Some cursory digging at this place’s website does not turn up any indication that it is associated with the Southern Baptist Convention, but it does have its own private missions arm called “Fundamental Baptist.” In my admittedly limited experience this seems to suggest an indy church with serious wild hairs. Not that being a fighting fundie is bad, this here redneck is one, but you can’t just be a spiritual wild cat loner with no discipline and hope to do very much right. Nobody has ever bothered to trademark the term “Baptist” which also makes it possible for such folks as Westboro (who aren’t even Christian) to use it without interference.
It is an independent baptist church. It also has a history of sexual abuse problems, according to Wiki:
“The sermon was called The Polished Shaft, and in the many times that Jack Schaap, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Hammond, had delivered it, it was the kind of showstopper that made him a rock star to his flock. (Or would have, had Schaap not habitually railed against the evils of rock music.)
As with most of his sermons at the northwest Indiana megachurchthe 14th largest in the country and the biggest Independent Baptist house of worship in the nationthe message struck as bluntly as a pounded nail: Submit to Gods plan for your life or be snapped like a twig and flung away (as Schaap would demonstrate by cracking a stick over his head, tossing it aside, and barking, Next!).
When you do submit, be prepared to endure excruciating pain. God will hold a metaphorical knife to your throat (as Schaap would illustrate by holding a steel blade against a twig the way an assailant might press on a jugular). Only then, he would growl, will you become a polished shaft: one suitable for Gods bow.
At this point, the sermons climax, Schaap would heave up a high-powered crossbow and fire an arrow into a red X painted on a fake rock a few feet from his pulpit...
... But in July 2010, an hour into the Polished Shaft sermonin a church packed with thousands of teenagers there for a youth conferenceSchaap went further. He lifted a stick in his left hand and a silver cloth in his right. He moved the bottom of the stick near his groin and angled it away from himself. Head thrown back, eyes squeezed shut, mouth gaping, he began rubbing the shaft rapidly with the cloth, up and down, up and down. Ohh! Oh! Ohhhh! Oh! Oh, God, that hurts! he shrieked.
Then, his voice dropping to a guttural whisper, he said, Oh, oh, God. Thanks for what youre making me.
Schaap continued to rub the stickup and down, up and downand converse with God, sometimes angrily, sometimes ecstatically, for more than a minute. What he was doing was unmistakable: simulating masturbation, in front of thousands of children, in the middle of a church service.”