No one should be held captive to condemnation and especially emotional condemnation. A friend recently shared how the enemy loves to mess with our emotions as he did with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, calling their identity into question. Why? Because it is God’s first move in giving us His identity and the enemy’s first move to call our identity into question. Therefore, If he can get you to doubt your identity through condemnation, guilt, or shame, he’ll easily lead you down the road to contrary declarations, emotional upheaval, and condemnation. We’ve shifted our focus when we follow him down that road.
Granted, we are emotional people. You watch a ‘feel-good’ movie and your emotions are tweaked. You’ll probably wipe a tear or two from your eye because you identified with something portrayed in the movie. But if you only live by your emotions, you’re being one-dimensional. You are more than your emotions.
As we’ve mentioned, emotions come from our thoughts. When our thoughts aren’t centered and grounded in who we are as believers, we give more room for our fickle emotions to yell at us. Notice that we’re calling emotions fickle because many times they are. That isn’t to say when something sad happens it’s wrong to cry. It’s when we stay with the emotions we ‘feel’ and let them lead us. Then it’s easy to slide down the road, and if we’re not careful, we’ll let our emotions dictate further thoughts and actions. This is where Paul’s wisdom comes in. 2 Corinthians 10:5 NASB says “We are destroying speculations and every lofty things raised up against the knowledge of God [any condemnation], and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.”
Many people and a lot of believers don’t fully understand that giving in to your emotions is a choice. It’s a choice you make each time you face thoughts that want to yank your emotions all over the place. So, what will you choose? What will you do?
TRUTH: Everything that comes against what Jesus accomplished for you should not be entertained (thought about, meditated on) but cast aside, out of your thinking. You know the truth of who you are—God’s beloved child—forever redeemed. Furthermore, don’t allow your thoughts and emotions to agree with the lies of the enemy.
My dearest friend Betty shares that the enemy is always perched, waiting on our words that don’t agree with God’s Word. Did you catch that? When we give voice to empty, emotional words, especially words or thoughts that have no scriptural basis, we’re unwittingly throwing bate out to the enemy. Remember that your words have power. They bring life or death. Why is it dangerous to voice non-scriptural, condemning words? Because the enemy will take what you’ve said, throw it back to you as your thoughts along with more condemning declarative accusations all the while urging you to agree with him. Don’t listen to him or agree with him. Let your words be in agreement with God’s Word.
This is why it is important and necessary to harness your emotions. Reign them in so they don’t run amuck. Anytime emotions take over, you’re susceptible to thinking differently than normal, especially when the emotions are against the power of God within you.
Emotions are by their very nature, emotional. Herein is the rub. They’ll be UP one day and DOWN the next. They’re fickle. They’ll praise you, and then turn around and condemn you. They change. Don’t rely solely on your emotions. Again, it’s your choice. Each time you choose to renew your mind in God’s truth and in His love for you, you’ll be able to more quickly reject thoughts of condemnation, shame, and guilt.
Declare as David did in Psalm 23:3 ESV, “He restores my soul.” David knew in part God’s renewal, although he only had the Old Testament. You are blessed to know the fulfilled renewal available through the finished work of Jesus (New Testament).
Let God’s Word restore and renew you, body, soul, and spirit. Choose to follow and keep the truth of God’s declaration of you strong and firm. Anchor your thoughts and words in the Word because the Word is your arsenal, and its power is stronger than any thoughts or words of condemnation. You are more than a conqueror through Christ.
Understand overcoming condemnation, especially condemnation that has attacked your emotions, is a process. The more you operate in the truth of the Word, the more you’ll gain victory over emotional upheavals. It will take practice. That’s why it’s important to be grounded in the Word of your deliverance and speak it into your life.
APPLICATION: You will walk in greater freedom and liberty, far from condemnation of any kind, each time you anchor your thoughts and words in the Word. That’s why we emphasize the scriptures in each of these lessons. We want you to get into the Word and get the Word into you. We want you to walk in victory and power, far from condemnation, accusations, guilt, or shame because you’ve already been removed from it through Jesus. Keep your focus on Him. Let His Love remove any doubt about the subject.
He came to set captives free. He came to set you free. In Luke’s account (4:16-22 NASB) Jesus entered the synagogue, took the scroll, and read these words from Isaiah, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He anointed me to preach the Gospel to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to set free those who are oppressed” (Luke 4:18). When He finished reading, verse 20, Jesus stated this profound truth (verse 21), “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.”
Jesus has set you free—free and released from any/all emotional condemnation. Paul encourages you “to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:24 ESV).
Now, today, you can walk and live in this truth.
Ephesians 4:24, ESV – “and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.”
Make It Personal: I am a new person in Christ, and I have the likeness of God working His righteousness and holiness in me.
2 Corinthians 10:5 NASB – “We are destroying speculations and every lofty things raised up against the knowledge of God [any condemnation], and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.”
Make It Personal: I will pull down every speculative thoughts, every thoughts that doesn’t line up with what Jesus did for me, and bring those thoughts captive to Him because I’m not keeping them in my mind.
Psalm 23:3 ESV, “He restores my soul.”
Make It Personal: Jesus restores and rebuilds my soul—my will, my mind, and my emotions. My emotions are not frayed and broken because He is totally restoring me.
Luke 4:18, 22, NASB – “18The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He anointed me to preach the Gospel to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to set free those who are oppressed…22Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.”
Make It Personal: Jesus has proclaimed release and freedom to me from condemnation, oppression, accusations, guilt, and shame and I receive it because He did it for me. I’m free in Him.
How are you countering thoughts that attack your emotions?
In what ways are you changing empty and potentially emotional words to God’s words?
How is Jesus renewing your soul—will, mind, emotions?
What emotional freedom have you experienced this week?