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Change your “Never” to “Nevertheless” or “Someday”

There’s a dangerous way of speaking that is going around, and even I catch myself saying it sometimes, but it is the use of the word, “never”.  It is used in the Bible 87 times.  Another word, “Nevertheless” is used over 90 times.  To get a definition of the words I turn to google and I find – Never – “At no time in the past or future; on no occasion; not ever”.  Nevertheless can mean “in spite of that” – and in other cases can mean – “still – nonetheless – notwithstanding – though – however”.  There are some cases where the word “never” is used, but it is not very strongly used, and I haven’t done an in depth study to see how many times it is used.  The statement of Truth, which the word can be applied is that “unless you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior then you can never see the kingdom of heaven.”

Proverbs 18:21  says –

Death and life are in the power of the tongue,
And those who love it will eat its fruit.

Sometimes when people speak they use the word, “never”, and they do not know that they are speaking a word of curse into the person’s life and speaking death into their life.  “You’ll never amount to anything,”

“You’ll never grow unless you do ‘this’ or ‘that’,”

“You’ll never lose weight unless you go to the gym, or go on a diet,”

“Unless you pray everyday you’ll never see growth in your spiritual life.”

“You’ll never understand the Gospel, unless you understand this,” etc.

It’s called a persuasive technique and it is used to motivate people to take action, and even pastors use it from time to time, not knowing what they are doing.  They put a lot of emphasis on that word.   It is a warning for people, and often times they are used with true statements and a call to action, but it takes away the hope from the people, and people start believing, “You mean I have to do it this way or there’s no hope for me.”  There is only one fundamental statement of Truth, to which that applies, “Unless you accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior, you’ll never enter the kingdom of heaven.” We don’t want people to become hopeless or discouraged, we want them to be encouraged.  God rarely used the word, “never”, more often He used, “nevertheless”.  “Nevertheless” in the Hebrew word, “aken”, means “certainly, truly, surely, verily”.

So what’s the best was to take away the hopelessness for the person, whom your speaking to?  It’s to give them hope by saying, “Nevertheless” or “Someday.”

“Someday you’ll do something great.”

“You might seem like your not growing now, but someday you will see tremendous growth in your life.”

“You’re struggling with losing weight, but if you see how much God loves you and is willing to see you to health, then someday you’ll want to change your eating habits.”

“Prayer is really important, maybe someday you’ll see how much.”

“These Gospel concepts are important, I pray that the Lord reveals them to you.”

The reason why the word “never” can have a curse like effect, is because it gives the assumption that people are doomed to fail, unless they carry out the precondition.  Even if that is true, there is a better way of saying it, for example the statements I have given.

Words have power as we see in Matthew 21:19 –

19 And seeing a fig tree by the road, He came to it and found nothing on it but leaves, and said to it, “Let no fruit grow on you ever again.” Immediately the fig tree withered away.

I believe Jesus said this for two reasons, to show the power of words, and as symbology in relation to fruit in God’s Kingdom.   Jesus cursed a tree, I don’t believe He cursed people, but He had very powerful words to say.  Words are like a sword, they can cut.  Words can also bring healing.  Hitler changed a whole society through his words and brought destruction to Jewish people.  Just one wrong word uttered to someone can change the course of history.  You might want to also read James 3 as well.

Referring back to the statement of Truth given above, it is not exactly what the Bible says in those exact words using instead,

16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

But it does mention in several different ways that statement of Truth, which I don’t have time to get into right now, but you can study that for yourself.

There are two profound statements in the Word of God, which use the Word never –

23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’This is Jesus speaking, and I often seemed to have trouble with this verse, until I applied the definition of the word never, which can also mean “not ever” – over here it isoudepote – and if you apply the current definition of the word never, which hasn’t changed much in meaning, you get “And then I will declare to them, ‘Idid not ever know you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!”  Or if you apply the Thayer’s Lexicon to the verse, “And I will declare to the, ‘did not ever have any acquaintance with you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!”  As long as Jesus is your friend, or more than a friend in some cases and you have a relationship with Him, then this doesn’t apply to you, but you also have to take into the context the word “lawlessness” – which means unrighteousness -For an explanation of unrighteousness –  being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality,[c] wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving,[d] unmerciful; 32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.To be led by the Spirit, means you will avoid doing these things, but when you do find yourself doing these things be quick to confess, repent, and turn to God.  He is quick to forgive.
The other verse is – always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.[2 Timothy 3:7]In context -3 But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! For of this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres resisted Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, disapproved concerning the faith; but they will progress no further, for their folly will be manifest to all, as theirs also was.This describes the current situation right now with people in the body of Christ – the doctrines have been so spread apart, and put with different kinds of conjecture that even the people that want to preach the truth, end up believing lies because they have itching ears.  I want to put emphasis on the word, “unholy”  and having a form of godliness and denying it’s power.  Have you ever heard the expression “cleanliness is next to godliness” well this is a secular expression, but some people strictly believe that by being clean they can be godly, but there is no power in being clean.  What’s more important is an inward transformation of the heart that leads to repentance, or turning away from sin.  God is holy, so we should be holy like He is holy, and of course that takes an intimate walk with the Holy Spirit, and bringing yourself to the cross of Christ, and letting yourself go of all wickedness.  There are people including myself who are always learning, and learning is good, but we have to come the knowledge of the truth.  What is the truth?  The word truth in Greek is “aletheia”, and it is the same word which stands for Jesus when He says, I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.  That truth is Jesus.  So people are always learning and ‘never’ able to come to the knowledge of Jesus.

Those two verses Matthew 7:23, and 2 Timothy 3:7 are very closely tied together and I just made this discovery right now, but they are so closely tied together and when I have some more time I’ll get into the study of the word, truth, but for now I have to say that we have to be very careful with the words we use.  Especially when we are preaching or speaking to people because words have power.

We need to change negative confession and word curses over ourselves and other people’s lives to blessings that bring life.  Under the Abrahamic Covenant that says that “Blessed are those who bless you, and cursed are those who curse you” the believers and Israel is blessed under this blessing.”

Once a curse has taken root in a person’s life it can bring harmful side effects, and the only to reverse that is to speak blessing into their lives.  If someone has cursed you, then speak blessing through the Blood of Jesus upon your own life and reverse the curse.

Here’s a prayer for repentence for negative word confessions:

Heavenly Father,

Forgive me for anything wrong that I have said today, and let my words, thoughts, and attitudes be pleasing to you Lord.  Let my whole heart be consumed by the fire of your love, and let me speak blessings and receive blessings into my life.  Wash me in Your Precious Blood and purge my mouth from any ungodly words spoken today.  Free me from any hopelessness  or destructive path, which has been created by wrong words or actions.  Thank You.

Jesus Mighty Name I pray,

Amen.

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Being provoked to number the people

In 1 Chronicles 21 it says,

1 Now Satan stood up against Israel, and moved David to number Israel. 2 So David said to Joab and to the leaders of the people, “Go, number Israel from Beersheba to Dan, and bring the number of them to me that I may know it.
3 And Joab answered, “May the LORD make His people a hundred times more than they are. But, my lord the king, are they not all my lord’s servants? Why then does my lord require this thing? Why should he be a cause of guilt in Israel?”
4 Nevertheless the king’s word prevailed against Joab. Therefore Joab departed and went throughout all Israel and came to Jerusalem. 5 Then Joab gave the sum of the number of the people to David. All Israel had one million one hundred thousand men who drew the sword, and Judah had four hundred and seventy thousand men who drew the sword. 6 But he did not count Levi and Benjamin among them, for the king’s word was abominable to Joab.
7 And God was displeased with this thing; therefore He struck Israel. 8 So David said to God, “I have sinned greatly, because I have done this thing; but now, I pray, take away the iniquity of Your servant, for I have done very foolishly.”

I went through the same exact temptation at the beginning of the year when WordPress came out with it’s summary of statistics of what the blog was doing in the year 2011.  It was good to look at for your information, but when you begin to have pride, that this is what I have done, then there is a very humbling experience.  I went as far as taking the “Where are you from” section and calculating based on site views who visited from where and looking to see what were the most popular blog entries.  I guess I am not alone in looking at this presentation link, and my statement is not to condemn anyone, but I started to feel really bad after I realize what I had done.  I had gotten to the point where I was wrestling with God, that is this really a sin, do I still need to confess it? After all, God gave me this blog, and I have chosen to use it for Him, then the glory goes to Him.    There is one thing to confess it before God, but after looking at the video Are You too strong for God, I realized that this was something I needed to confess publicly.  There is something to be said for being transparent, where you don’t go hiding in corners and hoping that nobody sees what you do behind closed doors.  You may be embarrassed, and people may ridicule and persecute you, but it is something that needs to be done. It is called laying it all on the altar.  So that people know the real you and not some shadow or mask that you are hiding behind as far as the sin in your life.  It also takes listening to God to and knowing what is the right thing to do.  I may think that the numbering the people didn’t hurt anybody, but if I want to walk in complete health then I have to take this verse into consideration,

12 “When you take the census of the children of Israel for their number, then every man shall give a ransom for himself to the LORD, when you number them, that there may be no plague among them when you number them. Exodus 30:12

Thank God for Psalm 91, and verses like “a thousand shall fall at your side, and ten thousand by your right hand, but it shall not come near you.”