A Cry For Justice

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

A Victim-Silencing Abuser-Protecting Tactic of the Wicked – “An Evil ‘Pious’ Silence”

Let not those rejoice over me who are wrongfully my foes, and let not those wink the eye who hate me without cause. For they do not speak peace, but against those who are quiet in the land they devise words of deceit. (Psalm 35:19-20)

As we have written in other posts, it is very characteristic of evil people to use non-verbal means to communicate their abuse on others. One of these dastardly dark tricks is the evil man saying “I must not say anymore. I don’t want to gossip.” His intent with this false saintliness is to cover up, to hide truth, and to pressure others into being silent about evil as well. There is absolutely nothing saintly about such a person. He is a child of the darkness.

Let me illustrate more clearly how this works. Let’s say you are discussing some evil that has come to light. Perhaps the case of a church leader or member for instance whose hidden sin has become known, at least to some. Now, wicked people share this in common — they all lead secret lives, they dwell in hidden sin, they wear a falsely pious mask. So when some other cohort in darkness is threatened with exposure, they become very uncomfortable. And often they launch attempts to shut down any discussion, any light-shining exposure of such a fellow’s wickedness. (I have known some cases when we would have to insert “she” for “he” in our discussion here).

I have seen a couple of common means by which evil ones turn off the light of exposure —

  • “I just don’t think I should say anymore about this. I probably have already said too much.” This kind of serpent-like craftiness most typically comes right after the evil man has said something like, “I think you are guilty of unforgiveness.” Then, when asked to explain and expound on that accusation, the shutdown comes — “I just don’t think I can say anymore about this. I probably should not have said anything at all.” Having effectively sown seed of accusation, he now uses a sickening “holy saintliness” to let everyone know that further discussion of the subject would be sin.
  • Another way I have seen this same tactic used over and over again is in what I will call “Agenda Control.” This happens at church meetings or at denominational general assemblies. Some evil has occurred. Perhaps some notable pastor has been arrested and charged with molesting children. And right at the start of the meeting, the power-broker(s) stands up and says something like this: “Now, we do not want our meeting to become gossiping. We want to keep things positive and edifying. Here specifically is what we are here to discuss and we must stick to the stated agenda. If anyone wanders from it they will forfeit the floor.” So darkness reigns you see. Any opportunity for open, up-front exposure of truth is shut down.
  • Those in power in churches and other “Christian” organizations will use the same type of tactic to promote their own desires, to get the vote outcome they want, all the while making it appear like they have allowed everyone to have input. “No, we are not here tonight to discuss that issue. We are here to have this motion put before us and to vote.” Anyone who would attempt to point out how sinful use of power and control has been at work in the proceedings is immediately deemed ‘out of order’ and their right to be heard forfeited. “We must not say too much lest we slander a brother. You need to be silent.” That’s how the thing goes, you see.

Domestic abusers and their allies do these very things. They plant a seed of accusation against their victim, but when the victim or anyone else seeking justice begins to expose the evil, the wicked man works to shut down discussion. “Now, you are saying too much. You are gossiping. You don’t have enough facts to even bring these issues up. You need to follow my example and keep silent.”

The real problem among us is not so much GOSSIP, as it is NOT TALKING about evil working in our midst at all!

There have been many “Christian” books published on the evils of the tongue. Yes, the tongue can be set on fire by hell. But generally we have been taught wrongly about just what kind of person has such a tongue. We have been told that it is the victim who is bringing the crimes and evils of the abuser to light. Wrong! It is the abuser and power-lusting Diotrephes (see 3 John) who is speaking to shut down that victim.

In contrast to all of this hiding and darkness that is so typical of evil, we have the command of King Jesus given to us through His Apostle. Notice His rebuke of those who were keeping quiet about (tolerating the evil of) the wicked man:

It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that is not tolerated even among pagans, for a man has his father’s wife. And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you. For though absent in body, I am present in spirit; and as if present, I have already pronounced judgment on the one who did such a thing. When you are assembled in the name of the Lord Jesus and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus, you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord. Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. (1 Cor 5:1-7)

One final but very important point regarding all this. THERE COMES A TIME WHEN ANYONE HAVING KNOWLEDGE OF WICKEDNESS MUST SPEAK OUT. Even if that speaking out means standing up and speaking ‘out of order’ at a church meeting or other such setting. If denominational or church association leaders for instance will not provide an open platform at a general assembly or other such church meeting, then it is time to violate ‘rules of order’. Like the prophets and apostles of old, and like our Lord Himself, it is time to stand up in the temple and cry out “there is wickedness here!” And then spill the beans openly even while the ‘pillars’ are gnashing their teeth and trying to shout you down.

Oh, and one other final thing — take care that, if you should ever see such a person standing up to expose hidden evil — take care that you do not immediately regard them as some ‘troublemaker’. Many of the Lord’s chosen people have done some pretty strange things to call wickedness to account.


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Related posts: 

Abuse Without a Word — Nonverbal Abusive Communications

It Only Takes a Wink or a Glance to Abuse

Abusers Often Betray their Disguise in Subtle Ways we Must not Ignore




  1. Anon.

    “I must not say anymore. I don’t want to gossip.”

    I’ve said something like that. Because I felt guilty for saying anything at all. If you get used to not ever really saying anything to anyone, and all of a sudden some news/details of the abuse slips out, because a person can only repress and deny for so long before it leaks out here and there, and you’re horrified that you spilled the beans, so you look to scoop those beans back up again as quickly as possible and try to swear everyone into silence….. that they forgot what they’d heard and all.

    What is that called? A false belief or misunderstanding that basically we are to only say nice things about others and if we have not anything nice to say, we shut our mouths and keep it to ourselves. Because you otherwise feel guilty as though you’ve done wrong in letting the secret out by talking too much. Then you backtrack like mad and take it all back.

    But I think you’re talking about the baiting, luring, creating wisps of controversy, making things seem to be a certain way, manipulation, deception, and wheedling…..right?

    Spot on about the last part, in that the person who speaks up is usually seen as the troublemaker, someone just looking to cause problems, who is out-of-line, and needs to be shut down. I’ve been guilty of that, because a person is taught that silence is golden, etc.

  2. keeningforthedawn

    This comment may be a bit “off subject”, but I am asking for some wisdom and/or insight regarding another type of silence factor: What if the victim asks you to keep quiet, and NOT expose their abuser?

    • Anon.

      IMHO I think keeping quiet is best. It could otherwise spell more abuse, violence, harm, and danger for the victim. But that’s just my initial thought and suggestion.

    • Anonymous

      Seems to me that’s a very tough spot to put someone in, asking them to be silent after sharing that you’re being abused. I personally would not keep silent. But I “would handle with care”. And I speak from experience: My dear friend who was maid of honor in my wedding knew I was being abused. I was fearful and asked her to be silent. She was too fearful for my life to remain silent. She went to her husband, who is an elder in my church ( I was living out of state at the time ), and that is what started the ball rolling. To this day my ex does not know anything about that. So I believe my dear friend took the right course of action.

  3. Anonymous

    Thank you for this Pastor Crippen. It’s full of stunningly beautiful truth!

    It reminds me of courtroom proceedings depicted on TV that force the person on the witness stand to answer a question with a yes or no answer even though doing so conveys the matter in a completely different light, which may end up being the OPPOSITE of the truth.

    My dad did something like addressed in your post. When my sister and I would argue in front of him he’d let her say whatever she wanted to for as long as she wanted to but AS SOON AS I started to defend myself, he told me to shut up. I learned to hate myself and felt that I didn’t have a right to stand up for myself. I didn’t understand until I was in my forties what had taken place. My dad and sister have the same nature and are like-minded. When I was so broken and depressed in my mid-teens that I had to move out, (from the frying pan into the fire) I was shocked at what I saw when I went back to visit a year later. My sister was in charge of my dad and one other sibling that lived there. Dad was like a child, and asked me why this sister needed to have only name brand clothes and money for ski trips and weekend spas. (I had earned my own money by babysitting, cleaning houses, paper routes etc. and rarely asked him for money and only shopped off the clearance racks) . I had NO IDEA as it was completely out of my range of understanding as taught to me by the church and by psychology. What was more shocking to me was that dad gave it to her! Whatever she wanted, and she didn’t have to do anything to earn it. (I had been expected to clean the house, which I did, and it was considered the least I could do to have a roof over my head when many of my siblings were homeless.) She bragged to me that dad and sibling would clean the house and buy special foods for her before her friends would come over.

    These evil minded people deceive others but are they themselves deceived in turn by the tie that binds them – their father the devil. They infiltrate institutions and governing bodies to set up systems like you’ve described in this post Jeff, and people who are fair-minded and truth-seeking but unaware / forced to pretend that all people have a conscience, get manipulated into supporting this corrupt ruling body, and after a time the few who opposed it are ousted and no one even realizes that the system in place is evil and goes AGAINST God and his people! Those who are new see the projected version of godly leadership– it looks like everyone is in agreement and working together-so they relax into the lie and when doubts arise they blame themselves or when they tentatively bring it up they are quickly put in their place by tactics described above. Can we see how easily this is done because most of us were raised in environments like this and conditioned to “behave?”

    When some of us finally wake up and absolutely refuse to play their games, we usually end up leaving or being thrown out. If we refuse to leave or there are just enough of us left to stand up against evil, the end result will look like what you see at Pastor Crippen’s church, a small number of genuine believers with many battle scars staunchly keeping the wolves out while defending and providing a sweet, soft and safe place for God’s true children–and a place for them to grow.

    • standsfortruth

      Very well said and true Anonymous.
      The more I embraced the truth, the less I had in common with the false church until they finally cast me out,- for standing up for myself.

  4. YouRworthy

    The disappointment in my fellow believers often had me wondering where is their God? If you encourage women in particular to speak up, I don’t recommend it unless you have “muscle” in the flesh behind you. I did, I didn’t and you suffer alone. My God will never bless traumatic mind control practices or the lies of those who participated in this and cover it up. Wonderful article and perception for a man, Lol. Thank you.

  5. Bj

    I would add to:
    “if you should ever see such a person standing up to expose hidden evil — take care that you do not immediately regard them as some ‘troublemaker’.”
    nor gaslight or discredit them but support them.

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