A Cry For Justice

Awakening the Evangelical Church to Domestic Violence and Abuse in its Midst

The Scattering of the Lord’s Sheep by False Shepherds

When the visible church becomes corrupt and dominated by evil men, the righteous are scattered. The blind man healed by Jesus in John chapter nine was put out of the temple by the religious authorities — though he found the true Temple (Jesus) outside. Christ’s true people were persecuted by Rome in the centuries leading up to the Reformation and scores of true pastors were expelled from their pulpits in the days of the Puritans in England. This is no new thing and it is still happening today.

Many, if not most, of our readers here at ACFJ are survivors of abuse. Many of them have been members of a local church, only to be further abused by their church when they exposed the evil of the abuse they were suffering. The result? They are scattered. Some have been formally ex-communicated while others were put out through more “informal” methods. The result is the same. They are out, while the wicked abuser remains inside the “church.”

Here is a wonderful passage of Scripture that speaks comfort and hope to those who have been so sorely oppressed at the hands of people who claim to be of Christ. And it is also a sobering, fearful warning to such counterfeits and in particular to the false shepherds. Here it is for your encouragement:

The word of the LORD came to me:
Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel; prophesy, and say to them, even to the shepherds, Thus says the Lord GOD: Ah, shepherds of Israel who have been feeding yourselves! Should not shepherds feed the sheep? You eat the fat, you clothe yourselves with the wool, you slaughter the fat ones, but you do not feed the sheep. The weak you have not strengthened, the sick you have not healed, the injured you have not bound up, the strayed you have not brought back, the lost you have not sought, and with force and harshness you have ruled them.

So they were scattered, because there was no shepherd, and they became food for all the wild beasts. My sheep were scattered; they wandered over all the mountains and on every high hill. My sheep were scattered over all the face of the earth, with none to search or seek for them.

Therefore, you shepherds, hear the word of the LORD: As I live, declares the Lord GOD, surely because my sheep have become a prey, and my sheep have become food for all the wild beasts, since there was no shepherd, and because my shepherds have not searched for my sheep, but the shepherds have fed themselves, and have not fed my sheep, therefore, you shepherds, hear the word of the LORD: Thus says the Lord GOD, Behold, I am against the shepherds, and I will require my sheep at their hand and put a stop to their feeding the sheep.

No longer shall the shepherds feed themselves. I will rescue my sheep from their mouths, that they may not be food for them. For thus says the Lord GOD: Behold, I, I myself will search for my sheep and will seek them out. As a shepherd seeks out his flock when he is among his sheep that have been scattered, so will I seek out my sheep, and I will rescue them from all places where they have been scattered on a day of clouds and thick darkness. And I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries, and will bring them into their own land. And I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, by the ravines, and in all the inhabited places of the country. I will feed them with good pasture, and on the mountain heights of Israel shall be their grazing land. There they shall lie down in good grazing land, and on rich pasture they shall feed on the mountains of Israel. I myself will be the shepherd of my sheep, and I myself will make them lie down, declares the Lord GOD. (Ezekiel 34:1-15)

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9 Comments

  1. Sarah

    it’s so sad that the leaders are wise in their own eyes. They think they are right or are doing enough. When confronted in love, you are the problem or you hear crickets

  2. Sarah

    and this is so beautiful thank you

  3. sheisovercoming

    I am in tears reading this. Yes,false shepherds have scattered this sheep and her children. They tried to devour these sheep when she fled to them for protection. She and her children are still scattered and long so deeply for a true shepherd/flock. The shepherds covered themselves with fraud and tried to write themselves into a percentage of her Will -overriding her wishes for her children as Executor. She and her children were sick and virtually homeless at the time …with only a nice life insurance policy for her children. They then passed out a letter by hand accusing her of taking advantage of them, warning the congregation to not speak with her at all. She and her children have asked for their membership to be removed, but they have refuse without her repentance. These false shepherds turned out to be the ones who loosened their wild beasts to fed on these sheep. Thank you ACFJ for providing a sort of flock for these scattered sheep.

  4. Mark

    This scripture reading does not simply describe an unfourtnate situation that can be changed by the right work and understand. No, this is a description of reality we all must face as we live in this fallen world. These shepherds don’t reform, they never go away, they will always practice their selfish evil ambitions and actions. We who have suffered the abuse by these shepherds and their minions must accept this reality. No more wishing it was different because it is not.
    Our dream of something that never was is over. God in His true grace woke us from that dream and now we may see as He sees. Read these scriptures again and again, now scattered, beaten and abused we may see as our great Shepard sees.

  5. StandsWithAFist

    Amen, Ps. Jeff. The shepherds themselves have become selfish, stupid, narcissists.

    I am reminded of Amos 8:

    “Be certain of this, the time is coming,” says the sovereign Lord, “when I will send a famine through the land – not a shortage of food or water but an end to divine revelation!
    People will stagger from sea to sea, and from the north around to the east. They will wander about looking for a revelation from the Lord, but they will not find any.
    In that day your beautiful young women and your young men will faint from thirst.”

    This seems to be a picture of the hungry sheep, famished for true bread & living water, but the stupid shepherds of today do not & cannot feed the sheep. They can’t. They are fake. The shepherds do not lead them to true water; like crooked politicians they seek their own glory & the sheep are scattered.
    Why? They are too busy feeding themselves!
    And God Himself is having none of it.
    He is angry!! He will protect HIS sheep! HE will feed us & water us & protect us!
    Those false shepherds are hirelings, predators, Pharisees.
    Jesus gathers, Satan scatters.
    That tells me everything I need to know about the hirelings: they belong to Satan.

    The sheep belong to Jesus.

  6. woundedbychurch

    Pastors as a profession are accustomed to being in authority and overwhelmed by the needs and demands of their congregation. So they opt for the easy way out of a sticky situation – don’t take sides, listen, but don’t take action. What they see as empathy is harmful because evil is believed and the harm to the abused minimized. This course of action is better than telling the abused to stay in the situation and merely submit, but it still causes damage.

    • I agree, woundedbychurch.

      Welcome to the blog 🙂 You might like to check out our New Users Info page as it gives tips for how to guard your safety while commenting on the blog.

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