I had a conversation with a friend about a scripture I have shared on my blog before:

Exodus 34:6-7
And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness,  maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet He does not leave the guilty unpunished; He punishes the children and their children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation.”

My friend felt condemned about this scripture because of the sin he/she felt was now released to family members.  Without Jesus, this scripture would inspire nothing but hopelessness!

But there is always HOPE with Jesus!   No matter what we have experienced in our lives, the blood of Jesus is greater!

The law was impossible to keep!  Can you imagine trying to keep track of each rule?  We would be doomed from the start because we can’t be good enough.  We can’t act holy enough.  WE can’t erase what we have done in our lives.   Does this mean we have no hope?

JESUS is our HOPE.  If He is our Savior, then He is interceding for us at the right hand of the Father as our advocate in heaven.  We have One who has been tempted, yet never sinned.   He understands us because He walked this earth as a human.   All we have to do is repent and ask for forgiveness.  It seems too simple doesn’t it?  Surely we should have to walk around in ashes and wear a scarlet letter or something.  Right?

Hebrews 8:12
For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.

1 John 1:9
If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

But shouldn’t we continually chew on all of our failures?  We deserve to be punished for what we have done, right?

Yes, we all deserve hell just from being born with the sin nature living in us.  Because of the fall of man, we have that seed of rebellion in our hearts.   But what a precious God to give us His Son to take our place!  With Jesus, we don’t deserve hell anymore.  With Jesus, our sin is atoned for by His blood and is washed away.   We are PURIFIED.

Does sin still open demonic doors in our lives?  Yes.

Does sin bring consequences?  Yes, one way or another.

But does this mean there is no hope?  NO.

GOD KNEW we would get ourselves into terrible situations that only HE could undo.

1 Corinthians 10:13
No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.

God knows we will be tempted and He gives us an escape.  But even when we ignore His warnings and press into the sin — is there no HOPE?  NO.

We humans have a hard time forgiving ourselves!  That is where we get stuck and then the devil brings loads of condemnation to pour over our thoughts.

Romans 8:1-2
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.

Anytime we hear thoughts (or entertaining thoughts) that don’t line up with who GOD says we are — then you can guarantee a devil is behind it.  It is our responsibility to capture those thoughts before they really get deep within our hearts.

What do I mean by capturing thoughts?   I mean we should make a conscious effort to think about the words we have running through our minds.  If these words are negative and would only produce “death” — then STOP the thoughts.  Even if it means speaking out loud to break the cycle.

When I was bound by fear, I would hear, “I’m going to have a panic attack” (the demon was speaking to me in 1st person of course) and eventually I would work myself into a frenzy.   Once God opened my eyes to what was happening, I would begin to speak scriptures out loud to overcome the thoughts placed in my mind.

One scripture that comes to mind when I think of hopelessness is this:

Psalm 118:17
I will not die but live, and will proclaim what the LORD has done.

One of my dear friends told me after her divorce that the devil would say, “Just drive off of this bridge.”  Actually, I have had more than one friend share this type of story with me.  “Nobody would miss you and they would be better off without you” type of lies would swim through their minds.  Argh, demons are LIARS.

John 8:44b
…  He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.

Nobody can trust or believe what the devil says.  If he says you have no hope, then you know the truth is the opposite.

So, back to my original scripture concerning sin passing down to our descendants.  In my own family line, I will just give one example (though there are many I’m sure):  Rejection.  I saw it in my grandmother on my mom’s side.  Then in my Mom.  Then in me.  Neither my grandmother or my mom had the revelation that it was a spiritual attack, but I DO so I have dealt with it using my SPIRITUAL weapons!  (My weapons that were given by my Father in heaven.)

2 Corinthians 10:4
The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.

I do not intend to allow this to be passed down to my child.  She will be so covered in love that this lie of satan will not have fertile soil to take root!  I also have the tools to cast it out if I ever see it raise its ugly head!   My ancestors didn’t walk in that revelation.

If you are reading these words, then you now have some understanding that “opened” doors don’t HAVE to remain open.  If you have opened some doors to sin in your life, it isn’t too late.  You can be restored.  You are redeemed.  Your children can be restored.

God has a way of making the BIGGEST messes the most WONDERFUL testimonies!

Those who don’t know me intimately may think I’ve never strayed off course.  Well let me assure you — I have done horrible things that don’t bring glory to God.  We all have a past.  And for you, that “past” might have been last night, this morning, or two seconds ago.   But REJOICE, because if you still have breath in your lungs, you can repent and turn around.

Repent means to TURN around.  Stop what you’re doing … ask forgiveness … and go in the opposite direction from sin.

Lamentations 3:22-23
the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed,

Because His compassions fail not.
They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness.

We are equipped and set up for success.  I pray this has given someone a measure of hope today!

God loves you and has a plan for your life!

Jeremiah 29:11
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

Please be encouraged by this song by Jesus Culture: Break Every Chain

(Photo credit: sign)