Category Archives: Spiritual Abuse

Proof texting 3: Touch Not the Anointed

This is an excellent article that addresses a commonly misunderstood Biblical passage whose misapplication can have disastrous implications.

The Question of Authority and Anointing by Lois E. Gibson

Linked with the author’s permission.


Proof Texting Part 2: Women May Not Teach Men

They Permitted  No Woman to Teach a Man

Years ago, I was encouraged to consider teaching at church. To be honest, the last thing I wanted to do or felt qualified to do was teach. I had so many gaps in my own knowledge and understanding. Nonetheless, the encouragement persisted and I relented. Initially, I gave too-long ice-breakers at the weekly women’s Bible study, but eventually worked myself into facilitating a women’s class on Sunday morning. It grew and then evolved into a gathering of young mothers during the week.


Controversy has never been far from me and this circumstance was no exception. It came time to select new teaching materials.  We wanted to use a book titled, And Then I Had Kids, that was written by a Christian woman from another denomination. My selection had raised a few eyebrows among leadership not so much for content as origin.

When I brought the issue to the group, I was dumbstruck when told the following: Michele, the leadership can’t be sure what you are teaching because they cannot sit in  your classes. The bewilderment had to have shown on my face because the woman continued. Men cannot be taught by women. This was based upon a scripture from 1 Timothy2.

1 Timothy2: 11Let a woman£ learn in silence with full submission.
12I permit no woman£ to teach or to have authority over a man;£ she is to keep silent.
13For Adam was formed first, then Eve; 14and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor. 15Yet she will be saved through childbearing, provided they continue in faith and love and holiness, with modesty.

The incomprehensibility of this statement caught me completely off guard. But you know what, this woman’s observation was not without merit. Leadership never did attend my class to learn firsthand what went on in our study. Instead, they abolished the Sunday morning women’s class without explanation and mandated that an Adult Sunday school class would take its place –taught by a man. We had no say, no voice, no choice in the matter.

I do not wish to refute these perspectives at this point, but I do want to show that SOME Christians do believe such things based upon a single passage of scripture. It is an excellent example of the dangers of “proof texting.”

Proof texting: A Dangerous Form of Myopia



To the detriment of the Christian faith, the Bible has long been used to keep battered wives in silent submission, abused children cowering in compliance, and even some pro-lifers off the sidewalks. Did you know, according to some, the Bible permits abortion, child abuse, and wife-beating ? Scripture is used to convince people to cooperate with evil– all in the name of obedience to God.


Many years ago, I helped to set up a church library. Lots of donations were made to the effort and while sorting the contributions, I came across a book about a wife’s responsibility to obey her husband. While I am a very ardent supporter of those things with which I agree,  I also am not wired for blind obedience to anyone or anything I believe is seriously misguided or worse– just plain wrong.

I possess a choleric–melancholy temperament — a complex combination defiance and compliance, task and relational orientation, introvert and extrovert–which made me very curious about the advice the author might give about navigating disagreements with an “authority.” ( )

I could not have been more shocked or outraged. Complete obedience was expected, because, according to the author, the husband’s authority was God-given and complete. If he should ask his wife to have an abortion –even if it went against her conviction that it was murder—she should submit. God would absolve her of any guilt as the decision and responsibility fell to him! Her duty was to be a good soldier and do as she was told.The basis for such a claim was the following passage from the Book of Ephesians.

Eph5:22 Wives, be subject to your husbands as you are to the Lord. 23For the husband is the head of the wife just as Christ is the head of the church, the body of which he is the Savior. 24Just as the church is subject to Christ, so also wives ought to be, in everything, to their husbands.

How could you possibly, as a good Christian, argue with this? It does say to be subject “in everything.” If you cannot argue with such a perspective, you are in danger.

More, much more to come…..