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Biblical Teaching

 

Does the Generational Curse Affect Christians Today?

 

Is there such a thing as a generational curse for Christians?

I have come across quite a few women lately who believe that generational curses affect Christians today, and that these curses need to be dealt with before change can occur. But is this true?

All too often, well-meaning believers simply take on board what they are taught. In an ideal world that would be commendable, but in a fallen world, where our old nature still exerts itself, we need to be careful. We should refer EVERYTHING to Scripture because that is what Jesus did. In Matthew 4:6-10, for example, He answered three times with the words, “It is written…”
Another example is that of certain Jews at Berea. When Paul spoke to them about Jesus Christ they did not believe him without “checking the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so” (Acts 17:11). And apparently they did find sufficient proof because many of them believed.

Talk of generational curses has become quite commonplace among certain Christian groups. The two big questions are, “Does this concept have biblical validity for members of the body of Christ?" And, "Can we find New Testament evidence for such terminology and practice?” This little study will help you find out for yourself. It is designed to lead sincere Christians into truth by searching Scripture for themselves.

When we search Scripture we cannot simply take a Bible text and apply it to every situation throughout all of history. We need to read the Bible contextually, i.e. place what we read into its immediate (chapter), surrounding (book) and overall (whole Bible) context. Today’s Christians need to be especially careful because many current teachings are not consistent with Bible truth in this contextual sense. In the case of generational curses, for example, we cannot automatically transport Old Testament references into today’s church context. We need to check both Old and New Testaments for occurrences of this concept and then make contextual comparisons.

If you want to find out for yourself, get out a concordance and do a word study. For those of you who don’t know what a concordance is, it’s a reference work that lists every English word of a specific Bible translation. Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance is particularly helpful because it also lists the original Greek or Hebrew words and has a dictionary. If you don’t have one, you can use a free online version at www.biblestudytools.com/concordances/strongs-exhaustive-concordance/ (this site hosts a variety of helpful study tools).

Prove to yourself that the New Testament does not mention generational curses or sins being visited on following generations! Look up the word ‘curse’ in all it’s forms in a concordance, and you will see that the New Testament does not support this erroneous teaching one bit!

Romans 12:1-2 tells us that we are to renew our minds according to Scripture (not according to the teachings and traditions of men). When you have done your own study, compare your findings with the following:

Exodus 20:5 and 34:7 - the curse was pronounced as part of the 10 commandments. Note: the curse is God’s response to idolatry.

Nu.14:18 and Deut. 5:98 refer to the same situation. The sins of the fathers are visited on their children to the 3rd & 4th generation.

Deut. 24:16 and other texts state that fathers are NOT to be put to death for their children and visa versa. This context refers to ‘sins unto death’, not idolatry in particular.

Jer. 31:27-34 also refers to the suffering of children for their fathers’ deeds, yet Jeremiah promises that this will change under the New Covenant!

The New Testament contains no references whatsoever regarding generational curses or sins being visited on following generations.

Such a concept is totally inconceivable in regard to the church (Christ's body) because the Bible clearly states that all believers receive the righteousness of Christ and are pronounced ‘not guilty’ in a judicial sense when they come to faith and are born again. At this time ALL of their sins are washed away and they embark on an extended journey from spiritual infanthood to adulthood. Along the way they are conformed to the image of Christ by the Holy Spirit (although never perfectly so) and are also chastised by God when necessary (for their benefit, learning, and guidance – see Hebrews). But they are never cursed, nor do they inherit a curse.

Think about it logically: if generational curses were still in operation today, based on the Scriptures we read and the New Testament principles that affect believers, these curses could only affect idolatrous non-believers, with the result that their following 3-4 generations would be prevented from becoming believers. However, we know this is not true! Even severe idolaters have become Christians, and so have their sons and daughters. One such person, for example, a Hindu Avatar and the son of an Avatar, became a Christian and wrote Death of a Guru, a very interesting book.

Always search Scripture IN CONTEXT so that you won't be deceived.

Author: Margaret Lepke

 

 

COMMENTS

From a similar article posted on the'Women for God' blog:

Meredith Ivy said...

Thank you for this post, Margaret. This subject is one I have given a lot of thought to in the past, so it is encouraging to read your thoughts as well as to be reminded of the importance of searching the scriptures for each issue we may encounter. Many blessings to you!

July 17, 2010 9:05 PM

 

Taliah said...

Thank you for the encouragement to go to the Word to test all things. I have read Death of a Guru, it is a very good book - an incredible encouragement in the power of God to save.
God bless.

July 18, 2010 2:11 AM

 

Connie Reagan said...

What you write is true BUT the truth has to be APPLIED. I have helped with a ministry that assists people caught in patterns that are visible through their family lines, and as they are led to apply the truth of scripture, repent (where appropriate) and make a choice to believe the truth of Scripture, freedom comes!
Just as in the Bible, the children of Israel were given the promised land YET they had to FIGHT for it. And just as we have to appropriate what Jesus did for us on the Cross for salvation!

November 27, 2010 8:19 AM

 

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this article Margaret, I've researched this doctrine too after discovering family members are being taught this principle in their churches. WE ARE FREE BY THE BLOOD OF CHRIST! AMEN! Here is the bible's answer to the deautoronomy scripture, Ezekial 18:3 & 18:20, Jeremiah 31:34, John Chapter 9 and Galations 3:13. As was said on another discussion forum, this (misguided) teaching breeds anxiety amongst believers and robs us from peace in christ. In Jesus name :)

September 4, 2011 8:13 AM

 

Margaret Lepke said...

Thank you, everyone, for your helpful comments! I totally agree with what Connie said about truth having to be applied, and that ministries teaching this principle IN THE RIGHT CONTEXT are very helpful. My husband and I are very much aware of this in our own counselling ministry (www.biblicalrescue.org). Also a hearty thank you to 'Anonymous' for the extra verses!

September 4, 2011 7:58 PM

 

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