Glenn Beck Says He Takes Full Responsibility for Misleading Ted Cruz Crowds Then Faults Huffington Post for Calling Him Out

No wonder Glenn Beck likes David Barton so much.
At recent Ted Cruz rallies, Glenn Beck told audiences he owns the copy of Don Quixote originally owned by George Washington and which was picked up by Washington the day he signed the Constitution. As it turns out, Beck’s copy of Don Quixote was given as a gift by Washington to Tobias Lear. That is not what he told audiences, and to HuffPo, Beck admitted the error. However, on his website, he chides Calderone and HuffPo as if they made the error. Let me unpack this.
First, in a January 30 HuffPo article, Calderone reported that Beck told a Cruz rally he owned the copy of Don Quixote purchased by George Washington the day he signed the Constitution.

Beck also described how Washington picked up a copy of Don Quixote on the day he signed the Constitution, before holding up what he claimed was Washington’s own copy. Beck joked that today, the action would be as extraordinary as signing the Constitution before taking a trip to Barnes & Noble.

About the copy of Don Quizote brandished by Beck, Calderone yesterday quoted Beck as saying:

He wrote two lines [in his diary] on the day of the signing of the Constitution,” Beck said of Washington during a Jan. 30 stop in Ames, Iowa.”First line: ‘Signed the Constitution today.’ Second line: ‘I pick up my copy of Don Quixote.’ This is his copy of Don Quixote that he picked up that day.

Watch Beck tell the same story at Morningstar Church in South Carolina (see below for another time when Beck related the same story):
[youtube]https://youtu.be/jjlYclfDqpI[/youtube]
Contradicting Beck, Calderone yesterday published a report demonstrating that the copy of Don Quixote Beck displayed was not the copy he said it was. The copy of Don Quixote secured by Washington the day he signed the Constitution is owned by Mount Vernon’s Washington library. The library also owns a Spanish language copy of Don Quixote.
In his speeches, Beck clearly identified his book as Washington’s copy which he picked up the day he signed the constitution. In a statement to HuffPo today, Beck acknowledged his false statement:

“The lesson that I take from Washington’s diary where he says ‘Signed the constitution. Bought Don Quixote’ is that we are never done in our service to God and Country,” Beck said. “I have incorrectly stated that my copy is the copy that Washington purchased the day he signed the Constitution. That version is one of the copies owned and housed in Mount Vernon. I take full responsibility for connecting my book (which is dated 1796) to the book Washington purchased that fateful day of September 17th, 1787. But make no mistake the copy in my possession is from the private library of George Washington.”

I don’t think Beck and I view taking “full responsibility” in the same manner. On Beck’s website, here is what his readers see:

Unlike Glenn, the Huffington Post is evidently not a student of history — nor fond of research, for that matter.
Rather than publish with journalistic integrity, HuffPo decided to throw caution to the wind and publish an unsubstantiated hit piece questioning the authenticity of a book Glenn owns and has taken along on the campaign trail. The book in question is George Washington’s volume of Don Quixote. The hit piece, titled “Mount Vernon Says It Owns George Washington’s Copy Of Don Quixote, Not Glenn Beck,” was published yesterday.

Beck’s article doesn’t provide the statement given to HuffPo. Beck tries to change the subject. Calderone questioned exactly what Beck claimed. Beck told audiences repeatedly that he had a book he didn’t have. Either Beck intentionally deceived the audiences or he is not the history buff he claims to be.
On his website and on his show, he doesn’t admit what he did to HuffPo and doesn’t take any responsibility for connecting his copy to the book picked up by Washington on the day he signed the Constitution.
When Ted Cruz’s former campaign communications director Rick Tyler falsely reported a story about Marco Rubio’s statements about the Bible, Tyler was fired by Cruz.  Will Cruz now demote Beck or remove him from the rallies?
More Instances Where Beck Connected His Copy to the Copy Held by Mount Vernon
It appears that Beck told Richard Dreyfuss the same or a similar story. Watch at the beginning of this clip.
[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7IFB8TfLVHc[/youtube]
In the description of the video with Dreyfuss, the story appears:

Published on Jan 31, 2016

Glenn Beck ran into actor Richard Dreyfuss by surprise backstage at a Ted Cruz rally over the weekend and had a chance to show the actor two of George Washington’s personal artifacts he was carrying with him in a briefcase. (Video: Josiah Ryan http://bit.ly/1Kj0iWo)

One was George Washington’s compass, which he received at age fourteen and carried with him for his entire life. The other was the first president’s copy of Don Quixote,
“A compass is used for exactness,” said Beck, later from the stage. “I’m here to support Ted Cruz because he is exact in everything he does. His word is his bond. He believes, as George Washington did that deeds not words.”
Beck said Washington went and purchased the copy of Don Quixote just hours after signing Constitution signaling that the responsibility of keeping the Constitution was now in the hands of the voters.
He joked it was the modern day equivalent of running to Barnes & Nobles.
“The response is always the same, especially for his compass — reverence and awe,” Beck said later on his Facebook, referring to his encounter with Dreyfuss.

Beck said yesterday that he sometimes said the copy of Don Quixote was the one Washington picked up the day he signed the Constitution and other times he didn’t say that.

GLENN: Jeez. If I need to drag around the documentation for everything — so when I was on the road and said, “This is George Washington’s.” And we went back and checked the tape. There were times that I said, this is the one that he got on that day, and that wasn’t the one he got on that day. He had three copies. So that wasn’t the one that he got on that day. But usually I said, “This was George Washington’s copy of Don Quixote.” And they’re questioning that this was George washington’s copy. And the only reason why they said that it wasn’t was because they went on record because people were calling Mount Vernon saying, “Glenn Beck is lying, isn’t he?” And they said, “No, we have George Washington’s copy of Don Quixote.” Yes, you have two of two them. He had three of them. I have the other one. But nobody cares to listen to that. And so it’s just sloppy journalism, at best.

If Beck has a video of a speech at a Cruz rally where he didn’t claim to have Washington’s Constitution Day copy of Don Quixote, he should post it.
In Aitken, South Carolina on February 15, Beck told the same story. Watch:

Here’s the same story at Ames, IA (at 7:00), a rally in SC (at 16:07) and then again in Nevada (start at 3:39)
[youtube]https://youtu.be/M4z4qNFRmRA?t=3m39s[/youtube]
As recently as February 21, Beck told a Nevada crowd that he had Washington’s Constitution signing day copy. Watch:

 

More Gospel for Asia Endorsements Missing

Once upon a time Prestonwood Baptist Church’s lead pastor Jack Graham endorsed K.P. Yohannan and Gospel for Asia. Now those endorsement pics and videos are missing. Other pastors who came to GFA via Graham (e.g., Rob Wilton) also are missing.
The current page is here.
As of about week ago, the bottom of the page looked like this:

From GFA.org/believerschurch
From GFA.org/believerschurch

Prestonwood Baptist Church has not responded to requests for comment about their current stance toward GFA.
 

Lifestyles of the Rich, Famous, and Hillsong

Coming up in medium to small, mostly middle class churches, I have not experienced a lot of the excess I write about. Gospel for Asia lets hundreds of millions draw interest in banks, pastors make half-a-million plus, million dollar book advances for Christian books, lavish lifestyles, jet planes, etc.
But then yesterday, a reader sent a link to the Instagram account of Esther Houston, wife (is she really also a pastor?) of New York City Hillsong church pastor Joel Houston. The description is so hip.

Esther Houston

Super Cali Swagalistic Sexy Hella Dopeness *CREATIVE DIRECTOR of stuff*-Maybe she’s born with it, maybe it’s caffeine- misswhoo.com

Whoo Who?
Warning: Some of this is NSFW

Your Daily Dose of David Barton: He's Got a School Named After Him and He Thinks Revolution Might Be Near

Barton Ecollege announcementEcclesia College, a Christian college in Arkansas, has created the David Barton School of Political Science. I wonder if my political scientist co-author on Getting Jefferson Right, Michael Coulter will want to move South.
Right Wing Watch brought the news to a grateful public.
The Ecclesia press release is here. And you can watch:
[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P0ha3wGLVZA[/youtube]
Now I am confused. Should we send our children to Ecclesia? Although it is a Christian college, Barton says half of young people going to Christian colleges will renounce their faith. Probably, we should just keep them home.
You Say You Want a Revolution?
Barton thinks one might be coming.  It is all in the word betrayal. Barton thinks psychologists got a thing about the word.

[Voters] feel betrayed. And when you look at betrayal and you look at what psychologists say that represents, that’s a scary term. It’s not like someone has just crossed me — betrayal is deep stuff.

Psychologists also use another word — projection — which just might be going on here. If Ted Cruz, the chosen one, doesn’t get the nomination, there might be some serious betrayal being felt in the Cruz camp which could lead to the R-word.
[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BGLGzRXY5Bw[/youtube]

Brief Note: Mark Driscoll on Becoming a Godly Man

Screen capture from Mars Hill Church video, 2014
Screen capture from Mars Hill Church video, 2014

Yesterday, Mark Driscoll spoke at Grace City Church, an Acts 29 church in Wenatchee, WA pastored by Josh McPherson. McPherson, who is Acts 29’s Network Coordinator for the Pacific Northwest, must really believe in Driscoll’s comeback because I suspect he is hearing some noise about it.
I have several emails in the in-box with links to the sermon, titled Becoming a Godly Man. None of the messages are positive.
For those coming late, Acts 29 removed Mars Hill Church from membership in 2014. That move accelerated the pace of Mars Hill’s decline.
 

Mega-Ministry Methods: David Jeremiah Sows the Wind and Reaps the Windfall

David Jeremiah, Screen capture from YouTube
David Jeremiah, Screen capture from YouTube

One of the key events that led to the demise of Mars Hill Church in 2014 was the revelation that the church leaders had used around $250,000 of church money to strategically buy a spot on the New York Times bestseller list for Mark and Grace Driscoll’s 2011 book Real Marriage. Manipulating bestseller lists became a debated topic for several months after it was learned that other leading Christian authors had also used Result Source to manipulate the bestseller list (e.g., Les & Leslie Parrott, and David Jeremiah). Articles in World, Christianity Today, and this blog examined the ethics of the matter.
Stepping into the debate at the time was a former Chief Financial Officer (2007-2009) of David Jeremiah’s Turning Point ministry, George Hale. In a January 14, 2015 post, Hale asserted that David Jeremiah used similar book buying practices as those made famous by Mars Hill Church and Mark Driscoll. Hale said he left Turning Point because he didn’t agree with the ethics of using ministry funds to manipulate the bestseller lists and enrich Jeremiah.
Turning Point is a large ministry that took in over $47 million in 2013 compared to nearly $40-million the year before. The last two years David Jeremiah’s non-profit has spent more than it made by around $3.2-million. However, the organization’s balance is strong with net assets of just over $9.5-million, as of June 2014.
At the time, Hale did not explain just how beneficial the arrangement was for Jeremiah. Now, Hale has disclosed that Jeremiah was able to purchase a $2-million ocean front condominium (San Diego Co., grant deed) in January 2010 not long after receiving a $3-million advance from Faith Words, a book publisher based in Nashville.
Hale said, “I never saw a contract between David Jeremiah and a publisher, but I did see an advance check made out to David for $3-million for a multi-book deal.” The books covered by the advance were The Coming Economic Armageddon (2010), I Never Thought I’d See The Day (2011), and God Loves You (2012). All three of these books made the New York Times bestseller list.
Despite the financial success of the books, Hale questioned the ethics of using donor money to create a fiction and personally benefit David Jeremiah. In 2015, Hale said in his public letter:

I began my employment at Turning Point during July 2007.   During August of 2007 Turning Point began promoting David Jeremiah’s Book “Captured by Grace” for pre-publication purchase for a donation of $25 or more.  I believe that approximately 100,000 books were pre-purchased (I could be wrong on this number but I think it is close) for an average donation of $25 during the months of August and September 2007.  When the book was released in October, Turning Point used the money donated for the book to purchase copies of the book from retail booksellers such as Amazon and Borders. Turning Point then sent the book to those who had donated and requested the book.  These purchases where timed to get the book listed as a “best-seller.”  It worked.
After this occurred, I voiced my concern as to the ethics of such action to David Jeremiah.  I was also concerned because Turning Point could have purchased the same books directly from the publisher for approximately $10 each instead of the $25 each paid to the book retailers.  David assured me that his agent and attorney, Sealy Yates had opined that the transactions were honest and ethical.
This same action was repeated during August, September and October 2008 with the same results. I again requested that Turning Point not repeat such transactions as I could not discern any benefit to Turning Point for purchasing the books at retail versus purchasing the books wholesale from the publisher.   I thought the transaction to be unethical.  David told me that he would take my advice under consideration.
During August 2009 David Jeremiah said that he wanted to promote his new book for pre-publication purchase but for a donation of any amount.  He had not yet made a decision as to the method that Turning Point would use to purchase the books to be sent to those who would request them.
During September 2009 David Jeremiah told me that he had decided to use the money received by Turning Point from those requesting his book to purchase the books at retail from booksellers and not purchase the books from the publisher at a lower amount.  He acknowledged that he was aware that this was disappointing to me.
Turning Point had received an average donation of $35 per book instead of $25 dollars during this 2009 campaign.  Therefore, if my memory is correct, Turning Point had received approximately $3.5 million dollars for the approximately 100,000 books pre-sold.  I thought that the added donation over and above the $25 purchase price of the book was meant to benefit Turning Point and was not to be used to purchase additional books at retail.  This did not happen. This thought, together with my prior opinion that the entire method was unethical and did not benefit Turning Point, led me to immediately resign my position with Turning Point which I did September 15, 2009.

Hale later told me that he was paid until early 2010 to allow a narrative to be floated that Hale retired instead of quitting abruptly over ethics concerns.
As a result of the book buying scheme, Turning Point’s membership in the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability was jeopardized. Hale told me, as did one other source in a position to know, that in early 2010, Turning Point was allowed to drop membership in the ECFA instead of being publicly removed over the bestseller list manipulation scheme. These tactics are not allowed for ECFA members and, according to Hale, Turning Point chose to drop out instead of modify their book business.
One consequence of losing ECFA membership was the loss of membership in the National Religious Broadcasters since members are required to either be members of ECFA or some comparable group. However, after years of non-membership, I have learned that Turning Point is a member again. It is unclear if this means Turning Point has renounced the book buying scheme or if the NRB made an exception. Neither organization has responded to my questions regarding Turning Point’s membership.
If the return of Turning Point to the NRB means that David Jeremiah has finally taken George Hale’s advice, that would be quite a story. I hope the usual big evangelical cone of silence doesn’t cover up the matter.
In any case, with the ongoing silence and secrecy over bestseller list buying, the debate over the ethics of it will continue.

George Marsden on The Jefferson Lies and Getting Jefferson Right

Thomas Kidd called George Marsden “the greatest historian of American religion of the past generation.” In The Jefferson Lies, Barton cited Marsden as an authority. In Marsden’s 2014 book titled The Twilight of the American Enlightenment: The 1950s and the Crisis of Liberal Belief, he described David Barton’s The Jefferson Lies as an effort to make Jefferson into an orthodox Christian. His footnote on Barton’s book leads to a description of Getting Jefferson Right. It is not a direct endorsement but it sounds good to me.  First, read what Marsden has to say about The Jefferson Lies:

Marsden Barton2

Marsden then leads readers to GJR in his footnote:
Marsden Fn 12

Cover of Getting Jefferson Right, used by permission
Cover of Getting Jefferson Right, used by permission

So much for the critics of Barton’s book being liberals.

Daily Beast: There a New Mark Driscoll Church Coming to Phoenix

Just a bit ago, Brandy Zadrozny posted an article at the Daily Beast that essentially summarizes the scandalous aspects of Mars Hill Church’s decline.
Probably the most controversial aspect of the article is Mark Demoss’ contention that Driscoll reached out to those he knew were at odds with him. That is going to inflame many former Mars Hill members since so many of them have not heard a word. I know a few, in particular, who reached out to Driscoll on multiple times without any response.
 

David Barton Accuses Marco Rubio of Having Too Many Gay Marriage Supporters

Pundits have been predicting last minute surprises in the South Carolina primary.
This looks like an effort by the Cruz campaign — sorry I meant Barton’s Cruz Super PAC — to cast doubts on Rubio. It certainly sounds like there is a lot of coordination between the Super PAC and the campaign (e.g, door knockers paid for by the Super PAC).
We also learn in this video that many Iowa pastors showed a Cruz video in church and urged people to vote for Cruz…just like Jesus exhorted us to do!
Near the end of this segment, Barton says that many of Rubio’s supporters and donors are establishment gay marriage supporters.
If personnel is policy, as Bryan Fischer said near the end of the clip, then folks concerned about dominionism, and the misuse of history and the constitution (Barton: the Constitution quotes the Bible verbatim) better watch out for Cruz.
(Apparently the embed feature isn’t working, so you can click through to Vimeo to watch; a brief clip of the gay marriage exchange is below.)
[vimeo]https://vimeo.com/156016340[/vimeo]

 
 
 

Hillsong Plans to Open Megachurch in Phoenix

Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=146699
Public Domain, Commons Wikipedia

Oh boy; didn’t Brian Houston get the memo about Mark Driscoll’s The Trinity Church?
Hillsong plans to go big in the valley.

Hillsong Church, a global church founded in Australia with 15 locations and over 100,000 in weekly attendance, announces the launch of its third U.S. congregation in the Phoenix, Arizona, area on Feb. 21, 2016. The Phoenix site will initially offer six Sunday worship experiences on three campuses with additional sites under consideration.
“After 15 years of serving as a large, vibrant, multisite church in the Phoenix metro area, and after much prayer and planning, we are excited to announce that we have become the 16th global campus of Hillsong Church,” said Hillsong Phoenix Lead Pastors Terry and Judith Crist.

I know Phoenix is huge and growing but there is only so much oxygen, right?