Concerning Our Transition from Exodus International to Restored Hope Network
First Stone Ministries' Understanding of the Demise of Exodus International
May 2015 - Update: Read and Watch: In Alan Chambers' Own Words: Failed Former Exodus President is Morphing into a Gay Activist
Statement of the Board of Restored Hope Network's response to the Announced Closure of Exodus
June 20, 2013:
We, the Board of Restored Hope Network, grieve the decision of Alan Chambers and the board of Exodus to close down this venerable organization. It feels like the unnecessary death of a dear friend. It would have been better for them to have stepped aside and allowed others to carry on the message of hope for transformed lives. Although the timing of the news was a surprise to many, the shutting down of Exodus is the not-unexpected outcome of a cheap grace theology that severs the confession of Christ as Savior from the confession of Christ as Lord.
While some falsely proclaim that a transformed life is optional for Christians, the united witness of Jesus and the writers of Scripture are clear: In God's grace true saving faith results in a life of holiness and sexual purity. Thankfully God does not leave his people without a witness to the transforming power of Jesus Christ. The Restored Hope Network was formed in 2012 to provide just such a witness. We welcome all those cast adrift by recent events to know that God is still faithful.
"I am so thankful that Restored Hope Network exists at this time to continue the message of transformation and new life in Christ." --Frank Worthen, one of the founders of Exodus (1976) and of the Restored Hope Network (2012)
Founded in July 2012, Restored Hope is a membership governed network dedicated to restoring hope to those broken by sexual and relational sin, especially those impacted by homosexuality. We proclaim that Jesus Christ has life-changing power for all who submit to Christ as Lord; we also seek to equip His church to impart that transformation.
Sources on the Demise of Exodus
- A New Organization for Ex-Gays and How the World Sees the Church and Why [interview with Stephen Black] with Dr. Michael Brown (radio interview)
- 6 Lessons From the Collapse of Exodus International by Michael Brown (web article)
- Exodus on a Collision Course with Jesus by Dr. Robert Gagnon (web article)
- 'Ex-gay' therapy takes a hit with the collapse of Exodus International: A Christian ministry self-destructs over theological differences and poor leadership [interview with Anne Paulk, Executive Director, Restored Hope Ministries] by Lianne Laurence (web article)
- 'Gay' Recovery Group Returns to Bondage by Scott Lively (web article)
- A Response to Exodus: Don't Apologize for the Truth by J. Lee Grady (web article)
- Exodus International Closes Its Doors Following Troubling Leadership of Alan Chambers by Laurie Higgins (web article)
- Exodus International Flees the Promised Land by Rev. Mark H. Creech (web article)
- The Unfortunate Demise of Exodus International by Nathan Cherry (web article)
- Exodus International Closes After Alan Chambers' Apology by Erin Roach (web article)
- Dr. Robert Gagnon from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary discusses the closing of Exodus International with Janet Mefferd (radio interview)
- Anderson Cooper Interviews Alan Chambers on Denny Burk's blog (video interviews)
- Exodus International to Shut Down; Ministry President Apologizes to Gay Community by Sam Storms (blog post)
- Citizen Link Interview of Anne Paulk Concerning the Exodus Closure (web interview)
James C. Dobson, Ph.D. endorses the new Restored Hope Network
"As the battle for marriage and the home grows more intense than ever, I am encouraged by the work of the Restored Hope Network. The homosexual lobby has spent many decades and dollars infiltrating the culture to the point that even some churches and Christian leaders now acquiesce to the gay agenda. But Anne Paulk and the leadership of Restored Hope are standing faithful to the Biblical model of marriage and human sexuality, and in fact, to the Gospel itself. I applaud their vital work."
Board of Reference for the Restored Hope Network (those who endorse and support the work of RHN)
The History Behind First Stone Ministries Leaving Exodus International in April 2012
Many of you may know that for 36 years, First Stone Ministries has been affiliated with Exodus International, a network of ministries that all proclaim freedom from homosexuality through a relationship with Jesus Christ. Over the last several months, the leadership of First Stone Ministries has become increasingly aware of some changes in Exodus's ideology and leadership that has resulted in us feeling we are unable to continue as an Exodus Member ministry while maintaining Biblical integrity and a clear conscience before God. In April, First Stone officially resigned as an Exodus Member ministry. We remain dedicated to proclaiming Biblical truth in all sexual and relational matters, and to providing a safe place for those struggling with unwanted same-sex attractions to find healing and freedom in Christ and to be empowered to "go and sin no more". Pray for us as we seek to remain connected with other Biblically-sound ministries and to maintain and even increase our influence to the Church and culture in Oklahoma and throughout the Midwest.
Several sources which provide a prophetic and scholarly perspective of our decision:
- In Alan Chambers' Own Words (vimeo video)
- In Alan Chambers' Own Words (youtube video)
- In Alan Chambers' Own Words - part 2 (youtube video)
- Time for a Change of Leadership at Exodus?by Robert A. J. Gagnon, Ph.D.
- Cheap Grace Masquerading as Pure Grace by Robert A. J. Gagnon, Ph.D.
- Initial DSM Response to Exodus by Andrew Comiskey (PDF)
- Exodus: Letting Go, Hope Rising by Andrew Comiskey (Blog)
- Being a "Simple-Minded Jesus Lover" Is No Excuse for Really Bad Theology. Alan Chambers dodges the real issue at hand and inadvertently plays the role of judge. by Robert A. J. Gagnon, Ph.D.
- The Gospel of False Assurance, and More Evidence of the Slippery Slope by Dr. Michael Brown on Line of Fire (Audio)