The Bible on Abuse

My previous post covered sexual abuse which went over Ephesians 5:1-21. This precedes the verses on how family members should relate to each other. This was on purpose. But, what about emotional, verbal, and physical abuse? Let’s examine the verses before chapter 5 and see what Paul says.

Ephesians 4

I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, 2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, 3 eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

Abuse, in any of its forms is the total opposite of this. Compared to verse 2: abuse is prideful, harsh, demanding, tearing apart with one another in hatred, eager to destroy the unity of the Spirit by breaking relationships through deceit. 

 4 There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. 7 But grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift.

Abusers who call themselves Christians lack the understanding of these verses. We are all one body and one Spirit. We have one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. This means, mistreating anyone who is in the faith is mistreating yourself. 

This is why the narcissist should take head of the golden rule. By treating others as he or she wishes to be treated, they are destroying selfishness and willing to give to others as they would want others to give to them.

Abuse and narcissism go hand in hand. If they don’t get what they want, they beat out of you verbally, emotionally, or literally. 

They use totalitarian rule and place themselves in the place of Christ, and so again, it is a polar opposite of verses 5-6, a twisted form and worship of something very evil. The abuser says: “I’m the Lord, only have faith in me, be baptized, laying down in the water your worth of self and rising up as a creature designed to only satisfy my wants. I am God and father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.”

Only God is God. No human can take that place. Only He is patient enough, loving enough, enduring enough, caring enough, and worthy enough to receive our praise. Victims of abuse are forced into a demented form worship. They give in to whatever the abuser asks, even if that asking is against the one true God. 

Victims don’t want this now. Only through totalitarian rule has this taken place. They need to be freed! It is the abuser who should be dealt with for they, at their very core, are making themselves out to be God.

Do you suppose that an abuser such as this has any place in heaven? Does God allow other gods before Him?

We have a calling, anyone not of that calling is hell bound.

 4 There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.

We must turn over ourselves to the One who is Lord of all. Flee abuse and its many forms knowing that Jesus would never abuse you or mistreat you in that way. 

8 Therefore it says,

“When he ascended on high he led a host of captives,
    and he gave gifts to men.”

9 (In saying, “He ascended,” what does it mean but that he had also descended into the lower regions, the earth? 10 He who descended is the one who also ascended far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things.)

Jesus is the one who has the rightful place of King of kings. He is the one who ascended. He is the one who gives us gifts.

11 And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, 12 to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, 13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, 

God gives us gifts that edify the body. It is to help us in these dark times on earth so that we might unite with Christ and act as He does, edifying other around us. As Christ loves us so we must love others. Christ selflessness leads to our own selflessness.

Abusers groom their victims with gifts and trinkets, complimenting them with a false kindness. They tell the victim how awesome they are and then beat them with dread in the very sentence. The aim of this grooming is to sweeten the victim’s heart so that it longs to please the abuser. “Maybe if I can do what they want, they will be proud of me.” But any kindness given is always a twisted thing. 

This eventually hardens the victim’s heart. Any act of genuine kindness from others is scrutinized. The victim is waiting for the hammer to drop. For, every complement eventually ends in abuse.

14 so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes.

Do not listen to their empty words, victim. Be comforted in the knowledge that your abusers aren’t God, not even close to a representation of God. They do not act as Christ does. By human cunning and craftiness, abusers claim many things. By deceitful schemes they prey on their victims. And if they are a wolf in sheep’s clothing, a so-called Christian, then they are very much taking the Lord’s name in vain. Abusers can’t ever claim to be godly.

15 Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, 16 from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.

True Christians are truthful in their love. Love means, you don’t always get what you want. Abusers don’t even understand or live this concept out. They only take and take some more. Any giving, is to sweeten a victim up so the abuser can eventually take again.

17 Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds. 18 They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. 19 They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity. 20 But that is not the way you learned Christ!— 21 assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, 

We are to be distinct and holy in our actions, not like those who are unsaved, for we are no longer gentiles, therefore we must walk in the ways of Christ. 

22 to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, 23 and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, 24 and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.

Our old life was corrupt through deceitful desires. The wantings of our flesh deceived us into sin. What we crave and long for is not of God. Paul is asking us to put these away and to put on the mantle and the actions of Christ. Do what Jesus did.

25 Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.

We contrast from the darkness of the world. Abuse is never truthful. It is built around lies. Why does it happen? Enter any excuse or empty words that you can… they are lies. You can’t hit or hurt a person and then blame it on that person.

26 Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27 and give no opportunity to the devil.

This is the main verse against abuse of any kind. Anger opens the opportunity for abusive sin to flourish. A true christian does not give into it, or if they do, they quickly turn away from it in repentance.

 28 Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.

I’ve covered this before, but abuse is a form of covetousness. The abuser wants and so they take it. If it is not given, they beat it out of the victim.

29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.

Don’t verbally abuse.

30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. 32 Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

Abusers demand forgiveness, but they never give true forgiveness themselves… unless they want something, they’ll ask for forgiveness all over the place just get something in return. But they don’t forgive. In fact, they use any slight and hold it against their victims. Why? To take and steal more from the victim of course.

So, should a victim forgive your abusers? Forgive them yes… forgive them and then flee.

In prayer and preparation flee from the false gods that they pretend to be. Worship the One True God who is kind and loving. Put nothing else ahead of God and worship Him only, all the days of your life. 

For the victim, the 23rd Psalms is for you. This is the God you should worship and be baptized to.

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2     He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.

3     He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
    for his name’s sake.

4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
    I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
    your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.

5 You prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.

6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
    all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
    forever.

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