Monday, March 3, 2008

Did Sovereign Grace Ministries Forget or Just Rewrite Larry Tomczak's Involvement

This is another summary of the following blog:

Sovereign Grace Uncensored

I am not a moderator or owner of the other blog. I am just summarizing some highlights here.

As most people know, Larry Tomczak was a co founder along with C.J. Mahaney of both Covenant Life Church and what would later be called Sovereign Grace Ministries. People that are involved with the history know that Tomczak actually mentored C.J. Mahaney and helped him grow spiritually.

Why he left the mininistry is debatable. Mahaney would tell you that it was over how he handled his family and "pride" issues. According to books written by Larry Tomczak, he left over another reason (see below).

Despite the reason, if you search both Sovereign Grace's and Covenant Life Church's website you will not find any mention of Larry Tomczak in their history. That is something when this group owes much of its history to this man and his influence. Some of the entries in their websites leads one to believe that Mahaney was the original pastor and original leader of the original group both men lead called TAG:

In 1974, Gary became a staff member at TAG, a ministry in Washington, D.C., led by C. J.

C.J. has served as Senior Pastor of Covenant Life Church since its inception in 1977. In a special service on Sept. 19, 2004, he passed the senior pastor baton to Joshua Harris.

What Sovereign Grace Ministries states there certainly borders on deception.

Here is what Tomczak has written about why he left the group that was to become Sovereign Grace:

The division between Tomczak and Mahaney, although not referred to explicitly in his book What do you believe about how people get saved? (1998), which seeks to counter the Calvinistic view of the way to salvation, nonetheless is hinted at.

Here is a quote from Larry’s book, Reckless Abandon (2002 pg. 15):

Doris and I, along with one of our teenagers, were threatened in various ways if we did not cooperate with the ministry that we were leaving. We were encountering a spirit of control. We were shunned. A letter was circulated in an attempt to discredit me and to distort the events surrounding my departure. Our own family members were divided. We felt helpless, abandoned and, for the most part, alone. Our experience was very painful. It seemed like some unbelievable nightmare. ….The psalmist records,….”If an enemy were insulting me, I could endure it; if a foe were raising himself against me, I could hide from him. But it is you, a man like myself, my companion, my close friend, with whom I once enjoyed sweet fellowship as we walked with the throng at the house of God” Ps. 55:12-14

This is all something to think about.


Anonymous said...

Steve read this link for a well researched and historic look at PDI, the split that took place and the transition to what is now Sovereign Grace Ministries. This is a great article on the early history! Why SGM does not acknowledge it's past is amazing when one realizes the depth of leadership the PDI movement had!

Anonymous said...

Few people realize that Larry Tomczak, Che Ahn, Loe Engle, David Hess (Pennsylvania Pastor), etc. all left under less than ideal circumstances with PDI now SGM. Che Ahn also briefly touches upon this in one of his books. SGM will need to address their history and roots at some point!

dnx said...

Whatever it is, I just find the book something quite righteous to read. The author may have not saw every aspect of the dating thing but in some aspect you know that he's writings were true yet practical. Do you agree with me?

Steve said...

Here is a recent article in the Washington Times reporting on the Tomczak situation: