If you are convicted of a crime the judge never leaves it to you to determine your own sentencing. Often you also have to pay restitution to compensate the victim, or their family, or the state. You may have asked for forgiveness but will still have to deal with the consequences of the crime such as being incarcerated for what can be a lengthy time depending on your crime, and before the state will grant you parole or release they want to see proof of contrition and restitution to be convinced of your rehabilitation. When a spiritual leader like a pastor or such commits a lascivious or egregious sin, especially over an extended period of time, it has damaging effects on everyone who looked to them for leadership. It is even more damaging when the leader is also the one deciding their own discipline and restoration. A lack of accountability is usually how they fell in the first place, and now even after their fall they continue the same way by being accountable to no one.
Sitting down for six months or one year is not enough if you have been in an ungodly situation for several years. Many fallen leaders are usually surrounded by other leaders and members in the congregation who remain faithful to the iconic image of the pastor they helped build by the narcissism and megalomania they encouraged but didn't check. The complicity of the congregants is masked behind the twisting of scriptures about love and restoration to cover the guilt they often secretly wrestle with before coming to terms with how they ignored all the signs and supported the foolishness and mind control that went on. Some are "church groupies" at best and blind zombies at worst who refuse to leave for whatever reason and will often stay out of some delusional idea that the ministry is being attacked by the Devil or a group of mythical haters to bring down their man/woman of God. In their minds it couldn't possibly be that their leader is wrong and needs to step down. All these things are symptomatic of classic "churchianity"; which is "church insanity".
Rather than deal with these obvious and serious issues people enact a code of silence or put up a wall of blind defense telling others to "just pray". This is akin to an ostrich hiding its head in the ground while leaving its body exposed thinking because it doesn't see the trouble then the trouble isn't there or real. This does not eliminate the threat of predators or stops the lion from making a meal of the ostrich. Just like the ostrich many church attendees are equally foolish in thinking ignoring the failures or open sins of their leadership is somehow love and loyalty to God so they support the leader no matter what they do or who they hurt, and then ignore all the damage caused while caring nothing for those hurt by the leaders. "Restitution" is ignored to jump straight to restoration but if you ignore the root then you will end up with rotten fruit. Forgiveness comes from YAH at the moment you ask, but your fruit takes time to grow and restitution takes time to show because it means restoring those hurt by your actions first before your own restoration and redemption is complete.
Scriptures are misused and abused to further justify the fallen leadership to try and silence others into not speaking out against the leader such as 1st CHRONICLES 16:22 & PSALM 105:15; "Saying, Touch not mine anointed, and do my prophets no harm." This scripture is not reserved for the pulpit only, nor talking about the pastor but about the nation of Israel and in present day application is talking about every born again believer in Christ. The myth of the pastor has been greatly over exaggerated to make them kings among a people of whom the LORD has made all kings according to the scriptures. REVELATION 1:6; "And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen." Only Yeshua the Christ is "King of kings and Lord of lords"; not the pastor regardless of any other title they may claim.
Other scriptures are also used in error to make a case for immediate restoration with no further explanation such as GALATIANS 6:1; "Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted." This verse is for those who have sincerely repented and are more concerned with the salvation of their soul than the salvaging of their image. Restoration is about salvation and not about damage control to keep one's self in ministry. Pride always causes a fall, and restoration only takes place when you sincerely repent to get your relationship with YAH restored, and not maintain your position or reputation. You can't always go back to exactly where you were but you can go back to YAH and start over. The same apostle who wrote Galatians 6:1 also wrote 1st CORINTHIANS 5:5; "To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus." We can't pick and choose what we want to hear and ignore the scriptures we don't like.
Too many leaders are often more sorry they got caught than sorry for what they've done. Instead of stepping down in contrition to save their souls, sanity, marriage, integrity, children, or the respect and feelings of the members affected by them they defiantly stay in place and refuse to be moved. They may have a meeting where they supposedly confess that typically goes something like this: "I did this and that and I have repented to God for it. I am sorry and ask that you forgive me. Now, I'm moving on and won't be talking about this anymore because it is under the blood." Afterwards the folks gathered end up praying for the leader and often "prophe-lying" a bunch of stuff over them. 1st CORINTHIANS 5:2 says, "And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you." Rather than be godly sorrowful for what has been done many will take to social media and other outlets to speak boastfully in support of the errant leader with no regard for what they are guilty of just to show they are "ride and die" not knowing God is judging them for idolatry and rebellion in doing so.
Only in church does the pastor get to judge, sentence, and restore themselves with no questions asked without having to submit themselves to be accountable to anyone, and people accept it. By accepting it you are an accomplice to it as if you did it according to the scriptures. PSALM 50:18; "When thou sawest a thief, then thou consentedst with him, and hast been partaker with adulterers." 1st TIMOTHY 5:22; "Lay hands suddenly on no man, neither be partaker of other men's sins: keep thyself pure." 1st CORINTHIANS 5:9; "I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators". The admonition of the scriptures clearly tell us the Lord's standards in regards to believers who are habitual fornicators, thieves, and adulterers because of the impact of these things on the Body of Christ as a whole. These are sins they are unwilling to forsake, but gloss over as if it is not a big deal. The greater your position of responsibility the bigger the deal it is because of what you have been entrusted with, and the example it sets for others as well as the hurt it causes them.
If being in ministry is more important to the minister than being saved then they have completely missed the point of the parable of the "the lost son" aka "prodigal son". He only desired to be back in the house with his father even if it meant being a servant and not being restored to his former position as a favored son. LUKE 15:18-19; "I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, 19) And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants." When you read the rest of this story what you find out is that the father joyfully restored the son back into the house but never restored his living to him that the son had wasted. In fact getting back all that he had lost was never an issue with the son but only getting back into a right relationship with his father was. He left in pride making demands of privilege but came back in humility only asking humble requests and submitting himself to accept whatever judgment was to be issued upon him. This is not the case with fallen leaders today.
It seems the greater the fame and the bigger the name the less of the blame many are willing to take. If the minister has tied up their personal income with the church then removing them becomes a near impossibility; especially if the church is set up as a "corporation sole" where the pastor has full control. Sometimes the only way for the minister to truly be saved, even if from themselves, is for the members to get some courage and snap out of their brainwashed stupor so they can leave that ministry and go elsewhere. If there's no one there then the minister is forced to move on. Your salvation is portable and travels well. Ministers, so called apostles, bishops, prelates, pastors and so forth please stop comparing yourselves to King David. King David was a government official over an entire nation theocratically ruled by Yah and you are not. Furthermore, his failure is recorded as a cautionary tale of what it can cost you so you won't repeat it instead of use it to justify yourself. When you've fallen down stop trying to hold yourself up on broken legs, and let the LORD save your soul and restore your relationship with Him rather than trying to save your ministry which you can't have without Him. ~ I.J. West