Mahaney Has No Clothes!

By | May 14, 2014

1 Maheny t4g2

““But the Emperor has nothing at all on!” said a little child. “Listen to the voice of innocence!” exclaimed the father; and what the child had said was whispered from one to another. “But he has nothing on!” at last cried all the people. The Emperor was vexed, for he knew that the people were right; but he thought, “The procession must go on now!” And the lords of the bedchamber took greater pains than ever to appear holding up a train, although, in reality, there was no train to hold.”
-Hans Christian Andersen



Al Mohler praising C.J. Mahaney:

10 Fast Facts Regarding Grant Layman & the Nate Morales Sex Abuse Trial
1) Grant followed C.J.’s evil counsel to cover up.  (Grant Layman is the brother in-law of C.J. Mahaney and until recently a pastor at Covenant Life Church.)
2) Morales’ crimes were never reported to police by C.J., Grant or other CLC pastors who knew.
3) Parents and youth at Covenant Life Church were not alerted to the predatory and homosexual activity of Morales.
4) The school administration at Montgomery County Christian Academy where Morales taught and groomed victims was never told about his abuses by CLC leaders.
5) Other youth were abused as a result of all these criminal delinquencies.
6) Grant lied to detectives in order to conceal the conspiracy.
7) CLC and SGM leaders have denied all wrong doing.
8) Joshua Harris just commended Grant on Feb 23 for his personal integrity and ending his pastoral service well.  
9) C.J., Joshua, Grant and other pastors at CLC have covered up the pedophilic actions of other sex abusers with multiple victims at CLC.
10) The above have used a cadre of high priced lawyers and law firms to block every attempt to bring them and abusers to justice.

1Nate Morales

Brent Detwiler’s Report on Day 1 & 2 at the Criminal Trial of Nathaniel Morales

“I’m attending the entire trial this week. Here’s a brief report from Monday and Tuesday.

Eight counts of sex abuse and sex offense by Nathaniel “Nate” Morales were scheduled to be tried this week in Montgomery County Circuit Court in Maryland with Judge Terrence J. McGann presiding. Three of those counts were postponed because Daniel Bates, one of the victims, had a recent “serious medical procedure” according to the Judge and could not participate. Assistant States Attorney Jessica Hall indicated the State would retry Morales on those counts at a later date.

Most of Monday dealt with the selection of 12 jurors with 2 alternates. Around 2:00 PM Assistant State’s Attorney Hall and Defense Attorney Drew made their opening arguments.

Hall argued that Morales was a respected leader in Covenant Life Church who held a position of trust and authority with access to children that he could groom to be victims. She noted that Morales was outgoing, gregarious, esteemed and trusted. Also that he was in the worship group and functioned as the unofficial youth director.

She also outlined the crimes committed against Samuel Bates, Jeremy Cook and Brian Wolohan by Morales. Each time she ended her individual summaries by saying the victims or parents went to the CLC pastors and the pastors “covered up” and “ignored the heinous crimes that had been done” to these boys.

Defense Attorney Drew concerned himself with dates and times and the fact that no one reported any of these crimes to the police until Samuel Bates contacted Detective Sally Magee in October 2009. He did not seek to disprove, challenge or undermined any of the allegations against Morales.

The first witness called to stand was Samuel’s and Daniel’s mother, Grace Charlene Bates. Of greatest importance, she testified they went to Grant Layman in 1992 and told him about the sexual abuse of Samuel. This fact was not disputed by the Defense. Grant was a pastor at Covenant Life Church. C.J. Mahaney was the senior pastor.

Samuel Bates was called to the stand next. He described the terrible abuses he suffered at the hands of Morales for the jury. He explained he didn’t initially tell others because of shock, shame, confusion and embarrassment. He tried to pretend it never happen. He tried to forget it ever happen. He also fought off Morales on occasions even punching him in the face.

In 1992 he told his parents, Scott and Charlene Bates about then abuse. Afterward, they went to Grant Layman and told him about the abuse. None of this was contested by the Defense Attorney Drew under cross examination. Upon completion, the court was adjoined on Monday.

Court resumed on Tuesday at 9:30 AM.

Victim Brian Wolohan was the first one called to the stand. He too described for the jury the horrors he suffered at the hand of Morales. He too stopped Morales on occasions by yelling at him, pushing him away, telling him to leave, or stating he did not want this. He told of Morales coercing him to comply with the abuse by saying he (Morales) would otherwise have to go the men’s room at the local Mall, have random sex and then die of AIDS.

Brian told an older adult, Bob Rosencrantz about Morales’ abuse in late 1991 or early 1992. Bob then told his parents, Dick and Marsha Wolohan. Dick went to one of the pastors at Covenant Life Church to tell them about the alleged abuse. He could not remember which pastor specifically. This led to a meeting with Morales in a park behind the Wolohan house with Dick and Grant Layman or Robin Boisvert. Dick couldn’t remember which one. Morales denied the sexual abuse of Brian at this time.

Dick Wolohan took the stand next. Morales went to Teen Challenge in 1992 for alcohol abuse and homosexuality. Teen Challenge was not told about his sexual abuse of children. Dick, Brian and Kevin Wolohan went to visit Morales in the summer of 1992. During this time, Morales confessed to Dick that he had sexually abused Brian Wolohan. Defense Attorney Drew did not dispute this confession.

Pamela Plaisted was next. She was engaged to Morales for a short time while the sexual abuse of these boys was transpiring. She testified that people were “drawn to Nate like a magnet” because of his charismatic personality. She also thought it odd that Morales wanted to do sleep overs with boys while they were engaged.

Grant Layman was sworn in next. Under oath he told the jury he did not report the crimes told him by Scott and Charlene Bates 1992 that were committed by Morales against their son, Samuel Bates. He also stated that within one year, he learned of the sexual abuse of Brian Wolohan and did not report it to the police either.

Under cross examination by the Defense Attorney Drew (which was surprising), he was asked “Did you have a responsibility to report to police” the crimes committed against Samuel Bates and Brian Wolohan. To this Layman said, “I believe so.” Drew responded, “Did you report to police?” Layman answered, “I didn’t do it.”

It should also be added that Scott Bates, the father of Samuel and Daniel Bates, contacted the Covenant Life pastoral team again in 2007 when he learned that Morales was a pastor in Las Vegas, NV. The entire pastoral team talked about how to handle the situation with Morales. Layman was given the assignment to contact Morales. Layman talk to Morales by phone. During this conversation Morales admitted to the sexual abuse of boys but claimed he couldn’t remember the details. None of the pastors at Covenant Life Church reported this confession of sex abuse to the police. They knew Morales was a serial and predatory sex abuser.

Rachael Bates-Paci took the stand next. She is a sister to Daniel and Samuel Bates. She was the one who discovered Morales was in full time ministry. This alarmed her. She told her father, Scott, who went to the CLC pastors.

The third victim, Jeremy Cook took the stand toward the end of the day. He described the terrifying and demeaning experience of being sexually abused by Morales. He was afraid he would be ostracized by the pastors and all his friends in Covenant Life Church if they ever found out what happened. He also feared being expelled from the Christian School where Morales was a teacher and Vice Principal. Morales was in a position of power and well respected. He had no hope anyone would believe his story.

In 1993, Jeremy Cook finally told Samuel Bates and his parents about the abuse. Samuel talked to Grant Layman about the abuse of Jeremy. Layman assured Samuel that “They [the pastors] would take care of it.” Yet under oath, Jeremy said Layman “never talked” to him about the abuse. Under cross examination, Defense Attorney Drew asked Jeremy, “To the best of your knowledge did they [the pastors] take care of it” [i.e. report it to the police, etc.]. Jeremy responded with a firm, “No.”

The last person to take the stand was the lead investigator, Detective Sally Magee. She verified all the basic facts and described the times and place of her meetings with the victims and other parties.

Tomorrow morning, Nate Morales’ former wife, Marcia Jo Griffeth, will be taking the stand to testify against him. She learned of his crimes in October 2012 when he was arrested. She divorced him in December 2013. She is a wonderful woman. Tomorrow she will present evidence of his guilt.

After she finishes, either Assistant State’s Attorney Jessica Hall or Amanda Michalski will make closing arguments. They have been working together throughout the hearing. So will the Defense Attorney for Morales.

A few observations to close. At no time over the past two days, did Morales’ lawyer ever challenge the veracity of any of the crimes alleged by the victims. Nor did he challenge the testimony provided by Grant Layman and Dick Wolohan that Morales confessed to them that he was a sex abuser. Maybe Defense Attorney Drew will contest the testimony of all ten material witness tomorrow but thus far he has not done so.

I’ve been writing about the conspiracy to cover up sex abuse in Covenant Life Church and Sovereign Grace Ministries by C.J. Mahaney, Joshua Harris, Grant Layman and many other leaders. There is now NO QUESTION this has occurred. These men knew about Samuel Bates, Brian Wolohan, and Jeremy Cook. Never once did they report these crimes to the police. In each case, they covered up the heinous crimes in the words of Assistant State’s Attorney Jessica Hall.

I assume that’s why none of the pastors have attended the trial thus far. Nor has any leader or pastor from Sovereign Grace Ministries including the Executive Director, Mark Prater.. I find that utterly reprehensible. The entire pastoral staff of Covenant Life Church should have attended the trial to hear the evidence against Morales and against them. Furthermore, they should have been here to support the victims and hear their anguished testimony. Tomorrow, they should be present to beg everyone’s forgiveness and begin the process of public confession, calling C.J. Mahaney to account, and making restitution to the victims.

Tomorrow afternoon the jury will begin deliberations. I will write again once the proceedings are concluded.”

1 thabiti t4g4

1 piper

cj dever


1 wayne grudem

Here is an email I received from an assistant of Wayne Grudem after I had written him urging him to not speak at C.J. Mahaney’s church:

Dear Todd,

My name is John Paul Stepanian, and I am Dr. Grudem’s assistant as well as a student here at Phoenix Seminary. One of my jobs is to see to Dr. Grudem’s correspondence on his behalf.

Thank you for your inquiry regarding Dr. Grudem speaking at CJ’s church.  Dr. Grudem has the challenging task of weighing many worthy and intriguing requests.  His current research, teaching, speaking engagements and family commitments have filled his schedule, and unfortunately he will be unable to answer your questions directly.  Please accept his regrets.  Dr. Grudem has asked me to personally respond to these requests on his behalf.

Dr. Grudem is speaking at CJ’s church specifically so that he can signal support for CJ in the face of unjust accusations.  No further communication on this subject will be responded to.

May God bless your continued work for His kingdom.


John Paul Stepanian
MA to Dr. Grudem
Phoenix Seminary

On behalf of:
Wayne Grudem, Ph.D.
Research Professor of Theology and Biblical Studies
Phoenix Seminary

Carl Trueman on Celebrity Preachers:

1Photo Promotion of C.J. at T4G

“The moral and legal responsibility of every Christian — and especially every Christian leader and minister — must be to report any suspicion of the abuse of a child to law enforcement authorities. Christians are sometimes reluctant to do this, but this reluctance is both deadly and wrong.

Sometimes Christians are reluctant to report suspected sexual abuse because they do not feel that they know enough about the situation. They are afraid of making a false accusation. This is the wrong instinct. We do not have the ability to conduct the kind of investigation that is needed, nor is this assigned to the church. This is the function of government as instituted by God (Romans 13). Waiting for further information allows a predator to continue and puts children at risk. This is itself an immoral act that needs to be seen for what it is.

A Christian hearing a report of sexual abuse within a church, Christian organization, or Christian school, needs to act in exactly the same manner called for if the abuse is reported in any other context. The church and Christian organizations must not become safe places for abusers. These must be safe places for children, and for all. Any report of sexual abuse must lead immediately to action. That action cannot fall short of contacting law enforcement authorities. A clear lesson of the Penn State scandal is this: Internal reporting is simply not enough.”
-Al Mohler, “The Tragic Lessons of Penn State – A Call To Action”

T4G’s Original Statement of Support for Mahaney:
“We have stood beside our friend, C. J. Mahaney, and we can speak to his personal integrity. We can make no judgment as to the truthfulness of the horrifying charges of sexual abuse made against some individuals who have been connected, in some way, to Sovereign Grace Ministries and its churches. …

We must take any responsible action to protect the vulnerable, and we must act immediately to inform legal authorities of any charge or claim of sexual abuse, and do so without delay. Our first response must be to call the police, to act to protect the child or young person, and then to proceed to biblical church discipline when the facts demand such a response.

If a Christian leader is accused of any wrongdoing, those to whom he is accountable must investigate the charges and then deal responsibly with the evidence. If a criminal accusation is made, Christians have a fundamental duty to inform law enforcement officials. This does not, however, preclude or mitigate the church’s responsibility for biblical church discipline.

A Christian leader, charged with any credible, serious, and direct wrongdoing, would usually be well advised to step down from public ministry. No such accusation of direct wrongdoing was ever made against C. J. Mahaney. Instead, he was charged with founding a ministry and for teaching doctrines and principles that are held to be true by vast millions of American evangelicals. For this reason, we, along with many others, refused to step away from C. J. in any way. We do not regret that decision. We are profoundly thankful for C. J. as friend, and we are equally thankful for the vast influence for good he has been among so many Gospel-minded people.

Our heart goes out to anyone who has ever suffered abuse of any kind. Our emphatic encouragement would be for anyone who has ever suffered such abuse or knows of anyone made vulnerable to such abuse to contact law enforcement officials without delay. We must then allow the law enforcement agencies and the courts to do their proper work. When criminal charges are filed, the public is then presented with evidence upon which it can draw a responsible judgment. On matters of protecting the vulnerable, Christians know what judgment must be made. We side with the victims.

Our hope and prayer is that Christ’s healing and health will come to all parties involved in this matter and that justice and righteousness will prevail for all. May every true victim of any injustice be vindicated. May every doer of wrong be exposed. And may all of us speak no further than we can responsibly speak.

Those who minister in the name of the Lord Christ bear an inescapable duty to live and to minister in a way that is above reproach. Those who teach, reminds James, will face a stricter judgment. [James 3:1] May everything we do, everything we teach, and all that we are be measured against that standard.

Together for the Gospel,
Mark Dever, Ligon Duncan, Albert Mohler

The Gospel Coalition’s Statement of Support For Mahaney:
Over the past several months we have remained publicly silent about the lawsuit filed against Sovereign Grace Ministries (SGM), which alleged a conspiracy to cover up sexual abuse.

Many have asked why we have not spoken publicly. Is this a conspiracy of silence, a way to whitewash accusations against a friend? Is it a way to stand with the powerful and to make a mockery of the weak? Is it simple cowardice? Why hasn’t more been said?

…It needs to be said in no uncertain terms that the actual acts alleged in the lawsuit are utterly evil—an offense against a holy God and an act of hatred against innocent children. They are horrifying and revolting. Apart from repentance, they are damning. There is no excuse, at any time or in any place or for any reason, for the use of children for sexual pleasure. Pastors who learn of such abuses should contact the appropriate authorities immediately, institute church discipline, and apply the whole counsel of God (including both law and gospel).

…So the entire legal strategy was dependent on a theory of conspiracy that was more hearsay than anything like reasonable demonstration of culpability. As to the specific matter of C. J. participating in some massive cover-up, the legal evidence was so paltry (more like non-existent) that the judge did not think a trial was even warranted.

…Another reason we have remained silent is because we have detailed charges from one side, but essentially no defense from the other side. Scripture warns us about what often happens in such a situation: “The one who states his case first seems right, until the other comes and examines him” (Prov. 18:17). Can anyone say with certainty who is innocent and who is guilty in these multiple allegations spanning several decades?

…We are not ashamed to call C. J. a friend. Our relationship with C. J. is like that with any good friend—full of laughter and sober reflection, encouragement and mutual correction. He has regularly invited—even pursued—correction, and we have given him our perspective when it is warranted. While the admission of friendship may render this entire statement tainted in the eyes of some, we hope most Christians will understand that while friends should never cover for each others’ sins, neither do friends quickly accept the accusations of others when they run counter to everything they have come to see and know about their friend. We are grateful for C. J.’s friendship and his fruitful ministry of the gospel over many decades.

…Our prayer is that one day—and please, Lord, soon—all who face injustice of any kind will see the Lord bring forth his righteousness as the light, and his justice as the noonday (Ps. 37:6).
Don Carson, Kevin DeYoung, Justin Taylor
This statement reflects the views of the signatories and does not necessarily speak for other Council members, bloggers, and writers for The Gospel Coalition.”


1 folmar
Here is John Folmar, Senior Pastor of United Christian Church of Dubai, the church I formerly attended but quit for issues of conscience dealing with the promotion of Mahaney’s books:

1 go to book

Folmar’s “Go to book” for new believers in his church! Jesus opposed pedophilia, but I don’t see a whole lot of opposing going on by John Folmar. Actions speak louder than words my friend!

These “leaders” display either an appalling lack of discernment or a love of fame and fortune which overrides any concern for the brothers and sisters they are pastoring.  Either way one must question the wisdom of continuing to follow these celebrities.


Dever Mahaney DeYoung Kauflin Duncan in SA

1 spiritual abuse

Comments on from a former Sovereign Grace church member:
“I am so incredibly disgusted by these pastors, especially the fact that they are hiding behind lawyers.
I am also humbled by the brave people testifying in court. I can’t imagine what that is like. Thank you for carrying about others enough to put Morales away to keep this from happening again.
I do believe that this should be enough for CLC to close its doors. It’s time. I do believe had the pastors come clean and confessed all of this when they split with SGM and pursued genuine change, things could have been different. Instead, they have issued SGM-like statements that don’t really seem to paint an accurate picture of what happened.
Eric Simmons should resign and if no other suitable pastor is available, they should close the doors at Arlington, too. Eric needs to find other ways to use his gifts. Though his sin was committed at a young age, it undermines the very trust necessary to pastor. In an SGM/GC model where pastoring is reduced to preaching, it might not seem like a big deal, but the role of pastor carries an intrinsic predisposition for people to trust him and they probably would not trust if they knew the truth.
And, is there really anyone, whether loyal to SGM or not, who does not believe that CJ was not aware and likely giving direction about these things?”

“I myself will tend my sheep and have them lie down, declares the Sovereign Lord. I will search for the lost and bring back the strays. I will bind up the injured and strengthen the weak, but the sleek and the strong I will destroy. I will shepherd the flock with justice.”  
 Ezekiel 34:15-16

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[…] a high-handed leadership style and refusing to receive criticism, Mahaney was also allegedly covering crimes, participated in setting up a hush fund, and even blackmailing. He said he would look forward to […]

[…] a high-handed leadership style and refusing to receive criticism, Mahaney was also allegedly covering crimes, participated in setting up a hush fund, and even blackmailing. He said he would look forward to […]

[…] Mahaney Has No Clothes! […]

[…] Together For the Gospel and 9Marks are able to overlook a whole lot of shenanigans. After all, C.J. Mahaney, the former leader of Sovereign Grace Churches, has blackmailed his fellow leader and covered up […]

[…] I wonder if this will be enough to get the Gospel Glitterati to cease supporting C.J. Mahaney?  Don’t hold your breath! […]

[…] Harvey well as C J Mahaney. John Piper has spoken at CJ Mahaney's church and so have a number of other […]

the whole group of them are disgusting profiles of flesh, pride and high living at the expense of others.


Sabem – Jesus was pretty specific about the sins involving the harm of “little ones” being so great that they warranted suicide on the part of the perpetrator–check Matt 18 and Luke 17, some of the strongest words ever spoken by Jesus. All sin is sin, in the sense that it’s treasonous against the God who died for us, but not all sin does involves the same level of destruction to others. Propping up a child abuser, covering up for him, sweeping it under the rug, allowing him to continue hurting little ones for over a decade–in short, destroying children, causing them perhaps to perhaps reject faith in God, is absolutely vicious sin, sin warranting suicide. This is the sin of which Mahaney and others in SGM are accused, and remember, those who presume the ability to teach and lead will be judged by a higher standard. This is different from someone drinking too much, not praying enough, cheating on a test. Jesus did not suggest suicide for those sins. It is sin such as is not common to man. Most atheists don’t do such things, most Christians don’t either.

I think, Sabem, that you have bought into a common misconception among followers of Mahaney and Calvinist theology, the ultimate equality of all sin–we’re all “the worst sinner we know”. This is a common tactic of abusers, to equate all sin so that they can say “See, you’re no different, who are you to judge me? You must forgive me, have grace for me!” Supporting Mahaney and the others who propped up an abuser, and likely many others, for so long, is tantamount to joining in on the abuse of SGM’s victims. Grace and forgiveness has not been requested by Mahaney so far as I know or have ever read, he has acted as if he is fit to do as he pleases, to set up rules for others that he himself does not have to follow (such as running from his own mess created at his own church, something that would never have been permitted of a parishoner at SGM). We have been told in essence to look the other way; we have accused of being no different, sinners all the same, told not to judge. But the Bible does say to judge actions, it’s very clear on that point. And the actions of many leaders of SGM are such, per the standards of Christ, to warrant them throwing themselves into the sea.

Another way to think of this is as a call to church discipline, something that I think everyone interested in this issue supports. We think it’s bad when a wishy-washy church fails to discipline someone for getting divorced without a reason, or for supporting abortion, or when they tolerate a pastor who ordains female elders. We don’t say, as the liberals do, “Who are you to call someone else a sinner?”

The charges against the church leaders here are more serious than in any of those examples. Letting Christ’s church being turned into a vicious sodomite brothel is no trivial charge. Even if the charge is false— and there’s no reason to think it’s false— it scandalizes the church for those accused not to confront the charges, and for them to conceal whatever evidence they claim to have to exonerate themselves. Any person’s rational reaction, of course, is to believe that they’re refusing to defend themselves because they’re 100% guilty and are trying to bluff their way through.

When you’re caught with your hand in the cookie jar, all you can do is call in favors from friends and have them say, “I myself have never seen him with his hand in a cookie jar. I can’t imagine a person like him eating cookies.”


Yes, I’m just tired of all these “Christian” calls for “forgiveness”. One can forgive CJ Mahaney (though I don’t recall CJ ever asking for forgiveness, it seems rather that he and his high profile supporters think there’s nothing to forgive) while simultaneously exposing his evil deeds. We are to forgive. We are also to expose evil and call out the evil-doers. These are not mutually exclusive.

[…] that could change our minds? Or must we wait for such a situation to mushroom into something like this years (or even decades) […]


How quick I am to see another man’s sin as unforgivable; another man’s sin as worse than my own. I cry out in self-righteous anger at another man’s sin, while expecting mercy and understanding for my own. And I should add, while enjoying mercy for my own and abundant grace in spite of my own.
John 8
1 but Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. 2 At dawn he appeared again in the temple courts, where all the people gathered around him, and he sat down to teach them. 3 The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group 4 and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. 5 In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” 6 They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him.
But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. 7 When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” 8 Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground.
9 At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. 10 Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”
11 “No one, sir,” she said.
“Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”

Serving Kids in Japan

Your point being…what exactly?

Are you actually going somewhere, or just taking a stroll?


Sin is sin. If I was the only sinner in the world, Jesus would’ve had to have paid the same price to redeem me, even though I haven’t done the thing they are alleging Pastor Mahaney has done. And I would hope my friends who seek to model all of who God is – longsuffering, love, grace, forgiveness, not just holiness and justice – wouldn’t abandon me even if I fall – or should I say “when”. Even if everything this article says about everyone is true, I wish we could see less condemnation from followers of Christ. We can call sin what it is without being so arrogant as to assume my sin is somehow more acceptable or “cleaner” than someone else’s. Our hearts should be broken for the sin and the sinner.

Yes we are all sinners and, as James says, stumble in many ways. Yes there is mercy and forgiveness when we repent. But a couple of points – C.J. Mahaney (and the other SGM leaders involved in covering up of abuse and not reporting it to authorities) has never, to my knowledge, publicly acknowledged or repented from his sins of covering up sexual abuse and blackmailing Larry Tomczak. IF Mahaney were ever to publicly repent I am sure most Christians would forgive him and see no need to continue warning people about his evil ways. However, I believe his sins are grievous to the point of disqualifying him from the ministry. Al Mohler speaking about Penn State said “The moral and legal responsibility of every Christian — and especially every Christian leader and minister — must be to report any suspicion of the abuse of a child to law enforcement authorities. Christians are sometimes reluctant to do this, but this reluctance is both deadly and wrong..
TheT4G men, in their statement of support for Mahaney said: “A Christian leader, charged with any credible, serious, and direct wrongdoing, would usually be well advised to step down from public ministry.”
I believe that if Mahaney repented and owned up to the serious nature of his sins he would actually remove himself from the role of pastor and conference speaker.

Christ stated in Matthew 7:15-16 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will recognize them by their fruits.”
Judging by the fruit of “the largest sexual abuse scandal to hit the Evangelical church in America,” I would say Mahaney is a wolf.

Paul warns us in Ephesians 5:6-14 to “Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. Therefore do not become partners with them; for bat one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret. But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, for anything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says,
“Awake, O sleeper,
and narise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you.”

I wonder if you might feel differently about Mahaney if you had a child who was among the victims of the Sovereign Grace sex abuse scandal? I believe if we as Christians took the position you are advocating the church would be overrun with wolves. What did Paul say? “It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that is not tolerated even among pagans, for a man has his father’s wife. And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you.” -!1 Corinthians 5:1-2.

As Matt Redmond says: “I plan to continue this encouragement for as long as it takes. And I also plan to feel biblical about it. Twice on Sunday.”

“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those being crushed. Yes, speak up for the poor and helpless, and see that they get justice.” -Proverbs 31:8-9 NLT


I completely agree with you…if what’s being said about Mahaney is true. I’m not saying it’s not, but I wasn’t there and I haven’t read anywhere that that has been proven as fact. And I will also readily admit that I’m no expert on the situation. Just concerned at how often we look down our noses at someone else’s “more sinful” sin. And how quick we are to take a side and throw someone under a bus when we’ve only heard one side. Which, quite frankly, applies whether it’s all true or not. And I don’t know why you mentioned that you wonder if I might feel differently about Mahaney if it was one of my children involved. Don’t remember mentioning anything about my feelings for or against him? I don’t have any feelings for or against him. But I will say, either way, my heart breaks for him and his ministry. If the allegations are true, then I grieve the loss of his credible ministry, the deception and lack of repentance, and the hurt caused to the families under his ministry – both past and present. And if it’s not true, I grieve the loss of a man of God’s reputation, the inevitable loss of credible ministry, the effects of slander and our propensity to believe and condemn before we’ve heard the whole matter.

“And I don’t know why you mentioned that you wonder if I might feel differently about Mahaney if it was one of my children involved. Don’t remember mentioning anything about my feelings for or against him? I don’t have any feelings for or against him.”

Sorry Sabem,
I jumped to the conclusion that you were a supporter and defender of Mahaney. I apologize.

elizabetta carrerra

Oh, puleeze, Ceej! Could you just stop dressing like a middle schooler and dress like a grownup???… hmmmm, dresses like a kid, takes all his toys and goes to Louisville. . . hmmmm, correlation here?

This is a useful post, but it makes too much of the fact that the defense attorney did not challenge what witnesses said about the church staff. Remember, he’s defending Morales, not the church. It’s in Morales’s interest to make the church look as bad as possible, so he can share his guilt and maybe the jury will feel he’s not such a bad man. So everybody there was trying to make the church leaders look bad except Pastor Layman; the church did not have a chance in court to give its side of the story.
That said, it’s hard to see that a lawyer for the church could have done much good. Pastor Trueman admitted his guilt (did he admit guilt to a criminal offense, unprosecutable because of the statute of limitations?). The witnesses were credible and numerous. And the church leaders do have a chance to make their case outside of the courtroom. This blog would, I hope, give them space if they’d like “their day in court”. In fact, I suggest the blog publicly make them the offer of space to present their case, without editing (though the blogmaster and commenters would of course also have space to reply).
Moreover, since Mr. Morales will probably be found guilty, he would be well advised to think now, in preparation for his sentencing hearing, about what he’d say in a detailed public confession, one that includes previously secret facts about his interactions with the church leaders. The more new information, and the more important it is, the more lenient will be the judge. In fact, his lawyer might make a post-trial deal with the prosecutor for immunity from new charges if he reveals other victimizations not part of the trial. This would also prevent him from being blackmailed by church leaders who might know of other victimizations and use the info to keep him quiet.

Seeing that a member of the church staff testified in the Morales trial that CLC staff were told of the sexual abuse and did not go to authorities I don’t make too much of the fact that the victims were not challenged about what they said concerning the staff.

CLC has a bully pulpit and we have been waiting for about two years for them to give their side of events. If their version differs from what Brent Detwiler has layed out in his documents and what Layman has admitted under oath you would think they would have publicized their story a long time ago. Instead we get the tired line:

“With the civil lawsuit still on appeal, we continue to be constrained in how much we can communicate, but look forward to being able to present a fuller picture at the appropriate time. Thank you for your understanding and patience.”

Perhaps there is some truth in this, but it seems to me that the sole reason CLC hired a law firm to investigate the matter is so they could remain silent by using the line above.

Nevertheless, I will happily do as you suggest and publicly invite the leaders of SGM to present their case here. I highly doubt they will take me up on the offer. I should add that in the remote chance that SGM leaders do wish to present their case here I will offer Brent Detwiler the chance to reply to whatever they say.

Finally, how can Nate Morales make a detailed public confession when the poor man is suffering from a rare form of Alzheimer’s disease in which one loses all recollection of any criminal sexual abuse in ones past?

Remember the joke about the man who beat the insurance company in the trial over whether he was faking his paralysis? When the insurance detective said, “I’ll follow you for the rest of your life!” his reply was “Does that include my trip to Lourdes next week?” Mr. Morales’s memory may well come back soon “because of the stress of being convicted.”

[…] (Audio of Bill O'Neal here) […]

Reblogged this on christianagnostic and commented:
Excellent re-cap of all the lies and mistruths concerning CJ Mahaney, Josh Harris ,and the whole pastoral staff at Sovereign Grace’s former flagship church-Covenant Life in Gaithersburg, MD.
In short-they knew about sexual crimes committed against children and they did nothing, covered it up, and allowed a pedophile to exit their church and continue to abuse children for another 20 years. So much for all that Apostolic oversight they used to brag about…

Excellent re-cap….funny, that after years of denial, it is in a secular courtroom that CLC pastors are FINALLY telling the truth about their unwillingness to do anything of substance to help victims of abuse because they feared for their reputations.

All those years of listening to their Apostolic BS about the accountability and oversight they provided-and yet-they couldn’t find the moral courage to do the right thing and contact the police.

Sad that so many lives were ruined to uphold the reputation of C.J. Mahaney and Sovereign Grace Ministries. I hope they will now be seen for what they are and that they, along with their celebrity conference friends like Mark Dever, John Piper, Al Mohler, Ligon Duncan, Thabiti Anyabwile, Kevin DeYoung, D.A. Carson and several others have a heavy price to pay.