On March 20, Jack Schaap, former pastor of First Baptist Church of Hammond, Indiana, was sentenced to 12 years in prison on the federal charge of taking a minor across state lines for sexual purposes. Earlier, in seeking a lighter sentence for his crime, Schaap argued that he was working 100-hour weeks and was thus so stressed out that he had a momentary moral failure after long years of exemplary Christian living and ministry. The reality is that he had time to exchange 637 text messages and 25 phone calls with the girl in a one-month period from June 21 to July 21 2012 (“Prosecutors: Indiana pastor,” Chicago Tribune, Mar. 14, 2013).
The reality is that the megachurch pastor wickedly preyed on the youth and vulnerability of a troubled young church member. In one of the text messages that were exchanged between the 54-year-old pastor and the 17-year-old girl he said: “You have affectionately spoken of being ‘my wife.’ That is exactly what Christ desires for us. He wants to marry us + become eternal lovers!” It appears that Schaap adopted the early Mormon doctrine of eternal marriage and multiple wives!
This is not surprising in light of his heresy of likening the Lord’s Supper to sexual union, a doctrine that he taught from the pulpit at First Baptist and in his book Marriage: The Divine Intimacy (Hyles Publications, 2005). Note the following excerpt: “When a person takes the bread during the Lord’s Supper he is not actually eating Christ’s body. That person is saying, This element represents something. The person who deeply loves Christ understands that when he receives Christ as Saviour it is a spiritual intercourse” (Marriage: The Divine Intimacy, pp. 42, 43). We will not quote further due to the fact that Friday Church News Notes is a family publication!
(Friday Church News Notes, March 22, 2013, www.wayoflife.org firstname.lastname@example.org, 866-295-4143)