Sin in Church Leadership: What We Can Learn from Matt Chandler’s Scandal (Ep. 99)

December 9, 2022

Church leaders and the culture they create profoundly impact the people in their church, to the point where it is almost impossible for people to separate themselves from that influence. Like fish and the water they swim in, it is easy for church members to not think about how they live and breathe the culture of their church. And while this influence is good and useful when the church is not hiding sin and allowing it to grow, when sin abounds that influence causes the sin to spread throughout the entire church.

Matt Chandler’s Village Church joined the Acts 29 network in 2004, and he spent years working with Mark Driscoll before replacing him as its leader. After becoming president, many of the problems under Driscoll persisted within the organization. On August 28, 2022, Matt Chandler announced that he had had an inappropriate online relationship with a woman and that the church leadership after hiring a law firm to review his use of social media, had recommended that he take an indefinite leave of absence from preaching and teaching. In early December of the same year, he was reinstated.

In this episode, we discuss how sin in leadership affects the church as a whole. We talk about how open sin that is not directly addressed and dealt with causes the church to become hardened to its presence. We also talk about how properly dealing with sin causes righteous fear of God to abound and for people to turn away from their sins. Using the public events surrounding Matt Chandler’s removal, we discuss how dealing with sin in the wrong way not only fails to curb the actual sin, but causes greater harm to the church body by sowing misunderstanding and confusion.

There are multiple things that we address in this episode. We talk about some of Matt Chandler’s history with the Acts 29 ministry, his time with Acts 29 before Mark Driscoll was removed and

Note: We recorded this episode in September right after Matt Chandler was removed as an elder. We have also used some of the footage from a recent Village Church Advent service where Matt Chandler spoke about his removal and reinstatement.

Removal Statement:
Reinstatement Service:


Listen to the audio version here:
00:00 The Situation
19:53 Acts 29
26:40 How Sin Spreads
32:40 Bringing Shame on Christ to Reveal Sin?
40:53 Glorying in Forgiveness
44:04 Dealing with Elder’s Sin
46:12 Ignoring Sin

Production of Reformation Baptist Church of Youngsville, NC
Hosts – Dan Horn, Jonathan Sides, Charles Churchill and Joshua Horn
Technical Director – Timothy Kaiser
Theme Music – Gabriel Hudelson

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