Abusive Christianese

I found this here. Perhaps over time I’ll add some more Christianese statements to the list. To clarify, the reason I call these phrases abusive is because they are used by church leaders to manipulate, control and punish Christians under their influence. 

The list didn’t originate with the site where I found it, and it came out of the Pentecostal church. I find it additionally ironic that I’ve heard these same statements used the same way in the Baptist churches of my past.


Christianese Translator

• “Touch not mine anointed”

Means: Do what I say without questioning. [note by Danni: it also means whatever the preacher says is the equivalent to God saying it. The preacher has no accountability and is over-glorified. This is a demand for idolatrous worship. The modern-day pastor is not the same as an Old Testament prophet or king chosen and anointed by God. The modern pastor is supposed to be a servant leader and believers are supposed to “try the spirits” and take everything back to God and the Word for confirmation.]

• “You are ‘out of your place’ in the spirit”

Means: You are not complying 200% to my every command.

• “Jesus came to bring a sword”

Means: I want you to cut off your family and friends and become co-dependent on me.

• “Sanctify your emotions”

Means: Turn off your brain and let me do the thinking for you.

• “You have an independent spirit” [note from Danni: I heard this one frequently as, “You have a rebellious spirit.”]

Means: You have begun to think for yourself again – now stop it, or else!

• “Yeah, and the Lord would say to thee…”

Means: I’m getting ready to give you your marching orders. [Note from Danni: Anytime someone speaks to me in King James English every hair on the back of my neck stands up. It sounds like a sure sign of erroneous theology or manipulative content coming right up since the speaker has to resort to “artificial holiness speak” to communicate it.]

• “I’m getting ready to read somebody’s mail”

Means: I want you to think I have psychic powers and can read your mind. [Note from Danni: It also usually means I’m about to publically humiliate someone. Will it be you?  If not this time, it will be your turn soon.]

• “We should all speak the same thing” (based on 1 Cor 1:10)

Means: Always agree with the leadership, anything else is strife or rebellion.

• After “Joe” leaves the church it is said of him: “Oh, Joe wouldn’t let us pastor him”.

Means: Joe wouldn’t submit enough and let us control/manipulate him.

• “Truth is not always the truth if it is not spoken in love.”

Means: You are in sin if you say anything bad about us!

• “The Bible doesn’t have anything to say about votes, ballets, etc.”

Means: I am in total control and you will have no say-so.

• “I’m discerning an attitude!”

Means: I am about to rip one of your heads off in public to make you an example of what happens to anyone who crosses me.

• “I wonder if some of you are even saved!”

Means: Your assurance of salvation should not be based in your acceptance of the sacrifice that Jesus made at Calvary, but rather in adhering to my every demand – and that has been brought into question!

• “This is not a democracy – it’s a theocracy.”

Means: I am in total control here. Whatever I say goes.

• “I’ll pray for you.”

Means: Too bad about your situation – glad it’s not me. Glad I don’t REALLY have to do anything to help – see ya!

• “God put it on my heart”

Means: I really want to tell you this (or really want to do this) and if I just say I WANT to, you’ll be able to tell me why I shouldn’t, but if I tell you GOD SAID then you can’t argue with it, can you? [note from Danni: also means “I am going to use “God said” to manipulate you for my own purposes.]

• “Quiet Time”

Means: (NO clue what that was when I went to church… never read it in the bible)

• “Praise and Worship”

What’s the dif??? ….oh yeah…. we had some teaching about the difference from time to time so you could tell when you were praising and when you were worshiping.

• “I’m blessed”

Means: Life sucks, but I have my head buried in the sand and am avoiding all issues in my life in favor of seeking after religious experiences.

• “I love you in the Lord”

Means: I CAN’T STAND you in the natural! LOL!!!

• “Nominal Christian”

Means: Normal Christian, not one with super-gifts. Those in other churches. Not one of us because we know we are more holy and could teach them some things!

• “OF God”

Means: What we perceive as good… looks holy. (All white)

• “OF Satan”

Means: What we perceive as bad… looks evil. (All black)

• “OF the flesh”

Means: Anything people do that we just don’t think is right. (Oh Oh, Grey area!, but more black than white.) Watch out! Satan is lurking…

• “Contagious”

Means: A phrase used by my former spiritually abusive pastor to label anyone who might encourage followers to think for themselves.

• “Blaming Christianity”

Means: This is a common accusation that spiritual abusers make against their victims who try to hold them accountable for their actions.

• “Bitterness”

Means: The state of mind of anyone who would dare question the pastor’s supreme authority.

Fresno Pastor Charles Dickerson Found “Not Guilty”

My thanks to KMPH Fox 26 for this update.


KMPH News has learned that a verdict has been reached in the sexual molestation trial of Fresno Pastor Charles Dickerson.

KMPH has learned that a jury found Dickerson “not guilty” on all counts against him. Dickerson had been facing seven counts of sexual abuse.

Dickerson is the Senior Pastor for Pearly Grove Baptist Church in Southwest Fresno. He has been on trial for allegedly molesting and raping his two teenaged step-daughters. The girls later went on to recant their allegations.