Entering into an internet controversy is dangerous business in our highly charged and toxic social media environment. At times, I’ve felt compelled to speak out against “Woke”, Social Justice theological abuse in the church. I believe much of this movement constitutes a false gospel, and is entirely destructive to the mission and mandate of Christ to his church. You’re welcome to read my pieces. I stand by my concerns. When I write on sensitive topics like this, I expect disagreement, critique, and, hopefully, honest engagement with the ideas. That goes with the territory, not everyone has to agree with me. Yes, my titles are somewhat provocative.
The other day, however, a far different thing happened. I was messaged a twitter picture by a friend of something Timothy Cho posted to his public page with the question: “Is This You?” It wasn’t. The picture in question shows my recent article with a cropped in statement that I didn’t make, asking the question, “Is this You?” Herewith is the picture.
I had no idea where this statement came from, who wrote it, context, or anything. But you could make out words like these: black and white people, Charlottesville, white supremacy, racial victimization, etc. It was cryptic, out of context and inserted into my blog post next to my name. It was evident what he had done, deepfake doxxed me to make me sound like a racist. It worked. And this is exactly how his friends took it, commented on it, engaged it, without any correction from Timothy. One person even said I have to do some real soul searching since I didn’t capitalize B in black (keep in mind, as it turns out, the piece was written by a Black man). It accomplished just what he wanted to do. Proof? The immediate responder, Timothy Massaro, a former member of my church, said this:
Wow. Soo it’s POCs fault that we’re in this “pickle” because they are just too angry about the evil done to them and way too demanding with calls for repentance? What??? What alternate universe does he live in? Oh yes. The URC
So, accordingly, I was falsely accused by his good friend for throwing POC under the bus, as he then trashed the entire federation of the United Reformed Churches where I pastor. This acceptable or Christian? Is this not abusive behavior? Again, no correction of the lie from Timothy Cho accept a further string of praise to follow for fighting the good fight.
Then a colleague of mine (I will spare his name because he is a fellow minister in my own federation) commented by saying this: “Ouch, sad, but true of my “room” in the Father’s house.” Again, my own fellow URCNA friend and colleague agreed that the statement above (please remind yourself again, it’s “not me” who wrote that statement) said: this is a “sad” statement of one who is in the same room with me in the heavenly Father’s house (Yes, I have reached out to my brother. I’m hoping he simply got caught up in this.). But follow the intended slander. For emphasis, my colleague said it’s “sad” I wrote that. Was that corrected? No.
The point is, the string of attacks that followed portrayed me just as Timothy wanted to accomplish: a white supremacist, racist. I still, up to this point, had no idea where this comment came from. Let me ask the reader: would you feel slandered? Would you want to vindicate your name if everyone thought you said that? Should I just leave it alone? I wrestled with this not wanting attention for Timothy or me. I can overlook an offense.
But now things go from bad to worse. I decided, for truth’s sake, to post my concern on social media stating that I have no idea what to do but expose the lie since I have been slandered. I hate this, it grieves me terribly to have a controversy. Soon after, in addition to the tailored Twitter photo, a string of very personal correspondences appear on his public twitter page that Timothy and I had back in 2017, along with a running clip of that quote from the picture in which he purposely cut off the link, still, to make it look like it was mine. Only after it was evident what he had done, did he disclose that it came from someone else during the course of our personal conversation.
You see, Timothy Cho and his wife were also members of the church where I pastor. I loved Timothy. He offered to housesit for us. We were friends. As he was beginning to move in the social justice/woke theology direction, I expressed concerns to him, in a brotherly manner. I expressed my care for him, that I want the best for him. I still believe that Matthew 18 should be honored, and not taken to Twitter. I still believe I am my brother’s keeper. I don’t remember all the details of the discussion; I haven’t even found it. But he has used it against me ever since. In this case, Timothy dug it up, and, as it turns out, cropped out the most divisive lines to make me sound like a racist.
Stop and let that set in, he placarded all over Twitter personal correspondence, not intended for public viewing, from four years ago, that I didn’t even say, to discredit me. From four years ago. Who does this? Does any reader think this behavior is Christian? Does anyone believe this is “social justice”? Everyone should be absolutely alarmed by this behavior, anything we’ve ever said in private is free game to destroy people’s reputations by woke activists. In many states, I would be right to involve the authorities.
As a side, that 2017 piece that was cropped in to my 2021 blog post is actually a thoughtful one from a dear Black brother in Christ. In the proper context, of our private conversation, it was a piece worth engaging. But I’m not omniscient of all my discussions with people of various articles and ideas. My real apology here is owed to Derryk Green for the way he was slandered in this whole ordeal. I appreciate that he has the courage to engage difficult subjects, as I like to do, over the concerns we have.
I genuinely cared for Timothy. I still do, and want the best for him. My goal was pastoral help. But I am deeply sad for him. His last two pastors whom God put into his life to care for him are deeply burdened over his behavior. And fair question: to whom is Timothy accountable now? Where are his elders? He just published a piece defending his behavior. Read it, please.
This demonstrates the angry trajectory of those who fall into woke theology. What’s more disturbing is that many fellow friends of Timothy and those studying for the ministry, and one as an ordained pastor, find him to be an example, and are rising to justify his actions. It’s appalling, actually.
Let me be clear, Timothy slandered me and violated the ninth commandment. If someone wants to press me that I agree with that article he cropped in, that’s fine. I’ve not sinned in this matter, only to Derryk Green in calling his piece racist. But you see, that’s what Timothy wanted to accomplish, that’s how it went. That’s all the data he gave for us to work with until the necessary exposure came. This is how Timothy spends his time online trying to cancel people from the past; a brief survey of his Twitter exposes this.
I am not angry at Timothy, I’ve already forgiven him. Timothy Cho is welcome to engage any ideas, but he is not welcome to deepfake doxx people, drag our personal conversations all over social media and then backtrack, as he did in saying that “Is this you?” is simply “a catchphrase used on Twitter to call out the hypocrisy of a certain tweet with a screenshot of a past tweet.” Catch phrases aren’t exempt from the ninth commandment. The very abusive behavior he claims to be fighting, he has done to me. I’m over it.
It’s worth noting that this actions are eerily similar to what he says happened to Aimee Byrd, whom he claims to stand with. It’s just sad that Timothy thinks he is doing God’s work in tearing down his brethren the same way he claims as has happened to Aimee.