A most natural assumption is that a person does not get something for nothing. Apart from the express declarations of salvation by grace through faith God has given in the scriptures, it would be natural to think that one must earn salvation, or at least work to keep it.
Thus, in abusive religions all blessings come through
performance of spiritual requirements.
- Failure is strongly condemned so there is only one alternative, perfection.
- So long as he thinks he is succeeding in his observation of the rules, the follower typically exhibits pride, elitism, and arrogance. However, when reality and failure eventually set in, the result is the person experiences spiritual burnout, or even shipwreck of his faith.
- Those who fail in their efforts are labeled as apostates, weak, or some other such term so that they can be discarded by the system.