Creative LeadershipEngaging Culture

Will Somebody Stop This Madness? More from Bishop Earl Paulk

“Bishop” Earl Paulk of Chapel Hill Harvester Church in Atlanta is no stranger to sexual scandal. But now, he appears to be breaking new ground. The Associated Press reports that the 80-year-old leader of a suburban Atlanta megachurch is at the center of a sex scandal of biblical dimensions: He slept with his brother’s wife and fathered a child by her.

Members of Archbishop Earl Paulk’s family stood at the pulpit of the Cathedral of the Holy Spirit at Chapel Hill Harvester Church a few Sundays ago and revealed the secret exposed by a recent court-ordered paternity test. The last six months may just be a new low for Christian “leaders” in America. As I mentioned, we’ve been here before with the Bishop. Will this stuff ever stop? Worse – will we ever be able to rehabilitate our perception among the culture?

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  1. Seminaries should require a course called "Real Ministry: Pitfalls & Integrity". Basic-training of gut-level honesty about the reality of temptation in ministry. If nobody talks about it as a reality, then they're either lying or naive, right?! Or, it's just too uncomfortable for most people to discuss (not here, though, thank you Phil). But, the subject has to be brought up early-on, in order for the next generation of leaders to be prepared for it. The Bible colleges and seminaries should really go on the offensive with this subject.     {Required knowledge of the schemes and traps of our enemy}

  2. So now what?

    How do we as a church representing the Lord Jesus Christ get this egg off our face from this, ORU, the financial scandals in the making, etc.?

    We understand grace because we have enjoyed it in our own lives.  We have fallen and He has picked us up.

    But the world only sees double standards. 

    How do we deal with that as media representatives of the Greatest Story Ever Told?

  3. We deal with it by being persons of integrity ourselves, by deliberately positioning ourselves in relationships of accountability. We deal with it by continuing to follow Christ with our actions and words – continuing to pray for our leaders, those who don’t know the LORD and the media that covers these types of stories. And we engage in dialogue with those who have been ‘turned off’ by these scandles to help refocus their attention on God instead of human personalities. (I am in no way suggesting that we ‘make excuses’ for the human personalities in an attempt to downplay the seriousness of the situation.) However, when we SHINE the LIGHT God has given us in an honest and authentic way, the darkness will automatically be exposed for what it is. Jesus said, “You will know a tree, whether it is good or bad, by the fruit it bears.” “Let others see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” This is a way in which we can deal with the situation.

    Allen Paul Weaver III
    author, Transition: Breaking Through the Barriers

  4. Mary, thanks for keeping us focused on the real task at hand – how do we create programs, music etc. that will continue to affect our culture while navigating through the challenges ahead?

    My immediate response is that we need to simplify the message with everything always coming back to "Love God, love each other because God loves us even though we don't deserve it."   This means less televisied church services, more one-on-one approach where we speak directly to the viewer / listener.  Become a friend to the audience not a "corrector of the culture" – more mentoring, less teaching.  We all know we have messed up.

    From this base, we can re-tool pur production away from personality-based production (multi-hosts?) to message-based.  Concept music productions vs. artist-driven music. 

  5. Weaver – great response.  Good points.  You saved me some words… lol – that doesn't happen too often!!


  6. Thanks Good Commentary. Brad, you said some great things as well. Yes, we need to re-tool the way we do things in many respects: Don’t just “tell” the people but “walk with them” through the process. This is mentoring… a different style of teaching. Island Girl mentions accountability which is of the utmost importance – expecially in a society that basically says, ‘Obey your thirst… and don’t judge what I do.’ God tells us to ‘provoke one another to GOOD works.’ Provoking a situation means your ‘starting’ something, trying to take things where they naturally may not want to go. In the above sense, it’s going in a direction that brings growth and not destruction. It takes two or more, working together to do this, investing themselves in each other to guard against the enemy’s attack and to call things for what they truly are – expecially when the truth hurts. Even then, all parties involved must be determined to seek after Truth and not just counterfeit possibilities.
    Allen Paul Weaver III
    author, Transition: Breaking Through the Barriers

  7. God tries all crimes committed in his name. No need to worry about doing anything. Just sit back and watch the prophecy unfold. Let go, and let God handle it. You'll be amazed. Separate yourself from the blight, so that rain may come into your land. The ministry shall not be established, the church will fail, and the rusted rotten corpse of what used to be a temple will stand for years as a symbol of what happens when a man tempts God.

  8. i know all too well about the bad things that happend at that 1978 i was molested by the youth leader at the time and told earl about it and he told me to keep quiet because no one would believe me anyway.i know of at least 9 offspring from 9 defferent women that earl has fathered. he is the anti-christ himself.

  9. Greg,

    Have you sought counsel over the years?  Does your bitterness extend to all Christianity?  I have often greived over such personal sins that have been committed against our youth by so-called men of God, and any person in authority.  I hope that you have found healing.  I cannot blame your hatred.  There is certainly a just hate for sin.  Especially sin that so directly hurts someone.

    If you have found healing, are you able to use your experience in ministry – to help others cope?  or perhaps you are still looking for healing?

  10. WE DEFINATELY NEED TO PRAY!!!!!  AND PRAY HARD!  I understand the position of these victims all too well. I pray that they will also find a place of healing and strength. It's going to be hard; but, God is faithful.  Should these pastors be held legally responcible?  Maybe it's God's way of "cleaning house".  Thing is, this stuff is not just happening. It's been going on for years.  And if this is what it takes to "clean house", then AMEN.  Turn the flesh over so the soul can be saved. In Jesus name.

  11. The Paulk's have a few books on …I am not making this up.

    Earl has one called "Sex is God's Idea"

    His "new son" Donnie Earl, has a tape series called "The Sins of the Father".

    Perhaps for a love gift of $20 you can get both?

  12. Sexually abused indirectly** by this man, I am outraged to read some of the text of the press release issued by sister-in-law Clarice Paulk saying that she had infertility issues and it was more of an insemination.  Lord have mercy, gays have been using turkey basters for decades to make a baby without doing the deed.

    If that is what it was…why is it now news to son/nephew D.E.?

    How can we allow this stuff to go on and expect the world the look to the church for answers?

    (**he  protected the "preacher" who victimized me from legal authority)

  13. Earl Paulk has a warrent out for his arrest.

     AP story begins:

    Megachurch Leader Charged With Perjury

    Posted: 2008-01-15 06:31:37
    Filed Under: Nation News
    ATLANTA (Jan. 15) – An 80-year-old leader of a suburban megachurch who is at the center of a sex scandal has been charged with lying under oath for saying he had sex outside marriage with only one other woman, court documents show.
  14. Greg why would you add more fuel to the fire by saying things Im sure you have no "concrete evidence" for. (9 children by 9 different women) You should be ashamed of yourself for "gossiping". You’re no different than the one you accuse by virtue of your gossip. Pray for the offender to repent and find his way back. Thats scriptural, but kicking a brother when he’s down isn’t. 

  15. notinamillionyears…Heres how we can expect the world to look to the "CHURCH" for answers. Earl Paulk, Billy Graham or any other man in the pulpit is not the church. Jesus is the head and we as His children are the CHURCH. Just because one man/woman falters doesn’t change the FACT THAT IT’S STILL JESUS ON THE THRONE. If the world is looking at a man then theyre doomed anyway. Man can be a leader and very well should be a spiritually healthy one, but you and anyone searching should look and read for yourselves and stop expecting someone else to carry you. Stop using someone else’s sin as your crutch for not being able to make it.



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