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In the church I was in growing up it wasn’t out right taught but the message was clear that if you didn’t go to an Independent Fundamental Baptist Denomination you were not only decieved and sinnful, but also your salvation was questionable.The message was that the Independent Fundamental Baptist Denomination had the monopoly on the gospel message and the only way to be truly saved was to get saved from the message that the Independent Fundamental Baptist Denomination brings.In my church, If someone wasn’t living up to the standards set forth by the Independent Fundamental Baptist Denomination they were considered rebellious and we were not to have any associations with them.One of the rules was that dying one’s hair is considered worldly and therefore a sin.They communicate the Lord as a cosmic dictator or harsh taskmaster, eagerly waiting for you to make a mistake so that he can “chasten” you.
Spiritual abuse is also the misuse of a position of power, leadership, or influence to further the selfish interests of someone other than the individual who needs help.
Any form of questioning is considered an act of rebellion and the person is chastised for question the authority of the leaders.
This “guilt trip” suppresses the person normal God given intuition that something doesn’t quite feel right about the church.
‘Denominationalism’ and ‘traditionalism’ find their way into the teachings and become enmeshed so that no one can tell where Christianity begins and the traditions end.
describe spiritual abuse well when he said: “It’s possible to become so determined to defend a spiritual place of authority, a doctrine or a way of doing things that you wound and abuse anyone who questions, or disagrees, or doesn’t ‘behave’ spiritually the way you want them to.
Victims are often depressed about their inability to live up to those rules and standards, worried that they aren’t pleasing the Lord, and frustrated that they keep sinning.