Monday, September 28, 2015

Rampant Ideological Hylesism

People who rejected and still repudiate Jack Hyles at the same time welcome his ideology.  They aren't opposed to Hylesism.  If you asked them if they supported Hyles, they would scoff at you and deny with vehemence.  Yes, they support the ideology if you remove the Hyles label.  It's still his ideology, but doesn't have his name attached.

There were reasons why Hyles's philosophy and practice worked at expanding the size of his organization.  Hyles may not have been as big as he said he was, but he was still huge.  When he was on the road, he attracted a lot of people too, very often packing out gigantic auditoriums with people who wanted to hear him.

Hylesism goes way back before modern day iterations of the same ideology.  People who were and really hard on Hyles keep what was corrupt about Hyles.  They may not use everything that he preached and did, but they operate with significant similarity, so that you should understand that they practice Hylesism.

I was around and close enough to observe Jack Hyles at his hey-day, and what I see in large evangelical churches is the same essential methodology and philosophy.  From what I see, they don't just support Hylesism, but in many, if not most, cases, they have taken Hyles methods and philosophy past what he did.  They go further than Hyles in doing Hyles.

The success of Hyles did not and does not center on authoritarian leadership or dress standards or using the King James Version.  The latter were not the issues in his day that they are today.  People knew then, but now people know even more, that there was corruption at First Baptist Church in Hammond.  Today someone could say that they don't like Hyles because he abused people.  The abuse part of it was more a byproduct of the philosophy, not the philosophy of Hylesism itself.  The philosophy though is what is rampant still today.  I contend that Hylesism hasn't regressed, but is believed and practiced at an all time high. I know it is in our area.  Again, I witnessed Hyles at his greatest power and influence from fairly close proximity and I see many today as essentially the same as him.

What I'm saying here is, don't tell me you opposed or oppose Hyles.  You are worse than him.  You have embraced Hylesism, so don't act like you don't like him, that you are against what he did.  You are not.  You are the same as him.  Almost every mega church today follows Hylesism and even those who are not mega churches, mainly because they just aren't as talented at the implementation of Hylesism as many others.  Some men like me know what is necessary to be where Hyles was and what the modern version of him is, but they choose not to be that way.  They know it's wrong.  They would feel guilt over going that direction.  I recognize that some just couldn't do Hylesism, so don't even try, but many could do it, do it very well, but still don't do it.  They know it's wrong.

On top of people believing and practicing Hylesism, there are those who, even though they would repudiate Hyles, don't repudiate Hylesism.  They continue fellowship with Hylesism. They reward the latter iteration of it.  They may not do everything those churches do, but they don't confront their practice.  They would call it a non-essential or area of liberty or not something over which to be judgmental, expressing thoughts like those.  Many would say that those churches have many good things that we can learn from them.  They do some things very well that can be emulated that aren't wrong, so just pick through the bones to find the meat, they might say, and leave the other behind. It's OK, they say, to sort through it and implement what you will not have a problem with and then leave the other behind.  Is that really how harmless it is?

I've decided to write at least two posts on Hylesism.  It is rampant in fundamentalism and evangelicalism.  Those who either follow it or tolerate it are in the vast majority in fundamentalism and evangelicalism.  I wanted you to think about it in principle in this first post, but I'm going to come in Wednesday to flesh out some about it's meaning and who is doing it who would also contend that they are nothing like Hyles.

To end this first post, I see Hylesism, as using human means to attract a crowd for evangelism.  Hyles's church manual focused on numerous areas to increase the crowd size.  A theology is then formulated to match  the practice and that's also a philosophy.  The Bible doesn't teach it, but it is shown anyway to teach it by those who want it to exist and continue existing.  Hyles and the modern purveyors would defend it in similar ways.  At the root of it is deceit.  The method is formulated to sell Christianity like a product.  Very often today, the people, who say they aren't doing it and are against, are actually doing it.  Not saying you're doing it is part of the philosophy and the method. Those who criticize aren't worth listening to because they aren't very big.  Some would even say that God isn't blessing in those places, or they're dead or they don't know what they're doing, so they're not worth listening to.

I look forward to spending more time exploring Hylesism with you.

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