If this is the first time you are reading about Ted Haggard, don’t read this because hindsight would make you say “I knew this all along, he has always been an arrogant fool” or “False prophets are meant to rise in these times” or “Satan tempted him” etc.
Ted Arthur Haggard was the president of National Association of Evangelicals, senior pastor and founder of the New Life Church (one of the largest churches in the USA). A very powerful and ambitious man of God. I used to liken him to Apostle Paul because of his sheer desire to spread the word of Christ. He is known to have smuggled Bibles into the countries behind the Iron Curtain. People used to see good in all his actions, the most recent of his was when he kicked out Richard Dawkins out his church by saying “You called my children animals!” when Dawkins tried to debate with him on the topic of evolution and how God was never involved in creation.
He is one of the reasons why same sex marriages have remained illegal in the US. He used to openly bash and criticize many other evils in society until two days before, when Mike Jones, a prostitute alleged that Haggard paid for sex with him during trysts that had been taking place on an almost monthly basis during the previous three years. Mike Jones also accused him of using methamphetamine (a highly addictive euphoria drug). Although Haggard initially claimed that he had never known that man and denied that he had used drugs, he admitted to his crimes through his church officials today.
I personally, know two other similar people, who have screwed up their lives after living for Christ.
The question I have here is NOT: “Why do Evangelists screw up their lives so easily?” because normal people screw up their lives too! In fact normal people do it even more badly. The question I have is: “Why are Evangelists hypocrites?”
Why do they choose to hide their flaws, pretend to be virtuous, kick moral men of science who question faith out of their churches and condemn immorality just because they are working for Christ?
Before we become complacent by thinking that these are the tricks of Satan in these days before the apocalypse, I would like to emphasize the nature of free will these men of God are bestowed with. Haggard chose to be immoral AND SIMULTANEOUSLY a hypocrite out of his own free will. People considered him more just in the eyes of God than Dawkins who tried to debate about his faith.
He was the tree and he was good because he had good fruits. So people believed in him. All of us may think: “Oh… this happened to Haggard’s church but this won’t happen to us because our pastor is a moral person, he is good! Can’t u see?: He has good fruits of the Spirit. And we must judge the tree by its fruits.”
What makes the pastor of your church immune to hypocrisy and immorality? How can you be sure that your pastor is not a bigger sinner than the next door atheist?… Just because he has good fruits of the Spirit? No way!
By the way…
Modern atheists love their enemies too! In fact forgiveness and reciprocative altruism have been scientifically proven to naturally evolve in a competitive environment with selfish entities [See Evolution of Cooperation, Robert Axelrod]. Most of the morality in society that evangelicals preach to be only be possible through faith is much older than faith.
Digression: Why don’t “many” animals practice incest, rape or homosexuality? Why do they co-operate “most of the time” to achieve their goals even though evolution prescribes a recipe for the survival of the fittest? Why do some individuals in an animal colony are even willing to sacrifice themselves for their siblings? There are answers with scientific evidence for these questions. Just read W. D. Hamilton’s works on evolutionary biology and Robert Axelrod’s works in political science and economics.
I think if animals practice morality without any super ego or moral conditioning, human beings can be a lot more moral by simply applying their minds. I am against people who practice & preach faith at the expense of human morality, happiness and tranquility of our feeble minds.