What I mean is that they thought that elders could just tell people to drop all their interests and plans (under threat of going to hell) and that we would all remain sane because ‘God would take care of it’.
But, no, God did not take care of it. Because God lets us all – victims and perpetrators – reap what we sow or what was done to us, notwithstanding answers to prayer.
That meant that the elders became utter . . bastards. They were able to ban you from your favorite activities, whether it be a sport, a musical instrument or a business plan or a girl friend. And think that we could just continue living in church alongside them.
A classic example was when I went to the football with my elder. Apart from cheering for the same team, over a 2hr period we had almost nothing to talk about. Because he had banned me from all my interests and plans. And his work was too untouchable for me to ask about. So there was nothing to talk about!
Vic’s loony theology destroyed relationship.
So it turned the elders and their apprentices into bastards. Destroyed our relationships.
And destroyed my life. I became a depressed wreck.
There was no room for common decency. They would deny all of my explanations. Their ‘sight’ was always 100% right.
It also became an official policy that if you did any work for the church – practical or spiritual – you were to never expect praise because you were doing it as a slave to Christ. A slave does not expect or get praise.
So it was all forgotten that we were human. That we had interests and plans. Our careers were always rubbished as ‘natural’. So who cares if you are a cancer-therapy creating scientist or a garbage collector. Of course it makes no difference to God. But it does affect us to not live up to our potential, or for that matter, what we are supposed to be.
The Bible is full of Scriptures showing God’s interest in all aspects of our lives. We still have to live. Life is not just going to church.
The wonder of salvation is that we are saved and made ‘partakers of the divine nature’ while we are human. Eating, sleeping, TV-watching, creative, inventive, hard-working and sometimes slack and imperfect . . humans.
MCF forgot about that.
Another story. When i was leaving in 2016, I pointed out how we always rejoiced in the achievements of our kids in sport or carpentry or science. But why should we rejoice in each other’s kid’s achievements if it’s all going to be rubbished and torn to shreds and laid down in a few years when they get older?
The elders had very satisfying careers in the church doing exactly what they wanted. Precisely as they forbade us from contributing at church, unless we were of a special few, they would tell us our natural lives were of no worth and expect us to live out there without any plans or achievements!