For forty-two years, Jack Hyles was the king of First Baptist Church in Hammond, Indiana. During his tenure, Hyles’ son David served as youth pastor. After his son became enmeshed in a sex scandal, Jack Hyles moved David to Garland, Texas so he could assume the pastorate of Miller Road Baptist Church. There, David Hyles continued his predator ways. Once pictures of Hyles with naked female church members were discovered, he was fired. If you are not familiar with Jack or David Hyles, please read The Legacy of Jack Hyles, UPDATED: Serial Adulterer David Hyles Has Been Restored, Serial Adulterer David Hyles Receives a Warm Longview Baptist Temple Welcome, The Scandalous Life of Jack Hyles and Why it Still Matters and The Mesmerizing Appeal of Jack Hyles. Rumor has it that David Hyles is planning on making a comeback. As far as I know, Hyles has never publicly apologized for past sexual misconduct. There are three reasons that Hyles refuses to address his immoral past. First, he is the son of Jack Hyles, and if there is one thing that we know about Hyleses, it is that they NEVER admit making mistakes or being wrong. David Hyles’ father was a narcissistic megalomaniac who saw admitting wrong as weakness. He taught countless First Baptist members and Hyles-Anderson College students what I call the Jack Hyles Maxim: If You Didn’t See it, It Didn’t Happen. (Please see If You Didn’t See it, It Didn’t Happen.) David Hyles, taught well by his father, has yet to confess the error of his ways.
Second, David Hyles knows that he could be held criminally liable for some of his past actions, including the bizarre death of his 15-month-old son. It is likely that Hyles had illicit sex with numerous women. Some of them might have been minors. As his preacher-brother-in-law Jack Schaap learned, sex with minors can land you in prison. Schaap, who became pastor of First Baptist after the death of his father-in-law, had a sexual relationship with a minor girl he was counseling. Schaap is serving a 12-year federal prison sentence for his crimes.
Third, David Hyles’ theological beliefs are such that restitution and public confession are unnecessary. Hyles wrote the following on Facebook:
Some would have us confess our sins endlessly. Instead we should confess them but once and then give thanks for His forgiveness endlessly.
David Hyles believes if he says “my bad” to Jesus, that all is forgiven. No need to make restitution or publicly account for his vile behavior. I talked to God, Hyles thinks, and he said, Hey David, you are my son, I forgive you, end of discussion! Hyles wrongly thinks that his “sin” is between him and God. People such as myself — an atheist to boot — have no right to poke our noses into his sex life — past or present. Ironically, David Hyles supports attempts to legislate private sexual behavior between consenting adults. If Hyles supports government and religious intrusion into the sexual affairs of Americans, shouldn’t his sexual behavior be fair game — especially those acts that were criminal in nature? For Hyles, the blood of Jesus, applied in 1 John 1:9 fashion: if we confess our sins, he [God] is faithful and just to cleans us from sin and ALL UNRIGHTEOUSNESS, is his get out of jail free card. Pray, confess, and God wipes his slate clean. A sweet deal, I’d say. One that allows people to commit horrific acts and have them erased by saying a bit of religious mumbo jumbo.
This is why men such as Bob Gray, Sr. and Bob Gray II, past and present pastors of the Longview Baptist Temple, can warmly welcome David Hyles into their church. Hey, the Grays think to themselves, God has forgiven David Hyles. Who are we to withhold forgiveness from him. If God can forgive the David of the Bible, surely God can forgive the David who once preyed on the young women of First Baptist Church.
It should come as no surprise, then, that the Independent Fundamentalist Baptist (IFB) church movement is rife with sexual abuse problems. I know of one church where a man was caught TWICE having inappropriate sexual relationships with minor boys, yet today he is faithfully serving Jesus in an IFB church. Evidently, IFB men are free to stick their dick wherever they want, knowing that God will forgive such sins and wipe slates clean. Never mind the fact that these predators often continue to prey on unsuspecting people, no matter how many times their records are washed clean by Jesus.
In 2015, David Hyles wrote a book titled Jack Hyles’ Passion for Sunday School. The forward was written by his mother Beverly Hyles and the book was published by Hyles-Anderson graduate and Jack Hyles worshiper Bob Gray, Sr. I wonder if David Hyles will use the proceeds from his book to make restitution to the people he has harmed? I wonder if Bob Gray, Sr. will forgo his profits on the book and use them to set up a fund to pay for psychological therapy for those who lives have been destroyed by Jack Hyles, David Hyles, Jack Schaap, and those who have followed in their footsteps? Not a chance. Prayers have been prayed, time to move on. What about those who can’t move on, people who could be greatly helped if David Hyles or other sexual predators at the very least admitted what they did? Shouldn’t David Hyles and those who continue to shamelessly support him do everything they can to bring wholeness to those so deeply harmed by his debauchery? Of course not. These “sins” happened years ago. Time to forgive, forget, and move on. Follow in the footsteps of David Hyles! Stop being bitter or angry. A brand new life awaits those who will just pray the magic prayer. Imagine how many souls could be saved if everyone just forgot about the past and got busy preaching the old-time gospel. Or so goes the thinking of David Hyles and those who continue to carry the water for the Hyles family. I, for one, will continue to periodically remind readers of past IFB transgressions, hoping that offenders will one day make restitution, victims will find peace, and predator-friendly churches are metaphorically burned to the ground.
Kool-aid, Kool-aid, tastes great! Kool-aid, Kool-aid, can’t wait!
Once you taste the very sugary, sweet forgiveness in a long swig of the juice (sic) you take your place in the Kool-aid Club where you must continue to harm yourself and others but with the Cross raised high in your own defense. Surrrrre, I made a mistake, maybe more than one but I laid at the foot of the big Kool-aid pitcher in the sky and now, swig, swig, I’m good to go again! Why don’t we strip down and talk about God’s Plan!
Gerencser, you make it all sound dirty but it wasn’t like that at all, I’m sure! Sometimes, while witnessing to women, they seduce a man and he falls under the spell. What is a man to do when confronted with wet lips and ankles? And KNEES! Good gracious, be merciful to the poor fellow and give him another Kool-aid Club to lead… The dear Lord works in wondrous ways. What if, for (s)instance, dear Jesus is using these ‘altercations’ to weed out the harlots, to purify the church? You see my point, Gerencser?
Not to worry: Many a pastor has longed to be used as a Hyles is used, to be a firm instrument for good in the world. Let us prey.
David Hyles is not saying you do not have to confess. There are people who sincerely are sorry for their sins and ask forgiveness but rather than receiving that forgiveness they live in guilt the rest of their lives. If they confess with a Godly sorrow then they are forgiven. David Hyles actions were wrong, but be careful of your words because they are as treacherous as what you depict his words to be. I’m not bashing your article, but you have enough on him not to try and twist his words too! Stick to his deeds but there’s no reason to try and make him worse. Said with respect.
Hyles should be living with guilt the rest of his life for what he has done. I’m not a Christian, so the sin, get forgiveness, and forget way of dealing with bad behavior carries no weight with me. Hyles’ crimes were public — and yes his actions were criminal and this is the likely reason he says nothing — and he needs to publicly account for what he did. He may very well be a fine husband and father today, but that doesn’t excuse or expunge what he did in the past.
Christians assert that atheists have no reason to be moral, but to me it seems Christians with the “get out of jail free card” are at parity with atheists for lacking any motivation to stay on the straight and narrow.
I can’t blame him for using his esteemed last name as a meal ticket though. I mean what else is he going to do?
P.S. Bruce, your take on the Hyles and the origin of IFB might make an interesting book.
I have thought about the book, Troy. Thanks for prodding me to think harder. 🙂
If u have done wrong. And or it becomes public or not.yes you can confess to God for forgiveness, but if you cause somebody pain and are to proud to understand that they may need u simply say your sorry. with no excusses it not only helps. but it usally helps all involed if u have a true relationship with the father in heaven. he can work it all out trust in him and as u do he will dierect your path. he loves us all and he knows we mess up but he is able to fix all things good bad and ugly.
My mother was a victim of this evil man in the early 80s at miller rd baptist in Dallas. I would love to send this man a personal message.
I just realized….he looks like Dennis Reader, the BTK killer.
I probably knew your mother as I too was one of Dave’s countless victims.
Miller Road Baptist in Garland Tx was the site of many lives being damaged, if not completely destroyed by this predator and con artist.
I am 74, an active engineer in the steel industry, a biblical scholar and historian and writer on prophecy, and a writer of miraculous stories, and one that likes yours, because you are open and honest. I believe in God because I know him to be real, because his handiwork testifies of him, because he has revealed himself to me, because I hear my shepherd’s voice, and because fifty years after being saved there came the day when I found a deep personal relationship with him that continues to grow daily. Regards
That’s nice, Jim. My experience is rather different – no belief in gods, no perception that any gods are real, no divine revelations or relationships at all, at any time during my life. Interesting how two people can see two very different things, isn’t it?
And I do not believe in your god because they are not real, because their handiwork does not exist, because they have not revealed themselves to me, because I have not heard their voice, and because x years (you aren’t getting that number) after searching there came the day when I found that they did not exist.
But here is the reality. I am perfectly happy to let you believe and live as you think is correct, as long as you and your religious friends can let me live and not believe as I think is correct. I do not care if you worship the christian God, or Brahman, or Allah, or Thor, or practice as a Buddhist or Pagan or some other belief, or are an atheist. But I do care when religion is used to control or manipulate others that do not follow that religion. I do care when religion is used to cause suffering in people. I do care when religion is used to cover up criminal acts. I do care when religion is used as a weapon to force others to live by the religion’s set of rules.
So by all means, believe in your god, but do not tell others how they should believe or live. Allow them to be the people they are, and accept them even if you do not agree with their beliefs or lifestyle. Do not elect politicians that hold your religious view so they can make laws to support your religion. Do not try to make your country a religious country, and then insist that everyone live by the decrees of your particular sect of your religion, or by the basic tenets of you religion. Don’t manipulate vulnerable people into joining your particular religious sect. Don’t use your religion as an excuse to discriminate against other people.
Unfortunately, Christians are incredibly bad at leaving non-christians to live their lives.