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How to Break Generational Curses
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When we speak of sin, there are two types of sin (for the purpose of this study). There is personal sin and generational sin. Now please understand – sin is sin. Sin is a “violation of conscience or of divine law”. (Definition from Life Application Study Bible, Dictionary/Concordance). It is when we are drawn away by our own sinful nature. (“but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.” James 1:14-15). It is not doing the things we know that we should. (“If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.” James 4:17). It results in separation from God and death.
Generational sins (or curses) are those sins (or diseases) that are passed down from generation to generation, such as alcoholism, child abuse, and, I believe, some physical illnesses. Sometimes these curses can block healing, deliverance, and even salvation. Once we recognize these generational curses, the question becomes, “How do we break these curses?”
First, there is no magic prayer, chant or ritual. It is just a matter of knowing and obeying God’s Word. There are many resources on breaking free from these types of sin, and please feel free to check into them. These are just some things that God revealed to me in my own personal study on how to break the generational curses in my life.
1. Love God completely and serve Him only.
Matthew 4:10 says, “Worship the Lord your God and serve Him only”.
The very first commandment given to us is, “You shall have no other gods before Me.” Exodus 20:3.
That passage continues to talk about worshipping idols. An idol is anything in our lives that we make more important than God is.
Matthew 22:37 says, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.”
Love God with everything in us. We cannot truly love God if we have or want other things or people (or even feelings) more than we want Him.
This is what God says about idolatry (from Exodus 20), “…I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me,”
On the contrary, this is what He says about those who love Him. (By love, I mean, with everything in us, we are head-over-hills, totally wrapped up in Jesus), “…but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.
The punishment for idolatry is steep, but likewise, the reward for faithfulness to Him is enormous! That leads us right to our second point.
2. Obey God
Obeying God and keeping His commandments is not just about following rules. It is about practical holiness. It is about showing God how much we love Him. It is about letting others see God in us, and showing others how He wants us to live. Following His commands is also about meeting each other’s needs in a responsible and loving manner.
The entire chapter of Deuteronomy 28 talks about blessings for obedience and curses for disobedience. We choose whether to be blessed or cursed by choosing to obey or disobey, by living for Christ or living for ourselves. Deuteronomy 11:26-28 says, “See, I am setting before you today a blessing and a curse— the blessing if you obey the commands of the LORD your God that I am giving you today; the curse if you disobey the commands of the LORD your God and turn from the way that I command you…”.
3. Confess our sins, humble our hearts and accept our consequences (and when necessary, make amends)
“(They will) waste away in the lands of their enemies because of their sins; also because of their ancestors’ sins they will waste away. But if they will confess their sins and the sins of their ancestors—their unfaithfulness and their hostility toward me,—then when their hearts are humbled and they pay for their sin, I will remember my covenant, I will not reject them or abhor them so as to destroy them completely, breaking my covenant with them. I am the LORD their God. But for their sake I will remember the covenant with their ancestors… I am the LORD.’” Leviticus 26:39-45
4. Live in Christ
Romans 8:1-2 says, “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.”
When we truly live in Christ Jesus, THERE IS NO CONDEMNATION! We will never break free if we do not come to the realization that we are forgiven, washed white as snow, covered by His blood and He does not remember our sin any longer. If you take nothing else from this study, PLEASE UNDERSTAND THIS. It took me years to finally love myself enough to think I was worth being free. If you have to, ask God every night before you go to bed to let you see yourself the way He sees you (that is what I did)! YOU WILL NEVER BREAK THE CURSE IF YOU DO NOT LOVE AND FORGIVE YOURSELF! The second thing is when we truly live in Christ Jesus; the Holy Spirit sets us free from sin and bondage. The Holy Spirit gives us the power to live a truly holy life.
5. Practice the ministry of reconciliation
II Corinthians 5:17-21 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation: The old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
To reconcile means “to restore harmony between people” or re-establish relationships.
When we repent, or turn away from our sin, we are reconciled with Christ. Once we come to the understanding and knowledge that our relationship has been restored to Christ, we must encourage others to trust in Christ (through our words and deeds). Then we must also begin reconciling our own broken relationships. (In the book of Philemon, Paul encourages reconciliation).
6. NO EXCUSES
Although we may suffer from the sins of our parents (and/or ancestors), we cannot use this as an excuse to sin.
Ezekiel 18:2-4 says, “What do you people mean by quoting this proverb about the land of Israel: ‘The parents eat sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge’? “As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign LORD, you will no longer quote this proverb in Israel. For everyone belongs to me, the parent as well as the child—both alike belong to me. The one who sins is the one who will die.”
We are responsible for our own choices and actions, no matter how our circumstances, situations, or parents may have influenced us.
7. Break the cycle
Joshua 10 talks about the Israelites, God’s people, and how they experienced the cycle of sin, judgment, and repentance repeatedly. Each generation continued to forsake God, disobey Him and turn to false gods or idols. Not only that but they also failed to teach their children to love and follow God.
Repentance is not just about being sorry. It is about turning from our sin. That is how we break the cycle. We have to turn from our sin, teach our children by example and through the Word of God. Back up everything we teach them from the Bible with our actions and attitudes.
When God says, “…punishing the children to the third and fourth generation”, it is not just an arbitrary punishment. Consider how these generational sins (such as alcoholism) or curses can affect our children. Even more subtle sins like greed and selfishness can be passed to our children. (Our parents may have passed down these same sins to us). BUT God is “compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin.” (Exodus 34:6-7).
WOW! THINK ABOUT THAT! …OUR GOD IS ABOUNDING IN LOVE AND FAITHFULNESS!
I wanted to close this study out with a prayer… (Yes, I realize I said there is no magic prayer… This is NOT a magic prayer, but I DO believe in praying the Word), so here it is. Feel free to borrow this prayer anytime if you need to:
“My Dear Gracious and Faithful Heavenly Father, Thank You for Your love and forgiveness. Thank You for reconciling me to You through Your grace and the blood of Christ. Forgive me of my sins and help me to turn from them. Help me to keep You first in my life and love You completely. Help me to obey Your commands and teach them to my children and my children’s children. Break the curse of ______ (fill it in – mine is addiction) and whatever other sins and illnesses have been passed down in my family. Heal my heart, my soul, and my mind. Let me be completely devoted to You. Let Your Holy Spirit fill me to overflowing with your presence and anointing so that I can live a truly holy life. I love You. Thank You for loving me. In Your Holy Name I pray, Amen.”
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05 Feb 2011
Thank you, very true.
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...in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them... 2 Cor 5:19
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