On the Clergy Project web site one atheist on the pastoral staff of an evangelical church says, “I live out my life as if there is no God.” Teresa MacBain, raised Southern Baptist by a preacher father and herself a former Methodist minister, declares that she still “ministers” to people because she “cares about them. ” MacBain is the executive director of Clergy Project and proudly declares her rejection of God and Christianity. As might be expected, ultra-liberal MSNBC has promoted the Project with complimentary news stories. CNN featured a non-critical portrayal of the movement on their – get this contradiction -“Faces of Faith” TV show.
While the Clergy Project tries to present a pleasant, kind face to apostasy, there is no need to play nice over this issue. The Apostle Paul warned Timothy, “Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons” (1 Timothy 4:1 NKJV). That’s pretty plain. Whatever emotional or intellectual rationales may be given for those turning their backs on God, the Bible makes it plain that deceiving demons are behind the Clergy Project. Sure, many Christians, even pastors, have doubts from time to time, especially during crises and “dark nights of the soul.” But adamant and insistent denial of Christ and His truth, after once having embraced it, opens one up to demons. To those atheists still in the pulpit, get out! And get delivered!
I hadn’t heard of the Clergy Project until I ran across it in an unrelated internet article. So I went to the web site, and I was in for a shock. I discovered that apostate preachers are not only coming out of the closet, but they’ve also got their own web site to celebrate their departure from faith (maybe they’ll get a call from President Obama as did NBA basketball player Jason Collins did when he came out gay.) I knew that there were some pastors who struggled with doubts from time to time, but that’s a huge step from preachers in active ministry who are actually atheists in disguise. Clergy Project is the place to reveal their true feelings and unbelief, while receiving affirmation as “they move beyond faith” (to quote the web site). Among the issues for which apostate preachers can find solace and support are: “Wresting with theological issues, living as a nonbeliever with religious spouses, finding a way out of the ministry.”