ABUSE & VIOLENCE IN THE CHURCH, Calvary Chapel Franchise, Calvary Chapel Lawsuit, Sexual Abuse/Assault and Churches, Spiritual Abuse, WhoWouldJesusSue?

Pastor Chuck Smith, Founder of Calvary Chapel Churches, Dead at 86

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Alex Grenier, son of Calvary Chapel Visalia Pastor Bob Grenier shares his thoughts on the passing of Calvary Chapel founder, Chuck Smith

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Update and Disclaimer:   I’ve been getting some push back because of publishing this article the same day in which Pastor Chuck Smith died.  I understand the concern and do respect that opinion, too.  If you are visiting my blog for the first time, this place is safe haven for survivors of abuse.  An important part of what I do here is allow victims of abuse a platform to share their stories that were often not allowed to be told, were minimized, or dismissed entirely.  

This presents a dilemma to me.   On one side we have a beloved pastor, father, grandfather, friend who is now gone.  That is sad.  There are lots of wonderful memories.  Yet, is there a “right” time to air a story like this?  When is that time?  I try to put myself in the shoes of survivors and I think I can do that as a survivor myself.  What does it feel like for a survivor to hear the death of someone in a powerful position who had many opportunities to stop abuse, yet failed to do so?  

It is for those people who I have posted Alex’s article.  Alex speaks on behalf for those who have no voice.  

If you feel the timing is inappropriate, I can appreciate that, but have decided to go ahead and keep the post up.  I am doing this especially for those victims in Calvary Chapel churches who have felt abandoned.  I think it is important for them to know that if they are feeling mixed feelings about Pastor Chuck Smith’s death, they are not alone.  This blog exists for survivors.  Please feel free to skip the rest of the post if you disagree with the timing.  

This article is cross-posted by permission from Alex Grenier’s blog, Calvary Chapel Abuse.  As some of you may recall, Alex Grenier was raised by his father and Calvary Chapel pastor, Bob Grenier. I met Alex because he was following my defamation lawsuit brought on by my former pastor.  Alex, like me,  has used his blog to highlight his personal story and other stories of abuse within the Calvary Chapel franchise of churches.  Since that time, Alex has been sued by his father for defamation, etc, and is currently awaiting a lengthy appeal process with the anti-SLAPP lawsuit. I have written several articles on Alex’s situation:

I think it is very important to read Alex’s words. He has been a loud voice defending the abused and has seen the corrupt system in which abuse has been enabled among Calvary Chapel churches. He reached out to Pastor Chuck Smith for help numerous times, brought personal testimonies, etc, to no avail.  Chuck Smith essentially said his hands were tied and couldn’t help.

While many in the Christian world are mourning the loss of Chuck Smith, it is important to look at the  power this man had and what he did and did not do with it.  What does Chuck Smith represent to those abuse victims whose voices remain silenced?  ~JA


Pastor Chuck Smith of Calvary Chapel dead at 86. Daughter reports the Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa pastor and leader of the Calvary Chapel non-denomination has passed as a result of his battle with lung cancer.

 Chuck Smith, co-founder of the Calvary Chapel non-denomination, has died as a result of complications from a battle with lung cancer. He was 86-years-old.

Chuck Smith, co-founder of the Calvary Chapel non-denomination, has died as a result of complications from a battle with lung cancer. He was 86-years-old.

Pastor Chuck Smith of Calvary Chapel fame has died in the early morning of October 3, 2013 according to daughter Janette Smith Manderson. Chuck Smith has been battling lung cancer since he was diagnosed with it in late 2011.

My feelings are mixed.

Some of the last words I heard from Chuck Smith were his calling down God’s judgment on me from the Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa pulpit in classic “Touch not God’s anointed!” form.

Full audio of the public rebuke and warning here:

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From Chuck Smith’s public rebuke of me from the Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa pulpit:

“There is a young fellow…who has created a website…a blog…in which he has been attacking me and Calvary Chapel viciously because his step-father was abusive to him as he was growing up…and he is wanting to bring his step-father down. And…so because I won’t take action against his step-father…because I, really…every Calvary Chapel is independent…I’m not in control of them…nor do I want control of them…I have a hard enough time just being in control of my own ministry. And, I just don’t want to have the responsibility of having to try and control the over 1,500 Calvary Chapels we have in the United States….so he is attacking me also on the blog and saying that I’m covering up all kinds of horrible things and making a lot of accusations and all…”

“…and I called him up and invited him down [this is factually incorrect, I first called Chuck Smith at his office and then reached him live at his home]…to try and sort of make peace if possible.”

“So, I promised him I would look into the situation…and I did…and then I wrote to him a response…and I sent it to his email address…but somehow it didn’t go through. And, it was endeavor on my part for reconciliation…but the email didn’t go through…I don’t know why…and I gave it a couple shots…and it didn’t go through….so I just sort of let it go…so he became really upset that I didn’t respond to his charges and so-forth against me…”

“So I was thinking…what can I do…and how can I defend myself…against all of these charges which are false and lies…and things that he is putting out on his blogsite. As we were finishing here tonight…as I was in my final prayer…the Lord just of spoke to me and said ‘look you’re praying that you’ll learn to turn things over to the Lord…let me fight your battles…and here you’re considering how you can deal with it…just leave it with me. I thought oh yes…and so….[pause, clapping]….I’m thankful for the help of the Lord”


I publicly stated on this blog after hearing that very sobering and hurtful “Touch not God’s anointed” chilling warning from the very powerful and influential Chuck Smith…something that would have rocked most people hearing that chilling warning that “God is on my side and he’ll zap  you!”…I had a feeling Chuck had called down a curse on himself, if God was in fact real, as I knew I was right in these matters.

Chuck Smith was diagnosed with Lung Cancer about a month or so after this public rebuke of me from the Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa pulpit.

I then commented publicly that I had a feeling the cancer would kill him, despite the happy and optimistic updates from his daughter and all the prayers for his healing etc…unless Chuck repented of his lying and his wrong handling of this situation and his wrong public rebuke and warning to me…when he and BG were in the wrong.

Well, the cancer has killed him and Chuck Smith died without repenting of this situation and without coming clean and without seeking reconciliation with me…other than some email that’s lost in cyberspace (according to him).

Calvary Chapel Pastors: Let this be a lesson to you. If you truly believe the “Touch not God’s anointed” garbage…if you truly believe God is “on your side” and you truly believe that critics and those who call you to accountability and responsibility are “of the devil” and that God will zap them for you….then what do you make of this situation? Coincidence? Random chance? Or did God do this as a public statement of who was right and who was wrong?

As a skeptic, I think it’s random chance and just a huge, though very very big, coincidence. I don’t think Chuck Smith or you as a Calvary Chapel pastor are “specially anointed” nor do I think that God will zap your enemies for you, etc. But, what if that dynamic is real? What if God is real and God does step in and zap folks sometimes, like Ananias and Saphira? If it’s true, then what are the odds this is coincidence? Again, I think it’s random chance, I don’t think God is active in this manner…BUT YOU AND YOUR DEAR LEADER DO and have expressed this dynamic and used this “Touch not God’s anointed” warning many times…believing that God does intervene sometimes and does punish folks sometimes in these sorts of matters.

So, what do you believe now? I’m sure the Chuck Smith “faithful” will be as skeptical as Richard Dawkins and any atheist and mark this one down as “random chance” and “coincidence” and “no connection whatsoever”…because the victim, this time, was their guy, their Dear Leader…and no way their Dear Leader could be wrong or could be lying or in sin etc. No way, not a chance.

If you embrace “Touch not God’s anointed!” as Chuck Smith both practiced and professed (see the Christianity Today article where he gives a chilling warning to the reporter and even quotes the verse about ‘touch not God’s anointed, do my prophet no harm’)….then circumstances around Chuck’s handling of the BG situation and Chuck’s subsequent cancer and death should chill you to your core.

My guess is you Calvary Chapel guys are full of s**t and you only profess a belief in spiritual things when it supports your narrative and your leaders and your business….God does all sorts of stuff in circumstances when it fits your agenda..otherwise everything is just random coincidence.

To the family of Chuck Smith, especially Chuck Smith Jr. (who is a great guy)…I’m sorry for your loss. Chuck had many good qualities. He was a mix of good and bad like we all are. He did a lot of good while he was on this planet…and unfortunately, he was also human like the rest of us and did some bad stuff as well. Net-net, I think Chuck as a man was a decent guy, not perfect, but decent. I think the position, the power, the Chuck-worship was a lot of temptation for him and I think that sort of power corrupted him over time, but he wasn’t near as bad as many others who have reached similar success. I think Chuck helped a lot of folks and I think, from what I’ve gathered, he treated you kids well and was a good husband. My beef with your Pops was the Machine he created and his propagation of particular mythology like the “Touch not God’s anointed” crap…and the Moses Model dynamic in the form of the CC pastors are “special” and privileged and God is “on their side” and will zap their enemies. That is dangerous stuff…and it’s the reason I drive this particular point home so strongly. Chuck was not “specially anointed”…he was talented. God was not on Chuck’s side, nor was he against Chuck.

Let my example dispel the myth of “Touch not God’s anointed” and Moses Model CC pastors are “special” and God is on their side. God will not zap you for questioning them and challenging them and calling their b.s. If you don’t believe that, Calvary Chapel-ites, then I must be “specially anointed” as God zapped Chuck and not me (if your theory is true). I am not specially anointed, therefore Chuck’s and Calvary Chapel’s thing is a myth. Run from it. Don’t repeat it. Let all that garbage and nonsense die with Chuck.

Wishing the family peace in their time of grief, wishing the Calvary Chapel pastor progeny of Chuck Smith repentance of their error and a new course for the future.

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225 thoughts on “Pastor Chuck Smith, Founder of Calvary Chapel Churches, Dead at 86”

  1. be real careful how u speak about Gods ANOINTED ones! They do have favor!

    No name: This is also taking scripture out of context and I would challenge you to read the whole chapter as to who this is specifically referring to. It was used only in the Old Testament and not ever in the New. The New Testament does interpret the Old. This passage is not speaking of anyone today. It is specifically speaking about the Kings of Israel and Israel. It is also speaking of doing physical harm.

    Paul nor Christ nor any New Testament writer never said “Touch not God’s anointed.” It is not applicable. We as Christians are all the same in God’s sight. We are all equal. To say this is to wrongly interpret scripture.

    I would have said what I said above regardless of who I died. It’s just the right way to respond, considering it was the day Chuck Smith died. To set aside anger to let the family grieve a loved one who was not a public figure to them, but a husband, father, grandfather.

    The way this passage is used by you is a way of control and elevating leaders to a height. A height that God never meant to elevate anyone, especially if you read Paul’s description of himself, he never thought himself better than those who he was writing to. In fact, quite the opposite.


  2. To add to this no name, Paul told the Bereans they were better than most because they searched and read the scriptures to see if what Paul was saying was in fact true.


  3. Who are the Lord’s anointed? Whoever John is speaking to when he says, “But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all have knowledge. (1 John 2:20, ESV). I am confident this applies to all true believers.

    Who are the antichrists of whom John speaks in the very next verse? I cannot say with certainty, but they may well include some, if not all, who elevate themselves over the rest of us. Be very, very careful when dealing with any “Christian” who appeals to authority to impose their views and their agendas. Run, run from those who would claim authority, privilege and anointing based on something called the Moses Model. They are Nicolaitans.


  4. Debbie

    Much agreement when you say to no name…
    “The way this passage is used by you (And those who taught you this error.)
    is a “Way Of Control” and elevating leaders.”

    Yes – Pastor who Abuse – Pastors addicted to Exercising Authority….
    Love to say they are “God’s Annointed Ones” to CONTROL folks and…
    “Lord it over God’s heritage.” A No, No. 1 Pet 5:3 KJV

    And this tactic works well to create fear – To silence those who disagree. – I believed that lie. Some were special, “God’s Annointed Ones.” And it kept me silent. It took me quite a few years to realize they were NOT special – They were just wrong and CONTROLLING.

    And I was striving to be one of them. Oy Vey!!!

    Jer 50:6
    “My people” hath been “lost sheep:”
    **their shepherds** have caused them to *go astray,*

    1 Pet 2:25
    For ye were as *sheep going astray;*
    BUT are now returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

    I’m Blest… I’ve returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of my soul…

    {{{{{{ Jesus }}}}}}


  5. no name

    You write…
    “be real careful how u speak about Gods ANOINTED ones!”

    Have you ever considered that ALL believers have received an annointing?
    And – You, no name, are special to God, and also have an annointing?

    1 John 2:20 NKJV
    But you have an ANNOINTING from the Holy One,
    And you know all things.

    1 John 2:26-27 KJV
    These things have I written unto you concerning them that seduce you.
    But THE ANNOINTING which ye have received of him abideth IN YOU,
    **and ye need not that any man teach you:**
    but as the same ANNOINTING teacheth you of all things…

    Col 1:27 KJV
    To whom God would make known
    what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles;
    which is **Christ in you,** the hope of glory:

    And, Christ here is the Greek – Christos = Which means ANNOINTED.

    So, no name…
    “be real careful how u speak about Gods ANOINTED ones!”

    You self included… 😉


  6. Gary W

    I think I’m in ageement when you write…
    “Who are the antichrists of whom John speaks in the very next verse? I cannot say with certainty, but they may well include some, if not all, “Who Elevate Themselves” over the rest of us.”

    Because – “AntiChrist” in Thayers = means adversary of the messiah…
    And “Anti” in Thayers not only means against, opposite of…
    “Anti” – Also, means “instead of,” in place of…

    AntiChrist could also mean – “Instead of Christ.”

    And – Time and time again, those “Who Elevate Themselves” do that…
    By taking a “Title/Position” that belongs only to Jesus, in the Bible…


    And “Elevate Themselves” over us lowly sheeples – and divide the brethran.

    And folks wind up looking to a Mere Fallible Human – as ‘Their” shepherd.
    “Instead of Jesus Christ” – as “Their” Shepherd – The Good Shepherd.

    And a human, who calls them self shepherd…
    becomes an “AntiChrist” = “Instead of Christ.”

    And “Their” human shepherds – lead them astray…

    Jer 50:6
    “My people” hath been “lost sheep:”
    **Their** shepherds have caused them to *go astray,*

    1 Pet 2:25
    For ye were as *sheep going astray;*
    BUT are now returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

    I’m Blest… I’ve returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of my soul…

    {{{{{{ Jesus }}}}}}


  7. “To set aside anger to let the family grieve a loved one who was not a public figure to them, but a husband, father, grandfather. ”

    Who are you accusing of “anger”?

    You cannot let it go, Debbie. You may think the blog post “inappropriate” but to accuse people of being “angry” is OTT.


  8. “Touch not the Lord’s anointed” comes from David concerning bad king Saul and it does not map to pastors today. It is more political than it is spiritual.

    “Who are the Lord’s anointed? Whoever John is speaking to when he says, “But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all have knowledge. (1 John 2:20, ESV). I am confident this applies to all true believers.”

    Gary beat me to it as usual but this passage and many others describe ALL believers as part of the “priesthood” and ironically there is NO laity in the NT concerning believers. ALL are “minsters” (priests)

    (Ironically, 1 John goes on to say “you need no one to teach you”. Who is he talking to? Who is the letter written to?)

    There is no caste system in the Body of Christ. It is just that functions such as elders/bishops would burn first or be fed to the lions first because they would be the biggest servants to the body.


  9. I’ve only ever heard “Touch not the Lord’s anointed” quoted as defense and self justification. I know I talk too much. sorry 🙂


  10. If you would like to know a little more about the private life of Chuck Smith watch this:

    I really liked it. I watched it twice.


  11. Not once in the audio did he say “Touch not God’s anointed” you are angry and making things up perhaps your issue with your step father is true call the police there is no statute of limitation on sex crimes. the man was 85 years old and was extremely busy that’s like asking Obama to take time off and be your personal detective for you why are you harassing an old man go after your step dad legally.


  12. rob, I didn’t read Alex’s article as saying that Chuck Smith literally said “Touch not God’s anointed,” only that Smith communicated the moral equivalent. Your comment is ill advised, insensitive to the point of being cold hearted, and abusive. May you never be abandoned by supposedly Christian leaders in your time of need.

    You may wish to go back and read what I posted on October 4 at 9:13 AM.


  13. Thanks other Gary for that confirmation. To say that rob has been disingenuous is to put it very, very politely.


  14. A dear precious friend copied the part of Debbie’s comment about me that JA deleted and sent it to me. It was not JA.

    For anyone who read Debbie’s comment to me before part if it was deleted should be aware that Debbie was well aware from our exchanges in the past that I grew up around Muslims as my mom had a hospitality ministry at the University specifically for them. Many precious Muslim souls were in and out of our home for years. I have also volunteered with Muslim refugees….with Catholics! I have also studied the Qu’ran in a study group. I am no expert but have quite a bit of experience with those cultures from Jordan, Iran, Iraq, SA, Somalia, Turkey and Afghanistan. Each are unique yet similar in some ways when it comes to cultural Islam.

    Debbie has confused “hating” Muslims/Islam with “understanding” the often confusing cultural nuances that she interpreted as “hate”. But since she has deleted her blog we cannot check facts concerning my comments there years back and how I tried to explain such nuances then.

    Far from hating Catholics, my best friend and her husband are Catholic. This past summer on a trip together we attended Mass with them 2x.

    Thanks. I felt I could not let it stand for those who read the comment before it was deleted. It was an unfair characterization. And quite frankly, it hurt.


  15. Not once in the audio did he say “Touch not God’s anointed” you are angry and making things up perhaps your issue with your step father is true call the police there is no statute of limitation on sex crimes.

    Semantics, Semantics, Semantics.
    Because he didn’t say The Exact Words, YOU ARE A LIAR! LIAR! LIAR!

    Like the Tsars of Russia, abolishing the death penalty and substituting 1000 lashes with the Knout (50 being enough to kill). But they could point to the letter of the law and say “Russia has no death penalty.” Or the other Tsar who said “Is no slavery in Russia — here we call it Serfdom.”

    Note also the passive-aggressive blame-shift “You are angry (unlike MEEEEEE) and making things up (unlike MEEEEEEE)”. You’re the one with the problem, not MEEEEEEEE. (I grew up with this kind of semantics and gaslighting on a regular basis.)


  16. Julie Anne: You are so right to post this. Debbie Kaufman is so TOTALLY WRONG. Thank you for the Attorney guy, you’re wonderful also. Chuck Smith Sr. Has been corrected for over 30 years hardcore on his Dogma, lies and abuses and lack of correcting child molestation in HIS evil regime Look at the EVIL of his email, whatever Sr. did and said to Alex Grenier a month before he died and still NO help and taking responsibility for child abuse and woman wanting to be punching bags=battered wives.

    I’ve heard YEARS of horrific stories. Ask Smith Sr. second in command years ago that was forced to resign for taking stand on helping battered woman and Sr. forced his resignation. His EVIL regime gave advice when single parents were at the end of their rope and hope and we’re given advice to where they killed themselves (Debbie and Nancy are dead and what about their children and families?) and HOW MANY MORE LIKE?

    Debbie Kaufman, I’d like to see you do a documentary on all the men, women and children that Sr.’s evil regime gave wrong advice to and did NOT HELP them whatsoever and now have hatred for church/leadership and God because he did NOT exemplify his attributes whatsoever of a loving father that helps, provides, nutures, enhances you to Jesus Christ etc. Know someone who took Tracy, Laura, Chris, Cheryl, Ruth, Mary, Steve, Linda, Perry and so many true stories of Calvary Chapel abuses public to the media and major heads of church leadership to NO avail (meaning complicit and part of the rat pack). Chuck Smith Sr. fruit or lack thereof will come out in his hatred of the family and people in general (women/children especially=male children in that group). Look at the Los Angeles Times articles in archives along with all Blogs exposing corruption. What does Smith Jr. know about Dad and his hypocrisy that the public should know, read L.A. Times articles, “Father, Son and Holy Rift, 2006 and God’s word, plus static-the Calvary radio empire , built by partners in Christian evangelism, is sundered by accusations over sex, money and control” -Febuary 28, 2007 by Christopher Goffard. Also, Ross Institute, do OVER eighty hours of abuse reads on CC in news articles, Blogs, Christianity Today etc.

    CC Wanting children to be molested and wives to be battered if being like Pontius Pilate and telling wives that they wanted to be abused or doing something wrong for them to be abused. Consider Smith Sr. A pretty sick SOB. Some writer in O.C. Weekly wants to take the time and really delve in this Evil Dynasty and it’s leadership. Hope he puts that to action and not just dead verbiage. To the day I die I will consider Chuck Smith Sr., a warlock and will NEVER change my mind. Read James Lloyd’s books, better yet call him up and ask him why he thinks Sr., is a liar. Do your research and don’t be a so called Christian that is brainwashed and can’t think for yourself, do your homework.


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