Reblogged from: Basic Christian Wiki – Church Scandals
James MacDonald, the Elephant Room, and the “Spinning” of the Truth Earlier this week, Chris Fabry of Moody Bible Radio, hosted an interview with Pastor James MacDonald of Harvest Bible Chapel. Given all of the controversy that has surrounded MacDonald’s interaction with T.D. Jakes at the Elephant Room, Moody graciously saw fit to offer MacDonald an opportunity to clear the air and really speak into the issues at hand. Unfortunately, much of what was said further muddied the waters and complicated the situation. by Scott William Bryant
Moody Radio promotes heresy Emergent church heresy promoter Steven Furtick appeared this week on the September 12th 2012 edition of Chris Fabry Live, which is produced by Moody Radio:
Harvest Bible Chapel’s New $65 Million Debt The following is the story of how Harvest Bible Chapel went from being a church flush with equity to a church burdened by approximately $65 million of debt (please see The Documents for all supporting materials).
During the accumulation of this $65 million debt, did Pastor James MacDonald personally profit from the rapid expansion of his ministry?
In October 2005, Pastor James MacDonald purchased a home in Inverness, Illinois for $1.9 million.
In 2008, the elders’ interpretation of this resource suggested that James MacDonald should receive a salary of $250,000. Unsatisfied with this offer, James MacDonald brought several other external resources into the conversation, primarily leaning upon Jack Graham and the Southern Baptist Convention. Apparently, he believed his services to be worth far more than that which Harvest was offering. In the end, the elders consented to give him a salary of $350,000. But what must be remembered is that this request for a 40% pay increase came during a season that Harvest was in massive financial debt and the broader economic culture at large was on the verge of historic collapse.
In 2009, Pastor James MacDonald received over $500,000 in monetary compensation from Harvest Bible Chapel and [his radio show] Walk in the Word. This does not include any monies received from Harvest through his access to a staggeringly large personal expense account. It also does not include any possible, additional income he may have derived from other sources including: preaching fees, outside speaking fees, Churches Helping Churches, Harvest Bible Fellowship, book royalties, advances on book sales, 403B employer contributions, health benefits, or any other potential sources of income.
Since 2009, it has become far more difficult to track and document MacDonald’s compensation. Prior to 2010, Walk in the Word was a legally independent non-profit organization that was separate from Harvest Bible Chapel. But as of 2010, Walk in the Word was brought under the leadership of Harvest Bible Chapel as a ministry of HBC. While this may not seem significant at first, it actually makes tracking salaries far more problematic.
So, to recap. After leading a church into astronomical debt, James MacDonald pursued a $100,000 dollar raise (or a 40% increase in base salary) all while ministering to a largely middle class community, some of whom were presumably struggling with economic hardship. What does this reveal, if anything, about the heart of the man? Why would a pastor who does not love money ask for such a raise during a season such as this? Were other staff members given raises during this year, as well? And if so, what were those raises like? Finally, why would a church offer raises of this magnitude when many within society were taking pay cuts just to stay employed?
Update: Recent Developments (7 November 2012) HBC Gambling Accusations Readers raise new concerns regarding two [more] staff members and their alleged involvement with gambling.
This merely serves to raise the question as to whether a culture of gambling [i.e. taking from others through the occult arts of lying (bluffing), ‘Sacred Space’ (occult spiritualism – demonic realm interaction with the intent of manipulating people, places and resources) and other practices of deception] exists at Harvest Bible Chapel.
Notes RE: N.T. Wright’s Lectures at Moody Bible Institute
December 16, 2008 Pastor Ian Lawton Teaching Spiritual Atheism in Schools
Jun 27, 2010 – Pastor Ian Lawton’s Church Removes Cross To Appease Non-Christians & Progressives
July 31, 2012 Pastor Ian Lawton Preaches “Inspiring Atheism” and Freethinking — YouTube
August 17, 2012 Pastor Ian Lawton Confesses to Being an Atheist for the Past 20 Years Fighting for the Faith — Mp3
David Anson Brown 04:44, 18 August 2012 (MST)