

    One of the crucial factors in such situations (and those to which I referred earlier) that tends to get ignored is the qualifications of those who are speaking. Dr. Tashjian has spent most of his ministry in education, including teaching and supervising a school in Jordan. He has pastored, spent eight years as a missionary in Taiwan, and earned a PhD in New Testament studies from a top level school. He is an expert in New Testament Greek, specializes in Jesus studies, and has authored articles and commentaries on the Gospels. That does not make him right. But it gives him some authority to speak from an informed position without being subjected to attacks from a DS with, I suspect, far less qualifications to speak on the topic (the same can be said for J. K. Warrick’s attack on Dr. Tashjian and SNU for the same response in HT).”
    end comment

    Dr. Tashjian’s article is straight up heresy but we should believe Dr Tashjian because he is educated?
    Tashjian has no idea what God’s Word teaches, his article shows that.
    Plus we should not believe JK Warrick because he doesn’t have the education to give a good response?
    What?
    Don’t fall for this ploy.
    The apostles except for Paul were simple men hardly any education at all.
    Surely not stupid though because they were taught by Jesus.
    Rich may be a nice guy and that’s great.
    But don’t believe what he has to say. Look again at his statement on why he is here.
    Come on folks wake up.

    Don’t fall for this deception.
    In my opinion Dennis Bratcher is a false teacher because of what he writes and promotes.
    Dennis does not rightly divide the word of God.
    Rich may just be deceived but don’t believe him.
    Read Rich’s words again.
    Read it in context on why he is here.

    He may be a nice wolf.
    But he is still a wolf.
    Tim
    The lack of integrity shown and the attacking spirit demonstrated make it extremely difficult if not impossible to have any meaningful conversation with Manny or Tim at all. I think we serve the church best by endevoring to demonstrate a graceful alternative to the kind of cultish legalism shown by these two. For me personally it is frightening where they are going and it is even more frightening how many people are taking them seriously.

  19. #99
    Senior Member Rich Schmidt's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by John Brickley View Post
    On another note Rich has made a concerted good faith effort to build bridges with Manny and establish lines of communication with him, but here is the response to that:
    Tim Wirth isn't my biggest fan.
    Thanks Paul DeBaufer - "thanks" for this post

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    Senior Member Paul DeBaufer's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    One cannot have a conversation with Tim. I tried last year on several occasions and they always degraded into ad hominems (and I do fall into such). But there may still be value in discussing the issues, just no value in getting baited into one on one battle with Tim or Manny. These men are rigid in their thinking and out to change everyone to their narrow view of scripture. While I fully believe there is a complete lack of love in the tactics they use, I do consider them brothers in Christ.
    You can be right or you can be in relationship
    Thanks David Gerber, John Brickley, Jim Abrams - "thanks" for this post

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    Host Gen. Disc. Forum David Pettigrew's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by John Dahl View Post
    David,

    Did you really mean to say that Jesus "especially" loves one group of people more than another? If so, do you have a scriptural argument to back that statement up and if so, could you share it with me?
    Yes I did mean to say that. Yes I do have scriptural support. No, I don't believe it would be helpful to share it. Please see my other posts in this thread for my reasoning. God bless!

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    Multi-Forum Host Kevin Rector's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    This thread began as a discussion of a letter circulated by a District Superintendent. It has degenerated into a thread about Manny and Tim. Manny and Tim have shown themselves to have a caustic spirit in line with the great Inquisition. They are un-credentialed, have no authority in the church, have established themselves as the supreme arbiters of truth and theology, have consistently shown no willingness to generously or graciously engage their opponents and perceived opponents, perpetually exhibit malicious guilt-by-associate, do a lot of name calling, and in Tim's case aren't even Nazarene. I think it is unfruitful to engage them directly and I think we should just disengage.

    Orville Jenkins Jr. on the other hand is a District Superintendent. He may be (and most likely is) very much in the minority of District Superintendents and Nazarenes with his views (let's not forget that the proposed changes to make Article 4 more fundamentalist was soundly defeated). But he deserves our respect by virtue of his position and is categorically different than Manny and Tim.

    Let's stop talking about Manny and Tim and engage the actual topic of the thread.

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    Senior Member Andy Mistak's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Rector View Post
    Orville Jenkins Jr. on the other hand is a District Superintendent. He may be (and most likely is) very much in the minority of District Superintendents and Nazarenes with his views (let's not forget that the proposed changes to make Article 4 more fundamentalist was soundly defeated). But he deserves our respect by virtue of his position and is categorically different than Manny and Tim.

    Let's stop talking about Manny and Tim and engage the actual topic of the thread.
    OK Dr Jenkins has attempted to de-legitimize theological positions to the left of him by inferring that they may lead to political positions to the left of him. He has, in effect made agreement with a conservative political point of view a litmus test for the orhodoxy of theological views and individual christians, and someone who makes a statement like that is not deserving of my respect, regardless of his title or credentials. If I can't be a political progressive in the Church of the Nazarene, and he's saying that I can't, I can't be a part of Church of the Nazarene.

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shea Zellweger View Post
    Or it could be that special bond of "marriage"- you know, "the church is the bride of Christ" and all that jazz. There is a special favor for those numbered among the children of God, but even among those children there is still an additional concern for those who are less fortunate.
    Sure. You can see Christ's intentional action all through the NT to set up a community modeled after himself which he calls his bride. I would just say that special favor towards those who are within the church is different in substance than those outside. A husband doesn't love his wife the same as he loves the wife of his next door neighbor(hopefully) and Christ's actions in setting up this community seems to show he has a special concern for those inside it. We love those more who we spend time with, it's just natural. As the worshiping community, the church has the privilege of spending more time in communion with Christ than those outside it.
    Thanks Shea Zellweger, Paul DeBaufer - "thanks" for this post

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Rector View Post
    Orville Jenkins Jr. on the other hand is a District Superintendent. He may be (and most likely is) very much in the minority of District Superintendents and Nazarenes with his views (let's not forget that the proposed changes to make Article 4 more fundamentalist was soundly defeated). But he deserves our respect by virtue of his position and is categorically different than Manny and Tim.
    It seems to me that he may have been rebuffed by those to whom he reports so he's resorted to a letter writing campaign. Respect not only comes by position, but by practice.
    Thanks Paul DeBaufer - "thanks" for this post

  26. #106
    Senior Member Craig Laughlin's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hank Crofford View Post
    Sure. You can see Christ's intentional action all through the NT to set up a community modeled after himself which he calls his bride. I would just say that special favor towards those who are within the church is different in substance than those outside. A husband doesn't love his wife the same as he loves the wife of his next door neighbor(hopefully) and Christ's actions in setting up this community seems to show he has a special concern for those inside it. We love those more who we spend time with, it's just natural. As the worshiping community, the church has the privilege of spending more time in communion with Christ than those outside it.
    I think conceiving of God's love as a quantifiable thing which one group can have more or less of is problematic at best. I think God loves both those inside and outside, those with lots of extra and those with not enough. However I would venture that his love is expressed based on the loved one's needs. Because each group has different needs the expression of the love looks different. The analogy I prefer is the parental one. (Biblically - Father/Son) I love both of my children the same but because they are different it is expressed differently. One of the ways my son and I show love is via Paintball. (Nothing says I love you like a welt) My daughter on the other hand needs to receive love differently. To extend the analogy, if one of them were gravely ill I would express love in ways that would involve a lot of time and attention. From the outside it might look like I love that child more but in reality nothing could be further from the truth. It would just be that the ill child needed to receive my love in a different way.

    - Way off track from the thread but thanks for making me think about this.

  27. #107
    Senior Member Rich Schmidt's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Bourland View Post
    It seems to me that he may have been rebuffed by those to whom he reports so he's resorted to a letter writing campaign. Respect not only comes by position, but by practice.
    Hmm... It doesn't sound like he's been rebuffed, according to his July letter (the main letter under discussion here).

    I am grateful for the response from the board of general superintendents to my initial letter. They, too, identify with many of the concerns I and others share, have asked a number of people to partner with them in discussion about the needs, and even have some initiatives presently underway. In a reply to them I have submitted some suggestions for their consideration...
    Thanks Paul DeBaufer - "thanks" for this post

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    Multi-Forum Host Kevin Rector's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Bourland View Post
    It seems to me that he may have been rebuffed by those to whom he reports so he's resorted to a letter writing campaign. Respect not only comes by position, but by practice.
    While my purely anecdotal observation is that those who engage in a letter writing campaign are often on the margins and feel threatened and often don't have the support of their superiors, it should be noted that your observation is really just conjecture.

    Quote Originally Posted by Andy Mistak View Post
    OK Dr Jenkins has attempted to de-legitimize theological positions to the left of him by inferring that they may lead to political positions to the left of him. He has, in effect made agreement with a conservative political point of view a litmus test for the orthodoxy of theological views and individual Christians, and someone who makes a statement like that is not deserving of my respect, regardless of his title or credentials. If I can't be a political progressive in the Church of the Nazarene, and he's saying that I can't, I can't be a part of Church of the Nazarene.
    I don't have to agree with those placed in authority in the church in order to be able to respect them. I don't agree 100% with everything my DS says, but I certainly respect him immensely. You must keep in mind that Dr. Jenkins is an authority and his office deserves respect, but unless you are on his district he has zero say in whether or not you get to be a Nazarene (I suppose he could file a formal complaint but that would be exceedingly unlikely and it would be even less unlikely to be successful). His position dictates that we give him a serious listen, it does not dictate that we agree with him, nor does it dictate that we do not actively work to counteract his position where it is mistaken.
    Thanks Craig Laughlin, Ryan Plott, Mike Schutz, Todd Erickson - "thanks" for this post

  29. #109
    Senior Member Craig Laughlin's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Rector View Post
    His position dictates that we give him a serious listen, it does not dictate that we agree with him, nor does it dictate that we do not actively work to counteract his position where it is mistaken.
    I think this is right on the money. I welcome Dr. Jenkins to the discussion because unlike CN's he can be held accountable for both the substance and style of his communications. I believe that a respectful, careful dialog on the issues will move the conversation in the direction I hold but even if it does not at least the church can have a discussion that is Christ honoring or rebuff those in authority that choose destructive worldly ways of engaging their brothers and sisters in Christ.

    I am not concerned about him writing letters to other DS's. I think DS's should communicate with one another and with the clergy as well as the lay people of the church. The fact that he did this in written form, which he knows can and probably will be made public is greatly superior in my opinion to quiet conversations and arm twisting in back rooms and hallways.

    From my perspective, this is where we cut the CN's out of the conversation because they practice a sub-Christian form of dialog and conflict resolution. Their position is now publicly represented by an accountable official in our denomination. He is the face of the issue. Hurray, let the dialog begin and let all honor one another as brother's and sisters in Christ.
    Last edited by Craig Laughlin; July 20th, 2010 at 12:39 PM.

  30. #110
    Senior Member Rich Schmidt's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Some quick observations, having just read through both the April letter and the July letter. (Thanks again, Paul, for the links!) These aren't my only observations or thoughts on the matter, but I don't have much time!

    April letter:

    1. He's received 5 or 6 letters in 2010 from pastors on his district expressing concerns about where we're going as a denomination, specifically related to emergent church issues.

    2. The House Studio is a hush-hush project? Then why have I heard so much about it the past two years?

    3. Three pastors on his district have expressed reservations about sending their children to Nazarene colleges.

    I think it's important to remember that Rev. Jenkins is responding in part to concerns expressed by the pastors on his district. I don't know how large his district is, but he has had several of them express significant concern.


    July letter:

    His view seems to be that we Nazarenes are (or should be) to the right of / more conservative than "mainline evangelical Christianity" (as epitomized by the Catalyst West conference). I was always taught that we Nazarenes are "evangelical but not fundamentalist," which would actually make us slightly to the left of / more liberal than most of what is today considered an increasingly fundamentalist American evangelicalism. Theologically speaking, anyway. Perhaps this illustrates a tension between the "Wesleyan" and "holiness" parts of our Wesleyan-holiness identity.

    He really seems to confuse theological liberalism with political/social liberalism.

    It's interesting that he concludes by referring to Acts 15:8-9 ("God, who knows the heart, showed that he accepted them by giving the Holy Spirit to them, just as he did to us.") I think some emergent/liberal-leaning Nazarenes would hope that Rev. Jenkins would recognize the work of the Holy Spirit in their lives and accept them as brothers and fellow Nazarenes, just as the Jerusalem church accepted the Gentile converts.

    (BTW, I keep referring to him as "brother Jenkins" partly because I don't know what other title to use. Is he Dr. Jenkins? Or perhaps I should use Rev. Jenkins?)

    Edited: I changed "brother Jenkins" to "Rev. Jenkins" after someone let me know in a Private Message that "brother Jenkins" might come across in a way I wasn't intending.
    Last edited by Rich Schmidt; July 20th, 2010 at 12:51 PM.

  31. #111
    Senior Member Bob Hunter's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Rector View Post
    This thread began as a discussion of a letter circulated by a District Superintendent. It has degenerated into a thread about Manny and Tim. Manny and Tim have shown themselves to have a caustic spirit in line with the great Inquisition. They are un-credentialed, have no authority in the church, have established themselves as the supreme arbiters of truth and theology, have consistently shown no willingness to generously or graciously engage their opponents and perceived opponents, perpetually exhibit malicious guilt-by-associate, do a lot of name calling, and in Tim's case aren't even Nazarene. I think it is unfruitful to engage them directly and I think we should just disengage.

    Orville Jenkins Jr. on the other hand is a District Superintendent. He may be (and most likely is) very much in the minority of District Superintendents and Nazarenes with his views (let's not forget that the proposed changes to make Article 4 more fundamentalist was soundly defeated). But he deserves our respect by virtue of his position and is categorically different than Manny and Tim.

    Let's stop talking about Manny and Tim and engage the actual topic of the thread.
    Kevin,

    As one who has taken his share of bruises from Tim & Manny, I totally agree. It is tempting to respond, but I am refraining from doing so and I am encouraging others to disengage completely. I know Rich has a great heart and sincerely desires constructive dialog, but it is not possible. Jesus talked about dusting our feet off, exercising the sacrament of failure. Lets face it, we have tried to engage Tim & Manny in a constructive way and we have failed. (I personally take responsibility for some of the failure...I said things in ways that didn't always help the dialog) I don't know anyone who has succeeded though, do you? So what makes us think that the 264th time (or attempt) is going to be any different? I just think it is time to give it up, and stun them with our silence.

  32. #112
    Senior Member James Diggs's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Rector View Post
    This thread began as a discussion of a letter circulated by a District Superintendent. It has degenerated into a thread about....

    Orville Jenkins Jr. on the other hand is a District Superintendent. He may be (and most likely is) very much in the minority of District Superintendents and Nazarenes with his views (let's not forget that the proposed changes to make Article 4 more fundamentalist was soundly defeated). But he deserves our respect by virtue of his position and is categorically different ....

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Rector View Post
    I don't have to agree with those placed in authority in the church in order to be able to respect them. I don't agree 100% with everything my DS says, but I certainly respect him immensely. You must keep in mind that Dr. Jenkins is an authority and his office deserves respect, but unless you are on his district he has zero say in whether or not you get to be a Nazarene (I suppose he could file a formal complaint but that would be exceedingly unlikely and it would be even less unlikely to be successful). His position dictates that we give him a serious listen, it does not dictate that we agree with him, nor does it dictate that we do not actively work to counteract his position where it is mistaken.
    I received an email forwarded to me in April called "What Say You?" from Orville Jenkins, Jr. It was addressed to 30 DS's whom Jenkins refers to as "trusted friends". Obviously someone in this group he sent the email to leaked the email to others. Regardless, I appeared to have received a copy of the email that Jenkins refers to have followed up with at the link provided in this thread.

    I have not read through the whole thread, frankly I was avoiding it because I thought it was about others I am tired of talking about, but Kevin points out this isn't what the topic was about. But it does seem the source of the letter as public domain does come from HERE.

    My question is was this letter meant for the public? It is clear that the original email that it was following up was not meant for the public. I never mentioned them in public or passed them on because of this.

    It appears now that the letter has been removed, and a lot of posturing is being done where it was posted self righteously "defending" Orville Jenkins Jr from criticism- but did they have permission to post a private email (likely not originally addressed to them) to begin with?

    If not- shame on them for using a private email to advance their agenda.

    But also, if it was not meant for the public what should our responsibility be in how we respond?

    Kevin brings up a good point that the authority of Jenkins' office deserves respect, and he also deserves respect for being a human being.

    I am not standing in judgment of the thread; I am not qualified, have failed too often in the past myself, and don't have all the information. I haven't read the letter in question (it appears to be gone) and I have no idea about whether it was intended for the public or not. I also am not sure now that it is public what the right response is.

    I am just trying to tread carefully out of respect, especially if that respect has been already violated by the ones who posted what may have been a private email not meant for them. If so, despite finding someone they believe to sympathies with them about their fears they may have betrayed him by using the letter. This would again show that they do not know the difference between being "right" (as in having all the "right" answers) and the righteousness that God calls us all to in the way we are to love him and our neighbors.

    I just want to make sure that our conversation moves us toward righteousness rather than just arguing for the "right" position or answers too.

  33. #113
    Senior Member James Diggs's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rich Schmidt View Post
    Some quick observations, having just read through both the April letter and the July letter. Thanks again, Paul, for the links!)
    Yes thanks for the links. The April letter is the same that I had gotten, but it did not seem to be for the public. But, it looks like the July Letter is "To Whom It May Concern" so perhaps it was intended to for anyone in the public.

    So I guess we can disregard that aspect of the concern I expressed in my last post. It can even be deleted.
    Thanks Paul DeBaufer - "thanks" for this post

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    Host Book, Movie & CE forums Ryan Scott's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by James Diggs View Post
    My question is was this letter meant for the public? It is clear that the original email that it was following up was not meant for the public. I never mentioned them in public or passed them on because of this.

    I've been a little worried about this as well. Has anyone contacted him to see if it was intended for public viewing? If not, perhaps we should remove it and links to it from this site. It seems only fair. I certainly have a different vocabulary when speaking in private than I might use in public and would not want to be inadvertently on the other end of this situation.
    ...just my $.02.
    Thanks James Diggs, Paul DeBaufer - "thanks" for this post

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    Senior Member James Diggs's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan Scott View Post
    I've been a little worried about this as well. Has anyone contacted him to see if it was intended for public viewing? If not, perhaps we should remove it and links to it from this site. It seems only fair. I certainly have a different vocabulary when speaking in private than I might use in public and would not want to be inadvertently on the other end of this situation.
    Tim just emailed me to tell me they had permission from Orville himself to post the letters.

    Thank you Tim

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Craig Laughlin View Post
    I think conceiving of God's love as a quantifiable thing which one group can have more or less of is problematic at best. I think God loves both those inside and outside, those with lots of extra and those with not enough. However I would venture that his love is expressed based on the loved one's needs. Because each group has different needs the expression of the love looks different. The analogy I prefer is the parental one. (Biblically - Father/Son) I love both of my children the same but because they are different it is expressed differently. One of the ways my son and I show love is via Paintball. (Nothing says I love you like a welt) My daughter on the other hand needs to receive love differently. To extend the analogy, if one of them were gravely ill I would express love in ways that would involve a lot of time and attention. From the outside it might look like I love that child more but in reality nothing could be further from the truth. It would just be that the ill child needed to receive my love in a different way.

    - Way off track from the thread but thanks for making me think about this.
    I definitely don't have a problem with saying God loves everyone or loves them in His own unique way. Thanks for the post Craig.
    Thanks Paul DeBaufer, Craig Laughlin - "thanks" for this post

  37. #117
    Host Book, Movie & CE forums Ryan Scott's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by James Diggs View Post
    Tim just emailed me to tell me they had permission from Orville himself to post the letters.

    Thank you Tim
    Would it be appropriate for one of the moderators to go back and separate out the posts specifically addressing these letters?
    ...just my $.02.
    Thanks Paul DeBaufer - "thanks" for this post

  38. #118
    Senior Member Rich Schmidt's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan Scott View Post
    Would it be appropriate for one of the moderators to go back and separate out the posts specifically addressing these letters?
    I'm not sure why they should (or if it would even be possible). But that's just my personal opinion. Sometimes when threads get pulled apart, we're left with bits that don't make sense because the context is lost.

    As for the letters themselves, the second/July letter is clearly meant for public consumption. The first/April one isn't so clear... but it seems to have been pretty widely disseminated already at this point.
    Thanks Paul DeBaufer, James Diggs - "thanks" for this post

  39. #119
    Senior Member Hans Deventer's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan Scott View Post
    Would it be appropriate for one of the moderators to go back and separate out the posts specifically addressing these letters?
    I don't know but it definitely is appropriate not to presume that a moderator reads each and every post, and therefore ask this kind of questions through PM.
    Love the sinner, hate the sin? Love the sinner and hate your own sin! - Tony Campolo

  40. #120
    Host Book, Movie & CE forums Ryan Scott's Avatar

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    Re: Letter from Orville Jenkins Jr.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hans Deventer View Post
    I don't know but it definitely is appropriate not to presume that a moderator reads each and every post, and therefore ask this kind of questions through PM.
    I wasn't. I was hoping to get input from some other posters before making a request, but thanks for the reminder. I will be certain to use that route if the situation presents itself.
    ...just my $.02.

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