Recently, a series of news articles appeared about a renowned Christian evangelist. The allegations were of sexual impropriety and inappropriate behaviors. Sadly, this evangelist passed away last year in 2020 and was unable to defend himself. The investigation is now complete and the organization with which he was associated issued a formal statement acknowledging the truth of many of the allegations.
I have quoted this evangelist several times in my blogs and his books and preachings have profoundly shaped my theological foundations in God and Christianity. I was shocked and disappointed that he was living a duplicitous life. Do these revelations invalidate everything he has ever written or taught?
If we were to invalidate the teachings or the spoken words because of one’s sins, then everyone who has ever lived should be invalidated. We are all sinners and fall short of the glory of God. The Bible describes King David as a man after God’s own heart. His many Psalms are soaring tributes of praise and worship to Almighty God. This is the man who wrote the following words.
You have tested my heart; You have visited me in the night; You have tried me and have found nothing; I have purposed that my mouth shall not transgress.
Psalms 17:3 (NKJV)
Yet, David also descended into the darkest depths of depravity by orchestrating the murder of one his trusted military commanders to cover up an affair he had with the commander’s wife. Do I cast aside his stirring words of faith that he wrote in the above verse from Psalms because of his sins? We know that David repented of his sins and God forgave him, but not before he reaped the consequences of his actions, temporarily losing control of his kingdom after a successful coup by one of his sons.
How do we reconcile the words of this evangelist that seemingly contradict his sinful lifestyle? In light of the revelations, one must always test what he said by the absolute Truth and moral authority of God’s Word, the Bible. Yet one should always be doing this, not only with this evangelist but with every word that is spoken by any leader or teacher of the Church.
…We ought to obey God rather than men.
Acts 5:29 (NKJV)
The bottom line is we do not follow any evangelist, theologian, preacher, or person.
We follow Jesus Christ.
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.