Characteristics of a Spiritually Abusive Group

July 16, 2021

Just moments ago I got an email from a friend who asked if I had something that told how to recognize a high-control religious group. Below is what I sent him and I thought I would share it with you as well. It is drawn from my Spiritual Abuse Recovery Workbook. Forward this link so a lot more people will be informed.

We are posting a number of e-letters Make Sure Ministries has received from David Henke, founder of Watchman Fellowship, Inc., an apologetics ministry, on a variety of subjects. They will post on Tuesdays into the foreseeable future. As always, we appreciate your comments. Please consider clicking on the link following this blog to learn more about Watchman Fellowship and what they have to offer. E-letters have been slightly edited for clarity.

A Spiritually Abusive Group Will:

  • Blame misfortune on lack of faith
  • Label those who dissent
  • Put you on a performance treadmill
  • Claim a superior status with God
  • Close you off from outsiders
  • Provide no accountability for leaders
  • Emphasize conformity to legalistic rules
  • Label former members as unspiritual
  • Use fear and guilt to manipulate you to comply
  • Focus on the leaders positions of authority
  • Wound people spiritually and emotionally
  • Try to control your time and sources of information
  • Shut off discussion about forbidden subjects

If you identify with any of these characteristics you may have experienced spiritual abuse.

You may purchase my recently published Spiritual Abuse Workbook on Amazon.

Copyright© 2019 Watchman Fellowship, All rights reserved. Used by permission of David Henke.


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