Emir Caner's Hatred: Where Words And Action Collide

 “…they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved. For this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they will believe what is false, in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness” (2 Thessalonians 2:10b-12).

 While I grieve over the effect that the Saga of Ergun Caner’s Mountain of Lies has had on American church and the Southern Baptist Convention in particular, I grieve even more over what professing Christians’ reactions to his Mountain of Lies has revealed about them. Yet the worst part of all of it may well be the gross sin and evil taking place within the Caner family.

Emir Caner and Ergun Caner are acting like they hate each other.

Of course they would never say out loud that they hate each other. Ergun is an excellent liar and plays to the crowd better than all but a handful of people in this world. He is obviously really good at playing the politics of the SBC’s powerful Good Ol’ Boy network, such that he has gotten such well-placed men as Norm Geisler, Paige Patterson, and Richard Land on his side, to cover for him and pretend like it’s all good. Emir, if he cares for his position at Truett-McConnell, would never endanger his comfortable position by going around saying such an offensive thing. Yet is love measured in words, or in action?

Let me explain what I mean. Emir Caner is in a position to know with certainty that Ergun continues, to this day, to pump his Mountain of Lies full of steroids. Emir knows when the Caner family moved to Ohio. He knows that Ergun was not a jihadi youth, that he didn’t dress differently, that his transformation from “Michael ‘Butch’ Caner” to “Errrrrgun Mehhhhhmet Caner” occurred well into his adult years, that their mother did not remove her veil in the baptistry, that Ergun’s gibberish “Arabic” is not Arabic at all. He knows, and he is without any possible doubt aware of Ergun’s behavior and statements in recent years, the controversy and the cover-up.

“Therefore, to one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, to him it is sin” (James 4:17).

“My brethren, if any among you strays from the truth and one turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins” (James 5:19-20).

What is the end result for a man when he perpetuates a lifestyle of unrepentant sin for years? Whether his sin is atoned for by the blood of Jesus because the man has been born from above and regenerated or whether he is lost, the end result is nothing good. Severe discipline and painful correction for the believer, or more intensified torment in Hell for the unbeliever.

Love, meanwhile, is a commitment to the true good, indeed the true best, of the object of one’s love. The best thing that could happen in Ergun Caner’s life is repentance, as the Lord Jesus will, despite all the damage Caner has wrought in His Body, still forgive and cleanse him. Ergun can have a testimony like the Apostle Paul of Jesus’ mercy:

“I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service, even though I was formerly a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent aggressor. Yet I was shown mercy because I acted ignorantly in unbelief; and the grace of our Lord was more than abundant, with the faith and love which are found in Christ Jesus. It is a trustworthy statement, deserving full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, among whom I am foremost of all. Yet for this reason I found mercy, so that in me as the foremost, Jesus Christ might demonstrate His perfect patience as an example for those who would believe in Him for eternal life” (1 Timothy 1:12-16).

Emir is not only not calling out the sin of his brother; he is enabling the perpetuation of that sin. He knows his brother is an unrepentant liar, and he is furthering his brother’s sin. His behavior is no different in quality than a drug dealer, who helps draw addicts further into destruction.

“The one who says he is in the Light and yet hates his brother is in the darkness until now. The one who loves his brother abides in the Light and there is no cause for stumbling in him. But the one who hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going because the darkness has blinded his eyes” (1 John 2:9-11).

True brotherly love demands that the one who has a close relationship with and direct access to the truth of an inveterate liar actually confront that liar and call him to repent and believe the Gospel, and obey the Law of Jesus Christ. It does not leave a brother in darkness for the sake of temporary, worldly gains at the expense of the soul. Love demands a devotion to the profit and benefit of the beloved; Emir is enabling Ergun to continue to gain the whole world and lose his soul. As Emir is best-placed of anyone else in the world to call Ergun to repent, and he has refused to do so for over a decade of lies, Emir is guilty of leaving his brother in darkness, of helping him dig his pit. He is acting in hatred.

How does one recognise faith? By words, or by actions?

How does one recognise love? By words, or by actions?

[Contributed by Rhology]

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74 Responses

  1. Mark says:


    Good’ Ol’ Boy network? What is that?

    The SBC Leadership and SBC Preachers are divided by those that profess to being in the Calvinist/Tulip camp and those that don’t.

    Both sides are clashing like adversaries that “Hate” each other. If that is the case then salvation is questionable.

    Let me guess you embrace TULIP and most of those defending Caner don’t embrace TULIP.


    • It’s those who believe in truth, integrity and dealing with sin (according to the Lord’s instructions) and those who don’t. There are a few active defenders of Ergun Caner, like Emir, Geisler, Land, Lumpkins and a few others. There are many more passive defenders who want to pretend its none of their business. Time will tell if Mohler, Moore, and others who should know better, will have the courage to speak out.

  2. rhology says:

    It is far more hateful to refuse to call someone on their sin when you know without a doubt they are perpetually living in sin, than it is to debate a theological concept all the time b/c you think the other side is wrong and you want them to be in the right.
    I think your comment is a bit mixed up.

  3. rhology says:

    No, nothing like RefMont, Scott. Open your eyes!

    • JD Hall says:

      Just a reminder that Scott Shaver’s comments will be deleted until he answers my two questions (1) Did Caner lie and (2) if so, has he repented. He can answer them however he wants, but he has to answer them to comment here. We’ll not waste our time with posts void of integrity. — JD

  4. Bennett Willis says:

    This seems like the typical Caner defense–attack the person who objects to the behavior. Maybe it is that Calvinist believers have a more developed conscience than some of the rest of us.

    http://sbcvoices.com/its-none-of-my-business/ sums it up very nicely in the inset paragraph about half way through his commentary about it being “None of my Business.” He says: I am convinced by the evidence I have seen that Caner created a mythological life-story, rooted not in truth but in expedience. He made a name for himself based on a false story. I think that, at best, he needs to repent of his in and at worst, he is disqualified from public ministry. I am convinced by the evidence Jason Smathers has put forward that Caner’s story was fraudulent. – See more at: http://sbcvoices.com/its-none-of-my-business/#sthash.fQwpzs5F.dpuf

    Of course Bro. Miller does lean toward the Calvinist way of thinking–but he has a way with words.

    • True. Caner defenders can’t really defend his statements, especially if their excuses were subject to cross-examination. So they are constantly resorting to diversions. Miller’s argument is first unBiblical (a direct contradiction of Ephesians 5:11 and then to the entire history of the prophets) and hypocritical. He’ll criticize and confront people he doesn’t know for what he perceives as their sin. (I had to threaten to report him for e-mail harassment to get him to stop e-mailing me with false accusations.) He’s simply making excuses for refusing to rock the boat.

  5. Mark says:

    Hi Scott,

    I’m trying to understand the root of problems that is causing Toxic and UN-Godly sparring going on between Leaders and Preachers within the SBC.

    The Caner dispute may (or may not) be a fabricated diversion to the real battle among those who profess the gospel.

    Labeling seems to be tool that exacerbates more rhetoric (and hatred) among those with differing Doctrinal Ideologies that degrades the integrity of those in dispute.

    I’m beginning to think the battleground is more to do with Doctrine rather than substance otherwise there would be a consensus.

    • I think it has to do with a fundamentally different view of what Christianity: Is it a discleship to follow the Lord Jesus or is it the old time religion that dispenses feelings, especially assurance of rightness.

      If you believe it’s about being a disciple of the Lord Jesus, you cannot conceive of tolerating selecting an unrepentant liar as the president of a “Christian” college. If you think it’s the “old time religion”, selecting Caner makes sense.

  6. rhology says:


    There are those who are sinfully covering up sin, and their tone and wording may or may not be sinful.
    Then there are those who are with righteous desire for holiness and the repentance of sinful men are obeying the Scripture and trying to expose sin so it can be dealt with, repented of, and forgiven, and their tone and wording may or may not be sinful.

    There’s a huge difference between the two. If you think the tone and wording are sinful, simply bring your arguments and evidence forward, and if I, for example, have said things in a bad way, I will apologise and repent of it.
    However, don’t act like there are two sides of equal moral standing. That is not even close to the truth.

    Don’t defend this Mountain of Lies or the guy who built it.

  7. Neptune says:

    I’m glad to see an article about this. I’ve been wondering about Emir Caner and why he would be comfortable with how Ergun is lying about his past. I’ve never understood how two brothers – one who is lying and the other who is enabling the sham – are both presidents of Georgia Baptist colleges. Again, I go back to the Georgia state integrity grade of F. That bad grade obviously filters into business, politics, banking and even religion.

    Also, I have found it curious that Ergun rarely mentions his wife, especially since moving down here. Wonder why? Or, does he honestly plan on making Mount Vernon, Georgia (home of BPC) his family residence? Or, is he plotting a “Caner Brother” takeover of Georgia Baptists?

    He seems to have been off preaching or at conferences every weekend, or back in Texas, or somewhere else besides here in Green Acres. Seriously – this place is not his speed. It is a very S-L-O-W pace. I honestly can’t picture Caner staying here for any length of time. This is about as rural as it gets, unless you move to the Appalachian Mountains.

    Ergun Caner in Mount Vernon = Jihad meets Mayberry. LOL This is a culture shock for people from other big towns in Georgia. If you’ve lived in much larger areas or states, this is like another planet.

  8. Mark says:


    I have repetitively suggested the “sparring” and “gloating” looks like adversaries that “hate” each rather than brothers that “love” each other. That is where the appearance of sin exist.

    If you think either side has handled this flawlessly or if you think religious partisanship has nothing to do with this debate, then we are in disagreement.

    Both sides argue in favor of “Truth”. Love will need to supersede before “Truth” can be believable. (1 Corinthians 13:13)

    I’m not defending anything. I’m taken back by any who choose to embrace toxic sparring, labeling and the character assassinations going on, regardless of those that profess TULIP and those that profess TULIP as heresy. (long before the Caner diversion)

    If either side continues to argue the Caner thing in cyber space or on the airwaves in a “unloving” manner, it is far from good moral standing.

    You have made your case and expressed your views just as CB Scott and others have done the same.

    I get it, most of the TULIP camp don’t acknowledge genuine repentance while those that consider TULIP as “heresy” see repentance. Maybe if Caner converted to Calvinism the argument would go in the opposite direction.

    Coincidence or not, much of the ugly Caner dispute has ignited another lopsided version of the ongoing religious partisanship between TULIP lovers and those that don’t embrace TULIP.

    • First, to call the Caner controversy a “diversion” is bogus. That a “Christian” college would select an unrepentant, public liar as it’s president is a moral and spiritual collapse. The salt has lost its savor. What’s it good for?

      Second, to suggest that Caner actually has made any repentance is nonsensical. What evidence is there for such a claim of repentance? Has he ever confessed his sin and said “I lied”? Has he apologized to those he lied to? He’s quoted as saying he has nothing to repent of. Is suing a Christian the fruit of repentance?

      The real division is between those who believe that repentance is necessary (as the Bible teaches) and those who really don’t care at all about Biblical moral standards and want a religion that’s all about fakery and good entertainment in the pulpit.

  9. Walter Schroedter says:

    The issue, in my opinion, has little if anything to do with tulip vs non-tulip. Rather, this is about character, integrity in ministry, the Lordship of Christ in the life of a believer, about protecting the body of Christ from being deceived and becoming a laughing stock (to Muslims). It is about setting a role model to students who are preparing for ministry in the body of Christ. In the final analysis it is an issue about the honor of Christ and his name. To argue for the truth in an unloving way does not honor Christ. But to be silent does not honor Christ either. Love rejoices with the truth.

  10. Mark says:


    I partially agree in that arguing in an unloving way doesn’t honor Christ. Silence is more honorable to Christ if being unloving is the path taken by adversaries who profess the Gospel.

    I believe the debate has become “unloving” and those involved have sinned.

    We don’t agree with this issue becoming partisan with those defending Caner not embracing Tulip and Caner’s most earnest critics embrace TULIP.

    In case you didn’t realize those who are embracing TULIP and those not embracing TULIP within the SBC, have been going through a rough time with each other, for quite awhile.

    Rather continuing to go viral the SBC Leaders and Preachers need to come together in a civilized manner and investigate, if they haven’t already done so.

  11. I think this is an excellent article and gets right to the heart of the passive Caner-defenders who tell us that we are hateful for bringing up Caner’s series of lies, that the loving thing to do is to ignore Caner, etc. This article rightly explains why not only is Emir doing what is really most hateful for his Ergun but also are the passive Caner enablers.

  12. Mark says:


    What Doctrine does Caner’s more vocal critics embrace and what Doctrine does Caner’s more vocal defenders embrace?

    Like I need to ask, do you embrace “TULIP”?

    This battle is a continuation of the “unloving” partisan “religious” battles that has been going on for too long, among Leaders, Preachers and Bloggers within and outside the SBC.

    • Mark,

      You’re trying to divert attention away from Caner’s career of lives and thus participating in the cover-up and thus engaging in dishonesty yourself.

      This is why the Caner controversy is crucial. Those who take the Bible’s standards of righteousness seriously and hate the lying tongue that the Lord and who want to be disciples of the Lord Jesus will oppose Caner’s career of lies. Those who don’t really care about those things, for whom it’s just a religious game, will dodge, as you have done.

      If you’re really a Christian, you need to ask yourself why you don’t care about the truth.

  13. Born4Battle says:

    If there ever was a time to look past docrtinal differences and openly call for repentance for sins openly and brazenly committed, this is it. I would agree that to bring up the TULIP is itself a diversion. Besides, if one were to discuss THAT debate, it goes back to Augustine & Pelagius, along with Luther & Erasmus a bit before Arminius & Calvin.

  14. Mark says:


    I’m not diverting anything.

    Addressing sin by sinning is what I’m addressing.

    There is nothing in my postings I have I ever considered not caring about the “truth”.

    I’m simply displaying this “Truth” of the very real connection of the on going feud between those that profess TULIP and those that don’t. Caner is a pawn.

    Caner (like all of us) will answer to God.

    We don’t agree. John I’m not bringing judgement on you nor have I personally criticized you.

    • Nonsense. You take a controversy that is all about a man who built a career on lies and you introduce a totally irrelevant theological discussion and then you make a false accusation that those who have addressed Caner’s sin do so by sinning. Show us. Where? According to what scripture?

      I haven’t see you express any out-rage at Caner’s lies, the cover-up of those lies, the selection of an unrepentant liar as the president of a “Christian” college. You’ve shown no concern for the truth but only an intention to divert attention away from it. You need to examine yourself.

  15. rhology says:

    This current mess about Caner, about his Mountain of Lies, has NOTHING WHATSOEVER TO DO WITH CALVINISM.

  16. Mark says:

    John, rhology

    I don’t condone any sin that Caner has done. I also don’t condone any “unloving” behavior of those caught up in this.

    John, where I question sinful behavior is those who profess the gospel, arguing this issue, that have acted more like adversaries that “Hate” each rather than brothers who “Love” each other. 1 Corinthians 13:13. (read the whole chapter)

    If Love exist among all those on opposite sides of this issue, it’s extremely difficult to detect because it is mostly the same group defending/criticizing Caner, involved in the “Hateful” and “Rude” sparring in the religious partisanship debates, going on for years.

    John, everybody is ignoring this “truth”. I’m sadden of it, because it exacerbates strife in the SBC.

    John, like I have suggested I haven’t personally criticized you or judged you and I like to keep it civilized.

    • I asked you for specific examples of those supposedly unloving actions by those calling for Caner’s exposure and repentance. You don’t give it. I don’t believe you can. I believe your interest here is for one purpose: divert attention from Caner’s lies.

      I’ve yet to see you admit that Caner has lied; you’ve falsely suggested that he offered something that could seriously be interpreted as repentance (for what, in your view, I don’t know since you won’t even admit that Caner has lied. ) You continually resort to diversion, show no interest in the truth, and therefore I suggest your espousal to some form of piety is a sham — even if you actually believe in this fake spirituality of accusing people of being “hateful” without any evidence, ignoring lies, trying to divert by bringing up extraneous theological debates. You seriously need to examine yourself about the sincerely of your faith.

  17. Neptune says:

    I’m going to go out on a limb with this one, but here it goes…….

    What we are witnessing with Ergun Caner and his camp, the 70’s/80’s Fundamentalists and their camp……AND…..
    the Charismatic movement that invaded the Pentecostal, Baptist, Methodist and Presbyterian Churches, is the spirit of witchcraft. There are manipulations, lies, diversions, idolatry, hatred and rebellion that has taken over most every denomination, to include the Catholic Church.

    Galatians 5: 19 – 21:

    19-Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,

    20-Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,

    21-Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

    According to the Greek New Testament translation of witchcraft, we’re looking at the word pharmakeia (idolatry and hatred).


    Even in the Fundamentalist camp, they operate on hatred, venom and even patriotic idolatry. They support and supported corrupt politicians; and, as Jerry Falwell went after the homosexual community with rank vigor; he, in turn, created a LGBT political group who has infiltrated all levels of government. Homosexuals are now voted into public office. Jerry Falwell went after them with a vengeance and they rebelled and look what we have today. We are inundated with the homosexual agenda.

    Merriam-Webster Dictionary further defines witchcraft:


    a : the use of sorcery or magic
    b : communication with the devil or with a familiar
    : an irresistible influence or fascination

    Most of the televangelists, cons and frauds that we see on “Christian Television” are operating under the spirit of witchcraft. They are soothsayers. They attempt to perform “magic” and hypnotize you with their gestures, their voice, their entertaining stories. the high and low pitches, the “promises of success and money” ……IF you do this or IF you do that.

    Listen to ANY of them. Watch their movements, their sounds, their words and their eyes. Look at Ergun Caner’s eyes. The eyes, as they say, are the window to the soul. Look at his eyes.

    When Caner stands before a crowd and lies repeatedly about his past, his affiliations, his family, his birthplace(s)…..and he has the audience laughing hysterically……..the audience is falling under the spell of witchcraft. They idolize the man who stands before them; consequently, they willfully “fall under his spell” and defend him until the bitter end.

    It’s the EXACT same thing that goes on with CULTS. Think Revered Sun Moon. Think Jim Jones. People have no discernment today. NONE. NADA. They are more than willing to drink the Kool-Aid. If people weren’t willing to drink the Kool-Aid, Obama would have NEVER been elected. If people weren’t willing to drink the Kool-Aid, Benny Hinn wouldn’t make close to $100 million in a given year. The audiences and congregations are “BEWITCHED” by these people.

    We need to realize what the spirit of witchcraft and idolatry has done to the modern church. That is why so many people have trouble staying on the narrow path and keep exiting off on the broad road that leads to destruction. People want to be massaged and placated – they DON’T want to hear the truth. Truth requires responsibility.

    So, just add Ergun Caner & his camp to the list of fraudulent so-called Evangelicals who prefer to massage their audience and make a quick buck than to tell the truth. It’s all a part of the New World Order that has been increasing for the last 30 years. It has reached his dirty tentacles into religion, politics, business and the entertainment industry, even the Gospel Music industry.

    The Caners of the world ALWAYS find the gullible, and there’s no shortage to go around.

  18. Patrick says:

    “I’m simply displaying this “Truth” of the very real connection of the on going feud between those that profess TULIP and those that don’t. Caner is a pawn.”

    Mark, I couldn’t disagree more. By claiming that “Caner is a pawn,” you almost seem to make him out to be a “victim” in this whole mess.

    Is there a theological disagreement taking place in the SBC? Of course! Do I disagree with Caner’s theology (and likewise, he with mine)? Of course! I would consider Caner’s theology semi-Pelagian (and I feel like that’s giving him the benefit of the doubt on a lot of unknowns surrounding his theology). However, the issue at hand doesn’t have anything to do with his theology. I would much prefer a theological debate (and wish Caner and White had followed through on their schedule debate years ago) to what we have here. One’s theological persuasion should play no role in this issue with Caner….this is merely a sin issue. Given your comments, Mark, I feel like if a child were to step forward in your church and say that they’ve been abused by your pastor, your initial reply to the child would be, “Do you affirm TULIP?” It doesn’t have anything to do with the discussion….NOT ONE THING! And not only that, to make Caner, the man who brought this all upon himself, out to be some victim is completely ridiculous and asinine.

  19. rhology says:

    I don’t agree about the “hate” and “rudeness”. And did you see my earlier comment here?

    There are those who are sinfully covering up sin, and their tone and wording may or may not be sinful.
    Then there are those who are with righteous desire for holiness and the repentance of sinful men are obeying the Scripture and trying to expose sin so it can be dealt with, repented of, and forgiven, and their tone and wording may or may not be sinful.

    There’s a huge difference between the two. If you think the tone and wording are sinful, simply bring your arguments and evidence forward, and if I, for example, have said things in a bad way, I will apologise and repent of it.
    However, don’t act like there are two sides of equal moral standing. That is not even close to the truth.

  20. Bennett Willis says:

    Mark states that “Caner will answer to God.” That is supposed to be a given for this group of people–something we all believe. Personally, I don’t think that this relieves you of being accountable to your “group.” There seem to be fewer and fewer unpaid defenders of Ergun Caner.

    Mark, did Caner lie?

    This question can be answered by either “Yes” or “No.” While I would find it hard to believe that an unpaid person with any integrity could answer yes, I suppose it is possible. But it is an easy question to answer and I ask Mark to answer it.

  21. Mark says:


    We don’t agree.

  22. Mark says:


    I’ll leave that up to you and CB Scott to work out. I’m unpaid by either side. I have stated I don’t condone any sin by Caner or anybody else.

    The points I’ve made are serious.

    Nobody has disputed my claim that the adversarial behavior toward each other debating this (and other religious partisanship issues) is “unloving”. If Love for one another exist, I fail to recognize it.

    • Mark,

      You dodged my direct request for an example and a scripture showing that that those calling for Caner’s exposure and repentance are wrong. You likewise dodged rhology’s similar request. You’ve dodged Bennet’s direct question for you to say whether you believe Caner has lied or not. Then you have the audacity to say that you don’t condone sin. You most certainly do. You won’t even call it sin but continue to spin.

      And I dispute your claim that adversarial behavior toward unrepentant liars pretending to be spiritual leaders is “unloving”? Have you ever read the Bible? Do you know what the prophets did? Have you ever read Matthew 23 or the book of Galatians?
      You’re judging this situation by a totally unBiblical, anti-Christian standard, one you’ve absorbed from a Old Boys’ Club, Old Time Religion that has nothing whatsoever to do with following the Lord Jesus — the same Lord Jesus who told us, explicitly, to be adversarial with sin, even to “tell it to the church” and ostracize the unrepentant like the Jews ostracized pagans and tax collectors — not make them college presidnets. You apparently have no idea what true Christianity is and your constant dodging of direct questions, attempts at diversions, and your refusal to call evil “evil”, are grounds for you to question your own basic integrity.

  23. rhology says:

    I dispute it, Mark.
    And you who can’t even admit the obvious, that Caner has lied a zillion times… why should anyone think much of your pontifications about not being able to see love?

  24. Mark says:


    I haven’t once disputed Caner’s record.

    You have an interesting point.

    What I think you are suggesting is whether or not “I” see evidence of Love being “believable” in the way SBC Leaders and Preachers treat each other, doesn’t really matter to you. Because why? Do you think it doesn’t have relevance?

    Further more I interpret that the concerns I’ve raised are not that important to you. You also seem suspicious or convinced that I’m siding with Caner, which I’m not and a proclamation I never made.

    • David C says:

      Rhology’s question still stands, and for good reason: Most people who are not on Caner’s side (like me) are plain and straightforward about it. We aren’t going to dance around the issue and parse words about it. To anyone on this side, to dance around the issue while attempting to participate in the discussion places you on Caner’s side. In this controversy, there is no real room for middle ground. It is firmly an either/or issue. Either Ergun lied, or he didn’t. He cannot half-lie. Nobody can half-support, not me, not you, nobody.

      The people firmly in Caner’s court have tried to shift the focus of the whole issue away from a man’s dishonesty, deceit, and fraud, and onto theological stance. It’s all part of the strategy of arguing from a position that you know is faulty: change the focus of the discussion onto something else. Trying to make someone else calling out sin itself sin does not erase the sin being called out. Sure, maybe JD or some other critic of Caner has sinned, and a call for their repentance would be right and just. But that does not wipe away the sin of Ergun Caner, and it never will.

      I don’t get a free pass on robbing a bank because one of the tellers shot me in the foot as I ran out the door.

      • JD Hall says:

        I’d be happy to repent if someone could enlighten me as to what command was broken. As for Dave Miller and a few others, they seem to think that not playing typical SBC politics is “sin.”

      • This is why I think the Caner controversy is so crucial, a litmus test of the spiritual health of the SBC, evangelicalism as a whole, and of every spiritual leader who knows about it: It is as black-and-white as you say; the evidence is enormous and undeniable; therefore, the question is really whether we share the Lord’s love of truth and hatred of a lying tongue or we don’t really care at all, we just want to retain the front of spirituality. Those are the real lines that Caner divides people along.

  25. rhology says:

    Saying “SBC leaders and preachers” is far too vague. You posted comments about it on THIS post for a reason, though, which makes me think that you think there is some relevance to the subject matter discussed here, and you were talking about how you don’t see love in the people who are trying to call the Caners to repent.

    What you seem to be missing is that the call to repent ITSELF is a sacrifice on our part, and is loving. We can do it in an unloving way or a loving way. I don’t see much that I’d call unloving among those who are calling on him to repent, actually. Maybe you do, but I can’t help but wonder if your view is contaminated by the faulty view that calls to repent are necessarily mean and unloving.

  26. Mark says:


    I’m being vague about SBC Leaders and Preachers. I’ve been slow to realize but no SBC Leader or Preacher want to be isolated being labeled as “unloving”.

    The toxic dialogue on the air waves, on twitter or on blogs are littered with Preachers insulting other Preachers causing them to verbally retaliate against each other.
    (I’m not witnessing Love when a Preacher is telling another Preacher to “grow up” after they antagonized one another attempting to force feed their views, not caring who their audience is)

    The intent may not to act “unlovingly” but I need to see stronger evidence of Love,

    Taking an unconcerned or retaliating approach of offering an Aggressive Verbal Rebuke toward someone in Cyber Space instead of privately, has become the normal pattern. I find it insulting and by the time the word “repent” comes out it has little meaning to the recipient.

    Now maybe to some it might considered healthy honest dialogue or constructive criticism but even then I haven’t seen too many people acknowledging my concerns, because nobody wants to be considered “unloving”.

    In truth, I don’t always feel the “love” toward someone who insulted my Godly, Loving and gentle spirited wife.

    • rhology says:

      I’m not witnessing Love when a Preacher is telling another Preacher to “grow up”

      It is loving to tell them that if the object of the rebuke DOES INDEED need to grow up.
      I really recommend you take another look at what love is, biblically speaking. It’s not all flowers and puppy dogs.

      The intent may not to act “unlovingly” but I need to see stronger evidence of Love

      I think you’re fault-finding and you showed up here to blunt another push to ask the Caners to repent.

      I find it insulting and by the time the word “repent” comes out it has little meaning to the recipient.

      Why? People in this debate know what “repent” means, by and large.
      Perhaps you find it difficult to think clearly when people have said things you don’t like. Fine. That’s not true of everyone.

      maybe to some it might considered healthy honest dialogue or constructive criticism

      Caner’s Mountain of Lies are indisputable. No “healthy honest dialogue” or constructive criticism need occur. What needs to occur is that they and their defenders need to repent.

      I don’t always feel the “love” toward someone who insulted my Godly, Loving and gentle spirited wife.

      And yet you’ve offered no evidence that insults have taken place. Rather, you have played the role of Tone Police, but you haven’t shown your badge, and you’ve offered no proof.

  27. Walter Schroedter says:

    No doubt there are those in the tulip vs non-tulip camps who are using the Caner controversy as a means to ride a soap-box about their theological pet-peeves. I would classify that as emotionally and spiritually immature behavior. Behavior we may have engaged in once upon a time as well. But to take these examples of immaturity and make this the main issue here is allowing evil to ride right up through the middle. Using the Caner issue to promote personal agendas and theological vendettas does not mean that there is not a problem here. The behavior of Ergun Caner is a problem that needs to be addressed, in the Spirit of Christ. No doubt the Spirit of Christ is a Spirit of love – would the Spirit of God do something unloving? But God’s love can also be tough. Anyone who has experienced God’s discipline for their sins know that this is so. God’s love can be extremely tough! God’s discipline gets us to focus on what we need to focus on – it gets to the heart of the issue. While God is perfectly capable of dealing with Ergun Caner on his own, he also uses human agents. Followers of Christ share the Spirit of Truth’s concern for the truth. Can we not say that to be silent in the presence of a sinning brother is grieving the Spirit, just as speaking without a Spirit of love to a sinning brother is? For the sake of Christ and his church, somebody needs to pick up the ball here!

  28. Bennett Willis says:

    I have no opinion about Ergun Caner except that he erred by editing his life to meet what he saw as a “need” in the SBC. He profited from that editing significantly too. I don’t disagree with Ergun. I am well beneath his radar. I will never hear him speak in person. My personal preference would be for him to “put his head down and get to work on the problems he was hired to solve.” But I do disagree with his supporters who attack the “bearer of the news” and make excuses (or ignore) the “news” itself.

    And I definitely do not have any Calvinist leanings–though I can see how some could decide that was the way to believe. I find the seeming preponderance of Calvinist critics in the Caner affair to be embarrassing.

  29. Mark says:

    Walter, Bennett,

    It’s the same bunch that are openly verbally abusing each other for a long time. (not caring who their audience is)

    I find it difficult for any Christian to find acceptable of the exchanges on twitter and on blogs, taken place right now.

    Taking a matter of fact and emotionless approach of an Aggressive Verbal Cyber Rebuke is the new norm with SBC Preachers and that is what I take issue of.

    If you want to see repentance from someone confront them privately instead of humiliating them

    • David C says:

      I tried the whole “Privately-confront-Ergun-Caner” thing. All it got me was a pleasant man who turned nasty as soon as he ascertained that I was not buying his “They’re all hypers and muslims hiding behind anonymity” spiel or his “Look who comes out in support of me, look Norm Geisler, John Ankerberg” defense. Simple truth, learned fast: Ergun Caner will be your best friend in the whole wide world, so long as you’re willing to accept what he spoon feeds you, never bring up repentance, and stroke his ego. When I tried to call him to repentance, despite taking great pains to be polite about it, he became angry and refused to continue the communication, claiming no need to repent for sins he hadn’t committed (incidentally, about half a year before he made the same remarks on twitter) and claiming that those exposing him were unsaved. (Funnily enough, hasn’t JD gotten a lot of flak for claiming Ergun is unregenerate?)

      Incidentally, one of the defenses he used in his communications with me was (Paraphrased) “Look at my brother. You think if I’m lying that he would let it stand?”

    • rhology says:

      If you want to see repentance from someone confront them privately instead of humiliating them

      1) He has been confronted privately many times, and has rejected those advances.
      2) His lies are public lies. He must repent publicly.
      3) The outside world sees the lies. THEY need to see Christians trying to police their own.

  30. Bennett Willis says:

    I have my own opinion about how the first conversation (about Ergun’s story) between the brothers must have gone–and I’ve commented on that in a few places. Now, they are both stuck with it.

    I always tell my students, “If you mess up, confess immediately.” This situation only adds to my conviction that is the right thing to do.

  31. Bennett Willis says:

    But both brothers have profited (socially and economically) from “the story.” Isn’t “President of a College” one of the highest status jobs on most of the lists? And “Author of a Good Selling Book” is another high status description.

    It is amazing that you can just “stonewall” it and continue to do well in some circles.

  32. Mark says:


    I don’t know Caner so in fairness to you or anybody who favors or disputes his testimony, I respectfully will not dispute your views.

    I dispute the Cyber war of words taking place that nobody here is willing to accept as getting out of hand. The toxic and unfriendly way opinions and claims are being exchanged by those that profess the Gospel is what I have a problem with.

    Most act unconcerned who their audience is.

    As for you disclosing that Caner exposed his critics as being unsaved the same thing is happening to him. Everybody seems to candidly make claims about one another, that in the end only our holy father in heaven knows our heart and whose really saved.

    The amount of passion that many of you have against Caner doesn’t trump poor judgement of words being exercised on twitter and blogs.

    • More dodging and diversions from you. Will you answer the question: ‘Did Caner lie?’?

      If you have no moral out-rage at Caner’s career of lies, if you can comment repeatedly and express no objection to nearly a decade of deceiving the church, then PLEASE stop pretending you have any moral objections at all. Stop this pseudo-pious spiel about how grieved you are at a lack of “love”. If you will not be grieved at what Caner has done to the church and the glory of God, at least have the integrity to admit that you’re morally paralyzed. Or be exposed as another fraud.

      Whatever you do, please don’t leave another superficially spiritual lament about “toxic” words when you won’t raise a peep against the career Caner built on false words. Frankly, your fake spirituality is disgusting.

  33. Walter Schroedter says:

    Incidentally, JD, I agree with the thrust of your article. Emir Caner is complicit in this affair.

  34. Walter Schroedter says:

    I would like to qualify my last statement about Emir – If he has publicly affirmed the same lies that his brother has spoken, or if he presently denies that his brother has spoken falsehoods, and/or if he has not personally and privately gone to his brother and asked him to cease from lying, he is complicit in this affair.

  35. Mark says:

    John ,

    I stated that I don’t know Caner.

    Your comments like others is the sort of thing I’m addressing. Oddly, it was the normal toxic dialogue and sparring within cyber space between supposed “men of God” that raised my awareness that Caner even existed.

    You appear to think bad behavior of others will “trump” any bad behavior that SBC Leaders and Preachers direct at each other on Twitter and Blogs like these.

    I’m not surprised that you wrote mean, hurtful and retaliatory things to me, a tactic you like to use in order to rid yourself (and divert) any responsibility for your “unloving” words that you have expressed toward others.

    • Again, you’re dodging and I find your fake spirituality disgusting. Do you refuse to comment on Hitler because you don’t know him either? You seem totally unaware that your refusal to express out-rage at what the Lord says He hates, behavior for which He says He will cast people into hell, is the opposite of being a disciple of Jesus and the opposite of being loving. You are a hypocrite for hatefully judging me, whom you don’t know, for showing you that your fake spirituality is anti-Christian. In your mind, truth is the enemy of love. That means you know neither truth nor love. You need to examine yourself as to whether you are really “in the faith” (2 Cor. 13:5). Then you need to repent of your false accusations to others for being unloving, for telling the truth. Whatever you do, drop the smug, condescending pseudo-spirituality that refuses to raise a moral objection to Caner’s career of lies while pompously pretending to be offended by those calling it out.

  36. Patrick says:

    “I stated that I don’t know Caner. ”

    It seems odd to me, Mark, that your defense of having no problem with Caner is that you “don’t know” him. Yet at the same time, you seem to express this “great” moral outrage at John and others, all the while, I’m assuming you don’t know them either.

  37. Walter Schroedter says:

    Your basic premise is, “Do not speak against another’s sin until you can do so in love”. I believe this is a biblical premise. So I commend you for this stance. But it seems to me that you equate “speaking in love” with “never inflict pain on someone else”. These two things are not identical.
    Suppose you see someone about to fall off a cliff, and the only way to rescue them from certain death is to forcefully grab them and yank them from danger. Is the pain that you cause in this ‘yanking’ unloving? Is not this painful interference in the other person’s life, part of the love you are showing them? Would you say, “I cannot rescue them because that would inflict pain on a part of their anatomy” , or “I need to wait until I can yank them to safety without pain”? Surely not. Speaking ‘in love’ does not equate to ‘speaking without causing pain’.
    The love is seen in the motive that abides in the rescuer’s heart – namely to save the person from danger/death. Can an intervention that “sounds loving” but does not have the other person’s best interest in mind be a loving intervention? On the other hand, cannot a messy sounding intervention, that has the other person’s best interest in mind be truly loving? And unless there are manifestly sinful things being said, is not God the only one who can judge motives???

  38. Mark says:

    John, Walter, Patrick,

    I haven’t defended Caner nor have I suggested your assertions about Caner are false. I don’t know anything about him.

    It was the normal Cyber-Space sparring that has been going on for awhile by SBC Preachers that raise my awareness that Caner even existed.
    Most of the cyber space dialogue (whatever topic) between you guys is consistently unfriendly and to your audiences we view the back and forth insults as “unloving”.

    I don’t understand why bringing this to your attention is a stumbling block.

    Go on twitter look at the exchanges, would any of you say to Jesus what you are saying to each other. The personal exchanges themselves take the attention away from topics that you are so passionate about.

    John, the more personal things you have said to me, is hurtful. You seem to think I’m giving Caner a pass by my objection to the way Preachers spar in cyber space, then you retaliate referring me personally as “disgusting” for expressing my frustrations with the way you treat and talk to each other, like the audience doesn’t exist or have eye’s or ears.

    You haven’t denied that to an audience the sparring among Preachers look like adversaries that “hate” each other rather than brothers who “love” each other. Your only response is diversion.

    I like what Jared Moore did the other day. Rather than spar with JD on twitter he chose to discuss an objection in private.

    • Again, it’s nothing but diversions and self-righteous criticism from you.

      Bottom line: if you are not morally out-raged at Ergun Caner’s career of lies, if you care so little that you won’t bother to look into it or say anything against it, then your claim to a moral objection to anything else is likely just self-serving.

      You apparently have no concept of true Christianity.

  39. I found this about Emir. It raises the stakes about Emir’s complicity in his brother’s lies. Yes, it’s not as overt as Ergun’s, but it appears that Emir played the game soem too:
    Emir joins in on the deception: http://www.wadeburleson.org/2010/04/experts-in-islam-is-emir-caner_26.html

  40. Mark says:


    Again, you continue insulting while deflecting my concerns. I don’t think there is anything more I can say to you.

    I don’t have a problem researching Caner’s record and when I draw my conclusions whether I agree with your assertions or not I hope that I treat those that I may disagree with better than you treat those that disagree with your “Methodology”.

    John, I give you a lot of credit, you have exposed your personality in order to get the “W”. I can concede.

    You seem to minimize my concern as a non-existent problem between SBC Preachers acting like adversaries who “hate” each rather than brothers who “love” each other.

    If you haven’t embraced 1 Corinthians 13:13, it is a good passage to understand one of the true concepts of Christianity.

    • David C says:

      If you haven’t researched the details of the Caner scandal (a process that could take less than an hour of listening to his old testimonies, followed by a peek at the BPC press release), then why are you even participating in discussion here?

      Invoking 1 Corinthians 13:13 is cute and all, but it’s not the whole story. Check out verse 6. Love loves TRUTH.

      Sometimes love isn’t nice. You don’t open the door of your friend’s room, see them injecting poison in their body for pleasure, then just apologize and shut the door. Love obligates you to act, to pull them out of and away from a destructive path. To the friend, as well as those who don’t know (willingly or ignorantly) or don’t care about their addiction, your intervention may seem harsh, even cruel. But the intervention is more loving than sitting back and doing nothing.

    • Again, just more disingenuous diversions from you. Let it sink in: IF YOU ARE MORALLY OUTRAGED BY CANER, YOU HAVE NO MORALITY.
      “Love rejoices in the truth”. (1 Corinthians 13:6). You apparently rejoice in covering it up.

  41. Mark says:

    David C.

    Verse 6 is a good passage.

    I never suggested doing nothing as an alternative to addressing your concerns.

    I think tough dialogue is possible without being antagonistic or in some cases unloving. When I pointed out flaws in some Methodologies of addressing the Caner scandal, (as well as other issues) this bunch didn’t receive “tough love” very well. 1 Corinthians 13:6. instead they retaliated against me.

    What you seem to suggest is unhealthy sparring of Preachers acting like adversaries who “hate” each other rather than brothers that “love” each other “Trumps” the Caner scandal.
    Christians who personally attack each other Christians on Twitter or on Blogs in an “unloving way” seem to forget they have an audience

    Whenever I challenged “Methodologies” that by appearance lacks love, there is a “Yea but,,, do you know what Caner did?” mentality diverting my point.
    (Same kind of excuses my kids use to give when they were 5)

    Then you have those that would rather retaliate against me for pointing out flaws in their Methodology instead of acknowledging that tough dialogue is possible without being antagonistic or in some cases unloving.

    You have a growing cyber audience that is witnessing unhealthy sparring among those that profess the Gospel.

    You guys seem intelligent enough to understand this stuff but choose to ignore it

  42. Mark says:

    Interesting question, physically we are all descendants of Adam.

    You must have been following. Not sure if you value my opinion that both Caner supporters and critics need to raise the bar when communicating their differences.

    Looking on twitter the other day, I didn’t care about a statement someone said to you.

  43. Mark says:


    There are no winners when the Twitter Cyber discussions becomes toxic and the Verbiage turns into off topic labeling, among those that profess the Gospel, , , , , Just losers.

    Being part of today’s (2/16/14) audience the only thing I can offer is Proverbs 15:1
    “A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger”.


  44. Mark says:


    You must be speed reading through the concerns I’ve raised. I simply don’t agree with the way you guys treat each other after you sort through your differences.

    It’s possible to have tough dialogue, staying on topic without getting personal.

    Caner critics and defenders who claim to profess the gospel, need to raise the bar when they communicate their differences, especially in front of their cyber audiences.

    When Christians exceed the boundaries of scripture when exposing their credible concerns, it effects their testimony.

    Every fundamental Baptist Preacher I know, wouldn’t be able to identify Christianity after watching bloggers antagonize each other on twitter.

    Bad behavior doesn’t trump bad behavior.

    The way you communicate to me has taught me to appreciate Proverbs 15:1 even further.


    • rhology says:

      I simply don’t agree with the way you guys treat each other after you sort through your differences.

      You mean because we…post about our disagreements…online?

      Hey, isn’t that what you’re doing right now?
      Think, man.

  45. Mark says:


    Tough dialogue and disagreements are possible without insulting or personally attacking those you disagree with.

    Think, man.

  1. May 30, 2014

    […] cover up his own sin. He pretends to speak Arabic and instead just spouts gibberish in public. He acts with hatred toward his own brother. He thus has grievously wounded many evangelistic outreaches to Muslims, who watch with disgust as […]

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