FWOTW: blessedhopebaptistchurch.net

We haven’t done one of these in a while but blessedhopebaptistchurch.net definitely makes the cut. When your bulletin lists the “missionary of the week” as Hephzibah House you know you’re in the presence of hardcore fundies. But when your site also advertises your pastor’s “life changing” books on The Seven Royal Laws of Courtship and Jesus’ Teenage Years, you know you’re in the presence of crazy hardcore fundy indeed.

Don’t miss the church History page with a list of all the church attendance records and the familiar story of how the current pastor inherited the job from his dad.

Thanks to Marie for passing this one along

312 thoughts on “FWOTW: blessedhopebaptistchurch.net”

    1. Yeah, you know you’re dealing with crazy when the pastor feels compelled to write his own books about a subject because nobody else in the world is fundamentalist enough to see it the same way he does.

        1. Eden, Wyoming.

          Lives up to its name — at the time my family passed through, the portable toilets at the city park were the only public restrooms within 50+ miles either way on a major road.

        1. I have been told I will never understand the Bible because of not shaving. ๐Ÿ™„

  1. Our church’s website just copied Hammond’s statement of faith word for word. Literally. It even mentioned FBCH by name. Lets not believe the Bible. Lets just see what Hammond says about it and that’s good enough for us!!!

    1. One of the books available from First Baptist Church is called “How we do it at First Baptist Church” and many pastors use this as their “Bible” to show them how to do it “right.” What arrogance! As if their way is the only way. That’s what their “pastor’s schools” are all about as well. ๐Ÿ˜ก

  2. I not that they go soul-winning multiple times a week but in the last 34 years they’ve only managed to grow the church by a little over 80 people.

    That’s not a very big ROI.

    1. Reminds me of our friend Brother Anderson in AZ. He claims thousands have been saved through his church in Tempe, yet they still meet in a store front.

      1. Last time I saw a picture of one of Anderson’s services, it looked like there were maybe 12 people there. I don’t judge churches by size, but you do have to wonder where those thousands of people are?

    2. I normally treat SFL as light humor and/or comfort from days when I was caught up in man-worship. But what you wrote in this comment, Darrell, is very sobering… I think of all the people in the last 34 years that they have manipulated into saying a prayer to get their ticket to heaven, and then rushing to give them assurance that they are going to heaven, no matter what. Such people may well rebuff all further attempts to witness to the truth with “I did that”… yet, with no real spiritual rebirth, they are walking along the broad road to hell… a very sobering thought, and one that took me aback this morning.

      1. @Guilt Ridden…

        I grew up in a church like this and we followed the same “soul winning” practices. It bothers me quite often. ๐Ÿ˜ฅ

  3. This guy is known as Just A Fragment on fundamentalforums.com and Frag on fundamentalforums.org. He is famous for using a sock sorting analogy as to why he’s against “inter-racial” marriage. You know, black socks with black socks and white socks with white socks.

    1. So that’s Just a Fragment? Yes, he is the ideal mix of ignorant, gullible, and hostile that makes for an ideal Fundamentalist preacher. His sock sorting analogy is just one example of his “thinking.”

    2. In the Vietnam War, “frag” was a verb meaning “to kill one’s superior officer” (because this was often done with a hand grenade, a.k.a. fragmentation bomb).

      Just sayin’.
      ๐Ÿ™„

    3. Links to a few of Jerry Ross’s more memorable quotes…There are so many to choose from! LOL!

      http://www.fundamentalforums.com/fighting-forum/67321-interracial-marrying-3.html#post1396270

      (Jerry Ross was answering this question, “The OP is about interracial marriage. Are you saying that interracial marriage is stupid?”)

      “I am saying that the following seriously limits your ability to have influence for Christ:

      Dressing up like BOZO the clown to attend church every Sunday.

      Sharing your home with 127 pet cats.

      Driving a car constructed from Kleenex boxes and a lawn mower engine.

      Wearing one red sock and one purple sock to the office each day….

      And ANYTHING we do that would limit that is WRONG…

      So, if a young man is called into evangelism, and he decides to also enter into an interracial marriage — WILL THIS SERIOUSLY LIMIT THE OPPORTUNITIES HE WILL HAVE TO CARRY OUT HIS MINISTRY.

      You don’t have to agree with “why” it does, you simply have to see that it does.”

      http://www.fundamentalforums.com/fighting-forum/67321-interracial-marrying-4.html#post1396325

      “I am not a racist, I am a realist. Simple facts. Defend it all you want, but there is still a LARGE portion of the country that you will not be able to minister in if you marry outside your race. Period.

      Many of you (who have been effectively brainwashed by our PC society) want to cast stones at those who still believe that it is wisest, best, sensible, proper, and common sense to marry someone of your own race. But it is — if you want to make the utmost impact for Jesus Christ. Why turn off so many before they can even hear your message?

      It is easier to accuse those who disagree with interracial marriages of being a bunch of backwoods rednecks than it is to simply listen to that still small voice inside of you that still says “Something wrong with that” when you see a white/black, Asian, Hispanic, Eskimo, etc. couple.

      Just go home and sort socks. As you do, it will all begin to start making sense….”

      (In response to another pastor:)

      http://www.fundamentalforums.com/fighting-forum/67321-interracial-marrying-6.html#post1396448

      “Do you actually preach that it is wrong for someone to have a difference of opinion than you when it comes to this subject? Do you actually preach that it is a SIN to stand against interracial marriage.

      And what verses is it that you use???”

      1. http://www.fundamentalforums.com/fighting-forum/67321-interracial-marrying-10.html

        “It is my opinion, but it is based in the desire to see everyone maximize their full potential for the Lord.

        Why do something that is going to cause limits to your impact.

        Here is an experiment:

        Choose a soul winning partner of another gender/race near your age. Throw 10 darts at a map of America. Go to a small town close to that dart. Go door to door soul winning for 3 hours. As you do introduce your partner as your spouse. Watch carefully the reaction of those who you try to then witness too.

        Now, same towns, different streets, take another s/w partner — opposite gender, same race near your age.

        Then be honest with what you see. And then tell me why anyone who is saved and wants to maximize their effectiveness for Christ’s kingdom would purposely choose to enter into a interracial marriage.”

        1. (In response to a post where Jerry Ross is shown a graph indicating that a majority of Americans are not against inter-racial dating:)

          http://www.fundamentalforums.com/fighting-forum/67321-interracial-marrying-16.html#post1397663

          “Thank you for sharing. The graph is telling. Wonder how many other things that once were considered unnatural could be plotted on that same graph as now acceptable.

          The majority of our culture now embraces it. 60 years ago they didn’t.

          Hope that makes you feel better.”

      2. “It is easier to accuse those who disagree with interracial marriages of being a bunch of backwoods rednecks …”

        I would never do that. That would be an unfair characterization of backwoods rednecks.

        1. Yep. thanks, gary. most of us dont keer who you mary, jist so yue happy and dont go beetin er up.

      3. Wait, what?

        Interracial marriage is wrong because it “…seriously limits your ability to have influence for Christ”?

        Because insisting on the KJV, women never wearing pants, courtship, and banging on peoples’ doors with a sales pitch *doesn’t* interfere with your ability to have influence for Christ?

        Eh? ๐Ÿ˜

        1. Win…great point…what she said.
          How ever you want to put it, ya done good!

        1. Ignorant idiots. There are only two “races” in the Bible. The saved and the unsaved. The only instruction is to not marry an unsaved person. Period. The end.

    4. And Jerry Ross also considers women wearing pants abominations in the eyes of God and calls it cross-dressing.

      Yes, he really is THAT ignorant:

      http://www.fundamentalforums.com/fighting-forum/50860-cross-dressing-gods-top-ten-abominations-list-still-want-risk.html

      Post #20
      “Now folks, back to the question. Do you really want to risk standing before God and answering for starting most days of your life committing an abomination to Him — I mean before you even ate your Captain Crunch???”

      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      On the subject of culottes:

      Regular culottes aren’t good enough – “Skirt-like Culottes” are required.

      http://www.fundamentalforums.com/fighting-forum/50860-cross-dressing-gods-top-ten-abominations-list-still-want-risk-9.html#post1079598

      “Properly designed coulottes are very feminine. Most of what is called coulottes are nothing more than wide legged pants, and thus not appropriate.”

    5. The sock-sorting analogy is equally an argument for (exclusively) same-sex marriage. You wouldn’t wear one crew sock with one dress sock, any more than you would wear one white sock with one black sock, would you? So, when it comes to marriage, keep men with men and women with women, hay-men?

    1. I noticed the assistant pastor has not mastered the Holy Scowl as yet. He’ll develop that soul-winning nonsmile before long! “IF you’re happy and you know it then your face will surely show it.”

    1. Well, let’s see … are there more than 500 Fundamentalists?
      … And, of course, some of them have more than one site each …
      So yes, there are more than 500 in the “Top 500.”

  4. I’m curious about the pastor who served there for only two and a half years. Shortly after he left, they had their founding pastor come back to take the church.

    (And, BTW, why do “Adult Choir” and “Teen Choir” sound OK but “Children Choir” sounds weird? The word children just HAS to be made possessive but the others don’t for some reason.)

    1. Should be childrens choir or childrens’ choir I guess. Adult is singular, teen is singular but children is plural. But you don’t say adults’ choir or teens’ choir so is childrens’ choir correct? Should it be child choir or kid choir? Is there an English teacher amongst us? ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. Maybe that’s it: adult and teen are singular. To be parallel, it should then be Child Choir. That sounds funny. I’d stick with Children’s Choir.

        (The apostrophe only goes after the s if the plural is formed with s like “puppies’ food”.)

  5. I suppose that book for girls “Stay in the castle” teaches them to stay home and wait for some knight in shining armor to come sweep them off their feet. And how can they have a book entitled “The teenage years of Jesus Christ” when the Bible says nothing of His life between the ages of 12 and 30?

    Some of their “soul winning” opportunities were at local Burger Kings and Dairy Queens. Does this mean they go into these places and preach or stand outside of them and preach? Not clear on this. ๐Ÿ˜•

      1. I think his advice to Lidia not to fall in love with the neighborhood boy was wise, but the imagery in the story saddens me.

        God did NOT call us to hide in a castle like the princess in the story: “For many months, at night, she looked out her bedroom window, past the village and its sounds to the Highway above, watching and dreaming of the one who would someday come.” In the story, the girl was lonely and bored; the only answer was WAIT.

        But God has told us to GO. We are to be on MISSION for Christ. This can be the most exciting thing in the world. Sure, the princess could still wait for her prince, but she could have been learning medicine to treat the sick in her village or SOMETHING useful instead of just waiting and dreaming.

        1. A fundy family just gave my younger brother this book as a high-school graduation present. They have 4 teenage girls. I’m still decoding the layers of implied meaning. ๐Ÿ™„

        2. His story puts forward this mindset that a single person’s one and only purpose is getting ready to get married. That’s it. Heaven forbid anyone should even consider that they might remain single and content.

      2. I didn’t think I had ever heard of this guy, but after re-reading that story, I’m pretty sure I must have read it before – or something extremely similar.

    1. I’m going to quote here everything the Bible says about Jesus’ teenage years. I’ll go even farther; I’ll quote everything we know about what he did between ages 12 and 30:

      .

      .

      .

      There, I did it. I hope you found that edifying. At least I saved you the price of the book.

      1. Wait a minute. There it is. I see it now. Look at what Jesus said when he was 17. I now know that rock-n-roll is wrong and attendance for Wednesday night service IS mandatory.
        Quick, find me an altar.

        Thanks BG ๐Ÿ˜†

    2. I had some “spiritual leaders” at Fundy U who highly recommended “Stay in the Castle” to me while I was going through relationship issues. They also pressed me to read “I Kissed Dating Goodbye.” I never read either book,but from what they told me, “Stay in the Castle” is all about this princess who was told to stay in the castle and wait for Prince Charming, but instead wanders around out in the village and finds inferior romantic interests, bringing much grief and woe upon herself. Her crime, as near as I can tell, was that she was independent in seeking romance instead of just letting the menfolk decide for her.

    1. I wish they’d just say conservative or traditional music, but, no, they have to be presumptuous and judgmental and passive-aggressive.

    2. the term “God Honoring Music” denotes a moral and biblical Stand. Using the term “traditional” would have the connotation that the Lord doesn’t draw a difference between right and wrong or good and bad in the realm of music. It’s a wonderful term for those who seek to please the Lord. However to those who would seek their own pleasure instead of His,i could see how use of the term would induce guilt. DANTE ๐Ÿ˜

      1. So your contention (and I suppose Blessed Hope Baptist’s as well) is that some styles of music are God-honoring? And that choosing a musical style is a moral decision? I can see where certain aspects of music could be seen as not God-honoring; these aspects would have to be lyrical or titular. Naming a piece blasphemously or using lyrics which are contrary to Christian faith and practice are extreme examples of music which is undeniably NOT God-honoring. I suppose that one could state that music which strikes the congregation as not “God-honoring” is therefore not acceptable, from some sort of “weaker brother” argument – for example, if the congregation associates Bach’s “Toccata and Fugue in D Minor” with horror movies. But that doesn’t make either the music or the performance not “God-honoring” in and of itself. That’s a question of the performer’s heart and intention. To imply that there is “good music” and “bad music,” by suggesting that the Lord is only pleased by certain types of music seems, well, indefensible. Particularly from any Biblical texts.

    3. It’s easy to use the term “God honoring” when it is honoring to the god of one’s imagination.

      It is god honoring when it’s music that the person or the group agrees their god would be honored with. When one uses the term “God Honoring Music” then they have put (their) god in a box which have determined. Therefore, anything outside this box is not honoring to their god. It’s like having one’s own little religious Happy Meal with a spiritual action figure that you can control.

  6. This particular church has a thriving bus ministry. I’ve heard that they go as far as 40 miles or so in all directions.

    I’ll leave it to someone else to point out the obvious scriptural reference that goes with this fact. ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

  7. We used to hand out “Stay in the Castle” and teach the principle in our teen youth groups. I always thought Ross was a big name fundy but seems he isn’t as well known as I thought. I don’t think I was ever hard core fundy but I guess if we used this guys books we must have been teetering on the edge. But his book Teenage Years of Christ was also in our list of recommendations as well.

    1. We also carried his books. I can remember reading “Stay in the Castle” when I was a young teenage girl. It was a beautiful story, but I always thought that I would have gone crazy with boredom if I were that girl. I agree with PW, we need to be going and doing for Jesus, not sitting and helplessly waiting for the prince.

      1. How does she expect her knight in shining armor to find her if she’s hiding in the castle? She has to get out sometime so he can see her. Just hiding in the castle will not bring Mr. Knight to her. Unless she’s on the computer joining dating sites. :mrgreen:

        1. Yeah! As I recall my “castle/princess” stories, the princess has a better chance of finding her knight in shining armor if she’s outside the castle getting scorched by a dragon. And on another mythical note: being locked away in the castle didn’t prove to work for Danae quite like her Daddy the king hoped.

      1. I didn’t know that the Williams’ belief of beating babies until they are adults was so pervasive in the IFB until I read your stores here at SFL. I thought that view was more isolated to Ron & Patti Williams.

        Hell House needs to be closed.

  8. “He met his future wife, Sheryl, while in college and God has since blessed them with three daughters.”

    Wait – so Sheryl is his future wife, ie they are not married yet, but since meeting they have had three daughters??? ๐Ÿ˜ˆ

  9. From the web-site. “Wilfred Baptist Church and Blessed Hope Baptist Church voted unanimously to merge together”

    Baptist churches merging? Usually Baptist churches multiply by dividing.

      1. Or if both churches are too small to afford the rent/mortgage and upkeep on separate buildings. Happened to two SBC churches down in my neck of the wood. They merged, changed the church’s name, but they’re still so small they’re renting out the sanctuary to a Hispanic liturgical church (probably Catholic). They meet in the gym and the Hispanic church meets in the sanctuary.

  10. I just love how in 1993 some of their holy attendance records went missing. We will never know who got saved that year as a result. ๐Ÿ™

    1. Apparently the Pastor is an IT expert too. Wonder what else he thinks he’s an expert on? lol

      I think it’s also ironic that they list Palm software on that page…which hasn’t been really relevant for, oh, the past 5-10 years.

  11. But wait! There’s more! Stay in the Castle is available as a play!

    “This play requires 5 in the cast. It was written so that any size youth group or church group could easily put it on. It is a 30 minute play that includes 6 scripts.”

    I guess groups of fewer than five don’t count.

  12. Blabster Ross this Sunday: “Well, Bless God, many many lost souls clicked on our website this week, over 2,000 hits. Surely, as powerful as our website is, many of them called upon the name of Jesus and asked Him into their hearts. Aren’t I great? Errr…. Isn’t God great?”

    1. Wonder how many “internet salvations” he will count in their totals, LOL!

      But do salvations count if their socks don’t match?

  13. I simply do not understand how anyone who sends money to the Heph House can claim to be a freedom loving, American…much less a christian. The crimes and testimonies from this place are astonishing. How are they still able to collect money and collect girls? My last church at least had the sense to drop them and publicize their offenses. That was almost 4 years ago! Who is so willingly ignorant? “Bro. Ron” always creeped me out!

    1. Christian Fundamentalism has always needed a place to dump off its sexually abused kids and other unwanted children. Places like Hephzibah House fulfill that role so that Fundy families can keep living the “picture perfect” life that makes them better than their neighbors.

        1. This makes me physically ill. 20/20 needs to go ape on this guy too!

      1. It sure looks like the Spruce Goose. A plane that only flew one test hop and was petty much a bust is a strange choice for the “Get Your Life Off The Ground” series.

        1. So it seems that fundies aren’t the only ones who don’t think through all of the implications of their illustrations. ๐Ÿ˜€

  14. I have heard this man “preach” before. The former pastor Stan Keifer, his wife likes to stalk people on FB and report back to FBCH on their waywardness. Craziness at its finest.

    1. Sounds like Bonnie Garraway, a/k/a Joan of Arc on the FFF.com, except she is a Vineyard/Windsor Hills Baptist Church/Oklahoma Bible College groupie. She would dig up dirt on former students who badmouthed the church or college and blackmail them with exposure if they didn’t stop. Eventually, some of the pastors told her to settle down, it made their church look bad, as well as Garraway’s “mission ministry” Reseeding America.

  15. I was impressed by the Stay in the Castle story how similar the princess’s life as a pregnant village wife was to her life in the Castle: lonely and monotonous. The moral seems to be, “Don’t go have fun in the village, because then you’ll know what you’re missing.”

    And I liked how her father just let her go get herself in trouble without saying anything to her. Fit right in with my former image of God, who sat and waited, arms folded, to see if I was going to mess things up for myself. And then when I did, He’d trot out all the blessings I could have had, and have them parade before me on a white horse.

    AND, another thing, notice that when she was in the Castle, she had a life of luxury and ease. It was only when she disobeyed that she ended up poor and struggling. Get it? Get the moral?

    It actually a captivating story. But a very sad way to have to live.

  16. This pastor, Jerry Ross, is very condescending…I can only imagine how horrible he must be to the people in his church:

    In response to why he is so condescending, Jerry Ross replied:

    http://www.fundamentalforums.com/fighting-forum/50860-cross-dressing-gods-top-ten-abominations-list-still-want-risk-15.html#post1080592

    “I express my point of view as you do. I think I have been very kind and gracious about it.

    Considering I am talking to a bunch of pagans who first thing every morning commit an abomination to my Lord.

    Now have a sweet and blessed day.”

  17. I’m new here. Been quietly observing as a guest for a while. Can I say that the name of the bus, “Friendly Freddy,” is slightly creepy? Just makes me think of those ice cream trucks that play annoying music as they drive through the neighborhood…and yes, we still have them in Oklahoma. Can’t say I’d want my child to ride the “Friendly Freddy” bus to church. ๐Ÿ™„

    1. ๐Ÿ˜†
      you must be *this* tall to ride this ride . . . and you have to bring your own “protection”. Friendly Freddy likes to share, but there are some things that are better off not shared. If you know what I mean, kiddies.

    1. I’ve actually never even heard of it so even though the title sounds like a parody, my curiosity is up. So I second that motion brother Phil. :mrgreen:

  18. What a sad, sad group of people judging by this comment from the site: “There is not much the world can offer that the Christian can feel comfortable doing…”
    Wow. So, this magnificent God supposedly created this world for his creation to enjoy, and these idiots are confined to their church hanging around with other sad faced people complaining about how evil the world is.

  19. Oh my goodness ๐Ÿ˜‰ there is no stopping you people….have you no shame!!? You make me Want to go to one of these Hyle’s types….they sound like kind sheep ….and you like Wolves!! I’m curious… Does your kind actually have a salvation testimony or just an (election recognition..per se) because a powerful proof of salvation is a Love for the Brethren. I’ve worked around all stripes of born again Christians and it was neat get to know them …. The Pentecostals for example….some of the sweetest folks I ever met though off doctrinally generally a good testimony. The Reformed crowd however was another story. I had to explain to the unsaved folk as to why they misbehaved so…..arrogance, mean spirit, and low moral standards seem to be their calling card…..come on gentlemen…..I can’t believe no one has ever challenged you before about your conduct on this blog. Dante

    1. actually, people have criticized the conduct on this website . . .quite frequently. Try to wrap your mind around the fact that peoples’ criticism doesn’t necessarily matter to everyone on this site.

  20. I pastored in that area for a little over nine years. I’m quite familiar with the church and its people. That area of Indiana is probably the most racist place I have ever lived, and that is after growing up in Texas, and living in Detroit for a bit.

    I know Jerry a little bit, but not much. We have chatted here and there. I know that we were considered outcasts due to our lack of modest dress, bible versions, etc. I also know that they were very big on on how the students of their school dressed outside of school. You could be expelled if you wore pants during the summer. It is a strange ungodly little group.

    1. ah, dante, so your expertise is Eisegesis. That is a handy skill in the IFB, having the ability to read into something what isn’t there.

      Makes sermon prep so much easier doesn’t it?

  21. Hey Don, I suggest that perhaps you should read garry’s comment over a few times then see what you think. I believe Honesty is of utmost importance when challenging each other.

    1. Dante – can you explain what is in Garry’s post that supports the website featured in this post? I have read it multiple times and his comment does not shine well on Blessed Hope.

    2. I did, and that’s why I made the comment on your reply, given all the arroganceโ€ฆ.mean spiritedness โ€ฆ.. and low moral standardsโ€ฆ that you read into his posting. You do know what Eisegesis is don’t you? I mean you practice it quite a bit around here, I just want to make sure you understand what it is you are doing.

  22. Don’t quite understand where you are coming from Scorpio. The point being garry’s attack(as well as the other reformed stripes) on this blog towards anything that smacks of bible believing or (non refers). He most clearly states that his church folks were rejected by they’re church folks because of “his” immodesty. His statement “ungodly little group” was hardly edifying, and I dare say is idicative of a rejection response ie….. They reject me…. So I reject them.

  23. Believe it or not Scorpio, this is an important question on moral discernment, that avitar or picture of yours that precedes your name on the post…. Is it from the motion picture “airplane” ๐Ÿ™

    1. No I wouldn’t agree. I can discern things with the best of ’em.

      For example, I am discerning that you are either a poe or a troll.

      If you’re a troll, be warned, I only have so much food.
      If a poe, well played.

  24. Ex from fundamentalism, I think your chosen “title” as well as your comment oozes with Bitterness ….. You ought to care what a true brother thinks of your conduct. If it’s truly not just an ax to grind, or a behavior justification, it may very well be of the Lord. ๐Ÿ’ก

    1. Just to give you folks some context here, Dante is a dyed-in-the-wool fundamentalist.

      He calls Clarence Sexton (pastor of Temple Baptist Church which runs Crown college) “an amazing speaker” and attends their Youth Congress.

      I point that out just to highlight that you can pretty much guess which slant he’s coming from.

    2. bitter? no . . . I was, literally, excommunicated from Fundy U, and it was perhaps the best thing that ever happened to me. It forced me to realize the truth about Fundamentalism-the truth that I had long been afraid to admit to myself.
      My chosen screen name is meant to highlight the irony of Fundy U’s actions: they criticize Catholics for their religious hierarchy and their legalism, and yet they set up their own elaborate hierarchies of control within their own institutions, to enforce their own legalism.
      I do care what “true brothers” think of my conduct. The problem is, the fundies pretty much told me that they don’t consider me a sister.
      By the way, the name “Dante” oozes with the evils of anti-establishment rebellion, not to mention Roman Catholicism. Have you ever read the Divine Comedy? Or am I over your head by about 9 levels of Inferno?
      Sorry, my irritation is coming out. I know this is harsh.

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