Saturday, March 18, 2017

A Theology of Healing - Part 2

This post continues our series on "A Theology of Healing." If you haven't read the previous posts in this series, you can access them here and here

In review
1. God is loving and God is good. 
2. Sickness is usually not the result of personal sin. 
3. Jesus healed hundreds, possibly thousands of people in the New Testament. He is able and willing to heal today! 

4. Technically, Jesus didn’t simply “pray” for the sick. He actually “commanded” them to be healed.

This is really interesting as you walk through the New Testament. When Jesus confronted sickness, disease or lifelong debilitating conditions, He "commanded" healing to take place. For instance, 

Jesus commanded the lame to stand up (Jn. 5:8-9; Mk. 2:11)!

He commanded a man with a deformed or shriveled hand, “Hold out your hand.” (Mt. 12:9-13).

Jesus commanded the ears of the deaf to, “Be opened!” (Mk. 7:31-35).

Jesus commanded a guy with leprosy, “Be healed!” (Mt. 8:1-3).

Before healing a woman whose body had been emaciated by illness. For 18 years this woman had been afflicted, and her affliction was so severe that her body had become bent and twisted by her condition. Some speculate that her condition was some form of crippling arthritis.

But before touching this woman, Jesus spoke to the woman: “Woman! You are free! You are healed of your sickness!” Then, He touched her. And, “…suddenly...” I love that word! 

After 18 years of questions… 18 years of excruciating pain… After 18 years of being bent, mangled and twisted by this illness…  “…suddenly this woman was standing straight and tall, giving glory to God!” (Lk 13:10-16).

This is how Jesus “prayed” for sick people in the Gospels! He spoke directly to the affliction and commanded it to get into alignment with the Word of God!

There's only one instance regarding healing where the New Testament describes Jesus as "praying." He prayed at the tomb of Lazarus. It’s one of the most intimate prayers in the New Testament. 

Jesus looked up to heaven and said, “Father, thank you for hearing me. You always hear me, but I said it out loud for the sake of all these people standing here, so that they will believe you sent me.” Then Jesus shouted —John 11:41-43a NLT

Underline the phrase, “Jesus shouted…”

It’s from two words in the Greek — “megas,” which means, “great,” and, “kraugazo,” which means, “to cry out, cry aloud, or to shout.”

Have you ever wondered how Jesus feels about death and everything that precedes it? John 11 gives us a hint, because at the tomb of Lazarus, Jesus wept and He shouted! He cried out! Then, He commanded…  “Lazarus, come out!” (Jn 11:43)

This is critically important in understanding God's heart regarding sickness, disease and the pain we experience in this broken world! Jesus got ticked at sickness! He was angry about it! His anger wasn't a revelation of some kind of subtle frustration against people… It was a revelation of God’s heart when it comes to the brokenness in this world, and anything and everything that keeps people from experiencing all that God longs for them to experience… He's angry about it! He weeps over the brokenness of this world, and, one day, ultimately, He will set it all right! (Revelation 21:1-7)

This same pattern of authority in prayer continues in the book of Acts, following Jesus' death, burial, resurrection and ascension. Taking a "cue" from their leader, the followers of Jesus in the book of Acts did the same thing they had watched Him do.

For instance, one day Peter and John were on their way into the temple. A guy lame from birth – His muscles atrophied  so, obviously this would require more than a Jedi mind-trick, was laying near the beautiful gate of the temple hoping that people "on their way to church" would have compassion on him and give him some spare change.

Peter saw the dude! Evidently, He remembered the commission Jesus gave: "Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons! Freely you have received; freely give" (Matthew 10:8; Luke 9:1-5).  Peter immediately decided God’s agenda was more important than his agenda. So, he stopped. Here's the way it reads in the book of Acts: 

   Peter and John looked at him intently, and Peter said, “Look at us!” The lame man looked at them eagerly, expecting some money.
   But Peter said, “I don’t have any silver or gold for you. But I’ll give you what I have. In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, get up and walk!” —Acts 3:4-6 NLT

   Then Peter took the lame man by the right hand and helped him up. And as he did, the man’s feet and ankles were instantly healed and strengthened. He jumped up, stood on his feet, and began to walk! Then, walking, leaping, and praising God, he went into the Temple with them. —Acts 3:7-8 NLT

Peter commanded healing! " the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, get up and walk!" 

Have you ever wondered, Why do we pray “in the name of Jesus”?

The “name of Jesus” is more than a cute tag or phrase to stick at the end of prayer. Here's the way one scholar describes it: 

“In [Jewish] thought, a name doesn’t just identify or distinguish a person; it expresses the very nature of [that person’s] being.  Hence the power of the person is present and available in the name of the person.”  —Longnecker quoted in Holman New Testament Commentary

Did you get that? "...the power of the person is present and available in the name of the person." 

To pray “in the name of Jesus” literally means to pray “by virtue of Jesus’ character, authority and power.”

To pray or do anything in “the name of Jesus” means to “…act consistent with His will; to do what He would do if He were here, to act in His authority and with His delegated power.”

When we pray “in the name of Jesus” it's not a cute cliché that we put at the end of every prayer to somehow "Christian-ize" that prayer. When we pray in Jesus' name, we are saying, “I’m bringing everything Jesus is… Everything He has… All that He has done… All that He is presently doing… I’m bringing it all into this situation! I’m not standing here in my own strength or ability, I’m standing here in the strength, power, authority and ability of Jesus Himself!”

The name of Jesus represents “everything Jesus is and everything Jesus can do.” When we pray in His name, we are believing God to do what Jesus would do if He were here! 

So, today, dear child of God, if you are struggling, suffering or in pain, speak to the afflicted part of your body. Do not ignore or deny the pain, but in humble reliance upon Jesus, speak healing, grace and wholeness to your body, in the mighty name of Jesus Christ! humble reliance upon Jesus, speak healing, grace 
and wholeness to your body, 
in the mighty name of Jesus Christ! 

Thursday, March 16, 2017

A Theology of Healing - Part 1

In Exodus 15:26 God announced and revealed Himself to His people with these incredible words: "...I am the Lord who heals you." The Hebrew term is "Jehovah-Rapha." 

I fully believe God still heals. In this series of posts, I will be sharing a theology of healing...

A Theology of Healing:

1. God is loving and God is good. 

A.W. Tozer once wrote, "What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us." 

The Bible describes God as a God who is loving and good.

I love the way Sally-Lloyd Jones in The Jesus Storybook Bible describes God’s heart for His kids.

She describes our rebellion against God, and how we broke God's law and God's heart by doing our own thing and going our own way. Then, Sally writes:

…in another story, it would all be over and that would have been…THE END.  

But not in this Story.

God loved His children too much to let the story end there.  Even though He knew He would suffer, God had a plan – a magnificent dream.  One day, He would get His children back.  One day, He would make the world their perfect home again.  And one day, He would wipe away every tear from their eyes. 

You see, no matter what, in spite of everything, God would love His children – with a Never Stopping, Never Giving Up, Unbreaking, Always and Forever Love.  —Sally Lloyd-Jones 
The prophet Jeremiah described God's love like this:

The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.” —Jeremiah 31:3 NIV

The Message translates that passage like this: “I’ve never quit loving you and never will. Expect love, love, and more love! —Jeremiah 31:3 MSG

The most famous verse in the Bible is probably John 3:16. It describes God's love like this:

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16 NIV

God is loving and God is good

You are good, and what you do is good… —Psalm 119:68 NIV

GOD is good to one and all; everything he does is suffused with grace. —Psalm 145:9 MSG

The New Testament stresses the fact that Jesus is the perfect revelation of the heart of God. In fact, Jesus said, “If you’ve seen Me, you’ve seen the Father…” —John 14:9

Finally, in Matthew 7:11 Jesus described God's heart for us like this:

…if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him. —Matthew 7:11 NLT

God is loving and God is good! 

2. Sickness is usually not the result of personal sin. 

Unfortunately, the church sometimes perpetuates pain, shame and guilt on those who are suffering and sick among us by sometimes subtly and, at other times, not so subtly implying that sickness is a result of personal sin and failure.

Jesus forever set the record straight on this issue in John 9. I love the way The Message reads:

   Walking down the street, Jesus saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked, “Rabbi, who sinned: this man or his parents, causing him to be born blind?”
   3-5 Jesus said, “You’re asking the wrong question. You’re looking for someone to blame. There is no such cause-effect here. Look instead for what God can do…” —John 9:1-5 MSG

I love that! "You're looking for someone to blame. There is no such cause-effect here. Look instead for what God can do..."

In other words, "Instead of spending loads of time and energy in theological speculation as to what caused this guy's illness, why not look for God to show up, show out and do what only God can do? Why not look for ways you can partner with God and minister grace, kindness and healing to this man?"  

At a2 Church, we reject any system, structure or belief system related to sickness and healing that produces guilt, shame and escalates the pain of people who are already suffering. This is not the model of the New Testament, and it is certainly not the model Jesus provided for us.

...we reject any system, structure or belief system related to sickness and healing 
that produces guilt, shame and escalates the pain of people 
who are already suffering. 

3. Jesus healed hundreds, possibly thousands of people in the New Testament. He is able and willing to heal today! 

Healing was a common aspect of Jesus’ ministry. It shows up all throughout the gospels.  One of my favorite passages is Matthew 4:23-24.

Jesus traveled throughout the region of Galilee, teaching in the synagogues and announcing the Good News about the Kingdom. And he healed every kind of disease and illness. 24 News about him spread as far as Syria, and people soon began bringing to him all who were sick. And whatever their sickness or disease, or if they were demon possessed or epileptic or paralyzed—he healed them all. —Matthew 4:23-24 NLT

The New Testament indicates that Jesus healed everyone who came to him. When He walked this planet, if someone asked, they were healed!  Jesus healed everyone who came to Him, everyone who asked Him for healing, and, He even healed some people who didn’t ask!

Three Important Realities:
  • God is able to heal!
Most people don’t question this statement, they readily agree, “God is able…”

  • God is able and willing to heal!
This is where the statement gets a little more difficult for some. Some people don’t doubt God’s ability to heal, but they question His willingness or desire to heal, especially to heal them.

As a pastor, this has been interesting and heartbreaking to me. Many people believe that God is not only able but willing to do something loving, gracious, kind and even, miraculous, for someone else, especially someone they view as being morally or spiritually superior. Their thought process often looks something like this: “Well, maybe for you? Maybe for someone exceptionally good?”

Unfortunately, a significant number of people have trouble believing that God is willing to help someone as broken, jacked-up and messed-up as themselves!

The good news of the Gospel is that those are the only kinds of people God helps, because 
those are the only kinds of people who exist!

All of us are broken, jacked-up, messed-up and sinful! That was the reason for the cross! I love the way Tim Keller describes this:

“The gospel is this: We are more sinful and flawed in ourselves than we ever dared believe, yet at the very same time we are more loved and accepted in Jesus Christ than we ever dared hope.” —Tim Keller

Romans 5:8 says it like this:

...God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. —Romans 5:8 NLT

  • God is able and willing to heal me!
This is where the statement gets even more challenging and difficult for a significant number of people! “Sure God is able… Sure, He’s willing (to heal someone else)… But I’m not certain He’s willing to heal me?”

Mark 1 gives us an example of a guy who struggled with the same kind of mental hang-ups!

A man with leprosy came and knelt in front of Jesus, begging to be healed. “If you are willing, you can heal me and make me clean,” he said. Mark 1:40

It’s interesting that this guy didn’t doubt Jesus’ ability for one moment when it came to healing! He knew Jesus could heal! He said matter of factly, You can heal me…” His only question was, “If you are willing…”

Moved with compassion, Jesus reached out and touched him. “I am willing,” he said. “Be healed!” 42 Instantly the leprosy disappeared, and the man was healed. —Mark 1:40-42 NLT

First of all, note those three words, "moved with compassion." One of Jesus' primary motives for healing in the New Testament was His compassion. When Jesus saw sickness, pain and suffering, He was "moved with compassion." 

And then Jesus established the record as to whether or not He is willing when He said, “I am willing…”

We'll continue unpacking a theology of healing tomorrow. Until then, I leave you with these three beautiful and important realties:

Three Important Realities:

God is able to heal!
God is able and willing to heal!
God is able and willing to heal me!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

4 Ways God Heals:

2 Corinthians 1:20 contains an amazing statement!
“…no matter how many promises God has made, they are ‘YES!’ in Jesus Christ…” —2 Corinthians 1:20 NIV
In this series of blog posts, I want to explore God’s promises to heal. In today’s post, I want to explore four ways God heals.
Four Types of Healing:
When we talk about healing, I think it’s important to describe four ways God still heals today.
1) The natural recuperative process
God designed your body to heal itself. Every person reading this blog has experienced “natural healing.” If God hadn’t designed your body to heal itself, the first time you cut your finger, you would have bled to death. But God put our bodies together in an amazing way.
For instance, the moment you cut your hand… Immediately a combination of clotting blood cells and replacement skin cells begin a patch job. Every second, as your heart beats, tiny bits of mineral and organic material are sent to parts of the body that need it, performing ongoing repairs that will never finish.[1]  Your body actually renews and repairs itself every day…
A virus enters your body, and your white blood cells are launched into action. Like a hunting dog on the trail of its prey, your white blood cells hunt down the perpetrator of the virus to kill and destroy it! God came up with that design!
God has designed your body to heal itself. This is one of the reasons David made this statement in Psalm 139, “I will praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made…” —Psalm 139:14
2) Medical treatment
Let me ask a few questions… Just answer them as you read the blog…
Have you ever had stitches?
Have you ever had a broken bone?
Have you ever had minor surgery?
Have you ever had major surgery?
Have you ever had cosmetic surgery? Okay… I was just having fun on the last one…
But seriously, if you have ever had any type of stitches, surgery, care for broken bones or medical procedures, you’ve experienced God’s “natural” and “medical” means of healing the human body.
We should never discount God’s ability to heal through medicine. Just a few days ago someone described to me the “miracle” of the way the machine that does an “MRI” works. It’s incredible! And, it’s only possible because of the way God designed our bodies and because of the wisdom, ability and insight God has given to scientists and medical doctors!
We have a number of nurses in the a2 Church family. I have several doctors that I’m privileged to call, “personal friends,” and I personally thank God for His ability to heal through the means of medical treatment.
Recently a2 Church hosted Dr. Chauncey Crandall. Dr. Crandall appears on several lists as one of the top cardiologists in the United States. Dr. Crandall is a Duke and Yale educated physician. In other words, the dude is super smart! But he is also a follower of Jesus and has personally seen God do extraordinary miracles! I love Dr. Crandall’s philosophy. He wants to give his patient’s the “best of medicine and the best of Jesus.” That's a great philosophy! 
God heals through “medical” treatment…
3) Ultimate and complete healing
The Bible calls death “the last enemy” (1 Cor 15:26). That's right, Harry Potter fans! J.K. Rowling wasn't the first to say that!  
The Biblical view of death is that death is an “enemy.” It’s an “enemy” that God has already defeated through Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection. Because of that, 1 Corinthians 15 contains an incredible description of what will one day occur!
A trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised in a moment, in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, never to perish again! (1 Cor 15:52)
These physical bodies will become incorruptible, spiritual, glorious and powerful! (1 Cor 15:42-44) They will never experience sickness, pain, affliction, deformity or disease again.
Cancer, MS and ALS will be consigned to hell! Operating rooms, doctors, nurses, ambulances and hospital emergency rooms will become a thing of history, which has been eclipsed by eternity!
Nobody will cry, except for joy. Nobody will grieve! Octogenarians, who currently sit, blank-faced, under blankets in wheelchairs in what is commonly referred to as “old folks homes” will be given new life and new youth that will never be stolen by the march of time again!
Every deaf ear will be unblocked! Every damaged limb will be made whole! Every blind eye will see! Autism, Down’s syndrome, schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s will be swallowed up in victory.
And “the last enemy to be destroyed is death” (1 Cor 15:26; 52-58). This is the hope we have as children of God!
4) Divine and miraculous healing
We believe in God’s ability and willingness to do the miraculous today! We’ve actually seen God do the miraculous at a2 Church!
I recently read this in a blog post by Andrew Wilson, a very well-respected author and pastor in London. Andrew was quoting a story that appeared in the Daily Mail and on the BBC in London…
“A woman who had been wheelchair-bound for years was prayed for in Jesus’ name! She was immediately healed and got out of her wheelchair… Months later, she phoned the benefits office to stop her disability benefits… Why? Because she had been miraculously healed… She was told by the benefits office that “the system did not allow for miracles,” so she would have to go on receiving her benefits, (which lead the Daily Mail and the BBC in London to run an outraged story about it)…” [2]
I love that!
God is still doing the miraculous! 
Over the next several posts and in the coming days, I’ll attempt to unpack what I believe to be a biblical theology of healing. I look forward to going on this journey with you. In the mean time, I am praying Paul’s prayer for the church at Thessalonica over you and me:
“May God Himself, the God who makes everything holy and whole, and You are making me holy and whole… You are putting me together – spirit, soul and body! You are keeping me fit for the coming of the Master.” —1 Thessalonians 5:23
[1] – Andrew Wilson –
[2] Ibid

Monday, March 6, 2017

A Daily Declaration of Faith

“Have you realized that most of your unhappiness in life is due to the fact that you are listening to yourself instead of talking to yourself?” —D. Martin Lloyd-Jones

A Daily Declaration of Faith

I am a child of God! (John 1:12; Rom 8:16)

I was loved and chosen by God before He created the world (Eph 1:4, 11)

I have been adopted into God’s very own family! (Eph 1:5; Rom 8)

I am an heir of God and a co-heir with Jesus Christ! (Rom 8:17; Gal 4:6-7)

My sin has been forgiven!
   My sin has been forgiven!
      My sin has been forgiven! Ps 103:3; Eph 1:7; 1 Jn 1:9; Col 1:13-14

My past has been redeemed and forgotten! (Isa 43:25; Col 1:14; Heb 10:17)

I have been rescued from the kingdom of darkness and transferred to the kingdom of God’s own Son, who purchased my freedom and has forgiven all my sin! (Col 1:13-14)

I have been justified by faith! Because of Jesus, when God looks at me, He sees me “just-as-if-I’d” never sinned (Rom 3:24; 5:1).

I am completely and unconditionally accepted by God! (Rom 15:7)

God loves me!
   He loves me!
      He loves me! (Jn 3:16; Rom 5:8; Eph 2:4-5)

Jesus actually calls me “His friend.” (Jn 15:15)

I am a new person. My old life is gone. A new life has begun. My past is forgiven. My old life has been forgotten. God is making everything new! (2 Cor 5:17; Rev 21:5)

The God who makes everything holy and whole is making me holy and whole! He is putting me together – spirit, soul and body… (1 Thess 5:23)

I am complete and whole because of Jesus Christ! (Col 2:9-10)

Condemnation, shame and regret have lost their power over my life! I no longer live under a continuous, low-lying black cloud! A new power is in operation! The Spirit of life in Christ, like a strong wind, has magnificently cleared the air and I am free… (Rom 8:1-2)

Yes, I am free! For if the son sets you free, you are free indeed! I know the truth, and the truth has set me free! Jesus has set me free! (Jn 8:36; Gal 5:1)

No weapon fashioned against me will succeed. Every voice raised up to accuse me will be silenced. This is my heritage as a servant of God! (Isa 54:17)

I am born of God and overcome this world! (1 Jn 5:14)

Greater is the one who lives in me than the one who lives in the world! (1 Jn 4:4)

I am more than a conqueror through the one who loved me! (Rom 8:37)

I overcome the evil one by the blood of the Lamb, and the word of my testimony… (IRev 12:11)

God has miraculously given me everything I need for living a godly life — the life I was meant to live! He has given me great and precious promises that enable me to overcome the garbage of this world, and be transformed to become more and more like Jesus! (2 Pet 1:3-4)

I walk in peace, because the peace of God which exceeds anything I can understand, guards my heart and mind as I stay connected to Jesus! (Phil 4:7)

I have a purpose… I am God’s masterpiece, created in Christ Jesus, to do good works, which God planned for me long ago (Pro 16:4; Jer 29:11; Ps 33:11; Eph 2:10)

I have a future… My future is not determined by my past, but by God’s extravagant and relentless grace that is constantly at work in my life (Jer 29:11; Phil 3:12-14; Ps 31:14-16; Titus 2:11-14)

I have hope
   I have hope
      I have hope… (1 Pet 1:3-6; Ps 39:7; Jer 29:11; Rom 5:4-5)

My hope is as certain and sure as Jesus’ victory over death and the promises of an all-powerful, sovereign, ever-faithful and steadfast God!

Because of Jesus, I am healed! (1 Pet 2:24; Isa 53:5; Ps 103:3)

Because of Jesus, I am holy! (Heb 2:11)

Because of Jesus, I am never alone (Matt 28:20; Isa 41:10)

Because of Jesus, I am filled with the Holy Spirit. God Himself, in the person of the Holy Spirit, now makes His home in me! (Acts 2:4; Eph 5:18)

Because of Jesus, I have eternal life! (Jn 3:16)

Because of Jesus, God will meet all my needs according to His riches in glory… (Phil 4:19)

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength… (Phil 4:13)

And, the God who started a good work in me will be faithful to finish it… (Phil 1:6)

These are the promises of God over my life!
This is the word of God over my life!
I speak this all in the mighty name of Jesus!  

Wednesday, March 1, 2017


Research indicates that most human beings speak at a rate of 150-300 words a minute, or nearly 50,000 thoughts per day. The mind can listen at a rate of about 500-600 words per minute.

That’s why right now, while you’re reading this post, you are also having a simultaneous dialogue with yourself about what you think about what you're reading, while also putting together this week’s grocery list at the same time. 

On top of that, research indicates that our internal dialogue – the conversations we have with ourselves – take place at a rate of 1,300 words per minute — or 5-7 times the rate at we speak and 2.5 times the rate at which we listen. Because our mind sees in pictures, we can see a thought in a nanosecond.  

Here’s the rub... One counselor says that “seventy percent of the words we say to ourselves are negative.” Seventy percent! And most of this negative self-talk is subconscious or unconscious. That means, we usually aren’t even aware of all that we are saying to ourselves. We’re usually just on autopilot. Furthermore, we repeat the same statements – the same negative self-talk to ourselves  95% of the time. 

Self-talk like this… 

  • “I can’t do this.”
  • “My marriage is falling apart. My kids are a nightmare!"
  • “I’ll never have enough money.”
  • “I’ll always struggle with this addiction… I’m an addict… I’ll always be an addict…" 
  • "I’m fat… I’m ugly… I’m dumb… I’m inferior…"
  • "I’ll always be late..."
  • "I’ll always be this way…"
  • "I'm not good enough… Not worthy enough…"
  • "I’ll never be accepted, loved or wanted…”

You get the picture. Unfortunately, this negative self-talk sets the direction and forms the foundation of our lives. It's often dictated or driven by one or any combination of four things… 

Four Counterfeits That Influence “Self-Talk”:


Fear can be paralyzing and life-altering. The opposite of fear isn't hate, it's love. This is why so many of us struggle with insecurity and inferiority. Fear produces these toxic emotions. The good news is that there is an answer! 

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear... 
—1 John 4:16-18 NIV

It’s interesting that God’s name has been used for centuries to motivate people to live their lives bound by fear. We even say things like this to our kids: “I’m going to put the fear of God in you…”

But what’s amazing is that if we really were to “put the fear of God in someone,” then they would be free from fear, because according to 1 John 4:18, “perfect loves drives out fear.”

Contrary to the way many of us have been raised, God doesn’t want to keep you bound in fear. The opposite of fear is love, and God wants to saturate you with love (see Romans 5:1-5). 

Fear isn’t always a by-product of our circumstances or situations. Sometimes fear is an indication of what we really believe about God. "Do I believe God loves me?  Do I believe God is with me? Do I believe God is for me? Do I believe God actually wants to bless me?" 


Guilt is how we feel about the things we’ve done. It's the normal response of our conscience when we rebel against God, amp up on other people, or hurt the people we love. Guilt is self-condemnation for the things we do… It is not always bad… In fact, without it, we would probably all be narcissists. 


Shame, on the other hand is devastating! It's how we feel about ourselves. It's self-condemnation for who we are. It’s a feeling of heaviness or weight that hangs over us… It’s a sense of disgust that we have with ourselves… 

Shame isn't about the bad things we’ve done, it’s about who we are. It says to us day after day, “You are unworthy! You are unloved! You are inadequate! You are inferior. “ 


Condemnation is the accusing voice of the evil one who regularly whispers to us that we are bad, unworthy and unloveable. It can be debilitating. 

How can we break free from the devastating power of negative self-talk? 

It is possible! 

Revelation 12:11 says, "They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony..."

Positive declarations and affirmations in and of themselves aren't enough. They may temporarily change your mood or attitude, but they lack the power to change your life.

God's Word, on the other hand, is powerful! 

Hebrews 4:12 says that "...the word of God is full of living power! It is alive and active."  

Isaiah 55:11 says, “…the words You [God] speak will not return to You without producing results. They will do exactly what You sent them to do.”

Changing our self-talk is the by-product of three crucial decisions that we must make daily. 

Three Crucial Decisions We Make Daily:

1. Stay focused on the finished work of Christ! 

We can change our self-talk by reminding ourself of what Jesus accomplished when He died for our sins and in our place! By resting in the fact that Jesus said, "It is finished!" (Jn 19:30)

By reminding ourself of His victorious, death-defying, hell-defeating resurrection! (Hebrews 12:1-3)

Religion will always be spelled, "D-O." It's about what you've got to DO to be made right with God! The Gospel, on the other hand, is always spelled, "D-O-N-E." It is about what Jesus has already DONE

Daily we need to remind ourselves about the extravagant grace and amazing love of God demonstrated by what Jesus did on the cross! Every time we do, it kicks Satan and his minions in the teeth and reaffirms our identity in Christ! 

Remember, "They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb..." (Rev 12:11)

2. Read, meditate on and declare the Word of God over your life! 

We can change our self-talk by reading, meditating on and declaring the Word of God over our lives. Remember, "faith comes by hearing and hearing the word of God!" (Romans 10:17)

I love what D.L. Moody wrote more than one hundred years ago. Some of the language is a bit archaic, but it's so good. 

"Take the promises of God. Let a man feed for a month on the promises of God, and he will not talk about how poor he is. You hear people say, ‘Oh, my leanness! How lean I am!” It is not their leanness, but their laziness. If you would only read from Genesis to Revelation and see all the promises of God to Abraham, to Isaac, to Jacob, to the Jews, and to the Gentiles, and to all His people everywhere – if you would spend a month feeding on the promises of God – you wouldn’t go about complaining how poor you are. You would lift up your head and proclaim the riches of His Grace, because you couldn’t help doing it!” —Dwight L Moody, 1837-1899

3. Stay connected in a life-giving community! 

You need people in your life who remind you of your identity as a son or daughter of God, who agree together with you in prayer, who remind you that you are not alone, that God is for you and not against you, that you will get through this! (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12; Matthew 18:19)

These people are not judgmental or critical, they simply refuse to allow you to drift into self-imposed negativity and self-condemnation. When you are weak, they provide much needed strength! They lift you up! They encourage and inspire you! If necessary, they give you a "loving" kick in the backside to knock you out of the self-pity that does nothing but keep you locked in a downward spiral!  They challenge you to keep trusting in the finished work of the cross, to remember "whose" you are and who you are, and to keep declaring God's Word over your life! 

These three simple decisions will help you transform your self-talk and grow into your identity as a much loved child of God!