Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Whose Kingdom Reigns in Your Life?


Satan is in rebellion against God. He has already lost, and he knows it, but until he is locked up for good he still looks for opportunities to wreak havoc any way he can. (1 Peter 5:8). Knowing he cannot overthrow God makes him angry, frustrated, and he has turned his hatred toward humans, who are made in the image of God. He will do whatever he can to devour or destroy the human race. 

If he can’t kill you, he will try and recruit you into his rebellion against God. If that doesn’t work, he will try everything he can to keep you from walking in God’s kingdom and fulfilling your God-given purpose. You are a threat to him and he knows it. If he can keep you under his domain of darkness you will be out of his way for now, but will ultimately end up in eternal captivity and a slave to darkness.

But there’s good news…

For He (God the Father) rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” Colossians 1:13-14.

To be under the “domain” of darkness is to be in a place where darkness rules over you. It’s not a place of freedom. It’s not a place where you can do whatever you want. It’s a place of bondage, captivity, stumbling around in the dark, unaware and unable to find your purpose and place in life, and really, unable to find life itself. In this place satan has you where he wants you.

But God…

This Scripture in Colossians tells us that the Father in heaven rescued you from the domain of darkness and transferred you to the kingdom of His beloved Son Jesus. This was done when Jesus died on the cross, and it becomes a reality in your life when you believe in Jesus—that He died for your sin, that the Father raised Him from the dead—and when you confess Him, verbally acknowledging Him, as Lord of your life.

The domain of darkness is still around you, its around all of us, but through faith in Jesus Christ you are pulled out of that domain and placed into the kingdom of Light, even while still here on earth.

The apostle John gives more light on this in quoting Jesus:

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. John 3:16-17

God, the Father, sent His Son Jesus to the earth to die on the cross so you could have eternal life in His kingdom of Light. He didn’t send Jesus to judge and punish people for sinful behavior. There is a time of judgment coming when that will happen, but not yet. Now, He has given us a way to escape this judgment. He sent Jesus to save us—to show us how to come out from under that domain of darkness and into His kingdom of Light. 

Jesus went on to explain:

He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. John 3:18

Whoever is under the domain of darkness is already judged. Jesus didn't need to come pronounce judgment because judgment is already inevitable for those in darkness. Judgment already rules over them. Instead, Jesus came to proclaim a way out of the judgment and into freedom from the domain of darkness. 

He continues:

This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. John 3:19-20.

Judgement comes on those in darkness including those who choose not to accept the Light when its offered to them. These are those who turn from the Light—from the rescuing hand of Jesus—and choose instead to stay under the domain of darkness. Instead of being willing to expose their sin and dark deeds to the light of Jesus so they can be forgiven and their sin eradicated, they choose instead to continue in their sin, to stay in the dark and hide, most likely hoping they won’t be found out, or ignoring the fact that there will be a judgment to come. But there is a judgment, and there is no way to opt out of that reality. We cannot be our own god and create our own truth, and if we think we can we are buried deep under the deception of darkness.

Everyone born into this world is born under this domain of darkness, under this judgment, because of the fall in the Garden of Eden. When the first man and woman yielded to the deceiver, they disobeyed their Creator God, who warned them not to eat the fruit of the tree that would kill them. Their spirits died when they ate it which bound them under the dark domain. They died spiritually while their physical bodies lived for a while. 

The entire human race is born in this condition because everything reproduces after its own kind, whether its apples, dogs, fish, or fallen human beings. The first man and woman, bound under the dark domain, destined their children, and the human race, to be under the rule of this dark domain and its judgment.

In this fallen condition the first reaction to doing wrong is to stay in the darkness—to hide rather than admit to the wrong. This is the root of pride.

Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loin coverings. They heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the gardenGenesis 3:7-8.

They lost the glory of God as their covering, became full of shame, and hid. The awareness of their sin caused them to hide from God.

So what about the Kingdom of Light?

Every kingdom has a king. Jesus is Lord and King in this kingdom of light. But He is also our priest. A priest is a mediator between man and God. Without Him we would have no access to God. We would be forever bound under the domain of darkness. But He came and offered Himself as the sacrifice for sin in our place. The price He had to pay for rescuing us was His own blood.

In the days of His flesh, He offered up both prayers and supplications with loud crying and tears to the One able to save Him from death, and He was heard because of His piety. Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered. And having been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation, being designated by God as a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek. Hebrews 5:7-10

When Jesus was here on the earth in the flesh, he offered up prayers to God, the One who could have saved Him from death. Jesus wasn’t looking forward to the death on the cross that He knew He would face to pay for our sin. He could have asked God to call off the whole plan and leave mankind under the domain of darkness and all the torment that goes with that. But instead, Jesus submitted His will to the Father’s. And as a result of His obedience, He became the source of our eternal salvation.

During His agonizing prayers in the Garden of Gethsemane before His death on the cross, Jesus submitted His will to the will of the Father in heaven (Luke 22:42). This is the foundation of the kingdom of Light. The kingdom of Light is a kingdom of submission—willful submission—to the will of the Father. In the kingdom of darkness you are under submission to that dark kingdom against your will. You can’t ever leave without the rescue of God through Jesus Christ.

When Jesus taught His disciples to pray He said “Your kingdom come. Your will be done.” (Matthew 6:9-10). Once again, the kingdom of Light, the kingdom of God’s Son, is a kingdom of willful submission to the Father.

Jesus told His disciples if anyone wanted to follow Him, (follow Him out of the domain of darkness and into His kingdom of Light) then he would have to take up his cross on a daily basis and follow Him. (Matthew 16:24-25). Like Jesus, our cross is the place of death to our own will and submission to the Father’s. However, unlike Jesus we don’t offer ourselves in physical death, but as a living sacrifice. (We don’t kill ourselves physically!)

Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:1-2.

Paul the apostle urged the church to present their bodies a living and holy sacrifice to God. Instead of conforming to the world (the world which is under the rule of the dark domain) he said to be transformed by the renewing of the mind. In so doing they would prove the will of God. 

The apostle Peter wrote that those who enter God's kingdom are themselves a kingdom, and priests unto our God. He called the followers of Jesus a royal priesthood.

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; for you once were not a people, but now you are the people of God; you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. 1 Peter 2:9-10.

Peter also said that Jesus bore our own sin in His body on the cross. Our sin is what wounded Him physically and killed Him. Yet, by those very same wounds we are healed.

and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed. 1 Peter 2:24.

Notice the purpose of our healing is so we may die to sin and live to righteousness. So we are not bound by sin under the rule of darkness, but free to fulfill our purpose in the kingdom of Light.

But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Matthew 6:33.

When we seek His kingdom and His righteousness first above everything else, then all of the things we need for the body, whether food, drink, clothing, extended life (healing), or whatever provision needed for us to live the life we are called to life, is provided for. 

God wants our hearts, our desires, our time and attention, but not by force. He wants us to willingly give them to Him. 

Taking the role of a bond-servant

A bond-servant is one who willingly chooses to serve his master. Jesus was called a bond-servant:

Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Philippians 2:5-11

Jesus didn’t try to hold on to His position of equality with God. Instead He took on the form of a bond-servant, He came to earth as a man, emptied Himself of the benefits of His divinity, so He could suffer and die for our sins.

Choose a Kingdom

Which kingdom would you rather serve in—one who keeps you captive, is completely unable to provide for your eternal life, keeps you in bondage and torment under a motivation of hate, and takes out his wrath toward God on you?  Or would you rather serve a loving heavenly Father whose Son came willingly to die for you so you could enter His kingdom and enjoy the benefits of life, love, healing, provision, and fellowship with the God, serving in a royal kingdom as a priest unto a loving, all powerful Creator God?

It really is your choice. But the choice is limited to either staying bound under the control of darkness or freely entering the kingdom of light and love. There is no other plan. And there is no way out of the kingdom of darkness except through Jesus Christ. 

The apostle Paul described his pursuit of Jesus as this:

that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:10-14.

Jesus reached into the dark kingdom and laid hold of us for a reason. Paul said he pressed on so that he could discover what that reason was and fulfill it. He wanted to lay hold of that for which Jesus laid hold of him. He continued to press on toward this goal, for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ. In the kingdom of God, there is a reward, but in the domain of darkness under satan there is bondage and death.

The prophet Jeremiah revealed the heart of God when he said:

For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11

And the psalmist described God’s thorough knowledge of us, who we are, who He made us to be, and His beautiful plans for us as our Creator:

For You formed my inward parts;
You wove me in my mother’s womb.
 will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well.
My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth;
Your eyes have seen my unformed substance;
And in Your book were all written
The days that were ordained for me,
When as yet there was not one of them.

Psalm 139:13-16


The Lord’s Prayer:

"“Pray, then, in this way:

‘Our Father who is in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
‘Your kingdom come.
Your will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven.
‘Give us this day our daily bread.
‘And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
‘And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. [For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’]"

Matthew 6:9-13






Wednesday, October 25, 2023

Is it Fixable? Part Two of "Inevitable or Preventable"


In the last blog, Inevitable or Preventable, I brought up the importance of knowing the difference between what is inevitable and what is preventable. The point being that our actions will be different as God reveals which is which. When He does, we can prepare for what is inevitable or prevent what is preventable as we follow His lead.

In that post I made the comment that we don’t want to waste our time trying to prevent those things that are inevitable. However, it’s important to understand that even if we feel we can't prevent those things, we can still stand against them. For example if some bad thing is inevitable—like the passage of a certain law—We are not wasting our time to speak up or try and do what we can to stop it. We must always stand for truth and righteousness. Psalm 94:16.

In Luke 17:1 Jesus said to His disciples, "It is inevitable that stumbling blocks come, but woe to him through whom they come!" Certain things are inevitable, but we don't want to be the one that opens the door to those things, participates in them, condones them, or remains silent about them. And we don’t want to have the attitude that we are to just sit back and let it run rampant—Que sera sera, whatever will be, will be. We always want to shine as a light, speak truth, sound the alarm when appropriate, and ask the Lord to show us any part of a seemingly inevitable event we can prevent, along with what and how.

And of course, we don't want to be one who did not discern that it could have been prevented.

What is Fixable?

So, what about those things that have already happened that could have been prevented but weren't?

I think everyone would agree that there are things that happen that we don’t like and didn’t intend to happen. The same is true of God. Since the fall of man there have been things happening on earth that God never intended. Even though He knew they would, for He planned for the solution, His preference would have been for mankind to avoid certain things from happening altogether. Cain killing Abel, the wickedness in Noah’s day, The enslavement of His people, the perversity in Sodom and Gomorrah, the sacrifice of children to a false god, to name a few. We could go on and on through century after century looking at things that happened that God never intended to happen.

These things happen because of the fallen nature within man—the pride and rebellion implanted in the human heart as a result of mankind’s rejection of God’s words and following the words of the rebellious deceiver instead. This had consequence in the Garden and still does today.

These consequences are things that have happened that God never intended, things that could have been prevented if His people would have listened to Him and followed His words. Not all that is happening today was inevitable. Some of it was preventable.

So the question now becomes what is fixable? Is anything fixable? Or are we stuck with these consequences? If so, for how long? What do we do now that we see what was wrong and could have, and should have, been prevented?

God’s answer first and foremost is always to repent. To turn from the wickedness, from the rebellion, from the disobedience to His Word, and turn to Him. To humble ourselves before Him, to seek Him, to follow Him, to acknowledge that His way is the only way—to make Jesus Lord of our lives, and all that that entails.
"(If) My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal their land." (2 Chronicles 7:14)

There were times God’s people were in such a mess that there was no human solution. Surrounded by armies, besieged, in seemingly impossible situations—seemingly unfixable situations—yet when they turned to God He prevailed over their enemies and rescued them. It happened over and over until they turned so far against Him and hardened their heart so much against Him that they were taken into captivity. Thus it was proven that a Savior who would change the heart of man would be the only way to save him.

From the beginning, God had a plan of redemption for all of mankind. He sent His Son Jesus to pay the ultimate price and restore back to God those who believe in Him.

Is it fixable? It depends on what the “it” is. The human heart, which tends toward hatred, rebellion, pride, selfishness, and so on, is fixable, but only through faith in Jesus Christ, who shed His blood for us so we could be born again into His new nature, filled with His Spirit and hearts which tend toward righteousness.

And that is the first and most important step toward fixing anything else in the world.

Thursday, September 28, 2023

Inevitable or Preventable?


A few times over the last week or so I've felt the questions rise within me, "Is it inevitable or is it preventable? (without knowing what the "it" was), and, "are we to prepare or to prevent?"

While asking the Lord for further insight on this He prompted me to rephrase the question and to ask instead, “What is inevitable and what is preventable?” and then “what and how do we prepare for what is inevitable, and what and how do we prevent what can be prevented?”

Inevitable means, “not to be avoided…unavoidable…no escape or evasion.”1
Preventable means, “...may be prevented or hindered.”2

There are some things coming that we will need to prepare for and some things we will be called to prevent. Our actions will be different based on whether the coming event is, in God’s eyes, inevitable or preventable. It’s important to note that the verdict of which is which is based on what God says is inevitable and what God says is preventable, not what we (or any other person) thinks or says about it.

So the questions become:

  • What is coming, (that the Lord will reveal to us)?
  • What is inevitable?
  • What can be prevented?
  • How do we tell the difference?
  • What do we do to prevent or prepare for each one? and
  • How do we prevent or prepare?

What is Inevitable

Concerning what is inevitable, ask the Lord how much of that He will reveal. He most likely will not reveal all of it to us, especially all at once, and especially that which doesn’t concern us. However, there are some things that are inevitable that we may still ask Him to reveal. In fact, we should seek Him for those things because He may not reveal them until we ask.

Why do we ask Him to show us what is inevitable if it’s just going to happen no matter what? So we can prepare, both for ourselves and others. And so we don’t waste our time trying to prevent what is inevitable when we could and should be working to prevent what is preventable and prepare for what is inevitable. Only He can tell us which is which—what to prepare for and what to prevent, and it may be different for different people.

The bigger danger, I think, is not being unaware of what is inevitable (as devastating as that might be) but its more dangerous (and you could say irresponsible on our part) when we assume that something is inevitable when it is not, when it is actually preventable. When we hear of something coming, or He shows us something to come, we must not automatically assume it is inevitable. We need to go to Him and talk to Him about it.

We sometimes underestimate what God has called us to do as His ekklesia—His governing body in the earth. All things are not inevitable, there are things that are preventable when His church takes their place in the kingdom as we are called.

What is Preventable

If something is preventable we need to find out from Him what our place and part is concerning it. Then seek Him on how to be equipped, and then actually ask for that equipping. Once again, He may very well not show us, or equip us, until we ask. Initiate a conversation with Him about these things, including:

  • Revelation about what is to come
  • Discernment to know what is inevitable and what is preventable
  • Wisdom, knowledge, and equipping to prepare for the inevitable
  • Wisdom, knowledge, and equipping to prevent what we can prevent

 In any case, never fear for He is with you always, no matter what is coming!


1 https://webstersdictionary1828.com/Dictionary/Inevitable
2 https://webstersdictionary1828.com/Dictionary/preventable



Saturday, September 2, 2023

Forgiveness Check-up


Do you ever struggle to forgive someone? Do you feel so obligated to forgive a person quickly that you mumble your forgiveness without a real sincerity? Let's take a look at the process of forgiveness as Jesus described it. 

Luke 17:3-4
3 Be on your guard! If your brother sins, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. 4 And if he sins against you seven times a day, and returns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ forgive him.”

Jesus was talking to His disciples when He said if your brother repents of his sin to forgive him, even if he sins against you seven times in one day, if he comes to you and repents then forgive him. Notice He said, “if he repents.” So if your brother or sister in Christ comes to you in repentance, seeking forgiveness for a wrong they’ve done, you are to forgive them.

But what if they don’t come to you in repentance?

First, let’s clarify that if your brother doesn’t come to you and repent then that doesn’t mean you don’t “forgive” him. 

Forgiveness is a relational thing. It takes two people. According to what Jesus said here you can't really “forgive” a person if they don’t come to you and repent. In the same way that you can’t withdraw money from your bank account if you don’t ask the bank for it. It’s there, it’s available to you, but if you don’t go through the process of requesting it then the bank won’t just randomly give it to you. They don’t even know you want it. In the same way, if a person who has wronged you doesn’t come to you and ask for forgiveness you can’t give it to him. They have got to go through the process of requesting it—to come to you and repent.

However, that doesn’t mean that you hang on to unforgiveness if he hasn’t repented. That doesn’t mean that you hold on to bitterness and seek vengeance. You deal with all of that (hopefully) at the time the sin is committed, (or when you find out about it). 

Paul said in 1 Corinthians 13:5 that love “does not take into account a wrong suffered.” Love will not allow any bitterness or resentment to remain in your heart when someone wrongs you or sins against you. Neither will it seek vengeance or revenge on a person who wrongs you.

Romans 12:18-20 
18 If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men. 19 Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. 20 “But if your enemy is hungry, feed him, and if he is thirsty, give him a drink; for in so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.”

We sometimes call forgiveness the thing that we do when we determine we will not become bitter or seek revenge on a person who wrongs us. Or we call forgiveness the thing that we do when we have held on to bitterness and then come to point where we realize we need to let go of our bitterness toward that person. But really, that is simply guarding our own heart against sin and determining that we will walk in love and not take account of the wrong(s) we suffer because of another person’s sin. We call it forgiveness, but it's more accurate to say we are keeping our own heart pure before God, and remaining in His love, which puts us in a position where we stand ready to forgive if/when they ask. Forgiveness is what we do toward them when they come to us in repentance asking for our forgiveness.

The reason I think this distinction is important is because there is a process we go through to come to the point of keeping bitterness and revenge out of our heart. When someone sins against us, we might be able to let it roll off of us without a problem. But there are times we may need to take a minute to acknowledge a wrong done toward us and go to the Lord about it. We may need to talk to the Lord to gain understanding about the person, what they did, or the situation in general. We might need healing from wounds caused by the person's sin. We might need to examine our heart to see if we’ve done anything wrong. This takes a little time, prayer, and thought to work through, but when we feel that we have to immediately “forgive” a person (or God won’t forgive us) then we may bypass this important process of healing, self-examination, and seeking the Lord for His perspective.

Now that we understand what we can do right away when we are wronged to keep our hearts right, let's look again at what Jesus said:

Luke 17:3-4
3 Be on your guard! If your brother sins, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. 4 And if he sins against you seven times a day, and returns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ forgive him.”

Notice Jesus first said if your brother sins to rebuke him.

Again this is relational, so you don’t go around rebuking every Christian you know for what you perceive to be sin in their life. There was a woman who came to our church once who told us of a time she visited a church with her two young children. Before the service even started some women came up to her and told her they had already found four things wrong with her. That is not what Jesus meant here and I would guess that not one of those four things was actually sin.

So we don't want to go around looking for faults in every Christian we see. Yet with those we have a relationship with, the best course of action to take when they sin against us is to talk to them about it and address it (See Matthew 18:15-22, Galatians 6:1, James 5:16, 20). Try to clear the air right away. Ideally, we want the relationship restored. Sometimes that’s not possible. But in any case, we still do what we need to so we keep our own hearts pure and ready to forgive.

Forgiving as Christ has Forgiven us

Paul said we are to forgive our brothers and sisters as Christ has forgiven us (Ephesians 4:32, Colossians 3:13). 

How has He forgiven us? Jesus came and died so we could be forgiven of our sins and made righteous. Yet it doesn’t happen without our coming to Him in repentance asking for His forgiveness and His salvation. Then, once we are born again into His family, we walk with Him endeavoring to keep His Word and not sin. But if we sin, we confess it to Him, and seek His forgiveness.

John said if we confess our sins He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9).

Asking for forgiveness brings us into relationship with the Father through Jesus Christ and it keeps us in relationship with Him even if we sin after we have experienced His salvation. He provided for our forgiveness by dying on the cross and He is not holding our sin against us (2 Corinthians 5:19). Jesus took our sin on the cross and paid the price. He presents us before the Father without spot (sin, defect) or blemish (original sin).

In the same way, we do not personally hold our brother’s sin against them. We do not hold bitterness in our heart against them or seek their demise. Yet the act of forgiveness doesn’t happen until they ask for it, and we let them know we have forgiven them, having genuinely kept our hearts pure from anything which would result in unforgiveness. In our minds, and heart, we have already forgiven them, it’s ready and waiting for them as we’ve already gone through the process of forgiving them before the Lord—a process that might have included healing, correction, a strengthening, and/or gaining understanding on our part first.

Stephen asked the Lord not to hold the sin (of stoning him) against those who were stoning him (Acts 7:60). God is the one who forgives sin, and though Stephen wouldn’t be around to forgive them if any of his murderers repented later on, at the time of his death he did “forgive” them by keeping his heart free from seeking vengeance and letting the Lord know he did not want anything to be held against them on his behalf.

We do not have to, nor should we, wait for a person to come to us in repentance before we "forgive" them. We prepare our hearts now.

What About Retaining Sins?

John 20:21-23
21 So Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you; as the Father has sent Me, I also send you.” 22 And when He had said this, He breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive the sins of any, their sins have been forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they have been retained.”

According to Strong’s Concordance the word retain is the Greek word krateo which most often in the NASB version is translated seize or seized. It’s also translated to hold, hold fast, take hold in various forms or arrested.  The word means to be strong, rule.

Keeping the thought in mind that you don’t technically forgive someone until they come to you seeking forgiveness (even though you’ve determined not to hold on to bitterness or a vengeful heart), we might look at this action of retaining sins as something that occurs if a person is seeking forgiveness for a sin but wants to continue in it. In other words, they are seeking permission or tolerance of the sin, not true forgiveness. They want “forgiveness” and fellowship among the brethren, but not through repentance.

There are times that sins are to be “seized” or “arrested.” It is to be ruled over and put in its proper place. We are to declare what God has already judged about sin—that it is not to be allowed to freely operate in the church, among believers. It is to be rebuked, not tolerated.

So what this means is that by our forgiveness we are not saying we condone someone continuing in sin. We seize that sin, arrest it, address it and confront it in our brother or sister. More important than restoring their relationship with us is the restoration of their relationship with God.

 So What to Do?

To check up on yourself, go before the Lord and talk to Him about anything you may be holding in your heart against another person who has wronged you. Ask for healing if needed, ask for understanding, and receive any correction He gives you. Remember that His love has been poured out in your heart by the Holy Spirit (Romans 5:5). Remind yourself of His love for you and receive it fully because receiving His love is what gives you the ability to love others (1 John 4:19). Ask Him for forgiveness for anything in your heart that you are holding against anyone else. You do not need to wait to be free from the pain that their sin has caused you. You can be free right now.

If that person does come to you in repentance, asking for forgiveness, then you will be ready and willing to do so because you already have in your heart. They may never repent and ask for forgiveness. Some may have passed away and others just might never seek your forgiveness, but in any case you are not bound or wounded by their sin anymore. You are free from that sin and the rippling affects of it.

Monday, August 21, 2023

Created on Purpose


Say this today:
"God created me on purpose,
because He wanted to.
I am not a mistake.
I am not a disappointment.
I am wanted and loved.

He predestined me to be conformed to the image of Jesus.
I have a future and hope in Christ.
I press on so I may lay hold of that which I also was laid hold of by Christ Jesus.
I reject all rejection.
God created me because He wanted me.

I have a place and a purpose.
He has poured His love out on me,
in me,
and through me.
I receive it all.

The Love of God Within You

"...the love

 "...the love of God has been poured out within our hearts
 through the Holy Spirit who was given to us."
 Romans 5:5

"We love because He first loved us." 
1 John 4:19

God never intended for His love that has been poured out within us to immediately flow out to others without it first doing a work within us.

Allow His love to forgive you, cleanse you, heal you, restore you, and become a part of you.

Then you can love others as yourself and love your brothers and sisters in Christ as He has loved you. 


Wednesday, May 10, 2023

My White Horse and the Rider's Cloud

 Press Release

Contact: Rose Murdock
Email: Connect@Bibleseed.org
(248) 923-0524

Author’s Fourth Book is an Imaginative Fictional Fantasy Adventure with a Delightful Spiritual Twist

Xulon Press presents exciting, thought-provoking fiction; a story with a unique perspective on biblical truths that will be appreciated by believers and non-believers.


Rose Murdock presents compelling fiction with spiritual principles for readers of any age to enjoy in My White Horse: And the Rider's Cloud ($22.49, paperback, 9781662878312; $9.99, e-book, 9781662878329).

 Murdock takes readers on an adventure through the clouds and into a fascinating realm outside of time and space; a place where each visitor is given a new name and a white horse. The story unfolds as members of one family explore this new world on their own, unknowingly meeting one another along the way. After an encounter with a mysterious “Rider,” the family grows to know and love this person, remaining unaware of his important role in their destinies. Readers will be delighted as truth begins to be unveiled and their belief in this mysterious one grows as they seek to know him for who he really is.

 When asked what inspired this author to write this book, Murdock said, “I started developing the characters for this book through writing a series of short stories for my granddaughter. Then after having dreams about a white horse, I combined the stories and dreams into a book. Of course, the basic premise is Revelation 19:14.”

Rose Murdock is also the author of Living in the Land of Your Anointing, The Epistles Pen and The Good Wine: Miracle at Cana. For more information about the author, her blog, her books and more, visit Bibleseed.org.

Xulon Press, a division of Salem Media Group, is the world’s largest Christian self-publisher, with more than 15,000 titles published to date. My White Horse: And the Rider's Cloud is available online through xulonpress.com/bookstore, amazon.com, and barnesandnoble.com.

Sunday, March 26, 2023

Knowing by the Spirit

2 Corinthians 5:16:

16 Therefore from now on we recognize no one according to the flesh; even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him in this way no longer.

Paul said they no longer knew Christ according to the flesh, even though they, (not Paul but the other apostles), did once know Him in the flesh. Those who knew Jesus when He was here on Earth, didn’t continue to base their relationship with Him on a fleshly level once He died and was resurrected. In the same way, Paul said, they didn’t recognize anyone according to the flesh—whether they were Jew or Gentile, rich or poor etc.

So how did they know Christ, and others, if not through their fleshly relationships? By the spirit.

1 Corinthians 2:11:

11 For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so the thoughts of God no one knows except the Spirit of God.

No one knows the mind of a man except the spirit that is in him. And no one knows the mind of God except the Spirit of God. The only way to know God is through His Spirit. The only way to know people is through their spirit. If we want to know God’s thoughts, we have to know His Spirit, and the same is true with people. (It’s worth noting that when we come across people who are filled with the Spirit of God, we already “know” them to a certain degree because we share the same Spirit).

So, if we are to get to know someone by their spirit, how do we find out what is in their spirit?

Matthew 12:34-35

34 …the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart. 35 The good man brings out of his good treasure what is good; and the evil man brings out of his evil treasure what is evil.

You know what is in a person’s heart by what they say. This is how you get to know people, through talking with them—through words. We get to know God through His Word as well.

John 6:63:

63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.

Jesus’ words are spirit and life. Words are spiritual. They reveal the spirit they come from. Jesus’ words give life because He is life (John 14:6) and comes from the Father of life. We come to know Him and His life through His words.

John 6:67-69:

67 So Jesus said to the twelve, “You do not want to go away also, do you?” 68 Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. 69 We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God.”

Peter told Jesus that they knew He had the words of eternal life. Through these words they had come to know and believe that He is the Holy One of God—the Messiah. They came to know Him through His Word.

John 14:25-26:

25 “These things I have spoken to you while abiding with you. 26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.

While Jesus was here in the flesh He spoke directly to His disciples, but once He ascended to the Father, the Holy Spirit came in His place. The Holy Spirit teaches us and reminds us of all that Jesus has said and done. We know Jesus, and the Father, through the Spirit, and the words which reveal His Spirit. We get to know our brothers and sisters in Christ this same way—by getting to know their spirit, through their words which reveal their spirit.

In the Garden, Adam and Eve walked and talked with God daily, but when they sinned, they didn't want to talk to Him. They didn’t want Him to know what they had done. They knew their words would give away what just happened, and they did (Genesis 3:8-11).

Matthew 7:21-23

21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. 22 Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’

These ones that the Lord will tell to depart from Him, even though they did miracles and prophesied in His name, are those whom He doesn’t know. Those He never knew. Those who are not of the same Spirit as He is. They are those who practice lawlessness—who sin—those who do not do the will of the Father.

The Lord knows those who do the will of the Father—who keep His Word. These are the ones He knows. He doesn’t know a person just because they use His name to prophesy, cast out demons or do miracles.

If we want a relationship with the Lord where we know Him and He knows us, we need to spend time in prayer—walking and talking with Him—to get to know each other. We know Him through His Word; and by keeping His Word He knows us, recognizing that we are of the same Spirit.

Consider these verses from the gospel of John:

John 15:

4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me.

We are to abide in Him, and He in us if we are to bear fruit.

6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire and they are burned. 7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.

If we abide in Him AND His words abide in us, our prayers are answered. We become fruitful. Those not abiding in Him are thrown away as a branch that has dried up.

8 My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples.

The Father is glorified when we bear much fruit, and in so doing we prove we are His disciples.

10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.

12 “This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you.

When we keep His commandments, we remain in His love, and His commandment is to love each other as He has loved us.

Once again, by spending time daily with the Lord, abiding in Him, allowing His Words to abide in us, we will develop a relationship with the Lord, come to know Him more intimately, bear fruit which glorifies the Father, and ensure that He knows and us, recognizing that the same Spirit which is in us is in Him.

Loving the Unseen God

 1 John 4:20:

20 If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen.

What does this mean?

When John wrote that one who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen, he didn't mean we must love what is seen (your brother) first before we can love God. We know this is true because Jesus said the first commandment is to love God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength, and the second commandment is to love your neighbor as yourself. (Matthew 22:35-40). We are to love God first, then others.

Yet John is saying that we can’t say we love God if we don’t love our brothers and sisters in Christ, or we’d be lying. Why is this?

Because if we love God, we’ll keep His commandments.

John 14:15:

15 “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.

What is His commandment?

John 15:12:

12 “This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you.

So if we love God, we will keep His commandments to both love Him (Matthew 22:37) and each other (John 15:12). If we don’t love each other then we are not keeping His commandment, and if we don’t keep His commandment then we don’t love Him.

Simply put, our love for God is evidenced by our love for our brothers and sisters in Christ.

John 13:35:

35 By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”

Everyone will be able to tell we are disciples of Jesus by our love for other believers.

However, this kind of love is a sincere love, not just hypocritical deeds to make it look like we’re a good Christian. The proper motive for loving other believers is that we are doing so because we love God and want to keep His commandments.

1 John 5:2:

2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and observe His commandments.

In other words, when we love God, and love others out of obedience to Him, then we know that we really do love His children. We have the proper motive. Our love is genuine.

Yet remember, it’s not just the appearance of love that is evidence of our love for God, but genuine love which comes from loving God first. This will only work if our love for the Lord remains alive.

Matthew 22:37-39:

37 And He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the great and foremost commandment. 39 The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’

Notice the order Jesus gives. We are to love God first, then people. If we love any person before God, then we have placed an idol before God. They have become an idol in our lives, something worshiped above God Himself. They will take a higher priority in our time, money, etc. God is a jealous God, and this does not set well with Him!

When we place people as a higher priority in our lives above God, then even our prayers can become manipulative as we seek the will of the person we are praying for above the will of God.

As always, it’s important to look at our heart motives in the things we do, including our love for others. On the one hand, we don’t want our love for people to take a higher priority over our love for God. Yet on the other hand, our love for people is evidence that we love God.

Taking time daily to revive our love for God through intimate time with Him in worship and prayer will help us guard against this kind of idolatry and keep our motives pure.

Monday, March 20, 2023

The Fruit of Faithfulness

I believe God is cultivating the fruit of faithfulness in His Church. I believe the lack of it has been why we have not seen certain victories we'd like to. I believe He's teaching us:

  • Faithfulness over rebellion. 
  • Humility and submission to His will over brute force. 
  • Proper prioritization, patience, and peace. 
  • True faith and trust in Him. 
  • Not to fight with stubbornness, thinking it’s our stubborn "faith" that will win a battle.
  • We need faithfulness —loyalty to Him, no matter what comes our way.
God cares about our heart and priorities which is why we need to hear from Him and be faithful to that.

Stubbornness is from the root of pride, and rebellion. Faithfulness is from humility and submission to the will of God. Faithfulness goes a lot farther in dispersing the enemy out of areas he has illegally occupied because its backed by the Spirit and power of God. We speak the Word of God in faith, or faithfulness. We are faithful to His Spirit and to His true intention of those words.

Stubbornness is a false faith. It’s forcefully exerting our will over another’s. It takes a lot of energy, and it will wear you out. If we get our way as a result of this false faith, then our pride and rebellion are reinforced. It’s the mercy of God that we don’t get “answers” to our “prayers” when we’re operating in this kind of stubbornness.

The goal of the antichrist spirit is to exalt another’s will above God’s (or anyone else’s). This is witchcraft as well as rebellion. A message which puts greater priority on people seeking things they want above seeking God’s leading falls into this category and is flat out wrong.

There was a lot of preaching back in the 1970-1980’s by people who looked down on those who said, “If it be Your will” when they prayed. They were sometimes ridiculed. Of course, some were saying that to replace seeking God’s will, more as an excuse or a way to place blame when things didn’t work out right. But in spite of those errors, our intention should always be for God’s will to be done above ours. Jesus confirmed in the garden before He died that He was committed to God’s will being done rather than His own (Luke 22:42). If you don’t know the will of God, consider that an invitation to ask Him, but don’t assume that your will is automatically His, or that you know what His will is in each situation without seeking Him first.

Some of those preachers back then, and even today, were sincere in their efforts to get people to know the will of God and pray it boldly, without doubt. But some were actually feeding their own lusts and encouraging others to do the same. And some went farther than that and took advantage of Christians with out-of-control lusts using that for their own selfish purposes.

In any case, many listeners to these messages were not strong enough in their faithfulness to God to resist the temptation to believe they could get whatever they wanted if they just stuck it out long enough—if they just had stubborn faith. These words preached to them were planted in an immature, covetous, or lustful heart and produced stubborn “fruit,” a false “faith,” not the fruit of the Spirit which is faithfulness. We must be emptied of all stubborn selfishness and sinful cravings of the flesh to keep from falling into this kind of deception and error.

Stubborn “faith” takes a lot of energy. When Saul when was persecuting Christians, he thought he was working for God, pleasing God, but he was really opposing him. In Acts 26:14 the Lord told him it is hard to kick against the goads. Fighting God takes a lot of energy. Some people today are getting burned out. They are fighting many battles in their own strength. Political battles. Other battles. They are getting worn out fighting God, or an enemy on the wrong battlefield. They may think they have a determined faith when in reality they’re kicking against the goads or in a battle they were not sent to fight.

When things are difficult we must discern whether it's because we’re engaging the enemy we were sent to confront, or whether it’s because we’re fighting God. If we’re on the wrong battlefield He will tell us, and draw us back to Him. If we don't respond to Him, then we end up fighting Him. We need discernment. 

We might think we’re engaging the enemy when all we’re doing is trying to fight him in our own strength. Our motivation is not that we were sent by the Spirit into this battle, but that we are angry, fearful, full of despair, or just arrogant enough that we refuse to do anything that would look like retreat. Complete surrender to God and His way is what we need to “win” our battles. And winning to God often looks different than what winning looks like to us.

Any teaching which sends the message that if you just had real faith, you would always get what you want, rather than focusing on how to hear the Spirit of God reveal the will of God to you, cultivates stubbornness and rebellion in a person. It’s like tares sown among wheat. When a vulnerable person hears this, especially a new believer, they are not receiving the true message of the Gospel. Once a child is spoiled on candy, it’s hard to get them to eat their vegetables. They will end up viewing God as their servant, expecting Him to give them everything they want just like a spoiled child. The sad thing is, this causes great harm to themselves and to the body of Christ.

New believers need to be taught that not only are they entering a family with an inheritance when they are born-again, but they are entering a kingdom, an army. They are soldiers. They will be inconvenienced at times. It will be hard at times. Yes, Father God will bring them through the tough battles, but if the enemy can keep them off the battlefield while looking for the pleasures of life, or lead them to the wrong battlefield altogether, they’ll be fighting the air, wearing themselves out, and not accomplishing anything for the kingdom of God in their lives or others, despite their best efforts.

Let’s respond to God cultivating the fruit of faithfulness in us. The body of Christ needs this fruit maybe more than we ever have before. Let us pray, “Your kingdom come, Your will be done.” (Matthew 6:10). Let’s find out the gardens and battlefields He wants us to work in, and then do what He says. He’s not going to neglect taking care of us. We don’t have to worry about that. If we seek His kingdom and His righteousness first, all of that will be taken care of (Matthew 6:33).

Sunday, February 5, 2023

Healing from the Wounds of Sin


Numbers 21:4-5

4Then they set out from Mount Hor by the way of the Red Sea, to go around the land of Edom; and the people became impatient because of the journey. 5The people spoke against God and Moses, “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? For there is no food and no water, and we loathe this miserable food.”

The Israelites had been miraculously delivered from slavery in Egypt and were heading towards the Promised Land--the land God had promised to give to the descendants of Abraham whom He had entered into covenant with. However, they became impatient along the way--many times. In this case they also spoke against God and Moses. They called the manna God miraculously provided for food "miserable" and said they loathed it. Unfortunately, complaints had become common with them on this journey.

Prior to this incident, a generation of them had already become destined to die in the wilderness because of their unbelief that God could give them the Promised Land that He said He had given them. Twelve spies were sent to check out the land and ten of them came back and said they couldn't take it. The giants in the land were too big. God determined at that time that they would die in the wilderness, all except for the two spies who said they could take it--Joshua and Caleb. The rest would die and their children would be the ones to possess the land (Numbers 13-14).

On another occasion they complained about the manna, missing the food in Egypt, and saying they wanted meat. The Lord sent them enough quail to last for a month. However, people became greedy and while the meat was still in their mouth  they were struck with a severe plague and died (Numbers 11).

God was in covenant with the Israelites but they didn't seem to understand that covenants are not one-sided. They were to be participants in this covenant. They had an important part in God's purposes in the Earth. They were to carry the oracles of God and birth the Messiah who would save the nations. Yet, their slavery mentality kept them in bondage. They were in a habit of complaining about their captors--those in authority over them. After being delivered from slavery they continued complaining, yet with the complaints directed towards God and Moses instead of the Egyptians.

Early on in the Israelites journey out of Egypt, they came to Marah where they found the waters were bitter. They couldn't drink it and they complained. Moses cried out to the Lord who showed him a tree. Moses threw the tree into the water and they became sweet so the people could drink. At that same place, the Lord made a statute and a regulation that if the Israelites would listen to Him, hear His commandments, keep all His statutes and do what is right in His sight, then He would not put any of the diseases on them that He did the Egyptians. (Exodus 15:22-27). 

He would provide for them, but they would have to listen to Him and do what He says. He was teaching them what it was like to be in covenant.

Now, back to what happened after they complained and spoke against God and Moses:

Numbers 21:6-9

6The Lord sent fiery serpents among the people and they bit the people, so that many people of Israel died. 7So the people came to Moses and said, “We have sinned, because we have spoken against the Lord and you; intercede with the Lord, that He may remove the serpents from us.” And Moses interceded for the people. 8Then the Lord said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent, and set it on a standard; and it shall come about, that everyone who is bitten, when he looks at it, he will live.” 9And Moses made a bronze serpent and set it on the standard; and it came about, that if a serpent bit any man, when he looked to the bronze serpent, he lived.

After these serpents came, the people recognized that they had done wrong and repented. They asked Moses to pray and remove the serpents. However, instead of removing them God told Moses to set a serpent on a pole for them to look at after being bitten, and they would be healed. So he made a bronze serpent and set it up on a pole. A type of Jesus up on the cross.

These serpents are an example of how sin wounds. Sin poisons. Your sin wounds you, your sin can wound others, and other's sins can wound you. The serpents were like the manifestation of their sin and the damage it caused. Like an object lesson, God was showing them what their heart attitude and their words were doing to them--it was poisoning them and killing them.

So, they repented. They had done this many times before and knew what to do when things didn't go right. Yet it seems that their repentance had been very shallow. They would repent, yet turn back and do the same thing again. However, this time they would have to "feel the pain" of their sin for a little while until they could get to the pole and be healed.

True repentance is painful. It's tempting to say a quick, "Please forgive me, Lord," prayer and not fully address a sin we have committed. If we keep doing this we end up searing our conscience which decreases our sensitivity to the voice of God. God wanted them, and wants us, to understand the importance of true repentance.

Dutch Sheets has a good teaching on the four-step process of repentance. Briefly summarized as: 

First we have remorse--sorrow. Sorrow because we feel the pain of that sin, not just because we "got caught." In the case of the Israelites, this was the pain of the snakebite.

Next is the revelation of the consequence of that sin and where it leads. What it does to you and others.

Then we have a more true repentance because of the remorse and understanding we've received about our sin.

Finally, we have the desired result--we turn from that sin and don't return back to it. Our repentance was not shallow, we walk away from that sin.

So, what do we do when we sin, and how do we recover completely from it?

We truly repent and receive forgiveness and cleansing from our sin. 

1 John 1:9

9If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

He forgives us and cleanses us when we confess our sins. Yet, we might still need to receive the healing, the recovery from this sin, and the strengthening from the weakness that it has caused. If we don't allow this full recovery, then our walk with the Lord can get out of alignment as we'll see in just a bit.

We might keep the wounds of our sin open thorough guilt. If we do not fully repent and/or fully receive God's forgiveness and cleansing, guilt will work against us like that poison from the snake.

Let's look at a New Testament Scripture to see how we must receive this full cleansing and healing so our walk stays in alignment:

Hebrews 12:1-13

1Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

3For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. 4You have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood in your striving against sin; 5and you have forgotten the exhortation which is addressed to you as sons,

“My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, Nor faint when you are reproved by Him; (Job 5:17) 6For those whom the Lord loves He disciplines, And He scourges every son whom He receives.” (Proverbs 3:12).

When we don’t understand that we must stand against sin at all costs, then He disciplines us for our own good, so we can live.

7It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? 8But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. 9Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live? 10For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness. 11All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.

God disciplines us for our own good. Our earthly fathers disciplined us and, though its not pleasant, we learned from it. How much more should we subject ourselves to our heavenly Father so we may share in His holiness, and live?

12Therefore, strengthen the hands that are weak and the knees that are feeble, 13and make straight paths for your feet, so that the limb which is lame may not be put out of joint, but rather be healed.

The context here is of overcoming sin, striving against it to the point of shedding our own blood if necessary, and receiving God's discipline when needed. In this context, we strengthen our weak hands and feeble knees. We make straight paths for our feet. We don't adjust our path to accommodate our lame limbs. We don't learn to live with our sin, or accept it as a character defect, or make excuses for it. No, we receive His strengthening and His healing so we are strong and aligned on our path--His righteous path.

 What do we do regarding other's sin against us?

We've been talking about when we sin, repent, and receive healing and strengthening from the wounds that were caused. But the same is true of other people's sin towards us. It wounds us, we forgive, and turn them over to God for Him to deal with them.

Forgiveness means we don't seek vengeance. If there is any resentment, unrighteous anger, bitterness, or even self-pity, we are keeping that wound open allowing the poison from the snake to remain in our system working against us. And if we don't fully forgive, then we get ourselves into sin and start that whole process again. It's not worth it. We need to address sin properly and completely so it doesn't keep a foothold in our life. Whether its sin we've committed, or the sin of others, it needs to be dealt with completely, once and for all, so as not to get us off balance and off track.

James 5:14-16 

14 Is anyone among you sick? Then he must call for the elders of the church and they are to pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord; 15 and the prayer offered in faith will restore the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up, and if he has committed sins, they will be forgiven him. 16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.

Every sickness is not caused by a person sinning. However, confession of sin, sickness, prayer, faith, anointing with oil, healing and forgiveness are all mentioned together here. Often there are connections. If there is any sickness, any nagging guilt, any lingering resentment, bitterness etc. going on in your life, its worth it to take some time examining your heart before the Lord to get these things resolved once and for all.

Psalm 51:7-10: “Purify me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Make me to hear joy and gladness, let the bones which You have broken rejoice. Hide Your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquities. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”

Examine your heart:

  • Think of anything regarding sin that bothers you, that isn't resolved. Whether it's sin you've committed, or sin others have committed against you.
  • It could be something you've done that has been a sin against God. Or something that has wounded or affected others. Or something you've done that has harmed yourself.
  • Even if you have already repented, you could still be carrying guilt in regard to this, or maybe you haven't fully repented.
  • Notice if you feel you haven't really repented and felt real sorrow over this sin. Ask the Lord to reveal the reality of those things so you can truly repent if necessary. So its not just a shallow repentance.
  • Take a moment because sometimes our conscience becomes calloused and we need to give these things time to surface.

  • If someone has sinned against you, notice if you feel you haven't really forgiven them.
  • If you think you have forgiven them, yet there is still be a wound causing pain, if there is still any anger, resentment, bitterness, or self-pity, it still needs to be addressed. Let go of the pain and fully forgive. Get the poison of the snake out of your system. Decide to forgive.

  • Ask the Lord to bring all these things to light and become aware of their reality. Ask Him to help you recognize the wounds that are still open. Even if its slight. If you think about something that happened and feel even just a twinge of a wound, address that while praying.
  • If you can't think of any specific sin that is left un-dealt with or that has left an unhealed wound, still pray for any strengthening that needs to occur in any vulnerable areas.


Father God, I come before You in the Name of Jesus.

Please show me any sin I have committed that I haven’t fully repented of. Show me the full consequence of this sin. Show me how I have hurt You, myself, or others. I am truly sorry for these sins. I repent and turn away from them. Please forgive me and cleanse me from all unrighteousness. I receive Your forgiveness and cleansing. I forgive myself. I let go of all guilt, or any pride, I might have had, in regards to any sin.

Also Father, please show me anyone who has wounded me, or sinned against me, that I haven’t truly forgiven. I forgive everyone who has sinned against me.  I turn them over to You, the Righteous Judge. I let go of all anger, resentment, bitterness, vengeance, criticism, self-pity, or any other ungodly attitude towards them.

Now Holy Father, I ask for Your healing, from any wounds caused by sin—my sin, or the sin of others. Heal me, spirit, soul, and body. Strengthen me where I’ve been weak, so the power of Christ dwells in me, and I can walk the straight path of Your will. I also ask for the healing, of those whom I have wounded by my sin.

I allow these wounds to be healed. I will not prevent their healing. I will not hold the wounds open, but allow full healing, and restoration, to take place, in Jesus’ Name. Amen.


Use anointing oils for cleansing, healing, and strengthening.