Recently Vice President Mike Pence was criticized for invoking the “Billy Graham rule” — that is, not being seen alone with a lone woman other than his wife in private, which the evangelist established in the 1940s. Now, I understand that his connection to President Donald Trump might make him sound hypocritical because of Trump’s rejection of similar decorum.
But, frankly, I think it’s a good idea, especially for a Christian man. It’s good to see someone take his marriage vows seriously not to give even the appearance of suspicion.
Those of you who remember the TV-evangelist scandals of 1987-88 would do well to remember what might happen when such safeguards weren’t in place. Remember, Jim Bakker ended up having an affair with PTL secretary Jessica Hahn, partially when he felt he was losing his wife Tammy Faye (and they ended up divorcing anyway). Then, Jimmy Swaggart was caught in a hotel room with a prostitute. Both men’s ministries collapsed as a result.
Pence has never been an evangelist to my knowledge, but even in Pence’s case — since he is a public figure — the same situation might apply; after all, he would get that tongues would wag were something appear not quite right. Besides, I’ve seen adultery in leadership of my present and immediate past churches and, especially in the latter, how it hurt the church.
Whatever you think of Pence’s politics, and I’m not crazy about them myself, you have to give him a hand for trying to be above board in his personal life. So please — don’t go off on him for, at least in this case, trying to do what's right.