Friday, May 4, 2012

Guest Poster: Twisting Scripture to Legitimize Lawsuit

My readers continue to provide excellent dialogue on the topic of the defamation lawsuit and whether the Bible condones lawsuits among Christians.  This one was worth a blog post.   Thank you, Anonymous!  

To new readers:  Chuck O'Neal and Beaverton Grace Bible Church filed a defamation lawsuit against 5 people (3 mothers and 2 young adults) citing "defamatory" phrases taken off of public Google reviews, DexKnows reviews, blog posts/comments.  I am one of the 5 named in the lawsuit. 

From Chuck O'Neal's Feb.25, 2012 Google Review (this is strange in itself, as this is a place to "review" BGBC, but I digress...)

DEFAMATION IS A CRIME: Pastor Chuck O' Neal, his wife, his children, and Beaverton Grace Bible Church as a whole, have suffered JulieAnne's hateful lying slander for well over three years. After seeking counsel from a pastor on staff with Grace Community Church (under Pastor John MacArthur) and reading him several excerpts from JulieAnne's endless defamation, he recommended that we FILE A LAWSUIT in an appeal to Caesar as the Apostle Paul did when falsely accused of crimes against God and the state. The lawsuit has been filed in the Washington County courthouse.

"in an appeal to Caesar as the Apostle Paul did when falsely accused of crimes against God and the state."

This refers to Acts 25:11 but one needs to read the entire chapter to get the context.   I have scoured the text and several commentaries to find any correlation between what Paul was saying and having the right to sue another Christian. just isn't there. As is common with Chuck's teachings this is scripture twisting.  Go study this out. The clear teaching on lawsuits is in 1 Corinthians 6, "Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unrighteous, and not before saints?...Now therefore, it is already an utter failure for you that you go to law against one another. Why do you not rather accept wrong? Why do you not rather let yourselves be cheated?..."

We must carefully check everything that is taught as the Bereans did.

Ephesians 5:11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.

"Often, of course, open rebuke is necessary.  Silent testimony will only go so far.  Failure to speak out against and to practically oppose evil things is a failure to obey God. Believers are to expose them in whatever legitimate, biblical ways are necessary. Love that does not openly expose and oppose sin is not biblical love. Love not only "does not act unbecomingly" itself but it "does not rejoice in unrighteousness" wherever it might be found (1 Cor.13:5-6). Our Lord said, "If your brother sins, go and reprove him in private...If he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you...If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church"(Matt.18:15-17). This is the responsibility of every Christian (1Tim.5:1,20;2 Tim.4:2;Titus1:13;2:15)" MacArthur Ephesians commentary, pg. 212

These steps were followed. Chuck would not listen. This blog is a legitimate way for the truth to be told; darkness brought into the light, if you will.


  1. I find it interesting that the John MacArthur 'Grace Community church' reference is no longer on his 'google'~things that make you go hmmmmm....
    It has been requested that Chuck meet with local pastors and some of those he names on his suit, yet he refuses. Interestingly goes to southern California pastor for advice, but certainly doesn't have both sides represented...abuse of authority? If there is nothing to hide, why does he remove parts of his review, refuses to meet locally with pastors who could put this all to rest? You go ahead and fill in the blanks, just saying, not judging.

    1. You are exactly correct. Thankfully, I had saved a screen shot of that original review (another clear example of damage control - why did he remove that?).

      You are also right - he went to Grace Community during the Shepherd's Conference asked for counsel and we were not able to be a part of that meeting.

      I see no effort on his part to resolve this in a Christ-like manner according to Biblical principles.

  2. I am reading this, stumbled on to it. My name is Rudolf Werner, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Absolutely not a christian nor any other religion for that matter.
    In my view everybody has the right to express doubts about any institution. A right to free speech is embedded in the first amendment. Also the right of free exercise of religion is in it. So, somebody has the right to join a religion faction while another person has the right to criticise that religious institute. Furthermore the first amendment prohibits the making of any Law to protect any religion. In my opinion there can never be any legal action against anybody criticising a religious institute.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. sorry I really should have said I am Megan from Australia, and found this blog today because news of the court proceedings was in our local online paper. I have always found in amazing how people find themselves in these difficult religious situations. How faith can make you believe some people good and worthy and others not (there for you should avoid them) I believe my self to be christian, in the sense that I try to lead a good and loving life, I teach my children to respect and honor all life, and to offer help and assistance to any who need it. And of course not to harm any one on purpose. I don't belong to a church, and don't feel the need to. I love God, and know that what he expects of me is to help and not harm. All that said I have been reading through this blog, and feel deeply for the situation you and your family found your selves in, and congratulate you on finding a way out and a way to heal your family! but why was the comment removed, or was it removed by the person who wrote it?

  4. I love your closing line "I will not be silenced." Most all were silent when over 11 million died in the Holocaust. (Population control by the hands of a few.) Those who spoke out were also silenced. Fear kept the majority silent. Look at countries around the world today where their people take to the streets in protest of governing bodies. They stand for truth. It only takes a spark to get a fire going. When one stands for truth, time shall reveal falsehoods. Jesus was but one man. He was questioned and condemned by church authority for speaking the truth. Yet, his truth still stands. The papacy down thru the ages, even today, has deceived the sheep. Yet, his truth still stands. We, the people, should question authority. Should authority have nothing to hide they will respond with forthcoming answers. Sending prayers of love and light.

    ps did not want to be anonymous but I do not have a URL

  5. It is heart breaking to hear stories of people like you who really want to truly serve our Almighty God but end up suffering because of a false preacher. Our Lord Jesus Christ commanded his followers is to "Love One Another." John 13:34-35 (NIV) 34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” and to treat each other as equals.(Matt. 23:8 TEV), encourage... and help one another. Do good...especially to those who belong to our family in the faith (Gal. 6:10); be kind, and compassionate to one another (Eph. 4:32); grudge not one against another (James 5:9, KJV); get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice (Eph. 4:31, NIV); and be reconciled at once if conflict arises (Matt. 5:23-26).

    These Biblical teachings are followed by true Christians, preached by true preachers within the true Church established by our Lord Jesus Christ.

    May our Almighty God strengthen you and your family and may He lead you to the right path. I believe you are one of the many people who are searching for the truth and the right way of serving our God.

    May God Bless you and your family :)

  6. It is common for people and organizations to threaten legal actions to silence their opposition. Be careful. Though you will most likely prevail in court, you may accrue significant legal expenses. I would encourage you to contact Peacemaker Ministries for help during this difficult time. (

    Blessings, David

  7. I don't give a hoot about religion in any form, but I do care about free speech. Here's to the courts throwing out this ridiculous lawsuit.

    It's people like the ones who run your former church that drove me away from Christianity and all religion. I've never been happier to be agnostic, and I will remain that way. Losing faith was like having an enormous weight taken off me.

    I raise my ice tea to you in salute! :)


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