Most probably you would reply something like: Well, dude (or dudess), you certainly have a very fertile imagination and are very entertaining. But why dont you back to the funny farm that you obviously escaped from? Im sure the other inmates and the doctors there miss you.I am chosen by God by direct private divine revelation to me, and I am especially equipped, enabled and empowered by Him to be a person whom you must fear, respect and obey.
Therefore you must become part of a select group of people and provide income for me and maintenance expenses for my organization and helpers I hire to assist me.
Your failure to join this group and pay me ten per cent of your income each and every week will result in your being cursed by God. I have revived and reworked the defunct Old Testament tithe concept to apply to me. Remember, I have a direct communication line to God that no one else has and what I say and teach is to be obeyed without question.
In addition, you must formally join my group and come to each and every meeting. You must also obey without question, myself and my helpers. Failure to do so will cause you to lose your group covering. Since Im especially qualified by God Himself, you must accept this concept.
In my Godly wisdom I have revised the biblical reasonings for assembling as stated by Paul, the apostle and have provided my own. Instead of provoking one another to love and good works and exhorting one another, you must listen to me expound on my divinely communicated teachings every time you assemble. You will sit in reverent silence.
Although the Bible verse in Hebrews 13:17, is badly mistranslated by all translators I insist that the mistranslation be devoutly observed and that you obey me and my assistants in everything.
To make it short, I am your new mediator and intercessor between God and man and you will pay me a tithe of your income so Ill have one too. And so I can pay my divinely appointed assistants (they need an income too) and for the building and equipment. If you dont God will curse you.
You will covenant with my organization so youll have its covering (regardless of what Jesus taught about covenanting). If you dont, God will punish you and the devil will get you.
You will attend, by assembling in my building or my designated place of assembling every time I open the doors or designate another place of assembling. If you fail to do so, you are being disobedient to Gods commandments. While you are in attendance, you will listen to my interpretations of what I, or my assistants, think the Bible says.
You will, without questioning, obey me, your leader (and my assistants) in whatever I (or them) say or do. Failure to do so makes you in rebellion against Gods appointed and anointed authority.
OK, it should be clear that we are predisposed to act and react in certain ways in certain situations. Using our native intelligence we will attempt to avoid those situations that bring out the worst of our fallen human nature. At least, I hope so.Professor Zimbardo has stated: I now believe that special something is the dramatic transformation of human nature, not by Jekyll-Hyde chemicals but rather by the power of the situation. He further states: ...the value of the Stanford Prison Experiment resides in demonstrating the evil that good people can be readily induced into doing to other good people within the context of socially approved roles, rules, and norms, a legitimizing ideology, and institutional support that transcends individual agency.
Of the 10 Lessons Learned From the Stanford Prison Experiment, Lesson 5 is most revealing: Good people can be induced, seduced, initiated into behaving in evil (irrational, stupid, self-destructive, antisocial) ways by immersion in total situations that can transform human nature in ways that challenge our sense of the stability and consistency of individual personality, character, and morality (Lifton, 1969).
***Writing in the Nov. 26, 2004 issue of Science, Professor Susan Fiske and graduate students Lasana Harris and Amy Cuddy contend that many forms of behavior, including acts of great evil, are influenced as much by authority figures, peer pressure and other social interactions as by the psychology of the individual.
Fiske and colleagues drew their conclusions from 25,000 studies involving 8 million participants, which explain how factors, ranging from the stress of war to the expectations of superiors, can combine to cause ordinary people to commit seemingly inexplicable acts.
1. Biblical illiteracy is by far the main culprit. How many have read through the Bible from Genesis to Revelation at least one time? Biblical illiteracy is something that each and every one of you can wipe out in a year or two. Start reading in Genesis and keep going until you read the last page of Revelation and then start the process all over again. Quit trying to read a meaning into the Biblical text, and instead, let the Bible speak to you. Stop along the way in your reading and consult Hebrew and Greek references and read commentaries at least 200 years old. Please do your part to wipe out biblical illiteracy! As Nike says, Just Do It!
If it wasnt for biblical illiteracy the following problems would not be running rampant among those who name the name of Christ:God is our Creator, our CEO and our One and Only spiritual Head. He knows what the effect of the fall, as recorded in Genesis, has done to us human beings. He knows that when we put other human beings into positions of hierarchical authority over other human beings that it will adversely affect our behavior towards those we deem to be lesser in authority. Thats why Jesus is our Shepherd, i.e., our Head. Only Jesus, not a man, or a group of men, or an organization.
Yes, we have authority systems which God has put in place for the benefit of society as a whole. The historical foundational source for those authority systems is the Bible. Romans chapters 12-15 deal with the subject of our lifestyle and conduct before God, self, the rest of the body, all men, government, neighbors and the weak believer. This is the subject of the article Government Authority And Power In America: Good Or Evil in which I discuss how government authority has biblically established power from legal procedures and processes that execute biblical justice by military, judges and a priestly leader.
***The true ekklesia of God is a family, a family within a community, a community which is a subset of a society, and acts like a family towards other members of the family. The elders/overseers/shepherds/pastors/bishops (all one and the same) are simply older members of the spiritual family whose track record indicates that they are trustworthy and usually, but not always, give good solid practical and spiritual advice to the younger members, especially those younger deacons [read: workers, i.e., those who have youth on their side for the energy to do the things needed to maintain a family] in order to help guide their lives on the right spiritual track. Thats why there is always a plurality of eldersthere is safety in a number of counsellors.
Jesus is our only Shepherd. Period. The elder/shepherd/pastor/overseer/bishop that we have recognized as such are really only under-shepherds. They are recognized by the majority in the group, by the corporate giftings of the individual members. They are not self-appointed. Thats where their authority comes from. What they have to say is authority only so long as those in the group accept their collective mature outlook and wisdom.
If they fail to display maturity and wisdom in some matter, then the group will simply not acknowledge what they have to say about it. If you have a problem with that then study the life of Paul the apostle. His authority as an apostle was accepted as such only by those who accepted him as truly being sent by God. There were quite a few in the New Testament that did not accept his alleged apostolic authority, because they didnt accept him as being sent by God to them. They had that freedom to reject him because in their twisted theological devices they thought that Paul did not state biblical values! We have that same freedom but we exercise that freedom to accept or reject the wisdom and advice of elders if they dont adhere to and reflect biblical values!
***... the person behind the pulpit or otherwise attempting to convey to you that they are a legitimate spiritual authority is not really a spiritual authority because only God is and Jesus Christ is your only true spiritual authority and you are to recognize Him as your CEO and spiritual Head, and no other. You are in a bad cultural and social experiment whose foundations are based upon the shifting sands of human desires and emotions and errant traditions, and those others who also name the name of Christ as their Lord and Saviour are in reality your brothers and sisters in the Lord and are just like you. So would you please stop crying about the abuse you continue to suffer in this nightmarish situation and say OK, lets get out of that situation and obey God and His Christ and meet together as Christian families meeting together as a Christian family.
2. Teachings that there is authority in custom and tradition, therefore the institutional church system has authority. This is badly flawed logic as the truth is that there is only authority in custom if the majority in society finds the custom to be good, i.e., beneficial, utilitarian, valuable and desirable. Then it may be assigned authority by the majority. Or it may not.
3. An eyes wide open altered state of consciousness. Here is a quote from the book Prophets And Prophecy in which I explain the problem of an eyes wide open altered state of consciousness:
4. Teachings that God will curse you, the devil will kill you, steal from you and destroy you, that you are being disobedient to God and you are in rebellion against God if you dont tithe, have a covering, assemble at a building at pre-set times, and obey everything alleged leaders think, say and do.
Ive discussed in several articles the unscriptural practices and methods used to manipulate, intimidate and control untold millions of believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. I discuss this fully in the article Tithe, Covering, Assembling, Obey Them That Have The Rule Over You.
Whats the bottom line here? God will curse you, the devil will kill you, steal from you and destroy you, you are being disobedient to God and you are in rebellion against God.(a) You are taught that you must pay a tithe to your local church.
All negatives from powerful spiritual sources: God Himself three times and the devil once. If you dont tithe, if you dont have their covering, if you dont attend their church and if you dont believe everything they tell you and dont obey everything they tell you to think, say and do, then you will suffer severe loss in every area of your life. According to their fear methodology, that is.
5. The battered bride syndrome. We assume personal guilt for our abuse, telling others It isnt all bad!and feel terrible if we have failed to receive the attention that comes with our daily physical beating. Within the institutional church system, we prove that by continuing to willingly subject ourselves to a source of pain, hurt and continual, constant grieving.
6. The Stockholm syndrome, is closely related to the battered bride syndrome.
Stockholm syndrome refers to a group of symptoms among those who suffer physical, sexual or psychological abuse or any combination of these. Its a defense mechanism to avoid fear, terror, violence and physical and mental pain. Its a survival strategy and a common phenomenon. Its also an expression of gratefulness to the abuser for providing an escape from threats of death or violence, from the abuser or from another source.
There is an emotional bonding with the abuser, and they will seek the abusers approval. They will also come to depend on that person or organization for their security and purpose of existence. This state of mind can come about in as few as three or four days. They will then come to have feelings of caring and affection for the abuser and will resent anyone who attempts to get them out of their situation. As things progress they lose their personal identity in favor of identifying with their abuser, coming to incorporate the abusers perspective regardless of how ridiculous it is.
Any small token of approval, appreciation, acceptance or recognition is valued by them and considered to be an exchange of mutual affection between the two parties. After this mindset is firmly instilled by the person abused, they will resist, refuse and renounce any efforts by others to attempt to free them from their abusive situation.
The longer the period of association with the abuser the stronger the emotional bonding becomes. The reason this happens is that the abused comes to know the abuser as a human being with their own set of strengths, weaknesses, goals and purposes. The abusers position is eventually rationalized by the abused as being a just one and the abused denies that his abuser is at fault. The need to survive overwhelms their clear and logical thinking. This denial of factuality contributes greatly towards lessening of feelings of terror, fear and helplessness.
This behavior has been termed as a survival strategy in extreme conditions by mental health professionals. Because of the continual threat to physical and/or mental survival there is an onset of absolute helplessness with all loss of hope. Because of the ongoing terror/trauma, they then abandon all support systems and actually prefer the isolation that comes with being exclusively with the group that abuses them.
Psychologically they must give up their previously held value systems and begin to believe that their very survival will only come about when they totally surrender to the will of their abuser.
As human beings, we are motivated by a strong survival mechanism, which includes avoiding mental and physical pain, having hope and meaning in our lives accompanied by a sense of significance and security and we seek the approval, appreciation, acceptance and recognition of others.
All of these motivations play a part in shaping our behavior at various times, but in an abusive situation all of these factors come into play at the same time and help to strengthen our bonding to our abusers. There is a tremendous amount of fear, curiously accompanied by a sense of compassion, love and empathy towards the abuser.
Those individuals who have a strong understanding of the Bible and who they are in God and whose faith in God comes from studying and understanding the Bible are much better equipped to handle those abusive situations by retaining their identity in Christ. These are the ones who will seek ways to get out of the abusive situation. To put it another way, those who are biblically illiterate and dont have a biblical understanding of who they are in Christ, and what Gods eternal purpose for us human beings is, are more likely to fall prey to the entrapment of man-made systems of unscriptural bondage.
7. The grieving process. This is an continual process because of the constant abuse and subsequent sense of loss in individuals in an abusive place. (Youll also have to deal with it when you come to your logical senses and leave that place.)
8. Dealing with (additional) post-trauma stress syndrome/disorder problems. Many individuals are struggling with PTSD from other events in their lives. Additional stress for these individuals is a tremendously heavy load to deal with.
9. An antichrist environment. The self-appointed leaders of these institutional organizations are both placing themselves in place of Christ and against Christ which is the meaning of antichrist.
(1) Stay and continue to suffer pain, hurt, humility and increasing grieving. And be prepared for the increasing negative feelings that come with time.
(2) Leave that place and start your own little private kingdom, utilizing the tricks, tactics and techniques of those self-proclaimed leaders who inflicted so much suffering in your life. Note that to attempt to work your way up the hierarchical ladder will be ineffective. Regardless of how high up you go, if you have even just one person above you, you will still be in a very vulnerable place. You will have to be the chief kahuna (Hawaiian for witch doctorfitting, huh?)
For those especially aggressive Jezebels this is the desired route. I obviously dont recommend it for those who truly love God and His Christ.
(3) Get yourself and your family out of that hell hole. This is the most difficult and least utilized methods of alleviating the pain. Because of the reasons stated above.
God, Jesus Christ, the Bible are not reflected in human life.
Evil abuse by good people in authority in prison and church.
Does Anybody Out There Hear Me?
Written to a fellow member of the spiritual family of Christ.
If you dont understand what Ive said, or refuse to acknowledge the truth of it then go back to your fake church and seek fake comfort there. Others wont be able to help you if you wont help yourself.
Americans religious faith in self and church, not Christ. Americans religious faith is in self and church, not Christ, the Bible or God as biblically illiterate people obey flesh strongholds not the Holy Spirit.