Two months after filing a $750,000 lawsuit against former ERLC head Russell Moore, Pastor and former SBC Presidential candidate Mike Stone has dropped the claim, voluntarily withdrawing the claim and putting an end to the legal battles between them. Stone told the Baptist Press in a statement:
“Several days ago, I instructed my attorneys to withdraw the lawsuit. This past Thursday, the court formally granted my request. This was a voluntary action on my part alone. I have trusted the Lord with my eternal soul, my family, and my ministry. I can and I do trust Him in this present matter. He does all things well, knows all things perfectly, and judges all things and all people rightly in His own Sovereign time.”
Stone filed suit back in October claiming that a series of letters leaked by Moore painted him in false and defamatory light, enumerated below, and to destroy his campaign for president.
Of particular wickedness is the fact that Moore implicated Stone in covering up sexual abuse- a claim that Stone decimated the crooked religious politician on, pointing out that if he were in fact covering up abuse that Moore says he knew about, then why didn’t Moore tell anyone?
The letter itself is incredible. That is, it is without credibility.
Think about it for just a moment; here’s a man who’s the highest positioned ethicist in the Southern Baptist Convention – at least he was until just a few days ago. And if you take his letter at face value, then he has known about cover-up, intimidation, bullying, stonewalling, barriers, pressure, all of these sorts of things against victims of sex abuse.
He’s known about lies and backroom deals and corruption and he’s known about it not for days or weeks or months. He’s literally known about it supposedly for years while he has not breathed a word, meanwhile republishing a book called The Courage to Stand.
Fact check: true. Stone continues:
Nobody who knows me believes that I would ever be a part of trying to cover up sexual abuse or silence its victims. That again is an outrageous lie. And again I don’t use that lightly toward anyone, but nobody who knows me would believe those accusations.
And when I talk about people who know me, let me be clear; that does not include Russ Moore. He has never, though claiming the high moral ground in this issue, he has never, not one time in a private phone call email text message visit letter, he has never not one single time contacted me privately and personally to confront me about a sin that he thought that I was committing, to caution me about an error that he thought that I was making or to warn me about a misstep that he thought I was about to lead the southern baptist convention executive committee into. No, rather he chooses these guerrilla tactics, to use some of his own terminology.
Part of the problem we have here, is we have a generation of leaders who are raised in a participation trophy era that think that if you disagree with them about anything that you’re attacking them, and that they’re enduring some kind of trauma or psychological terror.
Once again, this is not the future of the Southern Baptist Convention. And while I’m on this point, the outlandish nature of the ungodly, unbiblical nature of Russell’s slander against me on this point, is only rivaled by the outrageous nature of pastors over on SBC Twitter. Pastors who hear one side of the story and immediately call for me to be removed from any office and banned permanently from any service in the Southern Baptist Convention…
Moore, for his part, has not acknowledged the lawsuit in any way.
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