The following are headlines from this year. The purpose in providing these are for perspective on what’s happening in the church today.
* Former Decatur pastor faces additional sex crime charges in Tennessee
CBS 42 – March 22, 2022
* Hillsong Church founder Brian Houston resigns after internal misconduct investigation.
ABC News – March 22, 2022
* John MacArthur shamed, excommunicated mother for refusing to take back child abuser
Julie Roys – March 8, 2022
* Baptist pastor arrested for child porn possession after authorities search parsonage
Christian Post – March 16, 2022
* Youth pastor and 6 others arrested on child porn charges in Atlanta.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution – March 11, 2022
* Canadian megachurch pastor resigns after sexual misconduct.
Religion News Service – March 8, 2022
* Pastor arrested in child porn case.
Fox11 News – February 24, 2022
*Georgia music minister back on stage despite allegations he molested 13 boys.
The Roys Report – February 19, 2022
*Manager of Alabama church daycare charged with not reporting alleged child abuse involving co-worker.
CBS 42 – February 10, 2022
*Police arrest local Ohio pastor in sex sting.
WKBN First News 27 – February 8, 2022
*Tennessee megachurch pastor returns to pulpit after six-week absence for alleged adultery.
The Old Black Church – February 8, 2022
*Former pastor in Georgia accused of sexually assaulting a girl on Africa trip.
Miami Herald – February 2, 2022
*An elder faces charges of covering up child sexual abuse at an Indiana church.
The Roys Report – January 26, 2022
*Michigan youth pastor charged with sexually abusing 4 minors, 2 younger than 13.
Christian Post – January 24, 2022
*Indiana pastor, elders accused of covering up child sex abuse resign amid investigation.
Christian Post – January 20, 2022
*Former youth pastor from Chicago sentenced to prison for possession of child porn.
Fox 32 Chicago – January 14, 2022
*California pastor gets 25 to life for molesting children dating back nearly 40 years.
Fresno Bee – January 11, 2022
*Former MI Legislator accused of abusing his sister-in-law while teaching at his father’s Christian school.
People – January 10, 2022
*Texas youth minister charged with sexually assaulting 15 year old girl.
Christian Post – January 10, 2022
*Pastor resigns from his church after admitting his affair.
CelebSaga – January 4, 2022
Every story above, from just three months, involves a sexual issue. Many expose the alleged or confessed failing by a church member or leader, including the faulty way some churches have dealt with these topics. These are just a small sampling of the headlines that come to light every day. We’ve set up a page called The Church in the News on The Rogue Christian to give people an awareness of the severity of these and other problems that are tearing through the church at every level.
The following came to mind as I read through these stories.
Lives are being destroyed every day from sexual sin in the church. Men, women, families, and children are having their lives torn apart. Behind every headline is someone’s story, people who got ensnared in something that took them down, which had a profound effect on others around them. Remember, surveys show that two-thirds of Christian men are viewing porn. This is the tiniest tip of the iceberg.
By ignoring or hiding from sexual issues for years, the church has given Satan wide-open access to God’s people. We’re suffering casualties at an alarming rate at every level of the church as a consequence of our unwillingness to equip God’s people in the sexual arena.
When faced with it, many churches aren’t dealing with sexual sin well. Some cover it up. Spiritual abuse from the top, especially against the wife, is far more common than most Christians realize.
Have you noticed that for the past several years some of the big Christian names with large churches and organizations have been exposed? I can’t help wondering if God is putting His finger on our adulation of Christian celebrities, or our reliance on having a large church with all the bells and whistles where everyone can show up, watch the show, and go home with their sin and pain untouched. Is He pointing us to His original intent for church meetings, which is to be devoted to prayer, fellowship, and His word, and equipping His people to be overcomers in a time when we’re swimming in sexual sewage?
1 Peter 4:17 comes to mind:
For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God?
Might God be saying “You will hide from your lust, pride, and arrogance no longer. If you will not face these issues, they will continue to be your downfall”?
This should send a shiver down our spine. The fear of the Lord and His uncompromising call to holiness comes to mind. Yes, He loves us, but that’s just one facet of the flawless diamond of his character. Words such as holiness and sin are MIA from many of our modern churches. We’re not warning our people of the dangers of unbridled sexual sin as we are warned in the Bible:
Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
1 Corinthians 6:9-10
Thinking we can have all the sexual sin we want and it’s okay “because God loves me and will forgive me” is dangerous. We must warn our people of the dangers of pornography and other forms of sexual sin, starting with our youth, who we’re losing in droves.
This is intense stuff, but we live in dark, evil times. War is upon us, lives are being destroyed, and we must respond accordingly.
So my friends, I want to give you some action steps to consider. Wars aren’t won by generals, or by talk, but by boots on the ground; the infantry who are willing to invest their lives in the battle for God’s people. That’s you and me, my band of Rogue Christians.
Men and wives, many of you have paid a high price in the sexual arena. You know the pain and damage that sexual sin inflicts on individuals, marriages, and families. You have more experience and wisdom to offer in the fight than most of the generals because of what you’ve been through. Let’s put that to good use.
Yes, I’m recruiting you.
Sign up. As Isaiah did in Isaiah 6, offer yourself to the Lord with “Here I am, send me!” You’re needed in these desperate days. Some of you are already thinking “I’m not qualified,” and of course you’re not! Who is? I’m not! Much of ministry is showing up and letting God do the rest. All you need to start is the willingness to show up.
Speak up! You have a story to tell and much to offer. Share your story with others as God gives you the opportunities. 17 years ago, I was being interviewed on a radio show during the drive-home hour, around 5:00PM. As I shared my story, the host suddenly broke down crying, then he disclosed his struggles with lust on the air. Sharing failures and weaknesses is spiritually powerful. Don’t be afraid to offer yours.
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
2 Corinthians 12:9
Educate. I’m constantly educating people about what the wrecking ball of sexual sin is doing to God’s people. Many believers are unaware of how serious the problem is or the extent that lives being destroyed, mainly because the topics are rarely addressed in church. Post on your social media page and talk to others. Share the statistics. Share your story.
Go to your pastor and talk to him about the sexual sin that’s tearing the church apart; respectfully ask him to address it from the pulpit. Show him the statistics. You can ask him to consider starting groups for men and wives, refer people to ministries such as Blazing Grace, host a From Porn to Grace conference, give him a free copy of The Rogue Christian or my other books on recovery from porn and sex addiction. If you want us to send you free copies of The Rogue Christian to give away, reply to this email.
Pray. We’re getting our butts kicked because our churches aren’t houses of prayer. Satan has a stronghold in the leadership of many churches; this is obvious from the way sexual topics are avoided or skimmed over. It’s like being at war and pretending everything is sunshine and bunnies as the tanks roll in. The strongholds in church leadership and in the pews which Satan has bound God’s people with must be broken; prayer is the great chain breaker. Participate in a prayer group; if you’re not a part of a prayer group now, consider one of our prayer groups. Pray every day for the church.
My experience in the past 20 years has been that churches are resistant to openly talking about porn and sex from the pulpit, running groups for porn/sex addiction or holding conferences. If this is your church, don’t give up, in fact, you’re just getting started. I tell people all the time to start a group independent of their church and make it a ministry to their city.
Consider starting a Blazing grace group for men or wives in your city. We can help you get it going. Gene and Bo started a local group here in Chandler around a year ago. Their group is growing; those guys are making a difference and seeing lives changed. Boots on the ground, my friends! I interviewed Gene and Bo on our radio show November of last year. Click the link to listen to that show.
If you want to make a big impact on many, consider setting up one of our From Porn to Grace conferences.
Consider having me speak at your church or organization, that is, if you think you can handle that much Rogue in one setting. I usually have everyone share and pray when I speak.
I will leave you with the following. A pastor at a church of 5,000 recently told me that every marriage that comes to him for help has porn in it. The dark days we find ourselves are times of opportunity: the light shines brightest in the darkness. Let’s make our lives count for eternity. Reply to this email if you want our help in getting started.