A Recent Article

On Monday afternoon I went down to fetch my mail and I was delighted to see the August edition of Christianity Today at the bottom of the pile.  Brushing off the junk mail, I saw that my Mom was on the cover.  I already knew she was going to be featured in one of the coming editions but I’ve found there is very little by way of preparation for a moment like this one.  It is difficult to describe to you the feeling of seeing the face of the one who bore you on the cover of a magazine.  I do not mean this in a pompous way because it is not a feeling of pride.  It is a feeling of great sobriety.

During that moment the butterflies in my stomach were akin to the ones fluttering around on the day my Mom spoke during chapel hour when I was a sophomore at Baylor University.  Or the evening Mom spoke at Founder’s Week during my first year as a transfer student at Moody Bible Institute.  I have, on numerous occasions, watched Mom speak in venues with 20,000+ people and it not even fazed me but these two gatherings were different. The events at Baylor and Moody were composed of a whole bunch of people I knew, people I loved and respected.   Mom’s been in a bunch of magazines over the years.  But Christianity Today is the one and only Christian magazine I actually read.  Although “they” don’t know me from Eve, I feel like I know them.  I laugh with them, cry with them, “amen” with them, and I even argue back and forth with them.  These folks are supposed to be my friends, right? So this time when I picked up the magazine it was a little bit different.  It hit closer to home.

It was a little bit more vulnerable.

You may think that it is the fear of criticism that is so sobering about a moment like this one, yet that is not exactly true. Sure, criticism is tough but far worse is the momentary thought that, for better or worse, I sit as a passive observer while my Mom’s value is being weighed under the critical scrutiny of a bunch of my peers and professors.  Please understand what I am saying, even if the responses are exuberant and laudatory in nature, it is the careful scrutiny of a parent that is the rub.  It is, of course, also a significant part of the life God has graciously and providentially given to me. And His tenderness never fails me in moments like these.

As I held the magazine in my hand, the daughter in me said, “Proceed with caution. You might get hurt.” But the student in me said, “Come on, Melissa. There are no questions that are off limits. No one is above question, observation, or criticism.”  Eventually I mustered the courage, put on my cloak of “objectivity,” and took the plunge.

As I made my way through the first article, I found I could understand or identify with the bulk of it.  I saw my Mom represented on the pages in more than just photographs, and whether the words were kind or critical, I found them to be fair. Again, no one is above careful observation because we all err in many ways.  We all need each other to get this thing right.  Even I, the biased observer, can recognize that much.  Christianity Today’s ability to represent a diverse set of viewpoints is the primary reason I read their work in the first place. There are very few voices left out of their articles and conversations and that spirit of diversity contributes, I think, to an overall appreciation of the richness and variety in the church, even if it is mostly the evangelical church that is represented.

So as I finished the last sentence of the first article I took a deep breath.  “It’s over and I’m still alive,” I thought.

Just kidding. It really wasn’t all that rough.

But I had yet to read the second article.

As I began to read the second article entitled “First Came the Bible,” some things started to become a bit opaque for me.  I do not want to get too pedantic and I certainly do not want to bore you all to tears, so I’ll get to my point.  And at this point you’re hoping I have one, right?  Wink. What troubled me most about the second article was a paragraph that purports the following (again, this can be found in the August edition of Christianity Today on page 27):

Moore is truly a Bible teacher.  Her teaching is rooted in her strong affinity for Scripture.  She does not show much interest in theology or tradition, distrusting the way the academy has, at times, handled the Bible. “Godless philosophies have not been my temptation,” Moore comments.  “In my life experience, the most dangerously influential opinions have been those held by intellectuals and scholars who profess Christianity but deny the veracity and present power of Scripture.”  Although Moore believes that seminaries are necessary despite the “stunning arrogance” and “theological snobbery” that reside in them, she argues, “Psalm 131 reminds us that [the Scriptures] are not primarily for seminaries, dissertations, and theological treatments.  They are primarily for everyday living on the third rock from the sun (27).

As I began to read through this paragraph, something just did not sit right with me.  The first half sounded sort of like Mom but the language was peculiar and the harsh indictment against seminaries took me by surprise. I assumed that if Mom said such a thing about the pride and arrogance of the theological and/or seminary world, she was most likely speaking about me.  And frankly, it would have been warranted.  I was one single theology class into my education when I began anathematizing every Christian I knew, including my Mom, Dad, Pastor . . . And I could go on.  So, in light of my own interests and experience, I began to wonder where these quotes were pulled from and the context in which Mom stated them.

Even though I am intimately acquainted with Mom’s writing and speaking, I still didn’t know where exactly these quotes originated.  I came to find that, to the best of my knowledge, the various pieces were pulled from Believing God (the trade book) and Stepping Up (the bible study).  The first quote, “Godless philosophies have not been my temptation. In my life experience, the most dangerously influential opinions have been those held by intellectuals and scholars who profess Christianity but deny the veracity and present power of Scripture,” was pulled from Believing God. Although the quote is fairly clear in isolation, when you read the immediate context carefully, you find that Mom has tempered her claim by statements such as “Thankfully, many churches and Christian institutes of higher learning teach the God of Scripture, but why do so many others default to a lesser-God theology?” and even stronger, “Flawless churches and Christian universities don’t exist because they are full of flawed people just like me.” Should you be interested in reading further please look in and around pages 47-50 of the Believing God book, not the bible study workbook.

I think you will find that Mom is not writing about her hostility toward “the academy” (a term that needs to be clarified in the article itself) but the tendency in all of us to minimize God in our pursuit of the knowledge of Him.  Mom presents academic institutions as the most influential place where this minimizing can be found, but very clearly acknowledges that the tendency is not to be limited to the academic world, or even descriptive of the academic world.

The second quote is far more bothersome because it implies that Mom only reluctantly admits that seminaries have any value. After a bit of searching I made my way from Believing God to Stepping Up because of the author’s mention of Psalm 131, a Psalm of Ascent.  None of these sources are referenced in this particular paragraph in the article, by the way, which made these “quotes” really *fun* and convenient to track down.  Please raise your hand if you think magazines should abide by Turabian! Thank you, nerds of the blogworld.  I’m going to quote the second part of the paragraph from the article “First Came the Bible” again:

Although Moore believes that seminaries are necessary despite the “stunning arrogance” and “theological snobbery” that reside in them, she argues, “Psalm 131 reminds us that [the Scriptures] are not primarily for seminaries, dissertations, and theological treatments.  They are primarily for everyday living on the third rock from the sun (27).

First, the way the author has set up the quote is nothing short of misleading.  Mom has never said that she believes seminaries are necessary despite the “stunning arrogance” and “theological snobbery” that reside in them.  Instead, the author has combined snippets of three different portions of text from Stepping Up. When the order has been changed and all three snippets are worded together, they, at the very least, produce an exaggerated claim. At the very worst, they produce a disfigured one.

If you would like to see this clearly for yourself, you can consult Week 5 Day 3 of Stepping Up and make your own conclusions about the way the quotes were construed.  For those of you who do not have the workbook, I have also typed a large part of the text myself and included it here so that you can get an idea of what is going on.   There are various breaks in the text because I don’t have time to type all of Day 3. I have, however, typed quite a bit of it. I figure the more context I can give you, the better. You can tell where the author of the magazine article is drawing the quote by the text I have in both bold and italics.  Week 5 Day 3 is entitled “Things Too Great” and it is a study of Psalm 131, one of the shortest of the Psalms of Ascent:  A Song of Ascents, of David. O Lord, my heart is not proud, nor my eyes haughty; Nor do I involve myself in great matters, Or in things too difficult for me.  2 Surely I have composed and quieted my soul; Like a weaned child rests against his mother, My soul is like a weaned child within me.  3 O Israel, hope in the LORD From this time forth and forever.

I am now going to begin quoting Mom starting from the top of page 131 in Stepping Up:

“Like so many in the Gospels, the metaphors of the psalms came from common scenes and experiences in the daily lives of God’s people.

  • Psalm 126 pictured seeds watered by tears turning to sheaves of joy.
  • Psalm 127 sketched sons, like arrows in a quiver, defending their father.
  • Psalm 128 centered on the family table with moms like fruitful vines and children like olive shoots.
  • Psalm 129 drew us the unforgettable picture of plowmen leaving furrows on the backs of the oppressed.
  • Psalm 130 painted the image of a night watchman on a city wall.

God drew each metaphor from a common sight seen by a common people. Perhaps no sight was more ordinary than the one etched in Psalm 131, particularly as throngs of Israelites made their pilgrimage to Jerusalem three times a year. It’s the same common sight I see every time I go shopping: a child in a mother’s arms.

Psalm 131 reminds us the words of God are not primarily for seminaries, dissertations, and theological treatments. They are primarily for everyday living on the third rock from the sun. The words of God are for people who run late to work, hop out of the car, and spill coffee on their crisp, white shirt. It’s for people who run to get their trash to the curb before the garbage truck comes and end up strewing it all over the driveway. It’s for people who need to change the litter box and who realize something green and furry is growing in their fridge. The words of God are for people whose neighbors drive them nuts. And mainly, I suppose, for people who drive themselves nuts. Like me. Maybe like you.

If you’ve concluded that Scripture is for how you do church, teachers like me have failed you. Scripture is for how you do life, whether at home, at work or on a date, at a baby shower, at a funeral, or at church. Scripture is for servicemen defending their nation and for mothers nursing their babies…if they can keep their eyes open. Today we will be wholly preoccupied with the first verse of Psalm 131, and actually, we’ll have to work diligently to limit ourselves to this space.”

[Break in text & some interactive questions]

“The term ‘haughty comes from the word high’ and in the context of eyes it describes people who look down on others. Of course, none of us is going to immediately admit, ‘That’s me!’

We recognize snobbery and pride pretty easily in others and despise nothing more. Somehow when we are the snob, however, the thin air at the altitude where we keep our noses impairs our judgment. The Bible tells us that God abhors pride and probably for no few reasons. Both you and I have had tug-of-wars with God – however ridiculous and futile – that revolved around our pride.”

[Break in text for an interactive question]

“Since I made you answer such an exposing question, I’ll offer a few reasons of my own. I am convinced that my pride over a specific matter was a tremendous contribution to the horrifying sifting season God put me through a few years ago.

I also think God cannot bring the kingdom increase to our harvests that He desires (John 15:7) until our egos decrease.

Finally, I think our pride is a strobe light flashing how ignorant we are about God, despite our lengthy quiet times and in-depth studies. Above all things besides love, humility is the truest sign of intimacy with God. Like little else, a humble spirit says we really do ‘get it.’

Though Psalm 131:1 certainly applies to haughtiness and pride in general, when we consider the congregational aspect of the Psalms of Ascent, I think a tighter interpretation may be what we could call theological pride: arrogance regarding God, His words, or ways.

Stunning arrogance slithers down the halls of many academic institutions of theology. Thankfully, some professors are wise enough to slam their office doors and refuse to let the snake bite them, but they must be overtly intentional to resist a lure as old as the garden.

I wish the problem of theological snobbery only resided at institutions of higher learning, but it doesn’t. Every one of us, until life pummels us into knowing better, is drawn to things that feed our flesh and make us feel smart.

Reflect on the words of Psalm 131 again: I do not get involved with things to great or too difficult for me.”  I think this verse could very well refer to times when we get our big heads into matters we know nothing about- times we have the gall to speak for God or explain His actions when a wiser person would have kept their mouth shut. God has a fitting expression for it.”

[Break in text for interactives, etc]

“Obviously God is not saying that we are never to offer possible explanations for the deeper things of Scripture and its divine Author.  Furthermore we most assuredly need higher institutions of theology and well-trained professors.  And a good debate between them can be tremendously insightful.

So, where’s the line?  How do we know when a matter is too great for us? Deuteronomy 29:29 may offer the best example.”

[Break in text for Interactive and several paragraphs]

“Over and over Scripture attests that God can do no wrong.  It also blatantly assures us He is sovereign and could stop any  ill.  How can I make those ends meet?  I can’t . . . but God can and one day will.  Between His arms that seem at times outstretched in opposite directions, you will find His heart.  Out of the ashes of the unfathomable, sooner than later Lazarus-faith must rise from the dead- questions still unanswered- or the Devil has won.  Perhaps Anselm, an eleventh-century English monk, voiced an approach that draws today’s lesson to the best conclusion:

I do not seek, O Lord, to penetrate thy depths.  I by no means think my intellect equal to them: but I long to understand in some degree thy truth, which my heart believes and loves.  For I do not seek to understand that I may believe, but I believe that I may understand.”

End of quote.

Please note that the chunks of text the author pieces together are not in consecutive order and her summary does not include the necessary qualifications to do honest justice to Mom’s writing.   One primary example is that she pulls the phrase, “theological snobbery” from its immediate context where Mom has clearly qualified her statement to encompass not just institutions of higher learning BUT “every one of us.” This is a very real misuse of Mom’s work.  Again snippets of quotations from Stepping Up have been combined to create a new meaning, one that Mom herself does not support.  Various qualifications that Mom made in the text have been ignored or left out of the article.  Another example is the author’s use of the word “despite” to head the sentence.  Although the word “despite” is not in quotations (signaling that Mom herself did not say or write it), it is misleading as a header for the entire quote.  On the contrary, when Mom wrote, “Furthermore, we most assuredly need higher institutions of theology and well-trained professors.  And a good debate between them can be tremendously insightful,” her words are accompanied by an enthusiastic tone, not a reluctant one like the author inserts.

While Mom’s use of biblical and theological scholarship may fail to meet this author’s standard, it does not necessarily follow that Mom’s voice echoes Tertullian’s famous cry: What has Athens to do with Jerusalem?  What communion is there between the academy and the church?” The chasm between Mom’s faith and intellectual inquiry is surely not as wide as this author asserts.  If you read the text from Week 5 Day 3 that I recorded above, you might have noticed Mom’s quotation of Anselm at the end: I believe, that I may understand.”  Anselm’s maxim is a basic motto in many Christian academic institutions, for it has often been identified as the appropriate bridge between the church and academic inquiry.

I would hardly find it significant enough to mention this misuse of Mom’s work, if I did not also think that it misrepresented Mom’s heart on the matter. Unlike Amanda, I was never interviewed by the folks who wrote these articles. So in brief, I want to say what I would have told them if I had been:  Mom has, more than anyone, stimulated my passion for academic study of the Bible. I will never forget the day she called me from Oxford University in England.  I could hear her voice breaking over the sea that stood between us as she described to me how inspiring it was to walk on a campus that had been a home to so many great minds.  She has been a constant support during my entire theological education- spiritually, emotionally, and financially.

From the semester I first learned about the JEDP theory in my Old Testament class at Baylor, to my transfer to Moody Bible Institute’s Bible department and even on through my days as a little metaphorical P.O.W. in the Biblical Exegesis Program at Wheaton Graduate School.  When I hadn’t slept forty eight hours straight because I was up late writing yet another exegesis paper or reading Calvin’s Institutes, she reminded me why I was going to school in the first place- in her words, “ to get your feet planted firmly on the ground (biblically & theologically), with your hands raised straight up in the air.”  She was also the one who taught me my first great piece of hermeneutical advice, “If you’re completely alone in your interpretation of a certain verse, then you’re most likely wrong.”  Apparently her mentor, Buddy Walters, had passed that one down.  I’ve never forgotten it all these years. Even more stunning and meaningful to me has been Mom’s love and support for me over this past year when I completed a Th.M. in New Testament at a PCUSA seminary that assumes a completely different doctrine of Scripture than she does.  She has been my primary dialogue partner in this quest and brave enough to support me in my theological journey even when it has gone beyond her own theological comfort zone.  Now, Mom is certainly not an academic in the technical sense, but equally true is that she is no mocker or skeptic of the academic world. Mom not only rests on the work of many academics in her research, but she goes to great lengths to express her great indebtedness to them along the way.  Academics who spend each day in the pedantic little details of exegetical methodology and at the same time love God with all their hearts are Mom’s heroes.

Well, as you can imagine I called Mom to speak with her about the article as soon as I closed the final page.  I said, “So what did you think?”  She replied, “They were kinder than they had to be.  And I learned a lot.” I said, “You learned a lot? Seriously?”  Apparently she learned a lot.  Now that is just vintage Mom.  I told her that although I was moved by her humility, I was also troubled by this little paragraph in the second article. While, I too, think being teachable is a virtue, I also wonder if there is not an appropriate time to express some concern about what may appear to be a misunderstanding of Mom’s work.  Only once someone is properly understood should he or she be criticized.

It seems to me that for the most part using criticism constructively would imply that the criticism is legitimate and in this particular case, I do not think it is.  Even if I got this all wrong and Mom very coincidentally said these exact words in another work or speaking engagement, I would not find them to be warranted in a discussion of the four fundamental themes that are threaded throughout all of Mom’s writing.  The reason I felt burdened to write this blog for you is that I think you deserve to know that Mom, and so also Living Proof Ministries, tremendously respects and makes regular use of trustworthy biblical scholarship. Now, I, would argue until my dying breath precisely what Mom said about Scripture being for everyday living and not primarily for the academic world.  But does that undermine my passion for biblical and theological scholarship?  I don’t think it does.

We love you and esteem you enough to carefully walk through something that could be confusing.


449 Responses to “A Recent Article”

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  1. 51
    Amy Warfield says:

    Thank you Melissa for taking the time to write this blog post and to clarify truth about your mom. It is staggering how putting phrases together that a person said can make a reader come to a certain conclusion. Makes me realize how we should all be soberly reading articles, whether they be in the newspaper or internet–to make sure we discern a truth and an error spoken, or inferred, about someone.

    And I totally agree with you, your mom like none other–has been a teacher that has challenged me to dive into the deep truths and intricacies of scripture with commentary, hebrew and greek words, and great biblical scholarship–all the while loving Jesus and just desiring to behold His great worth and beauty in the scriptures. In fact, I believe she was the first teacher I had to use hebrew and greek words while teaching–so increased a great love for the word, and the complexity and astounding brilliance of how God put it together.

    Thank you again for your thoughts, always so welcome. Blessings!

  2. 52
    Ginger/Silver Sass says:

    Kudos for you Melissa for taking the time to process, and DEFEND, the truth. Not just because Beth is your Mom, but because the writer did not represent the complete truth. This frustrates me. As believers, it is our responsibility to represent Christ in our own little “dark corners of the world” in spite of our ugly and human selves. Do we always do a job worthy of our Father…..goodness gracious NO!!!!!!! But, if we are going to send out something that so many people have access to, then for goodness sake, do it well and be careful about how you say something and how you represent something!!!!! “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.” Col 3:23

    Blessings to you all!

    Wetumpka, AL

  3. 53
    Eposi says:

    THANK you SO MUCH for this, Melissa. I will admit that I am shamelessly biased towards Ms Beth. After being under her teaching for some years now, I can attest that she was misrepresented by this article but could never have skillfully explained it as you did. I appreciate your honest approach to the whole thing. It doesn’t come accross as someone who is simply trying to defend her mom. And from what little I know of your mom she is not one to campaign for defenders either. That is just one of the reasons I love her so much.

    I know she would not approve of this but I get a little ticked if someone says something negative about her (esp something I am sure is unfounded). But I have gotten better about my attitude in that area. To be sure, it is not that I think she is above erring. None of us are.

    Well, I guess I will just keep that little “piece of my mind” that I wanted to dish out to myself (afterall I need every piece I’ve got :)). I am so grateful for you three and proud to have you all for sisters.


    • 53.1
      Melissa says:

      He gorgeous! Great to see your comment! Hope all is well in your world!

      • Eposi says:

        Hey beautiful! Yes, all is well with me. I was hoping to see you last Saturday and hug your neck as I did the other LPM staff members, but I guess that will just have to wait until we meet again.

  4. 54
    Madelin Butler says:

    I hope that you send the post to the editor. I stand up and offer a hand clap of Praise for your thoughtful and well researched set the record straight post. We know what sounds like our faithful teacher and what does not.

    I love you Moores more than you know. ;)) I thank God for you and remember you in my prayers continually. Your Mom and our Siesta Mamma Beth remains my “Shero” in the faith.
    May God Richly Bless You,
    Siesta Maddy

    • 54.1
      Siesta OC says:

      Shero – I love that!

    • 54.2
      Yanna says:

      I agree with Maeline, send the blog website to the editor, or maybe ALL of us Siesta’s should just send it in an email link ha ha ha. One thing about the article, it allowed us to see the woman you are. Wow what an incredible writer, how bursting with pride I would be if I were your mom, how bursting with pride that I am your siesta and sister in Him, and you go girl is all I could think I can only imagine how pleased our Father is in you, His warrior. “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

      • Yanna says:

        oops…I agree with Madeline (when are they going to get spell check for blogs?) Ha ha

      • Rebecca says:

        I totally agree!!!! Can you tell this has upset me 😉

        • Rebecca says:

          Ok this is my last response. I need to take a chill pill on this issue. If there is anything to learn it is this for me especially.
          Words can hurt.
          If everyone stood up for what they believe we still maybe say prayers in schools. (etc)
          I have learned several new words. I just need to know where to place them.
          Melissa you are a strong daughter in the good way.
          Beth you are so loved….

  5. 55
    Lyli Dunbar says:

    Anyone who has done a study that your mom has produced knows that she does her homework and has great respect for seminary scholarship. Besides that, you are living proof that she does — your life testifies, Melissa.

    I think you would make a great investigative reporter. 🙂

  6. 56
    God's not-so-little Dutch girl says:


    Thank you for sharing this with us. As it has been stated by many of the other Siestas, those of us who have studied with your mom and “know” her know where her heart is. You did a wonderful job clarifiying everything, even though I had to look up some of the words you used. I get defensive when someone criticizes your mom and they have taken things out of context. I love all of the Moore girls! Have a great weekend, Siestas!

  7. 57
    alice says:

    Thank you for this, Melissa. As a writer for a magazine, (I actually recently wrote an article about your mom, here: http://www.sl50.org/magazine/archive/goodbye/) you encourage me to be so careful with my words–whether I’m writing words of praise or words of critique.

    And on a side note, you’ve been super-gracious about this and done careful research. If I thought someone misrepresented my mom, I’d just punch them in the neck. 😉

  8. 58
    Jodi says:

    I can so relate to your passion to defend someone who has been misrepresented. If I had read the article itself I would never have believed she was really quoted there. Just so “not Miss Beth”. My first thought would have been, the author must not have been really listening. Thankfully, your mom has been so transparent with us for so long, that we know authentic Beth and can see when its not her words. Still…I wonder if part of what she learned is…ouch, again, obey the Lord, be real, then become a public figure, then become a target, then lay it on the altar, and repeat. Thanks for the post and thank your mom for the sacrifice. I know it means a ton that her daughter loves her enough to defend her.

  9. 59
    Elisabeth says:

    Melissa, you have put into words the exact array of emotions and jumbled thoughts I’ve been feeling since I read that article myself. I was not able to keep myself level and objective. I simply wanted to call up the author and give them a not-so-little piece of my biased heart and mind. And that is coming from a 27 year old who’s spent significant time in BOTH theology school and studying almost everything your mom’s written and spoken. Here’s the funny part…..
    It was a number of things your mom said that inspired me to pick up my life and move to another state for some deep theology education. And along the way, at school, I began to realize FROM THE TEACHINGS OF MY PROFESSORS, that I have always had a tendency to view the scriptures as something incredible and mysterious, which were to be searched and studied in order to better understand the things of God. And that I had never realized the extent of scripture being so real and so given to us for our daily lives. Upon returning home from school, I’ve spend the last few years learning just all that means from your mom. (I’m smiling because I’m sitting here with a spiral in my lap as I speak.) My point to all is to say that your mother was the one who inspired me to go get a solid, higher theological education, AND it was Beth who the Lord used to speak my language and get under my skin about scripture and God and His truths being so absolutely for my everyday life. On absolutely every angle, she has taught and presented things solid and well-grounded. And true. Yep, she’s human. But “she dun good.” In every way. I love her deeply.

  10. 60
    Nancy says:

    Oh, Melissa. I love your heart and mind. Somehow, I think you would have had the same things to say even if the article was about someone other than your mother. Your defense of the truth is inspiring.

    A quote that comes to my mind (and I can’t remember the context in which it was spoken, so I may be taking it way out of context myself!) that I heard your mother say is, “Never argue with a Pharisee.” Indeed, you have not argued at all, but clearly, intelligently, courageously and with great sensitivity, shown them the way.

    I used to lead women’s Bible studies in my home, mostly for women at church. A few other non-church ladies came too. We did a lot of Beth’s studies, but I made a point never to do two of hers in a row. I always tried to use other writers too so as not to limit our exposure. Still, we did a lot of Beth’s stuff over the years and it changed my life and my relationship with Jesus. Things change, you know, and our church got a new pastor. At that time we were just beginning a new Beth study (I can’t remember which one) and I invited the new pastor’s wife to join us. The response I got from her broke my heart. She had nothing good to say about your mother or any of her studies. The new pastor felt the same way and made sure I knew it. I’ve never ever met your mother and yet I felt like I myself had been beaten up. I carried on with that study anyway, but have since given up trying to do any more. We live in a very small town where people, well, I won’t go there… At any rate, the whole thing has me caught up in the “if you can’t say anything nice, then don’t say anything at all” mode. So I’ve been silent for a long time. As I started out saying, reading your words is inspiring and maybe brought me one step closer to finding my voice again.

    Thanks for sharing. Do it more often.

  11. 61
    Rebecca says:

    Hi Melissa and Beth,

    Thank you Melissa for the clarification on the stories.

    I brought this artcle to the attention of the siestas when my copy of the magazine arrived. I was so excited to learn more about your mom.

    I am relatively new to this blog and some articles come back in point and I don’t know what is going on. BUT this article in the magazine had my back up. I read it once and was angry and then I read it AGAIN and thought this can’t be. So I am very glad you have written this post.

    I feel bad for pointing out that your mom was on the cover when the article portrayed her in this light. Each magazine carries its own slant and I am aware that by reading this magazine there have been several articles that don’t sit well with other readers. In fact if the siestas want they can post a comment on the magazines’ site to disagree with what they have read.

    I am glad you have stood up for your mom. I would have definitely done the same thing.

    I am a thinker and I listen to Beth as much as possible. Why can’t the magazine just do the “facts”? It is no wonder you want the questions they ask first, to peruse before the interview. I now can understand keeping them out of your mom’s office. Somethings are private and don’t need to be tainted.

    I respect you Melissa and Beth very much. If I sound harsh or angry I am sorry, but they got my shackles up!!!

    Love you both

  12. 62
    Forever His says:

    Melissa, I am truly amazed every time I read what you have written. I only wish I could articulate my thoughts as you do. You remind me of your mother (only she is a bit funnier!) in the way you write. Beautiful.

    Your mother, as well as LPM, are very blessed indeed to have someone of your caliber looking out for them. Thank you for your insight and for allowing me to re-live the words from Stepping Up. I loved it when I did it and I love it now.

    Looking forward to the new Bible study and seeing more from you.

    Praying, as always, for all of you at LPM. I love you all.


  13. 63
    Lisa says:

    Melissa, my affinity for your mom and her teaching came out of left field. I took the Jesus the One and Only Bible study when I first started attending my church 6 years ago. Never did I expect to embrace her teaching as wholeheartedly as I have. Once I moved past just being enamored by her teaching gift and how she broke Scripture wide open for me, I started to think more in terms of her as a wife, mother, and student herself. It took me a few years, but this is primarily how I view her now, because I am a wife and mother myself. If I saw my own mother under constant scrutiny like your mom, it would eat away at me. I’ve often wondered how you and Amanda endure it. I treasure my mom so much and can’t even try to put myself in your shoes, because I don’t imagine they’re enviable shoes to fill when your loved ones are being put front and center all the time, either in affirming or attacking ways. I would think, as you hinted at, that either extreme would be difficult. I know I would always be on guard myself.

    I need to remember that the authors of these articles, as well as those out in the blog world who go after your mom, are people as much as she is, and as much as you and I are. I wonder why so many of us human beings feel so comfortable crossing the line from questioning to attacking. I wonder how much differently these individuals would begin to think if they stopped and pondered how they would feel if their loved ones were held up to constant and very public scrutiny. Somehow, I think their tunes would change.

    I’ll admit, I spent a lot of time with God after I began to regularly read your mom’s books and listen to her audiocasts. I didn’t want to be guilty of idolatry. I felt convicted about spending so little time with other teachers of the Word. While I feel that He confirmed that I should not rely on the teachings of one person alone, never for a moment have I doubted your mom’s authenticity and genuineness (but I have most definitely questioned it in others, myself included).

    Yes, there are a whole lot of us who love your mom, but I know we could never love her the way you and your sister do. This is always in the back of my mind when I read anything concerning your mom; ‘What would Melissa and Amanda think of this?’ Bless you. You do your mom proud. I wish I were an eighth as articulate and eloquent as you are.

  14. 64
    Karen says:

    I’m perplexed. I definitely appreciate your impassioned defense of your mom. By and large anyone reading your post will already have a very high regard for your mother, as do I. And yes, the out of context content you site sounds very unlike your mom so people who are familiar with her work would be confused and will appreciate your putting all of it in appropriate context. But – and I’m sorry to sound unkind – it doesn’t seem a whole lot better for you to quote this article directly by posting the “second paragraph” without citing the source. What magazine are you writing about? Who wrote this article? Or am I just so blind that you have included this information in your post and I’ve just completely missed it. If so, I apologize. I’d like to read the article in its entirety myself. I’ve googled the title of the article you cite but can’t come up with the it. So please set me straight or tell me where to find this article. Thanks.

    • 64.1
      Melissa says:

      Karen, I tried to reply back to you so forgive me if this is a duplicate post. I had referenced the title of the article as “First Came the Bible” but then just went back to clarify that it is the August Edition of Christianity Today. And you didn’t sound unkind. I should have clarified it. Thanks for posting.

      • Karen says:

        I did get your email, Melissa. Thanks. I thought it was probably Christianity Today but looking at their website still wasn’t turning up the article. I’ll look some more. Thanks for clarifying!!!

  15. 65
    Evie says:

    Hi Melissa, I too have been infuenced by your mom’s books as far as seeking after God with all my heart! I love that advice “if you’re completely alone in your interpretation of a certain verse, then you’re most likely wrong.”!!

    Thanks for the clarification in case I come across this article. I appreciate all of you; love ya’ll 🙂

  16. 66
    Terrie says:

    I am sadden by the fact that you even had to write this blog. I am so thankful that you did to clear up any misunderstanding that Satan may have used to undermine the ministry God called upon your sweet momma decades ago. Proverbs 31 tells us that one day our children will rise up and call their mom blessed. Your mom is blessed!!

  17. 67
    Roxanne Worsham says:


    Thank you for taking the time to clarify. I know you know that you do not need to defend your mother. Her ministry speaks for itself and there is a whole lot of GOD coming from Beth Moore that reaches people all over this world. Unfortunately, there are naysayers and people who just want to make Christian people of influence look bad. Yes, even under the guise of a Christian magazine.

    Wouldn’t it be great if the BODY of CHRIST joined forces to edify and build one another up instead of being so quick to judge their brothers and sisters and knock them down? That is just a trick and lie of the ol’ ancient one who comes to kill, steal, and destroy.

    I like to arm myself with information and the truth. I thank you for the article because I am sure I will get plenty of those naysayers saying to me, “Roxanne, did you see what Beth Moore said about seminaries?” Everybody in my inner and outer circle knows how much I admire and respect your mom’s ministry and how the LORD used her to catapult me into my own ministry with Him! I, too, get to teach women!! I will be happy to lovingly point out that those quotes were pulled out of context and not the whole magellan!!

    I will pray for peace for you and your whole family. God will use this to bring Him honor and glory and also use it to better His children.

    Carry on, faithful servants of the MOST HIGH GOD!!!!
    Philippians 1:3

  18. 68
    Shalom says:

    Well Melissa, first off, I was at Baylor that day and at the Methodist Church that night. Your intro to your mom was so touching, in many ways you remind me of my youngest daughter. As to the article, while I must first admit I have not read it, I have read just about all your mother’s work. In no way has she ever come across as critical of academia. She does however call it like it is! Now the truth as I have known it is that seminaries and many other higher education institutions are arrogant and intolerant. I think many highly educated people have made the education their god (idol) just like some do money, people, ect. and believe that all wisdom is theirs alone. I believe God’s Word tells us to glory in the fact our names are written in God’s Book of Life, rather than the fact that there are lots of letters behind our name. I wonder if God will include those letters in His book ( I doubt it). I love to learn, never having had the means to fund an education, I have read about everything I can get my hands on. I LOVE LEARNING, and I could be one of those who let it be my god if I were not really careful. I also know human nature and very very few people can write without prejudice. The person who wrote this article shows their bias very clearly and obviously is defensive about education. This article however proves just what the article purports your mother to have said. Those who have read or heard your mother are not likely to misunderstand her unless they are just wanting to. She is well and clearly spoken, without hidden agenda. We cannot however do anything about others who will deliberately “misunderstand” and misquote. Your love of your mother is touching, however, you my darling girl are next in line. Like your mama, learn from what they say, look deep into your heart as there is often (not always) a little bit of truth to be found. And then look to the perfect Law of liberty which has been engrafted into your heart and soul, and live there. Live there, not in the light of your critics……. The LORD shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things.Psalms 12:2 ………….THOU shalt hide them in the secret of THY presence from the pride of man, THOU shalt keep them secretly in a pavillion from the strife of tongues.Psalms 31:19-21 Dixie.

  19. 69
    Linda Peel says:

    I can only imagine how hard this must have been for you to read. Those of us that KNOW Beth KNOW her heart. She brings us closer to God through the study of His WORD and desires only glory for GOD, none for herself. It is an added bonus that she is HILARIOUS to boot. I wrote a post on my blog about “Don’t Drink the Koolaid” referencing my trip to Houston for the SSMT Celebration and was shocked by a comment from a man who evidently “googles” all things Beth and tried to “open my eyes” regarding her. He obviously DOES NOT KNOW Beth or her heart. Know that we LOVE all the Moores . I am so sorry that your mom was misrepresented in print.

    Love, Linda

  20. 70
    Faith says:

    Thank you so much for this post! I hadn’t seen the article but reading the part you quoted, I found myself thinking, “What?! That doesn’t sound like Beth at all!” Sad that she got misrepresented in such a major publication, but I hope many will see this article to have a better understanding of your mom’s views and heart on the matter.

  21. 71
    Jessica says:

    Thanks for setting the record straight, Melissa. Although, those of us who are familiar enough with your mom know she’s passionate about good theology and that she’s humble and would never intend to be malicious to Biblical scholars. Sigh. The press is maddening sometimes.
    It must be SO HARD to be in the public eye – so many opportunities to be misunderstood and judged and criticized. Talk about a chance to learn how to keep one’s heart clean!

  22. 72
    Linda says:

    Melissa, excellently stated. Thank you for writing this clarification for all of us that love your mom and her family!!

  23. 73
    Beth Herring says:

    Melissa – that was a great post my sweet friend. I am glad that you took the time to gracefully take us into the depths of the article and the context behind the comments.

    Your mom – sweet Beth – has been THE biggest influence on my Christian walk ever. She has instilled a deep hunger and thirst in my soul for the Word. I think she is one fabulous woman of God and is the epitome of humility and authenticity. God has used her mightily and she has held herself high in being confident in who she is in Christ and she never is anything but gracious and real with us.

    You and Amanda are such wonderful young women and I know that God is going to continue to do amazing things through you both.

    Beth Herring

  24. 74
    Anne says:

    Brava, Melissa!

    It seems sometimes that the church cannot find a balance between two extremes. Either we dismiss formal theological training as unimportant, or we place education (and human reason)on an idolatrous pedestal. I suspect the writer of the article misrepresented your mom’s ideas because he or she did not fully understand them. I am praying that I won’t sound arrogant about this because, the truth is, there is a certain amount of “heart-humiliation” necessary to learn that God meant for us to make use of human reason, but He never meant for us to trust it. Doctrinal truths can become everyday practice, but only when our confidence is in God.

    This is what I have learned from your mother’s teaching. I have learned that all my life I have loved God with my mind, but that I do not altogether know how to love Him with my heart. I do know that both must be engaged, or all the knowledge in the world will profit me nothing.

  25. 75
    Deborah Menning says:

    Thank you, Beth, for this lovely homage to your English teacher. I recently retired from full time college teaching–English, of course. Because I still teach a few classes each year, your words are inspiration to keep on keepin’ on, i.e. to continue loving on my students and doing my utmost to help them know the Lord loves on them way more than I ever could.

    It’s such a blessing to teach at a Christian college where we are mandated to integrate faith with learning. If only I could have more of His Shekinah glory shine from my face rather than being “the greatest of sinners” like Paul. Thank you for the many Bible studies you’ve written that help me move toward the Light and away from the true darkness of my depraved nature. Thank you for taking time to write about your teacher.

    Oh, I’m supposed to be writing about a person who inspired me, but there are so many! From Mrs. Waddell, who taught French with zeal and professionalism, to Miss Oleson, who allowed us to write and enact plays based on our history studies, to Mr. English, a terrific history teacher, and on down the list to Mr. Bannister, who nurtured my desire to teach by allowing me to be his work study assistant, the Lord blessed me with a variety of personalities and teaching styles from which to learn about my passion: teaching young adults. I must also mention my dear friend, colleague, and mentor, Barbara Turnwall. Barb saw a need among college profs that usually goes unaddressed: ability to teach (or lack thereof). Too often, we are simply scholars with no experience with engaging students actively with the material we love automatically. Barb created the “Pedagogy Project,” a year-long seminar in the practice of teaching. We read some incredible books (Teaching with Your Mouth Shut comes quickly to mind) and were challenged to jump start our teaching with out-of-the-box methods. The Pedagogy Project thrust me from burned-out-Betty to re-energized Bunny! Thankfully, the project caught on and has hosted over 50 faculty to date. Now, on semester course evaluations, students have been known to write “Professor Doe needs to take the Pedagogy Project.” LOL! So hats off to Barb, who daily models what all good teachers should be.

  26. 76
    Sarah says:


    Thank you for bringing this up b/c I’ve long been wanting to ask you a question on the blog but have not been sure how b/c it was never relevant to the topics.

    Living such a public life, how have you dealt with the criticism? Do you not read those websites/articles? Do you get through it but with many tears? In all these years, has it ever made you want to quit? If so, how did you over come that?

    I ask b/c over the last year or so I’m finally beginning to willingly surrender to a plan God may have for my life to write/speak/teach about Biblical literacy. I look up to Beth so much, and I try to remember my goal is not to BE Beth Moore but to be who God planned me to be. But my heart was deeply hurt recently when someone within my congregation pointed me to sites discrediting Beth’s work. I felt defensive over her and began to re-think taking steps that could lead me to a similar ministry with thoughts of “How could they say this about her? How does Beth deal with this? I could never do what she does. I could never handle that unfounded and blatantly inaccurate criticism.”

    So I really hope to find an answer – How does she do it? What advice does she have?

    • 76.1
      Michele says:

      I identify with your comments. I think I’m a step behind you. My gift is teaching but we haven’t ramped it up yet. I feel like it is ready to start, but I wonder about – if God gives me a solid teaching ministry, how will I handle the criticism that comes with being up front?

      • Kathy B says:

        All right girls. I’m going to risk sounding horribly presumptous and attempt to paraphrase a couple of comments I’ve heard Beth give that lend some light on how she handles criticism. Did I mention I being presumptous?

        I remember Beth saying she prays for thick skin and a tender heart. No, they are not mutually exclusive. Who knew? I’ve been praying for both ever since.

        The other comment was in answer to someone questioning Beth on why she obviously was not concerned with what people thought of her. She said she had to mull that one over with the Lord before she felt she had her answer. Beth said she realized that if people really knew her, they wouldn’t like her anyway. Utterly Profound! And freeing.

        Now, I’ve repeated this statement enough to know that some are going to need some clarification on that. Especially those of us who just love her to pieces.

        As I understood it, she meant that if people really knew us: the old self, old nature, the way we think and behave without the constant control of the indwelling Holy Spirit, they’d run the other way. Haven’t you ever looked in that spiritual mirror and just thought, “Eeew!” There you go.

        Now little-miss-smarty-pants is going to go find some menial task to remind her who she is and is not. Where did I put that Lysol?

  27. 77
    Siesta OC says:

    Melissa –
    First off, I ‘heart you’!!!! I had to pace a few times while reading this.
    So many points came to the surface, like “I can’t even see Beth’s mouth forming these words in this context, if you know her, this isn’t her.” As well as, “its amazing the very gift GOD has given some people to love HIS WORD from a thinkers perspective could take over the relational part of our walk,” PLEASE LORD KEEP ME FROM THAT.

    I appreciate emmensely your thoughtful and careful detective work and had to chuckle when realizing you ‘tracked this stuff down.’

    I have so often wanted to go to Bible College, actually sit and learn Greek and Hebrew and learn how to study the WORD from a teachers point of view I suppose. But GOD spoke clearly to me on that early on.

    You don’t need to go to Bible College to learn of me, you own a BIBLE…read it. Ask ME! Invest the time with me.

    I quickly realized that the wealth of knowledge I would be able to glean was not just in halls of Colleges that I could not attend for financial or timing reasons, but right in front of me, JESUS was right there!

    And how dangerous it would be to think you would be allowed to only make the time for the LORD to learn of HIM if you were in College and not any other time. The LORD convicted me in my heart of this…What are you really wanting to get out of this?

    GOD is not a career, HE HIMSELF is not (I say this wondering) a ministry. HE IS THE ALMIGHTY! I don’t put myself into ministry, HE put me there for HIS GLORY!!!

    I absolutely loved the quote about believing and learning and couldn’t help but be reminded of the little children coming to JESUS…Sometimes I wonder if we miss the point of excercising the simple way of just coming as we are.

    Melissa, I so enjoy your posts (even though you use words I have never heard) and I always secretly wish I could study like you have. Still do. But I am thrilled that you posted this, because it was an education for us in truly what is our goal in study and shady journalism.

    Beth, as always, you are dear. The LORD’S blessing on you as you have blessed so many in HIS NAME. YOU KEEP DOIN THIS THING!!!!!

    Siesta OC

    • 77.1
      jenn says:

      I so agree with you! I have eyed loads of commentaries and study Bibles only to realize that even with all of their scholarship, Hebrews 4:12 clearly teaches us that the Word is Alive. What we get out of our time spent in Scripture is meant to convict us of personal sin, disobedience, exhort us on in times of difficulty, etc. And to think that we would disregard what God is teaching us through His Word because one commentary or theologian says one thing and another has a completely different view point based on doctrinal differences is putting God in a box that is meant to be defined and compartmentalized. May that never be! Consult them in a difficult passage, appreciate another’s point of view as something to ponder, but never put them on a level playing field with the inspired Word of God and the power it alone possesses.

    • 77.2
      Michele says:

      good points!

  28. 78
    Lynne says:

    Thank you Melissa, for all you demonstrated in your blog; for your scholarship, your passion for the truth as well as the Truth, your academic honesty and rigor and your talent and tenacity. Your love for your mother shone through. The message around the quoted snippets is the very reason we lean on your mother’s writings – because she is so real in her love for the Almighty and through her testimony gives us, such a shining example of how gloriously His Spirit may reside in each of us, imperfect though we each are.

    Your exasperation at uncited quotes had me talking to my computer again as I shouted “I agree!!” This very problem of quoting people out of context is one that is rampant throughout media discourse today. It is why several years ago I limited my ingestion of the “news” to snacking.

    At the risk of sounding political, I believe that one reason your mother’s ministry is sometimes misinterpreted is that her ministry is one that is uniquely feminine. By feminine I mean it is not a heirarchical pedantic model but rather more a collaborative gathering of BFF discussing how to practically apply God’s teachings to His children to our very mundane life issues. That IMHO, is why she is sometimes dismissed as ‘too blonde’ (grin) and lacking academic “chops.” She just doesn’t sound like one of those big-voiced bellicose male preacher/teacher models. Thank God for that!

    You three Moore women (and the LPM team) make a formidable team against the enemy and give us ordinary folks wonderful armor to wear to protect us in our daily struggles as well! With Beth’s (and others’) guidance, we are changing the world one family/friendship at a time. Keep up the good work y’all!

  29. 79
    Leticia Pitts says:

    Thank you Melissa, I want you to know that I literally raised my hand in regard to turabian format. My family looked at me like I was nuts. I am currently attending Lincoln Christian University, and I am transferring to MBI, next semester.I am 43 years old and finally realizing my dream. I just finished reading Kingdom Ethics by Glen Stassen and Christianity Today editor, David Gushee. It is because of this assigned reading that I am transferring to MBI. I am not sure what to think about the “new perspective on Paul”, and the progressive christian movement, and I am with your mom when it comes to doctrine and not so much with Wheaton. Thank you so much again for the clarification in regard to this article. I love Beth Moore and I am glad to know that she does not think me a snob, just because I am now in the academia world, and plan on staying there for a while, with my hands up in the air, and my knees on the floor.

  30. 80
    Rebecca says:


    You must be very proud of your daughter for standing up for you. As a mother I know I would be and as a daughter I would run pages to defend my mother. I am not going to renew my subscription to Christianity Today. I was disapponted that Today’s Women got cancelled and this was my substitite.

    Beth, how do you feel about all this?? You have such a great support system here. BLESS YOU DEAR WOMAN!!!!!


  31. 81
    Erin Brady says:


    Thank you for posting this. We all, here in Siestaville, know that your mother’s heart was not accuratley reflected in that article. And to reiterate what another commenter said, it must be very difficult for your family to be in the public eye. I never really thought of that as being a bad thing in the “christian world” until today.

    I know how to better pray for you and your family now.

    Additionally, this peice was so beautifully written. Aside from the grace that our Father must have given you to be so direct yet tactful, the actual style, mechanics, composition, phrasing….is beautiful! You are a wonderful writer. I could read your words all day long.

    Much love and prayers, Erin

  32. 82
    jenn says:

    Thank you for this…..it is sound apologetics for those of us who do know people that are not fans of your mom and will take the article as sound doctrine. I couldn’t have done the research you did to find the original context of the quotes in the article, but I knew even after reading them that they did not sound like anything your mom would say. Your sound and courteous rebuttal is a tribute to the fierce and defensive love we all share for your mama.

  33. 83
    Leticia Pitts says:

    This is my second post I just wanted to let you all know that I am going to e-mail the magazine about the misquotes and let them know that I would like to see corrections and an apology to Beth.

  34. 84
    Meg Ebba says:

    Thanks, Melissa! I’ve been looking forward to this article since they mentioned it was coming in the previous issue. Thank you for being specific and accurate where the writer of the article was not. Any one of us who has gone through one of Beth’s studies can verify her passion for Scripture and her respect of anyone, in seminary or working at a dry cleaner’s, who walks with Jesus. But folks like my husband, who has NOT done one of her studies, will appreciate your thorough assessment of the article. On the one hand I am tempted to be annoyed at ANY criticism, ’cause I think Beth is the bee’s knees. On the other hand it’s all vanity and there are more important things in my day that bring me humility, like this diaper I’m about to change and it is heavy. Women are hungry for the Word because sometimes we are not getting it taught elsewhere. Sometimes we are, praise the Lord! But often not. So your mom fills a real gap, even if it is very uncool to say that. I’ll be glad for you (plural you, we don’t have y’all where I live!) when the big kerfuffle of the article is over and you can go out to the land and have a campfire and laugh your heads off. In the meantime, thank you for both the thrills and the toils. I’m grateful.

  35. 85
    Donna says:

    Wow! that’s all I could think to write after reading your blog this time. I often wonder where some of the statements written about people come from… I mean sometimes it sounds like the person wasn’t interview, but statements pulled from writings… just like you said.
    I’ve done almost every study your Mom (Beth) has done and a lot that Kay Arthur has done. I feel like I know them like family when they share about their family and share their spiritual lives with us on DVD or where ever they may be teaching. I have learned from both of them to study for myself and find what scirpture is teaching me. I value that most of all.
    Lord bless you!

  36. 86
    3GirlsMom says:

    GO GIRL! I’m loving what you said, I’m loving your research, I’m loving your clarification, but most of all, I’m LOVING that you’re defending your mama!!! You’re like a mama bear defending her cub…except backwards. 🙂

    I love how your mom tells us CONSTANTLY that she shouldn’t be our only Bible teacher. While I have learned more from her than anyone else, I love studying and comparing one teacher to another. I love learning something from scripture that the Lord has given to me without the help of a teacher. I love her passion, your passion, and the passion that I have, too.

    Continuing the ride with you. Can’t wait to see what’s in store next.


  37. 87
    Jodi says:


    You go girl! What honor you bring to your family and LP by standing firm on truth and transperancy! Congratulations on building your case, fully explaining your point and standing up for your Mama’s honor.

    As odd as it sounds, I am so proud of you. You did it with grace without attacking and smearing.

    God Bless You!

  38. 88
    Janet Cline says:

    Melissa – very well put and I couldn’t agree with you Moore! 🙂

  39. 89
    Sita says:

    Sadly, one of the things about being in the public eye, is the ‘opinion’ of all and sundry filtered through biased filters–there is no unbiased filter.
    Your mom’s response remind me of the advice that my Dad gave me concerning ‘criticism’…ask “Is there any truth to it…take even a nugget, say thank you for it, then discard the rest–leave the name clearing to God…”
    I hurt for you and your Mom..even this morning I was thinking of how most of my hurt has come from being misunderstood or judged wrongfully and I wish I had that temperament that lets lies roll off…

    anyway, appreciate your thoughtful and loyal response…all I know is that your Mom always leads me to study God’s Word…and I love you all…
    God bless..
    Sita from TO

  40. 90
    Edna says:

    Thank you for your thoughtful and intelligent response to the article. Stuff like that drives me crazy!! It was a very thought-out and reasoned-out reply. I just like that you love both your mom and the truth so much!

  41. 91
    Andrea says:

    Wow! Thank you so much for this post. It just proves you can’t believe EVERYTHING you read. As soon as I read it I knew that wasn’t Beth. I hope that’s comforting. I also bet it’s a little scary too that so many people know what your mom would say and what she wouldn’t even though they don’t know her “personally”. Let’s just say, we know our Siesta Mama and we know her heart. That is why so many of us can relate and LOVE her and LPM so much. You all are such blessings to SO MANY people! WE LOVE YA!!!

  42. 92
    Kristi Walker says:

    From a woman with pedantic qualities and a control tendency 10 miles wide (everyone who knows me as a real estate Broker would high five me on that comment!), I totally get this. However, for today, we’re pushing pedantic Kristi to the side!

    …hugs Melissa so hard she can barely breathe!…

    For today, the mother of four in me says I’m so proud of you I could do a happy dance! I have two daughters, and I can look you in the “virtual” eye, Melissa, and tell you that whatever God’s plan is for them, I sincerely hope it includes a heart as earnest, genuine and spicy as yours!

    Kudo’s for your willingness to search out, and reveal Truth. I have a serious dislike for anything remotely untruthful and this article certainly qualifies as that. LOVE THIS POST!

    Blessings to each of you siestas! Kristi 🙂

  43. 93
    WorthyofLove says:

    Tears…the doorbell rang. It was the airconditioner man. What a site he met!! “No, I’m not that upset that my airconditioner is not working.” LOL

    Dearest Mama Beth, I’m sorry that you were misrepresented. I pray that God will make your rigtheousness shine…maybe the magazine will print a retraction next month or something to allow your real words to be known. Although as I type that I know you don’t care about your words being known…ONLY HIS!

    We all love your heart. Thank you for being an example of humility to us.

    Big Hugs, Michelle

    It’s a chocolate kind of day 🙂

    • 93.1
      Kathy B says:

      My daughter just asked me why I was laughing out loud. I repeated your comment about not being that upset about your a/c not working. My next thought was that I would totally be crying if my a/c wasn’t working. But aren’t you sweet to be so tenderhearted!

  44. 94
    Leticia Pitts says:

    Correction David Gushee is a contributing editor for the magazine. sorry.

  45. 95
    Lil says:

    Very interesting. You, Melissa used more scholarship than the author who wrote this article. I think they had an ax to grind in the first place. I have come to study God more, because of your mother and I am not considering seminary and further study since I cannot get enough. Its easy to criticize Beth, because she doesn’t have a million degrees after her name, or isn’t a part of the early church. I think what the author was angry about is her success, her accessibility to women and her enthusiasm. If they don’t like the packaging they go after the woman. The author of the article I think was angry and things that probably didn’t even pertain to Beth. Thank you Melissa for being brave. I wish you could submit your article to CT, but that probably isn’t for the best. I applaud you Melissa for being right on. This is from One Wheaton Grad to another.

    • 95.1
      Lil says:

      PS. One would expect more scholarship in a Christian magazine, but I guess all journalists these days take the cliff notes, slash and dash approach as opposed to actual work. SO disappointing.

  46. 96
    FloridaLizzie says:

    Melissa, you honor God and you honor your mom by showing what she has actually said in context. As one who came with skepticism and curiosity six years ago to the whole “Beth Moore Bible Study” phenomenon, I’ve been delighted, blessed, convicted, and most of all drawn closer to God through Beth’s careful, enthusiastic, and practical teaching of God’s Word. I sat through a class years ago which mentioned the JEPD theory, thankfully at a Christian college that refuted it. I know how dry, academic and twisted the study of the Word can become, and am so glad for well-educated professors who taught it with joy and accuracy, as well as ordinary women who walk with God and study the Word eagerly, because God’s Word is living, active, powerful and practical for everybody. Girl, I don’t know what’s ahead, but God has something in store for you, Melissa!

  47. 97
    Kim B. in az says:

    Melissa, Well said and I am glad that you wrote this post. Your mom is so blessed to have a daughter who will look out for her and make sure she is fairly treated. It drives me nuts when the media misrepresent someone and/or in how they are quoted. I think you have every right to expect better from a christian magazine. Anyway thank you for the post and I hope that the author of the article your were commenting on sees it and works to rectify their mistake.

  48. 98
    WorthyofLove says:

    Dear Melissa,

    As a side note to you, I’ve been reading a biography on Mother Teresa. I got so interested in her life that I started looking up stuff on-line. For grins you should check out what they wrote about her on Wikipedia, under the heading Spiritual Life. They highlight times in her life when she was struggling with doubt and not feeling the presence of God. That was kind of where they left it. It made it sound like “Yes, even Mother Teresa doubted the existance of God.”

    It was hard to swallow. It just didn’t seem to fit with all that I had been reading about her. That’s what they had to say about her spiritual life??!!? After having finished the biography, I believe Mother Teresa like all Christians experienced her seasons of doubt or questioning, but there was so much more to her spiritual life.


    • 98.1
      WorthyofLove says:

      I’ve been giving this more thought. I realize that in the biography I read there was not a single mention of any doubt on Mother Teresa’s part. Interesting huh? I made my conclusion based on the my own life and the info in Wikipedia. Funny how people write what they want you to know.

      Makes me remember that unless something is from the source him or herself it’s just someone else’s take. The Bible being the only exception to the rule. Since the Holy Spirit was speaking directly through those men. Praise God for His his divine influence. Man would have no doubt messed it up!

      Much Love,

  49. 99
    His Jules says:

    Melissa – I want to join in with all of those who thank you for your attitude, for wanting to set the record straight but also for that inner voice and strength that stands up to defend your mom.

    I have not seen the article in question but after reading your thorough analysis I am glad that I read your post first, I am not sure I would have reacted in such a kind manner at someone misquoting our mama siesta!!

    Let me just say along with I am sure others before me that it is through your Mom’s ministry that I was introduced to a love for the WORD. It is because of the words that your mom has been so willing to share that I can teach other women in my own ministry that ANYONE can open up God’s word and be thrilled by new revelation and Love beyond measure.

    I have been saddened many times by those who have made the choice to try to discredit your mothers teaching or her motives over the years, but I always go back to the words of James “Count it all joy, my brothers,when you meet trials of various kinds,for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” YOUR MOTHER WILL BE LACKING NOTHING because of her obedience to Christ.

    Thanks again Melissa and Thank you LPM and Mama Siesta – I fell in love with God’s Word because of your obedience..
    I am forever in debted..

  50. 100
    Kiki says:

    Very well-written post Melissa. I’m so glad you took the time to clarify. Most of us “know” your mamma well enough to understand her heart. As my grandmother used to say, “that just makes my blood boil” to see her misrepresented in that particular paragraph. We here in Siestaville sure do love our Siesta Mamma!

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