Jack Schaap: The Mess at First Baptist Church in Chicago Magazine

Jack Schaap: The Mess at First Baptist Church in Chicago Magazine December 10, 2012

by Calulu

The most popular post here at NLQ isn’t necessarily a Quiverfull story but one that examines how the Independent Baptist Churches and pastors seem to have a problem with a high percentage of their leadership straying into sexual abuse of women and children. It named two known IFB pastors that ended up with jail time over their abuse of others, Jack Schaap and Charles V. Shifflett.  Jack Schaap: Isolated Incident or the One That Got Caught? is the title.

The interesting thing about that post being the one incurring the most hits is the fact that some of the members of Jack Schaap’s church, First Baptist Church of Hammond, Indiana, have shown up and commented. Most of the comments make two distinct points –

  1. No one at First Baptist tried to cover for pastor Schaap
  2. They don’t like us talking about what happened at all.

Which is all pretty funny considering telling others to stop talking about it is covering up the criminal behavior of their pastor. It’s kind of like catching a toddler eating a big old warm chocolate chip cookie, crumbs and chocolate smeared about his adorable pudgy face remains of the cookie clutched in his hand while he says, “What cookie? I didn’t eat a cookie.”

A few brave souls in the faith world have called out the behavior as unacceptable. But mostly it is ‘Sit down and shut up.’

Yesterday Chicago Magazine released online their January 2013 issue featuring  a lengthy in depth investigative report into the doings of Schaap, the large number of sexual predator pastors linked to Hyles-Anderson college with photos and information on the other pastors.

You can almost feel the panic and upset pulsing through First Baptist Church and Hyles-Anderson college. The members  have been officially called out as covering a multitude of sins  through the years for various things,  not just Jack Schaap taking advantage of someone he was counseling.

You can access the magazine by clicking here. Just skim past the pages with jewelry ads, medicine in Chicago and popular places to eat. The article starts on page 78 with mug shot like photos of A.V. Ballenger, Christopher Settlamoir, Chrester Mulligan, William Beith, Jack Schaap, Tedd Butler, Joseph Combs, Craig Sisson and Russel Overia. It’s called “Let Us Prey”  and it’s by Bryan Smith. The article runs through page 155.

One thing you can say about the article is that it’s obvious that Bryan Smith did his research. We learn that First Baptist Church of Hammond, Indiana is the 4th largest in the nation. There is mention of many of Jack Schaap’s more bizarre teachings, such as him likening the the Last Supper to sex with Jesus and that often mentioned “Polished Shaft” sermon Schaap gave during a youth conference to thousands of teenagers where he simulated masturbation.  There’s a chart of IFB offenders throughout the country. There is talk of the many cover ups, the cult-like thought control, the deaths of children around Hyles son and his various sexual escapades in churches.

Jack Hyles, Jack Schaap’s late father in law set all this into motion many years ago with his teachings, including that corporal punishment must be used on children and if it didn’t’ leave stripes and tears of a broken will it wasn’t enough. Jack Hyles sought by his teachings to control everything about his congregants.  He even joked to his daughter Linda Murphrey about his followers ‘drinking the Koolaid’ they were so obedient to him. Yeah, he cracked a joke about the deaths of hundreds of people, the followers of Jim Jones and the People’s Church in Guyana.

One of the most chilling things in the article is a quote from a former church member about how the congregation and leadership view the sexual or abusive sins of men in the church –

“If a man did stumble – having an affair, say, or visiting prostitutes or abusing children – the question wasn’t how he could have but rather what the woman or child, did to drive him to such sin,’ some former church members say. ‘They have a system where abusers and pedophiles can flourish, because, you can’t challenge men,’ opines one. ‘You have to submit 100 percent of the time and whenever anything goes wrong in a marriage, it’s because the women didn’t do enough.”

How can good sincere people that fancy themselves followers of the teachings of Christ sit under such harmful teachings and blame the victims? It boggles the mind. It’s cult-like brain-washing that does it. It explains all the excuses of his followers here and on various websites urging everyone to shut up about it and other attempts to white wash a rotten structure crawling with maggots and termites. Futile. Silly. Gross.

Well it’s too late for that now.

Comments open below

Read everything by Calulu!

Calulu lives near Washington DC , was raised Catholic in South Louisiana before falling in with a bunch of fallen Catholics whom had formed their own part Fundamentalist, part Evangelical church. After fifteen uncomfortable years drinking that Koolaid she left nearly 6 years ago. Her blog is Calulu – Roadkill on the Internet Superhighway

The Spiritual Abuse Survivor Blogs Network

NLQ Recommended Reading …

Breaking Their Will: Shedding Light on Religious Child Maltreatment‘ by Janet Heimlich

Quivering Daughters‘ by Hillary McFarland

Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement‘ by Kathryn Joyce


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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Lucrezaborgia

    Oh…they are going to be quite irate!

  • I think the writer did an excellent job with the magazine article. And that’s just one of the churches with many bizarre stories. It’s only a matter of time before more are revealed.

  • texcee

    Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. When a group of people give a leader unquestioned power, this is going to happen.

  • Sherri Munger-Tyler

    I grew up in Frist Baptist Church Hammond and attended Hyles-Anderson College. I contributed to Bryan Smith’s article, “Let Us Prey.” (By the way, an expanded version of the article will be posted on the internet sometime today.)

    I just had to say that regardless of what “they” say, members of First Baptist Church in Hammond DID, in fact, try to cover up Jack Schaaap’s criminal activities. When it was first discovered by Terry Duff, chairman of the board of deacons at FBCH, that Schaap was having sex with a minor, he (Duff) confronted Schaap and OFFERED HIM A SIX-MONTH SABBATICAL. Duff waited eight days to contact local authorities, brought in a lawyer before he called police and only called police on the advice of the lawyer, and only after Schaap refused the sabbatical. If that’s not initially covering it up, what is?

    Smith’s article is barely the tip of the iceburg. With any justice in this world, his article will result in other national media outlets blowing the cover off the organized crime ring that exists within the confines of the cultic First Baptist Church of Hammond, IN, that continuously perpetuates and covers up abuse.

  • The Book “Profaned Pulpit — The Jack Schaap Story” is an insider account that tells the story of the man, the church, and the movement in great detail by Jerry D. Kaifetz, Ph.D., a former church member & graduate of their college & seminary. The book is on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Profaned-Pulpit-Schaap-Story-Volume/dp/1479180297/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1355243236&sr=8-1&keywords=Profaned+Pulpit

  • Rae

    Yes, I agree. It does a wonderful job explaining how the culture got started, doesn’t question the credibility of the victims, and at the same time doesn’t demonize all religion or even all organized religion.

  • Sharon Hunter

    This post is so stupid and wrong. Duff and a few men from the church went to the police because it was the right and moral thing to do. What is going on in your life? Who are you to judge another? One day everybody who has posted lies here are going to have to face their maker all by themself. FBC never “covered up abuse”! Duff is the one that fired Schaap. He never “brought” in a lawyer before calling the police. He never offered Schaap a what? Sabbatical? What the heck is that? Wow Sherry Munger went to FBC, so did I. I Loved every minute of being under the great Dr. Jack Hyles. I am still friends with his dear wife and we write regular. So what? This church is still winning souls, helping the broken, running buses, teaching and preaching. What are you doing for Christ?

  • The church is a corrupt cult helping no one at this point. There must be a housecleaning and reorganizing more than what has occurred. Spiritually abusive cult and you are clear proof that you’ve been brainwashed. I will pray that you have the strength to see the truth and come out from under your deceptions.

  • Danny g

    Don’t know where you get your sources or where the magazine gets their sources but in regard to the former members they sound like bitter people who are bitter at God and has nothing better to do than to trash a very Godly church

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

    I prefer the corollary from SF Author Frank Herbert:

    “It’s not so much that ‘power corrupts’ that power tends to attract the already corrupt and the easily corrupted.”

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

    Wonder how many Hybels/Schaap fanboys clucked their tongues and felt really really Righteous at the coverage of the Catholics’ “Pedophile Priest” sex scandals?

    “I Thank Thee, LORD, That I Am Nothing Like Those Romish Papists…”

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

    doubleplusgoodthink, comrade danny g!
    doubleplusgood doubleplusduckspeak!

    Hero of Hybels medal from the hands of Apostle Schaapf Himself!

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

    Hybels’s son (and original Heir to the Throne) having two kids die from what has all the symptoms of abuse and taking the Fifth when questioned about it — how did he stay out of jail? Cops or DA are Members of his Church or what?

    Schaapf (inherited the throne by marrying Hybels’ daughter after the above Crown Prince went down) and so many other Hybels-fanboy preachers gone down for pedophilia/ehebephilia. Well, at least all the pastors’ underage shmuck-sheaths had slots instead of balls, so that made it OK (wasn’t homosexuality, you know)…

    Calulu, you didn’t mention Hybels’ idea of a loyalty test described in the article: Bringing out a bottle marked “Poison”, pouring a shot, then ordering the elder he was testing to drink it to prove his loyalty/submission to God and Hybels.

  • National Informer

    For years I’ve heard rumors of Hyles and Schaap and really wondered what was fact and fiction. I just ran across this article today and I must say that it leaves a lot in question. It’s blogger obviously biased has trouble knowing the difference in how to state facts clearly and repeating the statements of others. If this were brought to court, it would be thrown out before it started.
    Btw I’m not nor have I ever been a member of FBCH. I’ve never even attended. But to be fair, you need facts and the sources.
    Was Hyles, Hyles Jr, or Schaap ever prosecuted? We’re they found guilty? Things like that are important.

  • Slev

    I dont agree. I do have flash backs from the couple years I attended the college and schaap but never got bad vibes or weirdness from Hyles. There were a few obsessed with what people were doing, but I dont think everyone was there in a cult fashion. It did have a weird celebrity like way. People acted like Schaap was Brad Pitt, I was 18 and found it funny coming from the country and even I thought these people needed to get out. I felt very sorry for the kids, because they put out that people need to be perfect alot of pressure, but that is just how you behave as well. I’m always happy to see the kids from there going to church somewhere else still being Christian, but not in such a mega church way. Some really go far off the deep end because of how strict and controlling the parents were. The abuse was more mentally. In a group that large, you are always going to have criminal type people, no matter the organization. I dont want to go back to that style of church again, but You can’t lump the whole lot in with the 5 precent that is a SCHAAP. And do believe me when I know he was pervy. I got called in to his office ALOT. I felt so bad for his two children. He told me once he’d be so ashamed if he daughter went to the mall like I did and talked to guys HAHA. I think he wanted me to be bad. All i thought was wow, poor kids. They’re going to break free one day. My parents are very fundamental christian, we did homeschooling, we always listened to Dr Hyles preaching sermons and I will tell you I am not brainwashed. I go all over the world alone, I didn’t get married to 35 and still havent’ had kids, I enjoy my life. I’m a freedom lover and do not need to be watched all the time. it was more like a military school with chapel than a cult. It was strict and picky about your clothes, but I did meet some of the best friends of my life. My roommate even moved back to my home town with me in 1999 and has never left. She is there now visiting. Be a victor not a victim, love that cheesy line. its really not right to see a few bad people in any religion, SAY ISLAM, or CATHOLICISM and say they are terrorist or priest pedofiles. Same goes here, You need to broaden your horizon and not show such a double standard. PS So glad Schaap is in prison, but I really sympothize with his family and victims. They are not bad people. They are still christians and go to church and just want to live a good life. How is that cult? Having faith and religion is not a cult. It’s hero worshiping a man. Faith is between you and your GOD, your heart. You sound just like the judgemental ones there in the church you are calling a cult.

  • Slev

    Schapp was,

  • Slev

    His son got ran over by a car at I believe 4 years old in the 90s in an accident. I’m not sure about the other one, but I dont think it had anything to do with abuse. He was the black sheep and not really into church then as the rest of the family. Had moved away.