- Paperback: 253 pages
- Publisher: Zondervan (July 1, 1993)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0310532922
- ISBN-13: 978-0310532927
- Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.5 x 7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 4 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 20 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,286,456 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Churches That Abuse Paperback – July 1, 1993
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It is a well-written book and well worth picking up a used copy for your library. I plan on buying 5 extras to have on-hand.
To say that I "love" this book is a bit of an overstatement. The truth is, many things in this book are quite upsetting! Nevertheless, I believe it's a must-read for every Christian, and that's why I give it five stars.
Christianity has survived and thrived between the publishing of this work and 2014, but just as the power of God to save and to restore broken lives and to heal wounded hearts remains unchanged, the devil continues to work to damn people to hell and to steal, kill, and destroy. Most tragically, it is not only through pagan religions and cults that Satan works. He will often use so-called churches, some of which are actual and true Christian churches which happen to have veered off course. The devil, after all, will use any means he has to damage people and to keep human beings from God.
This book is easy to read. I read it in a few days and it can be read in one day. But it is very painful reading because of the extreme and oftentimes bizarre cases of abuse, manipulation, and hurtfulness demonstrated by “pastors” (I use quotes because while at least some of the leaders in the examples cited by the author were ordained ministers, they were far from shepherd-like in the way they treated the wounded and abused people whose testimonies comprise the bulk of this book).
Most chapters are detailed descriptions of how lives were turned upside down by abusive churches with sobering and blunt insights regarding why and how otherwise intelligent, educated, and well-meaning Christians can end up as victims of deceit, and the warnings offered by the author – that any Christian can fall for such lies and that there is always the danger of Christians, however well-intentioned, to begin to view their own statements/stances as directly from God and hence, disagreement as disobedience against God – are convicting. It is good for the Christian to have firmly rooted beliefs (based on the truth of Scripture) but it is not good to treat those who disagree with contempt or as if their disagreement was tantamount to an affront against God Himself.
Parishioners and pastors alike can benefit from this book – the former so they can avoid being victimized and the latter so they will not allow power, authority, and trust inflate their egos and exploit the parishioners they serve.