We don’t fault people for being unaware of the allegations of mishandling of reports of sexual abuse at BJU. However, using this verse assumes that the ones speaking out haven’t heard the matter. For people who haven’t yet “heard the matter” to quote that verse to people who have spent probably hundreds of hours researching, gathering information, listening to survivors speak about their abuse and the way it was handled at BJU, having conversations with leaders at BJU . . . well, what happens is that the people who quote the verse may end up being guilty of the very thing they are accusing others of. In trying to silence those of us who are speaking out for the oppressed, they are essentially “answering” the matter without having heard the matter.
Some of the people that you’ll hear speaking out about this matter on social media are the very ones with the allegations—the very people who say that their case was mishandled in ways that might surprise you. And perhaps in ignorance, some are telling these survivors that they haven’t “heard the matter.” However, the survivors would say that they’ve heard far more than they would ever wish on anyone. For that reason alone, we urge those who are eager to warn against answering a matter before it is heard to simply refrain and instead, listen and hear the matter. Be willing to acknowledge that great wrong may have been done even by people we respect, ask the Spirit to convict hearts if the need for conviction is real, and commit them to the One who judges justly. Pray for repentance where repentance is needed, and for complete healing for all survivors of abuse.