Tuesday, May 15, 2012

It is I, and not my husband

A reader made an interesting comment the other day, and I quote:
It is not your place to share about their church, rather it is your husband's place to do so. Where is he? Why isn't he the spokesperson on this matter? If he were led by the Lord to speak on such a matter publicly, then it would carry so much more weight.
After some thought I'm left with some questions.  Why is it not my place to share about their church?  To my knowledge the only prohibition against a woman speaking, as far as the Bible is concerned, is in church.  Beyond that, I am free to speak, or write wherever I want, provided my husband approves (If the Bible is your standard.)

Also, why is the assumption made that my husband is not involved in this blog?  Sure I am posting under my name, and these are my words; however, the thoughts, feelings, and opinions are very much shared by my husband as well.  Don't most spouses share the details about their day and keep up with one another, including their blogging activities?  I would hope so.  He would be posting himself, but he's computerly challenged. :)

As far as it carrying more weight if my husband were to be the one posting, I very much disagree.  If you get to know the members of Living Faith Christian Fellowship, an interesting theme develops.  It is typically women that try to get their husbands to join Mark Bullen's church, rarely is it the other way around.  My husband and I have the uncommon circumstance of being a couple where the husband lead the wife to the church.  (I know that's shocking since I seem to be such a rebellious young woman, so independent from my husband as to air my opinions publicly.)  It would only carry more weight if it were men searching for plain churches, but the majority are women, so it is important to get the female perspective.

The question could also be asked, since the person commenting was a woman, why wasn't her husband the one asking? Heeheehee.  How does it go, when you point one finger at me, there are three pointing back at you?  Is the problem with women speaking publicly, being opinionated, or talking about churchy things?  I suppose a specification would help me understand why my husband should have been the one writing.

It is of great value for me to express my personal feelings and experiences while at Living Faith Christian Fellowship so that others may make an informed decision about joining the church.  While reading this blog, they will also be getting the church's viewpoint of myself and my husband, the truth is probably somewhere in the middle, though I do try to be true to the facts and fair to the Bullens.  Experiences, especially ones as emotionally charged as leaving a cult, and also having your church called a cult over the years as your church repeatedly falls apart, are very subjective and very much open to the interpretation of the experiencer.

But it is my firm conviction, that there is nothing prohibiting me, providing I have my husband's consent, from telling the entire world exactly how I felt joining, being a part of, leaving, and healing after my cult experience at Living Faith Christian Fellowship.  In fact, I feel strongly that it is my obligation to share my story so that others do not suffer the financial decimation, emotional breakdown, family breakdown, and spiritual destruction that occurs in such an abusive church.  I will continue to encourage others to do the same as well.  And thank you for such an interesting and thought provoking comment.


  1. Hi Noelle,
    In reading this blog, I am shocked....and that would be putting it mildly. For the past few days, I have been in a conversation with Mark Bullen. I did not know much of anything of his church but I had read an article about how to spot a false teacher and I liked it. IN the article, however, I spotted some false teaching of Mark's, so I emailed him. I did briefly read the rules of his fellowship on women so I really had no idea if he would answer me. He did and we've been discussing scripture. What I want to share with you though is the false teaching of 1Cor 14:34-37. On the surface and without digging a little further, it SEEMS Paul is speaking doctrine. But there are clues to the lies. There is no law in the Torah that tells women to be silent as Paul seems to reference. So what is Paul saying? If you back up to Chapter 7, you realize Paul is reading back to the Corinthian church, their letter they wrote to him and their letter is what Paul is reading in verse 34 and 35. Verse 36 actually begins with the word "WHAT?" You have to go to the original Greek to find it or a King James version, but it's definitely there. Paul goes on in verse 36 to chastise the church for thinking such an absurd thing as women remaining silent. How do we know this to be true? Paul worked right alongside women in his ministry. Prophesy will be poured out on women according to Joel 2. YHWH used Deborah to lead and judge both men and women in Israel. And the "church" is any gathering of the Saints, not a building. Now would Paul speak correct doctrine and then turn around and violate it? Or would YHWH violate His own doctrine or Word and put Deborah in leadership? That would be nonsense! The church has had a field day with this passage and have done as the Pharisees. They have distorted and added to the Holy Scriptures. The only authority for a wife is her OWN husband, no one else's. Read it. And the only authority for a single woman is YHWH/Y'shua. The only authority for a man is YHWH/Y'shua. All these preachers (& bishops) who are standing in the place reserved only for Y'shua will pay heavily for their error. Ever heard of Korah? His rebellion against Moses is the same as these preachers desiring the position of Messiah. It's not going to be an easy thing for them to answer to YHWH. Just thought you might like to do a little more digging and therefore, you would not have to answer to the ignorant (I mean that kindly) for your blog.

    1. Thank you for your thoughtful comment, mln. I appreciate your perspective on the matter, but I do believe the Bible does in fact say women should not speak in church. My oldest daughter is actually named after Deborah, so I am well acquainted with the book of Judges. You're right there was no law about women speaking or participating in worship, however, it is commanded in the New Testament that women should be silent. Depending on what you read, there can be a good case made for virtually any viewpoint and interpretation of this scripture. It is certainly up to all of us to make peace with whatever interpretation we adopt.

      My point is still valid that regardless of what women are to do and not do in church, there is nowhere anything prohibiting me from sharing my experiences publicly.

      This blog is meant as an opportunity for former members to share their experiences and for people considering Mark's church to consider what is written. It doesn't appear you were actually interested in attending his church, but debating scripture with him. I don't imagine that went over well ;).

      Many of the people wanting to attend, attending, and former attendees take the Bible quite literally and do not believe that one should need a Bible dictionary or commentary to read it properly. Just the other day another friend of mine said they went to a church and heard yet ANOTHER interpretation of this same scripture. People will debate it for centuries and this blog certainly will not make any difference in that regard to anyone.

      As points of interest and possible research you could find interesting, since it seems to be something you enjoy. In case anyone tries to split hairs with you, be prepared to know when the Talmud was actually written vs. when the oral tradition of the Jews began (I believe you mentioned it in another post). It could also interest you to look into the Jews feelings about the casual use of YHWH, or, in fact, at all.

      May we all work out our faith and not lose sight of God as we wade through colliding interpretations and opinions. Hopefully we will not become hard hearted through arguing and move on to do things that truly matter.

      Grace to you and have a wonderful night!


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