STATEMENT ON ABUSE
Abuse can be defined as any act, or failure to act, resulting in imminent risk, serious injury, death, physical or emotional or sexual harm, or exploitation of another person.
We condemn all forms of abuse: physical, sexual, emotional, and/or verbal abuse.
We believe that the biblical teaching on relationships between men and women does not support, but condemns abuse (Prov. 12:18; Eph. 5:25-29; Col. 3:18; 1 Tim. 3:3; Titus 1:7-8; 1 Pet. 3:7).
Abuse is destructive and evil. Abuse is a hallmark of the devil and is in direct opposition to the purposes of God. Abuse must not to be tolerated in the Christian community.
We believe that the local church and Christian ministries have a responsibility to establish safe environments; to execute policies and practices that protect against any form of abuse; to confront abusers and to protect the abused and counsel abused persons to remove themselves from abusive situations.
We believe that church and ministry leaders have a special obligation to assist in reporting abuse to civil authorities, when required.
We believe that the church must offer tender concern and care for the abused and must help the abused to find hope and healing through the gospel. The church should do all it can to provide ongoing counseling and support for the abused. The wounds of abuse run deep and so patience and mercy are needed over the long-haul as the church cares for the abused.
We believe abusers need to confess their crimes both to civil and church authorities, to repent of their sin, and to trust in Jesus Christ alone for salvation and forgiveness from their sin.
Abusers must commit to a program of change supervised by a trained professional.
The church should not protect abusers or repentant abusers from the legal consequences of their actions.
We believe that by the power of God’s Spirit, the Christian church can be an instrument of God’s love and healing for those involved in abusive relationships and an example of wholeness in a fractured, broken world.
****The reporting of any abuse or suspected abuse of children (under 18’s) is mandated by law. Please see our Child Protection Policy for more info.***
Stop Gender Violence helpline: 0800-150-150
(National toll-free helpline for survivors, witnesses and perpetrators of gender-based violence.)