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"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)

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    We are a community of confessing believers who love the gospel of Jesus Christ, affirm the Biblical and Christ-exalting truths of the Reformation such as the five solas, the doctrines of grace, monergistic regeneration, and the redemptive historical approach to interpreting the Scriptures.

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  • « Suffer Hardship With Me As A Good Soldier | Main | The Benefits of Essentially Literal Bible Translation »

    On Guard: Preventing and Responding to Child Abuse at Church by Deepak Reju

    pg. 4

    In the movie Grand Canyon, Kevin Kline plays the role of an immigration lawyer who flees from a bumper-to-bumper traffic jam by heading down a side street. Within just a few minutes, a rather predictable Hollywood scenario unfolds: An upper-class lawyer driving a fancy car stalls in a dangerous neighborhood. He calls for a tow truck, but while he waits, a street gang surrounds his car and starts threatening him.

    The tow truck soon arrives, and the old driver starts to hook up the disabled car, much to the chagrin of the gang members. “What are you doing, old man? Can’t you see you are spoiling our fun?” protests the gang leader.

    Taking him aside, the driver explains, “Man, the world ain’t supposed to work like this. Maybe you don’t know that, but this ain’t the way it’s supposed to be. I’m supposed to be able to do my job without askin’ you if I can. And the dude is supposed to be able to wait with his car without you rippin’ him off. Everything’s supposed to be different than what it is here.”

    Welcome to the cold, hard reality of life in a corrupt and sinful world.

    Not the Way It’s Supposed to Be

    In the beginning, it wasn’t this way. God made the world, and everything he made, even the first man and woman, he deemed “good” (Genesis 1:5, 12, 18, 21, 25, 31). But quickly things went wrong as Adam and Eve chose to listen to the words of the serpent rather than trust in God (Genesis 3:1–13). Sin entered the world through the first couple and has been passed on to every generation since then.

    The Bible explains to us why this world is not the way it is sup-posed to be—sin entered the world and corrupted everything. That’s right—everything. No one and nothing escapes its evil grasp. The apostle Paul wrote, “There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God. . . . For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:10–11, 23).

    Every human being is a sinner. No one escapes the curse of Genesis 3. Sin has corrupted every part of our human existence—our thinking, our actions, our desires, our plans, our hopes, and our dreams. Our nature is sinful from birth (Psalm 51:5). Every bit of who we are is affected.

    It is no surprise, then, that some adults will do unspeakably wrong things to children. In a fallen world, one sees and experiences all kinds of evil. Some men and women are so distorted by sin that they willingly commit atrocious acts against innocent children. I am going to call these people by a variety of terms—sex offender, child abuser, or perpetrator. Sometimes I will even call them sexual predators because that’s exactly what they are—evil people who deliberately prey on kids.

    Abuse and Moral Authority

    Child 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 a child.

    God has entrusted the care of children to parents (and extended family), which means they have the moral responsibility to protect, feed, mentor, care for, and love their children. There is also a more general sense in which God has given moral responsibility to adults. Church members care for other people’s kids in children’s ministry; teachers guide children through their education; community baseball and soccer coaches encourage and equip kids with skills in a particular sport. Even an adult passing by a child lying hurt in the street will feel more than just the tug of a good Samaritan; he will feel a natural impulse to help someone who is weaker and more vulnerable than himself.

    God has given parents a unique authority over their children, but in some sense, he has given any adult who watches over a child— a teacher, coach, babysitter, or even a fellow church member—a level of responsibility and authority for that child. Every good authority reflects God; and every bad authority speaks a lie to children about God and who he is. When any adult—relative or otherwise—abuses a child, it is a violation of the moral authority entrusted to adults. Abuse is antithetical to an adult’s God-given charge to care for kids. To put it more bluntly: Abuse in any form is wrong. There is never an excuse to abuse a child.

    Show Me the Numbers

    To get a greater sense of the problem, a quick statistical overview of child abuse is helpful:

    There are approximately 747,000 registered sex offenders in the U.S. alone.

    There are more than 100,000 sexual offenders who fail to report every year.

    As many as one in three girls and one in four boys will be sexually abused at some point in their childhood.4
    Approximately thirty percent of all cases are reported to authorities—meaning that seventy percent never get proper attention or prosecution.

    Over 63,000 cases of child sexual abuse were reported in 2010.

    Offenders typically prey on children they know, not strangers. Most perpetrators are acquaintances, but as many as forty-seven percent are family or extended family.

    Posted by Marco on April 28, 2015 05:10 PM

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