Unmasking the Domestic Abuser in the Church

Help from Job – Will we Take the Good but not the Bad?

Job 2:10b Shall we receive good from God, and shall we not receive evil?” In all this Job did not sin with his lips.

When the Lord tested Job, and it was a severe test as you know, his wife faltered and essentially told him to give up. In response, he recalled all the very good things the Lord had given them before and acknowledged the Lord’s right to withdraw them.

Job’s words reminded me of a very common and repeated scenario I have experienced. Emphasis on “repeated.” It is a characteristic of the wicked, especially of RASN’s. It goes like this: Those the RASN targets are so often very longsuffering and do all kinds of good things for their persecutor (not fully realizing just what kind of person they are up against). They are regularly giving and giving and giving good things to the oppressor, sensing (in a kind of subconscious way) that they can win the favor of the wicked one if they just continue to do nice things.

I say “subconscious” because I think what happens is that we somehow sense that there is this kind of tension in the relationship which must be fed or it will turn on us. I bet you know what I mean. Here you are almost daily giving and giving and giving and getting nothing good in return. But you just keep on giving. Why? Because your relationship is entirely one-sided. You give, they take.

Now, let’s come to a crucial and revealing point in all this. As you awaken to what is really going on and you begin to learn the nature of the RASN, you begin to voice truth. You point out the selfishness, the coldness, the void of empathy. And when you do, what happens? Does the RASN remember all of the kindness you have shown them? Is he saddened that he/she has been so selfish and unkind? You know the answer – NO! Most certainly, NO! It is as if all those many, many kind gifts and acts never even took place. They are completely disregarded. The RASN curses you for the admonition and wipes the slate entirely of the whole history of good that you have shown them.

RASNs then are guilty of the very sin which Job rejected. They accept and take the good, but no one better criticize, admonish, correct, or communicate truth to them about their sin. Or else.

If these things resonate with you, if you are in a relationship in which the giving is all on your part, if you are under a daily urging to give and give and give, ask yourself, “why?” Because surely something is very wrong.


Say it: There IS a Reward for the Righteous


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  1. JKR

    As usual, this is such an EXCELLENT post that really gets to the heart of the matter.

    For years, I was the husband that came up with creative and fun and meaningful and unique gifts for my wife.

    It was almost like a game. “Ok, how can I do something EVEN BETTER than the last gift I gave to her?” That was always my mindset.

    I didn’t realize until just a few months ago in Therapy that I was doing all that hoping to either model for my RASN what I needed and wanted from her just once or doing it thinking that the next “over the top” gift I gave her will be the one to FINALLY fix her and turn her heart and mind toward me so that her actions matched her words.

    However, after awhile, I started to notice that she never put the same kind of effort or thought into things for me. NEVER. Seriously, I’d be hard pressed to tell you right now what the most “meaningful” or “personal” gift was that she ever gave me during our 23+ years togetger except for our 3 kids!

    I excused that for years even though her primary Love Language was “Receiving Gifts” and so giving gifts to others like her dear husband should have come naturally to her. Instead, I was lucky if I got a card. If I did get a gift, it was often something that made absolutely no sense or something I would never get for myself. Talk about feeling like your own wife doesn’t really know you at all like you think she does!

    Then, 9 months ago, after planning an entire day of events and a dinner for her birthday and spending hundreds of dollars to treat her and her family and friends too, the next day she did/said something that was so abusive (something I thought would never be said by her again after it happened in 2018 and we went to Marriage Counseling because of it).

    The result? As the end of this post pointed out, “They accept and take the good, but no one better criticize, admonish, correct, or communicate truth to them about their sin. Or else.” Sadly, that’s incredibly true. I gently pointed out her sins and how they hurt me, she disagreed, things snowballed from there, and now we’re getting divorced almost 10 months later.

    Nothing but 100% PURE BIBLICAL TRUTH in today’s entry. Thanks for writing it!

    Grace & Peace,

  2. Dee

    Pastor Crippen, I only wish I could convey all that these RASNs do as clearly as you do.. I found myself answering the questions you posed in the exact wording you use in your answers before I even read your answers! At that, I had to laugh uproariously. I have run the gamut with these charlatans. After vast experience,, I saw the last one coming – agenda & all. She is an attorney in the same condo bldg I live in. Knowing I’m a devout Christian, she refused to accept ‘no’ for an answer to a lesbian relationship with her. She is married to one of my doctors, no less. Not only has she smeared my name so badly that no one will associate with me any longer, & one man tried to attack me as I simply walked out of the elevator into our lobby, but another man saw it & stepped between us. It gets worse, though. She then had my name turned into the government watch list which is for terrorists, pedophiles, etc. Now I am monitored 24/7. The government makes sure the businesses I patronize know who ,according to them, I am. It is as though my life of freedom is over . Nearly everyone treats you as though they believe you really are a criminal. I can’t even get physical therapy for my leg, which is in severe pain, so now I have a very noticeable limp when I walk. Please keep getting the word out on how these people live to destroy others. Your support means everything to us who go through this nonsense. I went no contact in Sept, 2019. She just can’t stop her own behavior. Everyone believes her & helps enable her. I never realized how pitifully selfish human behavior could become. God bless you for being there for us and for your fine ministry to the genuinely hurting that no one else will even go near.

  3. Anne

    My abuser did exactly as described above. He also took every opportunity to steal away the good I did for him or others and credit it to himself.

    I thought after escaping all those years of abuse I could finally find peace. I soon found myself dealing with it again at my workplace. I was falling into the old pattern of repeatedly trying to win a person over with all kinds of acts of kindness, who daily makes fun of me, gives me work they don’t want to do, or is just cruel. They make small talk, just to eventually stick their knife in you. My boss does nothing, because this person has skills and connections that he values way more than what my position is; talk about horrible “leadership.” Tells me to, “just ignore that person”–how convenient for him not holding that abuser responsible; he’s selfish and a coward. He calls himself a Christian and so does she. UGH!

    Remember how Lucy was always promising Charlie Brown she would hold the football securely for him to kick, only to pull it out from under him sending him crashing to the ground, every single time?! That’s what life is like with an abuser–married or working with one. Now when I’m in a room with this person, under my breath I remind myself: “Don’t play with Lucy.”


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