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Tag: Kent Hovind

Black Collar Crime: Kent Hovind Arrested on Domestic Assault Charges

kent hovind

The Black Collar Crime Series relies on public news stories and publicly available information for its content. If any incorrect information is found, please contact Bruce Gerencser. Nothing in this post should be construed as an accusation of guilt. Those accused of crimes are innocent until proven guilty.

Young earth creationist, felon, and owner of Dinosaur Adventure Land, Kent “Dr. Dino” Hovind, was arrested last Friday on a domestic assault charge.

AL.com reports:

Kent Hovind, the Alabama evangelist and owner of Conecuh County’s Dinosaur Adventure Land, was arrested last Friday on a domestic violence charge after his wife claimed the pastor bodyslammed her, according to court records filed Thursday.

Hovind, who is known as “Dr. Dino” and has nearly 185,000 subscribers to his YouTube channel, allegedly injured his wife, Cindi Lincoln, by bodyslamming her, sending her to the emergency room in late 2020, according to an order of protection Lincoln filed July 19 against Hovind.

“He wants to shut me up,” Lincoln wrote in explaining why she fears the evangelist. “He is dependent upon public opinion for his livelyhood [sic.] …. [I] fear he will kill me to shut me up.”

Lincoln also claimed Hovind sent his “right-hand man” to her rental property to threaten her and that he trashed the property the next day.

Hovind was arrested July 30 on third-degree domestic violence, records showed, and he was released from the Conecuh County Jail after posting $1,000 bond.

On his YouTube channel, Hovind proclaimed his innocence, saying he was “squeaky clean.”

“We’re going to come out squeaky clean,” he said. “There’s nothing to be concerned about.”

Hovind spent nine years in federal prison on financial-related offenses, including structuring bank withdrawals and failing to file tax returns.

Religion News Service reports:

News of the arrest and the request for a protective order was first posted by Robert Baty, a blogger who has been critical of Hovind. 

Hovind has long been a controversial figure.

In 2006, he was sentenced to 10 years in prison for tax fraud after failing to report hundreds of thousands of dollars in income and failing to pay taxes on wages for employees at the Creation Science and Dinosaur Adventure Land in Florida. Hovind has claimed that everything he owns belongs to God and that therefore he owes no taxes.

Hovind’s first wife was also sentenced to prison time on tax charges. The couple has since divorced.

Hovind continues to maintain his innocence in the tax fraud case. 

After his release from prison, Hovind moved to Conecuh County, Alabama, where he set up a new Dinosaur Adventure Land, a Christian campground that promotes creationism. The campground’s logo features a brontosaurus looking up at three crosses on a hilltop.

Dinosaur Adventure Land is run by Creation Science Evangelism Ministries Inc., a nonprofit where Hovind serves as president. The charity collected $560,638 in revenue during the fiscal year 2018, according to documents filed with the IRS.

….

In a video posted after his July arrest, Hovind asked supporters to pray God would protect the ministry from outside threats.

“Lord, build a hedge of protection around us as we’re being attacked,” he prayed.

In 2020, Hovind sued the federal government and a number of government officials over his past conviction and the seizure of property belonging to his past ministry in Florida. That lawsuit was recently dismissed. An appeal is planned. 

Hovind attended (and graduated) from the same college I did in the 1970s, Midwestern Baptist College in Pontiac, Michigan.

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

You can contact Bruce via email, Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube.

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

Jim Elliff says, Avoid Bart Ehrman, He Could Cause You To Lose Your Faith!

bart ehrman

Repost from 2015-2016. Edited, updated, and corrected.

Jim Elliff, the director of Christian Communicators Worldwide, thinks Christians should avoid Bart Ehrman because he could cause them to doubt or lose their faith.  For those of you who are not familiar with Evangelical-turned-agnostic New Testament theologian Bart Ehrman, his credentials are as follows:

Bart D. Ehrman is the James A. Gray Distinguished Professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He began his teaching career at Rutgers University, and joined the faculty in the Department of Religious Studies at UNC in 1988, where he has served as both the Director of Graduate Studies and the Chair of the Department.

Professor Ehrman completed his M.Div. and Ph.D. degrees at Princeton Seminary, where his 1985 doctoral dissertation was awarded magna cum laude. An expert on the New Testament and the history of Early Christianity, has written or edited [over] thirty books, numerous scholarly articles, and dozens of book reviews. In addition to works of scholarship, Professor Ehrman has written several textbooks for undergraduate students and trade books for general audiences. Five of his books have been on the New York Times Bestseller list: Misquoting Jesus; God’s Problem; Jesus Interrupted; Forged; and How Jesus Became God. His books have been translated into twenty-seven languages.

His books include:

  • God’s Problem: How the Bible Fails to Answer Our Most Important Question — Why We Suffer
  • How Jesus Became God: The Exaltation of a Jewish Preacher From Galilee
  • Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why
  • Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible (And Why We Don’t Know About Them)
  • Heaven and Hell: A History of the Afterlife
  • How Jesus Became God: The Exaltation of a Jewish Preacher from Galilee
  • Jesus Before the Gospels: How the Earliest Christians Remembered, Changed, & Invented Their Stories of the Savior
  • How Jesus Became God: The Exaltation of a Jewish Preacher from Galilee
  • Forged: Writing in the Name of God – Why the Bible’s Authors Are Not Who We Think They Are
  • The Lost Christianities: The Battles for Scripture and the Faiths We Never Knew

Ehrman is a royal pain in the ass for Evangelical pastors and theologians. His books are well written and quite devastating to many of the tenets of Evangelicalism — especially Biblical inerrancy and infallibility. His books are accessible, making it easy for the average Joe-the-plumber reader to understand the history and nature of the Bible. In other words, Ehrman has successfully bridged the ivory tower/pew divide. I heartily recommend his books.

Years ago, Ehrman participated in a debate with Craig Evans at a Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Midwestern is a Southern Baptist institution.  By all accounts, Ehrman decidedly won the debate.

Video Link

Speaking of this debate, Jim Elliff, a man I knew from my days as a Reformed Baptist, thinks debating Bart Ehrman is a bad idea. Here’s why:

First, because Ehrman is a false teacher and we are forbidden to give such men a forum to express their views.

The Bible doesn’t treat false teachers kindly. It is one thing to talk with a skeptic who is asking questions to know the truth, or who is confronting you in public, but it is quite another thing to invite and pay a false teacher to come to your turf in order to present his views in an open forum.

Inviting a false teacher to present his errant views in order to persuade students and the public is like allowing a gunman to shoot randomly out into an audience of military personnel because it is assumed the troops have body armor. For one thing, body armor cannot shield against all shots, and for another, there are many people attending who have no armor at all. At last week’s debate, for instance, there were many people from the public who were not even believers. Some young people also attended, and some seminary students who are not yet prepared for the effects of doubt-producing verbiage…

Second, because the minority position almost always gains some followers regardless who wins the debate.

When you have a sizable crowd it almost goes without saying that someone will be convinced of the false views of the false teacher. You may sense an overwhelming approval of the debate by many who love the give and take, but fail to take note of the quiet student or outsider to the seminary now stricken with doubt about the Scriptures. Ehrman’s presentation might be all that is needed to move him over the line…

Third, because debates are not always won on the basis of truth alone.

We don’t need to comment much here, because you understand how this works. Ehrman clearly won the debate by the account of several attending. He simply won it by his cleverness and expertise at debating. His opponent, the believer, was well able to defeat him with the truth, but missed his opportunities in several places, giving credence to the idea that he was a better writer and lecturer than debater. In fact, this is the second time Ehrman won a debate at the same seminary, but against a different Christian opponent. What does that do for our witness? Though I have no question in my mind that our position on the reliability of Scripture is the right one and can withstand Ehrman’s arguments soundly, our side was out-debated.

Fourth, because many of the listeners will not have the opportunity to sort out confusing aspects of the debate with professors or knowledgeable persons…

Fifth, because doubt is insidious.

One seminary student who has now graduated told me that he occasionally had huge doubts about Scripture and God. They were not there often, perhaps only for a few difficult days or weeks once every year or two, but they were so strong that he found himself almost smothered by them when they came. This was a leading student, chosen as one of the best preachers of the seminary. Doubt is insidious. Like a drop of ink added to gallons of water, it can ruin everything. It is the fly in the perfume. We are naïve to think that, being free from doubts ourselves, others do not deal with them regularly.

When a man like Ehrman speaks, doubt-producing statements may be forever lodged in people’s minds, causing trouble when least expected. It only takes a tiny amount of doubt for some people to be destroyed. A weak person might believe his doubts rather than believe his beliefs…..

Where, oh where, do I begin?

There is no need for me to go through a lengthy refutation of Elliff’s post. His position is quite simple:

  • Bart Ehrman is a false teacher
  • Christians are not to listen to false teachers
  • False teachers like Ehrman cause Christians to doubt
  • Doubt causes people to lose their faith
  • Doubt must be avoided at all costs, so information that is contrary to the approved narrative must be avoided

Consider this. The doubting students that Elliff is so concerned about have gone to Evangelical (Southern Baptist) churches their entire lives and have at least four years of college education, most likely at Evangelical institutions. After a lifetime of training, four years of college, and after uncounted sermons and Sunday school lessons, the students still aren’t prepared to withstand hearing ONE debate featuring a non-Christian?

I have one word for this: pathetic.

Elliff lives in a world where the only truth is his truth– though he calls his truth “God’s” truth. Even though most everyone admits Ehrman handily won the debate, according to Elliff he won by deceptive means. Since there is only one version of the truth, Ehrman had to win by other means.

The money quote is this:

Ehrman clearly won the debate by the account of several attending. He simply won it by his cleverness and expertise at debating. His opponent, the believer, was well able to defeat him with the truth, but missed his opportunities in several places, giving credence to the idea that he was a better writer and lecturer than debater.

Elliff seems to have forgotten his Bible. If I remember right, the Holy Spirit indwells every follower of Jesus. When believers are called on to give a defense of their faith, the Holy Spirit gives the believers the words to say. Evidently, the Holy Spirit didn’t come through for Evans.

Elliff lives in an alternate universe where saying the Bible says _________ is the satisfactory answer to every question. It’s the equivalent of a child wanting to know why, and their mother telling them, because I said so. That’s the world Evangelicals like Jim Elliff live in. Any facts that don’t fit the approved orthodox narrative are rejected out of hand. Even when the facts are overwhelming, great lengths are taken to explain away the contrary evidence. Young-earth creationists such as Ken Ham and Kent Hovind (Dr. Dino) are perfect examples of this.

I left Christianity because I no longer believed the Christian narrative to be true. It was my desire to know the truth that ultimately resulted in my deconversion. If Christian seminary students, most of whom are studying for the ministry, cannot be confronted with contrary evidence for fear of losing their faith, I would suggest it is not a faith worth having.

Doubt should not be discouraged. Evangelicals should be encouraged to question, investigate, and test the beliefs which their pastors (and college professors) and churches say are true. A faith that will withstand the onslaught of the modern/postmodern world must be able to answer the questions the modern/postmodern world presents. Perhaps, that is the real issue. The Christian faith has run out of answers. All that is left is warmed-over dogma from years gone by, irrelevant and no longer satisfying for the needs of humanity.

It really is all about the Bible; on this point both skeptics and Evangelicals can agree.

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

You can contact Bruce via email, Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube.

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

Did You Know Atheists Are Sexual Deviants?

pray for atheist

I want to share with readers several emails I received from a Fundamentalist Christian named Matt Nye. Nye is of the opinion that people reject Christianity and become atheists because they are sexual deviants.  I hope you find his emails instructive. Pay particular attention to the fact that Nye tells me he is 21 years old and that he became a Christian after years as a porn-loving atheist/agnostic. My God, they must start watching porn quite young where he lives! Besides, since he was an atheist before he became a Christian, doesn’t this mean that he was a sexual deviant too?

One of Nye’s favorite preachers is Tim Conway, pastor of Grace Community Church in San Antonio, Texas. I wonder if Nye is aware that I once was Conway’s pastor? Imagine, one of his favorite preachers had an unsaved, sexual deviant as his pastor. Gotta love the irony, right?

Based on several posts on his now-defunct blog, Matt Nye is a Calvinist. As a card-carrying member of the John Calvin Club, surely Nye knows that God has decreed and predestined me to be an arch-enemy of Christianity. And since I cannot overthrow the plan God chose for my life from before the foundation of the world, it’s God’s fault, not mine, that I’m a sexual deviant.

I hope you will also note in the one email that Nye asks me to watch one of convicted felon Kent Hovind’s seminars. Ken Hovind attended Midwestern Baptist College, the same college I attended in the 1970s. According to Wikipedia, in 2007, Hovind was “convicted of 58 federal counts, including 12 tax offenses, one count of obstructing federal agents, and 45 counts of structuring cash transactions” and sentenced to ten years in prison. In July 2015, Hovind was paroled. Now out of prison, Hovind, also known as Dr. Dino, has returned to his calling, preaching the gospel of young-earth creationism.

Here’s email number one:

Hi.

I noticed you said you left the Christian faith and are now an atheist. I have a question for you though. Before I ask you it, we have to define what a born-again Christian is. A born-again Christian is someone who knows the Lord, evidenced by 1 John 2:4.

So my question to you is this, did you know the Lord?

This presents a serious problem for you, because if…

A)… you say “Yes” then you are admitting there is a God and creator, but you walked away from him.

B)… you say “No”, then you are proving that you never were a Christian.

I don’t mean to sound condescending and I’m sure being a former pastor you know the scriptures more than a 21-year-old like myself, but according to 1 John 2:19 “They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us.”

You’ve had a false conversion my friend. I ask you to consider these things seriously because eternity is a long time to be wrong.

Email number two:

Hi Bruce.

To be honest, I don’t know you at all personally, as I am a nobody who stumbled across your site.

What I’m asking you to consider is this, were you truly “born-again”?

I was a false convert until the age of about 20 when the Lord opened my heart and saved me.

I’m willing I can describe your situation all those years. The “church” or “worship” part of Christianity is this “grit-your-teeth” sort of feeling. There’s also a sense deep within that you are rebelling against something. Like this energy within you that is fighting against something. I can assure you that “inner-rebellion” is completely gone. The only thing left is my sinful flesh which is dying little by little. Theology or preaching must have been your #1 thing while Jesus was just some accessory.

As I’ve said before, I don’t know you personally, but I assure you that the main reason people reject Christianity and become atheist is because of a sexual deviance. (Jude 1:18 “How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts.”) Pornography is a big one. It was with me. I actually was atheistic/agnostic for some years and then intellectually became a Christian again, or “returned from a back-slidden state” thinking I was still saved. But when God saved me for REAL, he really revealed himself. Christianity isn’t a mental acknowledgement of the facts. Saying a sinner’s prayer and trusting in the prayer won’t do it.

Sir, I’ve had too many prayers answered to know that this isn’t just a coincidence. There really is a God. I plead with you, regardless of what you’ve heard about Kent Hovind. Watch one of his seminars and just think to yourself “Ok, there’s a chance I could be wrong, so I’ll be open minded” Eternity is too long to be wrong.

Email number three:

I’m amazed at how atheists can be so emotional over something they don’t believe in. I’m only spending my time to e-mail because I truly care about you, not to be condescending.

When you look at the Venus Fly Trap or any other Carnivorous plants, are you really going to believe that it was the result of a mutation? Here’s something striking, mutations have never been observed to introduce new information in the genome. Mutations can only scramble or duplicate existing information.

Check this page out.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carnivorous_plant

I made no attempt to engage Nye or answer his emails. After he emailed me the first time, I responded and told him I wasn’t interested in corresponding with him. I asked him to not write me again, but, in classic Evangelical fashion, he ignored my request and emailed me several more times. This kind of behavior is quite common among Evangelical zealots who feel duty-bound to share what “God” has laid upon their hearts. They have no respect for atheists, and seem only concerned with hearing themselves talk.

I suppose I should feel sorry for this young man. His head has been filled with foolishness that he thinks is “God.” He’s a youngster who pridefully and arrogantly thinks he knows the Bible and the mind of God so well that he can, with great certainty, pass judgment on my spiritual condition. Never mind that I have likely forgotten more Bible knowledge than Nye will ever know. All that matters to Nye is putting in a good word for Jesus. He’s told Bruce, the atheist the truth, and now that he has done his duty, he’s free to move on to other atheists who desperately need to hear that they are sexual deviants.

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

You can contact Bruce via email, Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube.

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

Sacrilegious Humor: Creationism by Lewis Black

 

lewis black

This is the fifty-first installment in the Sacrilegious Humor series. This is a series that I would like readers to help me with. If you know of a comedy bit that is irreverent towards religion, makes fun of religion, pokes fun at sincerely held religious beliefs, or challenges the firmly held religious beliefs of others, please email me the name of the bit or a link to it.

Today’s comedy bit features comedian Lewis Black.

Video Link

Bruce Gerencser