Proverbs 18:17 says that “The first one to plead his cause seems right, Until his neighbor comes and examines him.” This is wisdom for all of us in how we treat one another in the body of Christ. If I hear a bad report about a brother, I always assume that there’s another side to the story and that the one I’m hearing may be wrong or ill-motivated.
The same principle applies to the way we evaluate media reports about brothers and sisters in Christ. I’m not even going to post the link to the disgraceful AP story that I read today about Two Rivers Baptist Church in Nashville, Tennessee. The AP released outrageous, unsubstantiated allegations about the church’s leadership, and I for one was aghast that they would publish slander and call it news.
If you need a remedy for having read misinformation in the AP, please see Michael Foust’s excellent piece in today’s Baptist Press: “Two Rivers Baptist Church members voice dissent, pastor seeks reconciliation.” If you have no idea what I’m talking about, please disregard all of the preceding. I think it brings shame on the cause of the gospel that any of this was made public in the first place.