Imagine this scenario:
You see sin in the church from leaders. You make a loving confrontation in obedience to God (Galatians 6:1; James 5:19). Suddenly, your pastor who you love and have known for years calls you into a meeting and proceeds to tell you horrendous and degrading insults about yourself even to the point that you are weeping. The abusive and cruel treatment leaves you feeling confused, condemned and unloved.
After attempts at the Matthew 18 process clearly do not work, you tell others the truth of the slander that you have experienced from the pastor so that they themselves will not suffer the same way as you. You tell them the direct quotes of what was told to you by the pastor. You only speak the truth. Suddenly, you become the bad guy and are yourself labeled a “slanderer”, “divisive” and are told to “never judge”. You are blacklisted and “de-friended” (as if that was a word) by the people at the church.
What is going on here? Who is the abuser? The pastor or the one exposing the abuse? Is slander telling the truth or telling a falsehood?
It is concerning that today many pastors twist scriptures and abuse the sheep. It is very sad.
Do you have any feedback? Was it slander when the Apostle John exposed Diotrophes in 3 John 1? What is slander? Why is there so much confusion and uncertainty about this today in our culture? Do you think that this could be a tactic of control and abuse from false teachers in order to silence people?
Is it hating our enemies to expose abuse or cruelty? Are we to turn a blind eye to all sin and falsehood in the church in an effort to “love our enemies”?
Is it possible to love our enemies and pray for them while exposing their tactics at the same time?
Would love to hear your thoughts.
Diotrephes and Demetrius
9I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loves to have the preeminence among them, receives us not.
10Therefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he does, speaking against us with malicious words: and not content with that, neither does he himself receive the brethren, and forbids them that would, and casts them out of the church.
11Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that does good is of God: but he that does evil has not seen God.
12Demetrius has good report of all men, and of the truth itself: yea, and we also bear witness; and you know that our witness is true.
“Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” (Isaiah 5:20)
Pastor Chris Lawson on confronting abusive leaders: