Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Repentance: Clean hands, pure heart


Psalm 24. 
When repentance happens, the Holy Spirit has been at work in conviction. It may come in remorse for sin or avoidance or even anger, but conviction is real.
We do not want the enemy to have a foothold in our lives (Ephesians 4:27; 5:11; 1 Thessalonians 5:22; Romans 16:19), because his agenda is to steal, kill, and destroy (John 10:10). Unconfessed sin is bondage in our lives that can hinder the Holy Spirit’s work in us. Want victory? Ask the Lord what hinders your freedom in Christ. Perhaps something like this, “Father, show me my sins where I have given a foothold to the devil (Ephesians 4:27; Psalm 139:23-24). Help me through repentance to take back that ground. I submit to You, Lord, and resist the devil, and he must flee before You, O Lord (James 4:7-10).” Listen and be obedient to take care of everything standing between you and your Lord’s work in your life.
1.      Confess and repent of unforgiveness and bitterness toward others. Deal with personal offense and bitterness from broken relationships in which you were hurt. Name the people who have wronged or hurt you with rejection, betrayal, abuse, abandonment, those toward whom you have a grudge, people you resent or envy, and those who have sinned against you in any way.
2.      Confess and repent of broken relationships in which you hurt someone else. Look for ways to provide restitution to those you have sinned against.
3.      Confess and repent of actions or patterns of rebellion, insubordination, or stubbornness. Confess the names of people, authority figures, and institutions against which you have rebelled. Include patterns of personal willfulness, defiance, or dishonoring God-ordained authorities. Repent of rebelling against God and sinning against His rightful authority in your life. Ask God to restore the ground in your life that you gave as a foothold to the enemy through your rebellion and submit your life afresh to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
4.      Confess and repent of lies you have believed. Lies and deceptions you may have believed and acted upon may include defense mechanisms like denial, withdrawal, blame, shame, fears of failure, fears of rejection, fears of abandonment, distorted thinking, lying to yourself. Acknowledge your self-deception and the falsehoods you believed. Renounce the father of lies. Ask the Holy Spirit of truth to guide you into the truth that brings freedom (John 8:32).
5.      Confess and repent of areas of pride. Ask the lord to show you what he calls pride in your life (James 4:7). Renounce pride, arrogance, self-sufficiency, independence, unteachable attitudes, selfishness, etc. Humble yourself before the Lord (James 4:10). Ask the Lord to clothe you with humility, to help you submit to others, and to resist your enemy who wants to devour you (1 Peter 5:5-9). Ask the Lord to help you live humbly before Him and others.
6.      Confess and repent of sexual immorality. Ask the Lord’s forgiveness for your sin. Ask the Lord to break unholy soul ties between you and each person by name (1 Corinthians 6:16-18). Destroy all tokens of affection from sinful relationships.
7.      Confess and repent of bondages. Bondages can be formed with people, things, or words. Ask the Lord to show you what relatives, friends, people, hobbies, organizations, occupation, place, or way of life to which you have been too strongly tied. You are too strongly tied to something or someone who has a stronger call on your allegiance than the Lord Jesus does. Confess addictions and vows (“I will never . .  .” or “I will always . . . “ or “No one will ever make me . . . “ or “I will not be like . . . .” or “I will not say . . .”) Confess and repent of the stronghold these  things have had on you. Renounce them and say, “I break your power in my life in Jesus’ name.”
8.      Confess and repent of generational sins and bondages. Ask the Lord to show you sinful traits and behaviors that have plagued your family through the years. Ask the Lord to show you these curses operating in your family line. Renounce organizations that control your allegiance or those in your family by means of secret oaths. Disown these bondages, renounce them, and ask the Holy Spirit to cleanse the iniquity of your ancestors that may be affecting you and your children (Exodus 20:5-6; 34:6-7; Numbers 14:18; Deuteronomy 5:9-10; 28:15-45). Ask the Holy Spirit to fill you and be glorified in your life and in your family.
9.      Confess and repent of involvement in the occult, cults, and false religions. Renounce by name all involvement in counterfeit spirituality and the works of darkness and repent of your participation. Destroy any tokens or items of allegiance to false gods, false religions, and the kingdom of darkness. Commit to being led by the guidance of the absolute authority of the Word of God, by Jesus who is the only Way, the only Truth, and eternal Life, and by His Holy Spirit of truth (2 Timothy 3:16-17; John 14:6, 17, 16:13; Acts 28:25).