Let’s Put Away the Childish Nonsense We Have Been Taught About Who is a Christian!
Jeff Crippen ♦ 8th August 2015 ♦ 33 Comments
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.
One of the biggest and most widespread false teachings and beliefs in the church is the idea that if someone says with their mouth they believe in Jesus, they are a Christian, they are saved, and no one must EVER question that! How did we ever get to this point of buying into such nonsense? All that mere words qualify a person to be is a demon:
You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe–and shudder! James 2:19
This is the reason why the wicked, including abusers, are able to carry on their masquerade in our churches. And it is the reason why so many abuse victims are put through so much doubt, fog, misery, and grief. “But he is a Christian, isn’t he?” No. Somehow like the black plague this lie has been spread by the false teachings of rats for a long, long time. Think of the devastation it causes, the faith of the weak it extinguishes, the distortions of God’s own character it promotes. A wicked person is not a Christian!
“If you confess with your mouth….”. Yes, but don’t stop there. “And believe in your heart…” (Romans 10). A transformed heart, you see. A heart that evidences it’s changed nature by the fruit of the Spirit…love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, self-control. That is a Christian.
Over and over and over again we get validated reports of churches insisting that the wicked, including abusers, are indeed children of God. The thing is preposterous. It denies the Cross and tramples underfoot the blood of the Son of God shed for us. It adds even more wicked ones to our churches where they hide as “hidden reefs” (Jude 1:12).
Jesus did not regard the Pharisees and scribes as children of God. Why do we?
You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies. (John 8:44)
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AMEN and Amen!!
Thank you Pastor Jeff
Abuse is so prevalent in churches across this land.
The leadership is a master at intimidation.
He hides behind the badge of a crucified christ.
No one confronts a pastor.
Especially when they are highly educated.
If you catch him in false doctrine…
He won’t agree with the truth!
He kicks you out.
Thank you, Ps. Jeff, for boldly stating the truth, unlocking the door, letting the sunshine in so that the fog can lift. On the one hand, it is upsetting to read this because I feel so helpless, to know truth and not be able to shout it from a pulpit or say it to my family. On the other hand, I am making good [use] of the truth by slowly starting over on where I left off when I agreed to be engaged to my abusive ex. No, I can’t be a young age again, but I can purge the possessions I have been holding onto, surrounding me as if I can still bring some beauty out of old memories. Truth is, [over three decades] of marriage to a covert aggressive was torture, getting past the divorce has been very painful and a whole lot of hard work. So while I have slowly been ridding myself of this and that, I now am determined to erase all clues in my living space that can connect me to that abuser and the memories that hang like old cobwebs.
Growing up, the first criterion for marriage, must marry a Christian. HA!
Seeing Clearly, you sound so much like I feel. I want so much to go back to that place around engagement and start over where I left off. I am still stuck with him with three minor children. There aren’t too many more years left before they are grown, but right now it appears that remaining under the same roof is the best option. I am always keeping my eyes open for when that changes. As I read you talk about holding on to the possessions, hoping to bring some beauty out of the old memories, I knew what you meant. I would generally be the kind to purge some things, but I feel like I can’t until I can make peace with my children’s childhoods being distorted. It’s like I cling to their old toys as I try to remember the good times with them. It’s hard to describe, but I know that I need to purge. I know when I am finally away from him I will want as much of him expunged from my life as possible. What I am really stuck in is my children bearing his name. I feel physically distressed, as well as spiritually – because the Bible seems to place so much significance on names. I know that if I had no children I would change my name in a heartbeat. I want to have the same name as my children, though, and even if I did change mine, it makes me ill to know that my children are bearing the name of this lying, deceitful evil man.
Seeing the Light,
I am recently divorced and had the opportunity to take my maiden name back, something I greatly desire to do. BUT, for our child’s sake – to keep a connection with her – I decided to keep my married name (even though it is his) for her sake. That way, when we’re introduced or have events together or anything social, she and I are still “family” in that way – recognized as such. But it’s just a name, and I treat it like that. It’s not who I am – and it’s not who she is. Someday, Lord willing, she may marry and change that name – or even decide she wants to change it to no longer be associated with him. I plan, if the Lord grant me the years, to change it once it’s no longer necessary to keep it for her sake.
Honestly, I don’t think so much about the name – even though names (some names – not necessarily all names) bear some kind of significance in Scripture. Those are generally names given by people, unless the Lord Himself gave someone(s) in particular names of His own choosing, which if I’m not mistaken, He promises to do with us someday too. So that is the name that is important to me really. Not this surname down here on the earth where I’m just passing through. 🙂
I forgot I had more to add… Seeing Clearly, do you have children? If so, they bear his name? Have you struggled with this? Has anyone else out here struggled with this?
To those who struggle with your abusers last name.
May it be a comfort to know that God in His sovereign knowledge and grace.. Knew who would be your parents. Knew who you would marry. Knew what your married name would be. He doesn’t refer to you as Mrs so and so. Or even refer to you as … whatever your maiden last name.
If you have been covered in the fathers sacrifice. The shed blood that washes your sin as white as snow. He sees you in His son. Jesus Christ. Forgiven! and He is preparing you for heaven.
You are a redeemed child of the most high King.
Walk in faith!
Nothing can separate us from God’s Love. Romans 8:38-39
And He gives us all a new name! His name.
Thank you for the beautiful thoughts, Still Reforming and Isurvivedabuse. They are a comfort.
My children bear their father’s last and I still do as well. When I filed for divorce, their worlds were turned upside down. They would rather claim their father than me at that time. They were adults at that time. To change my name would have added to the confusion and served no good purpose. My children and I are on good terms now, but neither has asked me to tell them why I divorced. As I reacquaint with old friends, my last name does not matter. Anyone who accepts me for who I am, regardless of the divorce simply uses my first name anyway. Perhaps to these people, it is a reminder of what I came out of and are happy to find me smiling and healthy.
Yes, I do struggle with my children having the same name as the man who hurt me so badly. And it’s worse because almost all of his family treat me with contempt. Most people completely accept that I have a different name from my children, but there are still a few who judge me. I dislike it when people recognize the name and ask after my ex’s family, because I have no contact with any of them. Most of all it’s distressing to me to even hear the name spoken or see it written, and I cringe when someone calls me “Mrs X”. But I remind myself that my children have their own strong identities. They are not owned by their father or any of his family, and their good character puts the other people with that surname to shame.
Same here. I even have an adult son who will sometimes sign his name in emails to me with my maiden name, he gets so disgusted with his father. It twists me inside to say Mrs. X when a child asks. Thankfully, at my church, ladies are often called Miss (first name), married or single. I, too, think about changing my name when the kids are grown. And my eldest daughter would change hers the day I change mine, if not sooner. She has no expectation or desire to marry, so that may be the way it goes. His family has nothing to do with us; they only ever cared about him, so now it is easy since we are no longer together. Only one sister-in-law cares about me, and she never was impressed with him anyways.
Thank you, KayE and Moving Forward, for your thoughts. I, too, hate to hear Mrs. X. I have made it a matter of prayer that God would make a way for my children and me to change our names. I think there would only be one hold-out among the children, and I pray that the Lord would change that child’s heart. I have one child who would change names today if given the opportunity because that child sees him as he is.
I also struggle with dealing with all the old possessions, the things I no longer want or need, but can’t get rid of because of the memories. There are the bitter, sad memories that cause flashbacks and prevent me from even dealing with the stuff. Then there are the happy memories of my children when they were young, memories that are locked behind the wall of terror. I fear that if I throw everything away without care then I will lose those precious memories forever. As it is, there is a gap of about 10 years from which I remember almost nothing. I was forced to deal with some of this stuff when I moved house, but I couldn’t deal with it all, so I threw things in boxes and put them in storage. Unfortunately even the appliances and furniture carry bad memories of the abuser and I just can’t afford to get rid of it all.
KayE – A similar thing happened to me during the 8 years at our first church. Our two children were pre-school, then elementary school in that time. While I do have memories, including good ones, I also know that many were wiped out and prevented from forming due to a core of wicked abusers parading as Christians. I didn’t understand what was happening at the time. I am also certain that I missed out on more memories during our children’s high school years – once again because of evil ones working their blackness against our ministry. The abuse so consumes you that you don’t notice the rest of your life going by.
A large part of wanting to get rid of stuff today was a sense of wanting to remove all reminders of the evil that I was unknowingly living with. I find the knowledge that I was married to a non-believer repulsive. Even more so because he was a minister, studying God’s Word and pretending to hear God. He was the voice of god to people. I was the ever-giving pastors’ wife who was second in line to his commitments to church. And I worked at my career to supplement the salary offered him. It is very upsetting to have missed so much of my children’s lives due to depression. I spent large amounts of money and gave up hours and hours of precious time in counseling appointments trying to stay afloat. We logged in many painful hours with [number redacted] different marriage counselors.
My mind holds a place of voices of him and currently, his family, criticizing me for who knows what. So now I am working through a process of saying “no” to those nagging condemnations. It never seems to stop. And perhaps some of it is the subtlety of wicked reminders hanging around. My bathroom had the same pictures in groupings until a few hours ago. So each morning, in a sense, I walked back into that old bathroom. And I liked those pictures, so comfortable and familiar. Today it really impacted me that these are remnants of that evil stench. Some of it has to do with how I choose to keep things just the way he conditioned me to. When he noticed I was tossing something out, he would question me as to the reason. That simple question sometimes caused me to keep it. Some things had potential, but were never finished. I still hold onto things in that same manner as a project. They, too, are representative of his mental influence.
After the divorce, while still coming out of the fog, it was difficult to concentrate or make decisions. I needed to be healed enough to even carry out this new commitment, ridding myself of this stuff.
In the marriage, I was simply a means to his end. He did not want 2 humans in the marriage.
He intended it to be all about him. He shook his fist at God and said that I was not for God’s glory, but was for his glory. Now that I accept this devastating reality, I now want to rid myself of all that speaks of him. I want to make this point clear that if he were asked if he is a child of God, his answer would be, “yes”. He could tell you an entirely different story about the events of our marriage and it would not put me in a good light at all.
I am able to separate in my mind and heart the things that speak of just my children and can keep their things.
Seeing Clearly – This is healing in progress! Quite painful at times, but this is really good. You have seen and continue to see truth, and that entails seeing his evil in even more clarity, especially how it affected you and your thinking. You are very courageous. You stood against this wickedness in “high places” that paraded as “the Lord’s servant.” Nothing sickens and angers me more than these hypocrites standing in pulpits, “counseling” Christ’s people, all the while a wolf in wool. But you stood against it, and are standing against it. You are on freedom road. Many blessings in Christ.
Seeing Clearly, I too find it repulsive to realize I married an unbeliever. Mine was not a pastor, but he puts himself in the position to lead children at church when he can. This sickens me as I now see that he could never have pulled off leading adults since I believe he would have been found out to be spiritually dead trying to teach his peers, so by teaching children, he has fooled everyone. Yet in our home from the very beginning I was so filled with fear that God hated me that I completely fell for his spiritual superiority over me for two decades. I never feared God that way before my anti-husband came into my life. The sequence of events leading up to our “marriage” were so strange now that I look back with eyes that have been opened that I truly believe there was a strong element of demonic influence. (The blindness I experienced for two decades followed by a shocking “scales falling from my eyes” experience that I can only credit to God strengthen this suspicion). I lived in terror of God’s displeasure that was intimately connected with my anti-husband’s displeasure. My health broke. You missed much of your children’s lives due to depression. I missed it due to ill health. For over a decade I have had serious health problems that are now chronic and I am mostly homebound. I haven’t been able to drive nearly all of that time. I ache when I think of all the things I have missed. And for every experience that I missed, that a mother should have been having with her kids, he was doubling up and getting not only a father’s experiences with our children, but those that should have been mine as well. All the while that I was crying at home alone because I was too weak and ill to go anywhere, I was feeling guilty for being such a burden while he was eating it up and having an even greater influence on their lives and playing the martyr who put up with a sick, sinful wife. Devastating.
You said: “In the marriage, I was simply a means to his end. He did not want 2 humans in the marriage. He intended it to be all about him. He shook his fist at God and said that I was not for God’s glory, but was for his glory. Now that I accept this devastating reality, I now want to rid myself of all that speaks of him. I want to make this point clear that if he were asked if he is a child of God, his answer would be, “yes”. He could tell you an entirely different story about the events of our marriage and it would not put me in a good light at all.”
I could have written this paragraph of yours, except for the part about shaking his fist at God. Mine would never do that. He is fully invested in being the good one. I am the bad one. I am the one that would shake my fist at God. He would never do that. Yet, the rest fits. Last year we had a series of long conversations where I probed into some old situations and issues, including why he married me. Without apology, he revealed without actually using the word, that I was a tool. He was the one with a calling from God. He was the one with special blessings, talents, and abilities from God. I was selected for qualities that would help him achieve his desires and dreams. There was no mention of love. There was incredulity that I did not consider myself blessed to be able to live my life with such a wonderful person. More recently it has become obvious that he does not see Christ as the head of our home. He is. All the kids and I need to do is get in line and do whatever he wants unfailingly and enjoy it and be grateful for the opportunity. He is the one with relationship to Christ. We are to look up to him. He would never admit to it this blatantly, but when I add up all the things he has revealed from our conversations and put them together, this is what I get.
When I consider that I would never even allow this person to babysit my children now that I know what he is, it is very hard to see him spend any time alone with them. I find myself wishing away the rest of my children’s childhoods just so I can get away from him and hope they will want the same. Some of them do. They would probably even change their names. One of my children, however – anti-husband’s chosen golden child – is falling for his performance and appears to feel loyalty toward him. This child is also taking on many of his characteristics. I have so much fear for this child’s future and eternity.
My personal opinion is..
I think these pastors when to school to learn the fine art of “How to control your flock.”
If your a born again child with the power of the Holy Spirit.
You know where their power comes from.
If ain’t God.
Righteous anger under control.
The church needs to speak it.
Lord help us to speak your word in love.
And just as bad in my book – the wicked and evil are accepted in church even knowing they aren’t Christians and in spite of the discomfort of their victims and targets – all in an effort to “love them to Jesus,” as if the love of man is going to sway God to saving these wicked men from themselves. That’s arrogance and the pride of man at work in the pulpit and leadership to insist they can “love him to the Lord.”
Besides the treacherous use of the badge Christian, is the covert acceptance of evil and absolutely carnal or immoral behavior in the name of Christian love. People are a work in progress but those that actually have Christ resident in their spirit are going to become more and more Christ like. They are quick to repent, quick to humble themselves, and deeply grieved should they offend, this is not so with the abuser whose subterfuge and deception is quickly accepted by the non-discerning. We call indifference to the suffering caused by abusers “not judging” but we judge the victims profoundly by inaction and the brotherly handshake extended to their tormenter. Love, the way Jesus displayed it, was fierce. Protecting the humble heart, ruthlessly ripping into the proud, they executed him because his fierce love of truth and the needy so offended the good ole boys. I once had a job that involved advocacy. At the risk of my job, my popularity at work, the good ole boys in power, I pushed for victims rights relentlessly. I paid deeply for it, in retrospect, I realized I loved those people that needed help and advocacy and that love in that case, looked fierce. We call the sentimental hogwash that turns a blind eye to perpetrators because people don’t to get involved love. Its a lie. Jesus modeled perfect love, children on his lap, picking accused women off the ground and tearing into those that were popular at church calling them a den of snakes. Fierce, ethical, honorable, truthful, sacrificial, willing to inconvenience itself love looks like that.
Would that Webster had you at his side when he penned the definition of “love” in his dictionary!
preach it, Prodigal Daughter Returned!
Within an hour of the police enforcing the protection order and removing my second husband from the home, I went back home and like a whirlwind pulled all his ornaments off the shelves and put them in the spare room (his family collect them weeks later, and I was rid of them for good). It was a purge; I felt compelled to do it, I don’t know why. It hadn’t been like that with my first husband.
But I understand not wanting or not being able to throw things away too: I think chattels and fittings in our homes can have so many different significances, and each of us have our own way of navigating that part of the journey of separation and recovery.
I agree, Barbara, about each person making their own way of navigating this part of the journey. What I am choosing to do should not be used as a marker of healing for anyone else.
Seeing the Light,
It would have been more correctly stated if I had said that “he shook the fist of his heart and mind at God”. He appeared so passive and uninvolved. But he was a determined man. No one ever told him “no” and got away with it. He had his own technique. Very covert. He had a technique of getting people to offer him anything he wanted. I am embarrassed to even begin a list of the perks and helps he received, from the most unassuming to board members. I am not referring to people giving to the church. I am talking about people giving to him. I think it is called having no conscience….
Seeing the light –
I can relate with your story.
The light bulb flashed on for me while my healing was taking place.
A narc has a cunning way to get what he wants. He feels ( entitled ) to purks and benifits. The guy on the other end is a giver… By heart. The taker is a pro at watching the giver. Give.
I gave so much that I could not give anymore.
I am learning to give to those who are in need. Not want. Entitlement is a behavior issue. It fills their tank at winning the prize without paying the price. They get a benifit. At the cost of the giver.
Herjourney, I have come to learn the hard way the truth of what you have said – that the taker is a pro at watching the giver. It’s so true. I made it pretty easy, too. I remember when we were just friends (which I think was just part of the process of hooking me in), he would test me. I was so blatant about how friends should give and be there for each other and he should never hesitate to depend on me if he had need: tangible things, a listening ear, etc. It’s like I painted the target on my forehead myself.
Seeing Clearly, I understand you now about shaking his fist. I don’t think mine has a conscience either. You can almost see him studying people to figure out how he is supposed to behave to play his chosen role. My counselor thinks he may be a sociopath.
I wish more churches and pastors would read these posts.
My ex is looking to change his membership to his new church. Little do they know what an evil wolf they have in their midst. All the while he continues to lie to and manipulate those around him.
When are you coming back, Jesus? We need you so much! My heart aches for all I have been through, and my kids, too. I hate sending them with their dad.
I did not know the “C”hristian existed until reading the ACFJ blog. I was naive. Thinking a few I thought were Christian – in hindsight – were probably “C”hristian.
Sometimes the differences are obvious….sometimes, not so much….