This is a prophetic message, so it belongs in the pulpit.
God vests men and women with various types of prophetic gifts, callings and offices as part of the redemptive nature of revelation. That purpose includes a call to repentance, to provoke a sense of conviction about our common sinful nature and to offer the assurance of mercy. It points to a path that takes us out of sin.
There is no objective definition of child abuse. It’s the arrogance of human intellect to assert that such a definition could and should be. Nonetheless, we know that there is such a thing as child abuse in God’s eyes on the simple grounds that there is sin and abusive behavior among humans perpetrated against other humans. The whole concept of Law Covenant as revelation speaks of the need to mitigate sinful nature by erecting boundaries and enforcing them. The primary objective of Law is offering some framework for bringing social stability. While we might like to change human sinful nature, Law cannot do that. Such change requires a miracle of God and none of us is Him.
So we must first acknowledge that the question of what constitutes “child abuse” is culturally derived, and highly contextual. The greatest single problem is both the cause of child abuse, and the aggravation of such abuse through the actions of government. While some things people do are abusive to children, everything the secular state does to children is harmful and abusive. The state is inherently evil.
So the real problem here is the secular state. More to the point, the whole problem of child abuse rests on the mere existence of secular state government. The state is the proximate cause, the primary culprit. Whatever solution we might propose cannot involve the presence of the intrusive state, because the state can do nothing right.
What makes the state so wrong? It rests on a mythology that is drawn from the two sources of Germanic tribal culture and Classical epistemology. Western Civilization is an Antichrist; it rejects all of the fundamental requirements of God’s revelation, particularly in terms of Law. To walk with Christ requires you reject Western civilization and everything born from it. (Please don’t get lost here; it’s not the material products of the West, but the social condition itself that is wrong.)
When understood from the proper approach, the requirements of Noah’s Covenant is that man institute what he failed to do in the Garden of Eden: To get off his lazy ass and govern his family. While there is a burden on females according to their own nature, the failure of males takes center stage here because this is a man’s job. Translating the contextual meaning of Genesis 9 and the Rainbow Covenant means prodding men to take up the shepherd’s staff in their households and stay alert against moral threats.
Adam’s sin in the Garden was letting Eve choose something she was not equipped to evaluate. We are led to assume that Adam was aware of the discussion between Eve and Satan, and that Satan was not their friend. He also knew that Eve, by her feminine nature, was not wired to handle temptation of that nature. It was his duty before God to protect her from that, and he failed. The redemptive purpose of the Law is to correct his laziness and hold him responsible for asserting moral boundaries.
He starts building those boundaries in his own household. As that household grows, he maintains those boundaries. That means he must come before God on a regular basis and make sure he rightly understands what constitutes a threat to moral stability and what is the proper mitigation. At the time the New Testament was written, verses like Hebrews 4:12, 2 Timothy 2:14 & 3:16 refer to the existing Old Testament. We are obliged to parse the Law of Moses through our heart-minds and grasp what it says about human nature and how to mitigate the Fall. All of it presumes that mankind is governed by his own kin, whether blood kin or covenant kin, but that no one else has moral standing to govern human daily affairs.
The family-clan-tribal elder has a vested interest in the moral outcomes. He can have shalom in proportion to the wisdom of his boundaries and enforcement. But his whole life on this earth rests on keeping things stable on moral terms, not mere material terms. He has to recognize what constitutes a threat to that stability as a personal threat, too, and his actions have to match the threat. So in Noah’s Covenant we have mention of executing murderers, not because life is so precious, but shalom is precious and murder threatens the shepherd’s treasure in the people. Their shalom was his. The provisions of Moses’ Law calling for execution reflect a very wise evaluation on those moral terms in the context of that people, that time, that land.
Aside from Rome, that beastly predecessor of the modern secular state, no one in that part of the world would dream of interfering in family government. Even Rome recognized tribal national identity and some limited peculiarities from one to the next. A Judean was a Judean all over the Roman Empire, and fell under Judean law for some purposes. Rome authorized armed enforcement of Judean law on Judeans in all parts of the empire. That’s because most of the rest of the world outside of Rome viewed the moral obligations within and between tribes/nations as preeminent in all human relations. There were ancient protocols for all this. The New Testament fusses at Rome for seizing control of things that rightly belong to the tribe, something no previous conquering empire dared to do. (You should study ancient sovereign-vassal treaties for more details.)
The modern secular state lumps disparate nations together based on mere geographical boundaries, a mistake that arises from heathen German thinking. Western feudalism is turf-oriented. Thus, everyone inside the geographical boundary is governed wholly by the whims of the vested authorities, and cultural/tribal differences are ignored where inconvenient to the state’s interests. And we surely grasp that the state’s interests are materialistic in nature; that’s fundamental to Western identity in the first place. All subjects under the state are regarded individually as assets of the state — quite literally, property of the state. And the state’s “ownership” is irredeemably materialistic and immoral in nature. Everything is an economic asset, and that goes a long way to explaining law and the courts in a Western democracy.
The ancient man who was born after Noah understood instinctively that his greatest treasure was his family. It was written into the assumptions of his world view. It was presumed inherently immoral to regard family members as mere conveniences and assets. They were his, but he was nothing without them. So long as a man proceeds on that assumption, his actions would be hard to classify as “abusive” as he sought to establish moral boundaries for them. The rest of that clan could fuss about his choices, but in the final analysis, Noah demands that the man make a choice and enforce it.
In a secular and cosmopolitan society, the ultimate abuse comes from the arrogance of folks assuming that their personal cultural values are proper and fit for all those they encounter. We see today secular states using the excuse of “community values” to oppress folks who behave differently based on a different cultural orientation. The result is an unforgivable tyranny and oppression, because it always includes a host of demands that intrude on God’s mandate. Secular civil law is inherently blasphemous; where it seems some legal measure overlaps Noah’s Law, it’s entirely random.
So whatever the secular state decides to do in terms of law enforcement will tend to fail most miserably when it comes to domestic matters. It might seem to work in practical terms, but it remains a moral failure. Those who wield political dominance in the local community will spitefully slap down any alternative viewpoint without bothering to first gain a covenant compliance. There is zero moral authority behind their decisions. But they blithely seize control of civil enforcement power, cowardly hiding behind hired thugs instead of executing enforcement by their own hands of moral authority, and they destroy the moral social stability that God commanded.
Thus, the major logical flaw here is that the state claims to be a victim of certain “criminal” acts when it has absolutely not moral standing at all. With things like child abuse, the state has no standing because it is not a victim. Ideally the folks in the community would have some standing, but they forfeit that standing by refusing to establish a proper covenant. So when it comes to the question of whether a child has been abused, only the family household in which that child lives has any standing as victims. In particular, the presumed shepherd of the family has suffered a loss by the abuse, since it is his treasure we are talking about here.
The same goes for abortion, and marriage disputes, etc. The whole range of family law in Western Civilization as a whole is blasphemous. May God have mercy on those few of us who see that, because His wrath rests on the West.