Oct 302012

Papa Chuck’s CCCM goon squad cuffs up former NBA player and CCCM giving-member Nick VanderLaan….for speaking out at a meeting featuring the controversial Ergun Caner. Photo courtesy of Ephesians511blog.blogspot.com.

Former NBA player Nick VanderLaan, a recent money-giving member of Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa, tells his story of being detained against his will and then arrested for speaking out at a meeting to question the presence of the controversial Ergun Caner.

I’ve spoken with Nick many times over this situation. I believe his version of events and was kept informed about the situation and the eventual dismissal of the charges by the prosecutor.

In my opinion, what Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa did was wrong. Very wrong. It is symptomatic of a cult-like culture that has taken root. Dissent is squashed. Ears are closed. Abuse continues…in many forms, including this situation in my opinion.

Nick shared the details with me months ago. Here’s what happened in a nutshell from my recollection of our conversations and Nick’s recounting of events:

He attended a special meeting at CCCM featuring Ergun Caner as the guest-speaker. Previous to the meeting, Nick expressed his concern to CCCM Leadership, believing he had the right and responsibility to do so as a giving member of the Church. His concerns were basically ignored.

At the meeting, Nick stood up to challenge Caner’s presence. He was non-violent and merely spoke out and spoke up. Calvary Chapel Leadership knew who he was. Nick and his family were known quantities, attended a trip to Israel with Chuck Smith, counseled with pastors there, dedicated their kid at the CCCM pulpit etc etc.

He was immediately surrounded and detained by the Calvary Chapel goon squad (my opinion, my description of the security guards and CC personnel based off of their subsequent actions).

The goon squad cuffed Nick up, took him to another part of the church, denied him bathroom and water and detained him against his will for a prolonged period of time.

Santa Ana police arrived later and arrested and charged Nick.

The ordeal took an expected toll on Nick and his family. The charges were eventually dropped by the District Attorney.

Adding insult to injury, Nick has tried many times to address the issue of both Caner and the detainment and subsequent arrest with Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa Leadership…with “no attorneys”…basically Nick wanted to follow Scripture and deal with this in a Matthew 18 manner. CCCM don’t play that. Attorney Janet Carter (same attorney Chuck Smith brought to our “meeting”) was sent a request, but the infamous CC Stone Wall is up once again.

Ephesians 5:11 blog documents the full story here (very thoroughly). See the arrest report, see the letters to Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa, hear Nick’s testimony:


 Posted by at 5:09 pm

  144 Responses to “Former NBA Player, Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa member, detained against his will for speaking out at meeting, arrested, case dismissed by prosecutor”

  1. This is awful to do to a person. I could see if he was violent or argumentative, but this type of stuff happens a lot more than people think. Old ladies that had given to the church for decades and decades then cuffed up charged with trespassing and booted out. I was told I was stalking and menacing and was a violent person that made others afraid. They did not mention that I was invited to come over, was thanked when I did and that I only visited three times in six months with a standing invitation. I learned my lesson on that one, I will not go over to another Christians house, even if invited, even in writing, even with witnesses. It is a line among many dozens I will not cross in the faith community, the second one almost on this level is I will not show any type of grief what so ever, even at a grief recovery class. It is just one an option. I also will not call them on the phone, keep my distance even at church to ensure I can’t have it used against me, because it will.

    The one thing I learned at church is terror fear and intimidation. I am not saying this always happens but one has to protect one’s self.

  2. wonder what would have happened if Nick had gotten to the church before the man began speaking. That seemed to be his intention. I can understand the church getting angry that he went in there yelling in front of everyone. It’;s not really an acceptable approach. But someone should have taken him aside, at least out of concern and spoken to him, not arrested him.
    You have to be very careful when you speak out in any situation.
    Does anyone now exactly what Oakland objected to?
    Why did it take almost a year to hear about this?

  3. PS. An interesting situation here because the law definitely had the upper hand in dealing with this. . Bringing the law into church may be safe to some degree but makes for conflict in this kind of situation.

  4. If more men were like Nick, church would be a safer place, in my opinion.

  5. To me this sounds a little “crazy”. I don’t think it’s ok to go in and disrupt a meeting because I feel its ok and have the right because I give money, etc. But I understand acting a little “crazy” there as that is how I felt inside from attending CCCM. The better thing imo if it was me would have been to question why I was involved with a group that is giving this “person” i dissaprove of a platform to speak. But it was hard to question things like that for me when I was in the thick of attending there. How disappointing I think it might be for Nick to find out CCCM is not the place he thought it was. It took me a long time to accept the true reality of CCCM and that I had to leave CCCM, to keep my “sanity”, since they turned out not to be what I had been led to believe. I had to accept that for me to stay there would have just hurt me more.

  6. Today I thought about how much grace our Lord has shown CC. They have been given so much time to repent and so many opportunities to do the right thing in so many different situations, but to no avail. This blog is like a symbol of God’s grace. With each passing day, new people come forward and say “I can relate to the cult-like, abusive experiences described here” and CC has the opportunity to come forward and say “We are sorry for this or that and we are ready to truly submit ourselves to God and to stop doing things that damage people and damage the world’s view of the Church”….But this is not what they have done. They have not chosen repentance.

    The spiritual indictment against CC becomes greater and greater as this repentance does not happen and as they continue to ignore the hurt and abused. But though we may be ignored by CC we are not ignored by God! I saw today with gratitude that I grew in my love for Jesus during my own ordeal with one part of the CC movement. That love was sustained by His peace that passes all understanding and supported by an unquenchable desire to study God’s Word and to learn everything possible about Him. I have never been more convinced than I am now, that God is full of mercy and grace and abounding in steadfast love, kindness, patience and goodness! :-) So thank you for that CC :-) In trying to crush the precious faith that the Holy Spirit placed inside of me, all you did was strengthen and confirm that nothing can destroy that faith and that nothing can separate me from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus! :-)

    God’s grace is amazing but He is also holy and just. His Word is so complete in its treatment of all things. Everything is in perfect balance. For instance in John 3 we hear about the awesomeness of God’s love for the world, but we also hear about the condemnation “that the light has come into the world but men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil”. Light has been shone into some of the darkness of CC but they have chosen not to acknowledge their evil deeds and chosen not to turn to the Light for Him to bring redemption to the mess. For those who think they are capable of extending more grace than God, truly consider the extent of God’s grace to CC. As a whole, this organization nationwide has a history of publically known and verifiable ungodly behaviors from leaders. Nationwide CC has seen a spectrum of unbiblical and scary things over the years and even as recently as this year: Everything ranging from pastors who were convicted for pedophilia, to lawsuits brought by their leaders against each other or against people hurt by leaders in the CC system.

    These are not questionable things. They are the types of things God has very definite opinions on and yet His grace has given CC time to repent and they have not. Even that should speak volumes to those who may not really understand what Jesus meant by “Judge not”. Our Lord, who said “Judge not” on the Mount in Matthew 7 (regarding hypocritical judgment), gave the Pharisees His righteous judgment of who they really were in Matthew 23. Then all of the apostles followed their Lord and Savior’s actions throughout their lives. In their Spirit-filled capacity they were able to point out sin with maturity….not because they were lacking in the grace of God but because they had the greatest possible respect for it.

    In Acts 5, Peter did not hesitate to ask Ananias and Sapphira why they had conspired to lie to the Holy Spirit and he did not question the Lord’s decision to end their lives. In Acts 8, Peter also did not hesitate to let Simon the sorcerer know that his “heart was not right in the sight of God” and that he should “repent”. In Acts 7, Stephen did not neglect to let his “brethren” know that they were “stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears” and that they “always resisted the Holy Spirit; as their fathers did”. In Acts 13, Paul did not neglect to let Elymas the sorcerer know that he was “full of all deceit and all fraud, “a son of the devil” and an “enemy of all righteousness who did not cease perverting the straight ways of the Lord” and Paul unflinchingly declared the Lord’s decision to blind the sorcerer.

    When John was given the Revelation of Jesus Christ, he did not leave out the messages to the seven churches (Revelation 2 and 3) even though 5 of the churches got some very condemning news. The beloved John was the one who warned the Church in his letters (1 John 4 and 5) to test the spirits and one of the primary tests is the presence of love. Review the article on this thread and ask yourselves “Where is the love?” If you do not believe this account use your search engines and find newspaper articles documenting many of the things brought up on this site and ask yourselves the same question.

    Children of God the name of our God is blasphemed because of some of the things that CC refuses to repent of. Don’t you see that? God’s grace should lead any Spirit-led branch of the Church to repentance but more and more time goes by and there is still not a move towards metanoya from the CC movement. Why is that?

    When will God’s true Church stand up and speak for Him and speak like He speaks? The wicked prowl on every side, when vileness is exalted among the sons of men (Psalm 12:8). When godly people come to this site and refuse to take the type of stand that the cloud of witnesses in the Bible took against things that offend the heart of God, pride and arrogance grows among people at CC who think that they are above questioning and above repentance. The Pharisees were convinced that they were the most righteous people alive, but God knew otherwise and let them know that He knew otherwise and told us to beware if their leaven. Their spiritual darkness was not new. It was an ancient darkness that extended as far back as the sin that was lurking at Cain’s door. Cain killed his brother because his deeds were evil and his brother Abel’s deeds were righteous. God had a specific way He wanted them to worship Him. That way was a picture of the blood that would be shed millennia later on the Cross. It was a symbol of the act of grace that only God could have performed for us. Cain rejected that way of prophetic grace and chose murder and a declaration of his own righteousness instead of obedience and repentance. God, full of grace, gave Cain protection in spite of his murder and yet God’s kindness did not lead Cain to repentance and Cain’s sons continued in the murderous ways of their father. His line was ultimately completely destroyed by the flood along with other wicked inhabitants of the earth but only after they had all received centuries of God’s grace. God is gracious but when we continue to receive His grace and yet refuse to repent what happens next?

    Hebrews 10:26-29 For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries. Anyone who has rejected Moses’ law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace?

    Bride of Christ, ask yourselves this question: “What effect does CC’s actions as outlined here have on the faith of many?” When I hear people say that they are afraid to go into a church because of CC, my heart grieves and not because of my own opinions or feelings but because the Church, the true Church, belongs to Jesus and is comprised of people who shine with His glory revealed through them. I know many of those people. They look like what the Word says Christians should look like. Don’t let the actions of the leadership of CC fool anyone into thinking that there isn’t a real Church out there worldwide that reflects the heart of God. Paul told us to examine ourselves to see if we are really in the faith or not and to make sure that Christ is in us (2 Corinthians 13:5). This is an opportunity for anyone reading to pause and do just that. Do you really have a saving faith in the Savior of the world? If not, this is an opportunity to call out to Him and seek Him with your whole heart. Paul tearfully revealed that there were men who were not genuine but were in fact enemies of the cross of Christ (Philippians 3). He wasn’t content to let men like Hymenaeus and Alexander continue in their sin (1 Timothy 1). He spoke up. Why is it so hard for us to do that in these times?

    I exhort everyone who calls Jesus Lord and comes to this site, to really dig into the Word. Read through the gospels and hear the scathing things Jesus said to the hypocritical religious leaders of His day. Then read through Acts and see how the disciples followed in the footsteps of their Master and had their share of scathing things to say to hypocrites. Then read through Paul’s letters and see that in Romans and Corinthians and Galatians, he most definitely did not hold back from speaking harsh truth and his idea of love was not a watered down version of it. There is a vast difference between “the fear of man” and love and grace. We all struggle with the fear of man and we all need to realize that we cannot possibly think that we have more love and grace than our Jesus. If He let Peter tell us that it is time “for judgment to begin at the house of God” (1 Peter 4), then who are we to say otherwise?

    So with this new thread and this new chance for CC to repent, I pray that children of God everywhere, who truly know what the Spirit and the Word say, would rise up and call CC to repentance and to reconciliation with God.

  7. I listened to the audio as he spoke up in the church about Mr. Caner I remember all the hubbub about this man pretending to be a “Jr jihadist” ™ . In my opinion it was a great schtick and he played it so well. So what’s the big deal? From how I understand it he fulfilled what is expected, he created controversy, was cool, and above all and I mean way way way above all top shelf number one, he generated income from my observation. Now Mr. VanderLaan was / is a man of integrity, faith, concern for souls and other such as I have come to understand nonsense but should be commended. Given enough time in the corporation I think he will learn to repent of those inconveniences. I know I have prayed often to but still fail, and I am ashamed of that.

    In my opinion Mr VanderLaan would be much happier and find less contention within the Church of Jesus Christ where biblical principles are followed. He is also in good company as the Apostle Paul stood up in the same way and was arrested and also vindicated. Paul like Jesus is not welcomed in the American Corporation but they have many followers who are trapped within the corporation. They were pushed out after a hostile takeover. No problem though because Jesus happens to be Lord of the universe so there will be a day of reckoning.

    Mr. Smith and CCCM this is my opinion Shame on You, oh and grow up.

  8. I can speak a bit about Ergun Caner. He presented himself and his brother as growing up in a militant Muslim family. James White presented the world with Caner’s lies through contradictions in his testimony as presented in at least two different cases. Then a number of circumstantial evidence about when Ergun moved to the US and how old he was when he converted. There was a number of things that at a minimum were embellished as he told his testimony.

    Ergun Caner was a Dean at Liberty University and a lot of pressure was put on the school to remove him. There was a committee that looked into the accusations and removed him from that position, but he retained a place at the school. Norman Geisler claimed following that investigation there were misstatements, but not anything crucial. Geisler argued for the legitimacy of Ergun Caner over and over again in spite of the evidence.

    Now for my speculation, Joseph Holden was a student of Norman Geisler’s and the president of Veritas Evangelical Seminary (VES), where Geisler is now professor. The conference was held by VES. Most of Geisler’s views were taught by Holden in systematic theology, apologetics and bibliology. I’m certain that if Geisler vouched for Caner, it was good enough for Holden.

    One side note, Joseph Holden is likely the smartest theologian in all of Calvary Chapel. As nuanced of thought as he was, there were times I heard doublespeak from him about certain issues. I attributed it to the fact that he needed job security at the time. I don’t know where he stands now, but I’d love to sit down and take him to coffee now that I’ve done grad work in Philosophy and spent a lot of time thinking and reading since I last took a class from him. I don’t let teachers get away with blatant contradictions and other issues, just because of the position.

  9. In my opinion Ergun Caner’s “sin” was not that he exaggerated, contrived and muddled “facts” that is SOP in the American Evangelical camp. Actually it is rewarded, as it should be, his failing in my opinion is that he crossed the line, and it was horrid what he did, he was caught and he messed up the apologetic. He slowed down the machine, that is reprehensible from my experience. That is what got them in trouble.

    I think back to Mike Warnke and Bob Lar$on, in my opinion it was them getting caught that was the sin, and that is a sin and I get that. From what I have observed the point that the “facts” presented by them were not accurate, which is irrelevant. Now Bob was able to recover and from what I have seen he has a new shtick and it is even more effective and my hats off to him with the “Charlies angel” exorcist squad , that is a great ploy. I stand in awe. In my opinion it is a bit tabloid and even shameless, which has no meaning and these exploits should be applauded. They generate income and we all agree that is number one, way up high on the list number one.

    These are “extreme” examples, well actually they are not Bob and Mike, in my opinion are small potatoes compared to the big players within in the game, and it is a game. You know back some 31 years ago I thought to just trust Jesus, after that many years in the industry I have repented of such nonsense.

  10. This just in a Rick Warren video for a purpose driven what ever. This video is shocking and the ODM’s are on it.


    For the parody challenged. This is a parody. Thank You.

  11. Incognedo – lol I remember believing CCCM was a “little country church on the edge of town” blah blah – I have repented of such nonsense too.

  12. Incognedo – that video — lol

  13. It seems that Ergun Caner invited response with his bold statement and VanderLaan too him up on his invite.

    That said – – – as I’ve been blogging about the Sovereign Grace lawsuit, sexual abuse in my own church situation, am familiar with the abuses at CC, don’t you all find it ironic how fast CC got police and outside civil authorities involved in this situation to get VanderLaan arrested? Yet when real abuse is occurring with children/spousal abuse, etc, they make the choice to take care of it in-house, never with the police. I find this to be total and blatant hypocrisy. When it benefits them, they call the police, when they want to cover up, it stays at church. Blech.

  14. Not knowing and hearing who Ergun Caner is but being concerned over Mr. VanderLann protest and arrest, I decided to find out more as initially in reading this post, I found myself feeling a bit enraged over CC lack of discernment and unwarranted actions against Mr. VanderLann. So calming down, taking a nap, drinking a cup of Joe then wading through the articles on Ergun Caner, I set forth and came up with the following to offer for others like myself who was in the dark and to assist in forming an opinion of what may be of importance to us, as Christians who, like Mr. VenderLann do seek to have the ability to speak out against those things that appear to be a threat to our faith.

    There are two issues here:

    1) Ergun Caner’s right to speak at CC during an apologetic conference.

    2) Nick VanerLann right to protest Mr. Caner’s presence in his church.

    Now according to Christianity today, John W. Kennedy [ posted 7/2/2010 10:41AM ]

    “John F. Ankerberg, who interviewed Caner for more than a dozen television programs, has posted on his website that he is disheartened by the attacks upon his friend’s integrity and character. Ankerberg said he believes Caner’s testimony is “completely true.” During the Liberty investigation, Ankerberg, citing copyright infringement, had several videos posted by critics pulled from YouTube.

    “Ergun and his brother, Emir, are men of God who have taken a valiant stand for the Lord, even costing them and their families their safety,” Ankerberg said. “For someone to attack Ergun’s selfless sacrifice, especially since they malign his character without any substantiation, is both unchristian and unbiblical.”

    Norman L. Geisler, distinguished professor of apologetics at Veritas Evangelical Seminary in Murrieta, California, says the investigation’s outcome vindicates Caner.

    “They exonerated him on everything except some misstatements on nothing that was crucial,” Geisler told CT on Wednesday. “No moral or doctrinal charges were established; no culpability was proven.””

    Roger Oakland offered to clarified the issue concerning Ergun Canor that Muslim and Christain seems to be in protest in a video:


    When going to this site, it is the 6th video down. Roger Oakland made this video to be seen by Dr. Geisler shortly before the Apologetic Conference was to be presented in CC.

    So it was somewhere between May – July 2010 that Mr. Caner was dismissed from his position at the University due to inaccuarcies of residence, but not to any issues concerning his theology. And it was somewhere between September – October 2011 that Roger Oakland made to video to address Norman Giesler regarding Mr. Caner’s inaccuracies of residence, because Veritas Apologetic was scheduled to hold an apologetic conferences at what I can surmised, several CC, including CCCM, with Ergun Caner being one of the speakers.

    As we know from the post there was an effort to protest Mr. Caner speaking in written form, but CC failed to respond to this concern from one, being Nick VanderLann, who was obviously a person who was quite faithful to CC in all the ways that a congregant would be when naming CCCM as his home church. When he heard that Mr. Caner was going to speak, he made an attempt to get there beforehand, as any “watchman” might do. But as providence would have it, he was late and arrived while Mr. Caner was speaking.

    Based on what was shared by the link provided on this post it’s my impression that in wanting to protect his church from harm, he spoke up to make his protest known. How many of us have wanted to do this same thing when hearing or even seeing something that was so wrong being done or being said that could harm another person? And in the moment, what did we day and what did we do? How did we handle it? And after all was said and done, did we question ourselves thinking, or wishing we had done this better?

    I think we can answer to the affirmative on this. Yet, this does not answer the response given to Mr. VanderLann as an obviously faithful supporting congregant who was known to Chuck Smith, as well as, to board members and other persons in the leadership, including security.

    What concerns me here is a couple of items.

    1) Respectfully addressing another in their protest to being a guest speaker.
    2) Respectfully addressing another brother or sister when protesting such a decision.
    3) Use of security that inflames the situation and using unwarranted restraints.
    4) CC lacking recourse for congregants to protest their concerns.
    5) CC failure to provide a platform for congregants to be watchman as God has called us to be, when any type of leaven may be brought into or is being permitted to exist in leadership or the general body of Christ.
    6) CCA being only a source for leadership and the issues Pastors have rather than an “association” that is also designed to enable congregants to seek recourse for their issues, complaints, problems, and needs as well.
    7) Glaring neglect by Chuch Smith to be transparent, humble, and available to a congregant who obviously sought to address this event in the light of Matthew 18.
    8) CC hiding behind legal attorney skirt tail to avoid being a Pastor, but rather than a CEO.

    Anyway, this is my take of the whole awful mess behind all of this. To Mr. VanderLann, your experience is very closely related to my own. I was not physically removed, but rather metaphorically physicallly removed and still have yet to meet with a CC pastor, as well. Am I still feeling enraged as I did when I first read of your experience—no, but I am thinking what hurt and dissolutionment you might be experiencing, thinking that somehow, they would respond more favorably to the letter you recently sent to them. I sincerely hope they, meaning the leadership, since Chuck Smith’s health has declined and the “new” CCA has been formed. It’s an awful thing having the very leadership you placed your life and the life of your family in to lead you into thinking they were able to be trusted to have your back when challenges presents itself that threaten the people that you love and the church and faith that you have committed to lay your own life down for in His Name, our God, Our Savior, and our Redeemer, His Name is Jesus.

    I think of all the saints gone before us and how they also step forward and I think of how they went so far as to losing their very lives in speaking out against the things that was and that could destroy the body of believers. And at the same time I think of the scriptures:

    John 16
    King James Version (KJV)

    16 These things have I spoken unto you, that ye should not be offended.

    2 They shall put you out of the synagogues: yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service.

    3 And these things will they do unto you, because they have not known the Father, nor me.

    And finally, I say to all who have bared witness to these things that ought not being concerning the CC leadership. May it be a trumphet for all to hear and to repent accordingly. We are not a company, a business, or a commodity. We are a church called by God to walk in obedience to him and to stand watch over those things that would leaven and corrupt our walk and our faith in Him and our relationship with one another. Like the prophets, Jesus, and the apostles and disciples gone before us, we too must speak the truth in season and out of season, and never compromise or cosign such evil and corrupt practices that enables the leadership to divide themselves while lording over us.

    1 Peter 4:12-19
    New International Version (NIV)

    Suffering for Being a Christian
    12 Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13 But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed. 14 If you are insulted because of the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you. 15 If you suffer, it should not be as a murderer or thief or any other kind of criminal, or even as a meddler. 16 However, if you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God that you bear that name. 17 For it is time for judgment to begin with God’s household; and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 And,

    “If it is hard for the righteous to be saved,
    what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?”[a]

    19 So then, those who suffer according to God’s will should commit themselves to their faithful Creator and continue to do good.

    Shalom, in Jesus

  15. Overly Concerned

    Thank you from the depth of my heart in taking the time to bring to mind those better and more true things which enables me to hold fast to in my faith and who I am in the Lord. Ever since I came to the Lord, and received the Holy Spirit, when something that is said or something that I witness with my own eyes is of the Lord, I experience this shiver that goes from the bottom of my toes to the very top of my head. It is as if every fiber of my being comes alive. Your words are straight from the Lord and as a person who has been gifted with discernment and knowledge, I feel duty bound to also affirm what you have shared. Again, thank you.

    Incognedo: LOL — you remind me of Screwtape.

    D.A. Armstrong: sounds like you found the same article I read. Didn’t know about Holden, interesting specualation. As for me, I am stuck at “not finding fault thologically with Caner. And is the reason the Muslims are upset with him due to exposing them or due to providing false information?

    Julie Anne

    I totally agree with what you stated. Reminds me of “straining at a knat” while ignoring rampant mental, emotionaly, spiritual, economic, and sexual abuses being perpetrated by so many, that I fear there are more wolves than sheep at times in the church.

    Lord, shine your Light upon us and place a hedge of protection around all that speak truth and stand in the crucible of such affliction wrought at the hands of those whom would silence them. Send your angels to lift us up in our the midst of our heartbreak so that we would gain strength and conviction to go forward no matter the cost. May we be people who place our hope in You to await Your words, “well done, good and faithful servants, enter in.”

  16. I read and follow the apologetics movement fairly closely, so I saw Ergun Caner’s stuff as it was coming out. I remember thinking to myself that many of the apologists who I know personally didn’t take any sides nor release any statements which I was disappointed with. Some had made some allusions to his situation in some lectures. One person made a passing comment about being an apologist means “you must be entirely truthful in your testimony and must be aware of the possibility of embellishment.”

    I’m glad to hear the rest of the story on this situation. I remember hearing about someone interrupting Caner’s speech at CCCM, but I never got the much after that.

  17. Alex, I have #14 hung up in moderator.

  18. I would like to remind everyone that the Ergun Caner issue has NOTHING to do with theology.

    If only it was theology.

    It has EVERYTHING to do with a guy that is trying to make unaware gullible audiences think certain things about him when the facts don’t line up with what he states.

    The evidence is overwhelming and it makes me wonder just how he is given any sort of a platform.

    The next article will provide plenty of evidence (hopefully) to convince everyone that it has NOTHING to do with THEOLOGY.

    I have Ergun in one clip stating his mother is a Sufi Muslim and another clip where he states his mother is a Wahhabi Muslim

    I have Ergun stating he was born in Istanbul, Turkey and Ergun stating he was born in Stockholm, Sweden.

    I have Ohio court documents that show Ergun being in America before 1971 while he states continually that he arrived in 1978.

    I have Ergun stating he arrived in America at the age of 14 when he arrived as a toddler.

    The MATH doesn’t add up.

    Ergun Caner represents the apostasy in the cjurch.

    Ergun Caner reveals that the apostate church are NOT being Bereans and just trusting men that claim to be Christians.

    Jesus told us we would KNOW THEM by their fruit.

    The fruit of the Holy Spirit is found in Ephesians 5:9 – “ALL TRUTH”

    The apostate church is NOT examining fruit. They JUST TRUST MEN and are being set up to accept THE LIE.

    The thing with ERGUN CANER has ZERO to do with THEOLOGY.

  19. It looks like blogger, Tom Rich of FBCJax Watchdog has posted several Ergun Caner articles (I’ve linked a few below). Here is another example of a blogger doing the work of a journalist, like Alex is doing here, uncovering stories of corrupt and lying pastors/leaders that normally get swept under the carpet.




  20. What I am cracking up about is that they actually pressed charges. They TRIED to punish him, with the secular world courts, for daring to stand up for God’s truth in their presence. Are they men of God or demons?

    Very telling about CCCM

  21. Nick,

    I pray that you read here, and if so, I imagine a crown awaits you in heaven for standing up for Christ in this manner. God had your back the whole time, and you spoke when the Holy Spirit lead you.

    I also pray that you have found good fellowship with a Christ centered church. CCCM’s lampstand was removed a long time ago. That is why when you brought truth, you were expelled & handed over to Caesar (similar to Jesus eh?).

    Calvary tried to put you to death for bring truth in their house, and Christ freed you. Amen.

  22. 19 should have said: “Calvary tried to put you to spiritual death for bringing truth in their house, and Christ freed you, Amen.”

    Dissent will not be tolerated

  23. Steve @20 “Dissent will not be tolerated”

    However every imaginable sin seems to be tolerated at CC. Dissent is the unpardonable sin in CC camp.

  24. I take Nick VanderLann at his word and believe him. I have seen too much duplicity in CC that it appears they have completely lost their credibility when it comes to who gets the benefit of the doubt. I think there are some striking similarities between Ergun Caner and the more recent scandal with Dinesh D’souza. Both were top leaders in Christians universities. Both were involved with Christian apologetic work. Both were supported by Calvary Chapel leadership. Both deny any kind of moral failure. The sins of both seem to be over looked, trivialized and even denied by some in leadership of Calvary Chapel. And time will tell but I believe Calvary Chapel leadership will try to restore Dinesh’s image as a new man after his divorce is final. Dinesh is already doing speaking engagements at church. For the life of me, I don’t understand why these churches allow this kind of duplicity to go on. It just screams of hypocrisy.

  25. alex,
    I’m not jumping to conclusions here. just asking an honest question given both Caner’s and CC’s known stance on Calvinism. Could it be that Nick’s objection was to Ergun Caner’s well known stance on Calvinism? could his interrupting an ongoing meeting have been another example of neo-calvinists shouting down, in their own meeting, those who disagree with them?

    what an unfortunate way this all turned out. CCCM’s thug tactics and questionable behavior towards a giving member in good standing should be seen as nothing less than reprehensible. but something tells me there is more to the story and it relates to Ergun’s hardline stance against New Calvinism. If this turns out to be true, to be fair, Nick’s actions and behavior are to be questioned and condemned as well.

  26. i just read the article form the ephesians511 blog you linked. i think he did a bit more than just adding his opinion. according to te article he came with the express purpose of disrupting that service and interrupting the speaking. and the tone and language he used… in his own account of what happened… wow, how can you defend that kind of behavior? and he seeks to justify it with how much money he’s given to the church as if he has ‘bought the right’ to act like that?
    sounds like he’s been listening to too much Mark Driscoll lately.

  27. Blessings to Nick for having the Chutzpah to stand up for what he believes. Shame on CCCM for their goon sqaud handling of the situation. I have protested outside of Calvary Chapel Montebello twice but I have stayed on public property at the am/pm across the street and on the corner of the storage palce on the same block and even then their Good Squad came out and one of them even cussed me and I asked him if he wanted to hit me, he said no but then took pictures of me from his cell. Both times they came out in force and I believe if I would have been on the property that I have have been physically acosted. They acted like Cowards in their approach to me coming out in numbers. I told them that tif they have truth on their side then they don’t have to worry about what I was protesting.

  28. Alex, I posted a lengthy response earlier and it appears to be hung up.

    Anyway, Ergun Caner has ZERO to do with THEOLOGY.

    Examine the FRUIT instead.

    The fruit of TRUTH or the lack thereof.

    That is the ELEPHANT in the room. NOT THEOLOGY!!

  29. Steve,

    Never thought of it that way, being “handed over to Caesar.” Like Paul, as well.

    You’re in good company here, Nick for some of us have been turned over as well to Caesar. I, too was threatened with being sued by a CC Board Member, if I did not stop in my attempts to meet independently with his pastor to hold him to an account for violating me and our marriage. Yes, I am supposed to be the ‘”crazy” one and he, well, what can I say, according to him, he has been called to be a CC Pastor. It’s called Narcissism and people would do well to study up on this to enable to see all the smoke and mirrors used to avoid accountability for the rampant sins committed in the midst of the congregation, in broad daylight even, without a hint of remorse towards or empathy for those who are the real victims who have been suffered as a result of this type of mindset.

    Steve, I like that—-a crown waiting for Nick.

  30. To MICh #24

    I guess you could say that about Jesus in the FOUR Gospel accounts when He overturned the tables, fashioned a whip of cords, and drove out the moneychangers.

    That image pretty much destroys the brainwashing of “gentle Jesus” walking around with a lamb on His shoulders, patting children on the head saying “I love you” to everyone He see’s, doesn’t it?

    Righteous anger is OK (even in the Temple) when exposing things that don’t glorify the Lord.

  31. so you all have no problem with the way nick conducted himself? wow.

  32. Mike,
    The situation with Ergun Caner has nothing to do with Calvinism. Absolutely nothing at all. I have listened to enough of Ergun Caner’s own biographical statements and compared that to the facts that I don’t understand how any of it can be construed simply as “mis-statements”.

  33. MICh # 27

    Do you have a problem with how Jesus conducted Himself in the FOUR Gospel accounts of Him overturning tables, fashioning a whip of cords, and driving people out?

  34. “what an unfortunate way this all turned out. CCCM’s thug tactics and questionable behavior towards a giving member in good standing should be seen as nothing less than reprehensible. but something tells me there is more to the story and it relates to Ergun’s hardline stance against New Calvinism. If this turns out to be true, to be fair, Nick’s actions and behavior are to be questioned and condemned as well.”

    Still scary that a So Callled ‘Church’ resorts to these tatics. Im more alarmed at that then Nick speaking out. To me nothing wrong at all with speaking out and disupting a meeeting as long as he didn’t cuss or threaten anyone

  35. MiCh @ 24 – Actually the article states that he went early to hopefully speak to Caner prior to his calvary speach, it just so happens that he had already begun speaking.

    Ultimately its hearsay, as you can bet your britches calvary claims ‘he deliberately came to disrupt the event’.

    What is this ‘behavior’ that you say is not worth defending? Audibly standing up for Jesus Christ, or simply calling a spade a spade?

    I wonder if men like Nick keep silent, if the very rocks will cry out?

  36. Andrew, you are so right on target, again. What in the world would D’ Souza have to say that I would be interested in hearing. A lecture on family value? Or how he tackle Obama to show the world that he’s not who we thought he was? Or how I should read my Bible. It seems to me that for a man who is well-educated, analytical, and research oriented, he would have search the scriptures to find out what constitutes marriage, adultery, and Biblical divorce, instead of what I would consider to be impulsive by meeting this girl, then 3 months later decide he wants to marry her—and expects everyone to understand and see his way. Well, why not — people have swallowed everything else he has said, why should they back up on him now. I mean, after all isn’t he the one that hand Obama’s head on a plate full of facts—-or did he?

    “Duplicity” a hallmark of narcissism and psychopathy, by the way. That would go along with pathological lying, exploitation, grandiosity, and a sense of being special or superior, eaily bored, reactive, impulsive, secretive, unable to handle criticism, charming, glib for starters. Hmmmm.

  37. steve

    did you go to the link provided for ephesians511 blog? seems to be testimony directly from nick as to how he conducted himself and what his mindset was before and during the ‘incident’.
    that’s the behavior i was referring to.

  38. Yeah Linda you are right. D’ Souza is quoted as saying that he didn’t know it was wrong in Christian circles to be engaged prior to being divorced. Wow, what a statment and Calvary chapel’s response to this is just plain unbelievable.

  39. linda,
    there is more ‘and’ less to the story on d’souzza that have been pushed in the media. would be a good idea to read some more on that, but i’m sure he would not, as a brother in the Lord Jesus, appreciate the unkind gossiping about him from comments on an article that has nothing to do with him.

  40. Mike, its not gossip to repeat what D’ Souza himself has said. Calvary Chapel is already willing to invite him back to speak.

  41. MICh—IMO you are out to lunch. These are direct quotes stated by him on his blog and in the interviews he gave, as well as, what he stated to those who held him to an account who are also to be counted as brothers.

  42. Andrew—touche LOL

  43. Mike,
    I also find the two stories of Ergun Caner and Dines D’Sousa compellingly similar. And the Ergun Caner story is relevant to the article at hand.

  44. MiCh @ 32 – I did read through the blog in its entirety. I am simply not seeing what other steps should have been taken prior to a public warning:

    1) The church was warned by letter (not Nick)
    2) The church was warned by Nick
    Nothing happend
    3) Nick instructed his spiritual brethren to ‘beware’ of the false prophet in the pulpit.

    Eph 5:11 & 1 Tim 4:6

    It is hard to ‘expose’ works of darkness, if the exposure is done in secret.

  45. MICh

    As a brother, I would expect far better from him that what he has exemplied as a brother in the Lord. Scriptures tells us that: if one calls himself a brother and is practicing sexual immorality, we are not to even eat with them. Divorcing his wife, then entering into an adulterous marriage is not repentance. Lying to cover up or scapegoating onto his wife is not repentance. Love is a choice, not a 4 letter word called lust.

  46. Steve said @ 19;

    CCCM’s lampstand was removed a long time ago. That is why when you brought truth, you were expelled & handed over to Caesar (similar to Jesus eh?).

    And this article was the writing on the wall for CCCM… and they excommunicated Roger Oakland because of it…


    Commentary by Roger Oakland


    When the Glory Has Departed

    I know Christian leaders and denominations that started out right but have ended up wrong. This downfall can be predicted in light of church history. God has raised up individuals from time to time to be leaders. As long as these leaders are led by the Holy Spirit and continue in His Word, God’s blessings will be abundant. Sometimes, a pastor will become a leader and a model for many other pastors. Eventually, a fellowship of churches with like-minded pastors may be the result.

    This fellowship of pastors teaches the Word of God and the sheep are enlightened and fed. The sheep, because they are learning, love God with all their heart. This love spreads to the horizontal plane and love is overflowing. The sheep want to tell others about Jesus. It is even possible to have a Jesus movement.

    However, the passing of time has a way of helping us forget. Perhaps another way of saying this is that Satan hates what God is doing. It doesn’t take long before the fellowship of pastors takes on a different perspective. Some pastors forget from where they came. They were once shepherds with small flocks. As they taught the Word and fed the sheep, the small flocks grew to become mega-churches.

    These mega-churches grew to the point that there was no longer a flock, there was a herd. There were so many sheep in the flock that the shepherd had no choice but to manage the flock by turning the church into a corporation.

    As everyone knows, churches, when they become corporations have to operate like a corporation not a church. In the world, people in corporations are always looking for position. The only way one can be successful in climbing the corporate ladder is to be loyal to the corporation and the corporate president.

    Here lies a problem—when a Christian becomes more loyal to a man than to the Son of Man, spirituality can soon turn into carnality. Carnality that is further driven by the obsession for power, position and possession often is the perfect recipe for disaster. What once was a wonderful Spirit-filled church now becomes a machine that simply goes through the motions. Everything looks like it is working. However, the machine is broken.

    When the Spirit Departs

    In the Old Testament, the Holy Spirit inspired the writer of I Samuel to give us an example of what happened to the children of Israel in days past.

    Israel, as a nation, knew the glory of God’s presence among them. The children of Israel prospered and became strong as they followed the Lord. However, Israel turned from God by making wrong choices. Eventually, they came to the place where the presence of God was no longer among them. The glory of God had departed.

    In a desperate attempt to win a battle with the Philistine army, Israel devised a plan. The leaders actually believed that if they took the ark of the covenant with them to battle that God was obligated to lead them to victory.

    Such was not the case. God did not fight for Israel. Israel was defeated and the Philistines triumphed and even took the ark. When a messenger returned from the battlefield with the sad news that the army was defeated, the ark captured, and the two sons of Eli were dead, Eli fell backward off his chair, broke his neck and died.

    Eli’s daughter-in-law, the wife of one of the sons killed in battle was pregnant. When she heard the news that her husband, brother-in-law and father-in-law were dead she went into labor. She gave birth to a son, but she died during the delivery. The Bible states that the woman who was acting as the midwife named the son—Ichabod. “Ichabod” means the glory has departed. [1]

    There are other examples in Scripture of what happens when the Spirit of God departs from a man. For example in 1 Samuel 16: 14 we read, “But the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD troubled him.” Or, remember the story of Samson. Once empowered by the Spirit there came a time when the LORD departed from him and Samson was not even aware that it happened. [2]

    A Biblical Solution

    The Bible paints a grim scenario with regard to what happens when the Spirit of God departs, doesn’t it? Well, I have some good news. There is a solution.

    I believe that such a scenario could be turned around. God wants His servants to finish the race. He does not take joy in seeing them defeated.Do you recall the words of Jesus when He spoke to the church at Ephesus as recorded in Revelation 2? [3] While the members of the church were noted for saying what was right, in their zeal to be right, they were wrong. In fact it almost seems as if the Spirit of God had departed from their midst

    This can be deduced by reading what Jesus said. He was warning that He would depart from their midst. Jesus said that the church at Ephesus had “left their first love” and that they needed to “repent” and “return to the place” where they had once been. That means they had departed and did not know it.

    Jesus said He would remove the “candlestick” if they did not repent. Clearly Scripture interprets this to mean that Jesus would remove His presence from the church of Ephesus. Did that mean He was about to write “Ichabod” above the door of the church?

    The Spirit of God points us to the Word. The Word, Jesus said, is the truth. What we do with the truth is entirely up to us. We can choose to obey or to disobey.

    I would pray that every Christian would sincerely ask God for His perspective of where we are and what we are doing. Don’t rely upon the praises of man or the fear of man as a spiritual barometer.

    When we stand before the throne all the things we did in the flesh will burn like wood and hay. Only those things that were done when we were led by the Spirit will count.

    It is all about getting the right perspective, now.

    Before it is too late.

  47. andrew
    “Mike, its not gossip to repeat what D’ Souza himself has said”

    you should update your definition of gossip from “what someone else says about you” to the correct meaning… “Casual or unconstrained conversation or reports about other people, typically involving details that are not confirmed as being true.”

    i’m was saying ‘some’ of what has been said about dinesh is ‘not’ true and is being ‘spun’ by a liberal media to smear his reputation in retaliation for his 2016 movie. and since the article alex has written and we are commenting on has ‘nothing’ whatsoever to do with him, it seems a bit gratuitous to take shots at this brother in the Lord. just trying to be fair.

  48. just unstuck a bunch of comments from William and a couple of others (Julie Anne and Once a CC Guru).

    The spam filter is extremely sensitive today for some reason.

    Post a message if you get one stuck and I’ll try to find it.

  49. linda,
    he was ‘not’ having a sexual relationship with the woman. also he and his wife have been legally separated for more than two years. stop speading gossip fed to you by the media. that’s not very ‘brotherly’ either’

  50. Caner and D’ nesh are touted to be apologist yet they have difficulty getting their facts straight on some pretty straight forward issues. Where did you live? Are you cheating on your wife. What biblical grounds are you suing your wife for divorce? Are you divorcing your wife in order to marry this girl. Did you spend the night together in the same hotel room. Why didn’t you know that you cannot be engaged to one female while being married to your wife at the same time. And what do you do for a living and you want me to know what regarding Scripture, morality, and family values?

  51. MICh

    Being legally separated does not constitute divorce nor does it biblically justify him being engaged to someone else. By token of being engaged, he committed adultery. You do not have to be horizontal with a person to be unfaithful to your vows. He did spend the night with her. He admitted this himself. Are you going to tell me and do really expect anyone to believe that he never layed a finger on her in any way that would be construed to be that of a romantic or sexual nature? If so, then I really don’t know what else to say to you. Sorry you don’t know the difference between adultery and faithfulness or the legal terms between separation and divorce. Or fact, and fiction. Has nothing to do with gossip, but I’m curious—why are you so hell bent on saying that it is gossip when out of his own mouth he has admitted these things. Oh, by the way Jesus told us that if we look at another with lust, we have committed adultery. Do you honestly believe they never touched or even kissed one another?

  52. Go Aztecs. Mash ‘dem Spuds.

  53. Sheck, LOL.

    Should be a decent game, but I think you guys get your Aztecs kicked. 😉

  54. Fight on you brave Aztec men. Whoop ‘dem Donkeys:


  55. For all you bible scholars out there, did you know the color for losing is blue? As in Democats next Tuesday and Donkees this Saturday night.

    Alex. Like the Yardbirds said, “Yer going’ down,down, down, down, down…down”

  56. Like I said, being as versed as he ought to be as an apologist, he knows scripture. Instead of investing his time in his marriage and getting things right with his wife, he chose to waste it away by chasing after this girl and then come up with the excuse that he didn’t know any better. By the way, I haven’t read anywhere that they were legally separated.

    First he stated that his wife asked him to leave 2 years ago. Then he stated that she demanded that he leave their home. But to my awareness, he did not say they were legally separated—-just living separately. Either way, it is not a divorce and either way, it is adulteryp—-at minimum, emotional adultery which is highly unlikely. His heart was not being faithful to his wife, it was being unfaithful. Period. It’s real hard to reconcile with your wife when you’r’e making time with someone else. And that is referred to as being a cheat, liar, and a thief. What more, it is a mockery of God’s grace and is full rebellion against that which God has ordained that no one and nothing should be permitted to tear them asunder. So, he by his choices decided to walk in disobedience and dishonor his wife, his vows, and the Lord himself. I’m done. Shame on you for trying to mimimize or to justify it by making it into an issue of “gossip.”

  57. To Steve #44

    Actually there were 3 warnings –

    1.) Roger Oakland posted in his News Alert dated Nov 7, 2010 that the CCCM board was warned about Caner (I have that screenshot & link in my article)
    2.) Roger Oakland sent an email to Paul Smith & Rob Yardley on Sep 21, 2011 warning them about Caner. (I have that email posted in my article)
    3.) Nick

    ALSO to the others –

    The ERGUN CANER situation has ZERO to do with THEOLOGY and EVERYTHING to do with the fruit (Eph 5:9 – “ALL TRUTH)

    To those who are trying to make it THEOLOGY – you aren’t getting it OR you are trying to steer the conversation in that direction.

    Jesus overturned the tables, fashioned a whip of cords and drove out the people – Using the Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa “protocol” for this – Jesus would have been thrown in Jail in Santa Ana.

  58. Sheck, two words for you: Scoreboard :-) Ok, it was one word with two syllables 😉

    I’ll bet you a bagel that Boise State wins my friend 😆

  59. William, yes CC is famous for creating Strawmen and Red Herrings to take the attention away from the real issues.

  60. Wow, if only we could transport the Apostle Paul to church services and see how much out of order he becomes in the midst of sin, deception, and manipulation. How I long for more men and women of God to have boldness as Nick. As someone said Sturgeon, or one of those guys told a women criticizing the way he witnessed…. I like the way I do it wrong, better than the way you DON’T do it.

    The giggles from the cc audience is so telling and natural there. I remember years ago when I was a new believer and attended there, if Chuck said some not nice thing about someone sooo many of the audience would laugh and clap with delight and Chuck would get such a kick out of it. I even than felt very unhappy about it, thinking it was so….oh, that’s our Chuck he is so awesome. Yuk!

  61. Alex. I happen to like herring.

  62. Sheckstein—–I got your blue. See ya Tuesday—“Don’t step on my blue suede shoes” :-)

  63. Linda – good for you. I think you should seriously consider using a new name…a pseudonym at that:

    “Pappas Fritas”

  64. William Saunders

    “Righteous anger is OK (even in the Temple) when exposing things that don’t glorify the Lord.

    @30 Amen, brother

  65. Linda said:

    “First he stated that his wife asked him to leave 2 years ago. Then he stated that she demanded that he leave their home. But to my awareness, he did not say they were legally separated—-just living separately. Either way, it is not a divorce and either way, it is adulteryp—-at minimum, emotional adultery which is highly unlikely. His heart was not being faithful to his wife, it was being unfaithful. Period. It’s real hard to reconcile with your wife when you’r’e making time with someone else. And that is referred to as being a cheat, liar, and a thief. What more, it is a mockery of God’s grace and is full rebellion against that which God has ordained that no one and nothing should be permitted to tear them asunder. So, he by his choices decided to walk in disobedience and dishonor his wife, his vows, and the Lord himself. I’m done. Shame on you for trying to mimimize or to justify it by making it into an issue of “gossip.”

    How do you know his wife didn’t end up being with someone? I mean she did ask him to leave the home, she may have moved on by the time he got engaged. If she moved on then she was the one who wasn’t faithful and broke their marriage vows. You might want to get all the facts first before accusing people of adultery.

  66. MICh @ 47 stated: “i’m was saying ‘some’ of what has been said about dinesh is ‘not’ true and is being ‘spun’ by a liberal media to smear his reputation in retaliation for his 2016 movie. and since the article alex has written and we are commenting on has ‘nothing’ whatsoever to do with him, it seems a bit gratuitous to take shots at this brother in the Lord. just trying to be fair.

    You sound just like D’ Souza. This is the explanation he gave when he was held to account by those who worked with him at the university. He made them the bad guy because they dared to exposed him and hold him to an account. Why do you think he resigned?

    You really are naive and very protective of a man who kept changing the facts and the story, then finally confessed he was engaged and that he did spend the night together with her, then try to scapegoat onto his wife and then came up with this conspiracy theory. Which IMO he has lots of practice in doing and cashing in on it at the same time.

  67. Solomon

    “How do you know his wife didn’t end up being with someone? I mean she did ask him to leave the home, she may have moved on by the time he got engaged. If she moved on then she was the one who wasn’t faithful and broke their marriage vows. You might want to get all the facts first before accusing people of adultery.”

    1) She did not file for divorce.
    2) She continue to attend Calvary Chapel, San Diego.
    3) They were separated–not divorced. Neither is permitted to remarry.
    4) If she was unfaithful that does not mean his affair is any less adulterous.
    5) You might want to check scripture on this to get all the facts first before excusing his adulterous and ungodly relationship he is was and is having with this girl.

    In God’s eyes they are still married. And they can repent and they can reconcile. But unless he has biblical grounds to divorce her, he has one option only and that is not to put her away in order to marry this girl. At least that is what God’s word states. Otherwise, he and this girl will be living in an adulterous marriage until his wife dies. Man’s ways and man’s courts will permit a divorce and remarriage, but God’s ways are not to be taken so frivously.

    The point is he is married and he he had no biblical right to be engaged, even if his wife was also being unfaithful. Two wrongs does not make it right to sin or to go on sinning against that which is holy and sanctified unto the Lord.

    Conspiracy to undo him—–he’s one to talk.

  68. Hand cuffed, arrested, and NO sit down face-to-face talk?


  69. What more isn’t D’ Souza being a brother, leader in the Christian community, and President of a Christian University to be a leader among young men and women, as well as to the church at large to be an example of a godly faithful man to his wife and to his marriage?

  70. MiCh – #31 I had a problem with it. See my comment #5. I think sometimes Christians get “carried away” and get too serious. CCCM arresting him was getting “carried away” too and too serious also imo.

  71. Grateful #69

    As noted in the article there was a CC staff member that recognized Nick when he was handcuffed on his knees and asked Nick “Why did you have to do it this way?”

    Nick had been in this guy’s “evangelism” class.

    As stated as in the article Nick replied “Why did I have to do this?”

    Nick is 6′ 10″ – I’m sure there were others there who knew it was Nick, he would be a guy that really sticks out due to his height.

    Personally, I believe what we are seeing is a glimpse of the future anti-Christ church that will be going after those who take a stand for The Truth. We will be labeled as “divisive”.

    I believe “They believe” they will be doing God a service.

    We can see how the gullible audience at the CC event was clueless about Caner.

    They just trust men without being Bereans, without being “wise as serpents”, without examining fruit, believing whatever they are being told by guys who claim to be Christians.

    2 Corinthians 11 discusses Satan’s “ministers of righteousness”. When you look up the word “righteousness” in the Greek it means – integrity, virtue, purity of life, rightness, correctness of thinking feeling, and acting

    In Jeremiah 17:5 there is a curse on those that trust in man –

    Jeremiah 17:5 – “Thus saith the Lord; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the Lord.”

    Psalm 37:22 -“For such as be blessed of him shall inherit the earth; and they that be cursed of him shall be cut off.”

    It’s OBVIOUS the audience doesn’t have any discernment with Caner thus they are all being set up to accept lies.

    It’s very telling, they all study the Bible (assuming), pray (assuming), and yet have NO discernment when it comes to guys like Caner.

    I believe they have been “cutoff” due to their trust in men.

    I also believe it’s our job to help rescue those (Jude 23) from their own spiritual dilemma.

    I can honestly say I was in that same place at one time and I am no better than any of them.

  72. Alex-
    Wasn’t this the same month that CS spoke at the pulpit against you..?
    What is the connection between Smith and Ergun Caner?
    Why did he even speak at the church?

  73. William,

    Many who are going to church lead very busy lives and don’t even research people like we good Bereans do here.

    If you go on another blog and criticize the emergents, more than half the believers will attack you and support them. It’s happened to me.
    If we were to have a discussion on emergents, I am sure that those who posted today woudl have very different opinions, especially some of the Calvanists who embrace mystics.

  74. To Hannah #73

    In my article coming out next on Caner there will be some new information that as far as I know hasn’t been revealed.

    Ergun Caner went by the name E. Michael Caner before 9/11. Right after 9/11 he was known as Ergun Mehmet Caner.

    Also, in his book that he released on March 2, 2002 (right after 9/11) the forward was done by Richard Lamb who is a member of the Council for National Policy (CNP) and the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR).

    Richard Land stated in his forward how “trustworthy” Caner’s book is and that Ergun Caner is a “trophy of God’s grace”.

    Something ain’t right!!

  75. I’m thinking the main objective was to call Caner out before he spoke to those attending this meeting. If he had just sat down seeing how Caner had already begun speaking, then nothing would have been accomplished. Nick spoke boldly and out loud for all to hear. He was in the moment which could not have been an easy thing for him to do.

    He broke rank and being that this is not the usual or “normal” thing to do at CC, I would imagine most people, well actually everyone there, was stunned or confused, or just not knowing what to do when security came along to remove him. Yet I have to believe there were many there that knew Nick, yet stood by and watch this happen.

    Without the Holy Spirit working within us, it’s difficult to step out in faith to support another due to fear of being dragged away as well. There many studies done on situations like this. It is a rare occasion that someone steps out of their comfort zone to help someone who is being treated wrongly. CC knows this. IMO they count on this. It is a form of bullying that lets others know who is in control and who has the power.

    I keep on thinking about the holocaust. One of the most importance message my Jewish ancestors wanted the world to know is to: Never forget (holocaust), as it can happen to you and to do so only assures us that such a time will be repeated, using tactics that were described in this incident with Nick and CCCM. In deed you will be turned over to the gestapo, the police, the gerdarmes, the SS, the courts, the gallows, the guiotene, the ovens. Think not? Things things were happening long before America would acknowledge it, before Germans admitted it and before the Jews understood it.

  76. I truly believe that a redefining is coming. It would not be the first time in history but I am praying it will have greater impact than the other times. The question “What does it mean to be Christian?” is what will have to be answered for this redefining to come in its fullness.

    Some people look at CC and see an organization that has gone wrong but perhaps they were never right? I have heard so many people say that they preach the Word and yet now looking back I realize that is a misconception. Did Satan “preach” the Word to Jesus in the temptation in Matthew 4? The devil quoted scripture verbatim but if Jesus had heeded what he had to say, He would have been in disobedience to the Father….How then, can saying scripture out of context and without any intention towards increasing the holiness of the hearers, be considered to be preaching the Word?

    CC has been very wrong for a very long time. First of all, a Moses model for Church leadership is completely unbiblical. In Moses’ day he was the only one who shared a close relationship with God and the people had to rely on what he heard from God. The same is not true for the Church. All of those who are truly Christians have the Holy Spirit and have a direct relationship with God and all have the same access to be called friends of God (John 15) that Moses had (Exodus 33:11).

    The structure in Jesus’ Church is based on the model He set for His disciples and guidance from Paul’s epistles. Anything else is an attempt to return the blood-bought Church that Jesus Christ is building, to the legalistic bondage the hell-bound Pharisees, scribes and priests of Jesus’ time tried to inflict on the people. Jesus set us free from the curse of the Law (Galatians 3). In the legalistic world of the Pharisees, anyone who spoke up and questioned their authority, would be arrested and even killed.

    CC is such a pattern of Pharisaical logic that I truly cannot find any other biblical context to place them in at this point. They have chosen, like the Pharisees, to sit in Moses’ seat (Matthew 23), and like the Pharisees their works are evil so they will face the same condemnation the Pharisees faced unless they all have Damascus road experiences like Saul/Paul did.

    While I was reading through Acts 9 about Saul’s conversion, I realized that a very healthy question regarding Saul’s past persecution of the Church came up. No where in that area of Acts do we see anyone being arrested for challenging Saul’s authenticity. We also do not see Saul making a prideful boast of all he was in the natural to explain why he should be accepted by the Church and we do not see him ridiculing anyone who challenged him. Instead Saul’s boldness in preaching the Gospel got him in trouble with the Jews and this confirmed to the disciples the truth of who Saul had become. No where in Acts 9 do we see a hint of any type of cover-up or shadiness from Saul or anyone else around him. When Barnabas brought him to the disciples it was because he was actually able to explain God’s radical work in and through Saul. There was proof of the truth and Saul was not found to be a liar, but if he had found to be a liar the Church would have had every right to reject him and his teachings because he would have been very dangerous to the faith of many and someone would have had a right and even a mandate to warn the Church…..exactly the way Saul/Paul ended up warning people passionately about deceivers throughout his epistles!!! Fortunately for us all, Paul was really who he said he was and God really did all that Paul said He did in Paul’s life…The same cannot be said for many CC leaders and affiliates.

    Folks the Bible literally has the answer to every question. I am certain of it. CC has no basis for even calling itself a Christian organization if it does not use the Bible in its day to day operations corporately and if so many of its leaders and partners do not use it in
    their day to day lives. If they are not a Christian organization then what are they?

  77. I have one in moderation but I had a few things I forgot to say. Linda thank you for your kind words. Hannah I’ll be fasting on Friday if you or anyone else would like to join me. Julie Anne “blech” helps describes the nausea I feel every time I read some new injustice from leaders claiming to know God. William I agree that we are seeing the methods of the anti-Christ. I think that the spirit of anti-Christ has come against the true Church from the very beginning. I count myself as having escaped as well and I know I was very, very deceived. I tried to explain all the dynamics of how it was possible for me to be that way because it upset me that I could be so ignorant of the devices of the enemy. I chalked it up to spiritual laziness and maybe not fully rising to pick up my cross and follow the way Jesus said we should and feeling the comfort of being in a place where no one was really expected to live a completely biblical, Spirit-led Christian life. Now I am living the abundant, righteous life Jesus secured for me and I am no longer in any type of religious bondage.:-) And last but not least: Alex: You rock! I am inspired more and more each day by this site and all that God is doing through it and through people here.

    Blessing to all. :-)

  78. Actually it is all about theology Dr. Caner is following the single most important part of the american religion. It is far more important that all the secondary issues like God, Jesus, the Bible and other such issues. This is the paradigm and he is strong in the faith in my opinion. He is pragmatic, and pragmatism, next to generating income is the most important aspect and fruit of the American Religion.

  79. Overly Concerned

    What you have shared is almost precisely what I have shared with my husband regarding my own concerns towards CC in their failure to hold him to an account and then enable him to take part in leadership roles in ministry.

    I don’t know about anyone else but the frequent references that I heard for the 34 years that I had attended CC along with various discussions with several pastors, save one was that of being a Christian but walking in the examples set by the apostles before receiving the Holy Spirit with a heavy emphasis on church and masculine authority. It just never set right with me. As time went by I heard more and more people excuse their hedonistic lifestyle claining the blood at the same time. There is a lot of emphasis place on Romans 7 and in comparison little demonstration of a renewed mind and heart with the justification that being human God’s grace had that covered as well..

    When I first came to Christ, within 24 hours there was a rapid change in my heart and in my mind. Now, I know we each are brought to the foot of cross in different ways, but I don”t see anything in scripture that indicates that we get stuck in Romans 7 and fail to move into Roman’s 8 and I don’t anything after that which excuses sin. Rather, I see exactly as Over Concerned has shared consistently with us. The evening I was born again, the Assist CC Pastor gave me Halley’s handbood,. A week later, my son gave me a teeny weeny wrap gift he has made in preschool. It was my first memory verse. “Study to show thyself approved, a workman that needeth not be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of God.” Since those first few days of my conversion, I have gone beyond what I was learning in the studies with CC. For some, this becomes like a fly in their soup, but for other it is like iron sharpening iron, a sweet savor to their senses. But to those who dwell in Romans 7, it is often as if I am an enemy to the cross and a thorn in their side. I believe that I have been called out from among a church that may have taught a gospel of grace, but forgot that Jesus did not do away with the law, but told us each that we needed to repent, to believe and to walk in obedience to His word, not that which is misinterpreted or taken out of context to reinforce a system that stops short of even entering that which was given to us on the day of pentecost, then fully in operation due to a body of all believers exercising the gifts that does not discriminate due to gender, but rather identify everyone in Christ as being much better than that which was in operation during the days of Moses and the Aaronic Priesthood. That is, we are of the Royal Priesthood and we are all able to hear the leading of the Holy Spirit and we are, as a community a universal catholic church called to serve one another and to preach the whole gospel of christ, not just that of grace, but also of judgment. To do less only leads us to fooling ourselves into believe that we are saved when in reality we failed to take in the total message of the cross and the shed blood that was shed to enable us to walk a straight path, not looking to the left nor looking to the right. And certainly not following leadership, that leadership resemble more of the ways of the world than of Christ, who is the true head of all of us.

    Overly Concerned, again you are such a tremendous blessing. I hope you don’t mind and if you do please just say so, but I copy and paste into a file so I can easily assess to read over and over again. Are you familiar wiith Mechan and Matthew Henry? Your words is like meat to my bones, particularly during the season that I currently am in as I wander the land to stay safe and to keep the faith. I do thank you for permitting the Lord to use you in this way. He has blessed me through your posts and I so appreciate this, It is good to be in the house of the Lord, dwelling together in unity. Thank you, Lord for answering my prayers and for providing the meat of your word. May I chew on it and be satisfied enjoying the fullness you provide through them. May you bless Overly Concerned for blessing me as well. Thank you for your love and amazing grace in my life, in my heart and in my mind.

    People should stop excusing their sins upon the weakness of their flesh as if they have not been born again, lacking the Holy Spirit—thus putting to nought that which was completed on the Cross. As Paul tells us, we are either sowing to the flesh or sowing to the spirit, it is a choice and it is base on our obedience. The more we walk in it, the less we will sin. To do less is mocking God’s grace and His sovereign will for His church.

  80. Curious, by what authority does Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa have to handcuff anyone? Isn’t this strictly a police responsibility? This makes my stomach roll. From what I read, this seems like a case of illegal detainment and a form of assault by the so called goon squad. Calvary Chapel seems to be getting very aggressive with squashing dissenters. This is cultish behavior and the people need to be warned.

  81. This arrest reminds me of a more historic arrest…

    Michael Servetus inexplicably stopped in Geneva, where Calvin and his Reformers had denounced him. On 13 August, he attended a sermon by Calvin at Geneva. He was arrested after the service and again imprisoned. All his property was confiscated.

    Michael Servetus was a man who held an opposing view of the trinity and how individuals should approach the scriptures verses that doctrines of the church. It is interesting to note he was pursued by both the followers of Calvin (actual he pursued Calvin and challenged him both publicly and privately over Calvin’s teachings) and the Roman Catholic Church.

    Now who is this man this NBA player risk public arrest over?

    Well apparently Ergun Caner tended to not quite tell the full story (possibly a little deception here?) in his autobiography and was called on the carpet about it. He lost one University leadership position over his carelessness with personal details. “On June 25, 2010, Liberty University removed Caner from his position as Dean of the seminary after finding “discrepancies related to the matters such as dates, names and places of residence.””

    The moral of the story here is an older time standing up against the popular thinking would cause some rather grave consequences. Today we are more civil, we get sued by our family. But the goals were/are the same…

  82. Careful,
    You bring up an interesting point and one that causes even more concern with me when it comes to Ergun Caner. Ergun Caner was supposed to be an apologist for the Christian faith. This means one affirming the doctrine of the trinity, scripture and all of the other essentials of the Christian faith but when Ergun caner lost his credibility in being able to tell simple biographical statements about himself, he lost his credibility as a defender of the faith in matters of Christian apologetics as well. This is why this is serious to some and possibly why Nick VanderLaan risked his own arrest. But I can’t speak for him.

  83. If Mr. Caner says he is from two different places, it is also possible he is from neither of them. I would be weary of anything that man says.

  84. @Andrew

    Calvary Chapels have police officers in the sanctuary while the service is going on as well as ones who stand at the entrances of the sanctuary.
    When you have been there awhile you get to know them.
    Are we paying tax dollars for this? I think so.
    Also when you need several to sit parked in police cars at the entrances of the church.
    When you think of how many hours each week these officers/cars are there.. and all the services…./.lots.
    Seems these police officers supercede the “church” to make arrests based on their interpretation of the grounds for it.

    So it is kind of ironic that we have biblical instruction on how the “church” should handle situations/conflict, and in this case the law clearly superceded any scriptural mandate.

  85. Was just thinking about Jesus’ arrest in Luke 22. Handed over by the religious leaders. Seems convenient to include the law when it benefits the church…..

  86. What Caner is accused of is lying about one part of his life in an effort to bolster his story and gain notoriety. He isn’t the first and won’t be the last, but that isn’t the subject here at all. The subject is how do we deal with people who yell, “The Emperor has no clothes!” in a crowd who adores him?

    You notice the CC bouncers have their own hand cuffs and I will assure you they also most likely carry weapons which launch small bits of metal. Now is this appropriate in a church? Personally I believe in today’s culture having people willing to defend the safety of a crowd is essential, but in this case after Nick’s removal having him arrested is over the top. It smells of an earlier age when silencing the critique was more important than seeking truth.

    Have we progressed any further today?

    Please don’t bother me, my mind is made up.

  87. I don’t really fault the police officers. They are probably getting paid partly from the tithes coming into the church. I fault the leadership of the church who probably ordered the police to make an arrest because their ego was threatened with truth being exposed. Does anyone know what pastor or Moses Model figure was in charge at the time this went down?

  88. Andrew-

    How do you know that the church ordered the police to make an arrest?

  89. Hannah, I don’t know. I said probably as in my own conjecture. It wouldn’t surprise me however and would love to know if anyone has any details..

  90. linda
    “I keep on thinking about the holocaust…”

    Really? now CC is Nazi Germany and I suppose Pastor Chuck is Herr Hitler himself…
    come on back to reality for awhile

  91. MiCh @ 92 said “now CC is Nazi Germany and I suppose Pastor Chuck is Herr Hitler himself…come on back to reality for awhile”.

    Is that all you have to offer here? Putting words into other people’s mouths and slandering their mental health? Your selective quoting and amateur trolling are not from God.

  92. In my article, I have the documentation that it was Gilbrt Martinez from CCCM that made the arrest.

  93. Andrew

    A citizen has the right, and in some cases because the crime does not rise to the level allowing a police response ( e.g. Trespass), the citizen is required to “detain” the suspect. That can be effected by the citizen complying with the request to remain or physically restraining the suspect. This is lawful under a citizens arrest. The only liability is civil as to the suspect and is known as wrongful imprisonment…but the detention has to be wrong (no crime committed or else wise.

    The police are off duty and attenD the church and are a part of the security force at CCCM along with other staff involved.

  94. Gilbert sems to be involved in a number of these type incidents

  95. Steve @93

    Thanks!!! He missed the point entirely, but then again I guess that what they come on to do, huh.

    As for me, I’m a bit green concerning these types, so sure appreciate your help in calling him or her on it.

  96. Just thinking during the days of Jesus, the scribes and pharisees also had their own security force. It was them that was sent to the garden to get Jesus to bring in for trial. Once found guility for a capital type offense, he was thn turned over to the Romans to exact the punishment. That way, the hands of the high priest and his “colleagues” would be considered clean. That is, innocent of shedding blood.

    We sure haven’t learned much, have we. Like Jesus said, the very stones will cry out, for their redemption was so close—-yet so far away due to the blindness of their hearts.

  97. If the cycles of human history are any indicator, CC and its leadership will go the way of John Calvin’s iron popedom in Geneva. Extinct.

  98. Jeff Sheckstein,
    Thank you for the info. Although this appears to be a citizen’s arrest, could this have happened without the church’s leadership being involved or at least complicit in it? After all these off duty police officers that are part of the security ministry there probably report directly to the Moses Model pastor. It would appear they would be under the jurisdiction, authority and influence of the pastor in charge of this facility. In this case, would this be Chuck Smith himself?

  99. Andrew

    You give the organization too much credit for being ” organized.” my experience is that the inmates run much of the asylum, especially with Romaine gone. Chuck doesn’t get involved with the minutiae of security. Rolph likely did when he was there and folks like Gilbert likely have stepped in since.

    While good cause exists to call into question the Moses Model, facts are is that Chuck likes things loose and delegates mucho authority…entirely consistent with his beliefs re Holy Spirit led and called ways and evader ship. Now before I get executed here, I am not stating ths to excuse him or that he is not a sinner. Much of the time he leaves it to the Spirit to identify and lift up..just wish it were more pervasive as he has aged.

  100. Evader ship. Meant leadership, although with many CC’s, evader ship ay be the better descriptor.

  101. Not all security is off duty. There are many on the property at the time of the services in uniform.
    My understanding is that the city supplies them.
    Would it make any difference whether off duty or on duty as far as how this situation would have been handled? Meaning that if on duty the officer makes the call vs. off duty-the church makes the call?

  102. Mine a follow up to Andrews #100

  103. Seems to me, arresting someone of ‘renown’ would be a bad PR stunt. Unless said stunt was to send a message akin to “even celebrities will bow to the ‘descending dove'”?

    I’m curious if the DA read what happend and thought ‘religious insanity’? Or if someone made a phone call to “pardon” him after the fact. Calvary is pretty big on not sparing that rod…perhaps they felt Nick was in need of a spanking?

  104. Steve

    Never underestimate the value of a good public hanging

  105. We need to remember that a CC Staff person recognized and spoke to Nick. Nick was not a stranger to CCCM. That pastor could have vouched for Nick and taken the cuffs off.

    Also, when Gilbert Martinez made the citizens arrest and gave the report to Santa Ana PD, the word “Pastor” was used when referring to Ergun Caner.

    I believe that was KEY using that word (twice).

  106. As a followup to William when the Santa Ana police arrived, probably much time had ellapsed. Surely someone with pastoral status and authority at the church must have been well aware of the situation but did nothing at the time to greese the skids for a better outcome for Nick.

    I understand that Chuck is not the kind of guy to lower himself to get involved in the minutiae of security. That would be way too condescending for him from his lofty position. Its not that I view the organization as being too organized, its more that the organization and leaders think much much higher of themselves than they really should.

  107. Andrew,

    The last few words of your comment resonate deeply with me right now. I have been thinking a lot this week about the narcissism that places like CC encourage. Clearly based on Nick’s secular fame he had the opportunity to make himself into someone who would command worship within the CC community, but based on this article and his site he turned that opportunity down. He could have just gone along with the hypocrisy and he would have had a huge, personal, self-exalting platform. The same is no doubt true for Alex. If they had only kept their big mouths shut they would have no-doubt been two of the golden boys of the CC community nationwide.

    They chose to speak up even though it would cost them their own CC reputations. That is huge! Choosing to speak for God in the midst of godlessness is huge any way. But choosing to take a stand that will remove one from a position of being worshipped by people in the CC community, to a position of having your character questioned by them is even more huge! It says something amazing to heaven though. It speaks of a willingness to be just like our Savior and to be obedient to the Father even if it means loss of earthly reputation for a while. Jesus may have been murdered by the religious leaders of His day but in eternity every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that He is Lord.

    For us who pick up our crosses and follow Him, the truth will be revealed in eternity as to who was truly godly and who was not and God will reward accordingly. But in the case of CC I know that we will not have to wait for eternity to see God move to vindicate the many people who have been abused. I say that because of the damage they and other organizations have caused to the faith of many while claiming that they are providers of God’s Word and truth. They make huge claims that God has not substantiated based on His Word and their criticisms of other godless organizations are beyond hypocritical, but it is the lengths that they have gone to, to maintain a beautiful image, while in fact the ugliness is just below the surface, that I believe will be their downfall.

    If an organization confesses that it has been a training ground for men who hurt children and who are spiritually abusive or whose lives are not consistent with the message they preach and declares its intent to change that is an amazing thing that allows for God’s grace to be poured out and for change to happen. But CC’s arrogance is such that they adamantly refuse to accept that they are such a training ground. The pride level is huge and denial of the true nature of the organization nationwide is huge. Again the only basis for a Christian organization is Christ and He humbled Himself even unto death. Humility comes before honor.

    Those who humble themselves before the mighty hand of God will be honored by Him, in eternity if not in this life. But CC has made the mistake of shaking its fist at the very idea of humility and instead honoring pridefulness in its leadership that is dishonoring to God because it takes some of the glory that belongs to God alone and diverts it to men. The disciples of Jesus in the Bible made certain that no one worshipped them. What kind of men would do the opposite? Well we just have to look at the words of Lucifer to see a blue-print of the type of men who seek worship for themselves. He said that “he would ascend to heaven and be like the most High”.

    Disciples of Jesus choose humility and giving glory only to God. It is far more than just rhetoric to say that when leaders consistently show a prideful, superior attitude, insisting that they are above others and demanding a certain level of worship and turning people into followers of themselves, rather than followers of God, then they are not disciples of Jesus.

  108. I will arrest you all. Now eat your cake and shut up!

  109. somebody said cake? yummmmmmmmmmm

  110. Do we get Kool-Aid, too, with our cake, Papa Chuck? Wah wah– we want Kool-Aid, too.
    — (Those who remain in the pews)

  111. It is a misdemeanor in California for a person to intentionally disturb “any assemblage of people met for religious worship.” Prohibited conduct (i.e. yelling, swearing, threatening) is not cloaked with constitutional protection simply because it is associated with speech. The constitution does not entitle an individual to express their views however and wherever they choose. Freedom of speech is not protected on privately owned property such as church premises that constitute a non-open forum. The more a property is open for use by the public, the more freedom of expression is granted to the public. It is for the church to decide whether a particular religious expression or belief is appropriate on its property. If speech is “inappropriate for the property or incompatible with the intended use of the property, then the expression may be totally barred.

  112. churches have legal recourse to prevent unwelcome persons from entering church property, disrupting the worship, or bothering members. Such legal recourse consists of calling on law enforcement for assistance in removing trespassers and unwelcome persons from church property, obtaining a restraining order if the conduct meets the criteria (including physical threat or irreparable injury), suing for monetary damages, if applicable, and/or requesting criminal charges be filed if the misconduct warrants a criminal penalty (fine not to exceed $1000 or up to one-year imprisonment, or both). In dealing with a belligerent member, keep in mind that a member may have the right to be on church property and thus would not be a trespasser. A restraining order may be more difficult to obtain so long as the person remains a member of the church. However, a member that disrupts a worship service in violation of the California Penal Code §302 or inflicts damage on person or property is guilty of other crimes (such as assault or battery or vandalism) and may also be held civilly liable for damages

  113. I was thrown off the CCCM campus when I attended a “Webservants” meeting. I had not said a single word other than to ask what my name was when they went around the room. i stated who I was and then was escorted off the campus.

  114. Doug Gilliland

    When and where did this happened and how does it feel to be black-balled from CC for practicing your faith?

    I suspect we are all on the list. That’s alright as I am certain our names are written in the book of the lamb as well.

  115. Hi Followers in Christ,

    This incident is showing us how Satan has crept into the the Body of Christ. We know this isn’t the beginning, nor will it be the last. I believe God is showing his children to come out of this corruption. The antichrist system has always been infiltrating the Body of Christ. Some christian leaders are aware of the deception, and say nothing, and some don’t know, and are blind. The leaders that are aware and say nothing, are just as bad as a wolf in sheep’s clothing, or they are a wolf. The leaders that are blind, Jesus say them, and those that are lead by them, that they will both fall into a ditch (stumble). So what does a Christian do? We warn the leaders and the flock of the deception, if they don’t do their own research and see if these things are true, then the bible says their blood will be on their own heads.
    How long does a Christian stay with a certain fellowship? The answer is pray and allow God through His Holy Spirit to lead you (sometimes easier said then done). You know, it is difficult to leave the Body of Christ, people you have known for years and love. But, and only if the Lord is leading you to leave, then you leave, and trust that He will take care of you. We all need to know that our faith in Jesus is not dependent on fellowship with a group of Christians (which is great to have, but not always there). But, personally obedient to reading and living His Word (loving obedience), and in prayer. Sometime a soldier will be separated from his group, but we have not lost communication with the Commander of the Lords army.

    In the meantime, I will warn all who will take heed, and I hope you all will keep doing the same.

    Your brother in Jesus Christ

  116. IC–CCCM.

    Seriously, I am grieved to hear this but at the same time can’t help but chuckle over these types of decisions being made, as it proves just what we have shared regarding CC leadership and its inability to make the changes that have brought on the crticism voiced on this blog.

    I believe Overly Concerned is so right in what he shared today.

  117. To Doug Gilland #113

    Religious worship was not taking place, Ergun Caner was there as a professor, Ergun Caner was cracking jokes, Ergun Caner called out to the audience that if anyone had a problem with him to tell him, Nick VanderLaan spoke out given the opportunity.

    Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa sent a message doing what they did to Nick.

    As I stated earlier, Jesus would have been arrested for overturning the “merchandising tables” outside the CCCM sanctuary where they sell all books, DVDs, T-shirts, etc being sold by the men that are in spiritual apostasy.

    Jesus said to us “Follow Me” and I can easily see that Nick VanderLaan did just that.

    What we all witnessed was the anti-Christ church that allow already exposed guys like Ergun Caner, David Barton, and Jerry Boykin – deal with those willing to take a stand for the truth.

    We also can’t forget the Jesus-the-Messiah rejecting (anti-Christ) Avi Lipkin being allowed the pulpit to speak to the gullible, men-trusting audience in spiritual terms.

    Here is a documented video showing that. Notice right at the 1:19 time mark that Avi Lipkin is speaking at a Calvary Chapel and speaking in spiritual terms. The guy rejects Jesus as the Messiah which makes him an antichrist according to 1 John 2:22, Avi doesn’t have the Holy Spirit but is rather under Satan’s power according to scripture. What is he doing being allowed to the flock speaking in spiritual terms?-


  118. I agree with Saunders. It wasn’t a solemn religious assembly and Nick was a CCCM giving member and a known quantity. Challenging Caner was fair game and maybe necessitated asking Nick to leave….but not cuffing him up, detaining him against his will and having him arrested.

    That’s total b.s. and Calvary Chapel should change their ways, but they won’t.

    Marking them and warning against them and avoiding them is the only option. Reform and repentance seems like a pipe dream. These guys are pretty intentional and willfully bad.

  119. http://www.blogtalkradio.com/prophetic-news/2012/07/14/threatened-with-arrest-in-the-church-exposing-rick-warren

    There are a lot of similarities with this story. Perhaps a pattern? Bear was removed from Calvary Community (a CC) in Phoenix also Tri-City in Tempe Arizona at a conference he attended. This is well worth the listen.

  120. […] I believe that some Christians are becoming better educated due to the information available on the internet and are far less willing to tolerate baloney! Let me introduce you to Nick VanderLaan, a former NBA player who is(well, most likely was) a member of Chuck Smith’s venerable Calvary Chapel, Costa Mesa (CCCM). I read about this story on the Ephesians511, Calvary Chapel Abuse and  BGBC blogs here, here and here. […]

  121. Doug,

    Thanks for the info

    I think it would be wise to remain on public property whyen protesting thse things at Institutional churches. The Institutional churches are married to the state so they will call on caeser when dissent is voiced. I went to Calvary Chapel twice to protest false teachers and to warn the sheep there and they still sent out their “Secret Service” to confront me and one of them who isn’t even a true believer cussed me and took cell pictures of me. I was on Public property the whole time when these goons came out to confront me.

  122. Chuck may be old now but he has fostered this type of wicked leadership among his crew of bandits. I also don’t buy the “he is old now” as an excuse for his lack of sheep tending, he seems fine to me as he did to Alex. My granpa is 87 and as sharp as ever.

  123. “I agree with Saunders. It wasn’t a solemn religious assembly and Nick was a CCCM giving member and a known quantity. Challenging Caner was fair game and maybe necessitated asking Nick to leave….but not cuffing him up, detaining him against his will and having him arrested.”

    Be that as it may but the courts won’t let themselves be caught in the middle of whether a particular event is worship or some other event. if it’s at a church and the church says it’s worship, then that’s what they will conclude.

    Alex you know well where I stand with regards to CC but they seem to have been within their legal rights here. If this is going through the courts they will decide whether or not Calvary operated within the law or not. I am thankful for laws protecting Christian services and anyone can make a citizen’s arrest, from what I understand.

    Doesn’t mean that I don’t think there are times which more than justify this sort of action – we just need to be aware of the consequences if we do these sorts of things. If anyone is going to indict Norm Geisler let it be me. He knows very well that Chuck Smith is a heretic (on the resurrection of the dead) and does not speak out against his heresy.

  124. […] a conference and challenged the wisdom of inviting the somewhat controversial Ergun Caner to speak. He was later arrested by Santa Ana police.  (HT: Julie at BGBC […]

  125. He wasn’t acquitted, the charges were dismissed.

  126. My bad, thanks for the correction Doug. I’ll make the changes

  127. I was at the Veritas Conference when this happened. Yes, Ergun Caner is controversial. That’s understood. But he should have been arrested for what he did. The way he way screaming and shouting was terrifying. It wasn’t just the Calvary Chapel “goons” that stopped him, it was loving husbands and Christians protecting their families. I would have done it too if I wasn’t sitting so far away.
    I’m not a Calvary Chapel church goer, and I don’t even live in Orange county…. but what he did was worth being imprisoned over. That’s not Matthew 18 at all. It wasn’t anywhere near Christlike.
    I don’t know Ergun Caner’s story or controversy. All I know is he did a stand up job at the conference. It seemed very unfair and violent from my vantage point…someone from out of town attending a free Christian conference.
    This whole thing seems very biased and skewed. What happened to you that makes you so bitter and hateful against Calvary Chapel? It seems like you have some serious heart issues to work out.

  128. Jon you’re certainly entitled to your opinion, but the facts don’t seem to support your conclusion.

    Nick was a member and a known quantity of Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa and not an out of towner unknown like you.

    Nick didn’t have a weapon. He stood up and answered Caner’s challenge…loudly so all could hear.

    My advice, if you think this is “violent” and you were scared…is don’t go to a City Council Meeting anytime soon or to a local political debate or tense public hearing…you’ll probably wet your pants 😉

  129. Quote from Jon:
    “I’m not a Calvary Chapel church goer, and I don’t even live in Orange county…. but what he did was worth being imprisoned over. That’s not Matthew 18 at all. It wasn’t anywhere near Christlike.”

    He’s joking, right? Not Christlike? I guess overturning tables and whipping greedy merchants wasn’t Christlike either?

    What gets me is… was there ever a letter of apology from CCCM? A least an acknowledgement that they were wrong? Did they ask Nick to leave the church? Or was he too good of a paying member to let go?

    People are right that CCCM was within their legal rights to cuff and detain Nick. But that’s “legal” rights. They acted in no way befitting for a church. I remember being at a CC and someone was going into a demonic attack (or she was schizo, whatever you believe), she started overturning chairs around her, stumbling on the floor. And the police was never called. They put her in an office room and prayed over her. LOL… I’m 100% serious. Well, it worked, she calmed down, and they let her go. No police involved.

    It’s just another example of CC Movement covering up to protect their brand and Pastor Smith doing nothing about it. Nick was a known member, especially going to the Veritas Conf, the majority of the congregation would not have attended. Nick was involved at CCCM. There was someone there who would’ve recognized him and should’ve vouched for him. But I guess Ergun Cancer was bringing in too many book sales that day.

    The CC Movement is such a joke.

  130. Jon,

    You stated in part: ” it was loving husbands and Christians protecting their families. I would have done it too if I wasn’t sitting so far away.”

    You also stated in part: “I’m not a Calvary Chapel church goer, and I don’t even live in Orange . . . ”

    I’m a little confused here, so please clarify for me. Since you also referenced Matthew 18, I am assuming that you are a Christian that decided to go to this conference. But you are not an apologist, nor are you employed with Veritas, otherwise you would be familiar with the controversy regarding this speaker, right?

    You stated: “All I know is he did a stand up job at the conference.”

    Now, I’m really perplexed and I really do hope you decide to respond to this, because often times we think we know the truth by what we see, but find out that it was just a portion of what was about something totally different than what we had been told to believe about a situation that we witnessed. It’s called cognitive dissonance.

    Since you didn’t know anyone, how do you know that it was ” it was loving husbands and Christians protecting their families” who tackled Nick? I mean, did you talk to these guys that did this? Or was it a case of you filling in the blanks. By your own words, you stated you knew nothing about the speaker, yet Nick knew and he did do the Matthew 18. What more he was well known among the congregants and leadership. Now that is a big sanctuary there at CCCM and I know that if I was to say anything to the person “on Stage” and for everyone to hear, I would need to turn up the volume quite bit to be heard.

    What more, if you are not involved as an apologist or are not familiar with the speaker, except to say something pertaining the person’s speaking style (monotone, funny, informative, stoic, interesting), then you really cannot judge the merits of what this speaking may be saying, correct? I mean, the speaker could be telling a bag full of lies and as long as he is across as appearing to be creditable, then in your mind, for a person to come into the meeting, and speak out, would seem out of order and worthy of being arrested, Correct.

    And besides this, could you be drawing a faulty assumption that CC would not have anyone speak unless they were creditable?

    Nick did his homework and attempted to address this with the leadership. He came in to do just what you thought the men who went after were about. That is, Nick is the one who was not only trying to protect his family, but the church family that he so dearly loved and fellowship withing CCCM.

    This is a good example of how easily a spin can be placed upon the truth to make it seem as though wrong is right and right is wrong.

  131. Jon,

    Please understand that you deliberately put a spin on this. But is is what CC does frequently to avoid being held to an account. You were just an observer, having some of the puzzle pieces and you went with that. Not knowing the rest and believing that CC leadership was above reproach.

    Personally if you bought any of this speaker’s materials, I would return it and ask for my money back. And then thank God for teaching you a valuable lesson in what we have shared with you concerning the pieces of the puzzle that you did not have at the time.
    For CCCM to make out to be anything other than what it was, this is what is referred to spiritual abuse and a form of gaslighting.

    Oh, by the way when you say that everyone sins, it still does not excuse that person from being held to an account, to repent, and to make the amends necessary in order reconcile with the one you have offended. To think otherwise is what have and does lead to the leaven of the entire body of Christ that is instructed to live a holy and obedient life, not make excuses by saying, oh well, so who doesn’t sin–sweep, sweep, under the rug until the lump is so hight that one by another person begins to stumble, falling on top of one another right off the proverbial cliff into utter destruction and church apostasy.

  132. I have attended C.C.C.M. since 1980 and graduated from C.C.C.M. School of Ministry. After seeing the “underbelly” of C.C.C.M. especially while attending S.O.M. I have decided it’s better just to move on that fight a system that has no desire to mend its ways. Since making that decision my spiritual life has improved greatly because I no longer grieve over their decision to remain as they are today. C.C.C.M. is dying body.

  133. To Jon # 130

    You said – “Yes, Ergun Caner is controversial.”

    Answer – Controversial is the wrong word for Ergun Caner. Ergun Caner is a liar or he is completely delusional because what he states about himself doesn’t line up with the facts about himself.

    There is no controversy with Ergun Caner, there is controversy with CCCM and any other church allowing this phony baloney to take the stage. His scholarly “CREDENTIALS” are meaningless as is anyone else when they lie.

    You said – ” But he should have been arrested for what he did. The way he way screaming and shouting was terrifying.”

    John 2:14-16 – “And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting:

    15 And when He (JESUS) had made a scourge of small cords, He (JESUS) drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables;

    16 And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not My Father’s house an house of merchandise.”

    Would you have been terrified if Jesus would have came in to CCCM and wanted Him arrested too?

    You said – “but what he did was worth being imprisoned over.”

    Jesus said –

    John 8:44 – “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.”

    Matthew 23:33 – “Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?”

    With Jesus fashioning a whip of cords, overturning tables, driving people out, calling people hypocrites and vipers – that pretty much blows a hole in the brainwashing image the apostate church has been taught about Jesus.

    The apostate church in America especially has this un-Biblical image of Jesus walking around with a lamb around His shoulders, patting children on the head, saying “I love you” to every person He sees.

    Calvary Chapel CM leadership was recorded being warned –

    1. Roger Oakland warned the CCCM board in 2010 of Ergun Caner. That is recorded in Roger Oakland’s “News Alert” November 7, 2010.

    2. Roger Oakland warned CCCM leadership on September 21, 2011 of Ergun Caner. That is recorded in my article.

    3. Finally Nick VanderLaan warned CCCM on October 29, 2001 of Ergun Caner.

    After these 3 recorded warnings, Ergun Caner is still on staff at Veritas (Roman goddess of truth -pagan) Seminary. ERgun Cnaer is listed as a professor in the 2012-2013 catalog.

    All three records are in my article.

    You said – ” It wasn’t anywhere near Christlike.”

    Answer – I believe I have provided sufficient scripture to blow holes in your idea of what “Christlike” is.

    You said – “I don’t know Ergun Caner’s story or controversy.”

    Answer – “You need to stop trusting men (Jer 17:5) and be a Berean and do your own research on Ergun Caner and understand what dynamic is going on inside CCCM.

    Gullible men-trusting people who believe whatever a pastor says without being Bereans are being set up for a lie.

    2 Corinthians 11:13-15 – “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.

    14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

    15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.”

    Satan’s “Ministers of righteousness”

    The gullible men-trusting apostate church is set up to believe the lie.

    Not being Bereans. Just believing whatever they are being told, not being wise as serpents.

  134. We just posted the Nick VanderLaan interview –


    This is Nick VanderLaan’s own words as to what happened. There are more details given.

    Also, the Ergun Caner situation EXPOSES something MUCH LARGER going on at CCCM.

    We have seen UNBELIEVERS (who don’t have the Holy Spirit) look at the DOCUMENTED EVIDENCE on Ergun Caner and they see it.

    How come Brian Brodersen (who supposedly has the Holy Spirit) and the flock at CCCM don’t see it?

    The Ergun Caner situation EXPOSES something that could be SCANDALOUS.

    We ask the hard questions in the November 14th article.

  135. John said:

    “I have attended C.C.C.M. since 1980 and graduated from C.C.C.M. School of Ministry. After seeing the “underbelly” of C.C.C.M. especially while attending S.O.M. I have decided it’s better just to move on that fight a system that has no desire to mend its ways. Since making that decision my spiritual life has improved greatly because I no longer grieve over their decision to remain as they are today. C.C.C.M. is dying body.”


  136. Do not challenge Pope Chuck.I will arrest you all. Now eat your cake and shut up!

  137. You can’t have your pudding if you don’t eat your meat

  138. “People are right that CCCM was within their legal rights to cuff and detain Nick. But that’s “legal” rights. They acted in no way befitting for a church.”

    The Calvary “line” is that it was not an appropriate way to raise his concerns. As Alex correctly pointed out Nick was a “member’ of CCCM but both of these points are themselves problematic. At CC, there really is no official membership list nor are there member’s meetings.

    People who visit CCCM may not realize that, especially if they are members of a real church where there is membership and member meetings with votes, etc.

  139. […] Blogger Alex Grenier of Calvary Chapel Abuse published an article about former NBA player and Calvary Chapel member, Nick VanderLaan.  I have highlighted important points below. Take a look at the whole article here. […]

  140. Did anyone attend the board meeting Wednesday night November 13, 2013. (no study, no preaching,no music he was not interrupting a single thing) it was opened up for a membership vote.. In reading about this CCCM goons lol.. I believe this guy who calls himself a Pastor Will was probably one of the goons.This evening during an election for approval of Chuck Smiths daughters husband to take the place of Pastor Chuck.

    A person raised his hand as I noticed, as I wasn’t sitting that far away. He wanted to ask a question, he was not disruptive nor agitated, very nicely asked a question after permission was granted. As soon as he started talking this ( I won’t even use the word Goon) Nazi type he goes by Pastor Will started raising his Voice at him, the Nazi started in with it s e e m e d his usual ritual voice “stop talking”, you are a disruptor, and his body language was just plain very very ugly. I ve watched the History Channel off and on and let me just say The so called P a s t o r W i l l certainly looked like he was moving in physically remove this Church going member.

    it was really bizarre and every thing I could not imagine but expected to see in a cult or Jones town type, “Shut up or we will deal with you”, very threatening mentality, you could see certain guys standing up to pounce on this guy, very ugly.

    I ve going to pastor chucks church for a long time, but this member ship meeting had every tone to it that was ugly, No one could say a word, no one could ask a question. When the church member asked his question, he asked for a vote of the membership meeting to see how many members wanted to have 1. a discussion about replacing pastor Church who died, he asked for a second, and many many members hands raised to “second the motion” for a discussion. 2. That passed overwhelming, multitudes of church members raised their hands. 3 I didn’t look around or behind me or left or right! but noticeably a lot of members raised their hands. 4. Since this motion passed (btw yes the goons were all still hovering around him and other body guard types were standing up ready to pounce) 5. This member asked (btw he had to ask questions in such a manner and in such a way so the guy running the vote had to listen) poor guy image trying to speak publicly, in a State of California Dept Of Corporation licensed public meeting and Goons like the sowwie yes i said goon) this Nazi Will dude intimidating the Hell out of him breathing down his neck. 6 Finally yes he squeaked, or eked out words can we vote to see how many want to have a discussion about who is to replace deceased pastor Chuck?
    7. I just have to say, poor guy I felt very sorry for him, This guy running the public corporation meeting for CCCM barely gave him any room or latitude to F R E E L Y be expressive, with out I N T I M I T A T I O N. 8. He rammed down a hurried vote, asking how many want to have a discussion about Pastor Chucks replacement, it was really bad, I am sure if the State of California Dept of Corporations Commission members had witnessed this they would have probably suspended the meeting if not CCCM Public License to operate as a business, i am sure of it. 9 Let me continue please since it seemed so unfair and one sided this evening, I am going to make a case for the minority . is that Okay Cheryl? lol the minority in a democracy do get to have a voice. lol or not in CCCM land lol. 10 enough of the satire, so the guy quickly and hurriedly asks for a vote. The democratic thing to do and christian thing to do, if there was really going to be a vote, would be to at least state for the record on the speaker system ‘ there has been a motion before this body to vote for a discussion on replacing 40 year reigning Pastor Chuck, the right thing for him to have done would be to repeat the question out loud, ask the assembly to check their conscience if perhaps an open discussion on this, to make it clear and then ask F O R a V O T E. I was astounded how and the manner how (i am sowwie) blew him off. Then rammed a vote who wants to not have a discussion and he barely looked around, no one counted the yes votes, all he said was, a vote lol was take and you were out voted hahahaha… if it wasn’t in a church it be funny. 11 I can tell you this is great satire material for late night talk shows and u tube viral info.

    The guy actually stayed in the service, I d had walked out if it were me I d have been humiliated the way and manner of the goons, that Nazi Will the intimidating manner this public corporation conducted its meeting was like in the Old Stalinist days in the former U S S R . These thugs like Will would make great dude running the Kremlin Gulag days

    I am writing this mostly because I know there are others who sincerely do not want to do to Pastor Chuck years of work what is happening and happened Wednesday night 11/13/13 California dept of Corporation Public meeting and vote. This Brian guy couldn’t stand in Chuck shadow, yes yes yes haha I know remarks are coming hes not trying to lol..hes been trying to do that since he came back from England. I am very close to women who go to all the services and womens study. The is alot of public info out there for all of us to make our own minds up and not be bullied or have what I call at best
    a Gulag meeting.
    for the record i know there are going to be all kinds of christian Pundits and prognosticators about who I am lol. i must e this or that kind of person lol
    let me clear this up here and now
    1 Yes I am a member for long enough at CCCM
    2. No I am not some regular disgruntled guy looking for a beef
    3. No i don’t have anything against anyone there personally (lol other than the behavior of this Will guy
    4 And yes sowwie i will say for the record the dirty little secret is out about Will, lol send his any where but CCCM he certainly doesn’t belong in security, he certainly has no place in the sanctuary walking around like he always seems to do with a growl and mean spirited look o his face looking to jump all over the first person that breathes wrong.. this guy has and continues to give CCCM a black eye.. I am sure the board will keep him come HELL OR HIGH WATER. So i ve said it, yes get ride of the guy.
    5 no I am not anyone who is involved in movements, green or no denom etc.
    6 who I am is a Member who has a deep love for pastor Chuck and the years he gave loving and shepherding his sheep
    7 No, I not some one who goes around looking at CCCM campus seeing if cig Butts are being picked up
    8 I am someone though when i see intimidation and a ram rod election will exercise my God given right to speak my mind. which
    9. Sham on you Will, Sham on you speaker, Sham on you Brian, if you were any kind of a civil guy, you d see this, is everyone blind
    10. and yes i served my country and decorated in time of war,
    11 No I am not some flunky
    I cant wait to see all the reply’s, let them come. I hope others will come forward and ask for a discussion on who is the real person to replace Pastor Chuck GB him rip
    like everyone else it seemed tonight who had a different opinion.

  141. […] Evangelical Seminary – including Jesuit-trained Norman Giesler and an adjunct professor named Ergun Caner who was exposed as a liar (and Calvary Chapel actually handcuffed a leading church member who dared […]

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