(Article first published as Pastor Paula White Appointed to Succeed Pastor Zachery Tims on Technorati)
Last Thursday, leaders of the New Destiny Christian Center, a Florida megachurch founded by the late Zachery Tims, made it official that Paula White is the church’s new senior pastor. This announcement came on the heels of weeks of much speculation that she would be the new leader. But this decision on the part of church leaders is not without controversy.
Riva Tims, former wife of Zachery Tims, announced last Thursday that she had filed a lawsuit against the church. She and her husband started New Destiny over 15 years ago. The couple divorced in 2009, and Riva left to start her own church. Her ex-husband, the late Zachery Tims, was found dead in a New York hotel last August. According to the Christian post, Riva Tims referred to the selection process that handed Paula White the job as the new senior pastor as “negligent and illegal” as well as “deceptive.” Also, she refers to New Destiny as her children’s lawful inheritance.
OK, enough for the background. What shall I say about this matter? Oh, yeah, here we go: The church did not belong to Zachery Tims, it does not belong to Paula White, it does not belong to the board of directors, it does not belong to Riva Tims, and it does not belong to her children. The last time I checked, the Bible says that Jesus Christ is the head of the church (Colossians 1:18).
That brings me to a second point about the Paula White-appointment. Because Christ is the head of the church, church leaders should be God-fearing and must conduct the church’s business in a way that brings glory to His name. In this case, that is not what appears to have been done. This I say because Pastor Ira V. Hilliard, pastor of New Light Christian Center Church in Houston, Texas, resigned from the board of bishops who were charged with aiding New Destiny in the transitional process. In a December 15 video, he said: “My commitment to integrity will not allow me to support something that I believe is deception and that compromises previously agreed upon procedure and protocol.”
What a mess. From what I can see, the congregation at New Destiny Christian Church has not been well served by its board and other subordinate leaders. But the good news is that the church is not without help. Christ is still Lord, and He neither slumbers nor sleep.
Copyright © 2012 by Frank King. All rights reserved.