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Wordwise Insight, Issue #073
September 14, 2010

WORDWISE INSIGHT is the free monthly newsletter of


BIBLE INSIGHTS (and Reader Q & A): Are generational sins and curses biblical? Can we, for example, be affected by curses placed upon our great grandparents?

WORDWISE HYMNS: My Blog called Wordwise Hymns for you to check out!

MORE ARTICLES: Can Christians Be Demon Possessed? and the subject of Christians and Phobias

DO YOU HAVE A QUESTION? See below for how to send it to us.


Are you finding Wordwise helpful? And do you have your own website? We would be delighted if you would provide a link on your site to ours. This will enable your friends to find us too! Check the page on the Wordwise website called "Link to Us," and follow the simple instructions. Click on Link to Us.

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LIKE TO ASK A QUESTION? On a Bible topic or passage of Scripture? Or one about a hymn or gospel song? Click on Questions from You.



(Are They Biblical?)

QUESTION: Recently I was asked to discuss the Bible's teaching on the subject of generational sins, and generational curses. This is the view that the sins of past generations, and God's punishment of them, can extend down the years, and directly affect our welfare today. That a curse pronounced by God (or even by some individual invoking demon powers), can continue to affect generation after generation.

The idea is said to be based on certain statements in the Bible. For example: "I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations" (Exod. 20:5, italics mine; cf. 34:6-7; Num. 14:18; Deut. 5:9).

So, is it possible that the problems we're having in our lives today may be traced back to sins committed by, or curses put on, our parents, or grandparents, or even our great-grandparents?

ANSWER: This concept is prevalent in a lot of self-described spiritual warfare and deliverance ministries. It's also present, in a secularized form, in some theories of psychology and psychotherapy. And it's a tantalizing idea. To some extent, it fuels the inborn desire we have to find someone else to blame for our troubles. When the Lord faced Adam and Eve with their disobedience in Eden (Gen. 3:1-13), Adam tried to blame Eve (and God, as well!), and Eve tried to pass the buck to the serpent (Satan). And that's been going on ever since!

It's not difficult to see that what we do as parents has an influence on our children Our conduct brings certain consequences that touch their lives. Racial prejudice provides an example. If children hear parents speaking hatefully of people with a different ethnic heritage or different skin colour, the children can pick up on that. And they in turn may pass the same way of thinking on to their children. With a boost from our sin nature--wrong-headedness and bad habits can certainly show up in one generation after another.

That is likely what's behind ...

To see the full article on this important subject, click on Generational Sins and Curses.


Come and Pay Us a Visit!

In the spring I developed a blog that is called Wordwise Hymns. As the title suggests, it is about hymns, and church music in general.

But as many of you will know, a blog is especially designed to facilitate a conversation on its particular subject. Readers can easily post comments about what they see, and I'm able to reply. I hope you will take part in the discussion!

A Special Feature
There is something unique about this blog that I don't believe has ever been done before. It contains what we could call a Hymn Almanac. If you want to know what happened in the history of hymn writing on any particular day, just click on the blog and you'll see!

My hope is that the blog will add to the value of the website and this newsletter, and promote some profitable exchanges on the subject of sacred music.

What happened on this day in hymnology? To find out, click Wordwise Hymns.


Below are links to two other articles that may be of interest. The first addresses the issue of whether Christians can be demon possessed. The other relates to a concern about Christians having phobias.

Can Christians Be Demon Possessed?

Phobias and Christians

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