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Oh, My Aching Swaggart Back

Written by Gary North on October 22, 2016

It’s the 30th anniversary of my aching back.

It’s better these days. I sit in a Herman Miller Embody chair.

Yet the story is a strange one.

In 1986, I was speaking at the New Orleans gold conference. I had spoken there several times over the years.

My partner John Mauldin had come along. He had set up a conference with Jimmy Swaggart. Rev. Swaggart had been influenced by an accountant and self-taught dispensational theologian, Dave Hunt. Mr. Hunt was convinced that all social and political involvement by Christians is a snare and a delusion. He did not like what I was doing.

Mauldin had heard that Rev. Swaggart was planning to do a televised attack on us. Mauldin managed my publishing company. He was overseeing the marketing of a series of books on social action that I had edited — I wrote four of them — the Biblical Blueprint Series. Four volumes were out, jointly published by a major evangelical publisher, Thomas Nelson Sons. There were six more to come.

Mauldin wanted put a lid on any attack. Somehow, he got through to the person in charge of Rev. Swaggart’s schedule. This was 16 months before the first hooker scandal brought his ministry to a crisis. Mauldin arranged a conference with him.

His ministry’s facility was an hour’s drive from New Orleans. So, we drove to Baton Rouge.

We had lunch with him and two or three members of the faculty of Jimmy Swaggart Bible College. (The school’s name did not survive the second hooker scandal in 1991.) The conversation was affable.

Then he took us on a tour of his video production facility. It was huge. It was so huge that he got lost. He had to ask an employee how to get out. I did not blame him.

(For the rest of my article, click the link.)

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