Archive for the 'Power of Words' Category

Facebook?!

I woke up this morning with a heaviness and an urgency on my heart concerning the state of our believing body of Christ on social media. Over the past month or two, we’ve been blogging about, “The Power of Our Words,” “Are we awake?”, “Are our eyes open?”, and last week “Roots and Fruits. I had hoped that this would open some eyes and generate healthy Spiritual change, but I now feel the need to address the elephant in the room (or world) – Facebook. My Spirit is truly disturbed by things that I have seen on Facebook for some time. I’ll address those things in no particular order.

1. Is Facebook a reputable news source? NO, and emphatically NO! Please stop using Facebook for world news. I see so many things posted (or typically re-posted) from some site that people think is news, and yet it’s not from any respectable journalistic site, and half the time (or more), it’s not even true! It’s actually quite embarrassing that we, as Americans, are so gullible and lazy that we would just post something that looks like it supports our point of view without fact-checking anything. And, folks, posting false or misleading stuff puts your “friends” in a difficult situation. I mean, what, exactly, are we to do when a friend or relative posts something that’s blatantly false, short of pointing it out and making them feel stupid? Personally, I usually just delete it. Sometimes (If I’m really close to the person), I’ll message them and say it’s false. But realize, Saints, that this sort of reckless sharing of falsity is keeping the world blinded from the Truth of both the natural and the supernatural, and we have enough of that happening on purpose to not let it happen by accident. I know this because once, on 60 Minutes, a guy was being interviewed because he was one of the main instigators of the Pizzagate conspiracy on the web. He admitted to lying about the whole thing on 60 minutes, and so the interviewer asked, “Don’t you think your web viewers will resent the fact that you lied?” And he basically said, “Oh, they’ll never even know I lied, because they don’t ever watch 60 Minutes.” See what we’re up against? People lie to you and assume you’re not ever going to do the work to find out the truth. So, bottom line, Facebook is not news. Don’t treat it like news by posting without doing some serious verification. Better yet, test your posts to see if they’re loving and honor God. If they don’t, then don’t post them.

2. Stop feeding the hate machine! Most of what I see posted is done out of at least subtle hate, and this seriously troubles me. I get it. Everyone has an opinion, and most people don’t care what anyone else’s opinion is, especially these days. But your opinion doesn’t have to include hate. If you’re a follower of Jesus, this should worry you like it worries me, because I often see so-called Christians posting something about God, only to quickly follow that post with something about “hating Republicans” or “shooting liberals.” Stop it! As Joyce Meyer once said, “Just because I sit in my garage, that doesn’t make me a car.” And just because you say you’re a follower of Jesus does not mean you’re following Jesus. Facebook thrives on the constant novelty of posts being shared one after another, most of which contain blatant or even subtle notions of hate. It’s a machine, and its existence is based on the creation and sharing of ever-nastier memes. Every time we share one, we need to seriously ask ourselves, “Is there any part of this that I wouldn’t say to someone in person?” “Is there any part of this that would shock me if I read it in the Bible?” Look, I know that God created hate, but he did so to give us a righteous hatred for things that harm his people. I also know that we’re called sometimes to correct the saints, but when we do that, we do it with love. If you’re not sure if it’s hate – meaning, maybe, you just think it’s funny, or a clever way of showing you don’t like being politically correct – insert your own child or mother into the role of the object of the derision, and pretend it came from someone else. Then you’ll know what to do. Here’s a quick example. I happen to know a guy who posts things about God. Clearly, he’s a believer in God, and professes to believe in Christ. But I just went on his FB feed and saw two posts in addition to the God posts, one saying, “Always carry a knife with you, just in case there’s cheesecake or if someone needs to be stabbed,“ and the other a clear reference to hoping that Ruth Bader Ginsburg will die. Funny? Barely. Hate as their source? For sure. Would you want someone you didn’t know to joke about stabbing your daughter or hoping your mother might die? Of course not. So why re-post? Bottom line, don’t be a part of the hate machine.

3. Stop sowing spiritual confusion. More specifically, when we post things about God or scripture, and then follow those posts with hate, such as posts about “our” political party that are hateful of the “other” political party, we sow spiritual confusion. God’s people should be first and foremost illustrating the persons of God and all things Godly. We’re not perfect, but we should at least be striving to be better each day, constantly asking for guidance and forgiveness when we fall down. When we sow spiritual confusion, though, the world calls us hypocrites, and they’re RIGHT! This is the opposite of what God has in mind for us, for the Bible says that we’re to be the salt and light in the world – we’re called to be clear beacons and not to confuse the world. We’re to be the ambassadors of Christ to those who don’t know him.

4. Don’t be confused by the issue of judging versus correction. Not long ago, I re-posted an article with a picture of so-called “evangelicals” praying over the President. I was disturbed that these people were publicly displaying their work and wanting the world to see how great they were – which completely calls into question their motive. I was also disturbed that they were praying for President Trumps’ world and political agenda instead of praying over him for salvation, Truth, Light and behavior worthy of our Lord. When I posted this, though, I had a seeker ask me about it. He said he thought it was great that people were praying over the President, and he wondered how I, as a Christian, might think that was bad. That began a long conversation over correcting with love versus judging, and that’s a thorny issue for anyone. Mostly, he thought I was judging the President, when I thought I was mostly correcting the church. But that’s almost always too complicated to express on Facebook. Accordingly, after that conversation, I personally decided that I would be extra careful in what I post or re-post, and I have since decided to only “follow,” “like,” or express opinions of things worthy of my Lord so that my behavior or testimony will not turn a seeker away from knowing God or will not lead a believer down a wrong path. When I come to my final days, I do NOT want my legacy to be that I misled His people in any way! This doesn’t mean we can’t lovingly correct the church – my pastor does it, my prophet friends do it, my husband does it, and heck, because my ministry is “arming the saints,” this blog is often concerned with loving correction to better arm people for supernatural battles. Just don’t be surprised if people don’t understand the distinction. I encourage you to pick the most honorable and worthy path to show people the love of our Lord. Maybe it doesn’t involve correcting the church, especially if people mistake it for judging. This political season and our life in this world will pass away, but our belief is based on eternity, so err on the side of avoiding confusion.

5. Don’t be one of satan’s tools! Saints, my own personal opinion is that, whatever good something like Facebook brings to your lives, it also presents an enormous opportunity for the enemy to harness for his purposes of stealing, killing, and destroying God’s people. The Bible states that, “many false prophets will appear and deceive many people.” (Mt 24:11) Satan often uses imitation to deceive, and so he will continue to put up “prophets” that speak to his agenda and deceive believers. They’re false because they don’t speak the Truth. Accordingly, even if a follower of Jesus says he or she is a prophet (I’m one of those people who believes in modern day prophets – if you don’t know why, then that’s another blog!) we should not blindly follow them. Instead, we must continually test what they say. Even if it’s laden with scripture, test it! Ask the Lord to reveal the Truth of who they are. If they’re false, they’ll reveal it with a slip or a slant on the scripture that will prick up your ears. I’ve spent the last two years in fervent prayer asking God to open my eyes to the Truth of what’s happening in the world. God and I have an agreement that I always look for confirmation as to Truth and what He wants me to say so I don’t always go off half-baked or partially correct in my words. Don’t get me wrong – I still stumble, but the more I ask for spiritual awareness, revelation, grounding, and correct words – the less stumbling I do. Bottom line is that because Facebook is used by people for news, because it can be a machine of hate, and because it can sow spiritual confusion, satan will be using it.

6. Facebook is doing deep spiritual damage to the entire world! There’s a not-so-subtle chipping away at our civility and humanity by what goes on with Facebook. I’ve deleted comments from people physically threatening other friends on my feed, and, when I do, they sometimes complain that I’m “not following the first amendment.” And that’s just one blatant example. People think Facebook is anonymous, but everyone reads it. People think it allows them to argue with others, but they’d probably never do that in person. People think it allows them to “keep it real,” or to be “politically incorrect,” but often those phrases are simply justifications for past actions. People think it doesn’t hurt anyone, but we know of kids who have committed suicide over it. And, above all, people think that all of this hatred is allowed as some sort of American “right” of expression. All of these thoughts are wrong. Real people read posts and apply them to themselves, and they can be affected in ways that make the world a much worse place to live. And this happens, folks, millions of times a day, every single day. It causes families to argue, friends to stop speaking, and people to avoid other people altogether. I’ve personally been reluctant to visit even family, for fear that their posts reflect the way they’re going to behave in person. Here’s one small way that we can reverse that trend. My husband has “Facebook rules” that he applies to anyone who wants to comment on any of his posts. Rule number one, which is a good one, is that my husband will never, and I mean NEVER, post anything that is degrading or in opposition to someone on their own feed. That first rule is crucial to the rest of the rules, simply because the other rules apply to people who decide to post demeaning things on my husband’s feed. He claims that since he made that rule – which he’s had to post periodically – people have stopped coming on his feed to trash him. He’s also much, much calmer about what other people post, and he’s convinced that those other people are calmer about what he posts. What he’s done is to subtly insert a notion of mutual respect into Facebook. Now, don’t get me wrong, both his and other people’s feeds might be wrong or crazy, but at least – for those people and for my husband – there are fewer arguments (and thus less hatred) simply because they’re looking at Facebook as a personal opinion site, which they’re required to respect. I know people without that rule who feel compelled to respond and argue with someone else’s post. I also see people afraid to say something simply because they fear someone will come on and pick a fight. Think about creating your own personal rule of mutual respect for posts, no matter how crazy. Hey, it’s a start. The bottom line is that every single thing we say and do either uplifts or chips away at the spirit. We can decide which way it goes.

7. Is there any good in Facebook? Yes, and maybe that’s the problem because it does have benefits. Facebook is a great place to reconnect with friends and family and see what they’re doing in their lives. I love seeing pictures of vacations, time out with family/friends, hobbies, etc. Every morning, Tim reads a pastor’s mini-sermon that only appears on Facebook. He often says, “It’s also great for jokes and birthdays.” And, true enough, I have to admit that I love looking at the funny things that are on Facebook. I only look at it about once a week on the weekends, so that’s why you’ll almost always get delayed responses and well wishes late from me. And I love some of the funny (clean) jokes and videos being shared. My most recent favorite was a video of a dog carrying a plastic sled up a snowy hill and then hopping on it to slide down! I laughed out loud when I saw it, and It makes me giggle just writing it down here!

I know I might be preaching to the choir here, but now’s the time for us to speak for the Truth of what’s being put forth in the world and to stand up against the falsity. I encourage you to consider sharing this blog on your own Facebook page, even if you say, “Look at this crazy post!” More broadly, the Bible talks about a little bit of yeast getting into dough and permeating the whole batch (I Cor 5:6), so think hard about sharing only the kinds of posts that speak of God’s love and respect for others. Share posts about how to view Facebook in a Godly way. Share posts that uplift and edify. Share the Truth.

The Power of Words: Do they Dictate Your Path?

I thought I was finished, at least for the moment, talking about the power of our words, but the Lord has been impressing on me the extreme importance of this topic. I’m always looking for confirmation in things I dream, hear, or that are put on my heart to research or blog, and, once again, this topic popped up. This week I was given confirmation when the topic kept coming up in a discussion group with whom I meet, which is made up of developmental believers anointed as prophets. After that I heard a teaching by Glen Berteau on this topic as well. Glen taught a new dimension that I hadn’t thought of when it comes to our words, so I want to share this with you today.

Glen taught from James 3, which likens the tongue to the bit of a horse bridle or ship rudder.

James 3:1-12

Not many of you should presume to be teachers, my brothers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. We all stumble in many ways. If anyone is never at fault in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to keep his whole body in check.

When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.

All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and creatures of the sea are being tamed and have been tamed by man, but no man can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.

With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers [and sisters], this should not be. Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? My brothers [and sisters], can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.

Using the bridle as an example, Glen mentioned how a 2,000-pound Clydesdale horse can be guided from right to left simply by attaching a tiny bit that weighs ounces into the horse’s mouth. Clearly, our tongues act much like this bit and bridle. Unlike the horse, however, we don’t always have the careful guidance of the rider to move us from place to place. Instead, we move ourselves by our words, and those words move us directly toward the thing of which they speak. This means, for example, that we can move toward positive (blessings) or negative (curses) positions based on those words.

For example, let’s say you get a medical diagnosis, and let’s say it’s bad, like cancer. You can move toward the cancer by constantly talking about it, how bad it is, how unfortunate you are, how your family genetics likely caused it, etc. Or you can move away from it by using words of healing and thanks to God for a long and healthy life.

As another example, we may find ourselves constantly talking about something or someone that simply isn’t in the will of God for our lives. As a theological concept, free will means that you can speak those words and move toward that thing or person. But don’t be surprised when you ultimately recognize that the thing or person wasn’t the best thing for you and something you likely could have known by holding it up to the Word.

It’s like driving on the highway. You tend to veer slightly toward the thing upon which your eyes focus. So, it’s not just a spiritual law; the notion that you’ll move ever closer to the things you think, say, and repeat is also true in the natural world. What makes it different is that in the natural world people don’t necessarily have the grounding needed to focus and make this law work for them.

People with a natural worldview might say that there is “power” in positive thinking, or that the “universe” somehow moves to bring things about when spoken in the right way. With a biblical worldview, we remember a few important truths. First, what comes from the tongue indicates what is in your heart – “out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks” (Matt. 12:34) – but you can dramatically change your heart through your words, starting with words that confirm Jesus as God and asking for guidance from the Holy Spirit – “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” (2 Cor. 5:17) Second, God moves when people are expectant of his power: “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” (Mark 11:24). Third, the Bible actually tells us what we should focus upon: “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.” (Phil. 4:8-9) By the way, if you haven’t figured it out already, these things are somewhat circular. The more you speak in faith, the more your faith grows; the more positive your words, the more expectant of blessings you become.

Where is your tongue leading you – to life or to death? To blessings or to curses? To the spiritual best for you or to secular notions of success? Once again, I ask you to take your words and thoughts captive and to pay attention to what you’re thinking and what you’re speaking. Even if your situation does not bear witness to the blessing at the moment (for example, prayers for healing often find immediate purchase in the spiritual realm but take time to manifest in the natural) continue to thank our Lord for his work on the situation and for His continued blessing and protection for you and your family.

The Power of Words: Gossip

God loves all people, including sinners and unbelievers. Remember, though, that there are things that people do that our Lord hates – including lying, deception, violence, denigrating others – basically anything people do that is not edifying for the person or body of Christ. Oh, and gossip. He’s not a fan of gossip, either. And since we’re finishing up with a series about our words, let’s take a peek at this particular variety.

In my opinion, there’s a difference between relaying positive facts to other people versus telling secrets or things told to you in confidence, or even just talking about others for no decent reason based on things you’ve seen, heard, or surmised. The difference is a tough one to navigate, though, and I’ve struggled in this area because I like knowing what’s going on (especially at work) and being a confidant to people. After all, when you think that at least part of your life is ministering to others, you want them to tell you things.

So, lately I’ve been asking the Lord for revelation on what gossip really is. It turns out that the answer is pretty simple. Basically, if you’re repeating (or tweeting, blogging, Facebook commenting, emailing, or texting) something that you would not want the person to know you said, then I’d say it’s likely gossip. I’m fond of a quote that has been attributed to many different folks (and especially Eleanor Roosevelt) in various iterations, and that goes something like this: “Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.” It doesn’t mean that it’s always true – people do, naturally, discuss other people. But the quote serves as a bit of a reminder to me that whenever I’m talking about other people, I need to really think hard about what I’m saying and how I’m saying it.

Biblically speaking, there’s a lot written about making sure your words “edify” – or build up – others, whether spoken directly to a person or not. Ephesians 4:30 states: “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11 states: “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” Ephesians 4:15 talks about “speaking the truth in love” as a basis for edification, and those two things – truth and love – should be seen as prerequisites for using our words. Biblically speaking, if what we’re saying is not building someone up, or is not spoken in love, or even if we are agreeing with someone who is speaking in a non-edifying manner by spreading secrets, complaining, or disrespecting others, then I think we could lump all of that into “gossip,” too.

Proverbs 26:20-22 speaks to how gossip can stoke the fire of a quarrel: “Without wood a fire goes out; without a gossip a quarrel dies down. As charcoal to embers and wood to fire, so is a quarrelsome person for kindling strife. The words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to the inmost parts.” Moreover, Proverbs also indicates that while certain secrets are likely to be told, gossips are the ones who can’t keep them: “A gossip betrays a confidence, but a trustworthy person keeps a secret.” Proverbs 11:13

It’s that simple. And, really, it’s one of those areas where, if you have to ask yourself, “I wonder if it is gossip?” then it probably is, and it’s best just to stop.

Accordingly, I believe the best course of action is to err, once again, on the side of silence. We must watch our tongues and try not to repeat things or engage in non-edifying speech, regardless what we think we might know. We should always ask ourselves, “Is this something I would say directly to the person I’m talking about?” Additionally, if someone comes to us with information about another person, we should ask, “What is their motive in telling me this thing?” If it’s something that’s none of our business, we should refer the person to the person being spoken about. It’s most important that we DO NOT agree (even politely) or participate in the gossip with the gossiper. As we covered in the last post, polite agreement to gossip might be one of those things that can open the door to spiritual attack. It’s subtle, but a door cracked open is still an open door.

ACTION: Ask for an extra measure of discernment to recognize gossip, to help you bridle the weapon of your tongue, and only to use it to build someone up and to edify God’s people. Pray for both the gossiper as well as the person about whom the gossiper is speaking. Pray for Truth and Light to be revealed, and that you do not add any fuel to the gossip fire.

The Power of Words and Warfare

Did you know that our words can be fodder for the enemy to act on us? The enemy can’t read our minds or see into our hearts, but he can definitely hear the words that we speak out loud and can predict human behavior based on them.

We’ve spent a few weeks looking at the power of the tongue to call down blessings (life) and curses (death), but let’s think this week about how our words are used in spiritual warfare. As in blessing and curses generally, our words can help or hurt us in the war; through the right words, we can resist satan, knowing he has already lost and will leave us alone, but through the wrong words, satan can discern our hearts, fears, and insecurities and then go to work on us. Indeed, broken down, words are just soundwaves traveling through air or marks on a page, but the substance of those words can mean the difference between a life with or without struggle.

Ephesians 6 is the quintessential spiritual warfare passage in the Bible. Chapter 6, verse 12 states: “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” This is what is really going on, and so things that seem to be our worldly (flesh and blood) struggles or grievances are really just a part of this larger, more consequential fight. In the natural world, we may think that we’ve merely uttered some clever slight to someone on Facebook, perhaps even brushing off any cares of worldly effects, but the enemy uses these words to give him authority over us, and that authority is all he needs to bring demonic torment to us or our families. Jesus called satan the prince of this world, but his actual affecting power comes first not from his own abilities, but from ours – through our actions and, most importantly, our words.

In my opinion, when people behave unlovely to you it is likely for one of two reasons.

1. They’re being used by satan to cause you to respond in the flesh in an equally unlovely manner to open the door for the enemy to then come after you. James writes, however, that if we resist the devil, he will flee. (James 4:7) Accordingly, by resisting the urge to respond to people in the natural, you’re resisting the devil himself. That, in turn, continues the supernatural block on any demonic attack. When you see people acting unlovely in the natural world, do not be angry at them – it’s likely not even their fault!

2. They are hurting in their own right. Hurting people hurt people, even without the help of any demons.

Either way, people who act unlovely to you need help, kind words, and prayer. Accordingly, even when we think it’s warranted, we should put aside our offense and try to meet the needs of the person before us. Offense is not from God. Offense is from satan, and it can be a mighty tool in his arsenal to get us to move toward hate.

Saints, always remember that as followers of Jesus, the enemy has NO AUTHORITY over us. None. Nada. Zilch. No authority to bug us, torment us, cause sickness, bring sadness, or anything else in this world — unless (and this is a big unless) we open the door for him. If we sin, then the door is open and that’s on us. Fortunately, we have the Holy Spirit to remind us of our sins, and so when we feel you’ve done wrong, we must immediately recognize it, repent, and pray for ourselves and others in the moment. If we sin through our words, we must STOP IMMEDIATELY and ask the Lord for forgiveness and to take back anything we’ve said that is not in alignment with who our God is and wants to see from us. Then we must announce – out loud – that we’re forgiven by the blood of Jesus at the cross.

The door may have opened, but that doesn’t mean we can’t slam that sucker shut before any real harm is done. Our ultimate authority over the demonic comes directly from Jesus, who died and defeated sin once and for all. That authority – and the perspective that comes from it – can and should lead to a life in the natural world with virtually no struggle, no despair, and no fear.

ACTION: Ask for forgiveness of any unconfessed sin and the closure of any door you may have inadvertently opened for the enemy to act. Ask for an extra measure of discernment to immediately identify when a door has been opened, especially through your words.

The Power of Words and Wisdom

We’re still talking about words and the power of the tongue to produce life and death.

As I mentioned previously, this is an area in which the Lord is working with me, and I’ve found that I’ve had to do a lot of internal cleansing. While I don’t consider myself a hateful person, I sometimes forget the subtlety of what I say (or even don’t say) and the implications that can pollute my spirit and soul.

Today I want to talk about the spiritual growth aspect of speaking life and blessing to others, and specifically how refraining from negative words and, instead, speaking kind, encouraging, loving words to others can bring you wisdom.

Proverbs 11:12 says: “Whoever derides their neighbor has no sense, but the one who has understanding holds their tongue.” Leave it to Proverbs to just say it. Proverbs itself is part of the Biblical genre of “Wisdom Literature,” and MacArthur’s Commentary refers to the second clause in the quote as the “silence of the wise,” and so it makes a lot of sense that silence is a trait of human wisdom. And yet, how often do people go off half-baked, making comments about something when they don’t have all the facts or when it’s really none of their business or concern? How often do people speak only to fill spaces in conversation? How often do public figures get into trouble, simply due to their perceived need to constantly comment on every little thing?

Proverbs 12:18 gives us an idea of what happens when we don’t heed Proverbs 11:12, and the benefits of using words – when necessary – to encourage and uplift. Verse 12:18 states: “The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” There’s a bit of a chicken and egg thing going on here (do you hold your tongue because you are already wise, or does holding your tongue make you wise?), but it’s been my own experience that wisdom is not necessarily a trait of the young; instead, we all grow into it. Accordingly, if we spend as much time as possible listening and holding our tongues, we’ll gain wisdom. And wisdom, in turn, will allow us to use our words in the right way.

Whenever I’m thinking about wisdom, I naturally think about Solomon. When God said to Solomon, “Ask for whatever you want me to give you,” Solomon replied that what he wanted most of all was a discerning heart – the wisdom “to distinguish between right and wrong.” And God answered: “Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor have asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice, I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be. Moreover, I will give you what you have not asked for—both wealth and honor—so that in your lifetime you will have no equal among kings.” (1 Kings 3:4-13) I believe that wisdom is an essential trait of God, and when we seek wisdom – and especially the wisdom to know God’s will and to do it – we come ever closer to the Christ-like creation that God intended to populate his Kingdom. Wisdom is holy and lovely to our Lord, and when we ask for such holy and lovely things, the Lord will bless us beyond what we seek. And the wisdom that illuminates God’s will can be the foundation for our lives; it helps us both in the natural and the supernatural realms.

Indeed, in the New Testament, James states: “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” James 1:5. Explaining this passage, MacArthur writes, “James’ Jewish audience recognized [wisdom] as the understanding and practical skill that was necessary to live life to God’s glory. It was not a wisdom of philosophical speculation, but the wisdom contained in the pure and peaceable absolutes of God’s will revealed in His Word and lived out.”

Together, these passages on wisdom teach us that God wants us to have it. Thus, we should ask for supernatural wisdom (for wisdom is a necessary trait of God) while we develop our natural wisdom by listening to others and watching our words. Using Jesus as our example, we can easily overcome the natural. And as followers of Jesus, we are indwelt with the Holy Spirit, who can help us with all things supernatural.

ACTION: Once again, ask for revelation and wisdom. Specifically, ask for wisdom to see and do God’s will, to perceive strongholds (areas with strong negative holds on us and our behavior) and to break these strongholds and cancel their grip on you. Ask the Lord for wisdom in how you use your words. Ask Him to help you see the words associated with any incorrect, polluted, and “religious” theology and to give you revelation into the Truth of Jesus Christ. Finally, thank the Lord for an open mind, heart, and spirit to hear new and refined wisdom.

The Power of Words: Generational Curses and Blessings

When I went to seminary, there was a lot of talk about blessings and curses. In fact, I’m not sure you could ever teach the Old Testament without talking about blessings and curses – it’s just that prevalent. Now, the concept gets a bit complicated these days due to all the ways you can look at them. For example, some people want to focus on the specific OT blessings and curses listed in places like Deuteronomy 27 and 28. Others want to focus on historical accounts of specific blessings and curses of people, such as when the Israelites were forced to wonder the desert until nearly an entire generation had died, except for Joshua and Caleb, who had found favor with God (Numb. 12:13-14). Still others want to focus more on the single generational curse of sin stemming from the Fall, but with consequences that travel through generations of free will people, who then choose to carry the sin themselves. Finally, some people – perhaps most correctly – want focus on the temporal nature of curses versus the eternal blessings we have in Jesus.

Either way, the whole notion of blessings and curses can transcend even the Bible. Even secular/materialistic scientists have found that, based on our own choices and epigenetics, we can easily change the expression of our genes based on the choices we make that will be passed down through generations. In this sense, science confirms a biblical worldview, which can point to numerous scriptures indicating the stubbornness of sin upon families or other groups. Somewhat more charismatically or spirit-driven, we followers of Jesus also realize that when we make choices to sin, we partner with the demonic, which has a bias toward keeping us in the bondage of any particular curse. This makes it harder to break or reverse a curse or to acquire a blessing simply due to the demonic clouding of our minds to come up with untold numbers of excuses for maintaining the status quo.

But I want to focus on two main points this week. The first point – indeed, a point seemingly agreeable to everyone speaking or writing about the subject – is that words can cause blessings or curses, with consequences that travel (or have already traveled) through generations. It’s almost a direct offshoot of the spiritual law of reaping and sowing, but made much more confounding from its tendency to appear to affect one seemingly at random from the distant past, or to affect your children and grandchildren far in the future. Lest we forget the incredible power of the tongue to do damage, James wrote: “The tongue is also a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.” James 3:6. Imagine that fire traveling through your family line. Of course, we can also think of numerous ways in which words can be used to uplift.

The second point is this: whatever curse you may think you have, for whatever reason (which can include idolatry to Anti-Semitism), from whatever source (which can include your parents, yourself, teachers, demons, soul ties, or even items found within your home), and, frankly, even if deep down you don’t believe in such things despite the bad things happening in your life, the answer is always the same, which is to take authority given to you by Jesus Christ over this world and use it to break it for your sake and for the sake of future generations.

Is it likely that some of the difficulties we are living with today are put in place by one/some of our ancestors’ words or actions? Absolutely – how about addiction, promiscuity, confidence, worthiness, health issues, etc.? All of these might be labeled in the “world” as inherited or genetic flaws. As followers of Jesus, though, when these types of things happen, we must consider supernatural reasons – in addition to purely natural ones – to account for our condition. On the other hand, can we reap the blessings of our ancestors, or, better yet, put in place the kinds of beliefs and positive words that literally change our brains so that the blessings travel far into the future? Yes, we can.

I believe we have the authority in this world to ask our Lord to reveal and cancel curses – not just for us, but for generations to come. You can literally break a curse of addiction off of your future grandchildren by canceling it through the authority given to you through Jesus Christ. I also believe that we have the authority to declare positive blessings over ourselves, which will carry far into the future to our world offspring as well as our spiritual children. So, again, I believe we can literally make future generations better simply through our choice of using words that speak power, light, and blessing.

Remember from last week that words combined with sowing and reaping can create a double-whammy effect on our lives, especially when we remember the incredible power of even a single word. This week, remember that the words and deeds of our ancestors likely affected us, and that our own words and deeds will most definitely affect future generations unless we break curses and foster blessings.

ACTION: Ask the Lord to reveal any generational curses and to cancel them back to the source and replace them with a blessing. Mention any that you know about, and thank the Lord for His cancellation and replacement with blessing. Ask for assistance in bridling your tongue to help you ONLY speak blessing (Life) on others. Deliberately speak in terms of blessings – use positive words, focus on love for others, and on building people up. Your actions today will last for generations!

The Power of Words: Adding in the Concept of Sowing and Reaping

Last week we looked at the powerful effects of positive (life) and negative (death) words, both on and in our lives, bodies, and spirit. Today I want to talk about the sowing and reaping aspect of our words.

As I mentioned last week, the Lord has placed on my heart to watch my words, but it’s really a much larger issue. I believe the Lord is calling us all to fortify our spiritual roots and clean our houses (body, soul, spirit), to refine our tuning into God and the Holy Spirit, and to prepare a clean environment for new giftings to manifest and be developed. We simply aren’t able to grow a healthy gifting in a polluted environment.

Do you know or understand the tremendous spiritual weapon you possess with your words? Did you know that your mouth is like a machine gun and that your words are like bullets that can pierce someone’s soul and spirit? Did you know that when you wish ill on others or speak ill of them you can actually be putting a curse in place that comes back on you? Yes, you can, and here’s how.

I think we’ve all heard of the notion of reaping and sowing. Non-Christians sometimes talk about Karma or a sort-of universal cause and effect. We followers of Jesus with a Biblical worldview say, in effect, that we reap what we sow; not just crops, but words, actions, thoughts, and influencing behaviors. If we’re sowing negative or curse-sending words, we’ll reap that (and worse) back on ourselves and our families – sometimes for generations.

In Job – the “poster book” for having troubles heaped upon people – Eliphaz the Temanite tries to justify Job’s predicament based on the seemingly commonsense notion of reaping and sowing, even though Job rejects this based on what he knows of his own life. And, indeed, the concept or reaping and sowing (like that of blessings and curses) weaves throughout the Old Testament, but not always as directly as when it is found in Proverbs with writings such as these: “The wicked man earns deceptive wages, but he who sows righteousness reaps a sure reward” (11:18); “He who sows wickedness reaps trouble, and the rod of his fury will be destroyed.” (22:8); “The faithless will be fully paid for their ways, and the good man rewarded for his.” (14:14), Most relevant to our words, Proverbs 13:3 states: “He who guards his lips guards his life, but he who speaks rashly will come to ruin.”

The reaping/sowing notion continues into the New Testament. Second Corinthians speaks of the measure of sowing: “Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.” 2 Cor. 9:6. Hosea, on the other hand, links sowing to positive benefits we can see in our daily lives: “Sow righteousness for yourselves, reap the fruit of unfailing love, and break up your unplowed ground; for it is time to seek the Lord, until he comes and showers his righteousness on you.” (Hosea 10:12).

Together, though, these two notions – the power of words (life and death) and the spiritual law of sowing and reaping – should give us great pause. For it is words, more than anything else, that can so quickly escape and become sown. Certainly, if we sow good or bad words generously versus sparingly, the Bible says we will reap accordingly. But the nature of words should remind us of the nearly impossible task of gauging what even a single negative word can do to a single person. That one bad word, spoken with malice by you or by me, might actually equal a lifetime of words spoken by someone else. In this case, given the power of words and the unmistakable surety of the law of sowing and reaping, I would treat how we speak to others in this world like one might treat philosophy of God through the lens of Pascal’s wager: do not bet your life on uttering a single bad word – whatever finite gain there may be (and I doubt there is any), it is simply crushed by the weight of potential infinite loss.

ACTION: Do you wonder why some people seem always to have difficulties and troubles? Look at what they have coming out of their mouths. Are they curses, slurs, or statements of unbelief? If you look closely, you may just be witnessing the double-whammy effect of the power of words and the spiritual law of sowing and reaping. This week make a conscious effort to speak blessings to and about people, even if you don’t agree with them. If you have done so in the past, make an effort to watch labels you have assigned to people like “stupid,” “ignorant,” etc., especially on semi-anonymous forums like social media. Give people a chance to know our God through your uplifting and positive speech that reaps unlimited benefits. Ask the Lord to reveal any unforgiveness on your part and ask for extra blessings on any people to whom you may have used any negative words. Finally, ask for those curses you have spoken on others to be recalled and canceled. Then thank God for helping you to improve this one really important part of your life!


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