Monday, July 28, 2008

RICHARD ABANES: Driven to an hypocritical purpose?

I'm usually not one to speak about people I don't know anything about and I can honestly say that I don't know anything about Richard Abanes. But I'm going to make an exception in the present case based on the threat of legal action that a "brother" has made against one of my friends, Pastor Ken Silva.

I have recently been made aware of the fact that Mr. Abanes coerced Pastor Silva's website hosting company (ipowerweb.net) to shut down his web/blog site at Apprising.org.

Under the guise of "defamation/libel" and a "Terms of Service" violation, and simply because Pastor Silva disagrees Biblically with Mr. Abanes on numerous issues and because Pastor Silva wrote about such topics on his Apprising Ministries blog, Mr. Abanes threatened legal suit against ipowerweb.net unless they immediately "remove(d)this particular article from (their) servers, and notify Ken Silva to cease and desist the posting similar articles".

It seems that Pastor Silva's article entitled "A PASTOR’S ASSESSMENT OF RICHARD ABANES" was not viewed favorably by Mr. Abanes and instead of rolling up his sleeves and continuing the charge into the discussion and debate at hand, Mr. Abanes decided to take the easy and cowardly path of attempting to forcefully shut down the discussion that offended him. In his e-mail to ipowerweb.net, Mr. Abanes called for the hosting company to forcibly have Pastor Silva clean up the offending information from the Apprising Ministries website, citing his "public reputation". He claimed that his reputation was at stake and he stated that he wanted the offending article removed since his reputation "is of paramount importance to (his) livelihood and career".

I can understand how Mr. Abanes feels, and I'm sure Pastor Silva would also agree. Preachers, teachers, and bloggers (like Ken Silva) and websites and blogs (like Apprising.com) which attempt to bring unbiblical teaching and teachers into the light of Biblical Truth are constantly and consistently attacked in the blogosphere... and "defamation" with comments that hurt (if not pointedly libelous and potentially damaging to book sales) is the daily course for those who choose to stand for Biblical Truth in a post-modern world "driven" by an unbiblical "purpose".

BUT what is our response? Should we seek legal means of shutting the mouths of those who do not agree with our views, doctrines, or beliefs? No. The debate only clarifies Truth! A stirring debate between two parties in disagreement is consistently the formula that brings Truth to the top of the pot of the truth-and-error goulash.

On the other hand, it actually seems that Richard Abanes is more concerned with his "livelihood and career" (book sales etc.?) than if his views (or those of his buddy, Rick Warren) are aligned with the Truth of the Word of God. Pastor Silva is lovingly bringing what he views as Pastor Warren's and Mr. Abanes' Biblical error into the light. A concerned Berean's response would have been to debate Pastor Silva utilizing the Bible while prayerfully seeking God's help in revealing to him where he may be incorrect doctrinally.

Kind of hypocritical since Mr. Abanes himself has written books dealing with the error of the DaVinci Code and Mormonism. So it seems that, at least in those arenas, he desires to clarify truth for his readers, but when it comes to his own affiliation with Rick Warren and his erronious and ecumenical Purpose Driven drivel, he refuses to concede to the Word of God. Has he been driven to this hypocritical purpose by a fear of "loss of revenue", or simply because he truly believes what and who he defends, regardless of what the scriptures say?

Jesus called the Pharisees a guilty "brood of vipers"! Were they vipers? YES! Otherwise Jesus was a liar!

In Matthew 23:31-33 Jesus said; "Therefore you are witnesses against yourselves that you are sons of those who murdered the prophets. Fill up, then, the measure of your fathers' guilt. Serpents, brood of vipers! How can you escape the condemnation of hell?"

Would the Pharisee courts have considered Jesus' words libelous? Sure, because the courts did not agree with the Truth. Were Jesus' words truthful? Without a doubt!!

Jesus also called the Pharisees hypocrites. Was the Savior guilty of "defamation"? I guess so. He was defaming those who saw themselves as "perfect" keepers of the Law.

Matthew 23:1-5 says; "Then Jesus spoke to the multitudes and to His disciples, saying: "The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat. Therefore whatever they tell you to observe, that observe and do, but do not do according to their works; for they say, and do not do. For they bind heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers. But all their works they do to be seen by men."

Those hypocritical Pharisees who called themselves "Men of God" desperately wanted to shut Jesus up. But instead of just desiring to "shut down His website", the religious leaders plotted to kill Jesus. Their very reaction to the Truth of His words was anger, hate and vengence.

I'm not going to make a judgment call on whether or not Mr. Abanes is afraid of the Truth since I know nothing about him. I also won't go so far as to say that his response to "a Pastor's assesment" of him was angry, hateful, or vengeful. But I will say that I can plainly see by his actions that his attitude and response toward my friend Ken Silva's comments were the response of a Pharisee who claims to desire truth then does all he can to shut down those who seek to actively proclaim Truth.

The Word of God was the basis for Pastor Silva's so-called "attack" on Mr. Abanes' views, teachings and alignments with the Purpose Driven movement and the other-gospel-preaching Rick Warren.

Thankfully, men like Ken Silva who love the Truth will never back down, and will never be silenced by threat of legal action, violence or even death because they KNOW the Truth which has set them free. One can't un-know truth! So one who knows the Truth can NEVER back down from declaring Truth from God's Word!

Thankfully, there are always alternate ways, venues, and forums (as well as hosting providers) through which Pastor Silva and the rest of us will continue to proclaim the Truth until we are with Him.

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7 comments:

terriergal said...

Mr. Abanes decided to take the easy and cowardly path...of attempting to forcefully shut down the discussion that offended him.

No surprise there. Abanes has been reading "Transitioning" By Dan Southerland, I'll bet~! (the one with the glowing endorsement by Rick Warren at the front, and which promotes such machiavellian power plays).

April Allen said...

Thank you for the excellent article in defense of Pastor Silva. I pray all these happenings will open the eyes of Christians to the Truth, and what can happen when when people don't want the Truth to be told. As I tell Pator Ken, keep the armor on and the sword polished! You'll need it also as you stand for Truth.

http://FilesFromToni.blogspot.com said...

Another cat and dog fight is yet taking place with the usual suspects often referred to as "discernment" ministries, some of whom I have spoken of in my article "Gift of Discernment or Gossip" on my blog. Somewhere in between "he said, she said, tit for tat" lies the truth. This certainly does nothing to further the Gospel of Christ, and puts all believers in a bad light everywhere. The big winner here is satan and his demons and non believers, who must be having a great laugh over this one.


To witness the strife and discord Ken Silva and Ingrid (and their supporters have involved themselves in, "all in the name of "discernment" for Christ, by not doing the right thing by taking the offensive material from his website down,go to Richard Abanes site here http://richardabanes.wordpress.com/2008/07/26/more-arguments-ingrid-schlueter-speaks/#comment-270 and read the nasty, mean spirited remarks from Ken Silva's supporters and then read the remarks from Richard Abanes. How godly is this? Wouldn't it just have been better for Ken Silva of Apprising Ministries, who claims he is a pastor, to swollow his pride, take on the humility of Christ and the Apostle Paul, and take the offensive material down and be in compliance w/the Lord's Word?

I will quote a few scriptures concerning quarreling and causing strife among Christians, which are very pertinent to what is happening here:

Galatians 5:19-21
Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

Proverbs 10:12
Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers all offenses.

2 Timothy 2:23-25
Have nothing to do with foolish, ignorant controversies; you know they breed quarrels. And the Lord's servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth.

Ken Silva started this entire controversy, strife and division among other Christians in my honest opinion when he could have prevented it all, made an attempt to assassinate the character of Richard Abanes, whom I don't even know and choose to have his site taken down rather than swollow his pride and apologize by taking the offensive material down; and is now playing the role of a persecuted martyr. He tried to assassinate the character of Ray Comfort because he disagreed w/him. Ken Silva is not God Almighty and people do not have to answer to him. When are these people who call themselves discernment ministries, all in the name of Christ, going to learn that the public internet is not a forum where they cannot assassinate the character of someone they disagree with and will be held accountable? This makes all of Christianity look bad. Disagree fine. Point out errors using the Bible fine. But to assassinate another's character as these two voices in particular attempt to do is just plain wrong and unbiblical. I urge all to read the remarks on Mr. Abanes blog to gain more insight and truth of what actually happened here before just hearing one side of the story. Like I said, I don't even know Mr. Abanes, and I am in no way endorsing any of his writings; but after reading the remarks from Ken Silva's followers, who are supposedly Christian people, I certainly could never defend Ken Silva and his cohorts.

And to keep this controversy brewing, Ken Silva, rather the putting it behind him and moving forward, has started it all over again on his "new site" even against the wise biblical counsel from the above scriptures. Is this the type of pastor you would have teach your children and family?

Richard Abanes said...

TERR: Mr. Abanes decided to take the easy and cowardly path...of attempting to forcefully shut down the discussion that offended him.

RA: I DID NOT request that Silva's website be taken down. I have in my possession an email from IPOWER telling me very clearly that when they are alerted to an ALLEGED infraction of their TOS agreement by a client, they "investigate promptly" and then they "take appropriate action."

Well, they apparently did "investigate promptly" and subsequently took what they deemed to be "take appropriate action."

What this means is that Ken Silva actually had violated the TOS agreement he had entered with his ISP. I simply called this fact to IPOWER's attention—and that is not against the Bible.

Ken's ISP gave him a clear and simple choice: a) remove the offending article; or b) have the website shut down. It was Silva who chose to deliberately have his website shut down by defiantly refusing to follow his ISP's TOS agreement, which they seemed to think he had violated after they received my notification.
________________________
TERR: Abanes has been reading "Transitioning" By Dan Southerland, I'll bet~!

RA: Never read it.
_______________________
TERR: which promotes such machiavellian power plays

RA: Goodness, gracious. Writing a simple complaint to an ISP is HARDLY a machiavellian power play. What is alarming to me is how no one seems to be raising a word of criticisms about even worse attempts to silence me that have been made by others, including Lighthouse Trails (see this article) and Warren critic Chris Rosebrough (see this article) .

RICHARD ABANES

Anonymous said...

Richard doesn't need to read Transitioning, the entire Purpose Driven model is a Machiavellian power play. Why replace biblical Christianity with a political faux-Christian branded franchise model to spread the gospel?

Maybe Obama and McCain will ask Rick.

jazz said...

Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness,,,,to work all uncleanness with Greediness.Eph4v19
take it back to saddleback

jazz said...

The cowardly way out is not really a way out at all but there is a lot of money to be made out of all this and deception pays well.
"Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.Ephesians 4v19"