Breaking Generational Curses

Think about your family line. Do you see any recurring patterns of behavior or sickness in multiple family members? Of cancer? How about divorce? Depression? Suicide? Poverty? Alcoholism? Drug addiction? Allergies? Anger? It’s possible that these are due to a generational curse.

How does this happen? In the Bible, a curse is the opposite of a blessing. Curses can come upon those who have walked away from the blessing of God due to unrepented sin. Therefore, we can say that generational curses are an accumulation of negative effects caused by the sin of a person’s ancestors in what they did, believed, or practiced against God.
The principle of generational curses began in the Ten Commandments. It speaks of blessing the generations of those who love God, and punishing the children for the sins of the parents down to the fourth generation of those who reject God:

Exodus 20: 5-6 “For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, 6 but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.”

Although this article is focused on generational curses, we don’t want to gloss over that God says he will show love to a thousand generations. He is a loving father who wants to bless his children.

However, when Satan gains access into a family bloodline through unrepented sin, he can have influence over them, and the generations to come. Satan is legalistic and if he has legal rights over someone, he will use his power to cause pain and oppression.

As Scripture says in John 10:10, “The thief (i.e. Satan) comes only to steal and kill and destroy.”

Jesus Christ died on the cross so our sins can be forgiven. One common misconception, though, is that when a person becomes a Christian, generational curses can’t affect them anymore. Faith in Jesus provides salvation, but does not automatically release us from generational curses. In Matthew 5:18, Jesus states the moral law, the Ten Commandments, are still in effect today and should be obeyed.

Now that we know what generational curses are, how they begin, and that even as Christians they can still affect us, the question is: Is it possible to break a generational curse? When we look for an answer to this question in the Bible, we discover there are several instances where people confessed and repented for the sins of their ancestors.

Nehemiah confessed his fathers’ and Israel’s sin (Nehemiah 1:5-6): “I confess the sins we Israelites, including myself and my father’s house, have committed against you.”

In Leviticus 26:40-42 (NIV), the Lord says, “But if they will confess their sins and the sins of their ancestors … which made me hostile toward them so that I sent them into the land of their enemies … I will remember my covenant with Jacob and my covenant with Isaac, and my covenant with Abraham, and I will remember the land.” See also Ezra 9:5-9 and Ezra 10:1.

As you can see, generational curses can be broken and reconciliation with God is possible. We do this through repenting for our sins, and the sins of our ancestors. We also need to ask God to forgive our sins, and the sins of our ancestors. Once repentance and forgiveness has happened, we can command the enemy to leave us, and our future generations, for good. As Christians, we have been given the authority by Jesus to trample serpents and scorpions and overcome all the power of the enemy (Luke 10:19).

It’s important to know that generational healing is neither about casting blame nor dishonoring our ancestors. It is asking God to shine His light in the areas that need healing in our lineage to break the punishment and replace the curses with blessings.

Generational curses were a known concept in Jesus’s day. John 9:1-3 gives this example: “Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind from birth. And the disciples asked Him, saying, ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?’

In this case, the disciples thought the man’s blindness may have been caused by his parent’s sin through a generational curse. However, Jesus made it clear that in this instance, neither the man nor his parents had sinned, but he was blind to demonstrate the glory of God in his healing.

It should be noted that not all illnesses are caused by a curse. However, if there is a pattern of the same physical or mental health issue in the family line, it is likely a generational curse.

The cycle does not typically stop until someone in the family seeks God to forgive the sins and breaks the curse(s). For many people, generational healing is critical in order to experience freedom and live the abundant life Christ died for us to have.

The Moving Mountains workbook walks you through a prayer to break generational curses. We have received many testimonies from people who have experienced physical healing and freedom from bondages. To God be all the glory!

Generational healing testimonies from the Moving Mountains workbook:

To start your journey to healing and wholeness in Jesus, the Moving Mountains workbook can be found here.

Note: the Moving Mountains workbook can be done individually or in a small group (teen and adult versions are available). For small groups, leaders use the Moving Mountains facilitator guide which includes questions and commentary to engage the participants in meaningful discussion.
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