Not Presbyterian: Rev. David Hall Mocks Congregation Exercising Its Rights as a “Coup Attempt”

Perhaps Senior Pastor David Hall is afraid that a requested congregational meeting to discuss continuing his call won’t end well for him.

The Editorial Board of The Midway Guardian has received multiple reports from readers that Midway Presbyterian Church Senior Pastor David Hall has been openly mocking the very serious matter of a petition that has been supplied to the Session to call a meeting to discuss dissolving the pastoral relationship between himself and the church. This comes amidst reports that the petition has been published to certain members of the church as an enemies list by members of the Session. The request for a congregational meeting is a constitutional right afforded to the members in the Book of Church Order (BCO) chapter 25.

The Midway Guardian has verified from multiple persons that on the morning of July 10, 2022 during a lesson, Senior Pastor Hall recounted, “In January I was preaching and I got to Acts 15 on Presbyterian government, and I preached three sermons, and I prayed that the Lord would allow me time to preach through that passage before our “friendly petitioners” reached their peak so that you might hear the Word of God on how the government of the church should be. Yes that coup attempt has been going on for that long.

Who does Senior Pastor Hall think there is a coup attempt against? Himself or Jesus Christ? Given that:

Is it any wonder that a petition met the threshold and was turned in by congregants demanding accountability and their voice to be heard on the question of Senior Pastor Hall’s divisive behavior. The use of careless terminology such as “coup attempt” only serves one purpose – to continue to ratchet up the tension in the conflict that he himself started.

Authoritarian, Not Presbyterian

Senior Pastor Hall continues to show contempt for the processes of Presbyterian government despite claiming to be its staunch defender. He believes in a constitution of convenience – it is adhered to only when advantageous to his own personal ends; but when those pesky sheep on the pew read it, understand it, and utilize it in true Presbyterian fashion – they are met with mockery and abuse.

The Editorial Board of The Midway Guardian would like to remind Senior Pastor Hall of his own remarks in a section of his book on church officer training on depravity:

“Some forms of government appear to trust the ability, intuition, managerial competence, or spirituality of humans more than the collegial style of biblical rule. Just as Acton said, “power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely,” equally it can also be said that if even the finest spiritual people are entrusted with unchecked rule, things will eventually go astray. Presbyterianism, in a number of ways, limits some of the effects of depravity. Its checks and balances do this in a way that few other forms can boast…

Since God gave governments to restrain willfulness, it is helpful to stress regular and thoughtful means of accountability. To best facilitate this, most evangelicals have acknowledged the necessity of constitutions following the faithful patterns of God. Such constitutions serve to delimit unbridled subjectivity and will-reign, exhibiting our firm belief in the need to limit the power of any individual…

Presbyterianism does justice to both the proper authority of an individual congregation and to the catholicity of the church. It provides principles of form that are valid in all cultures and ages. It also supplies sufficient structure, while at the same time it does not strangle due discretion. It preserves both form and freedom. It honors unity and diversity simultaneously, a feat managed only by divine origin.”

Senior Pastor David Hall | A Manual for Officer Training, 2018 | pages 148-149

Senior Pastor David Hall’s denigration and assigning of malicious motive to members of his own congregation with reckless words about a “coup” serve to demonstrate his contempt for true Presbyterianism – even as espoused in his own writings. Hall would rather have the sheep “trust” his “ability, intuition, managerial competence, and spirituality” as opposed to exercising the safeguards provided them in their ecclesiastical constitution – which in this case is a direct challenge to his personal power. Hall is scorning the “proper authority” of the congregation at Midway to decide who their Senior Pastor is – a right in which he hypocritically claims Presbyterianism does unique “justice“.

The Editorial Board, as it has in the past, exhorts Senior Pastor David Hall to repent for his divisive words. Beyond this, they call on David Hall and his Session to immediately call the congregational meeting the sheep have properly asked be held.

David Hall: Why wait? The church is watching. The Northwest Georgia Presbytery is watching. The PCA is watching. It is within your power to end the division you preside over. Are you “striving to live peaceably with all men” in accordance to Romans 12? Or are you clinging to “unchecked rule” in a kingdom of your design within the walls of Christ’s church?