The Essential Nature of an Abuser – Devoid of Love

You never loved me. You only wanted to possess me. Your curse is that you cannot love.

I came across this quote in, of all places, a dark comedy movie. It jumped out at me as true truth in regard to the people we class as sociopaths and it is certainly an excellent description of a domestic abuser as we define them here. Power. Control. Possession. Devoid of love.

Understanding this is key to getting free of the confusing fog abusers cast and to getting actually free of them.

The abusers I have had personal experience with have for the most part been church members in churches I have pastored. Professing Christians, yet still children of the devil. The most pious saints, they would have you believe. And it took a long, long time for me to realize that ALL the show of religion they put on was absolutely false. That they never loved me, they only wanted to own and control me for their own evil designs. That they were people who knew nothing of love and were in their very being incapable of knowing or giving love.

Oh they can mimic these things, and often do so very, very convincingly as we all have seen. But when a person who is incapable of love seems to be exercising love, it only seems that they are. In fact they are mimics. They see other people loving one another and then they outwardly mimic that love. But it isn’t love at all. Your abuser has never loved you. In fact, he or she has never loved anyone.

Their curse, justly deserved, is that they cannot and they will not, love.

They Never Admit Wrong: A Sure Sign of an Unsafe (and Unsaved) Person

1Jn 1:10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

Mr. Decker: “Captain, shouldn’t we take every possible precaution?”

Captain Kirk: “Mr. Decker, I will not provoke an attack.  If that order isn’t clear enough for you….”

Mr. Decker: “Captain, as your executive officer it is my duty to point out alternatives.”

Captain Kirk: “Yes it is.  I stand corrected.”

“Yes, it is.  I stand corrected.”  Words you will never hear from an abuser.

Pastor Larry Dean, a reader of this blog, loves to talk about repentance. He would tell you that it is sorely lacking not only in the world today, but in the church. And yet without repentance there can be no forgiveness of sin. A gospel with no call to repentance is no gospel at all.

Continue reading “They Never Admit Wrong: A Sure Sign of an Unsafe (and Unsaved) Person”

How Academia in Religion Can Enable and Protect Abusers

Today I received the following announcement from the Greystone Theological Institute, announcing another presentation in their Postgraduate Seminar Series. Let me say plainly up front that my purpose here is not to slam Greystone or to try to say that a seminar like this has no value at all. That is not my purpose. You can read the following quote from the email they sent me, and then I will tell you what my point here is.  As you can guess, it has to do with abusers in the church:

On 23 October, at 10 AM (EST), Greystone is pleased to host an online-only presentation by Dr Jake Griesel (Cambridge) as part of the Greystone Online Postgraduate Seminar Series. Dr Griesel will present on “Reformed Orthodoxy in the Church of England, 1660-c. 1730.” Here is a summary of his forthcoming presentation:

“The conventional historiography has long depicted the post-Restoration Church of England as having shed itself of its earlier Reformed heritage. Historians have supposed that, after the Great Ejection of 1662, Reformed orthodoxy in England was almost entirely restricted to dissenters, whereas Arminianism became overwhelmingly dominant in the established Church before being challenged by the Calvinistic wing of the evangelical revivals of the 1730s and 40s. This presentation will challenge the foregoing narrative by considering the abiding strength of Reformed orthodoxy within the established Church between the Restoration (1660) and the dawn of the evangelical revivals (c. 1730). Particular attention will be given to how the Church’s Thirty-nine Articles and Homilies functioned as confessional authorities as post-Restoration Reformed conformists strove to preserve Reformed orthodoxy against Arminianism as the official orthodoxy of the established Church.”

The subject of Dr. Griesel’s presentation will no doubt be interesting to many. The study of church history is important and can have great value. I would probably enjoy hearing it myself.

But….

Continue reading “How Academia in Religion Can Enable and Protect Abusers”

“You Need to Forgive Him/Her” – Really?

Mat 5:6-12  “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.  (7)  “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.  (8)  “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.  (9)  “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.  (10)  “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  (11)  “Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.  (12)  Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Here, the Lord Jesus gives us a description of those who are blessed. Those who are truly His people and who have great reward in heaven. They are peacemakers and they are merciful. But they also hunger and thirst for righteousness. When they strive for peace and when they show mercy, their actions do not contradict their desire for what is right. In fact, they are courageous in their stance for righteousness. So much so that they are persecuted by the wicked.

Now, with that background, what do you think of someone who comes up to you and says:

You need to forgive Joe or Sally or….whoever

I have heard this line many times, and no doubt so have most all of you. And I want to tell you – every single time I have heard it from someone, that person has turned out to be either an exceedingly naive person ignorant of the real truths of Scripture, or an out and out wicked reviler parading as a Christian. Every time. Without fail.

Continue reading ““You Need to Forgive Him/Her” – Really?”

The Double Standard of Evil

Rom 2:1-3  Therefore you have no excuse, O man, every one of you who judges. For in passing judgment on another you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, practice the very same things.  (2)  We know that the judgment of God rightly falls on those who practice such things.  (3)  Do you suppose, O man—you who judge those who practice such things and yet do them yourself—that you will escape the judgment of God?

If you have had your eyes opened to the nature and tactics of evil such as that seen in domestic abusers, you know that an almost universal characteristic of these children of the devil is the double standard. That is exactly what the Apostle Paul is confronting enemies of the gospel with in this passage. They condemn others but practice the very same things themselves.

Continue reading “The Double Standard of Evil”

The Chameleon Nature of Evil or, “Where’s Waldo?”

2Co 11:13-15 For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. (14) And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. (15) So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds.

Most of you know that the sin of abuse hides. It hides in plain sight by donning a facade, a disguise, a costume of righteousness. The abuser is a chameleon, changing his outward appearance as necessary to not only blend into the current surroundings, but to even stand out a bit as an eminent example of whatever society (such as a local church) he happens to be in. I think there are some super-hero villain types in recent movies who can change their form at will?

Evil hides in plain sight. It puts on camo paint and blends, so that it looks like the “good” around it. What better vantage point to strike from? You never see it coming. Hidden in disguise it can work its harm for years, picking us off one by one. I think of the rabbits in Watership Down, willing to be domesticated and gain the comforts of it all — though it did seem that some of their neighbors mysteriously kept disappearing. Oh well.

Continue reading “The Chameleon Nature of Evil or, “Where’s Waldo?””

Where Should we Expect to Find the Enemy?

Jude 1:4  For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.

As a Christian, where has the major portion of suffering and persecution come at you? What has been its most typical source? We are usually taught that we should be looking for attacks from the world, and certainly that is one common base of the enemy. The world, the flesh, and the devil, you know.

But I want to show you from my own experience and from Scripture that the most typical locale for the enemies of Christ to attack from is not “out there.” Rather, it is within the walls of the visible, local church.

Continue reading “Where Should we Expect to Find the Enemy?”