How to work through complex problems in one easy step 17

Perry Noble puts his critics on the couch for some psychoanalysis this morning.

He starts from the admirably humble position of assuring us that if someone doesn’t like him, it’s because they’re jealous of him.

If that bombshell doesn’t seal the argument for you, he adds this:

Why do “Christians” hate people who don’t believe just like them?  (The reformed guys are usually the worse…and, being pretty much reformed in my theology I believe I can say that with integrity!)  We all have different beliefs…but I would say if we could claim the Nicean Creed as our common ground…we should be mature enough to work through the rest.

Now, I’m not sure if he’s saying that because he’s reformed, he has a hate problem himself. He might be, because it does help to explain this characterization from just a few weeks ago:

We don’t fight battles with people that claim to be Christian but don’t like us. [emphasis added]

So, people who don’t like Perry are just jealous pagans. Hateful? Surely not.

As for working through differences, I also like Perry’s mature approach from a few weeks ago:

We don’t fight battles with bloggers. We don’t read the stuff, we don’t go on and comment, we don’t do that stuff.

Plugging your ears and shouting “I don’t hear you, I don’t hear you” counts as working things through?

It must be nice to live in a world like that.

17 thoughts on “How to work through complex problems in one easy step

  1. Paul Nov 12, 2009 11:47 am

    I read the post. Here are a few thoughts…

    1. Noble often does not like a person or a church eithe critizing him or another church. But yet, is not he, Perry NOble, criticizing the churches the criticize. Inconsistant if you ask me.

    2. I’m not sure what Noble means by being reformed. If I didn’ tknow any of his theolgoy, and just had his methods to go by, I’d say he is a semi-pelagian at best.

    3. Noble often says he doesn’t respond to criticism. But yet, look how much time and effort he uses to defend mainly Himself on his blogs and even his sermons at times. I would wager that he is reading some things. Again, inconsistent.

    • James Duncan Nov 12, 2009 7:23 pm

      Ron, portraying a few straw men as an army of crazy religious bogeymen does have the effect of uniting PN’s supporters behind him, which is why I think he keeps doing it. It’s remarkable how he never identifies them. I think if he did, his defenders would be surprised at how benign they (we?) really are, then they’d wonder why he couldn’t actually ever defend himself by engaging them.

      Paul, here’s another inconsistency I didn’t get to in the post.

      On one hand, PN says this:

      Why do pastors/church leaders listen to people who tell them what they should be doing…but have actually never done it?

      On the other hand he tells churches that they waste their time doing Sunday School. You’d assume, therefore, that if he’s giving advice on Sunday School that he, you know, does it.

      He doesn’t, but that’s no surprise, is it?

  2. Ron Nov 12, 2009 5:51 pm

    What has always struck me as interesting is PNs constant focus on his critics. This not a new phenomena. I remember the topic of criticism of NS being raised by PN on stage on quite a few occasions during my years of attendance, and I think this focus began, or was at least magnified, soon after they moved into their current location. I don’t recall such a focus when they were at Anderson University. May have been there, but I never noticed it.

    I remember PN sharing examples of criticism on stage, and they were always rather silly ones, that he had heard that critics of NS were spreading rumors that NS has ATMs in the foyer, that he had heard people say NS asks for financial records before someone can join the church. He thereby presents to those in the audience an overarching inference that all criticisms towards NS are shallow, silly, and unfounded. He would often speak of blogs, never giving their name, that would unjustly criticize him. I was, at the time, quite honestly defensive of NS after listening to such. In conversations with others who attended, they were effected in much the same way.

    Not to put PN on the analysts couch, what we may have is an unfortunate case of someone with either a martyr complex or someone who is using rather sophomoric, but perhaps effective, physiological manipulation in rallying the troops, in creating an ‘us vs.them’ milieu that fosters unity among the attendees.

    I have never heard of another pastor, other than those who were truly cultist and unorthodox in their belief systems, that were so hyper-focused on critics. There is much irony in PN spending so much verbiage in communicating how much he ignores critics.

  3. Paul Nov 12, 2009 8:27 pm

    Ron,

    good insight. much to think about there.

    Duncan,

    Noble would make a great politician in his inconsistantcies. You can never pin him down…reminds me of Bill Clinton. 🙂

    Seriously, why anyone would follow this man is beyond me.

  4. Ben M Nov 13, 2009 8:09 am

    Do you all know anyone who enjoys being critcized?

    I wish PN would not comment, discuss or talk to critics in any way shape or form but thats just my personal preference.

    He does bring up a few points though. There are critics that sure seem to hate and don’t, in my opinion, approach things in love.

    Paul, church is about following Christ, not a preacher.

  5. James Duncan Nov 13, 2009 10:08 am

    Ben,

    The problem is that Perry dishes out criticism in the most self-serving way, then blanches at the mere existence of criticism that might be headed his way. You can’t read his blog or listen to more than a few minutes of his sermons without seeing him criticize other bloggers or preachers.

    Not that I’m going to throw stones on him doing that, but he never names names. It means that he can never be challenged or refuted because you never know exactly who he’s talking about (though we can figure out some of his targets by deduction). He takes a never-ending series of cheap shots against EVERY other church (if he won’t name particulars, they’re all targets), yet censors his flock from hearing any criticism of himself.

    He talks a good game, but can he play it himself?

    One more thing. It drives me nuts whenever he talks about the haters. Who hates him? I don’t. Let’s see him name names.

    If mere disagreement is considered hateful, why does Perry hate me so much?

  6. Paul Nov 13, 2009 11:41 am

    Ben,

    I agree with you 100%. We should follow Jesus, and not a preacher. My fear is not only Newspring, but many churches from all backgrounds with a one-man show type pastor are following the pastor blindly and not follwing Jesus as he is revealed in the Scriptures.

  7. Paul Nov 13, 2009 11:44 am

    Sam, just read your link. Chandler is right on.

  8. Simon P. Nov 13, 2009 12:40 pm

    The only thing I question on the quoted blog post. In #4 Perry says that we should only listen to people who have been there and have done it (speaking of himself maybe, simply conjecture there.) What about C.S. Lewis and “Mere Christianity”? Lewis was an Atheist turned Christian and, I believe, points out some fundamental ideas that help any Christian to think about things from an outside perspective(oh wait… we aren’t “Christians” are we.) When I look at PN’s logic though I see that this book is garbage?

  9. Ben M Nov 13, 2009 1:13 pm

    Paul, I understand and agree with the point. That’s a real issue in most churches today regardless of church size. I’m not sure I can think of an example of a church that is not a one-man show since there is only one senior pastor though. Still, I see your point. And for those that do follow the Pastor rather than Christ I would point out that, by following the Pastor, perhaps that will put them in a position to one day realize that they need to be following Christ.

  10. Tommy F. Nov 13, 2009 3:52 pm

    Criticizing critics for being critical is very helpful in diverting attention from one’s faults, isn’t it?

    Someone ought to hand Perry a pair of marbles, and say something like: “either take on your critics directly or stop criticizing others. Practice what you preach.” Until then, I’ll assume this is the only pair you have.

  11. chadwick Nov 13, 2009 10:01 pm

    Noble may claim to be “Reformed” in doctrine. However, according to my observations, he is “Pragminian” in practice.

    “Pragminian”:[Noun] Arminian with Pragmatic practices.

    Tommy stated: “Someone ought to hand Perry a pair of marbles, and say something like: “either take on your critics directly or stop criticizing others. Practice what you preach.” Until then, I’ll assume this is the only pair you have.”

    :LOL: ROFL

  12. chadwick Nov 13, 2009 10:02 pm

    Oh . . . no emoticons here . . . oh, well! 😀

  13. chadwick Nov 13, 2009 10:03 pm

    There are emoticons . . . I just didn’t do it right! DUH! 😛

  14. David J Horn Nov 14, 2009 12:27 pm

    I think Noble claims “Reformed” in order to justify his antics and rebellion. He clearly has a misunderstanding when it comes to being Reformed.

    I’m amused at how much time Noble spends talking about critics when he claims he does not read, talk to, etc… critics. Something smells a little fishy :0

  15. Nolan Nov 16, 2009 12:51 pm

    I don’t have a beef with Perry talking about his critics on his blog…however, I may or may not choose to handle the situation differently.

    BUT…If anyone is using the time usually designated for proclimation of the Gospel and preaching of the Word (Sunday mornings) to address your critics, unless you are addressing cricitism or fighting through persecution while faithfully teaching through texts like Matthew 10 and others like it, I kinda have a problem with that. The time for the preaching of the Word is designed for WORSHIP of the Creator of the universe, not to try to justify or legitimize ANYthing having to do with our actions…I can’t see how God is glorified by an explination of human action.

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