Update: April 2017
Last year, some time after I posted this article, the author Tom Chantry was arrested on grave child sex offenses, and is now awaiting trial without bail. I am leaving this article here as a sober warning to be aware that there are many wolves amongst the sheep. Be dilligent and pray for the Lord’s discernment.
The hypocrisy of Chantry writing this article is staggering. Interestingly, I was aware of Chantry’s other writings but was never a huge fan for some reason that now escapes me, however this article seemed to have some merit. It’s kind of sickening to reread my comments below the article link only to realize how apt a description they were of the article’s author.
This is a very helpful article from Pastor Tom Chantry, reflecting on some hard truths about the state of what is currently called ‘Evangelicalism’. The issues raised in this article are actually relevant to believers in every denomination (as many of you would already know first-hand), and are worthy of serious consideration.
Along with a well-considered critique of modern Evangelicalism, Tom provides practical encouragement to those who belong to Christ in the face of daunting and pervasive challenges within the visible church.
There are countless scandals that Tom Chantry could have added to his list, and doubtless many more that have or will never come to light. Criminal convictions, financial manipulation, sexual immorality, bullying and exploitation of congregations by church leadership, the covering up of sin within churches, and at the heart of it all, unrepentant preaching of false doctrine by popular pastors – these disgraceful behaviours seem to constantly plague the visible church. Many battered and bruised saints (and those who have left the church altogether) bear witness to this sad situation.
These many scandals reflect in part the very problem exactly Tom Chantry is addressing in this article… in many of these cases there is no evidence that the pastor (or much of his ‘flock’) is a Christian. From their doctrine, their practice and their moral failings, the most simple explanation is the one least often considered. And sadly, often the correct one.
29 I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; 30 and from among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them. 31 Therefore be alert, remembering that for three years I did not cease night or day to admonish every one with tears.