Sorrowful, Angry, but not Hateful: A Survivor’s Reaction to the News from FBC Hammond

I wanted to share another post about the Jack Schaap situation. The author of this post, Lori Shaffer, contacted me and thanked me for the posts I’ve written surrounding this sad event. She wanted to share her post with me, and I must say I was very impressed.

This is written from a former First Baptist Church of Hammond member, who lived through her fair share of scandals and problems during her time there. Her perspective on the recent news is both refreshing and challenging on many fronts.

She expresses sorrow over Shaap’s sin, empathizing with what he must be going through, and she expresses grief for what the victim has suffered. But then she also expresses anger over the church’s systematic covering up of past abuse and failure to apologize to the women harmed by Dave Hyles’s sinful behavior. She calls for an openness and a public apology by the church and a change in direction regarding their teaching of the place of women. But she goes on to call us to “be angry and sin not.” She expresses dismay over how many people have been vengeful and hateful in their speech over Schaap’s fall.

Her post is worth reading in full, but let me share her conclusion:

My point? Let’s not embody the arrogance we despise. Let’s not rejoice in Schaap’s fall. Let’s not fill our hearts and mouths with venomous, vengeful speech. Let’s speak the truth. Let’s express righteous anger (which doesn’t have to be passive or timid!). Let’s turn up the light and the heat so that all remaining corruption is brought into the open. But let’s stop short of setting ourselves up as “better than.” Let’s not add to the shame of Christ by calling for castration or his rape in prison. Let’s remember who we are and whom we represent. Let’s offer love and rebuke and encouragement and truth where it’s needed. Let’s pray for those who have been despitefully used. Let’s pray for courage and wisdom for the men in leadership, who appear – for the first time in FBC history – determined to bring justice and restore the honor of Christ and His church. Let’s pray for all whose faith and lives have been crushed by Schaap’s sin. Let’s pray for righteous judgment to be meted out. Let’s pray for healing for that young lady-child. Let’s actually attempt to reflect the character of the One whose name we claim. Be angry…and sin not.

~ Originally posted at Fundamentally Reformed

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