House Church Talk - spiritual abuse

jim sutton goodword at
Mon Aug 9 08:05:55 EDT 2004

Rick Johnson wrote:
> DanG,
> This is not the only group I have met which practices this type of
> control.
> The "Bride of Christ" church in Las Vegas in the late 70s and early 80s
> also required this.
> RJ

(Sorry for the double posting above, a glitch kept my posts from arriving for 
a day or two.)

I've also seen some of the "Jesus People" groups go the way you're talking 
about,Rick.  At least one group started out very well, but fell into this 
pattern, and the problem became worse yet when the elders went truly bad, 
falling back into drug use and sexual uncleanness.

I also was very close to a group headed in part by Derek Prince, mentioned 
already here by Claire, or someone else.  It was a group called the Glory Barn 
in northern Indiana.  They even had infants and mothers die, as I remember, 
because they told them not to accept medical help at birth.

And where I live now the Mormons, a very large and very real cult, are big and 
very visible and very powerful.  They're in hot compettion here with the 
Jehovah's Witnesses, who "own" the downtown area -- in more ways than one.

But I still do not believe that attacking Joseph Smith (which is easy) or 
Derek Prince, or a body of weird and stupid teaching is the answer.

No, I believe that the true gospel message and the true teaching of the 
Scriptures is the answer.  Reach people for Jesus Christ, point everyone to 
Him.  Make Him the center of our own personal  (and group) worship and 
service, and make it clear that He is the true center of every true believer.

We must touch the area outside our own groups, touch society, touch the other 
believers with our lives, our testimony, our message.

If a soul is not anchored truly in Jesus Christ, then they will simply wander 
about from human leader to human leader -- or leaders.  The Jesus People that 
I mentioned above had plurality of elders, but the members still had been 
taught to follow the human leadership instead of Christ Himself.

The real church is not about people who come together to get right with God 
(or to keep right).  It is about believers who gather together to share with 
each other what they already have in Jesus Christ -- every day.

Any human soul not truly anchored in Jesus Christ is easy prey for a wolf, a 
lion, or any other predator.  And when they're not being torn by their 
leaders, they will turn and tear at each other.  Why?  Because they're not 

Jesus said that His sheep will hear His voice -- and another they will not 


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