Oppression, in a Christian context, does not mean covering sin, or bearing the consequences of another's sin "till death do us part." That, in fact, would not be loving--if this life is his only opportunity for repentance and eternal life. Responding to oppression means resisting in a way that exposes and addresses sin. It means praying and living against one's own tendencies or desire to be a savior and turning to the Savior.
In a relationship with a controlling individual, there is a lot of guilt because that individual has a lot of rules. Not only do the rules change capriciously, there are real punishments associated with breaking each and every rule. The person in power controls which rule is most important in any given moment and determines when, how, why, and what kind of punishment applies whether the rule was spoken, unspoken, real or imagined.
We must be very careful how we coach, teach, and encourage confession and forgiveness in imbalanced relationships.
There's a saying I use in counseling: "Show me the money." It's simple: tell me who benefits from an action or choice, and I can tell you who's manipulating a situation, especially in an imbalanced relationship where one person uses power and control for himself. Who benefits when your husband gets angry? He does. Why? … Continue reading Show Me the Money!
Compare biblical misunderstanding with Amnesty International's Report on Torture (New York: Farra, Strauss, and Giroux), 1973 following the Vietnam War. Albert Biderman, a psychologist, studied the methods foreign armies used to extract false confessions from prisoners of war. You may be surprised at the similarities.
If it doesn't look like Jesus, sound like Jesus, act like Jesus, it's not Jesus. When we see selfish ambition and envy, we know we are dealing with satanic drivers--the same motivations that drove Lucifer to sin against God.
Where sin is involved, we should not be surprised but, instead, should expect the following responses. It is only by God's grace and the knowledge of Jesus Christ that we run to Him when we sin.
Last week I addressed, The Cleaner: the idea that women feel the need to clean up after, or remove the consequences of, their husbands failure and sin. Additionally, sinful behavior is perpetuated when churches define a wife, or "helper" as someone who:1) Prevents her husband from sinning2) Equates pleasing a husband with pleasing God. https://dg.imgix.net/she-is-me-snbdvfjz-en/landscape/she-is-me-snbdvfjz.jpg?ts=1498581304&ixlib=rails-4.1.0&fit=crop&w=2000&h=1050 … Continue reading The Helper
When is the last time someone called out sinful behavior in front of you? It happened at our house yesterday--it's a normal part of life. If that's a one-sided conversation at your house, something's wrong. James says so. James says, "if you show partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as … Continue reading James Calls It!
So when we clean or cover up another's sin and remove consequences and the opportunity/need for repentance, we are not serving them. We may be serving ourselves without realizing it. We are not working with God, but against Him.