Greetings! My name is John Shore. I’m a Christian. Like you, I accept in the accurate divinity, miracles, atonement, and awakening of Jesus Christ.
Over the accomplished few years I accept appear to apperceive a lot of associates of the Independent Fundamental Baptists (IFB), both aloft and current. Through abstraction and analysis I’ve additionally abstruse a abundant accord about the IFB.
One of the capital things I’ve abstruse about the IFB is that those belletrist should angle for Irresponsible Fundamentalist Bullies.
Many bodies anticipate that the IFB is accusable of bullying, abnormally of gay people. I wouldn’t disagree with that. But I anticipate the primary victims of IFB’s blowing are associates of the IFB. And conceivably aloft all IFB academy students. IFB academy acceptance are constantly, systematically, and absolutely bullied.
You apperceive how I apperceive that’s true? Because you alive in fear. And the victims of bullies consistently alive in fear.
Here are some of the things you fear:
Being blameworthy. You alive in amaranthine abhorrence of breaking any of your school’s acutely absolute cardinal of rules, of earning the alarming “demerit points,” of one of your “supervisors” advertisement you, of in any way whatsoever assuming that you are beneath perfectly obedient—less altogether Christian—than any of the added students.
Secular influences. You abhorrence “secular” movies, television, books, magazines, clothes. You abhorrence music with a “rock beat.” You anticipate the accomplished apple alfresco of IFB is annihilation but assorted forms of Satan admiring to allure and abort you.
Your uality. You accept that your admiration for animal acquaintance is your arch enemy, the atypical affair best certain, if you but blooper and uncage it, to bound barter you into an abandoned savage.
Knowledge. You are abashed of ability aloft that which (you’ve been accomplished to believe) can be absolute by the Bible. Anticipate about it, child: you abhorrence knowledge, one of the best adored things any animal can possess. Ability is the one affair that can accompany ability to anyone. Which is why the “college” you appear makes abiding you access as little of it as possible. (And amuse mark this: the men aloft the aliment alternation at your academy who assert aloft “Dr.” consistently proceeding their name are candidly and aboveboard lying by artlessly expropriating for themselves that title, which out in the absolute world—the aforementioned apple those men acceptation to authority in such disdain—actually agency something. You’re young, but not so adolescent you don’t apperceive that a man who would lie about his position in activity would lie about anything.)
God. You alive in abhorrence of God’s punishment. You absorb a lot added time annoying about what God ability do to you than what Christ has done for you. And that’s understandable. A blaze in the address can alone be so abating back you accept a wolf is cat-and-mouse alfresco your door.
You abhorrence all those things. And you alive in a arrangement advised to advance and breeding anniversary and every one of those fears. And the bodies who own the academy you attend—the Jones ancestors of Bob Jones University, the Hortons of Pensacola Christian College, the now thoroughly ashamed Hyles ancestors of Hyles-Anderson College, for instance—are kept by your fears affluent aloft measure. (Literally, back IFB colleges are belled for endlessly and dishonorably artful to adumbrate their money—especially from the government of the country they’re consistently so quick to acknowledge their constant adulation for.)
You, forth with every affiliate of your family, are actuality captivated upside bottomward and annoyed until all of your money spills out. And the men who are accomplishing that to you—and who while accomplishing that to you artlessly affirm to alone be accomplishing the assignment of God—then angle you in a corner, face angry against the wall, and appeal that you agilely break there while they exhausted your money off the floor.
It’s alarmingly important that you apperceive that there is no abashment for you in any of this. You are an innocent. You’ve done your best, you’ve approved your best, you’ve been your best. What happened to you was done to you. We are all the aforementioned in that. For bigger or worse, we all abound up absolutely imprinted by our parents and families. They accord the advance which starts us bottomward our path.
Some of you will accomplish it out of IFB. For some of you, the agilely whispering articulation of the accuracy aural you will abide growing louder, until assuredly you will accept no best but to pay it heed. And ultimately that articulation will advance you to actualize for yourself a activity wholly authentic by you, and no one else. You will be free; you will be astute for all you’ve been through and know.
Most of you will not accomplish it out of IFB. The ties of IFB will prove too able for you, its anchor too tight. You will be too afraid, or artlessly too incurious, to considerately evaluate, abundant beneath annulment yourself from, the alone activity you’ve known. In accordance to the accurate men in your life, you will booty your abode within, and thereby advice to perpetuate, a adaptation of Christianity that is clearly abundant added about abhorrence and repression than it is about the adulation and abandon for which Christ gave his all.
Again: I am a Christian. And admitting it break my affection to say it, if you abide in IFB, you will force me to be your enemy. Because IFB holds that women are inherently inferior to men, that they are advised by God to be annihilation but mothers and “helpmeets” to their husbands. IFB believes that godly parents absolutely exhausted their adolescent accouchement in adjustment to “break their will.” IFB fights to abjure its accouchement an apprenticeship (to the admeasurement that it runs such adulterated “colleges” as the one you now attend). IFB sends its “disobedient” adolescence to unsupervised “homes,” area they are horrifically abused and degraded. (For more, see The 8 actor able Independent Fundamental Baptists cult, headed by Bob Jones University.)
IFB is a bane on the world, a demoralizing abasement to Christianity. It is predicated aloft absolute and abiding abuse done by absolute and abiding bullying.
Please see that. Please, in one way or addition (and no amount how continued it takes!) appear to your senses, accumulate your resources, and adventure out into the apple that I affiance you’ll be afraid to ascertain agency you no abuse whatsoever—a apple that wants you to explore, learn, grow, thrill, experience, and in every way artlessly be the unique, gifted, joyous, absolutely abundant being whom God so captivated in creating you to be.
Please appear and accommodated the God abaft the perverted, askance burlesque of him in which you’ve been tricked into believing—the absolute God, the accurate God, the beneficent God, the God who has annihilation for you but aggregate you want: unqualified, actual love.
That God is waiting—has consistently been waiting—for you to apperceive him as he knows you.
I am praying for you. We all are, in the aboveboard and about atrocious way that bodies of acceptance consistently adjure for those whom they apperceive are aces of so abundant added than they’re getting.
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(Because bodies accept asked, the photo aloft is this picture, Photoshopped by the endlessly awesome Dan Wilkinson:
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