The Ewings: A Tragedy of Errors

What happened to Gary and Pamela Ewing within the first year of pastoring is lamentable enough, apart from the fact it could easily have been prevented more than once. Their story is a patent example of why the apostle Paul, in two different chapters of 1 Timothy, warned against granting ministry responsibility too soon. "Lay hands suddenly on no man," he wrote (5:22), especially "not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil" (3:6).

Growing up in the small Idaho town of Wendell, Gary and Pam were high school sweethearts who got married at the ages of eighteen and sixteen because a baby was on the way. The censure they felt from Pam's parents and the townspeople—especially church members—sealed off any spiritual inclinations, which were minimal to start with. Gary took a few night classes at a vo-tech school in nearby Twin Falls but soon found he was good at selling, and for the next six years money was his god. The young couple scrambled, acquired, ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe to Christianity Today magazine. Subscribers have full digital access to CT Pastors articles.

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

From the Magazine
To the Ends of the Earth
To the Ends of the Earth
More than ever, we need the stories of God’s work around the globe.
Editor's Pick
How to Preach When You Don’t Know Who’s Listening
How to Preach When You Don’t Know Who’s Listening
5 principles for online preaching.