Unmasking the Domestic Abuser in the Church

Hezekiah's Prayer as a Model for Us

Our friend Lynn, who has experienced intense abuse at the hands of those who should have loved her, tailored the prayer of Hezekiah [2 Kings 19:14-19] for her situation and thought it might also be a good help for others to fit to their own experience. You will notice that it is a prayer that many if not most pastors and church members would reject as being “harsh, unforgiving, unkind, bitter….” yada, yada. But here’s what trips those people up – it is drawn right from Scripture.

So, here it is:

“Lord, the God of Israel, enthroned between the cherubim, you alone are God over all the kingdoms of the earth. You have made heaven and earth. Give ear, Lord, and hear; open your eyes, Lord, and see the great [physical, psychological, sexual, mental, emotional, financial, and spiritual] burden placed upon me by the words and actions of these wicked men and/or women – [insert name or names of those who abused you] – all who profess know you, follow you, and speak for you; listen to the vile, manipulative, fraudulent words they have spoken to me in your name. Their words and abusive actions continually profane your holy name making it a mockery in the world. Let the stench of their sin intensify in your presence to the point where your anger is kindled and you take action against them.

Repay each one of them for the evil they have inflicted upon me and bring about their swift destruction, so that no one else may be harmed in the way they’ve harmed me. Strike fear into their hearts so that they are paralyzed by it. Torment their minds to the point where the only way they will get relief is to restore all that they have stolen and destroyed in my life. Let their relationships crumble and have no one trust them, not even family. Place an unseen mark on them that others will sense and know to stay away from. Have their resources dry up so that they have to struggle and toil to keep a roof over their heads and food on the table. Inflict their bodies and minds with diseases that will mimic all the physical and emotional pain they’ve inflicted on me and their other victims that doctors cannot provide relief for or healing for. Let them experience the [list the specific ailments you have or are experiencing. E.g. PTSD, anxiety, heart palpitations, shortness of breath, chronic inflammation and fatigue, brain fog, and poor quality sleep] every day of their lives until they genuinely repent of their sin to you and make full restitution to me. 

Withhold your blessing from them and magnify the curses their actions deserve until they genuinely repent of their wickedness and they are willing to offer full restitution to me for the [say the specific harm inflicted on you – E.g. physical, mental, emotional, psychological, sexual, financial and/or spiritual] harm they have inflicted on me. If they will not repent, then continue to inflict the punishment their wickedness requires until you bring about their just end O Lord. 

Now, Lord my God, deliver me from the after effects of their wickedness. I humbly ask that you restore to me all that was stolen, damaged or destroyed – be it [ insert what you lost or was destroyed here.  E.g. finances, property, relationships, self-confidence, payment for past work, health, everything…] – as a sign of your faithful love to me, like you did with your servant Job, and so that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that you alone, Lord, are God. To You be all the glory, honor and praise.



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  1. wingingit

    Anyone who digs a pit, he will fall into it and if he roll a stone, it will roll back on him (proverbs 26:27).
    Lord, let the pit he falls into be a pit of despair at what evil he has wrought on his own children and the wife who loved him and did him good all the days of her life and who he brought to ruin and exhaustion.
    Anyone who has it in their heart to pray, please pray for my children and me. We are oppressed and so exhausted by the constant legal and financial abuse. Two of my children are currently locked up in a house 2000 miles away for a ‘summer visit” where they are being fed only one meal a day and forced to sit alone in two separate bedrooms very close to 24 hours per day. They are struggling in their spirits and every time we try to talk on the phone or do a video call, no matter how quiet they are, he hears them and comes into the room and makes them hang up from us. They are pale and have dark circles around their eyes. The court appointed guardian went and saw them and says there is no abuse because they are getting some food and there are no visible bruises.
    Please, praying friends, ask the Lord on our behalf to somehow stop this abuse now and bring back my children safely and immediately. To stop his lawsuit and force him to stop harassing us all.
    I don’t want to ever doubt the Lord and his mercy, but I find myself asking, “How long, Lord? How long do my children and I have to endure the wickedness and selfish cruelty of this man and his cohorts?”

    • I find it astounding that the court appointed whatever fails to mention water. Even in states with minimal animal cruelty protections, they say the animal has to have water and food. My heart goes out to you!

    • Wingingit, I am praying for justice for you and your children! May the Lord of Hosts send His angelic army to protect and rescue your children and may you be surrounded by war angels to do the battle necessary on your behalf against the kingdom of darkness. May our Most High God intervene as only He is able and deliver your children from that awful environment sooner than later. May your heart and spirit be strengthened by the Lord’s love and peace that surpasses all understanding.
      The Lord loves you and your children more than you can imagine and HE WILL BE GLORIFIED in the victory that He brings about. Never forget that “With God All things are possible.” (Matthew 19:26)

    • Ms. E.

      May your children be delivered quickly from this evil. May there be no more delay. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

  2. IrisJane

    Praying for immediate rescue of your children Wingingit, for a miracle, for strength and courage, for your faith to keep standing, and also for the social workers, that God would instill righteousness and common sense in them, that they would be willing to fight for your children’s freedom, and not just let them barely survive.
    I know all of us true victims have prayed and prayed, in love and hope that the wicked will change for the better, but maybe now it’s time to switch gears and pray in this manner, which is so foreign to the love and acceptance mantra.
    I’m so sorry this is happening, it seems that evil is or has taken over every institution and that the worst people are running and ruining everything.
    May God bring you peace and bless you and your children despite the wickedness and despite the battle you are in. I know that’s a tall order, but I pray it none the less, and may He start building his army of thousands of warriors to combat the wicked insanity that is so pervasive and prevalent now. Hugs to you.
    And well done Lynn, that’s a perfect prayer, may it open the eyes of and hearts of many to see the truth of what needs to be done to all these wicked abusers.

  3. Lynn

    Much of what is taught in today’s church regarding how to pray, especially with respect to those unrepentantly harm us and who are our enemies, is wrapped up in this toxic positivism and willful blindness toward evil resulting in perpetual injustice.
    This is pure evil.
    Do you think that the first century Christians were asking God to bless Nero as he sent them to the lions to be eaten or burned them alive? Did Tamar bless Ammon after he raped her? Did Jesus bless the Pharisees as they sought to kill him and when they succeeded in having him crucified? Did Paul bless the wolves like Diotrphes who were inflicting pain on him as he proclaimed the gospel to the gentiles? Did Christians around the world throughout the ages who were martyred for their faith pray blessings on their torturers before they died very painful, gruesome deaths?
    Of course not! They cried out to God asking for deliverance, for the strength to persevere, and for his just wrath to be poured out against those who harmed them. They let their anger and deep anguish be made known to God, cried out for deliverance, and asked God to justly deal with their abusers in the manner their wickedness deserves. Revelation tells us their blood still cries out for justice in the courts of heaven demanding God take action and punish their abusers. The most prominent examples of this type of prayer are in the Psalms. At least 21 of the 150 psalms are considered imprecatory.
    So, Pastor, elder, teacher, why do you insist on shackling God’s people by failing to teach them how to pray? If you will not teach your flock how to correctly pray imprecatory prayers, you are failing in your job as their shepherd and revealing that you are just a hired hand not a true shepherd to the people of God. When you do so, you are placing unnecessarily heavy burdens on them causing them to despair and lose heart. How do I know this? I experienced it for nearly 4 decades before God graciously opened my eyes.
    Imprecatory prayer is a powerful weapon granted to God’s people because it offers victims of abuse the emotional release they need by surrendering of all of their negative emotions to God asking for him to get justice for them and to punish the wicked. It is a godly response in the face of abuse. It is okay – dare I say godly – to ask God to bring about their destruction as a consequence of their sins. We have multiple models of it in scripture. If you sow the wind, you will reap a whirlwind. Asking God to bring about the harvest the abusers actions deserve is not sin. It is an act of faith and demonstrates to God you trust in Him and his perfect justice.
    The prayer template I wrote that Pastor Crippen shared above, I modeled after Hezekiah’s prayer in 2 Kings 19. Hezekiah is in over his head and is being threatened with complete destruction by the enemy. Like Hezekiah, we too go through trials where we are in over our heads and are in need of God’s deliverance from the hands of evil people and the effects their wickedness leave on us.
    This customizable template is an imprecatory prayer designed to ask God to intervene in the life of the one who prays it. Notice it is not coming from a place of vengeance at injustice – even if it is perceived to be because it is asking God to take negative action against the enemy – but as a reminder to God that those who harmed me have profaned his Holy name. I am asking him to step in and defend HIS honor and reveal HIS glory by delivering justice against those who have inflicted harm against me in HIS name. I am asking for God to bring about the results that a life of wickedness is promised in scripture. You too can do this by praying like Hezekiah did.
    I also view this prayer as an opportunity I have to ask God to use destructive means to bring about their repentance, if that is part of His will for their lives. I am not asking for God to take action against one who doesn’t deserve the punishment I am requesting. Actions have consequences. Asking God to enact the correct consequences is part of how we seek justice for our abuse. Many times this may be the only recourse we have this side of heaven.
    I know that may be off putting to those of you who believe that because of Christ’s death and resurrection, God now loves everyone. That belief is a twisting of scripture that threatens your salvation if you cling to it. God doesn’t love everyone equally. He doesn’t love the rapist, the abuser, sexually immoral, one who profanes His name, the false witness who slanders the people of God, those who live a life of willful unbelief, the despot who’s hunger for power results in the deaths of millions of people. He may offer them a measure of common grace, grant them wealth and influence for a period of time, and extend His compassion while they live, but that is not the same thing as the love he has for his chosen people. What’s 20, 30, 50, 80 years of luxury in comparison to eternity in hell?
    How dare I suggest that God doesn’t love them and will punish them for their wicked actions? I dare because that’s what I see modeled for me in scripture. In Psalms 11:5, we are told that God hates the wicked. Don’t confuse your idea of what hatred looks like with how God demonstrates his hatred. Like all emotions there is a positive side to hatred and a negative side. Since God is good, perfect, and sinless, his hatred is pure – free from any of the corrupting that sin brings to it. It manifested in the OT when he destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah and with Ananias and Sapphira in the NT. Since God is the same yesterday, today, and forever, then His hatred of the wicked and their sinful actions still remains, even after Christ’s death and resurrection. He may appear to be slower to take action on it than he did in the OT, but the emotion still remains. Those He did not elect to be a part of His family are not loved by Him in the same way as his family is.
    Salvation is extended to all people, but only God can regenerate the heart of a human opening their eyes to the truth of Christ. Nothing you or I do can make that regeneration take place. We are to be the messengers of light in a world full of darkness. But until the Holy Spirit sparks their heart and mind with the truth and opens their eyes, nothing we do can make that happen. Yes we can and should pray for them. Yes we should share the gospel with them when the opportunity presents itself. Don’t mistake your efforts as somehow a guarantee that God will give you the result you want.
    Christ’s sacrifice is meant for HIS people (John 10:11), not for every human on the planet. Those who die in their sin will receive their just end that their sin requires by God.
    So if you need help praying for deliverance and healing from your abuser(s), please feel free to use the prayer template that I wrote and Pastor Crippen shared here. I know what it’s like to suffer at the hands of abusive men and women who all claim to follow Christ. May this prayer template be a great comfort and a powerful tool in your arsenal against the attacks of the enemy and help you heal your heart from your wounds.

    • Z

      Thank you Lynn for the template for the personalized Imprecatory Prayer for God’s Justice & Vengeance to be brought down upon those who abused us. It’s true-this may be a prayer for the only justice we victims of evil in the “church” will ever see on earth.
      We KNOW the “end” of the wicked unrepentant abuser. Everlasting hell. But we can pray for earthly Justice & Wrath by God too. As you said, to bring about consequences for their constant, knowingly profaning and abusing of God’s Name. And perhaps for the consequences to be SO piercing that they bring about Holy Spirit conviction and therefore repentance and restitution in line with the levels of abuse they inflicted upon us. NOT LIKELY to happen when the hidden abuses and phony outward professions of Christianity have been a lifestyle ALL their lives. AND it has worked so well for all of them! The abusers and their “christian” enablers all claim “God’s grace” is for their intentional sins and they push our forgiveness and love and prayers for the abusers and enablers. That’s much of what got us more and more abused as the years of it went on and on unabated. “Grace”. “More grace”. “Blanket forgiveness”. “They’re ‘family’. “Honor your parents”. All twisted false teachings.
      I believe God’s grace is for US! His TRUE children! Who wrongly tried so hard to make peace with evil people who WANTED WAR! And we suffer still for doing so. So we pray they should not be made comfortable in their continued sins and damage done to us and others. We pray that in their arrogance and earthly comfort with their sins and masks, that Almighty God causes them to suffer as they’ve made us suffer. And that He exposes them on earth for what they are. Cast them down, Lord! I don’t think that’s a harsh request of the Lord from us. It’s Scriptural.
      Again, thank you, Lynn, for this template I will save and use regularly in addition to the Psalms’ Imprecatory Prayers I already pray so often. They all put the abusers in the hands of the God we cry out to day and night and trust to judge and righteously punish, as only He can, the wicked for what they have done to His children. And to bring healing and His restoration to our minds, bodies, spirits..of the lasting damage they inflicted.
      I join you, Lynn, as well as Pastor Crippen, wingingit and ALL the others who comment on this blog who’ve been through the same types of abuses whether by parents, family, spouses, church people…in praying Imprecatory Prayers to bring about God’s Justice as Scripture says He will. 🙏🏽♥️

      • Lynn

        You’re welcome Z. 🙂
        As I continue to study and unlearn all of the faulty teachings I was raised with, I knew I needed to be able to take what I was learning and make it practical for me to apply it in my life. I am a creative problem solver, meaning that I take high-level concepts and do my best to simplify them and make them easier to use and understand. I’ve been wrestling with how to model this when praying imprecatory prayers for quite a while. When I read Hezakiah’s prayer in 2 Kings 19, it gave me a structure that I have leveraged into the template you see in this post. I wanted to share it with the group because I know I’m not the only one who is healing from abusive relationships and looking for ways to properly pray about those who harmed us in the name of God.

        • Z

          Dear Lynn,
          You did a GREAT JOB in your research and application of God’s TRUE words found in Hezekiah’s Prayer as well as so many other truths. As well as untwisting of so many false teachings you (and I and so many others here) were enslaved by.
          It’s HARD getting free!! Hard, diligent work uncovering truths vs false teachings and HARD dealing with the hatred and abandonments by so many (in my case, ALL) when we expose the truth. We mostly stand alone, except for the LORD being true to His promise to never leave or forsake us and to stand with us when all others turn their backs on us. Jesus was not understating it when He said we’d be HATED for being His true followers. It’s HARD being the object of hate by so many! No roadmap for that. I know you’re willing and so am I to be hated for standing for truth and Jesus. But we aren’t ever taught how to live as a “hated person”! It’s unnatural to us. And no preacher has ever even come close to teaching truth-tellers how to live in this world as “the most hated person” by everyone-mostly professing “christians”- they ever knew. I now wear that as a badge of honor. Friendship with the world is enmity with God. But we’ve not been taught how to live as a modern day leper. It’s taken a looong time (still in process) coming to terms with this. But I wouldn’t trade my isolation and rejection by the people of this world, who put on a good act of being my “Christian family and friends” for decades, in exchange for having to live with their constant lies and false professions of following Jesus. Keeping mostly silent to keep the peace. That was torture! So no great loss after all when we think about it. We are well-rid of pretenders and fakers who don’t love us and don’t love God. They mock Him every day all day long. That’s the bigger sin! So we are in Good Company, with our God, counted as those betrayed, mocked, hated by the frauds.
          Thank you again, Lynn, for your deep, diligent work which translates into good, encouraging, enlightening words for the rest of us going through the same things as you. God bless you!

  4. Such a wonderful post because as Pastor Crippen pointed out “… it is drawn right from Scripture.”
    wingingit – I’m joining others in prayer for you and your children. I can’t imagine the pain and grief you are experiencing. “Dear Lord. Have mercy upon the innocent.”

  5. Anonymous

    I also thank you for the prayer of Hezekiah as a template, and join in prayer for the safety and quick return of wingingit’s children.

  6. Ms.E.

    Thank you for sharing, Lynn. And God bless you for your selflessness in thinking of others, that no one else may be hurt by the evil people.

    • Free

      Thank you Lynn and Pastor Crippen for sharing this exceptionally powerful message and prayer template. This one brought tears – I have literally waited years to not be shunned, condemned, belittled and accused of being the judge and jury for prayers that begged God to do what only he can do in these horribly abusive situations – and today, FINALLY the message came in.
      THANK YOU for pointing the appropriateness of the prayers, and pointing out Hezekiah’s prayer to God. Until now, I had glossed over Hezekiah’s devotion and such a powerful prayer life!
      And thank you for sharing the insight above – this is incredibly liberating to see it and know that there are others out there – and that there is so much more in being completely and deeply honest with God in our prayers.
      Lynn, my heart aches knowing that you must have seen the depths of hell in what happened at the willful hands of the abuser and his allies. Your immense pain has brought your powerful messages – and prayers. This is signed with deep appreciation for your healing presence despite the hell you were drug through. Thank you and may the Lord bless you and your children so many times beyond, just as he did with Job.

      • Lynn

        You’re welcome Free. 😊 I’m so happy to have played a small role in helping you break free feeling judged for praying imprecatory prayers against your abuser.
        I get it. I too have wrestled with praying prayers that ask God to bring destruction against those who have abused me. It feels wrong because of all of the bad teaching we have be taught in the church. I think it helped me to reframe the focus to God taking action because of their continual profaning of his name and not focus it on me and my pain.
        Yes, we can and should talk to God about all of the emotions we feel as a result of what we experience. But don’t stop there. When we look at Hezekiah’s prayer, he made the prayer about God and how the evil person threatening harm to himself and Israel was actually insulting and profaning God’s holy name. The result of that prayer was swift action to destroy Israel’s enemy and God getting the glory for it. I believe the same principle applies to us today. By praying this type of prayer against our abusers, we are asking God to act swiftly and justly so that his name gets the glory. By making it about him and his name, and not about us, we demonstrate that we trust him to act out perfect justice, to deliver the destruction promised in scripture to our abusers that they deserve as a result of their actions.

  7. Lynn

    I also want to clarify that I believe restitution is one of the signs of true, genuine repentance, hence it is included in the prayer.
    Job receives restitution – regains his property, increased livestock, servants, and is blessed with 10 more children – for the calamity he endures. Zaccheus models true repentance for us by returning what he stole with interest as a tax collector. If restitution is not included in repentance for abuse, it is not genuine repentance. It is a manipulative tactic to regain coercive control over the victim.
    Words are not enough to demonstrate repentance when dealing with abuse. Consistent action over time to do all that is necessary to restore the victim is what real repentance looks like from abusers. It’s also why I believe we don’t see real repentance in action today. Real repentance is costly to the abuser. I haven’t seen one who was willing to pay that price.

    • Jeff Crippen

      Lynn- I have never seen a “christian” reviler, abuser – repent. Never. And I have known many these 40 years as a pastor.

    • Lynn, I am so blessed by your articulation. You are speaking the hearts of many who have no friends within the so-called church.
      Thank you Pastor Crippen for providing this platform where we can feel safe to share and be encouraged.

      • Jeff Crippen

        You’re welcome healinginhim. One of the reasons we can keep this platform safe is that we moderate comments before they are published. You should see some of the trash that is thrown at us on occasion. It has reduced over time because these evil types figure out that we aren’t going to publish their tirades. Duh? Should be a no-brainer, right? I got one such comment submitted the other day by a ranting lady who decided we were wicked false teachers for telling people they can divorce for abuse. On and on she went about how we are twisting the scriptures and she did so in a really mean and mocking tone. Very self-righteous. Well, there is a bin here on WordPress blogs called “Trash.” So off to the trash she went!! I mean, who needs to hear that garbage?

        • Sue

          Dear Pastor Crippen and Friends, the real eye-opener came, when hearing a preacher, who had noticed the no-divorce-period types, are usually short on mercy in other areas as well.

  8. Free

    Lynn – this has been a very heart-touching lesson, message and comfort while in trial that speaks in your follow-on comments. It’s as if you read my (and others!) mind.
    The point of restitution will not voluntarily come from the abusers, the amount would be staggering and that would also publicly acknowledge they were so very wrong in what they knowingly did to their target.
    Pastor Crippen – absolutely believe you have never seen a repentant “Christian” abuser (it’s a contradiction even putting those two words together!) – they aren’t, so they won’t be. I have seen the drama fest and public “show off” apologies to make themselves look better to everyone but their victim(s) – they’re not genuine and absolutely do not include voluntary and full restitution.
    Thank you both again for this message.

    • Lynn

      That’s the reason restitution is one of my measures of how genuine the repentance is, both to myself personally and when I see abuse in the church exposed online. It’s really hard to fake restitution. Restitution hits at the heart of the matter because abusers love self and money more than anything else. Genuine repentance is costly, which is why abusers won’t voluntarily pay it. If restitution isn’t voluntary, it isn’t evidence of genuine repentance.
      While I haven’t ever seen an abuser genuinely repent, in the prayer I am giving space that if God does move on the heart of the abuser, this is how I would know they are sincere. Restitution is the primary evidence that I require to be willing to consider that my abusers’ repentance is genuine. It would not result in reconciliation of the relationship or me lifting my no contact policy, but would cause me to change my prayers for them to be not focused on imprecation, instead on the sanctification of their souls.
      Do I believe that they will repent? No. History and research tells me they will not change for the better. They will get worse with age. But I leave them in the hands of God to do with as he pleases. My desire with this imprecatory prayer is that God gets the glory His name deserves, the abusers get the justice their actions require, and I continue to break free and heal from all of the past abuse that was piled up on me for nearly 4 decades, and that the rest of you experience the same in your own walk with Christ.
      We are at war. It’s time to start using all of the weapons God’s given to us – including imprecatory prayer – more effectively and strategically and watch to see how God moves to defend his name, bring himself glory, and care for his people.

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