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Ep. 408 The Ten-Point Checklist When Abuse Happens

Ep. 408 The Ten-Point Checklist When Abuse Happens

Shows Main Idea – Abuse is one of the most common subjects discussed in our culture today. Knowing how to respond when someone abuses another person is vital, something every church and its members must become proficient at doing. In this episode, I walk through ten essentials about abuse. Though this treatment is not exhaustive, these ten things must be on every checklist so we can become more effective soul care providers for the abused and their abusers.

Show Notes

You may want to read:

Ensure that you click the links to read all that I have embedded in these Show Notes to gain valuable insight on this critical subject.

  1. Safety: Are you safe? You must be secure, including children. When David’s life was under threat, he fled. Do what you must do to ensure your safety.
  2. Labeling: After you have assured safety, you can talk about what is happening. You’re describing sin; what kind of sin is it? What is abuse? The word “abuse” has been elasticized to mean many different things, even things that are not abusive.
  3. Crime: Some abuse is not just sinful but is a crime. If a person breaks the law, you must report it.
  4. One-flesh: A spouse will say, “It’s her problem,” or “It’s his problem.” Regardless of what the issue is, there is a problem. There are no “his or her problems” in marriage but one-flesh problems. This truth also applies to those in the body of Christ. If one person says there is a problem, there is a problem that needs addressing.
  5. Hierarchy: There are no submission rules when one person is sinning against another. Hierarchies come tumbling down, and the mature ones step up and speak about the situation, even if they were submitted souls in the hierarchy.
  6. Consent: Do not consent to the abuse. The point of abuse is to make someone do what the abuser wants them to do by force. If you acquiesce, the abuser gets what they want, which is no motivation to stop.
  7. Counseling: Determine if conjoint or concurrent counseling is best. Depending on the nature of the abuse, it could be unwise to counsel the couple together. An abuser can manipulate the abused during the counseling and make their life worse afterward.
  8. Volition: Don’t give abusers a disorder label because you will make them victims of a supposed disease construct rather than free moral agents who choose to be abusive.
  9. Repentance: Prepare for the long haul. If an abuser asks for forgiveness, it does not mean he has repented. Forgiveness is part of what it means to repent, but not complete repentance. You must deal with the former manner of life, deep-seated beliefs, shaping influences, deceptive thought processes, and blind spots as you’re helping them put on new ways of thinking and behaving. Nothing but full repentance is acceptable.
  10. Accountability: If the abuser is not changing, the church must activate the church discipline and restoration process per the Matthew 18:15-17 principle.

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Call to Action

  1. Please read the embedded articles in these Show Notes for more information. These ten ideas are not an exhaustive treatment of this subject.
  2. Is someone abusing you? Are you safe? If not, what do you need to do to find safety?
  3. If someone is abusing you, please reach out to a competent friend today, sharing what is happening to you.
  4. Church leader, how are you envisioning and equipping your people about abuse? What is something you can do better?
  5. Does your church have a church discipline and restoration process?

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