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Battered Helpmate

Kathi Edwards

kfedwards@whong.org
302 Gilsan Ct
Silver Spring, MD 20902
United States


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BUY THE BOOK !!! ONLY $9.95 This page is based on several chapters of the book BATTERED HELPMATE. Contact me by e-mail for details on how to acquire a copy.

E-MAIL ME WITH QUESTIONS ON ANY OF THE FOLLOWING TOPICS:

characteristics of abusive relationships

psychological violence

abused women

emotional consequences

why women stay

abusive men

tactics of abuse

triggers of violence

by-standers

co-conspirators

family consequences

societal consequences

Christianity at fault?

Biblical solutions

ministry to the abused

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Spouse Abuse Bible Study

	This page contains Biblical help and info for those
experiencing spouse abuse or who would like to help a
friend with this problem.  More specifically, it deals
with special issues faced by Christian women in this 
circumstance.  This is not a comprehensive discussion.
The Bible Study format requires looking up the indicated
scriptures.

I.  ABUSE IS WRONG.
    husbands not to be harsh    Colossians 3:19
    husbands to nourish and cherish wives as they would
	   their own bodies    Ephisians 5:25-29
    peace in relationships    Romans 12:18
    folly of venting anger    Proverbs 14:17
                              Proverbs 14:29
                              Proverbs 29:11

II. ALLOWING SOMEONE TO ABUSE YOU IS WRONG.
    safety precautions advised  Proverbs 33:3
    body as temple of Holy Spirit  1 Corinthians 6:15-20
	   note: This scripture is often used to preach 
       against promiscuity, smoking, and abuse of alcohol
       and other drugs.  It most certainly applies to
       domestic violence.
    look to interests of SELF as well as that of others
       Philippians 2:3,4
    love neighbor as SELF    Matthew 22:39

III. FAILURE TO HELP AN ABUSED PERSON IS WRONG
    social responsibility    Proverbs 24:11,12
                             Proverbs 10:10
                             Proverbs 31:8

IV.  THE ISSUE OF NO DIVORCE    This is a complicated
issue for the Christian woman since she is torn be-
tween her need for safety and her church's well known
stance on divorce.  The following scriptures examine
the Biblical teaching on the subject:
    general teaching
       God hates divorce.  Malachi 2:16
       Old Testament law allowed it    Deuteronomy 24:1-4
       Jesus taught against it.   Matthew 5:31
                                  Matthew 19:3-9
                                  Mark 10:2-4
       exceptions
	      adultery (see teaching of Jesus above)
             note:  Divorce is allowed when a spouse has
             strayed, but not mandated.  Forgiveness and
             reconcilliation are always Christian goals.
          a non-Chrsitian spouse married to a Christian
             wants to leave   1 Corinthians 7:12-16
             note:  The option for divorce lies only with
             the non-Christain spouse.  The believer
             should always be working to heal the relationship.
          separation
             reconcilliation the goal   1 Corinthians 7:11
                note:  This seems to be the best Biblical
                option for the abused Christian woman in 
                view of the fact that it is wrong for her
                to remain in danger.  During the separation
                the husband needs to seek help with his
                violence problem so that reconcilliation
                will be possible.
             confrontation for the purpose of behavioral reform
                Leviticus 19:17
                Luke 17:3
                Galations 6:1
                note:  If the abuser refuses to seek help,
                he is essentially saying he wants a divorce,
                otherwise he would be willing to work toward
                reconcilliation.  If he is a not Christian,
                let him go. (see exceptions section above).
                If he professes to be a Christian, there are
                specific confrontation strategies outlined in
                Matthew 18:15-17.  If all these measures are
                tried and he still refuses, he is not behaving
                as a Christian. (A believer would want to
                be in the will of God.) He may therefore be
                dealt with in the same manner as an unbeliever.
                (see exceptions section above)

V. THE ISSUE OF SUBMISSION    This is another complicated
issue for the abused Christian women.  The "obey" part of the 
marriage vow is often misunderstood to mean that the women
shoud be supressed, when the intent is actually cooperation.
This section will examine the issue of submission and the
Bilbical view of mariage.
   marital roles    Genesis 2:18
                    Ephesians 5:22-33
                    Colossians 3:18
                    1 Peter 3:1-6
                    Titus 2:3-5
   both men and women created in God's image   Genesis 1:27
   ideal wife is valuable, strong, organized, dignigied,
      secure, confident, hardworking, wise, worthy of parise,
      a money earner, a decision maker, a teacher, a leader,
      of service to her househod, of service to her con-
      munity, not neglectful of own needs, trusting in God
      Proverbs 31:10-31
   husband leradership role implies servanthood
      Matthew 20:25-28
      note:  Throughout he Bible, when leaders are 
      appointed,  it is in order to meet the needs of the
      state, community, or organization.  The focus is on 
      being a servant to fulfill those needs, not power and
      status.
   when God's will and husbands will conflict, obey God
      Acts 4 and 5 (specifically 5:29)
         note:  When a husband is abusing a wife, he is
         making demands contrary to the will of God. The
         wife should therefore, not submit.
  
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Helpful Links

Aimee's Place: Biblical Perspective of Domestic Violence