On Troubling The “Top Men”

. . . criticism of certain leaders of evangelicalism who seek to exert massive influence in the evangelical world but who eschew proper accountability to that world is not identical with criticism of God’s people tout court. It is specifically criticism of a leadership and a leadership culture which considers itself in practice accountable to nobody but itself and those to whom it chooses to listen, and which seeks to control the flow of news in such a way that, once the Top Men have agreed to the story, any dissent from that story can be dismissed as the mean-minded and malicious ranting of the envious and excluded. That is a typical ploy used by unaccountable leadership in all spheres, from the political through to the religious: identify any specific criticism of the leadership as general criticism of the whole and then treat it as detrimental to the common good. To quote a certain leader from biblical times, ‘Is that you, you troubler of Israel?’

And that is why, as long as there are unaccountable but powerful leaders out there who take advantage of the decent, honest evangelical people who fund the operation (and lots of whom attend the churches where many of us minister week by week), we have to hope that there will be those who can neither be bought nor bullied but who will continue to point this sorry fact out to all who will listen.

— Carl Trueman, “For Those Who Don’t—Or Won’t”—Quite Get It

    Post authored by:

  • R. Scott Clark
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    R.Scott Clark is the President of the Heidelberg Reformation Association, the author and editor of, and contributor to several books and the author of many articles. He has taught church history and historical theology since 1997 at Westminster Seminary California. He has also taught at Wheaton College, Reformed Theological Seminary, and Concordia University. He has hosted the Heidelblog since 2007.

    More by R. Scott Clark ›

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