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Spiritual Abuse Titles Spiritual abuse is the mistreatment of a person who is in need of help, support or greater spiritual empowerment, with the result of weakening, undermining or decreasing that person's spiritual empowerment.

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Old 05-19-2015, 09:58 AM   #1
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Default Stephen Kaung on Abusive Churches

From another thread, Stephen Kaung has some great insight on abusive leaders and churches ...

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Well, first of all, I think, from what you have said about The Church of Bible Understanding that you come out from; I think probably there are a few things. One of course is, it may have begun as something from the Lord, but gradually you find that it has changed its course and basically the reason, as you’ll find in all these cultish or semi-cultish groups, you’ll find that oftentimes it began well, but then some person began to dominate the whole thing. In other words, instead of holding fast Christ as the head, a man became the head and when that thing happens, invariably the thing began to move, to go astray. I mean, that is the history you can find in every, what we call cult or semi-cult, these things. Of course some may have begun wrong from the very beginning, but many of them began well. It is of the Lord and it seems to be used of the Lord, but then somebody took the place of Christ and then when that happened, you know it always went astray.

So, when one person became the authority; and I think it begins, it began about 20 years ago, is that it? Roughly, that was the time that a lot of these began, it is a kind of reaction. In the beginning it was a time when all these young people wanted to be free and then out of that comes the young people who wanted to go in the opposite direction and wanted to find authority. It is around that time. First of all you find this Jesus movement and things like that, and subculture began to develop and people just wanted to be free with no authority, no organization, nothing, throw away everything, but then a reaction came in and as a result, out of that you find the different groups, for instance, like The Children of God, is one of them.

And it began as a person who took authority and young people just reversed their feeling because they are looking for an authority and somebody came and became that authority. The result is the people who are in that group begin to loose their individuality. They cannot make any decisions because they are not supposed to and they don’t want to, because if someone can make the decision for you, it takes all the responsibility away from you and that is easy. And the result is, you find that it began to aggravate.

Now, somebody took authority and then the others began to submit to the authority and really desired for that authority and that authority became more authoritative, until finally you find that if any person, no matter how spiritual he is, if he should take the place of Christ, sooner or later wrong teaching will come out. You know, it can’t be avoided.

He will teach something that is extra-spiritual or scriptural and the result you find is: instead of real spiritual, it is a kind of pseudo-spiritual. He tried to maintain a form of spirituality: ‘Now, if you do certain things then you are spiritual.’ You strive for spirituality and yet it is a kind of pseudo-spirituality in two ways: one is, you become more and more legalistic; it is bound to be that way. You become more and more legalistic, you do certain things and you are “alright”.

The other is, you become less and less human, you cannot be a normal person any more. They take the abnormal, abnormal as spiritual, so if any one tries to be normal, you will be considered as “not spiritual”. That kind of feeling will be created. It is inevitable. Every cult or semi-cult are all that way and furthermore you will find that the teaching invariably will be: “This is the Lord’s best, the only place, if you leave it you’re finished” and that kind of thing is brainwashing.

After you have been brainwashed for a few years, whenever you leave that group, you are spiritually wrecked. I have met people completely wrecked. That guilty feeling is always there, because they fell, they have left God’s will, and now they are finished. I’ve met people like that, who began to see some things wrong and they come out of it and yet the effect upon them is so strong, they’ve never been able to shake it off and they are a misfit everywhere. They cannot fit in anywhere else, they just become a misfit. It’s very sad, it’s very, very sad. Some people came out and saw what is wrong and yet when you talk to them you can see that they are still bound. It’s very difficult.

So, in one sense I feel that what you have experienced, you are the few lucky ones; because many people are wrecked for life. There is no way humanly speaking, it is a very sad story. Unless, by the grace of God, people begin to see that the whole thing is pseudo-spirituality and if you can really see this, then the deliverance begins.

And I think the deliverance begins with first not trying to be spiritual, but try to be human. As long as you are still thinking to be spiritual there is no hope. So, how can you help people? If that person still has that kind of ‘spiritual dream’ there, you cannot help him; but if he begins to see that what he has gone through is not spirituality, that it has made them less than a human and he really begins to try to be human, these brothers and sisters you can help.

So, I think the first step is, try to help these brothers and sisters to be human. Don’t try to make them spiritual, in other words, they have tried. It’s man-made spirituality, it’s not real, but the poison is still there, because they think if you don’t do these ‘things’ you are not spiritual. The poison is still there.

So, unless by the grace of God, they are willing to get rid of all these concepts…you really need to get rid of all these concepts and thank God that you can get your being. That’s where the deliverance comes.

Then, on there, you can base, gradually, instead of centered upon a person or a teaching, you can come together and just center on Christ and encourage each other in the Lord and gradually you can be healed.

So, if the Lord has really given you a burden, I do believe that the Lord will use you to help some of them. Humanly speaking or looking back into history, probably a great many will be just forever wrecked. It’s very sad, it’s very, very sad. Ask the Lord to really clear you completely from the past. I’m afraid the past: you’ve come out of it, but probably it hasn’t come out of you completely. You really need to ask the Lord to let everything in the past really come out of you.

So, when you come together and seek the Lord it will not be trying to return to: ‘the good old days’ as it were. Don’t have that kind of outset, it will be impossible and it should not be. I personally feel that when you come together, be as simple as possible. Don’t try to aim high. Just be natural as the Lord enables you and just come together. Love the Lord together and love one another and try to be human and gradually your human faculties can be restored.

If you just come together and meet together and pray for these people, I believe some will be attracted, some can be recovered. It may take some time; you probably can’t aim too high. Maybe out of one hundred, one or two can be restored and thank God for that, I think, unless the Lord has something else, otherwise, if some would be recovered that is probably the best.

If your fellowship is restricted to certain people, certain groups, it can be limited and the Lord has brought you out and given you opportunity to have fellowship with other people. To me, I feel, when you come together instead of thinking to recover the past, the Lord may have something much bigger for you and if you center upon the Lord and open yourself to fellowship with brothers and sisters I believe that the Lord will lead you to something bigger.

We really need to have something from the Lord that is positive and ultimate and this will come if we really seek the Lord together. So, I would suggest that when you come together, just seek the Lord together in simplicity and don’t try to do too much, because you did in the past.

The situation is almost like what you find in Colossians, you’ll find the church there began well, but through their anxiety to be perfect they were led astray by people telling them: ‘If you know these things or if you do these things you’re perfect’. It began in the spirit, but it ends up in the flesh, they were led astray.

The same thing happened with the churches in Galatia. If she can’t draw you down, she will push you overboard, so that’s what happened. So, since you have tried before, you shouldn’t try again. You should just look to the Lord and trust him. He is our hope! Christ within you, the hope of glory, and if you center upon that, it’s not by our trying; it’s by his being in us. If you center upon this you are safe.

So far as your burden for these brothers and sisters, that is correct, we ought to have these burdens. People who do not have the spirit, they do not understand, but you have gone through it, you know what it is about and your burden for them, I think is very right and you should continue to pray to the Lord and it is correct; but another thing is, I think you have to get rid of the thought that you belong to that group. You don’t belong.

In other words, the Lord has released you from that group into something much bigger, so if you are burdened with them, that is fine, but you cannot try to confine your fellowship and your going on with the Lord still within that boundary; because if you do, you haven’t come out yet and the Lord wants you to come out. It is something that the Lord wants you to come out, just like the Lord said to the people of Israel: “Come out of Babylon”, you have to come out. If you want to help them, you have to come out. You cannot help them within, but as you come out, you have to be completely delivered from that bondage. If you still feel a burden for them is one thing, but you cannot be confined yourself to that boundary anymore. So, I don’t think there is any contradiction, if you meet together as people who have come out from that group and your main burden is to help the others to come out.

Then we spoke a little about how the leader would mock the brethren and say they were not acting human and that he refused to be made king and would be aloof.

I have known people, even though they tell people, ‘don’t follow me’ and so forth, but unconsciously people are still looking to him and he is still controlling them. I’ve seen other people doing that, it is no use. People who have gone into this so deep that he cannot help himself.

Don’t try to set up anything, just come together and seek the Lord together and let the Spirit of the Lord, don’t try to have a sort of idea of what you are going to do or what you are going to be. Just start from the very foundation as believers coming together around the Lord, seeking the Lord. Don’t have any kind of definite idea as to what will transpire and if you can do that then you give the Spirit of God freedom to move among you towards that which the Lord himself is after. You have to start entirely from the very beginning; don’t follow the pattern of the past. Really start as simple Christians, that is the way to do.
http://www.freefromthegrip.com/s%20kaung.html
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Old 05-19-2015, 09:39 PM   #2
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Default Re: Stephen Kaung on Abusive Churches

Quote:
Well, first of all, I think, from what you have said about The Church of Bible Understanding that you come out from; I think probably there are a few things. One of course is, it may have begun as something from the Lord, but gradually you find that it has changed its course and basically the reason, as you’ll find in all these cultish or semi-cultish groups, you’ll find that oftentimes it began well, but then some person began to dominate the whole thing. In other words, instead of holding fast Christ as the head, a man became the head and when that thing happens, invariably the thing began to move, to go astray. I mean, that is the history you can find in every, what we call cult or semi-cult, these things. Of course some may have begun wrong from the very beginning, but many of them began well. It is of the Lord and it seems to be used of the Lord, but then somebody took the place of Christ and then when that happened, you know it always went astray.l
Those are some very wise words. Actually, it sums up what when wrong with the LCM very well, someone began to dominate.

Many would say that the LC started off well. Of course, some would disagree on that, but either way, the LC had the potential to be something positive, and at worst could have just been something benign. Unfortunately Lee and his ministry were allowed to dominate. The effects of that are far-reaching.
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Old 05-20-2015, 06:50 AM   #3
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Default Re: Stephen Kaung on Abusive Churches

These are some of the wisest words ever shared on this forum.

Three things stand out.

1) Someone replaces Christ.

2) To be delivered you have to become human again.

3) In order to help people that are still within, you have to be completely out yourself.
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Old 05-20-2015, 07:42 AM   #4
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Default Re: Stephen Kaung on Abusive Churches

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Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
These are some of the wisest words ever shared on this forum.

Three things stand out.

1) Someone replaces Christ.

2) To be delivered you have to become human again.

3) In order to help people that are still within, you have have be completely out yourself.
Perhaps Kaung went thru the process, extricating himself from Nee and Lee.
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Old 05-20-2015, 11:51 AM   #5
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Default Re: Stephen Kaung on Abusive Churches

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Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
Perhaps Kaung went thru the process, extricating himself from Nee and Lee.
It's apparent in what he speaks and doesn't speak. Just the fact Kaung has had an aversion from the ground of locality doctrine indicates he may have seen the light through Sparks' fellowship that the ground teaching results in division.
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Old 05-20-2015, 12:43 PM   #6
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Default Re: Stephen Kaung on Abusive Churches

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Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
These are some of the wisest words ever shared on this forum.

Three things stand out.

1) Someone replaces Christ.

2) To be delivered you have to become human again.

3) In order to help people that are still within, you have to be completely out yourself.
Right you are bro Igzy. I was struck by this:

"After you have been brainwashed for a few years, whenever you leave that group, you are spiritually wrecked."


I'll say! That's exactly my experience after leaving the local church. And the experience of everyone I know that has left. Kaung had to know this by his own experience. And who could it have been that brainwashed him??? And what "group" did he leave???

Why is it so important to be "human?" Just consider Dr. Lily Hsu, and it makes all the sense in the world. If we're all just human then there can be no MOTA. We can let Christ be the MOTA.
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Old 05-21-2015, 10:14 AM   #7
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Default Re: Stephen Kaung on Abusive Churches

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Originally Posted by awareness View Post
Right you are bro Igzy. I was struck by this:

"After you have been brainwashed for a few years, whenever you leave that group, you are spiritually wrecked."


I'll say! That's exactly my experience after leaving the local church. And the experience of everyone I know that has left. Kaung had to know this by his own experience. And who could it have been that brainwashed him??? And what "group" did he leave???

Why is it so important to be "human?" Just consider Dr. Lily Hsu, and it makes all the sense in the world. If we're all just human then there can be no MOTA. We can let Christ be the MOTA.
I'm afraid that the instances of spiritually wrecked ex-LC members and even current members is all too common. Ultimately, individuals should be able to chose what kind of spiritual lives that they lead, no person or group should be attempting to define that. Unfortunately, it seems like that is exactly what the LC is attempting to do. They are peddling what they might label as a "genuine" spiritual (charismatic) experience. Because they have defined most other spiritual experiences as pretentious, it can lead members into a dead-end, believing that genuine spiritual experiences only happen in the LC. So if you leave, or you can't live up to the standard, it leads to an inevitable path, unless you come to terms with what the LC really is.

What happens when someone becomes disillusioned with the LC? If they feel that only the LC encompasses the positive things that they experienced, then they are destined to not be able to move on to what lies next. Similarity, if someone in the LC becomes discouraged because they feel that they are unable to live up to the standard, they are also destined to not be able to move on. Unless people realize that what happened to them is not their fault, the can easily end up in a situation of being "stuck".

It would not surprise me if there were many ex-members out there who don't even understand what happened to them in the LC. I know there are many "dropouts", but how many have come out of hiding to places such as this forum to critically discuss LC experiences? Not too many. That's not to say anyone has to do that, but it does makes me wonder. How many have moved on? How many are still trying to make sense of it all?
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Old 05-22-2015, 11:51 AM   #8
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Default Re: Stephen Kaung on Abusive Churches

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Originally Posted by Freedom View Post
It would not surprise me if there were many ex-members out there who don't even understand what happened to them in the LC. I know there are many "dropouts", but how many have come out of hiding to places such as this forum to critically discuss LC experiences? Not too many. That's not to say anyone has to do that, but it does makes me wonder. How many have moved on? How many are still trying to make sense of it all?
Former churchkids no longer meeting in the local churches I have crossed paths with have moved on. They're not bankrupt and unsanctified as Benson might have many think.
I believe many have the experience of Isaiah 5:20 before they themselves left. Ones I knew from Anaheim don't want to think about or talk about it.
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