Pt.1 Judas In The Church
Pt.2 Opening the Door to A Tormenting Spirit p.7
Pt.3 Get That Old Goat Our of Your House p.14
Pt.4 Unforgiveness-Satan’s Greatest Weapon p.21
Pt.1 Judas In The Church
Some of the reasons why Christians are not receiving answers to prayer, why they are sick and can’t get well has to do with what this teaching is about. John 13:1-12 tells of the Last Supper Jesus had with his disciples. Judas was a part of the group and the treasurer. We are looking at three and ½ years into Jesus ministry, just before He is to be betrayed, crucified and be raised from the dead according to the scriptures. John 13:1-2 “Now before the feast of the passover, when Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end. And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray him;” The slanderer put something into Judas heart. Now, Judas is the Greek form for the Hebrew name
. Judah Judahwas one of the 12 sons of Jacob and the most noted city of Judahwas the city of Bethlehem, where both King David and Christ were born. Judas actual name in Hebrew would have been . The word Judah in Hebrew means praise. So when you speak of the tribe of Judah , you are speaking about the tribe of praise. In reality, Judas, or Judah should have been a worshipper, one who praised. But something happened that turned his life around emotionally, spiritually and physically. Judah
Secondly, Judas was from a place called Kerioth. It was simply giving your name and where you are from. Iscariot from the Greek is Iskariotes, is-kar-ee-o'-tace; of Hebrew, inhabitant of Kerioth; Iscariotes (i.e. Keriothite). Ish means man and Iscariot means the man from Kerioth. There are two places in the Bible called Kerioth; one in the area of
Moab, which is across the Jordan River from Israel, today known as Jordanand also a place in Joshua 15:25 called Kerioth which was located directly in the tribe of . So Judas is from a famous time in a famous tribe called Judah . Judas was from the same area and tribe as Christ, not far from the city in which Christ was born. That is interesting in light of the scripture of Psalm 41:9. “Mine own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, which did eat of my bread, hath lifted up his heel against me.” Judah
Now, according to scripture, Judas did have a ministry. First, Judas was given the supernatural power and authority to minister to others. Christ had ordained 12 disciples, also known as sent ones in Mark 3:13-19. Judas is listed as one of those chosen by the Lord. In Luke 9:1-2 the twelve disciples were given power or authority to heal the sick and cast out devils. We don’t read examples where he actually did so, but that is also true of some of the other disciples, as Nathaniel or Bartholomew, or Andrew. But they all had that authority. In Luke 10:17 the disciples told Jesus; “Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through thy name.” Judas was a part of this group but we don’t know whom he was teamed up with as Jesus did send them out two by two, because the groupings weren’t given to us. So we can see that he began in the right direction, as so many do that are saved, even filled with the Holy Spirit and living for the Lord and excited about the Lord and hungry for the things of God and then something happens and they are changed. Something else about the ministry of Judas was that he was given a special position in the ministry. There was a special inner circle of Peter, James and John who are with Jesus many times without the others. But Judas had a special position of his own according to John 13:29. He was the treasurer for Jesus and his disciples. That was a great privilege. He handled the offerings given to them and the distribution of funds and making of purchases.
Thirdly, Judas was given a special potential. Every person who has come to Christ is given a special potential, whatever that work may be for the
kingdom of God, and yet people can destroy that potential. Many who began in the ministry, shipwrecked that ministry, left the ministry, lost their family, even died as drunks. Simply, sin destroys lives and people and their potential and that is the purpose and work of Satan, to destroy your potential for the Lord. Judas had a great potential, but John 6:70 says Jesus told the disciples, “Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil?” In Matthew 12:26, Jesus said; “if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand?” So how could Judas have been a devil from the beginning and have cast out devils and heal the sick? The debate is whether or not Judas was a devil from the beginning. It is not that Judas was a devil, but as one expert said, this can be interpreted as “one of you is becoming a devil;” that there was something in him that Satan could use for his purposes, that he was becoming devilish in his thinking. Remember, sanctification and the renewing of our minds is a process and so is backsliding and loosing out with God, like King Saul. All men are either growing in grace and becoming more like Jesus or they are becoming more like Lucifer in their thinking. Everyone is going through a process and being formed into the image of one or the other. No one can be spiritually stagnant. Judas had opened a door for Satan and he did so at the Last Supper. He took the devil to dinner with him.
What went wrong with Judas? The same thing that goes wrong with people today. It’s when sheep turn into goats. Sheep represent the true believer who is following the Lord and the goat is one who tears up the pasture, splits the flock, butts against everything, etc. Three things happened in the life of Judas that caused him to go wrong and these things happen to people today in the church when the fall into the same traps that he fell into. And when they do, unless they see the error of their way and repent, they can end up like Judas ended up.
First, Judas in spite of all that he had and was given of the Lord; criticized intimate worship. In John 12 a woman comes into the house with a box of ointment that scripture tells us was worth 300 pence. That doesn’t sound like a lot of money, but in Jesus day a pence was about a days wage. So it is worth about 300 days work, or about a years’ wages. She breaks the alabaster box of ointment and with her hair begins to rub it into the feet of Jesus and the fragrance fills the room. It is a very sweet and strong smelling oil. Judas became indignant and didn’t see the worship of the woman nor the cost of the worship but how much money could have been made by selling the box! John 12:5 “Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?” In this most intimate moment of worship and love as the woman washes Jesus feet with her tears and anoints them with this ointment, that is costing this woman her savings and dowry, this man has no clue to the spiritual things going on because he is so carnally minded and sees only the money value of the ointment. John 12:6 “This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein.” The word translated thief here is kleptes, klep'-tace and is the where we get the word kleptomaniac from, a person who can’t keep from stealing. The Greek word for ‘bear’ here isn’t just to carry but to carry off. Judas was tipping into the bag. He saw money coming into Jesus ministry and felt he deserved more than he was getting. Judas didn’t care for the things of God or the things of the spirit, else he too would have been weeping with this woman and being touched by her love and sacrifice to the Lord to worship Him. This happens today in churches. I saw this happen in a large church in
Houston when Evangelist Shaw from preached one night. They took up a special offering for him and it was in the thousands of dollars, the church being about 1500 people at the time and it was a well off church. And he never got the promised check, not one penny. England
Secondly, Judas was upset over how the money was being used. First he criticized how the woman worshipped, then how the money was being used. Vs.5 “Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?” The first murder in the Bible took place over an offering. Cain killed his brother Abel over his offering. Today many in church are arguing over the finances. Korah was a Levite and Aaron was also a Levite as Moses. Korah felt that he should have a more powerful position of authority inside the ministry of the tabernacle and led a revolt against Moses that cost many their lives. As a result, God judged and killed Korah, his family and 250 men who followed him in the rebellion over spiritual authority and control as it related to one man who had a little money and so wanted more control over things. Many give a lot to the work of God, but then feel like they have the right and authority to control what happens in the church, how the money is spent or control the pastor based on the money they give. Many a pastor has been bought by someone in the church. I talked to a man on the streets of Houston who was once a pastor. His fall started with taking money given directly to him by someone in the church. First it was a handshake from a lady with $50.00 then $100.00 and he said it led to his falling away and out of the ministry. He said if he had not started taking that money he knew he would still be in the ministry.
Then there are those today that believe that investing in the poor is a waste and that the poor are not needed. Judas spoke of giving to the poor but many churches today shun the poor. In Acts 5 a couple held back part of an offering they professed to be making to the Lord and God struck them dead for lying about their offering. Judas seemed to want to control the money and where it went because he kept the bag and there are many in churches today, deacons or elders who want to do the same thing or they tell the pastor that if he doesn’t preach what they want or not preach something they don’t want, the money flow will stop.
Thirdly, Jesus was secretly conducting meetings with those opposed to the ministry of Christ. Judas knew that he could find people who didn’t agree with Jesus ministry and it seems after this incident with the alabaster box, he was so indignant that he began to search out those opposed to Jesus and started spending time with the Pharisees and Sadducees behind Jesus’ back in order to set Jesus up. One of the first ways to know that someone is loosing out with God is when they begin to go behind the Pastors back and try to find people to work against him. Even if you don’t agree with him or the way he is doing things, you pray and seek God and don’t oppose the one that God put over you and over the church. You don’t work to bring change through manipulation and intimidation and domination. That is what happens in many churches today. That is not of God.
The religious leaders of the day were more than willing to set a trap for Jesus. They had tried to trap him in many ways, even trying to make him king one time and he refused it. They knew they couldn’t set Jesus up with money, He didn’t touch it; sex, he didn’t date; or pride, because He just wasn’t susceptible to fall in these ways and they knew it. But Judas came and said, “give me money and I will give you Jesus.”
This is a sidetrack but one of the greatest dangers in the world today is that many ministries have a Judas complex. They say, send me some money and I will keep giving you Jesus. Send us money and we will show you Jesus. There is so much preaching about money and the bottom line, which is give money to them and their ministry. One preacher said; ‘If you want the anointing I have, your going to have to give into my ministry to get the anointing that I have.’ If he has any anointing to begin with, it has nothing to do with money and doesn’t come from money, but through the power of the Holy Spirit and every believer with the fullness of the Holy Spirit has an unction from Him (John 2:20). Some study the Word more and others fast and pray more to energize that anointing and flow in it, but that is not the same as equating money with spiritual blessing or equating ministry to money or obedience to God in giving them money. Some say that God is speaking through them to say if they will give so much money, then God will grant them whatever request they want. Make this pledge and tell God want you want Him to do for you and He will do it. Then they make a disclaimer that this isn’t to buy God but if they will believe and obey God, when he speaks through his servants; them, then God will grant them their request. That is not the core of obedience to God. You are not going to get everything you want or need by sending more money to some TV preacher, though they try to make you believe that. That is not the Bible. There are many aspects to serving God and obeying Him. They tell you to give and guarantee that you will get some result. But we are taught to give out of love and thankfulness to the Lord, not to give out of greed. God loves a cheerful giver, not a greedy covetous giver. I call this sanctified religious covetousness.
God offers all of His children a covenant of blessing because of obedience to Him and that doesn’t start and stop with money given to a particular ministry, though God will bless us for giving and has told us that if we don’t tithe we are robbing God. And God does at times speak to an individual to give to someone or to a ministry, but it is spoken to them by the Holy Spirit and is private and when they give it isn’t publicly to get praise or recognition of men by being told publicly. But again, in scripture, tithing is bringing your tithe into the local church, which is the storehouse. Tithes don’t belong going to TV preachers or ministries even though many ask for the tithe of the watchers.
Judas was saying, if you will pay my price, I’ll lead you to Jesus. God can’t be bought. It has been told that there have been people call a ministry hot line for prayer, that is so advertised on TV for those needing prayer, and were promptly asked if they wanted to give an offering to the ministry. What kind of nonsense is that? I hear this happened to someone contemplating suicide. Also in another large ministry, when people sent in their money with prayer requests as they were told to do, the PO Box was for this man’s bank account and the money was deposited and the prayer requests and letters thrown in the trash behind the bank.
Anyway, Judas criticized the woman’s intimate worship, he was upset over how the money was being used in the ministry and went behind the back of Jesus to his enemies. Everywhere in every church there are usually a few that criticism everything, no matter what. They criticize the pastor, the messages, the music, the singing, the use of money, everything. Ultimately these people will always suffer. Scripture says that Satan entered into Judas heart at the Last Supper, the Passover Supper.
Jesus held up the bread and said, this is my body which is broken for you; and he held up the cup and said, this is my blood which is shed for you. He was taking the bread and cup and symbolically showing them His suffering, his death and introducing them to the New Covenant. Of all times for Satan to enter Judas’ heart, this was when Judas literally drank the cup of death by partaking of this cup unworthily. Judas drank of this cup and because his heart was not right with the Lord, he sealed his own doom and destruction. Later on he committed suicide and he died within 24 hours of betraying Christ. The devil showed him the 30 pieces of silver, but not the damnation that would be his for his betrayal of the Lord Jesus Christ. Judas took the devil to dinner and Satan entered his life and it cost him his life by the work of a tormenting spirit.
Pt.2 Opening the Door to A Tormenting Spirit
How does Satan get a doorway into the life of a believer? We are talking about a believer being possessed by a devil, being demonized or controlled by an evil spirit by how we can open the door to a demon to attack them physically, mentally, with fear or unbelief.
Ephesians 6:16 “Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.” He is telling the people of God to put on the armor of God.
2 Corinthians 2:11 “Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.” It is possible, if you are ignorant of Satan’s devices, to give him an advantage over you.
Ephesians 4:27 “Neither give place to the devil.” If it were not possible to give place to the devil, we would not have to be warned about it. It is possible to give into to that which Satan would have us to do.
Luke 22:31 “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:” Peter was a believer and follower of Christ, but Satan desired him, meaning to obtain by asking. It is similar to Satan asking God to have access to Job to test him. Satan desired to test Peter to show God that he was not what God thought he was or what Peter even thought he was.
1 Peter 5:8 “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” Peter is not addressing sinners, but believers telling them to be awake and sober and strong because the enemy is like a lion sneaking around looking for one he can attack and take advantage of.
1 Timothy 3:6 “Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.” Paul warns young ministers about pride. They must be very careful so that they are not taken in by temptations of pride. A person call fall into sin because of pride.
2 Timothy 2:26 “And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.” there are snares of the devil that believers can fall into.
James 4:7 “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” If he is fleeing, then he was first close by, attacking you.
1 Timothy 3:7 “Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.” This is the guidelines of those entering the ministry and again speaks of the snare or trap of the devil. Satan tries to set traps for God’s people to cause them to fall.
1 Corinthians 7:5 “Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.” So Satan can tempt those in a marital relationship if they do not give one another the affection and love they need. If you hold that back, Satan will temp you.
1 Timothy 5:15 “For some are already turned aside after Satan.” Many believe in once-saved, always-saved but much of what is written in scripture says otherwise. How can you turn aside after Satan in you never followed God? You cannot be doing both, following the Lord and the devil at the same time. James said water cannot be sweet and bitter at the same time. Jesus said, you can’t serve two masters. You are serving one or the other and those who are lukewarm are spewed out of the mouth of Christ. They were in Him, but spewed out. So it is possible for Satan to work in the life of a believer. Yet for the devil to get into a persons life, there has to be a door opened for him at some point. This is the question. What opens the door for the enemy to get into the lives of believers? Is it sin of any kind? Is it fear or unbelief? I think one of the answers is strife or contention that leads to unforgiveness is the greatest tool Satan has in working against believers. I don’t believe it is so much fear or unbelief or just falling into a sin that causes people to open the door to a real attack of the enemy, but those things which lead to unforgiveness in their life. It doesn’t matter if it is strife or disagreement within a family, between neighbors, in a church, or other Christians: when it leads to unforgiveness, it opens a door for the enemy.
Matthew 18:23-35 This man who had a hugh debt and was forgiven finds a fellow believer who owed a very small debt and instead of telling him what the master had done for him and forgiving his brother, he took him by the neck and demanded payment immediately. The man begs, not having money and his plea for mercy is rejected by the one who had been given mercy. Then the one who had been forgiven becomes unforgiving and as a result was himself imprisoned and turned over for torment. In those days the prisoners were beaten as Jesus was, on the whipping post. The prison tormentors beat the prisoners usually into confession and submission. To the unforgiving servant; Jesus said, “So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.” If you don’t forgive others who have hurt and wronged you and release them, neither will the heavenly father forgive you, but will allow you to be turned over to the tormentors. That tormentor is symbolic of evil spirits that are allowed to attack a persons mind or body until they humble themselves before God and repent.
When you get into strife, it leads to unforgiveness. Proverbs 17:1 “Better is a dry morsel, and quietness therewith, than an house full of sacrifices with strife.” Better to go to a church that is a bit dry without a seeming great move of God that to go to a place where they are shouting and praising God but when it’s all over there are people filled with unforgiveness and strife. Proverbs 28:25a “He that is of a proud heart stirreth up strife:” People don’t forgive because of pride. They want God to smite them and punish them.
Unforgiveness opens a door to an evil spirit. Evil spirits can bring mental torment and definitely hinder your spiritual walk and progress. A good example is King Saul. He infringed on the priestly office and made a sacrifice. He captured king Agag and kept the best animals for sacrifice. He was supposed to wait for Samuel to arrive for the offering, because God has a divine order and that was that the priest had to make the offerings and no one else was allowed to do so. Saul made a sacrifice and Samuel said, ‘what have you done’ and told him that rebellion was as witchcraft and that God was more interested in obedience than a sacrifice. It says, the spirit of God departed from Saul and an evil spirit began to trouble him. In 1 Samuel David was anointed to be the next king of
but doesn’t go into the position and he had to be matured and also Saul had to first die. King Saul, after finding out that David was anointed to become King, became so jealous that 1 Samuel 16:14 tells us an evil spirit troubled him. 1 Samuel 16:16, 23; 19:9 show us how an evil spirit from the Lord, or with God’s permission, came upon Saul and that he was so obsessed that he attempted to kill David many times. The enemy will take people captive when they do not obey the Lord. Israel
Disobedience opens a door to attack by an evil spirit. In 1st and 2nd Timothy, there was some contention in the church over elders who thought Timothy was too young to be their pastor and wanted an older man. 2 Timothy 1:7 “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” He is telling Timothy to not let the enemy intimidate him. 1 Timothy 4:12 “Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.” 5:1 “Rebuke not an elder, but entreat him as a father; and the younger men as brethren;” Don’t get into an argument with elders who disagree. Don’t let them despise your youth or think you can’t do the job God called you too. 2 Timothy 1:6 “Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands.” 1:8 “Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God.” Timothy’s answer was (1) don’t let anyone despise you because when they start doing so it will intimidate you, (2) You were given a word or prophesy that you were to do this job so fight this battle with the Word of God and (3) Stir up the gift of God within you, the anointing and spirit of God has given you. Jude 20 “But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost.” And praying in the Spirit allows Him to make intercession for you. Paul gave Timothy a warning about people in the church always causing trouble. Have you met trouble makers in the church? Complainers, murmurs, gossipers?
2 Timothy 2:25-26 “In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.” If they will acknowledge the truth and repent, God will forgive them. It doesn’t say they could be taken captive, but are taken captive meaning there were people in the church with problems who had fallen into the snare of the enemy. Satan had an open door to then. Strife in the church opens the door to the enemy and it is taking the devil to dinner in the same way that Judas did. When someone comes under this bondage of a tormenting spirit and thinking the thoughts of this spirit, they are doing the will of Satan.
In Matthew 16:16, Peter tells Jesus, “Thou art the Christ, …” then a few verses later Jesus has to rebuke Satan who is speaking through Peter. No, Satan didn’t possess Peter like he did Judas, but had thrown a dart into Peter’s mind and he was speaking about something that he had no knowledge of and Jesus said, “Satan get thee behind me” Why? “Thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men” (Matthew 16:23). So a believer can be subject to the spirit of God one moment and then turn around and be subject to another spirit the next moment. It can happen even when preaching in the pulpit, you can get a thought come that you speak that is awesome and a blessing or revelation, yet also it is possible for the enemy to throw a fiery dart at you and you say something that comes to mind as your speaking that later when you think about it realize that it wasn’t good and would have been better not said and you wonder where it came from.
Believers can be taken in by Satan because they oppose one another in the church and that opens the door for the enemy to work. The pattern of king Saul’s becoming subject to the evil spirit is so much like many today. King Saul came from the smallest tribe in
and had a humble beginning (1 Samuel 9:21). God turned the hearts of a band of men to follow after Saul (1 Samuel 10:26). Eventually Saul became filled with pride and exalted himself (1 Samuel 15:28). When that happened David was anointed to be the future king by the prophet Samuel (1 Samuel 16:13). Then David went out and killed Goliath and became a national hero in Israel (1 Samuel 17) and they began to sing songs of David saying, “Saul hath slain his thousands, and David his ten thousands” (1 Samuel 18:7). That made king Saul jealous of David and he began to ‘eye’ David (1 Samuel 18:8-9). Both the Jews and Arabs have what they call the ‘evil eye’. They believe that someone with a certain spirit can just look at you in a certain way and you have to be protected from this ‘evil eye.’ Saul eyed David because he had an evil spirit upon him. The Muslims have a hand with an eye in the middle of it, which is like a charm, and it is supposed to ward off the ‘evil eye.’ Anyway, then Saul set out to try and kill David before he could take the throne. Saul made 21 attempts upon David’s life. When David would go to the palace, suddenly this evil spirit would come upon king Saul (1 Samuel 16:14; 18:10; 19:9). When the evil spirit came upon Saul, he even took a javelin, a type of spear and threw it at David to try and kill him. What is ironic was that every time king Saul was troubled by this evil spirit, they would bring in David to play the harp until king Saul was refreshed and got temporary deliverance from this evil spirit. That shows how the right music played by an anointed person can drive out the evil spirits. King Saul could only find deliverance from this evil spirit by the presence and ministry of the person against whom he had such strife, jealousy and hatred. When David ministered to Saul, by playing to him, it caused Saul’s heart to be temporarily humbled before David and the Lord put a restraint upon the evil spirit and kept it from working in Saul’s life at that time. Israel
There are people in the church tormented by spirits and they don’t even realize it. To them, the way they speak and act is only what is natural for them. But strife divides people and opens the door for the enemy to work in the church. God is against such among His people. He desires us to walk in unity, love and forgiveness toward one another and not in strife and unforgiveness. That is sin.
The Day of Atonement was one of the seven Feasts of Israel that took place on the 10th day of the 7th month and was the day when all
came together with prayer and fasting. Then the High Priest made atonement for himself, for the priests and for Israel with the blood of a bull, a ram and a goat, etc. On the Day of Atonement there was atonement for the sins of the nation and the people were forgiven. One of the procedures the priest went through on the Day of Atonement, was the selecting of two identical goats, one which was marked for the Lord and the other marked for 'aza'zel, az-aw-zale'. The goat marked for the Lord was killed and offered upon the alter in Israel thread around it. They didn’t want that goat coming back into the camp because symbolically that goat had their sins upon it so eventually they started taking the goat and casting it off a cliff to make sure the sin of the goat would not be carried back into the camp. This is why they eventually started pushing the scapegoat off the cliff. Jerusalem. Azazel means goat of departure and is translated as the scapegoat. The priest laid his hands upon the horns of the goat to transfer the sins of Israel to the goat and then a red thread was tied around a horn and they put a rope around its neck and ran it across the ramp of the eastern gate, across the Mount of Olives and meet another man who would run it so far and transfer it and then eventually they would take it to a mountain called the mountain of Azazel where they would push the goat off the mountain and it would die. At the same time there was a red thread around the goat for the Lord and a red thread on the temple door. When the scapegoat died in the wilderness the red thread on the temple door supernaturally turned white. This is in Jewish history and that is how they knew that God had forgiven their sins for another year. Before they used to throw the scapegoat off the mountain, they simply took it to the wilderness and what began to happen according to Jewish tradition is that that goat would be seen again around towns and communities and they recognized it because it had a red
Some people are living with a goat in their house. That we will talk about in the next section, which is the meat of this message.
Pt.3 Get That Old Goat Our of Your House
On the Day of Atonement, when God was to remit the sins of the nation of
, they had two goats, one for the Lord that was placed upon the brazen alter and sacrificed and the other was the scapegoat that carried away the sins of the people. The High Priest took a red thread and tied it around the horn of the scapegoat and sent it into the wilderness. In ancient times it was simply sent into the wilderness but then because of a fear of it coming back into a community in Israel Israel, they eventually pushed it off the cliff of a mountain in . In the Judean wilderness they have a mountain today that is called the Israel Mountain of Azazel or the Mountain of the scapegoat.
Jesus Christ became our atonement. On the Day of Atonement, he made atonement not just for the sins of
but of the entire world. When Jesus was on the cross we can see how important forgiveness is. There on the cross, Jesus said, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34). Jesus knew he was dying so the world could be forgiven but in order for him to die and forgive the world, he has to forgive those who had crucified Him. Jesus would not even give up his life to die on the cross until he first forgave all those there who put him on the cross. To be able to forgive the sins of all men, He asks the Father to forgive the sins of those who placed him on the cross. Israel
Stephen is another example. He was one of the first seven deacons appointed in the church in
Jerusalem, full of the Holy Spirit. He began to preach the gospel and ended up being stoned to death by a group of Jewish men for preaching Jesus. As he was being stoned, he asked God to forgive those who were stoning him at that moment. This is the power of forgiveness and how powerful it was in the early church. They understood it and the priority and need for it. Stephen didn’t pray that God would judge those men who were killing him or destroy them or send them to hell or send fire from heaven to consume them. The man holding the coats of those who were stoning Stephen was Saul of Tarsus who would later be converted and become Paul the Apostle. The prayer of Stephen was not only answered but God raised up one responsible for his death to lead the Gentile part or branch of the New Testament church.
Back to the words of Jesus upon the cross. “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” The Greek word for ‘forgive’ means to remit the sins. To remit the sins alludes to sending forth the sin like the goat. In other words, send forth these sins, take away these sins and carry these sins off the way you would with the scapegoat. After the resurrection of Jesus, he said, “Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained” (John 20:23). If you don’t forgive someone then you have retained that sin unto yourself and it will give the enemy an open door into your life. If I remit someone’s sins against me, then they are remitted back to them. If two people get into strife and you are one of them and you hold that sin and refuse to forgive them, then that sin is retained to you; the goat is in your house. You are living with the old scapegoat of sin. But if you remit their sins, if you send them forth like the scapegoat and you forgive that person, then the sins are remitted to them and then they must decide what to do. If that person refuses to forgive you after you have asked them for forgiveness then the goat goes home with them. It is like the scapegoat with that crimson thread upon its horn that has the sins of the nation upon it. It is sleeping in their house and eating dinner with them at the table and taking a shower with them in the morning. If you send forth unto them by remitting their sins unto them, you send the goat unto their house. If you retain their sins and don’t forgive them, then the goat stays with you. This is a powerful and important principle spiritual principle of the goat being in your house. This is the reason why people who have been into strife and contention, who call themselves believers literally have no peace at home. Many in the church are not happy in church because they are not happy at home. But they are not happy at home because of the way they are treating people in the church. It is a vicious cycle. What happens if a person doesn’t release another person or forgive them?
Psalm 64:3-8 This talks about words becoming like swords and words, bitter words become like arrows. When people become bitter and start saying things about others and criticizing others, they are shooting forth arrows out of their mouth. But the scripture says that God will shoot at them and wound them. In other words, what you shoot out at someone else that is an unjustified arrow; it will eventually turn and come back upon you.
Many a parent who condemned others because their children got pregnant or took drugs and boasted that it would never happen to their children, how their children were under control and this and that and had a cruel and condemning spirit toward other parents and their children who fell into trouble, later found their own children in exactly the same condition and situation as those they condemned. Parents who have complained and were critical in the church towards other parents who had a child who got pregnant, drank, took drugs, became a homosexual over the years lived to weep over that very same thing that had come to pass with their own children. God makes their own tongue fall upon them. “Visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation” (Numbers 14:18).
I have seen this and I have experienced what it is to criticize someone else and then suffer from being attacked in the same way or by the same spirit. Anyone in the church and especially in the ministry who at one time fell and sinned and then repented needs to be forgiven and supported and not continually judged and condemned as has happened in
concerning some who have fallen. It is said that the Christians are the only ones who kill their wounded and how true it is because of critical condemning and unforgiving spirits in the church, even when that other person who is being condemned and spoken against has done nothing against the one who is speaking evil of them, because they take the reproach or spirit of another who has an axe to grind or a grudge against that person. Many have taken the sins of another upon themselves, even though they were in no way wronged or hurt by that person but took another’s reproach and sin unto themselves. The Lord will cause the thing that you criticize another about to fall upon you. That which you hold against a brother or sister in the Lord, will come back upon you. The body of Christ has got to learn this and learn to shut the door to the enemy by allowing strife and contention and unforgiveness within their spirit. Some of the troubles we go through is God allowing us to be tested by what we test others by. With the same measure of judgment that you speak against others, it will be measured back to you again. If you become critical of another over something they did or someone in their family did, you will have to bear it. God will allow the hedge around you to come down and you will have to bear the very thing that you were critical about against another. It doesn’t matter what it is. Don’t criticize other people when the enemy is attacking them. Don’t criticize others when they are going through trials and tribulation and temptation. This is a lesson I wish I had learned many years ago. With the same measure that you speak in judgment or condemnation of others, judgment will come against you. America
There is a difference between correcting wrong doctrine and this. Yet, even in correcting wrong doctrine, it is best to do it in love and not condemnation because you can win more people by love than by criticism and condemnation of others. False doctrine can be corrected without judging and condemning the one from whom it came or that you heard it from. Leave that to God.
Many who have fallen into a trap of the enemy will look back and say, “I don’t know why the Lord allowed this to happen to me, or I don’t know why this happened.” If they will go back and examine their own words they have probably have been critical of another at some point and said something about someone going through a hard time or under an attack of the enemy. Instead of praying for them and trying to be a help and comfort to them, to see them restored they criticize and condemn. That is a wrong spirit and attitude and will always get you into trouble. There are five men today who were well known ordained ministers in
who all fell into sexual immorality and lost their ordination with their denomination. Every one of them had at one time first criticized other men of God in some way or another and it came home to them. America
The goat that you send out will come to your house. God wants to take your sins and remove them from you, but when you are not willing to forgive others and go into strife, it will put the goat in your house and you will have severe trouble. When you get into strife and unforgiveness, the Lord will allows all these words you have spoken to eventually come back upon yourself or upon your family. Matthew 12:37 “For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.”
You remember how David, as King of Israel, committed adultery with Bathsheba then tried to cover and hide his sin with murder. And at first it looked like he was successful in doing it but the Lord knew what he had done and sent Nathan the prophet to David in 1 Samuel 12 to tell him a very strange parable. When David is then asked what will happen to the man who had many sheep who stole the poor man’s one sheep, he rose up in indignation and said that he would have to restore four fold to the poor man. Nathan said, “David, thou are the man” (2 Samuel 12:7). What happened was that God allowed David an opportunity to be merciful in that parable, but he wasn’t merciful so what David said with his own mouth, came upon him. He had four sons, including the first-born son of Bathsheba that died prematurely before their time under terrible circumstances because David pronounced his own judgment. Many people don’t realize that when they judge others, they are judging themselves. They forget the scripture to “Judge not, that ye be not judged” (Matthew 7:1). That simply means that if I am judging others and I’m not talking about dealing with sin and preaching against sin and iniquity that is destroying people, but I’m talking about people in the body of Christ judging others within the body. When we judge others, then we will be judged by the same measure. What we say about them will come back to us. How we treat them will come back to us. That is why so many Christians are having trouble and contention and problems. It is because they have a judgmental spirit and God requires of them that they go through what they are putting others through. God requires them to go through what they are putting other people through. I have seen this many times and though I wish it was not so, it has also happened to me.
It is important to keep you heart pure and not get into strife and contention and judgment of another. “Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed” (James 5:16). There are some that have a physical sickness or problem that God can’t heal because they haven’t confessed their faults and repented. They have to confess their faults and minister one to another for the healing power to be operative in their life. “He that diggeth a pit shall fall into it; and whoso breaketh an hedge, a serpent shall bite him” (Ecclesiastes 10:8). The pit that you’re digging for someone else, you will eventually fall into. When the hedge comes down, a serpent will bite you. In Job’s case, when God removed the hedge around him, he lost his health, wealth and family. I believe that we have spiritual hedges when we are walking uprightly in covenant with the Lord. “The angel of the LORD encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them” (Psalm 34:7). There are things you can do that will offend the angel of God assigned to you so that they are not able to protect you and keep that hedge up because of things you have done or said.
The scripture says that you can grieve the Holy Spirit and you can quench the Holy Spirit and you can resist the Holy Spirit. And when you do, He cannot work in your life to your benefit. When you break the hedge by your own actions, you will be bitten by a serpent, which is speaking of Satan. We need to remember Proverbs 18:21; “Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.” And also, Galatians 6:7; “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” When you speak evil against another, when you condemn and judge them, it will come back to you.
In Matthew 24 where it is talking about the signs of the end times, and usually what you hear about is the wars and rumors of wars etc., but in the middle of all that the Bible says in “then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another” (Vs.10). The Greek word for offended, skandalizo, skan-dal-id'-zo, comes from the root word skandalon, skan'-dal-on meaning to set a trap or entice to sin. Then it continues in Verses 12-13; “And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.” Many think that enduring to the end means enduring the war and the famines and pestilences etc. But in context of the setting it means that if you can endure the offence, if you can endure people speaking wrongly against you, you shall be saved. It is a different perspective than what most have though of the verse but how much sense it really makes. Think of how many people are not in church right now because at some point they were offended by someone else in the church, something someone did or said to them or about them. How many say, “well I don’t go to church any more because…” and you can fill it in with many excuses like, “someone made me mad, they are a bunch of hypocrites, someone said something about me, I was gossiped about, they are too interested in money, so and so or the preacher said this or did that and on and on it goes and they are not going to any church and not in the Lord.
Other Christians cannot get free from personal bondages because they still carry an offense in their spirit. Matthew 6:9-13 When the scripture speaks here of people releasing others from debts it is not talking about money, but forgive us the things we have done wrong to others as we forgive those who have wronged us. Releasing others from their debts to you is conditional for you to be free from temptation. “Forgive us our debts AS we forgive our debtors AND …” According to the Lord’s prayer, if people do not forgive others for their offenses it will open up a door for the enemy to tempt and test them. There are people under certain types of mental attacks, whether sexual temptation, temptation to do something wrong, but they are not understanding it and seeing why, but it is because they have not forgiven someone of their debts toward them. That helps us not to be led into temptation or delivers us from temptation. In Matthew 18:33, Jesus said he would deliver the one who wouldn’t forgive his brother over to the tormentors. A tormenting spirit can bring all kinds of tormenting thoughts into your mind and bring you under subjection to the snare of the devil as Paul spoke to Timothy.
First, unforgiveness can cause the answers to your prayers to be hindered or stopped. 1 Peter 3:7 “Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.” If a husband and wife are constantly arguing and fussing, the Bible says their prayers will be hindered. Why? Because their marriage is a covenant relationship! You have to honor one another and love one another as Christ loved the Church. When you start blaming one another or accusing one another, you will start fighting and it will hinder your prayers. So that is one reason we need to try and keep a good relationship in our marriage.
Unforgiveness can also prevent us from our financial needs being met. Matthew 5:23-24 “Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.” Don’t bother giving your financial gift unto the Lord if you have aught against your brother or you have unforgiveness in your heart against someone else or they against you. That’s why there are people in the church who can never see a breakthrough in their finances, see enough to meet their needs or any abundance or prosperity in their finances because of this and they stay in debt and financial lack. They are always complaining about another and have unforgiveness. You know that you are free in your spirit and you have truly forgiven someone when you can see their picture or see that person and be friendly towards them and not feel like you have a sore in your spirit that is festering up. Some never see their financial needs met because of unforgiveness against someone in the church. To “be reconciled to thy brother” means to be totally changed, be made different. Go and make up the difference, go to that person and make things right otherwise you will never see that financial breakthrough. You might say, “Well, what if they never forgive me.” Then the goat is in their house and not yours. Let them live with the goat if they want to but you don’t have to live with that goat. That is the purpose of this message, to help you get that old goat out of your house. Then you will remit the sin and hopefully they will also ask you for forgiveness and the old goat can be sent into the wilderness where it can die once and for all.
Pt.4 Unforgiveness-Satan’s Greatest Weapon
Jesus would not heal some people until they were first forgiven of their sins. Mark 2:5,9 Jesus healed the man of the palsy, the first thing he did was say, “Thy sins be forgiven thee.” In Luke 13 when Jesus healed the woman with a spirit of infirmity He said she was a daughter of Abraham. So she believed in forgiveness of sin and went to the synagogue on the Day of Atonement and so you don’t see Him tell her that. But Jesus knew those who were sinners who came to him for healing and those who were in covenant with Him who came for healing. In John 5 Jesus heals an impotent man, but then in verse 14 says, “Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.” James 5:15 says; “the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.” So forgiveness of sin is connected to healing because the Lord knows that you cannot maintain your healing if you continue to live in sin. Many who have been healed of something and went into sin had that sickness come back upon them. If God has healed you and you go around speaking evil against others, you open the door for the enemy to bring it back against you. This doesn’t mean that 5 or 10 years after a person has been healed that if something comes back against them that they have sinned. As a person healed of cancer, then many years later have another cancer come against them in a different part of their body. It is not always because of sin, it can be because of an attack or assignment of the enemy or the natural consequences of the fall. So this is not a reason to judge and condemn someone as a sinner. Though some have sicknesses because of sin, not all sickness is due to sin because of this world in which we live and that we are in a body that has been compromised because of sin and because of bad food and the environment, etc.
Forth. Your spiritual warfare can be hindered and nullified by unforgiveness. Matthew 6:14-15 “For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” This is one of the most powerful statement in the Word of God telling us clearly that if we ask God for forgiveness, He cannot forgive us if we are not willing to forgive others. This is why so many people are spiritually hindered and can’t feel God’s presence in church; they are spiritually dry and dead because they are full of animosity or hatred against someone in their heart. You have got to forgive others their trespasses to enter into the kingdom of God and be eternally saved. You can’t enter heaven with unforgiveness in your heart.
God asked Abraham to take and offer his covenant son up to God and because Abraham was willing to do that to his covenant son, God said, I am willing to give up my son and offer Him for the sins of the world. It is a spiritual principle that applies to us also. If God is going to send the greatest sacrifice He could, to die on the cross for our sins, so that He can forgive us, we must we willing to forgive other people their sins against us. Jesus didn’t have to die for our sins, but He chose to do so and we have no option but to forgive. If God cannot forgive us our sins because we will not forgive others, then where does that leave us in spiritual warfare? It means that your effort to rebuke Satan is powerless and meaningless because Satan is not obligated to listen to a rebuke, to your warfare, if God is not obligated to forgive your sins. If God will not forgive your sins then why should Satan be legally obligated to listen to your efforts to wage warfare against him? So we have lots of Christians trying to rebuke a devil that isn’t listening to them, trying to bind Satan and he is not being bound, asking to be delivered from temptation and they are not being set free. This explains why anyone, whoever they might be, would not be able to get deliverance from a spirit coming against them if they are speaking evil against another. If you are doing this, then the Lord will not allow success in your life or your ministry and you will be judged by the same thing that caused the person to fall that you are judging. The sin that thy fell by will overtake you! Those who are critical of others need to learn instead to pray for the one who has fallen and be merciful because only the merciful receive God’s mercy.
The Sin Unto Death
Twice in the Bible this phrase is written. Romans 6:16 “Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?” If you sin you will die, if you obey you will live. 1 John 5:16-17 “If any man see his brother sin a sin which is not unto death, he shall ask, and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death: I do not say that he shall pray for it. All unrighteousness is sin: and there is a sin not unto death.”
This is a very complicated scripture. It tells us that there is sin unto death and a sin not unto death and yet all unrighteousness is sin. It sounds like a contradiction. So let us begin with the word brother: adelphos, ad-el-fos' meaning a brother from the womb, which can be a physical brother or a figurative brother as a brother in the body of Christ. If a brother sins or commits an offense not unto death, he shall intercede for him or ask life for him if it is a sin not unto death. We were told to go to a brother offended. In the phrase ‘sin not unto death’, the word sin means offense. We are to go to the brother who has been offended and ask them for forgiveness and also to forgive them.
It says that a Christian can commit sins unto death and sins not unto death. What is that talking about? King Saul did something that was a sin which was unto physical death, it lead to his physical death. Judas sinned a sin that led him to his physical death.
Saul had sinned by offering sacrifices when he should not have done so, being impatient he infringed upon the office of the priest. God told Samuel to not grieve for Saul because He was going to set up a new king. 1 Samuel 16:14 “But the spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD troubled him.” In 1 Samuel 15:35, God repented that He had made Saul king over
. King Saul who had once been anointed by the Spirit and even thought to be among the prophets, sinned and the offense was so bad, the hedge was lifted, a demon tormented him and eventually he died in battle on top Israel Mount Gilboa.
In the New Testament we find a young man who was a member of the
church of Corinth. He sinned a bad sin, sleeping with his stepmother (1 Corinthians 5:1). In verse 5 Paul says; “deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.” Here is someone in the church committing an offense and Paul says deliver him to Satan so that Satan will attack that person’s flesh so they will repent and they might be saved in the day of the Lord. We do not know what happened to this young man, but obviously something did and in 2 Corinthians 2 Paul tells the church to forgive the young man and receive him and love him. In verse 6, he says; “Sufficient to such a man is this punishment, which was inflicted of many.” Now both of these men sinned a sin that could lead unto death. King Saul had an evil spirit troubling him and the young man was delivered over to Satan for the destruction of his flesh. The difference between the two is simply this: King Saul went so far as to seek out a witch trying to predict his future, which was forbidden by God. So Saul was unrepentant of his sin and died in battle. The young man fell into deep sorry after being delivered to Satan and repented and was able to recover himself out of the snare of Satan.
Going back to the sin unto death. John is saying nothing about blaspheming the Holy Spirit because the one sin the Bible teaches cannot be forgiven at any time or under any circumstances, in this life or the life to come is the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. I am not dealing with that here. I will only say that if you love the Lord, go to church and sense His presence, you have not blasphemed the Holy Spirit. Those who have committed this unpardonable sin are spiritually dead, hard and cold in spirit and like the Pharisees who were responsible for Jesus crucifixion. They had committed this sin.
Blasphemy is not just a sin unto death but unto eternal death. But if we look at what John is speaking about in1 John, the whole theme of John’s writing is to love God and to love the brethren (1 John 4:7-8, 11, 20; 5:1-2). “Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love… Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another… If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? … Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.” There is an offense or sin to God for a person to not love the brethren and yet many go to church and are religious while having animosity and strife toward a brother. This is a sin. A person can open the door to the enemy and leave this world before their time by not loving the brethren. Love is the greatest hedge you can have in your life.
There is a sin not unto death. In order for this to be taken care of, a brother has to go to the one who has sinned and ask life for him. Since John is dealing with love and relationship with brethren, ‘he is saying, here is a man in strife that is out of sync with the church’. It is a sin for him to do this but it doesn’t mean that he will die as a lost person but will answer to God on the Day of Judgment. He will be hindered here and possibly loose his heavenly reward, but will be saved. You go to him and ask life for him that has sinned not unto death. But then there is also a sin unto death. It doesn’t say here that it is physical or spiritual death. But all sin, if you continue to walk in it will lead to spiritual death, which is separation from God. But people can also die before their time because they don’t repent of a sin they have committed. There is a sin that will lead to physical death and there is nothing you can do because the person won’t do anything about it.
1 Corinthians 3:3 “For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?” They had strife and division. 1 Corinthians 11:24-30 is the details of the Lord’s Supper. Because some ate the Lord’s Supper unworthily, not discerning the body of Christ, they are sickly and even sleep or have died prematurely. These are people who could have been healthy and lived longer if they had not partaken of the Lord’s Supper unworthily. Instead of taking the Lord to dinner, they took the devil to dinner. They stayed in strife and contention, split churches, withheld their tithe, spoke against preachers. These can be sins unto death, physical death. 1 John 4:20 “If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?” You can’t have what you need from God if you don’t love the brethren.
There is a sin unto death that nobody can pray for and that sin is this: If you or I get into strife and contention we can become physically sick or die prematurely or open up a door to the devil. The only way to shut that door is for that one to go to the brethren and ask for forgiveness and life. There may be a situation where someone has just been walking in some disobedience and a person has to go for them and it will not necessarily lead to a physical death, but in this instance, Paul says that people have died prematurely because of sin. Ecclesiastes 7:17 says; “Why shouldest thou die before thy time?” Judas took the devil to dinner and less than 24 hours later he has a tormenting spirit upon him and commits suicide by hanging himself from a tree.
Now this may not be the whole interpretation and all that John is speaking about in this passage but he clearly says that there is sin unto death and sin that is not unto death. I believe when a person goes to church and acts like they are a saint and everything is all right and in strife and contention and take communion, they bring damnation upon themselves and can physically die because they have not made an offense right. Now I’m not speaking of harlot churches where they aren’t even saved to begin with. This isn’t written to them anyway but only to believers.
Yes all iniquity is sin and all sin can lead to spiritual death. But there is a real debate of what it takes for a person to loose their salvation and for their name to be taken out of the Lamb’s Book of Life. That is not the scope here. In the main context of John’s writing that we are dealing with here, I believe is about loving the brethren and contention in the church and properly discerning the body of Christ. Some because of sin did die prematurely. Others who have committed a sin because they are not properly walking in love as they should, need instruction and someone to ask life for them and correct them and bring them to repentance and it will not be unto either physical or spiritual death because they repent and make it right.
Going back to the Lord’s Supper. 1 Corinthians 10:21 “Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord's Table, and of the table of devils.” What are we anyway? Sinners saved by grace who have entered into a covenant with Jesus Christ through faith in His blood that was shed for us on
Calvary. That makes us a chosen generation and a royal priesthood and a holy nation in Christ. As this new nation, we are a family, everyone who names the name of Christ in faith, regardless of race or color or social status or whatever, who love Jesus are brethren. Then we ought to treat our brethren with respect and love. Sure their will be some disagreements but we must disagree agreeably.
There was argument in the early church over the distribution of funds and taking care of widows and arguments over circumcision. But we have to learn to disagree without getting into strife and unforgiveness about it. That is the primary thing. If you as a believer have ought against another then you need to repent and get things right. If you just blame others and don’t deal with it, then it will keep you in a mess and keep you from God’s best for your life. You can’t blame everyone but yourself for your actions and attitudes and walk uprightly before the Lord and make heaven. Don’t always try to make everything someone else’s fault. Take responsibility for your own actions and go before God and ask forgiveness. But before you ask for forgiveness from God, go to that person and ask them for forgiveness. Then drop it, forget it, don’t talk about it and tell others how you were treated. That brings it right back up again and that old goat will come right back into your house. So you have to decide whether or not you want to live with that old scapegoat in your house that is loaded with sin or do you want to remit it once and for all into the wilderness and be free and liberated from it? The decision is totally up to you. In order for God to forgive you your sins, then you must forgive others their sins against them. In order to be financially blessed by God, we have to forgive others and not rob God. In order to have power over Satan, we have to forgive others because Jesus blood cleanses us, we must be willing to forgive others. Jesus parable of the unforgiving servant bears this out. People are tormented, sick, weak and die because they have been given to an evil spirit because they were not willing to forgive. You must stop talking about the person, the problem or situation, forgive, put it under the blood, forget and get on with serving the Lord in faith and love. If you do not, then you will be taking the devil to dinner and he’s going to feed you something your not going to like and your going to end up in a detrimental situation with a goat in your house.
This is one of the most important issues for the body of Christ. No matter what is out there or what men have done to you, if you will stay faithful to God, He will eventually avenge you. When you have done what is right, you can walk free in the Love of God no matter what others may say about you. If they keep talking about you and you keep your spirit pure, they will only hurt themselves. They will be taking the devil to dinner and taking a goat home with them and they will have their prayers hindered and not be able to do spiritual battle with the enemy and they will not have power with God or a hedge of protection or provision from the hand of God. Do your part, do what God has told you to do. Get the goat out of your house. If they repent, praise God, then they have been restored. However, also know that just because you have forgiven them and they have forgiven you or said so, it doesn’t mean you have to try and rebuild a close or personal relationship with that person and maybe get hurt by them again. Get free and get on with your life and loving and serving the Lord without that person in your life. Just bless them as they go their way. Release and bless and go on.
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