*Update: Thursday May 26 2001* — The lawsuit involving Eddie Long has been resolved.
Around the same time “Pastor” Terry Jones was threatening to burn Quran’s, news broke that two men had accused Bishop Eddie Long of coercing them into a sexual relationship with him when they were in their teens. Great, I thought, Christianity is headline news now because of an ill-versed crazy man determined to corrupt the bible’s teachings and an alleged pervert who abused his position in his church.
After a six-hour trial — put together by Mr. Jones — featuring a Christian convert from Islam as a prosecuting attorney and an imam as a defense lawyer, a jury made up of 12 church members and volunteers reached a verdict – guilty. Stupidity prevailed. Although this man’s 15 minutes of fame is over Eddie Long’s presence in the mainstream media appears to be also. I found myself wondering:
What happened to Eddie Long?
I knew that four sexual coercion lawsuits were filed against Long who denied the allegations but I wasn’t sure if the suits had been settled out of court. I found out today that the lawsuit had not been resolved and a judge is preparing to hear the case in court this fall — TGFG, (thank God for Google)!
I do not know if Long is guilty but I do believe in being innocent until proven guilty. I read a lot of comments by readers on stories to do with Long that said that there was no way that these allegations were true. Long seems to have the support of most of his church. Watch the video below of Long addressing his church last year, five days after the first of four lawsuits was filed against him:
I’ve read many comments by people angry with much of Long’s sermon, especially when he compared himself to David in the bible:
“I feel like David against Goliath, but I’ve got five rocks and I haven’t thrown one yet.”
Long’s ministry has been damaged by these lawsuits and the damage is likely to be permanent, whether or not the allegations are true. It’s unlikely he will ever be able to command the same level of fame he had before, even if he is proven innocent. The world is full of skeptical people and I’ll admit to being one of them. However, I read in an article posted on ThyBlackMan.com that Long had:
“…forfeited any chance at returning to the top when he opted for a private settlement instead of public vindication.”
I can completely understand where the writer is coming from but as a Christian, I couldn’t disagree any more. In the bible, Matthew 5:25 says:
Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison.
According to this scripture, Long kept with biblical teaching regarding disputes but not everyone agrees with the bible’s teachings. So perhaps I should retract my statement – Long probably wont return to “the top” because he tried to settle in court but anyone that applies biblical principles to their life should not hold this against him as many do. I just thought of Michael Jackson! Jackson was accused of child sexual abuse and settled out of court for a reported $22 million but he didn’t die a pariah….I definitely don’t hear about Long as much I used to prior to the suits but time will tell where his fame will eventually be.
If Long is guilty, he should go to jail. Politicians, Pastors and CEO’s and the like, rarely receive punishment for their crimes but, if you do the crime, serve the time.
Who knows if Jackson or Long or even Dominique Strauss-Kahn are guilty of their alleged crimes… we’ll have to wait and see what the jury decides.