An FBS Interview with Pastor Chris Moles on The Heart of Domestic Abuse
Pastor Chris Moles is a 2011 graduate of the MA in Biblical Counseling (MABC) at Faith Bible Seminary (FBS). As Chris notes in today’s interview, at FBS we not only train counselors—we train men and women who will train others also. “And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses, entrust to reliable people who will be qualified to teach others also” (2 Timothy 2:2).
Because of Pastor Moles’ leadership in biblical counseling, especially in the area of domestic abuse, our FBS team reached out to Chris to interview him—and to further equip each of us in how the church can minister in domestic abuse situations.
FBS Staff: “Pastor Moles, please tell our readers a bit about yourself and your ministry.”
Pastor Moles: “I’m an ordained minister with the Christian and Missionary Alliance and Senior Pastor of Grace Community Chapel (Eleanor, WV). I’m also a Certified Biblical Counselor (ACBC and IABC) and a certified group facilitator in domestic violence intervention and prevention. And I serve as a faculty member with the West Virginia Coalition Against Domestic Violence in their state-wide intervention training. I hold the B.A. in Bible from Cedarville University and the M.A. in Biblical Counseling from Faith Bible Seminary. I’m also the author of The Heart of Domestic Abuse: Gospel Solutions for Men Who Use Control and Violence in the Home.”
FBS Staff: “Chris, do you have a website where our readers can find your book, The Heart of Domestic Abuse, and other resources?”
Pastor Moles: “Yes, thanks for asking. Readers can find my website, along with blog posts, free resources, information about ministry coaching, and my book at http://www.chrismoles.org.”
FBS Staff: “Chris, is there a book review or summary of The Heart of Domestic Abuse that you’d highlight for our readers?”
Pastor Moles: “Pastor Bob Kellemen, even before he joined the staff at FBS as VP and Academic Dean, was gracious to write the following endorsement for The Heart of Domestic Abuse.”
The Heart of Domestic Abuse provides just what the subtitle suggests: gospel solutions for men who control through violence in the home. This is a long overdue book in the evangelical church world. It’s a book that understands the heart dynamics and the relational sin of abuse in the home. It is a book that provides not just “solutions,” but “soul-u-tions”—heart change that leads to relational change based on gospel change.
FBS: “What motivated you to write The Heart of Domestic Abuse?”
Pastor Moles: “Prior to attending FBS, I never considered writing a book. In fact, that seemed like a project outside of my skill and expertise. But, in our very first class, Introduction to Biblical Counseling, Pastor Steve Viars suggested that our class was not only positioned to equip students to contribute to the movement, but that it was expected that we would become leaders in the biblical counseling movement. Dr. Viars even suggested that for some of us that would include writing books. This became a theme among my professors at FBS who urged me to take my experience in domestic violence intervention and produce content. In particular Dr. Rob Green and Dr. Stuart Scott were tremendously supportive and highly involved in helping pursue publication.”
FBS Staff: “How did your training at FBS in the MABC equip you to minister in the area the book covers?”
Pastor Moles: “I was involved in Domestic Abuse Intervention prior to attending FBS. However, my time, relationships, and experiences at FBS became highly significant in the development of my current ministry. I cannot imagine a program that combines the wealth of biblical content with the practical expertise of the instructors. My professors read like a who’s who in the biblical counseling movement from Paul Tripp to Stuart Scott to Kevin Carson to Doc. Smith and on and on. Not only was I learning from expert practitioners; I was developing relationships that last to this day. Shooting hoops with Doug Bookmen, having coffee with Dr. Tripp, sharing a meal with Kevin Carson—these all gave me more than the classroom could provide. They gave me an opportunity to ask questions, pursue feedback, and grow personally and in my ministry. I also think the humility of the program gave me the confidence to pursue ministry. What I mean is that it was not uncommon for peers or professors to ask me questions about my experience in domestic violence intervention and respect my input. We would work cases together and those hands-on aspects of co-leadership spoke to many of my fears and built a level of confidence in my work.”
FBS Staff: “Chris, what were 2 or 3 of the most significant experiences you had at FBS in the MABC? What were 2 or 3 of the most important things you learned about Christian living and biblical counseling via FBS and the MABC?”
Pastor Moles: “For me, the question reads, ‘Who are some of the most significant people you met through FBS?’ Prior to my time at FBS, I was practicing biblical counseling somewhat in isolation. I live in a small community in a somewhat forgotten place. The closest biblical counselor to me was in another state. I was nervous walking back into a classroom again, but what I found there was not just another lecture hall. I found a family. I can honestly say that the people I met through the MABC have become some of the most influential and dearest friends in my life.”
FBS Staff: “In addition to writing The Heart of Domestic Abuse, what other ways are you using your MABC degree from FBS in your life and ministry?”
Pastor Moles: “I’m blessed to continue pastoring our small church in West Virginia, and continue to work part-time for our local criminal corrections department. Since FBS, God has blessed me with a larger role in the biblical counseling movement through speaking at many of our conferences and events, occasionally guest lecturing on domestic violence at a few seminaries that offer biblical counseling degrees, writing for the Biblical Counseling Coalition, and serving other BC agencies. I have the privilege of hosting a weekly podcast: The Peaceworks Podcast with Chris Moles. And I write a weekly blog on the topic of domestic violence and the church. I also host a membership site called PeaceWorks University where people-helpers pay a monthly fee to access my library of content as well as interact with me in an effort to grow in their ministry response to domestic abuse.”
FBS Staff: “Pastor Chris, it’s so encouraging to hear all the ways God is using you and the equipping you have received. As you reflect on your training at FBS, why do you think other students should consider enrolling in the MABC at FBS?”
Pastor Chris: “Faith’s MABC will equip you to grow in your knowledge and skill regarding biblical counseling—while being in relationship with successful practitioners who know and do biblical counseling well. Connectivity to a vital local church and the heart of the biblical counseling movement are some of the unique strengths of the MABC at FBS. I can think of no other institution that can offer, to the extent that FBS can, the diversity and unity that is the biblical counseling movement as a whole.”
FBS Staff: “Thank you, Pastor Chris, for your faithful ministry in pastoring, biblical counseling, and in equipping others to minister in the difficult area of domestic abuse.”
Be Equipped: Faith Bible Seminary’s MABC enrollment period for the Winter semester is now active. Please contact us if you are considering training that can equip you for further ministry like Christ Moles.