John Alan Turner

Speaker, Author, Mentor, Coach, Facilitator

Pack A Lunch

I have technology that allows me to see when someone lands on my website. I can see where they've come from and what they do while they're here. I can even tell where their Internet Provider is. It gives me a general picture, though not a specific one. So, I could see it coming. I knew what was going on. Someone typed my name in a search engine. They didn't spell it correctly, but the internet is very forgiving when it comes to spelling. They found my blog and began to read every single entry I've ever posted.

Talk about someone with a lot of time on their hands!

And then they started searching for specific things. They searched my blog for the word "baptism". Then they searched for "community church".

Okay, I can see where this is going.

But then it got personal; they searched the word "father".

I thought this guy was trying to dig up dirt on me (and maybe he was), but when he typed that word in I started to wonder if this wasn't about me but was about my dad.

My father is Dr. J.J. Turner for those of you who don't know. He is a man of God, a man I respect greatly, a man of learning and a man of integrity. He has been the greatest single influence on my life, and I would do just about anything for him. So, when you pick a fight with him, you've got one with me, too.

Well, "jc" finally found a couple of things objectionable enough to comment on. And this was his comment: "What does your Daddy think about all of this? Isn't he a known Gospel preacher for the Church of Christ? jc".

This comment was made in response to my belief that closed- or circular-scholarship has bred a fair amount of cult-like practices among some people in the Churches of Christ. I made that statement along with the idea that this is not the case among most members or leaders in the Churches of Christ. And I applauded the efforts of men like Rubel Shelly, Mike Cope and Randy Harris.

So, "jc" wants to know what my Daddy thinks about this.

JC, whoever you are, I actually called my dad and talked to him about this. He is a grown man, and so am I. He is a man of faith, and so am I. He is a student of the Bible, and so am I. We agree on many, many things -- most matters theological. We disagree over a few things and have agreed that none of the things over which we disagree amount to salvation issues.

His suggestion was that if you have questions about what he thinks, go ask him.

My suggestion is that if you do muster up the courage to have that conversation -- pack a lunch.