Letter to Editor: Bible does not support domestic violence

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To the editor:

Charlotte Graham’s article “Christian ideals can contribute to acceptance of domestic violence” raises the notion that because Christianity teaches love, humility and forgiveness people being abused should forgive them and keep silent. As a Christian and a social work major, I find numerous things wrong with this article.

I have worked with foster children and adults who have been abused. The last thing I would say to these people is “forgive your abuser and put up with it.” The horror of abuse can shatter a person’s confidence to the point where they do not feel like a respectable human.

The Bible has harsh words for people who mistreat others. 1 Corinthians calls these people “wolves in sheep’s clothing” and “not true believers.” The idea that an abused person should remain silent because they should keep forgiving their abuser goes against Romans 6:1. “What shall we say then? Shall we keep on sinning so grace may abound? By no means!”

The minute a person starts manipulating God’s grace for their own personal gain, they are devaluing the relationship they have with God. Christianity teaches that Christ died for all, and when you accept what he did for you, you will have a new life. Christians are LOVED. Loved radically by a forgiving God who saves, redeems, restores and provides for ALL.

Graham says radical humility means, “having the mindset that everyone else is more important than you; that you are below everyone.” According to this definition, humility means, “Everyone is better than me; I am worthless.” This mindset does not lead to a life of humility but rather a life of self-humiliation. Humility is not having a low opinion of yourself but rather having an accurate opinion of yourself. Humble people are VALUED by God.

Charlotte uses Ephesians 5:22-24 and the first four words of verse 25 to state that if a woman is married to her abuser, she should be submissive because the husband is the head of household. Charlotte fails to use verses 26-29 in which Christ calls men to make their wives holy, clean, radiant, blameless and to love their wives as their own bodies. These verses do not support abuse; they show the standard that God has made for marriage. A standard that promotes teamwork not domination over the other person.

Patrick Hines, senior in social work

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