A Cry For Justice

Awakening the Evangelical Church to Domestic Violence and Abuse in its Midst

Do not Pity the Wicked: Abusers Use Pity as a Snare

UPDATE Sept 2021: I have come to believe that Jeff Crippen does not practise what he preaches. He vilely persecuted an abuse victim and spiritually abused many other people in the Tillamook congregation. Go here to read the evidence. Jeff has not gone to the people that he spiritually and emotionally abused. He has not apologised to them, let alone asked for their forgiveness.


[August 17, 2022: There have been some changes made to this post. For more information, read the Editors’ notes at the bottom of the post. Editors.]

“But if anyone hates his neighbor and lies in wait for him and attacks him and strikes him fatally so that he dies, and he flees into one of these cities, then the elders of his city shall send and take him from there, and hand him over to the avenger of blood, so that he may die. Your eye shall not pity him, but you shall purge the guilt of innocent blood from Israel, so that it may be well with you.  (Deuteronomy 19:11-13  ESV)

Let me apply this Scripture by paraphrasing it a bit:

If anyone hates his wife and sets traps for her and attacks her and strikes her so that her health is ruined and over time she sees herself dying, and he runs off to another church, the Elders of his first church shall contact the Elders of the church to which he has fled and he shall be put out of both churches, handed over to the Lord for the destruction of his flesh. You shall not pity him, but you shall purge your church of him, lest your entire church share in the guilt of innocent blood, so that the Lord will bless you and it might be well with you.

You shall not pity him! To pity him is to keep him in your midst, and in doing so everyone in that church stands guilty before the Lord of the wicked man’s evil! How many churches today are guilty then before the Lord? How many have innocent blood on their hands because they are harboring and enabling the wicked?

You shall not pity him! Abusers use pity. They use pity to manipulate us. Tricking us into pitying them is one of the tactics they use to keep up their disguise. How many of our readers have told us this? Many! “He pointed a gun at me. He abused me for years and years. But he went to church every Sunday and wept and wailed and prayed and raised his hands up in ‘worship’ and everyone thought he was such a godly man. Then, when I left him, he wept and wailed and raised his hands some more, and the people all came over to him in his pew and put their hands on the poor, poor godly man and prayed for him as he ‘suffered’ the grief of having lost his beloved, yet heartless wife.” The thing is sickening and putrid, but it happens over and over again.

You shall not pity him! Stop it! Stop pitying the wicked. He wants you to pity him. He knows that pity is one of his most powerful means of winning you as his ally and turning you against his victim. If you pity him, you will enable him. You will be siding with him, and you will be guilty of innocent blood before God!

The 69th Psalm is Messianic. These words are a prophecy of the Lord Jesus Christ suffering on the cross. But they also speak of the abuse victim, describing her painful plight very accurately:

Reproaches have broken my heart, so that I am in despair. I looked for pity, but there was none, and for comforters, but I found none.  (Psalm 69:20  ESV)

Understand the irony? The one we should pity, finds no pity. The one the Lord commands us not to pity, is pitied. Pity the righteous and the Lord will bless you. Pity the unrighteous and He will be against you.

Most local churches stand under divine indictment today. They pity the wicked man, and they harden themselves against the righteous who are oppressed by the wicked. This means necessarily that most churches do not have the Lord’s blessing upon them. Did you hear that? Most local churches do not have the Lord’s blessing upon them, because they pity the wicked.

We do have One however, who hears our cry. The One who has no pity for the wicked, has treasures of pity for the righteous:

May all kings fall down before him, all nations serve him! For he delivers the needy when he calls, the poor and him who has no helper. He has pity on the weak and the needy, and saves the lives of the needy. From oppression and violence he redeems their life, and precious is their blood in his sight.  (Psalm 72:11-14  ESV)

[August 17, 2022: Editors’ notes:

—For some comments made prior to August 17, 2022 that quoted from the post, the text in the comment that was quoted from the post might no longer be an exact match.
—For some comments made prior to August 17, 2022 that quoted from the post, the text in the comment that was quoted from the post might no longer be found in the post.
If you would like to compare the text in the comments made prior to August 17, 2022 that quoted from the post to the post as it is now (August 17, 2022), click here [Internet Archive link] for the most recent Internet Archive copy of the post.]


  1. Jersey Girl

    Once again – the proverbial fresh air! I can breathe better now! Thank you, Pastor Jeff. I am more and more seeing this as a watershed issue in the church and you are crystalizing that with a post like this. Thank you, Lord Jesus!

  2. IamMyBeloved's

    Yes, yes, yes! Excellent post. Pity is such a huge issue in abuse. It seems that most churches desire to “help” the abuser and fall into this mindset of pitying him instead. Pity is not help, as you say. Is it any wonder that victims are left confused and feeling rejected by their church as they aid the abuser and feel sorry for him? Of course we who are true Christians and have biblical accuracy on this issue will be confused, because it is leveling evil and righteousness, which ought never to occur. It is deception and deception always leaves true believers feeling confused.

    We often see how people need to repent — but the truth is that these churches need to repent of their wickedness in enabling, protecting, siding with and pitying abusers and blaming the victims, and begin to show fruit in keeping with true repentance.

  3. Joy

    Mine seeks pity from his own family. They for the most part have understood what he has done as wrong, but a recent visit that he had with them allowed him to seek pity during the holidays. Fortunately, my church “got it” and brought him before the Elders and he ran. I don’t believe he has gone to another church.

  4. Babylove

    Mine sought and got pity from everyone and I mean everyone, he was so adept at manipulation and making me look like a crazy, gold-digging liar.

  5. A Covert Narcissist's Wife

    This is so true. My husband and his family are all abusers and use this tactic often. In their opinion I deserve their abuse. The truth of the abuse terrifies them and they look for any reason to discredit me and my son. We are the victims of the abuse but how skilled they are at twisting the truth.

  6. a prodigal daughter returns

    Once you come out of the fog and realize you are really with a serial abuser that isn’t going to change, that you are likely to die if you don’t get out and have the courage to leave, it is astonishing to face harsh judgement for doing so. I remained silent about my own abuse for decades and when I started to speak I found both obvious and subtle sanctions for truth-telling. A Scripture that was powerful in my devotions this morning about this topic, is Proverbs 17:15:

    (15) He who justifies the wicked and he who condemns the righteous are both an abomination [exceedingly disgusting and hateful] to the Lord. [AMPC]

    An abomination are those that heap shame on victims for trying to walk in righteousness by calling evil what it is. Is it wrong to hate that thing which God hates? Is it wrong to call out oppression when Jesus claimed of Himself that he came to set the captive free and announce deliverance for the oppressed. And yet, those that follow His footsteps make themselves a target of abuse enablers that subvert the Gospel and a perverted dogma throw “don’t judge” at advocates. In fact, the only righteous thing to do is discern and call to account.

  7. standsfortruth

    Most local churches stand under divine indictment today. They pity the wicked man, and they harden themselves against the righteous who are oppressed by the wicked. This means necessarily that most churches do not have the Lord’s blessing upon them. Did you hear that? Most local churches do not have the Lord’s blessing upon them, because they pity the wicked.

    Thank you, Jeff, for this accurate portrayal of the churches incriminating position in supporting evil abusers at the expense of cutting off the righteous.

    May they repent of their pride, blindness, and calloused responses to the victims, and start to hear what the Spirit is saying to the churches.

  8. StandsWithAFist

    Martha Stout says in “The Sociopath Next Door” that the easiest way to discern sociopathic behavior is the “pity party”.

    The person who says in word or deed “Poor pitiful me.”

    No matter how atrocious their behavior, no matter the consistent destructive pattern of behavior, the sociopath is the one who always has an excuse, the one for whom the rules never apply, the one who makes up their own rules and then cries foul when you object to their arbitrary rules, the one who plays both victim and saint, is the same person who throws themselves a “pity party”. It practically diagnostic.

    • Moving Forward

      And the diagnosis is correct. It describes my ex perfectly. If only others could see that.

  9. M&M

    This is a GREAT post, but how would you (anyone who wants to comment) respond if a confused, “in the fog” victim said something like this? “I pity him because I don’t want to be like him” (don’t want to be an uncaring person). “I won’t hurt his feelings because I don’t want to be like him. I won’t show anger because I don’t want to be an abuser.”

  10. M&M

    Yes I know there’s a difference between discipline and abuse, but how to explain that to a confused person?

  11. If Paul’s Epistle to the Galatians was Published in Christianity Today [Internet Archive link]

    It’s gold. It satirises what’s going on in so many churches today.

  12. Still Reforming


  13. Annie

    My husband uses the “pity party” all the time. If fact, it’s kind of a joke between me and the kids — dad and his “poor me”. Sometimes we say to each other something like “oh, put an extra cookie on dad’s plate so he knows someone loves him” and then we all laugh.

    He continually seeks out evidence to reinforce his “poor me” theme. After someone we knew was bullied he dismissed it as fantasy but then proceeded to make that his theme even to the point of casting everything that’s ever happened to him as being perpetrated by bullies against him. This has been his theme for several years now. Until he took up this theme he’d never mentioned anything about being bullied. Now apparently it’s a regular occurrence for him by many different people. Curiously, it all people he’s had differences with.

    Several years ago one day he was badgering me because he asked a question I didn’t know the answer to. He didn’t believe me and I guess thought I was lying. I didn’t know the answer and said so several times. But he kept escalating the badgering and I just stopped answering and walked off. He followed and stood next to me trying to badger me into responding but I just stayed focused on the task in front of me. He left frustrated. Then walked back into the room and said he was tired of my bullying — that I was bullying him into talking the way I wanted him to talk!!!

    • M&M

      Annie, 😦 😦 😦 and so glad your kids don’t fall for it.

  14. Tess

    Oh yes…. How our enemy loves to deceive sincere Christians with regard to pity / compassion…. How desperately we need Holy Spirit wisdom to discern when it is Godly to show pity…. Worldly wisdom is of no use as Jeff states.

    We need to draw closer to the precious Holy Spirit in order to get this right…. To get it wrong can be disastrous for hurting people, for broken people and their families…. Can cause breakdowns and even suicide…. Churches who support the unrighteous are not Spirit-led…. They are as evil, devil-led and as ungodly as the abuser…. This is so sad…. It must break the heart of our Heavenly Father.

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