Ryan asked me if I would post this account of his withdrawal. As readers know, Ryan and I do not see eye to eye on everything.  However, I think there’s value in hearing his account of the events. To that end, here is Ryan’s story, in his own words.

–Kevin

The 2016 May Trip, had a topic that had been scheduled for years.  It was a study of Romans 16:17
‘Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them’.
The May Trip question was to ascertain if this was talking about withdrawal or excommunication.  It was expressly chosen to address my excommunication, since mine was the most recent one.
The contention has often been made by Stanton, that I am proud, conceited, and arrogant, and that I was simply trying to gain power for myself.  They have used all the New Testament scriptures on troublemakers to try to label me as this, and discount what I have said.
The discussion went on for six hours, and at the end, my withdrawal and excommunication was upheld.
In addressing this, it’s necessary to focus on the facts, and to deal with withdrawable offenses.
This post will be the first time where both sides are posted.   There is nothing Stanton has said about me, relating to my withdrawal and excommunication, that I have left out.   Stanton has tried, and will try to muddle the argument by adding in irrelevant arguments dealing with bad decisions I made after being excommunicated.  We are dealing with the withdrawal itself.
The beginning stages.
My disenchantment began with an episode involving a sibling.  Let me also say there are those on the left, who are communists and Marxists, who scour the internet looking for dirt on me, and so I have to be careful what I say, as these malicious, malevolent guttersnipes and poisonous snakes have already been on this site looking for dirt on me.   As a result, if any have questions on the incident involving a sibling, I’ll be happy to give you details offline.
Let’s take a time machine to 2006.  I worked with a young lady who I admired, and was attracted to, whose name I won’t repeat.  She grew up in the church, and I had arranged for her to get a job.  I’d seen a few things that bothered me, and had taken this to teachers, because I didn’t know how to handle them.  Well, the next thing I know, the young lady is told not to come around the church.  She got infuriated at me, and blamed me for telling her business.  I certainly hadn’t told teachers things to get her kicked out of the church, but rather for wisdom to know how to wisely bring about the best results.  I was saddened, but knew I couldn’t protest too strongly, or my feelings for her would be revealed.  So, I felt like a coward.  I simply did as Stanton often advises.  I put it on the shelf.
At the same time, I was e-mailing a young lady I was interested in in Charleston.  Some may say my affections were divided, but they weren’t.  I had expressed for quite some time how I was interested in the young lady in Charleston, and she hadn’t reciprocated, so I decided that perhaps God hadn’t designed her for marriage.  I wasn’t sure about who God wanted for me.  So, waiting to see what God would reveal was my method.  I never spoke inappropriately to or did anything inappropriately to either one.
I was driving with the preacher in my church, to the airport, to drop him off for him to travel to speak at another congregation, and the topic of the young lady came up.  He said that she was welcome to come back to church.  Overjoyed, I told her, and was enthused when she actually came to class.  However, after the class, the preacher, as I was standing up at a men’s meeting up front, gave her a tongue-lashing, that she was not to come to class unless she got permission.  She was reduced to tears and took it out on me, and then vowed never to come around church again.  Again, I silently took this, and moved on.
Had a situation come up at work where I was scheduled to sell a life insurance policy to a client.  She did not buy.  She came back and discussed it with a co-worker.  Again she did not buy.  She came back in and told me she wanted to purchase it.  Told my boss.  My co-worker became angry and felt that she should have the commission.  It didn’t matter that I had discussed it first, or had sold it finally. So, took a lunch, thought it over, thought about Abraham and Lot, and decided to split the commission with her.  My boss called me in to talk to me about it, and I let him know what I decided.  Called MG to review this.  He said he saw nothing wrong with it.  MG brought it out in the November 2007 meeting, publicly.  Did not name me, but brought out details, and said that I needed to look into covetousness.  It was so obviously me that he was talking about, that my brother, sitting next to me, asked if it was me.  Was shocked out of my senses.  I had privately brought this to him, and asked him if he saw something wrong with it, and now it’s brought out in public?  It was an outrageous violation of trust.  If he thought it was covetousness, why hadn’t he said so in private when I asked him what he thought of it?  Again, sat on it and said nothing.
Had a fellowship at my house where a brother who had returned from being fallen away for seven years had returned.  Heard brethren make remarks like ‘We’ll see if he lasts ‘this time” while exchanging knowing looks.  He began talking and was asking about how to stop a smoking habit.  Apparently, some of the brethren did not like this, and so he was publicly rebuked in the evening class for daring to speak at a fellowship.  Keep in mind he was trying to come back from being fallen away for seven years and was penitent. In a sense he was the Prodigal son trying to return.  Yet, the churches response resembled the jealous older brother, not the Father’s joyous reunification with the son.  Again, took this and was quiet.  I was afraid of objecting, because I knew the church would simply take all the bad they knew about me, sensationalize it, and turn me into Public Enemy Number One.
Finally, DJ gave a lesson in which he stated we have to carry the consequences of our sins for the rest of our lives. Since this idea seemed to be behind all the wrong treatment of people I’d seen for so many years, I questioned this idea after the worship, as we were in the habit of opening it up for questions following sermons back then (a practice that was hurriedly discontinued after my withdrawal a few weeks later).  If we carry the consequences of our sins for the rest of our lives, then what exactly is salvation and redemption, both of which mean forgiveness for sins and the removal of the consequences?  This is not the once saved, always saved doctrine that is heresy in the religious world, but the idea that Jesus has the power to forgive and heal based on repentance, which varies individually.  For too long the church has served as a judge of repentance, when God alone is to judge this.  If a person has not truly repented, they will fall again, and they can turn to the church for help.
Shortly afterward, I went to MG, and gave him the four incidents that happened above with the young lady being asked not to come around the church (which was later overturned), she was given a tongue lashing upon returning, my private request for counsel being revealed at a November meeting, and the young man was rebuked in class for talking during a fellowship.  Told him these bothered me, and wanted to bring it to his attention.  He said, grimly, he would consider them.  That was done at his home.  Prayed about it and left that night.
Next class, it’s announced we are going into pride.  We have two successive classes on pride.  In those classes, the very response I feared happened.  The church began taking private confidences and using them against me in an attempt to silence me.   It didn’t matter what I said.  In their mind, I was trying to become a teacher and trying to supplant them.  Not true at all.  My basic idea, which is rooted all throughout the New Testament, was ‘Sin, when repented of, can be healed, rapidly and completely by God’.  Stanton viewed this as near heresy, and told me it was ‘Baptist Doctrine’.  I was told to stop sharing, or I would be withdrawn from.  In their mind, there are consequences for sin we have to bear all our lives, and it’s a wonderful thing to learn that.  That’s not what I read in my Bible.
Finally, September 21st, 2008 came around. Before then, a number of brothers had taken me out for lunch, tried to talk to me, and tried to tell me to be quiet.  I’d seen quite enough, and I was sick of living with myself, as a coward, while I stayed quiet while injustice was going on.  At this point, silence was no longer an option.  Was kind, but firm.  Also, for the first time in my life, my entire family was invited over MG’s, the preacher’s,  home for dinner.  It was an attempt to firm up the support of my parents, and siblings, it appears.  I knew what it was for, and, cynically, asked to attend.  He accepted.  In retrospect, kind of sad that the occasion of the possible withdrawal of their oldest son was the only time my parents and siblings were invited as a whole anywhere for a dinner by the church.
A babe had asked a question on works and faith, and I raised my hand to respond.  Was going to say that faith without works was dead, but that no one had done any works without first having faith.  DJ, who has moderating, immediately yelled that I needed to listen to my teachers and not respond.  I raised my hand to respond, and was not called on.  It was very awkward.  I’d had it.  Now I was being yelled at in class.  We broke for fellowship, and it was the most awkward fellowship ever.   Three of the children, I made sure that I gave papers too.  ‘Remember me at my best’.  I knew what lay ahead was not pretty, but I was resolved to go through with it, no matter what.  Was tired of surrendering out of cowardice.
Finally, the Sunday night class.  It began by MG laying out the timeline.  Of course, the four instances I mentioned above were not mentioned at all. Instead, Christians were asked to testify against me, if they had ever heard me utter the dangerous ‘heresy’ that ‘Sin, when repented of, can be rapidly and completely healed’.  Shockingly, many were eager to testify against me, who I had always viewed as friends.  This was very discouraging, but then I remembered, that simply because something is not popular does not mean it’s wrong.  A long time Christian sister told me a few weeks prior that I had ‘effeminate’ mannerisms.  This was mind boggling, as I’d never been told this before, and certainly had never been attracted to anyone but women.  Was a total virgin at the time, and had never desired a man or done anything with a man or a woman.  She then relayed that she spoke about it with other women and they all agreed about my ‘effeminate’ mannerisms.  Called her mother, OB, and she assented.  Didn’t know what to do.  Didn’t know which was worse, to find out that people looked at me as ‘effeminate’, or that Christians were gossiping about me behind my back.  This was a lot to process, and it seemed like the more I spoke out the more stuff turned up. when I called UT to ask her about what she said in private about me, that I’d heard about from another friend, she thought I was evil surmising.  Told her that if I talked about other Christians behind their back, that that would be viewed by me as me conspiring against them, and how that differed not at all from how she and others were talking about me.  In the Sunday Night class, she said that I was evil surmising.  I didn’t have the heart to bring up that she and others were gossiping in private about me being ‘effeminate’, and there were multiple witnesses who I’d heard this from.  Was too terrified to think what if what they were saying is true.  Unbelievable, that you have to base your Christianity on how other people look at you, based on idiosyncrasies that aren’t even sins.  Then one respected woman teacher began talking about uncleanness, which had nothing to do with the topic at hand.  The female teacher was well known for being of the opinion that rarely could anyone recover from said sin, and was notorious for joining with DWC, KS, and others in saying that you could lose your mind due to uncleanness.  They had no problem diagnosing who actually lost their minds.  This is why women ought not be teaching in public classes, because they frequently draw completely bogus conclusions and will argue for it, though it’s destructive to entire societies.  I was resolved to never back down now, because I knew the hell that awaited me from them if I did.  I’d likely be sitting for the next fifty years, consigned in the church dog house.  Anything was better than that.  I had nothing to lose, and everything to gain by resisting their tyrannical oppression.
At the end, I was suddenly and unceremoniously withdrawn from.  That was it.  When I protested and tried to explain to a few of my siblings in my bedroom, within earshot of a Christian roommate, this was taken as evidence that I was ‘murmuring’, and I was kicked out of the Christian men’s home I was staying in a few weeks later. The more I defended myself against the unjust withdrawal, the more they insisted that I was not ‘honoring my withdrawal, and was being unruly, disruptive, and divisive’.  I was simply trying to correct an unjust decision.
For four years I attended, and was spoken to by no one.  Finally, I texted DS regarding comments he made during a Friday night class, and this was taken as further evidence of my troublesome nature, and I was excommunicated on August 1st, 2012.
Since then, I’ve made attempts to return.  My phone calls are never returned, e-mails are only responded to if I admit I am 100% wrong, and the church is 100% right.  Any wrong thing I’ve done they attempt to use against me.  They speak often about me when I’m not around, but refuse to speak to me when I’m present, and absolutely will not have a conversation with me.  They refuse to consider they could have been wrong in their withdrawal.  The vast majority of those present for the withdrawal barely remember what happened, and there are many witnesses who can give anecdotes of how those who were present cannot coherently discuss the charges of why I’m withdrawn from, and few can even remember the charges. However, they never forget that I am withdrawn from and they are not to talk to me.  90% of the Christians in Stanton have no idea what I said that the church viewed as heresy.  If they did, and honestly researched it, they’d find that what I said is all over the Bible.
The May 2016 trip had the question on my withdrawal.  The church had been discussing whether to have this question for over three years.  They’d put it off for awhile, and now felt that it wouldn’t be as divisive.  GP and TC led off and set the tone, establishing that excommunication was a needful thing.  With them setting this tone it was nearly impossible any other teacher would oppose them in disagreeing with my unscriptural withdrawal and excommunication.  What’s interesting is never in the entire 6 hours of discussion were any of the actual circumstances of the withdrawal discussed, nor was my name mentioned once.  Instead, they focused on the scriptures, labelled me a troublemaker, though no one was told what exactly I’d done to merit that label, and everyone was simply expected to accept GP’s and TC’s verdict that I was a trouble maker.  No proof was given.  None of the details I’ve copiously listed above were discussed. In fact, they were scrupulously avoided.  Apparently the Stanton leaders think that giving their members too much truth and details is damaging.
In the meantime, they scrupulously stick to the party line about how excommunicated people are not ‘happy’, a subjective term if there ever was one,  and continuously hear swiftly about any misdeeds on my part, while vilifying and discounting venomously any accomplishments by saying ‘He’s crazy’.
To Stanton, I no longer exist.  I am dead in their minds, and they are happy to continue on and never talk to me ever again.  This is my punishment for my crime of disagreeing with them.  I read about this happening in communist nations, but I never dreamed this would happen in a church I was raised in.  They were told in 2012 they would not grow until they listed their unscriptural teaching.  Vallejo/Suisun has not grown at all.  They’ve noticeably decreased in size, though their building is the fanciest it has ever been in the entire 35 years I’ve been attending.  They view cutting off members as preferable to being proven wrong on anything.  They will claim that anyone who disagrees with them, disagrees with God, though the New Testament has at least 30 direct examples of people being healed of sins and sicknesses who dealt with them for long periods of time, instantly, upon repenting.
TC specifically says I need to ‘change my thinking’.  They dramatically emphasized how I am an ‘outcast’.  For what?  For simply disagreeing with an unscriptural teaching. In their minds, my words and name are irrelevant. All that matters is that I disagreed with them.
‘We don’t visit those sites, because they cause division’ PC verbatim quote.  Speaking of Kevin’s site.  Truth tends to do that.  Further, never will any of us find a written church record of my withdrawal, with the reasons for it.  It likely doesn’t exist. So, the decision to withdrawal and excommunication of yours truly lies with a few elite teachers, and they alone know the details.  Anyone who questions them will be deemed a ‘trouble maker’.  This is totalitarianism.  ‘a system of government that is centralized and dictatorial and requires complete subservience to the state’.  This applies to churches as well.
JW direct quotes 2 Hr 26 min mark of Part 2 of the question: ‘Just going along with what Kim and Tom said, In our situation in Vallejo, the brother that came he doesn’t respect the authority of the church, and tries to tear down our main preacher. And he, um basically …the withdrawal isn’t respected.  Him even being there disrupts the decency of the church and order.  I know …The children are scared. His presence disrupts the peace.  Him being avoided and not let is in the best way to do it.  When he does come in, we are subjected to his anger, and his agenda, so keeping him out…it allows our peace and order’.
In response, I sat for 4 years, unscripturally withdrawn from, and they still are saying I don’t respect their ‘authority’ though it’s not rooted in scripture.  As for tearing down the main preacher, objecting to his unscriptural decisions, based nowhere in scripture is not tearing him down at all.  Besides, upholding authority figures is called idolatry, and it’s a sin.  Notice how JW does this with KS, TC, and MG.  ‘The Children are scared’.  Of course they are scared, they see their parents response to me, and they think I’m some terrifying figure.  When you tell your children so and so is bad, they don’t tend to have nice feelings towards them.  ‘My presence disrupts the peace’.  Actually, unscriptural teachings disrupt the peace.  As far as anger, initially, when I went, I would try to say, passionately, my points.  Eventually, I understood, there is absolutely nothing I can say that will change their minds.  They aren’t trying to listen to anything I have to say.  They are simply following their leaders, and their leaders are only concerned with preserving their power, not with what is right and wrong.  My agenda is simply upholding what the Bible said.  It’s an agenda I’m quite willing to answer to God for on judgement day.   I now go in, silently, sit and listen.
It’s interesting that the entire 6 hours of discussion did not once focus on the two scriptural passages used to withdraw from me. Both were wildly out of context.  The first passage was in Proverbs 6:19 ‘sowing seeds of discord’.  That is not withdrawable in the New Testament, and nothing I did was sowing seeds of discord anyways. Their approach is that if someone says something the teacher does not agree with, that is ‘sowing seeds of discord’ no matter how scripturally accurate what the person said is or not.
The second passage used was in 2 Thessalonians 3:6 ‘walking disorderly’.  The context of the verse was to address people sponging off others, who wouldn’t work and support themselves.  Had absolutely nothing to do with someone who had a different understanding from the teachers on the Bible.
Also, never noted, not one single person noted the only scripture used in the class on my withdrawal, which was ‘Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.’. That is true, but there is repentance and forgiveness.
Also never noted is a class was spent comparing me to a transgender man from Spring Valley, and saying my causing ‘trouble’ was like this man, which it sounds like it was David Bream, since deceased.  Gross exaggeration and gross slander. Stanton never apologized for this distortion.
Just as the communists got rid of their political enemies, so Stanton gets rid of anyone who disagrees with the teachers.  They use pretty similar methods.  Distort the Bible and pervert it to say disagreeing with the teacher is the same as disagreeing with God, and then ruthlessly attack the person who disagrees.  If they don’t immediately wilt and apologize, do not waste time, withdraw from them.  If they still don’t surrender, then excommunicate them.  Don’t mention their name or their ideas.  Hope no one asks any questions. Hide the evidence.  If any Christian questions what happened, begin investigating this Christian’s weaknesses, and let them know, that if they ask too many questions, their own shortcomings will be revealed.  Talk all day about scriptural exegesis on withdrawal scriptures, but ignore the details surrounding the withdrawal.  If anyone asks questions, begin to preach about ‘pride’ and ‘being divisive’.
Also, I’m told that my ideas are like Baptist preachers.  No explanation is given.  I’m told my ideas were heretical, but the church did a kindness for me and did not call me a heretic.  Here is a list of 26 times Christ healed people of sin and sickness.  He said his word was capable of doing every bit as much as he did, and even more.  John 14:12-14
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.
GP: my main desire is the unity of the church.  Yes, he has admitted that he withdrew from a brother for uncleanness, though he knew it was unscriptural, for the sake of ‘unity’.  Never in the Bible will you ever find anyone doing anything against scripture for the sake of ‘unity’.  This is man pleasing, and the fear of man.  But, when you have those in the leaders, the followers will be full of it as well.  Every individual is important to God.  He never shows that any individual is worth sacrificing for the sake of a group which is choosing to have the wrong ideas.  GP does not concur with this.
GP also says California’s legislators are liberal, which he’s correct, but then says this is fore ordained, and we can do nothing about it.  I’m really happy that America’s Founders, who understood history and the Bible a lot more than Merie Weis, GP, TC, and every last person in Stanton, saw fit to pick up guns and do something about tyranny.  Think about the unbelievable arrogance of GP and the rest of preachers in Stanton to think the ideas of America’s Founders don’t matter, while they enjoy the liberty they were given by these Founders. They’ll say God gave it to them, not the Founders.  Well, the Founders believed in God, and didn’t waste a minute with the Marxist media and schools that brainwashed every last American alive for the last 70 years to some extent or another.
GP does not understand that Stanton is way out of line because the Bible never gave women the right to teach, which means Stanton’s very inception was in error.    It is a woman’s nature that emphasizes unity, conformity, no ‘discord’, and ‘peace’.  Men are more logical, reasonable, rational, and dispassionate.  Men are more likely to stand for truth, no matter what they stand to lose for doing so.  A woman is far more likely to be quiet for fear of what others think.  Nothing wrong with that, God designed it.  But, he designed an order, that America and Stanton have been violating for quite some time.  And women in America and in Stanton are not faring well.  All the power they have arrogated for themselves hasn’t done them a bit of good.
Also, Stanton does not understand that Alexander Campbell, the person who founded the Church of Christ, supported the Death Penalty.  Using necessary inference, it is easy to see that this also means he supported a military response to evil forces, so Stanton’s idea of nonviolence no matter what is unscriptural.  So, Stanton has been sowing discord and walking disorderly for all of its existence.  Funny, how those who engage in behaviors often project them on others.  When you forsake God’s order on women teaching and on serving in the military, no wonder it’s easy to raise effeminate boys, far more likely to get into masturbation than if Stanton had recognized and followed God’s command of women being silent, and allowing men to serve in the military and in the police force.  Domineering women often raise emasculated men.  Merie, for all her good points, left her sphere to teach men, and just like Uzzah, who left his place to do a good thing, the punishments are continuing to this day.  While she was kind and compassionate in private, her fierce and stubborn nature created far more problems than the small ones she tried to solve.  Paying preachers isn’t hardly a problem compared to rebellious women who insist on teaching and rejecting military service.
So, I have malice for none in Stanton, and charity for all of them.  I have no ill will.  I forgive them of all they have done.  But, their wrongdoing will not be going away until they correct it.  I will always have fond memories of my childhood, and be grateful for all that was done for me by the Christians, especially my loving parents.  However, I simply cannot give in to their unscriptural teachings. The truth about their unscriptural teaching needs to be revealed for all to see.   I’m also convinced that if every one of us could kick the person in the rear most responsible for their own problems, none of us would be able to sit down for a month.

On April 18th, 1521 Martin Luther stood at the Diet of Worms and defended his ideas that one does not need to be saved by the works of the Catholic Church.  His final words I echo, nearly 500 years later.“I cannot choose but adhere to the word of God, which has possession of my conscience; nor can I possibly, nor will I even make any recantation, since it is neither safe nor honest to act contrary to conscience! Here I stand; I cannot do otherwise, so help me God! Amen.”

Stanton asking me to bow down to their idols of unscriptural teaching, I will not do.  And, like God helped Meshach, Shadrach, and Abednego, when they refused to bow down to the idol Nebuchadnezzar asked them to bow down to, I’m sure God will deliver me.  But, even if he doesn’t deliver me, I still won’t bow down to them.

Thank you for reading, God bless,
Sincerely,
Ryan