I Will Arise
I have been connected with First Baptist Church in Hammond for 40 years. I went there right out of high school in 1966 to be under my favorite preacher Jack Hyles. While there, I worked in a steel mill in Gary, Indiana to earn money for starting college the following year. We had a wonderful time in the greatest church in America. I met young college age friends that I still consider my best friends to this day. I met many of the leaders that are still in the church and was part of the soul-winning ministry. In fact, a group of us young people started something called soul-winner’s prayer band. We would meet to go soul-winning every week and after 10 weeks we averaged at least 10 people saved per week during that period of time. I have never forgotten the experience.
Years later, after having been to BBC in Springfield, Missouri and also Tennessee Temple College in Chattanooga, Tennessee I was privileged to live in Hammond for 7 years, be in the church during Dr. Hyles zenith in ministry and also graduated from Hyles-Anderson College in 1979. I have never been in a more separated, sin hating, loving, and Spirit-filled ministry. Words cannot describe the greatness that abounds there. Just this past week, I posted many of the traits of Benevolence from this site as things that I have seen manifested at First Baptist Church and I would not trade that church for any other church in the world.
We moved away from Hammond to California and after some years wound up in Florida, the home of my wife Jeanie. During that time Dr. Hyles passed away and Dr. Jack Schaap took his place after having led the college after his marriage to Dr. Hyles’ daughter Cindy. The ministry flourished for the past 11 years and the church even expanded into a brand new auditorium with more technology than the old one. The ministry also has grown to reach around the world with branches of Hyles-Anderson College in Africa and several other countries. The ministry seemed to be moving along as it always had, winning souls and reaching more people than ever before until this year. I was a little stunned when, earlier in the year it was announced that there would be no more Pastors’ School as they had had for over 20 years. Dr. Schaap was starting churches all over the Chicago area and I thought that is good but still wondered about some of the changes. I well remember a sermon from Dr. Hyles about how to avoid death by avoiding sin, lust, temptation, enticement, and ultimately the first step of being drawn aside. It seemed that First Baptist Church, while not doing anything wrong, was moving in a slightly different direction. At that time I only took note.
Then this week we had devastating news, Dr. Jack Schaap was caught somehow in an illicit relationship with a young teenage girl, 16 to 17 years of age. The whole world is in shock over this unbelievable occurrence in light of the strict standards of separation and morality that have been taught in this church for years and one reason for their great success and the Power of God on the ministry. I have read much on the internet and watched a YouTube presentation by First Baptist of what happened and what they are doing going forward and I began to think about this site with it’s discussion of FOUNDATIONS OF MORALITY and how the situation should be handled according to the MORAL LAW. At the present time, even though Dr. Schaap has admitted in private what occurred, the only thing that has been seen publicly is the statements of their lawyer and some of the church staff along with much gossip in blogs all over the internet.
One reason I am writing this is that we think in the Fundamental Independent Baptist world that we need to love the sinner and help him get help to fix the problem but we are missing the whole FOUNDATION OF MORALITY that is at issue here. There is something fundamentally wrong with our thinking. Let me explain!
Morality can be defined, as it is so clearly in this site, as moral choice. Every man and woman in the universe is a moral being and as such we all have the ability to make moral choices of right or wrong. The right choice is always called disinterested benevolence and the wrong choice is always called self gratification. What is disinterested benevolence? It is based upon Agape Love which is loving God first for the intrinsic value that you see in knowing God and the desire to please him, and secondly it is seeing the intrinsic value in others, our husband or wife, our family, our church, our friends, our city-state-country, and even the lost souls that need Jesus Christ as their Savior. So what is the MORAL LAW. It is simply the law of love as defined here.
This means that in every situation a person makes choices. They either choose based upon disinterested benevolence or on the basis of self gratification. Disinterested benevolence means that one chooses the best end whether there is any reward for self or not. Jesus Christ chose the best end for the whole world by dying and raising from the dead and he paid the debt for everyone whether they accept that debt of not. The question arises when applying it to MORAL LAW, who is the moral governor and how does he administer moral law. God is the only one with the power to administer moral law and no law will have any effect at all if there are no sanctions that will reward when moral law is kept and punish when moral law is broken. As it says here on this site, if there are no sanctions then MORAL LAW is nothing but advice.
That brings me to the present situation with Dr. Schaap sexually abusing a 16 to 17 year old girl. I would like to ask a question or two here as we ponder this situation. When he and the underage girl were driving in the car on their way to one of their secret places to practice their self gratification were they considering the intrinsic value of their relationship with God? Was Dr. Schaap considering the intrinsic value of his wife Cindy? How about the intrinsic value of the former pastor and founder of Hyles-Anderson College, Dr. Jack Hyles? Maybe he considered the intrinsic value of John R. Rice who was one of Dr. Hyles’ great friends and traveling companion? How about the intrinsic value of his congregation? Did he consider the intrinsic value of Hyles-Anderson College? Did he consider the intrinsic value of the several foreign branches of Hyles-Anderson College or the many graduates and missionaries around the world? Oh, I wonder if he considered the intrinsic value of his children and grand children? What about the intrinsic value of the souls that he had won to Christ or taught the things of God? Did he consider the intrinsic value of the books he had written about dating and about marriage relationships and purity? I could go on but the answer is obvious, he only considered the desire for self-gratification. Is it possible to have a moral intention of doing good like preaching, winning souls, and building a ministry while at the same time having a moral intention of self-gratification? IT IS NOT POSSIBLE.
The answer is obvious, the moral law has been broken and Jack Schaap has been removed as the pastor of First Baptist Church. But wait a minute! Is First Baptist Church a moral institution and is it governed by the MORAL LAW? If so, there can be no moral law without rewards or sanctions. What kind of sanctions should be levied on a FUNDAMENTAL BAPTIST PASTOR who sexually abuses a minor? Is it OK just to say he admitted the problem to his wife and some deacons and staff? Is that what we consider SANCTIONS? How about if he is quietly ushered out of town and helped to have a new start and then after proving himself again he can get back into the ministry in some other state or country because people will have forgotten what was done and we can all breathe a sigh of relief that everything is alright in my Father’s House again? NOT!
Proverbs 28:13 “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.” I have read revivals and seen that public sins always required public confessions in order to free the Holy Spirit so that the revival can resume and the power of God not be hindered. For a complete discussion of what it means to confess sin and make things right with God and others please visit my website with this link – http://ifyoucouldknow.info/?page_id=205 Public sins require public confession. I love Fist Baptist Church but if they don’t require Jack Schaap to get up in front of the congregation and confess all, the church will have problems in the future. Let’s read a story in the Bible and what the Prodigal son said when he wanted to get things right and I want to challenge First Baptist Church or any other church that is faced with this same situation to do what is taught in this verse:
Luke 15:18-19 I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, (19) And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.
I want to say that Jack Schaap needs first of all TO ARISE. He has sunk about as far as any man can sink, molesting a teenage girl. He needs to get alone with God like Dr. Hyles did years ago and ask God to purge him of sin and renew a right spirit in him as David said in Psalms. Psalms 51:10-13 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. (11) Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. (12) Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. (13) Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.
The next thing he needs to do is to go to his church and stand up in front of the congregation like a man and CONFESS HIS SIN. You can read many stories about revivals and how that many times the Power of God was stayed during a revival because of the unconfessed sin of one person, many times a leader in the church. Once that person confessed, the power of God was poured out and a wave of confession and restitution followed that spread in a mighty Holy Spirit revival. If Jack Schaap considers the INTRINSIC VALUE of God, the church, and the potential of souls that could be saved by confessing his sin openly, he should do so soon while the sin is fresh in the minds of all.
What should he say? He should tell the church that he sinned against God, heaven, his wife, his children, his relatives like Dr. Hyles, his staff, his church members, hist students, his ministries, his converts, and even to the whole community and the world that has been watching by way of media. He should actually make out a list of all the people he has wronged just so he can make it clear that he knows he has wronged every one of them. It matters not how long it takes. I can assure you that the more people he includes in this confession the more powerful will be the impact on the congregation and on the whole world of listeners. There will not be any levity but all will be completely crushed by the power of the moment. Many will begin to consider their own sins and the domino effect will be powerful.
He should then say to everyone that he is no more worthy to be called Dr. Jack Schaap. As he says this, he should physically rip his Honorary Doctorate Degree right in front of the whole crowd to show that he no longer considers himself a DOCTOR of anything. Next, he should shred a stack of his books to show that he is not worthy of being an author of how to date, build a marriage, or build character. In addition to this the deacons, the lawyer, the people should all be informed by Dr. Schaap that they are no longer to call him by the title DR. SCHAAP. He should do the same thing with his title as Pastor Schaap. If there is any sign, document, or other physical item that has the name Pastor Schaap on it, he should destroy that in front of the whole crowd.
Lastly, he should do as the prodigal did in the book of Luke, he should say that he now considers himself as no more than a hired servant, a janitor, a toilet cleaner, a floor sweeper, a bus driver, or any other menial type of title he wishes to name.
You may ask, WHY ARE YOU TAKING SUCH A HARD LINE? I am doing this because unless this happens First Baptist Church will be eternally considered an IMMORAL CHURCH because they claimed to be moral but when it came to sanctions for the wrongs done, they gave nothing more than good advice and as such they are not a moral institution at all. I Corinthians 6 talks about how the Church is the place where these things should be settled. We have lost our soul in America. We have no morality because we don’t see the intrinsic value of God and of others before our own self gratification. We have no morality because we say that we follow moral law but we have no sanctions to keep us pure. A few verses and I will close:
1 Peter 4:14-17 If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified. (15) But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men’s matters. (16) Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf. (17) For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?
2 Corinthians 7:1 Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
Hebrews 4:1 Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.
2 Chronicles 7:14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
Perhaps if sanctions are revealed there will be the type of Godly fear that will result in one of the greatest revivals this nation has ever known. Where does it start, when the one who has committed the crime starts by saying, “I WILL ARISE.” The 3 sermons that Dr. Jack Hyles preached that Jack Schaap forgot was “Be Sure Your Sins Will Find You Out”, “Judas”, and “I am Not My Own.”