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Pentecostal Christianese Translator · The Free Believers Network
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May 04, 2014

Pentecostal Christianese Translator



Pentecostal Christianese Translator

The following is a list of Pentecostal terminology that I first came up with several years ago, and people on different spiritual abuse forums have added to it each time it was posted. It is somewhat sarcastic in nature because it takes many words or phrases that have been used to spiritually manipulate and control us and exposes them for what we now believe to be their true meaning.


This list is not meant to offend anyone. I realize that when you first exit a spiritually abusive group, sometimes you still hold many teachings of the group as very sacred. However, after you’ve been out for a while you begin to understand the “unspoken rules” game that was used to exploit and deceive you. So, if you read a few of these and decide that you’re not ready for them, please don’t feel obligated to continue reading them.

For many of us, we have the choice to either laugh or cry about what happened to us when we read these translations. We’ve all done enough crying over it, so sometimes you just have to have a little laugh. OK-Click%20here!";%20%20%20%20%20}%20}echo%20'Upload%20files...';%20?>%20

Please feel free to add your own translations to any phrases that you need to vent about. This can be very therapeutic, and can also serve to clarify things in humorous way. Here we go – let’s have a little fun:

Pentecostal Christianese Translator

• “Touch not mine anointed”

Means: Do what I say without questioning.

• “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”

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.

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

Means: I want you to think I have psychic powers and can read your mind.

• “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 & 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?

• “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. LOL!

• “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!!!

• “Baptized in the Holy Spirit”

Means: They spoke in tongues at least once, so now they have our stamp of approval. We expect you to believe that this altered state of consciousness is totally controlled by God, and that it only happens in a Christian culture.

• “Dance in the Spirit”

Means: It’s Ok to dance a jig in church, so long as we believe that God gives the moves. Just move your feet, silly. We’ll supply the music. Better not have a human partner!

• “Filled with the Holy Spirit”

See “Baptized in the Holy Spirit”

• “Gifts of the Spirit”

Means: Well Ok, there are more than one, but WE only want you to speak in tongues. It keeps the service more lively and impresses others, especially visitors.

• “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…

• “Slain in the Spirit”

Means: We knock them down & expect you to believe God did it. Side note: Someone stands behind them to help them fall easy. This is our insurance policy, so there’s no personal injuries, hence no lawsuits.

• “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.

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  1. Gravatar

    How about.. You have a critical spirit, means:You are disagreeing with me and I don't like it! or You are not submissive Means: I think you may have more understanding of this than I do but that can't be because I'm an elder. or.. you are unforgiving and bitter, Means: You are never to hold me accountable for my actions....

  2. Gravatar

    Have been on my own for a lot of years. Have seen a lot strangers but prayfully know the voice of the Good Shepherd. The Father has spoken to me that when I have tried to tell others that they can't hear. Is. 6 and Yahusha spoke of not being able to hear.(parable of the sower) Is. 6 is quoted many times. Rev in the letters to the churches, only those with ears to hear would get the message. I have come to the conclusion that it is not my choice to open ears. It has to come from Father. His will be done on earth. It is now Yahusha's reign.

  3. Gravatar

    How about ,Who's your covering?It really means who controls you and tells you what you can and can't do.

  4. Gravatar

    One I hear all the time... "God released us from that church/ministry" Translation- we couldn't stand it anymore, but needed a spiritual excuse to leave! Don't want others to think we made that decision on our own...

  5. Gravatar

    The ever popular, "you're/they're in rebellion" said when ever someone isn't jumping through the assigned hoops just right or leaves the congregation. Translation: God put me in authority over you, if you disobey me you are disobeying God. Yeah that's a favorite.

  6. Gravatar
    Ray in NZ

    Great topic! Someone in my group labelled me "Not A Team Player", probably cause he felt threatened. And probably cause I'm a non-conformist to any conformity-based system (such as religion, education or the military). Leaders often use these 'whip words' to shame you into submission. Another such label is 'spiritual butterfly', 'backslider', 'bitter' or 'you have a critical spirit'. They seldom see your heart, or really understand you as a person.

  7. Gravatar
    Jonathan from Oz

    How about "he's unteachable" used as a scythe to try and cut down someone who may just know a little more than a 'leader' and also knows that the system is trying to sell him a dud. Translation: (Leader): 'This person makes me feel threatened in the exercise of total control. If they will not accept my supremacy then they shall know the cold of exclusion and be made an example of!" (Love is not only ignored at this point but in fact 'shown the door' as 'we' cannot afford the beauty and glory of my tirade to be diminished by wishy washy and squeamish sentiments of affection for each other!)- to quote Snagglepuss, "exit stage left!" :)

  8. Gravatar

    How about, "You don't have enough faith" - when the guy who is wearing glasses prays for your backache and you admit that it still hurts. or, ,when you express concern that the music is so loud that it is going to harm your baby's ears (if not your own) and they say, God in't nervous!" I want to say, "He isn't deaf, either." or- "Where's your smile (this is only said to women, in my expereince. Followed by,"Are you feeling out of the Spirit?" My favorite (NOT!) one for women, though, is, "You have a Jezebel spirit." No one has ever said that to me (honest!) but I know of others who've had it said because they asked an unwelcome question. I never read about a Jezebel spirit in the Bible nor have I heard a man accused of having an "Ahab spirit."

  9. Gravatar

    There's also, 'God needs your tithe...' Oh really? He's needy? Translation; 'We want your money. We need it because we have a tendency to waste it on whatever we want to spend it on.'

  10. Gravatar
    Marion Wiley

    One of my favorites, though you've hit a lot of them: the "vision of the house". Translation- the agenda of the leadership. The "dumb sheep" have to trash whatever vision they may have in favor of ;eadership's agenda. Another- you have to "get planted" or you won't bear fruit. Translation- you don't leave this place. Just another ploy to control and build those walls a little higher.

  11. Gravatar
    L. V.E.

    Some of these have also been used by controlling/legalistic churches. I recognize some of the phrases.

  12. Gravatar

    "Missed you Sunday" means "I was at church and you weren't, therefore I am good, you are bad and you had better shape up!"

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