ABUSERS & THEIR TACTICS, Church Governance or Policy Issues, Extra-Biblical Nonsense, Kevin DeYoung, Misuse of Scripture, The Gospel Coalition

Kevin DeYoung Pushes Church Memberships and Making Vows

Church Membership, Pastor Kevin DeYoung, Making Vows, The Gospel Coalition, here we go again!

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At The Gospel Coalition website, Pastor Kevin DeYoung has a new article on church membership, 6 Reasons Why Membership Matters. The title is not correct. It should be:

“6 Reasons Why Church Membership Matters to Controlling Pastors.”

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As long as celebrity church leaders continue to push this dangerous teaching, my blogging friends from coast to coast will be pushing back.

Thank you, Amos, for bringing this article to my attention. Let’s just jump on in and I’ll add my editorial comments:

1. In joining a church you make visible your commitment to Christ and his people. Membership is one way to raise the flag of faith. You state before God and others that you are part of this local body of believers.

You do NOT need to be a member to raise the flag of faith. Your presence and fellowship among a body of believers is enough proof.

2. Making a commitment makes a powerful statement in a low-commitment culture. Many bowling leagues require more of their members than our churches.

Our commitment is to Christ and His precepts. Why is DeYoung keeping this so narrow to a body of believers at a church? The Body of Christ reaches far outside the confines of a physical building.

3. We can be overly independent. In the West, it’s one of the best and worst thing about us. We are free spirits and critical thinkers. We get an idea and run with it. But whose [sic] running with us? And are any of us running in the same direction? Membership states in a formal way, “I am part of something bigger than myself. I am not just one of three hundred individuals. I am part of a body.”

Part of a body following whom? One leader? How about following Christ?

4. Church membership keeps us accountable. When we join a church we are offering ourselves to one another to be encouraged, rebuked, corrected, and served. We are placing ourselves under leaders and submitting to their authority (Heb. 13:7). We are saying, “I am here to stay. I want to help you grow in godliness. Will you help me to do the same?”

There it is, the most popular verse used by leaders who to control their underlings. It does not require church membership to encourage one another. This is just nuts. When did church memberships start?  25-50 years ago?  Why weren’t there membership rules before that?

5. Joining the church will help your pastor and elders be more faithful shepherds. Hebrews 13:7 says “Obey your leaders and submit to their authority.” That’s your part as “laypeople”. Here’s our part as leaders: “They keep watch over you as men who must give an account.”

Ack – two times he’s using that verse to push an authority position.

As a pastor I take very seriously my responsibility before God to watch care for souls. At almost every elders’ meeting the RCA Book of Church Order instructed us “seek to determine whether any members of the congregation are in need of special care regarding their spiritual condition and/or not making faithful use of the means of grace.”

Code language:  let’s see who is messing up so we can use our self-appointed authority positions and put people in church discipline. “Making faithful use of the means of grace?”  Say what? What exactly does this mean?

This is hard enough to do in a church like ours where there is constant turnover, but it’s even harder when we don’t know who is really a part of this flock.

Me thinks they probably take roll here to determine who is present or not present. Watch out!

To give just one example, we try to be diligent in following up with people who haven’t been at our church for a while. This is a challenge. But if you never become a member, we can’t tell if you are really gone, because we might not be sure if you were ever here! It’s nearly impossible for the elders to shepherd the flock when they don’t know who really considers them their shepherds.

Yup, there it is. And if I say that I can’t make it to Sunday because I’m out of town at my daughter’s volleyball tournaments, and that excuse doesn’t pass their test, then what? Church discipline?

6. Joining the church gives you an opportunity to make promises. . . . They are solemn vows. And we must hold each other to them. If you don’t join the church, you miss an opportunity to publicly make these promises, inviting the elders and the rest of the body to hold you to these promises-which would be missing out on great spiritual benefit, for you, your leaders, and the whole church.

Hold on, just a minute. Did he just say vows? This pastor is telling you to go against Scripture?

vow Kevin DeYoung, church membership
Source

“Again you have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not swear falsely, but shall perform to the Lord what you have sworn.’ But I say to you, Do not take an oath at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God, or by the earth, for it is his footstool, or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King. And do not take an oath by your head, for you cannot make one hair white or black. Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil. Matthew 5: 33-37

Articles from women bloggers (Dee and Deb from The Wartburg Watch) from the East Coast to SSB on the West Coast warning about these dangerous teachings:

145 thoughts on “Kevin DeYoung Pushes Church Memberships and Making Vows”

  1. And let me add that that preacher ought to have his pulpit overturned in front of him and be run straight out of the church at the crack of a whip.

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  2. Agreed, Gary W. I posted that clip because it shocked me how lazily the argument was presented. What does *Jesus became poor so we could become rich* have to do with a tithe sermon? lol

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  3. Gary W: It was not intended to be a “shot’ of any sort. I simply think that regardless of the wrongs committed by the ancestors of the Boer/Afrikaner, they are made in God’s image and should have our sympathy. I cannot think of a nation whose ancestors did not sin against other nations. This does not mean that Boer/Afrikaner should be murdered and raped. It does not redress any past wrong, and is an attack on the imago dei which they also bear. Oddly enough, people forget that the English put Boer women and children into concentration camps. Heck, even americans from the North and Northwest did bad things to Native Americans.

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  4. Truth Detector: Amen re: Arminians. One of my sons just got back from spending a few days with Arminian relatives, one of whom said he was not “saved” because he is a Lutheran.

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  5. To all: I do not mean any of my posts above to be offensive or hurtful. Christ’s Blessings to you all!

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  6. Bringing this back on the topic of vows and membership, I’d find it hard to believe that members of RevKev’s church who are failing in his mandatory10% tithe would NOT experience the blessing of church discipline for that infraction. Many covenants I’ve seen include a phrase about supporting the church financially, and that might mean 10% for all-because, you know, Jesus became poor so we could become rich.

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  7. Yes, Truth Detector, and do you suppose these misadventuring klepto-shepherds would respond in humble repentance if anybody could get close enough to them to make them aware of the error of their ways. No, no. We would each and every one of us be accused of being angry, bitter, gossiping, divisive reviling sons of the satan.

    Plus, I wonder if it’s just me, or is it possible this Kevin preacher has actually practiced a tone of voice and general demeanor that ends up projecting the feigned humility of those who see themselves as better than the rest of us. Actually, I have to hand it to anyone who can almost pull off the appearance of being meek and humble while at the same time being so condescending to an auditorium of full of people from whom he unashamedly demands, as a beginning, 10% of everything they make. Wonder if he makes an exception for widows and orphans?

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  8. Keith, you say ” Heck, even americans from the North and Northwest did bad things to Native Americans.” Probably if one were to look they would see that we are still doing bad things to the nations and peoples whose land we now occupy. I’m aware of a situation where land near where I live was given to individual members of a certain tribe in about the 1920’s–except that the deeds have restrictions that kept them from selling the gifted land without the consent of the Bureau of Indian Affairs. To this day their descendants still cannot sell their land.

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  9. @Daisy:

    Some of them, like pastor Steve Furtick, have actually made comments like that from the pulpit, he screams at his congregation that their church is all about the new guy, but once the new guy joins, they expect that new guy to turn around and reel in more new guys.

    LIke Amway or any other pyramid scheme?

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  10. Or a Ponzi scheme. It’s pure fraud, because the people neither get truth nor kindness nor love from these types, all they get is sucked dry, and the early followers of the abusive leader get to lie about their experiences and how much blessing they’ve received, thus attracting further followers who get abused and sucked dry of finances and joy. No, it has more to do with Charles Ponzi than Amway, but I see where you’re coming from and you’re right in spirit.

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  11. Giving is good, of course. But I’m not sure it counts for much when it is coerced. God looks at our hearts and seeks willing givers. It may be that when these thieving preachers coerce our giving they steal more than our money. It may be that they also steal the reward we would have received had they left us the resources to give according to our own hearts.

    Personally, I do not regret what giving I have done. However, when I look back at what was done with what I gave, I feel swindled. When the time comes for us to be placed with either the sheep or goats, I will be in big trouble if all I get credit for is what was done with the money I used to give to organized religious organizations.

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  12. I tried, Diane. I really did.

    I made it to 2:20 in that video. That was all I could take.

    Does this guy always lace his speech with so much guilt and shame? ‘Cause…wow.

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  13. @BIT~

    It’s part of an hour long sermon from two years ago. An HOUR… on tithing. O_O

    I am watching the entire thing right now in order to be fair to the one who is to be revered.

    The momentum behind the tithe sermon was a lack in giving, not meeting their budget and the church’s desire for 1) a rather large building renovation/addition and 2) hiring a full time international ministry director (because every church needs one).

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  14. @Diane

    They’d be far better off selling the buildings, telling people to give wherever God leads them to give, getting honest jobs in the private sector (like Paul did) and teaching while sitting in a chair across from a small group of other believers also sitting in chairs, eye-to-eye, no one on a raised stage, all of whom are considered to be exactly on the same level as them. If they sent their idols of church growth and influence and conference honoraria and fleeting fame aside, they’d possibly see Jesus. But if they keep hanging onto the idols, they might not ever know Jesus.

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  15. The momentum behind the tithe sermon was a lack in giving, not meeting their budget and the church’s desire for 1) a rather large building renovation/addition and 2) hiring a full time international ministry director (because every church needs one).

    Oh, isn’t it always? :/

    Or some variation on same.

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  16. Church has begun at this morning’s SSB Gathering post. Anybody who is suffering from shame and guilt after watching the DeYoung clip on tithing may relieve the spiritual and psychological pressure by sending 10% of last week’s income to our own Julie Anne, who is self evidently our anointed pastor, bishop, apostle and priest. If one’s bank does not have a service by which cash can be sent to an email address (posted above), PayPal, Google Wallet or similar services may be used.

    I’m sure “pastor” DeYoung would approve.

    Personally, I’m suffering no shame or guilt whatsoever.

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  17. “The European reformation was not monolithic”

    Not doctrinally, no. But wrestling political/financial control from Rome was pretty monolithic and drove the whole thing. Do you honestly think the Princes would have backed Luther if he had taken the side of the downtrodden in the peasants war, for example? Of course not. There was little spiritual about it

    My view is we have mostly been sold rewritten history when it comes to the Reformation. Don’t get me wrong, I think it had to happen that way but lets not kid ourselves what it was about. There was very little of Christ about it. To see it more clearly, it really helps to read secular history in the area of politics and economics.

    Our real inspiration really should be the radicals that gave their lives on principal of the freedom of conscience against a magisterial Christendom that forced conformity in belilefs. Guys like Felix Manz (and his wife),Conrad Grebel, Menno Simons, George Blaurock etc. They are barely a footnote in most of Reformed history and that is a crying shame. Look at all the saints in the huge book, Martyrs Mirror.

    Why aren’t some of these men/women who put their beliefs in freedom of conscience household names like Cavlin or Luther? Because most of their writings, etc were destroyed and they were having too much influence so what we know about them is mostly from their persecutors…who are considered heros today. It is upside down.

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  18. “Lydia00: Are you aware that many Boer are now destitute and homeless, and many have been murdered since the ANC took power? Do you have any sympathy for these people who did not choose to be born there? RSA is a violent place, it has the horrible distinction of being one of the “leaders” in the world in the crime of rape.”

    I don’t think that sort of evil inhumanity to ANYONE should be excused because of evils done in the past. Are you seriously asking me if I am delighting in
    Boers being homeless and destitute. Is that really your takeaway from my points concerning history?

    I have sympathy for the German people whose Lutheran church leaders so easily captiulated to demands of allegiance from the Nazi Regime.

    Is that what you are asking? I don’t really understand your point based upon my point concerning the spread of Calvinistic doctrinal thinking (determinism) over history and how that manifested itself politically, socially, financially.

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  19. Church has begun at this morning’s SSB Gathering post. Anybody who is suffering from shame and guilt after watching the DeYoung clip on tithing may relieve the spiritual and psychological pressure by sending 10% of last week’s income to our own Julie Anne, who is self evidently our anointed pastor, bishop, apostle and priest.

    LOL – oh, please. I’m blog owner, that’s it 🙂

    SSB does not receive tithe $$, but I have been known to be the middleman to anonymously pass $$ to people in need. And it has been pure joy to do so.

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  20. Diane

    Really appreciate your research.

    Seems you have his number – The number of “the one who is to be revered.” 🙂

    “this is not a new article by RevKev. It was originally posted in 2009 at TGC.
    He just changed the title.”

    And great posts by that professor on De Young’s “Tithe Sermon”

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  21. Tithing to SSB?! LOL! Does that mean I could potentially be an Associate Pastor? By the way, if I have to be called a “Director” or “Coordinator” I’m not taking the job!

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  22. I have a question. If I tithe to SSB, does that mean you have to become a 501c whatever corp to get the tax-exempt status and me to get the write-off? Not that I can ever write off donations. I never file long form, but I am curious.

    Kathi, you are too funny!! Julie Anne, that is a wonderful middle-woman thing to do.

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  23. Brenda, I don’t accept tithe $$. I have no idea about tax laws and 501c stuff. If you are looking for some place to give $$, keep your ears/eyes open to needs around you. I think God will guide you as you seek Him.

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  24. JA, Another failed attempt at humor on my part. I really should give up on that. I am obviously not good at it.

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  25. Oh, shoot, Brenda, I missed it. I’m sitting here doing my homework between reading comments and missed the humor. I really need to lighten up! 🙂

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  26. Hi Daisy,

    Thanks for the well wishes. 🙂

    “Candice Watters and Boundless are horrible about singleness and marriage. They don’t deal with any singles who are over 30. They only care about singles who are under 30.
    Watters also thinks the way to help adult singles is to obsess over marriage even more – but obsessing over marriage is precisely one reason so many adult singles drop out of church. Singles don’t hear their concerns discussed or addressed by churches.

    Does Watters care? No. She just digs her heels in on that even more, insisting that churches keep pushing marriage and ignore singles.”

    Yeah, pretty much it. The only one at Boundless with any credibility is Lisa Anderson, as she is/was in her 40s and still single. At least she’s honest enough to say she doesn’t know why God leaves so many of us single. At least she’ll cry alongside with us. Candice Watters only writes articles about how we should be scared of getting older without getting married, and how we’ll end up alone with 200 cats if we don’t hurry up and find a mate. (I have a dog anyway. Not scared at all of 200 cats invading my home.)

    Here’s the link to what she posted to me: http://www.boundless.org/advice/2011/i-care-for-my-disabled-parent-is-it-unrealistic-to-hope-for-marriage

    She starts off all nice, then devolves into wishy washy advice that amounts to, “You can only take care of your mom when you’re married if your husband approves. Otherwise, if hubby doesn’t let you, then you’ll have to dump her.” Completely unbiblical. Marriage should be a partnership where both spouses obey God’s commands together. Taking care of one’s parents isn’t an option–it’s a command. She also acts like the church will help. Ha. Ha. Ha. There’s so many horrifying things in her response that I’d be there forever picking it apart. I’m sure you’ll spot them easily. Like the one where I shouldn’t get married for what I’ll get out of it–even though she writes articles that make it sound like I’ll end up an old bag with 200 cats, so hurry up and get married so I don’t end up miserable. Isn’t that getting something out of it? Isn’t that an impure motivation to not want 200 cats? Since when was God against us wanting a mate for ourselves, and not just to be a doormat servant-slave for another person? If the only thing in it for me is to be a doormat slave, then why would I ever want to get married at all, never knowing if I got anything in return? Duh. 200 cats sounds better and better. But I think I’ll keep my dog.

    One of these days I’ll have the energy and willpower to write back and give her a piece of my mind. I usually don’t care. Though I probably should. There’s at least another Boundless commentor I used to chat with who took care of a brother who had down syndrome. She deserves a better response than this, as does anyone else in a situation similar to mine. Candice Watters just told them to ditch their loved ones and hope the church magically helps out if their someday-husbands tell them to.

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  27. “Kevin DeYoung @RevKevDeYoung
    · 16h 16 hours ago
    I’ll be preaching on 1 John 5:1-5 tomorrow at URC (9:15, 11:00). I’ll try to respond to some objections from this week’s blog too. Join us!”

    I am going to try to listen. I am curious how he is going to address objections.

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  28. Lydia00: Menno Simons is a household name, i.e. the Mennonites. Why not Muentzer? You mention the Peasant’s War, but don’t mention him.

    Re: Afrikaner/Boer: Well, they certainly are not “determining” anything now.

    Re: Lutherans and NSDAP, we have been through this before. I know you do not care for Lutherans, which does not bother me, but I can list a lot of Lutherans, both church leaders (Bonhoeffer, hanged, Flossenburg) and political leaders (Goerdeler) (who ended up hanging from a hook in Ploetzensee) who did what they could.

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  29. “Lydia00: Menno Simons is a household name, i.e. the Mennonites. Why not Muentzer? You mention the Peasant’s War, but don’t mention him.”

    Because he was denounced by the other radical reformers of that time. They were mostly against any sort of magisterial tyranny of that kind. The Ana Baptists were not monolithic. There were some followers of Hoffman in the Low Countries that broke off and were somewhat violent, too. They were also denounced by the other radicals.

    The Mennonites who descended from that movement are probably more well known now than they were 100 years ago– even by evangelicals because of the internet. They came here, pretty much kept to themselves and kept their “separateness” for a long time that they were known for as they fled from the Reformers across the Low Countries.

    I totally agree with you about Bonhoeffer. I wish more had shown his courage. He even came back to Germany when he could have stayed in England.

    What we are really discussing is who had power at particular times in history and what they did with it. That is the real underlying theme. And whether Catholic or Protestant, the church had power and used it for evil. Rebellions were crushed. People burned, banished, tortured for non conformity to the church/state. Why we celebrate these people today as hero’s I will never understand.

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  30. “I am going to try to listen. I am curious how he is going to address objections.”

    That is easy to do when it is kept to one way communication. If it is anything like what I have seen back stages, they are very careful what “objections” they respond to publicly. Everything is carefully controlled.

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  31. “She starts off all nice, then devolves into wishy washy advice that amounts to, “You can only take care of your mom when you’re married if your husband approves. Otherwise, if hubby doesn’t let you, then you’ll have to dump her.” Completely unbiblical. ”

    I read the most interesting opinion piece in the WSJ years ago (before the internet) where the author had changed her entire life to care for her elderly mother. She called it “mercy living”. And she would not change a thing about her decisions.

    If the husband does not approve, then he cannot be trusted to take care of her if it comes to that.

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  32. “That is easy to do when it is kept to one way communication. If it is anything like what I have seen back stages, they are very careful what “objections” they respond to publicly. Everything is carefully controlled.”

    You mean like the TGC Q/A panel sessions where the questions from the audience are supposedly not known beforehand by the panel? lol

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  33. On the topic of caring for an ailing, elderly mother and marrying, I was fortunately able to do both. My fiancé moved across the country to marry me and help take care of my terminally ill mother for a year and a half. I didn’t want to move her away from her friends and doctors, so he moved. Luckily he was able to continue in his job by telecommuting.

    He was absolutely wonderful to her, a great practical help to me, and he never once complained. His character and caring were two major reasons I fell in love with him to begin with. I am quite sure I couldn’t love a man who would want me to dump her in a nursing home and take off with him. And honestly, I look back and see what we gained from that time period and I can’t think of anything negative other than losing my mother of course.

    As for churches helping long term caregivers, I can’t think of one that ever did so. Help in a crisis, sure, but not as the years go on. I know someone who played the organ during church services for 29 years. As her chronically ill husband got worse and could no longer attend church, she couldn’t come to any of the groups or fellowship activities because he couldn’t be left alone and she couldn’t afford to have a nurse’s aid come in. Still she continued to volunteer and attend Sunday services for a few more years until money got even tighter and she couldn’t afford Sunday help either. After she stopped attending and contributing not one person ever contacted her again, not even her pastor. Not once.

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  34. “If the husband does not approve, then he cannot be trusted to take care of her if it comes to that.”

    I totally agree with that, lydia! Sadly, men don’t seem to connect the dots that I’ll take care of a husband who gets sick, and that I can prove by my present actions that I will, and that I’m a godly woman who obeys Jesus. They never asked me out at church. Their loss.

    Marsha, thanks for sharing your story. It’s nice to know that there are some great men out there, even if I never meet one myself. So sad what you said about the woman who used to play the church organ. It’s so typical. They only care about what you can give to them. They don’t have anything to give back. They’re only ministers to themselves, and not to the flock.

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  35. “Kevin DeYoung
    1 hr ·
    Pray for URC congregational meeting: electing officers, calling @Helopoulos as associate pastor, making pledges for PCA transition fund.”

    Making pledges? More money from the members? How I would have loved to instead have read…Hey members, no worries. We have the money…we are covering this. We do not want to burden you with these fees for switching denoms.

    I read that it will cost their church $280,000 to leave the RCA to become Presbys.

    And he that is to be revered wants more money? On top of a 10% tithe (floor not ceiling); on top of offerings; on top paying for a 2-3 million building addition and renovation they are currently undergoing? And he needs another $280 grand?

    It sounds very expensive to be a member of there.

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  36. @ Clockwork Angel
    I don’t know if I’ve heard of Lisa Anderson before or not, maybe I’ll look into her articles later.

    I will consider reading the link you gave me later, but I can’t promise – just reading your summary of it here sets me off. I’m afraid if I click through and read it, I may get so angry I may punch a hole in the wall. 🙂

    You said,

    “She starts off all nice, then devolves into wishy washy advice that amounts to, “You can only take care of your mom when you’re married if your husband approves. Otherwise, if hubby doesn’t let you, then you’ll have to dump her.”

    She seems to be framing this from a mindset that the husband = boss, the wife his underling.

    I think at the start of a relationship, you should discuss this situation with the guy you’re dating. He would then need to decide if he wants to enter a serious relationship that would take on an elderly or sick mother- in- law.

    You and the guy hammering out an agreement, or the guy deciding to go his way, is how two mature adults handle an obstacle.

    Watters makes it sound like the husband is the boss, it is a gender complementarian position.

    You don’t need your husband’s “approval” or “permission” to keep your mother.

    You said,

    “She also acts like the church will help. Ha. Ha. Ha.”

    Oh yeah, I know that is a joke and total lie.

    I know first hand that many church people are more into shaming and blaming than in actually helping other Christians who need help (my mother, who was a Christian, was one of the few exceptions I’ve seen about this, and a few Christians who post here).

    After my mother died, and I went to Christians for emotional support, and that would include Christians at a local church, I was told to stuff my pain down, go volunteer at soup kitchens, help homeless people get my mind off of me, I got shamed, lectured, criticized.

    I got anything and everything but actual HELP. I was not even asking for money, just emotional support, for pete’s sake.

    I’ve read so many stories that last few years about church people who served in a church for YEARS, but when they went to their church for help (emotional, financial, whatever it may be), they were told to go away and/or they were criticized for it, or shamed for having needs, or for asking for help.

    The New Testament says Christians are supposed to help other Christians, not give them lectures or platitudes -but many Christians ignore this.

    Yet, a lot of churches expect you to serve them! They expect you to show up regularly, mop the church floors, volunteer at functions, tithe, etc, but they don’t want to help you when you need it.

    (continued in Part 2)

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  37. @ Clockwork Angel / Part 2

    You said,

    “Like the one where I shouldn’t get married for what I’ll get out of it–even though she writes articles that make it sound like I’ll end up an old bag with 200 cats, so hurry up and get married so I don’t end up miserable. “

    The majority of Christian advice about dating and marriages contains huge contradictions and is filled with hypocrisy, so I tune it out now.

    There’s nothing wrong with wanting to married for “what you will get out of it” – that is precisely why other Christians get married – because they want to get something out of marriage (whether it’s companionship, sex, financial stability, whatever), but then some married Christians have the nerve to turn around and tell still-single adults, “That’s selfish if you view marriage that way.”

    The main reason most Christians (like Non Christians) get married is because they want to.

    So I find it so hypocritical that married Christians shame singles who want marriage by telling them, “You should not want to get married, you wanting it is the same as idoliziing it.”

    No. Wanting something is not necessarily akin to making it into an idol.

    Look at all the married Christian couples you see around you: had they not wanted to marry, they would still be single! Wanting something is a prerequisite to obtaining it.

    I am trying to make a long story short here, but let me tell you, I was in a serious relationship with a guy. I did what Christians say.
    I did not try to get my own needs met with my sweetie pie, let’s call him Scott (not his real name). I catered to Scott’s every want and need over the years we dated/ were engaged. I allowed him to exploit me financially, too.

    I was not looking to get anything out of it my relationship with Scott per se (maybe only love, affection, companionship) – but after years of Scott ignoring my needs and using me, I had enough.

    You cannot sustain a relationship indefinitely if you are not getting your needs met (and all humans have needs, even women), you cannot sustain a relationship if you are doing most of the giving, and the man is doing most of the taking.

    But the Christian gender complementarian view of marriage (which is what “Boundless” and other groups maintain) is that the wife exists only to meet the needs of the husband, it doesn’t matter if husband meets wife’s needs.

    I lived that view out with my ex- BF/finacee, and it did not work. I could not stand it anymore. I could not stand my needs were not being met over a period of years, but I was bending over backwards to meet Scott’s needs.

    Scott made out like a prince in our relationship, while I got nothing – not emotional support, not attention, no encouragement, no financial support, nada, zero, nothing. I was serving Scott, not being served – and I honest to God tried to be happy with that, it’s how Christians say you are to view other people, etc.

    I finally woke up and relaized I was being used. I was getting nothing out of it. So I dumped Scott. But stupid Christian dating advice on their stupid dating/ marriage sites keep telling single Christian women to keep doing this stuff.

    If you have this “doormat” mentality, (that it’s always selfish for you to have needs and get them met, and that it’s wrong for you to expect your mate to meet your needs), you will keep attracting men (and women friends) who will use you and take advantage of you.
    This is borne out not just in my personal experience, but in so many books and blogs I’ve read about boundaries and abusive marriages.

    Clock said,

    like the one where I shouldn’t get married for what I’ll get out of it–even though she writes articles that make it sound like I’ll end up an old bag with 200 cats, so hurry up and get married so I don’t end up miserable. Isn’t that getting something out of it? Isn’t that an impure motivation to not want 200 cats? Since when was God against us wanting a mate for ourselves, and not just to be a doormat servant-slave for another person?

    This kind of reminds me. I was reading stuff by single adult Christians. They quoted a book by married Christian authors who told singles a conflicting message, that went like this:

    1. Don’t be in a rush to get married. Take your time. You will make mistakes or appear desperate if you rush it

    — but a chapter later in the same book, they wrote: —

    2. Don’t take too long getting a mate [because single women have an expiration date].
    (They implied that most men won’t want to date a women over 35 or 40)

    So, the message they sent to single adults reading their book:
    Do NOT rush to get married, but DO rush to get married.

    Christians always give stupid, contradictory dating / marriage advice like that.

    Clockwork said,

    Candice Watters just told them to ditch their loved ones and hope the church magically helps out if their someday-husbands tell them to.

    Not to beat a dead horse since I discussed this above, but no, churches aren’t going to help you with your sick loved one.

    I have seen too, too many stories by church-attending Christians, who, when they feel sick, were in the hospital, dealing with an abusive spouse, nasty divorce, or a loved one was in bad medical shape, their church did nothing to help them when they approached their preacher, Sunday School friends, whomever, for help.

    Churches will fall all over themselves to give free turkeys at Christmas-time to poor families, to dig water wells for African orphans, or give free shoes to homeless men, but their attitude is, go take a long walk off a short pier if you are Average Jane or Average Joe who needs help with something.

    Churches think you should be totally self-reliant and never ask them for help. (Which totally goes against what the New Testament teaches.)

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  38. Re MarshaMiller MAY 17, 2015 @ 1:07 PM

    Your story about the organ player whose husband fell ill – yes, this is the type of testimony I’ve seen over and over again on spiritual abuse blogs the last few years.

    You can spend years serving at a church, but if you stop going for whatever reason, often, the church won’t phone you to see if you are okay. If you approach them asking for help, many of them refuse to.

    They expect YOU to serve THEM, but they get angry if you ask them for help, even if it’s just emotional support, or something like, can someone from the church mow your lawn while you are sick on your couch for a few weeks or whatever.

    I do not know why so many Christians are so reluctant to help others who have problems.

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  39. Part 3.
    @ Clockwork said,

    Isn’t that an impure motivation to not want 200 cats? Since when was God against us wanting a mate for ourselves, and not just to be a doormat servant-slave for another person?

    I sort of discussed this a bit above, but I wanted to re-iterate, I wish Christians would stop guilting or shaming singles who express a desire to get married!!

    Married Christians should stop lecturing singles that it’s “selfish” or a “wrong motive” to want to get married.

    There’s nothing inherently selfish or wrong with WANTING marriage, any more than it’s selfish or wrong to want to eat a cheese pizza for dinner tonight, or to take a continuing education class in auto repair, or to want to see the new Avengers movie.

    You’ll notice that Christians basically only ascribe the “check your motive” or “wanting something is selfish” view point when it is MARRIAGE under discussion.

    I’ve never seen these weenies scolding Christians over things such as:

    “Hey, it’s SELFISH for you to want to go take a French class at your local community college!”

    “You are thinking about mowing your front lawn this Tuesday? Well, that is just selfish!”

    Or, “Hey, WHY do you want to eat a grape lollipop, rather than have a piece of pecan pie? Check your MOTIVE!! Your grape candy desire is idolization, so repent.”

    Conversely, some Christians get alarmed over the shrinking marriage rates and then turn around and yell at single adults, “You should WANT to get married!!!”

    Oh okay, but when I freely admit yes, I am an unmarried adult who WANTS to get married eventually, these same jerks, or other Christian jerks, tell me, “But it’s selfish for you to want marriage.”

    They shame you for wanting marriage, but then also turn around and yell at you for supposedly not wanting it, because obviously, (they assume all this), if you had wanted marriage, you would have married years ago.

    There is nothing selfish or wrong about wanting to get married. The Christians who teach it’s selfish for a single to want marriage are obnoxious hypocrites.

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  40. Daisy says – “Yet, a lot of churches expect you to serve them! They expect you to show up regularly, mop the church floors, volunteer at functions, tithe, etc, but they don’t want to help you when you need it.”

    I can top that! An elder at our former church said we should turn over all our income to the church, and that we could ask them to give us the money when we needed it. Oh that was in addition to all the free labor-my husband was the youngest guy in the church without a title. They promised him a position (volunteer of course) if he would take on the repairs, like shoveling snow, mowing lawns, repairing, painting, fixing the roof. He is an administrator not a fix it guy! And as if he had lots of free time, he takes care of our house, his mother’s house, and does lots of things for the elderly neighbors. But don’t get caught doing yardwork on a Sunday, he got called on the carpet several times for that.

    BTW, the whole membership saga gives me the creeps. My two former churches were big on membership agreements, the second one I refused to sign and they effectively shunned me. No discussion on my objections. Both of our former churches keep calling my husband to lure us back in. Ha!

    Just to let you know: after a year of non-attendance, I joined First Baptist Church in Branford CT. It’s American Baptist, and there are no rules, no tithing, no membership agreements, the pastor is technology savvy and there are women who preach and teach! When I told my story (not in graphic detail) they were amazed that these churches still exist. I think this church is easier on the members because it’s in an affluent town and has a 200 year legacy. They do lots of outreach and mission work, and I joined the choir. This is great so far.

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  41. Preach it, Daisy!

    Don’t forget, if God hasn’t given you a spouse yet, then you must not be holy and sanctified enough yet for one, you yicky sinner you. But of course, the purpose of marriage is to sanctify you, you yicky sinner you. And if your husband beats you, you’re a yicky sinner who needs to be sanctified through a good beating. No matter what, you’re a yicky sinner who deserves whatever it is you’re going through. You deserve to be punished, er, I mean, sanctified. I mean, Jesus didn’t die for your sins or anything…. Now give us your money so you can voluntarily suffer some more to get holier faster.

    Evangelicals sound so Catholic sometimes. Seriously, the teaching that suffering sanctifies comes straight from Catholic theology. It is the entire basis of purgatory. Protestants merely have purgatory end on planet earth and not continue on in the afterlife. Sounds nit picky to me. A few verses, and the story of Job, are twisted to teach this doctrine of suffering for sanctification, and this becomes Gospel truth. But what is actually Biblical is that only suffering that is disciplinary for a specific sin (i.e., David’s adultery/murder) is sanctifying, since it corrects you from continuing in that same sin. Trust me, your conscience will know it when God is disciplining you for something specific. If you honestly don’t know why you’re suffering, then it isn’t because God is purging the yicky sin out of you. It is more likely a trial that proves before all of heaven and earth what your true character is.

    That is the entire point of the book of Job, but you’ll hardly ever hear that from the pulpit. You’ll usually hear that Job needed to be further sanctified so he can see God better, if they even preach on it at all. But real truth is that Job’s name was slandered in front of the angels, as well as God’s, because God was bragging about Job’s blamelessness. There was only one way to clear Job’s name, and that was to have him go through a trial where he couldn’t know the reason for his suffering. God’s appearance to him in a storm was NOT his sanctifying moment where he repents of some sin, but it was his final test–his last chance to literally curse God to his face if God didn’t tell him why he had to suffer. And he came out blameless.

    Yet Protestants/Evangelicals continue to treat Christians as though they must have some horrible sin in their life if they are suffering. They are just like Job’s friends. They accuse the saints like the devil does, even though it is likely that God is in fact bragging on them in heaven before all the angels. And because of their misinterpretation of the book of Job, they likewise continue to slander Job, just like the devil did.

    This is what I believe to be the root cause of why so many Evangelicals/Protestants look the other way when someone is suffering–whether it is a single person wanting to get married, or a married person trying to survive an abusive spouse, or someone who lost their job, or a loved one died, etc. etc. They think that if something bad has happened, then that person deserves it, and that they shouldn’t meddle with the cleansing God is doing. After all, they must be sinning. If they weren’t sinning, then life would be peachy for them. But if the suffering person is an unbeliever, then it’s okay to help them so they can know Jesus. If you already know Jesus, then you should have known better and deserve what is happening. We’ve all been unconsciously indoctrinated in this false teaching. Now, that doesn’t excuse the perpetrators who look the other way at suffering. I think it’s a convenient excuse to justify their cold-heartedness. But there’s no reason to hand these people convenient excuses. We need right teaching on this matter.

    Glad you dumped “Scott”. He didn’t deserve a nice lady like you. Funny, though, how complementarian teaching makes women out like their sole existence is to be their husband’s slave, but when you want to fulfill your “purpose” in life and get married so you can be your husband’s slave, then you’re suddenly wrong to want that. Perhaps I should have phrased my question to Candice Watters more carefully. Instead of saying, “I’d like the emotional support from a husband,” I should have said, “I desperately long to emotionally support a husband as a slaver, er, um, help meet and to meet his every whim. Do I pretty please have permission to do that at the same time as taking care of my mom?” Maybe Mrs. Watters wouldn’t have identified me as selfish if I’d put it more that way.

    Yes, I’d definitely be upfront with any man about my mom’s health. And I have been before. In fact, I’ve met a few men who admire what I do and wouldn’t mind being support of that as husbands, but sadly they lived in different states. Hard to get to know someone that way, and I’m not trusting enough to want to do a long distance relationship. I have to scan their back yard for dead bodies first. I just have to.

    I want a cheeseburger right now. Selfish me. 😀

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