Ashley Madison and the Church
The Ashley Madison data hack is already making ripples by exposing high profile evangelicals who have (now) acknowledged having accounts. I predict this is only the beginning. How should the Church respond when people who have been masquerading as Christians are exposed as adulterers? I would like to ask you to:
Care for their souls before their reputations.
Care for their souls before your reputation.
Care for their souls before their ministries.
Care for their souls before their marriages.
And what would that look like? Is that accepting their excuses? Is that believing them when they say it was just “a mistake?”
Mistakes happen when you get dressed in the dark and you end up at the office wearing 2 different colors of shoes.
Adultery does not occur because one gets dressed in the dark and makes an honest attempt to do right, but fails. It is on purpose. It is intentional. It involves multiple layers of deception.
But what if they’re sorry?
Let them prove it – OVER YEARS. In the meantime, for their souls’ sake, because you take Galatians 5:19 – 24 seriously, please do not pretend that they are believers and get all the rights and privileges that go along with being true Christians. And that’s the hard part. They will know the right words to say to make you feel guilty, to play you. And if you accept fake repentance, you are doing their souls a great injustice. Please don’t. This is going to be very inconvenient. People you have trusted, people you depend on, people you have laughed and cried with, who you thought you knew, are about to be exposed for what they really are. You won’t like it and you won’t want to believe it. You will have to choose between your comfort and the truth.
Spouses and children will be caught in the fray. Let them see that the Church takes God’s word seriously, that you love them enough to insist that they have a genuine family, not a fake one. If the wounded spouses choose divorce, please don’t act like THEY are breaking the family apart.
Please stand by them and offer help, care more for their souls than the divorce stats of your denomination. This is going to be a rough season. But if you are a true shepherd, you will care for the sheep and keep the wolves away.
Originally published at TranslationsByEllie.com [Internet Archive link].
July 17, 2016 update: Unfortunately translationsbyellie.com is not a functioning website at this time.
Related posts over at Spiritual Sounding Board:
Will Anna Duggar be offered as the next live sacrifice to save the Duggar Family Brand? Scapegoating, “Spread Your Legs Theology” and the Modern Molech [Internet Archive link] — EXCELLENT analysis by Cindy Kunsman.
And for those who need the backstory on Josh Duggar and the Ashley Maddison adultery-purveying website: