Keyed "grey" for reasons described here:
I have always appreciated the Bible-teaching ministry of Calvary Chapel. So do many others. Thus it was not surprising that some people started a usenet group where Calvary Chapel types could fellowship online.
Unfortunately, many un-moderated usenet groups are free-for-alls where anything goes. Some groups are now so overwhelmed with SPAM - the electronic equivalent of junkmail - that these groups have become useless. Other groups have been ambushed by people bent on tearing down rather than building up - preaching their message of hate or particular brand of false doctrine ad-nauseum.
Where possible, many newsgroups have therefore introduced a charter and are now moderated. Others have elected to operate mailing lists. But alt.* groups can not be moderated.
Thus, when the folks who operate Calvary Chapel's legitimate online ministries noticed that Douglas Gilliland, a particularly divisive person started to abuse the newsgroup, turning it into his main soapbox, they took a wise step and provided some good fellowship alternatives I'm sure you will prefer the alternatives over the newsgroup. In the latter you will encounter people who, while claiming to follow Christ, use four-letter words in referring to other Christians, as well as those who - in their immaturity - tear down everyone and everything that doesn't live up to their "standards." (On this, see George Watson's article on "A Censorious [Critical] Spirit.")
Gilliland and the Passantinos are friends, but the Passantinos do not wish to be associated with and do not support his methods of ministry as seen in the calvary-chapel posts. The Passantinos and Doug also have significantly different views on a number of subjects. It would not be correct to presume that the Passantinos have the same viewpoints as Doug with respect to Calvary Chapel either.
So, If you're looking for Christian fellowship, choose the alternatives over the cesspool that the arcc-c newsgroup has become. Some Calvary Chapel folks and friends with strong stomachs still post in the latter, primarily to point people to the legitimate groups. One such post is "The History Of This Newsgroup," by John Scudder, which provides accurate background information regarding the newsgroup as well as wise suggestions for those seeking fellowship. Dennis Hill, a long-time ARCC-C participant, also alerts newcomers to what is going on in the newsgroup - often by quoting others. An example is this message, archived by Google Groups.
If you do decide to visit arcc-c, observe for a while. See who - under the guise of "ministry" - attack, scoff, demean, tear down, slander, insult, and otherwise make a mockery of the Cross.
Important: If you decide to post on arcc-c, archive all your posts and the posts you reply to. This is necessary because experience shows that posts are frequently spin-doctored, misquoted, are subject to having words and phrases taken out of context, and are otherwise butchered in an effort to deliberately deceive casual readers and those who are new to the newsgroup.
Remember what the Bible says:
Warn a divisive person once, and then warn him a second time. After that, have nothing to do with him. You may be sure that such a man is warped and sinful; he is self-condemned.
No sense throwing your pearls before swine (See Matthew 7:6)
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