Word Curses Gone Wild
-Donald J. Ibbitson, PhD
Words have creative power, for good or evil (Prov. 18:21, Matt 17:20,James 3:8,9) and part of our teaching for counseling and deliverance ministry preparation involves breaking word curses. However, we see this notion of word curses in the Body of Christ carried to what we believe is an extreme that can result in us looking silly to others. We are called to live and walk in faith but there needs to be sensibility.
During the ministry time at my church a few years back, I went up for prayer for healing. A dear lady asked me afterwards why I went up. I said that I had a painfully sore shoulder that was keeping me awake and night I wanted relief. Her response was, “Oh, you shouldn’t claim that” and proceeded to tell me that I was already healed and that I should not use those words.
When Jesus (or the disciples) came upon blind or lame people, did he berate them and tell them they weren’t blind? Of course not; he simply healed them! Is it wrong for a Christian who may be blind (or deaf or crippled) to state the obvious? I think not. When a blind person gets their healing and sees, they will no longer going to say, if asked, “I am blind”. Or, in my case, when my shoulder was healed it wasn't sore anymore!
We are not trying to trivialize or minimize the power of words we speak. Indeed, self-imposed word curses that take ownership of certain conditions are indeed spiritually damaging and open the doors for demonic torment. Declarations like, “I am ADD”, “I am bipolar”, “I am an alcoholic” or “my depression”, “my arthritis” and so on are unbiblical declarations that Christians must avoid. We are who God says we are in His Word!
Some of these labels that the world uses freely are unwittingly embraced and “claimed” by people which often limit God’s ability to do a work in a person’s life. In a similar vein, “I am stupid”, “No one will ever love me”, “I’m a loser” are destructive spiritual weapons that the demonic kingdom uses against us because we do in fact take ownership over those descriptions and declare them us.
What is the proper use of words in these instances? If you have a cold, we contend it’s okay to say I have a cold because that is your present physical condition. You are not taking ownership but describing a current condition from which you need healing. Imagine how silly you would look if you went into work (you should proably stay at home!) and declared that you did not have a cold even as you are coughing and dealing with draining sinues!
If you are battling an addiction to alcohol, why not say, “I’m a lover of God battling an addiction to alcohol”. There is hope and life in those words; contrasted with “I’m an alcoholic”. Also, rather than saying, “my arthritis”, why not say that “Jesus is my Healer and I am pursuing healing for this arthritis. It’s done in the spirit realm already and it is going to show up in my body soon!”
There is indeed great power in the tongue but it is also a vehicle for communication to the world in which we live in. We must guard it but let’s let wisdom and common sense be our guides too in greater measure!