The REVEAL Library: Re: Quiet around here...

Subject:      Re: Quiet around here...
From: (Catherine Hampton)
Date:         1996/11/30
Message-Id:   <57oi06$>
[More Headers] wrote:

: One of the hardest things to overcome was that verse ICC hammers
: into your head: "There is a way that seems right to a man, but
: in the end it leads to death." This makes it hard to trust or
: listen to your instincts; it can make you feel like everything
: you think or feel is wrong.

I don't much care for "me too" posts, but -- bravo! I think you hit on one of the hardest things most of us face on coming out. And this isn't just from the ICC itself -- I struggled with this for =years= after leaving the Crossroads movement.

In its proper context and perspective, that verse is absolutely right. There is such a thing as spiritual deception. But in the movement this verse was used to destroy our confidence in the voice of our own consciences and to render us dependent on other people to decide what God's will was for us and our lives. It destroyed the boundary between ourselves and other people. It left us unable to think for ourselves, learn from our mistakes and the mistakes of others, and grow in our understanding of God and His Will.

I'm reminded of something Ed Powers said in his February 27, 1994 sermon to the Indianapolis Church of Christ, the sermon he gave on his "new convictions" about the Bible, serving God, and the ICC. He noted that the rigid, top-down control exerted by ICC leaders destroyed faith and growth because none of his Bible study, or that of others in the movement, was ultimately of any use. It could not be the basis of change in their lives or the life of their church. Every doctrinal detail was determined by the leaders in LA, and no one in the local church could add any insights of his own.

Certainly it is critical for all of us to realize we are fallible and can make mistakes. But in my experience with the movement, most of us are more likely to have gone to the opposite extreme. Instead of thinking we can never be wrong, we think we can never be right. Of course, if we can never be right, if our own judgment is always faulty, we have no basis for criticizing what a leader tells us or teaches.

So perhaps it isn't surprising that false teachers try so hard to destroy the critical, reasoning capacities of their students. When what you are teaching can't stand up to scrutiny, you'd better get the focus of attention off of it and onto something else. :(


©1997 by Catherine Hampton <>. All rights reserved.

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