1. greg

    Great article, and does make mountains of sense, but guess what? They (the fundies) will still make the same complaints.

  2. Jackie Koebel

    I hate to make broad-stroke generalizations myself. But, by your logic, EVERY person I have EVER met who has such deep-seated disdain for IFB churches, also has a major problem with God Himself.
    I’ve lived in 9 states and 2 foreign countries, and that is what I’ve heard from others, and observed myself. Therefore it must be true.


    • @ Jackie

      Individuals aren’t an organization with bylaws, doctrine, statement of faith, etc. so sorry, but your analogy doesn’t fit. It’s much easier to generalize based on an organized denomination with cookie cutter approaches to ministry than individuals.

      Nice try though. Next…

  3. greg

    Jackie – Ever thought that maybe the “God” the IFB’s present to folks is the problem? Maybe those folks that are leaving are more “discerning” than you. Maybe they perceive a much more “loving” God and didn’t find it in the IFB circles you travel in.

    Btw, welcome and expound some more if you would like.

    If you decide not to just understand God’s ways are above our ways. Just because an IFB pastor stands in front of a group of folks and says “whatever” about God and His ways, doesn’t make it so.

  4. Jordan

    Hello all, I am standing at the ledge of leaving my IFB church. I have been in the church for 15 years. The preacher has preached soul winning, and clean living; however what is referred to as the fanatical aspect I have never seen. I do only read the KJV not because I think it is the only word of God (even tho that was preached) but because I was raised (Southern Baptist) on the KJV and I trust it. Since I have read KJV for so long the other translations sound foreign to me.

    Two weeks ago the deacon passed out a purposed new statement of Faith and Church Covenant to be voted on this week. The document is crazy. It states things like the pastor is the only one who can interpret scripture (the old one says its the believer’s responsibility) that I only can vote to ratify church business presented by the pastor or deacon (I can not bring up business in front of the church) that I will not go to movies, use or sell alcohol or tobacco, indulge in worldly pleasures (does this include TV, motorcycles or even food?); that my tithes or gifts can be used as the pastor sees fit even if I denote they are for missions or other specific uses, if family or friends do not separate with me unto God I am to shun them only contacting them in hopes of bringing them back to God’s will.

    I don’t want to lose my church, I love my church family but I can not in good faith say I believe what is written on those documents. I have been praying and meditating on what I should do. I have asked others in the church, they all say its just like the old one. Can they really be that brainwashed. One told me, I will go to the movies and not tell anyone (officer of the church).

    I have known that sometimes certain members (righteous Godly Men) didn’t like me wearing jeans (a skirt is really not conducive for riding a motorcycle) but I don’t live in the light of man’s judgement only God’s grace. God has laid upon my heart to just vote against it (not speaking out) and if no one else in the church says anything just leave because it will be what the rest of the congregation wants.

    I guess I wrote this to tell both sides of this argument (there were) IFB churches that are not “One of those” and that there are “IFB” churches that are a cult. Study to show they self approved, cause no one can have your relationship with God unless you surrender it to them.


    • Jordan, Read this article: http://www.wadeburleson.org/2012/01/our-problem-is-authoritarianism-and-not.html Although I think that Authoritarianism and Legalism go hand in hand and that they are equally to blame, I think it may help you in your decision making process. Scary stuff you’re facing. I say run away as fast and as far away as possible and never look back. You can always find another church family (and it would even be a healthier one). It’s much harder to undo years of abuse under a spiritual dictator then it is to find a new church family.

  5. greg

    Jordan-Run, Run for your life!! Oh it is so tough.

    Our stories our similar (if you get out and talk with others you will see, all of us that have escaped the legalistic IFB churches, have similar stories) I was in my old fundy church for 16 years, we had much foolishness in our Church’s constitution, not as quite as crazy as yours, but still plenty crazy, no movies, alcohol, tobacco etc..(God cares more about the inside, if they read and believed their KJV’s they would also know this) Steve has a great article on here about the IFB’s false teaching on “tithing,” that (tithing) and the lies they tell about the KJV were the 2 main issues that led me out of that legalistic quagmire.

    Many folks are scarred for life because of this legalistic, brainwashing they receive at the hands of the IFB’s. But I am here to tell you that you can escape with your faith completely intact, and experience an even better relationship with our Lord, than you ever dreamed possible. Remember “God is a Spirit, and we that worship Him must worship Him in Spirit and in truth” also “whom the Lord sets free is free indeed”

    I want to wish you well, and I pray for you now even as I type this. It’s tough to leave but I promise you there are better things for you than the life-sucking, legalistic IFB.

    Just want to leave you with this brief definition of Legalism I recently came across: “Legalism is when your convictions become my obligation.”


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