Moore recently published her memoir, “All My Knotted Up Life,” in which she recounts being sexually abused by her father as a child, as well as her experience as a woman in ministry within the Southern Baptist Convention.
Moore shared Monday morning that being “knotted-up” had an impact on her initial assessment of Gothard and IBLP. The reason why she did not find the teachings compelling was “a tangled up mess of toxic guilt and good discernment.” On the one hand, Moore saw herself as too broken to be accepted by “those who held a more fundamentalist view,” whom she “perceived as godlier, holier, better or more righteous than I and had a FAR better track record.”
Ok, a couple more thoughts on the Bill Gothard influence highlighted in Shiny Happy People. I’m only a couple of episodes in and never got into the Duggar reality show nor did I ever attend a Gothard seminar or read his materials though I constantly ran in circles that did.
— Beth Moore (@BethMooreLPM) June 5, 2023
“I was already disqualified. Already done too many stupid things and wasn’t even finished yet,” said Moore. “I mean, incest seeped through the walls of my home. We were the grossest of all. After all, sexual sins are the grossest of all &, boy, had we committed them.”
So while “the unhealthy part of me truly believed the main reason I was creeped out by those circles was well-earned shame,” said Moore, on the other hand, “a healthier part of me reacted with the hair standing up on the back of my neck. I’d seen churchy hypocrisy close up. I’d seen it used as a cover. I did not trust people who flaunted their righteousness.”
The “umbrella talk” Moore mentioned refers to Gothard’s teaching that the Bible outlines a chain of authority and that those who obey it will be protected, while those who disobey it will receive God’s judgment. The “first time, every time” parenting concept is the idea that children should be trained to obey parents’ requests immediately as soon as one is made. “By the way, I tried but Amanda and Melissa never did. Lol. And I wasn’t a very effective enforcer,” said Moore.
“Righteousness is right. We are indeed called to holiness. But true holiness bears humility. Purity as the goal is a sham,” said Moore as she concluded her thread. “Religious fundamentalism that holds girls & women responsible for protecting the boys & men from sin is a shelter for predators of the worst kind. It is inevitably criminal & an insult to true religion & to the name of Jesus Christ, Lord and Savior, with whom children were SAFE.”
Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar and IBLP have issued statements in response to the Prime Videos docuseries. “The recent ‘documentary’ that talks about our family is sad because in it we see the media and those with ill intentions hurting people we love,” said the Duggars. “This ‘documentary’ paints so much and so many in a derogatory and sensationalized way because sadly that’s the direction of entertainment these days.” The couple expressed their wish that people had sought reconciliation in private.
IBLP’s statement was more strongly worded. “The most recent ‘documentary’ about IBLP is a reflection of today’s culture,” the organization said. “Its misleading and untruthful commentary mocks that which is good and moral in the most sensationalized way possible, both for shock value and for profit…These attacks, as salacious and false as they may be, will cause many to search out our ministry and discover the truth for themselves.”
Viewers can watch the first three episodes of “Shiny Happy People: Duggar Family Secrets” for free on FreeVee and all four episodes on Amazon’s Prime Video.
Clarification: This article has been updated to clarify that Josh Duggar molested four of his sisters, not just two.