Too soon? T.D. Jakes protégé Chris Hill wants to preach again 4 months after his cheating scandal broke
Wednesday, August 9, 2017 at 7:46AM
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Bishop T.D. Jakes prays for Chris Hill at Potters House of Dallas Sunday, August 6, 2017 as the disgraced leader looks to be restored following his cheating scandal (Photo Credit: Chris Hill Instagram)Article By Collin Abrams // EEW Magazine News

Share Proverbs 14:34 ESV says, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.”

Chris Hill, former pastor of Potter's House Church of Denver, brought reproach to the Kingdom of God and his family when his cheating scandal broke approximately four months ago. Now he says he’s ready to return to ministry. But is it too soon?

“After many months of intense work, I feel like I'm ready to consider a few of the doors God is opening for me to begin to minister, help others and provide for my family,” wrote T.D. Jakes’ protégé on Instagram Tuesday, August 8.

Bishop Jakes prayed for Hill this past Sunday as the shunned and shamed leader attended Potter's House of Dallas to be ministered to by his spiritual father. Plenty leaders were moved and in agreement with Jakes' display of compassion, grace and love. Yet, some aren’t quite convinced that Hill needs to resume ministerial duties of any kind.

The conservative and deeply traditional sect of Christendom is saying "He needs to be sat down and silenced until further notice."

But how can anyone know how long is long enough?

About 16 weeks have passed since the revelation of Hill’s alleged affair with married parishioner, Shirnae McFarlane, whom he called his “goddaughter,” shocked the faith community.

His estranged wife Joy Hill made the allegations public when she sent a mass text message to leaders of the 7,000-member Colorado ministry, revealing her husband’s unfaithfulness, and their domestic dispute that resulted in police being called to the home.

It was not the first time Hill cheated.

Alleged mistress Shirnae McFarlane (Center) Pastor Chris Hill (Right) and Shirnae's husband --now separated-- Arthur McFarlane (Left) [Photo Credit: Obnoxious TV]

Hill's situation has revived an age-old question: Should preachers be allowed to philander, get busted and then step right back into the pulpit when only a few months have passed?

Some say the reverend has already repented and should be able to lead others again. On the other hand, many are saying no and that Hill needs more time to go through counseling, sit down, reflect on his sin, and feel the repercussions of his disgraceful actions.  

Despite the outcry against his rapid return to ministry, Hill says Bishop Jakes is in his corner and is helping to “restore” him.

“Today I am so grateful to God for my Pastor Bishop Jakes. Yesterday he was used by God to heal and to begin to restore my brokenness,” wrote Hill in his online message. “Deliverance coming from the heart of a true Father in the Faith is indescribable unless you have experienced it. Though I have preached it to millions before, NOW I have lived it for myself. I know how the prodigal son felt when he finally made it home. Imperfect, broken, sorry, but finally home.”

He added, “Thank you Bishop Jakes for being a touchable example of the Love of Jesus Christ Thank you for always keeping the light on and the door cracked so that we can ALL come home.”

Dr. Chris Hill and his estranged wife Joy Hill (Photo Credit: TBN Africa/Vimeo Screen Capture/ EEW Magazine Illustration)

In the aftermath of the affair, coming home to receive teaching, guidance and instruction is applauded among Christian leaders. But lots of folks frown upon the notion of Hill stepping behind the sacred desk so soon to teach on a lifestyle he has not lived in quite some time.

“Only my faith in God has sustained me through these challenging days. I've gone through a lot of soul searching, professional counseling as well as spiritual guidance from my covering,” Hill claims.

He has not mentioned the state of his family, however. In Lady Hill's infamous text message, she said, "I'm willing to work on our marriage, but pastor doesn't want it."

Asking for the Body of Christ to intercede for him, Hill said, “I solicit your prayers as I intend to be selective, accountable and gradual so I don't over extend myself! I believe that God isn't finished with me. Thank you to all who have expressed their interest in helping me on what I'm calling ‘The Road to Recovery!’”

Again, should he so rapidly go from being taught to teaching? From being helped to helping? From being counseled to counseling? From being coached to coaching?

Not if you ask someone who's been through a similar situation.

Pastor Riva Tims, whose late husband Zachary Tims was unfaithful in their marriage, told CBN she wished she “could have just had my husband sit down for a year.” Instead, the pastor prone to infidelity and drug addiction returned to ministry after only three months.

Riva Tims was a loyal wife to Zachery Tims and a devoted first lady at New Destiny Christian Center-- the church she co-founded with her then husband (Photo Credit: NDCC)

According to the widowed pastor of Majestic Life Ministries in Orlando, those who encouraged such a quick comeback for the embattled preacher unknowingly acted as "enablers."

“I wanted my husband. And I wanted my family. If that meant that we had to sit down or step away from the pulpit for a season, I was willing to do that," she said.

Whatever your thoughts, instead of judging pastors, namely Hill whose scandal is fresh on the faith community’s radar, Bishop Jakes is encouraging forgiveness in restoration.

On Instagram, the mega pastor shared 1 John 1:8-10 NIV: “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us.”

Styling Hill as a "prodigal son," the 60-year-old MegaFest founder captioned a photograph of him laying hands on the broken pastor, “Don't be afraid to come back to Him! Every prodigal son ought to be able to come home!”

RELATED: What if your pastor gives into temptation like Chris Hill did?

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