Unmasking the Domestic Abuser in the Church

If We Confess Our Sins…

1Jn 1:8-10 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. (9) If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (10) If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

It is always good to first apply Scripture to ourselves – get the log out before looking at someone else’s “speck.” We all MUST be born again. Christ is our only hope and, as I have emphasized in the past, being a victim of evil does not ensure that we ourselves are born again. This is that old danger of getting bogged down in victimhood and somehow thinking that because we have been targets of evil, God is somehow obligated to accept us and show us special favor.

These truths are not meant to discourage people who are oppressed by the wicked, but to show that – to say it again – Christ is our only hope and if we do not belong to Him, our condition is hopeless no matter how much we learn about the tactics of abuse or how diligently we work to expose it and get free of it. Above all things, it is my earnest desire to point people to Christ and not to fall into the pit of teaching about abusers, abuser’s mentality and tactics, only to stop there and, as it were, help people kick the demon out, only to have an empty heart into which the demon returns in seven-fold power.

Therefore, first we must examine ourselves and confess our own sin, and be certain that we are not sliding into a mode of thought in which we regard ourselves as having no sin – because after all, we might think – WE are the victims here. Yes, you have been or perhaps still are the target of evil. But do YOU know Christ? Because – and mark this down carefully – Christ is your only real Rescuer. Not the courts. Not ministries that seek to expose the wicked. Not even getting physically free of your abuser. It is only to Christ that we can pray. He is the only One who can safeguard our soul. He is the only One who can one day deliver perfect justice and full vindication. He is the only One who is absolutely trustworthy and who loves with perfect love all who turn to Him.

When WE know Christ, then we are in a position to know (grow wise in regard to) evil. And one of the consistent traits of the wicked is that they refuse to confess their sin. You have experienced this over and over I am sure. It is never their fault. They have not been the wrongdoer. They blame. They accuse. It is always you, you, you. John says that a person like this is a liar and that their entire life is a lie.

This is the fundamental sign of a narcissist, or a sociopath. You’ve seen it. The thing is soooo consistent that it actually sneaks up on you. It’s always your fault, and you grow accustomed to wearing the blame. The wicked one says he has no sin, but he lies. There is no truth in him. In fact, basically just like his father the devil, if his lips are moving he is lying. And worse, such a person makes God a liar. Because God says we DO have sin – the wicked say God is wrong. Their condemnation is just.


Forgetting and Pressing On


A Spoonful of Sugar Makes…for Confusion


  1. Jennie

    I have question. It occurred to me today that I had confessed a sin to God years ago, but had not ever confessed it to the one I sinned against: my abuser ex husband. The sin was turning away and pretending not to see when he fell while roller-skating and seemed at least slightly injured. We were at the rink with others from our homeschool co-op. I was suffering greatly from him and left a few month’s later and thought of him as an evil person. Some time later I realized that I was treating him as less than human, which is what evil people do. I was being like him. I was devastated and so disappointed in myself. I confessed my sin to God. I don’t remember if I thought of telling my husband at the time. I’m wondering, should I confess this to him?

    • Jennie- your humility is genuine and admirable. But confessing your conviction of sin to God is enough. It in fact would be a mistake to confess to your ex abuser.

      Why? Because abusers will only use such a confession as ammunition against you. They will use it to shame and accuse you – “See! I was right about you all along!”

      They will never receive your apology with kindness nor will it ever motivate them to confess their own evils. Your words will only be used against you.


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