Unmasking the Domestic Abuser in the Church

Know the House by its Fruits

Pro 3:33 The LORD’s curse is on the house of the wicked, but he blesses the dwelling of the righteous.

Zec 5:1-4 Again I lifted my eyes and saw, and behold, a flying scroll! (2) And he said to me, “What do you see?” I answered, “I see a flying scroll. Its length is twenty cubits, and its width ten cubits.” (3) Then he said to me, “This is the curse that goes out over the face of the whole land. For everyone who steals shall be cleaned out according to what is on one side, and everyone who swears falsely shall be cleaned out according to what is on the other side. (4) I will send it out, declares the LORD of hosts, and it shall enter the house of the thief, and the house of him who swears falsely by my name. And it shall remain in his house and consume it, both timber and stones.”

We know that a Godly parent can have a prodigal child. We see this in the parable by that title – The Prodigal.

But what I want to address here is a pattern which I have seen repeatedly over the years. A pattern which the Scriptures above, and others, declare. It is this: When the children in a home, one after another, embrace the world and choose to walk in sin rather than following Christ, it reveals that the Spirit of the Lord has left that home. And the cause is to be found in the sin of one or both parents.

Now, I want to be very careful in handling this subject because I do not want to lay any false guilt upon a godly parent. There are exceptions. For instance, I know a man who was not born again until mid-life. Prior to that as he raised his children, he walked in sin. Not surprisingly, his children followed the world. Now however, he loves the Lord and does all he can to point his children to Christ. And I know there are other exceptions – the very common example of one spouse being a Christian while the other is a wicked abuser.

But I am speaking here of a too common pattern in which both parents are pretending to be Christians – perhaps that pretending is even quite convincing – but over the years you see the children rejecting Christ (or carrying on the hypocritical disguise of pretending religion) and following the world. When the children were small, it was much easier for the parents to put on an appearance of godliness while, in fact, denying the power of Christ.

This dynamic causes great confusion to us. Here we see what we thought was a fine Christian family, but as the years pass and the children grow up, the fruit is bad. We can remain blind to what this reveals – after all, it is always very hard to come to the realization that the whole house is built on the sand of false faith.

Pharisees beget Pharisees. Worldlings birth worldlings. The Spirit of the Lord is not present in such a home. Rather, as Zechariah’s flying scroll announces, the Lord’s curse is upon such a home. The fruit is bad because the root is bad. So let’s not be deceived. Something is terribly amiss with a place which claims to be the home of saints and yet the fruit coming out of that home is consistently rotten. A bad tree does not produce good fruit.

Those of you who are or have been married to a wicked spouse and you had had children in that marriage, have certainly seen and had to battle with the influence of an evil father or mother upon the children. And there are still more of you who are the children of an evil house – yet you have been rescued and saved by the Lord. These exceptions are the pure mercy of Christ, that we smoking brands were plucked from the fire.

But, let me emphasize this again, the pattern I am speaking of here is that of the deception which is carried out so often in churches. Namely, this:

2Ti 3:5 having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people.

Eze 33:31-32 And they come to you as people come, and they sit before you as my people, and they hear what you say but they will not do it; for with lustful talk in their mouths they act; their heart is set on their gain. (32) And behold, you are to them like one who sings lustful songs with a beautiful voice and plays well on an instrument, for they hear what you say, but they will not do it.

The flying scroll of the curse of the Lord is upon such a house. The rottenness in the foundations of such a place will inevitably be revealed as the years go by.


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1 Comment

  1. Be the new growth

    Thank you for this. This was painful to read -yet it hits the truth head on! So very true – from the home, to the church, to the workplace and the community you live in – it’s all the same truth of the tree, the fruit – and all that falls in-between.

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