"What an idiot!—How could you do that!"
"How could God let this happen?"
"I can't believe I did it again—I'm such a failure."
Have you ever had thoughts like those? I have.
accusing, critical, judgmental, condemning thoughts
Thoughts like that are actually planted in our minds by our Adversary—the Accuser.
That's right. We have an invisible adversary. Satan was originally an angel called Lucifer, meaning "morning star" or "light-bringing." When he rebelled, God renamed him "Satan."
Satan means "accuser" or "adversary"
That's who he is. The Accuser.
"And I hard a loud voice saying in here, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night." Revelation 12:10
And he doesn't work alone. He has a army to help him. God's word tells us that when Satan rebelled, 1/3 of the angels followed him. Their whole goal is to oppose God in every way. To contradict truth - to lie, to steal, to destroy. And they do it by whispering thoughts to us. Our minds are the battlefield between good and evil.
Satan and his accusing spirits can whisper to us in the first person, making it sound like it's our own thought. It's up to us to discern and refuse the thought. If we do not cast it down, we agree with it and take it as our own. That's when it becomes sin. [Read more - Who told you that?]
Accusing spirits join forces with other spirits like Judgementalism, Criticism, Guilt, Shame, Confusion, Slander, Gossip, Innuendo, Lying, Victimization, Suspicion, Taking Offense, Bitterness, Mistrust, or Fear.
Personally, I was clear when I had an accusatory thought toward God or toward other people. But I was shocked to realize that I was also allowing all kinds of self-accusing and self-condemning thoughts to run rampant in my mind! In fact, I've realized that the talk in my own mind is much more harsh and judgmental than I would ever speak to another person or to my God!
Accusing spirits work with other spirits to tempt us. They build us up and get us to do something wrong, and then they tear us down and beat us up for doing it! A double whammy! The good news is that once we confess our sin and turn away from it, "There is therefore no no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus - for those who walk not after the flesh but after the spirit." Romans 8:1
Accusing spirits are relentless.They often use truth as a weapon; they mix truth with error.
Truth must always come together with mercy.
"Mercy and Truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed." Psalm 85:10
Have you noticed that judgement, criticism, and finger-pointing is running rampant in our world today? It's crazy!
Did you know that people "setting themselves against each other" is actually a characteristic of the end times?
In Matthew 24 Jesus said, "For nation shall rise up against nation, and kingdom against kingdom and there shall be famines and pestilences, and earthquakes in diverse places. . . . and then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another."
So what should we do?
Here are a few simple [but not so easy] things you can do:
Catch Accusation while it's still a thought. Don't let it convince you to nurse a feeling or grow into words or actions. You will end up with a result you won't like! [Read more—Thinking About Thinking]
If you realize you've been agreeing with accusation toward God, others, or yourself, repent and ask forgiveness. Receive God's unmerited favor (grace) and forgiveness through Jesus. Speak Romans 8:1 out loud when the enemy comes back to accuse you, and then reject the thought. "There is therefore no no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus - for those who walk not after the flesh but after the spirit."
If you would normally point out someone's faults you can look for something good in them, or help restore them instead.
Refuse to allow judgement to separate you from others. If someone wants to talk to you about another person, don't listen! And do not take up another person's offense! It's between the two of them—don't make yourself part of the equation.
Choose ahead of time to operate in forgiveness. Before someone actually accuses or offends you, decide that your response will be forgiveness. Learn to "separate the offense from the offender" in the same way that God "separates the sin from the sinner."
If you have already allowed bitterness into your heart, cast it down and choose forgiveness. Let it go.
Forgiveness is not a feeling. It's a choice. [Did you know that people actually subject themselves to physical disease when they allow bitterness to rule in their hearts? Don't let that happen to you!]
Put on your Ephesians 6 armor and stand in the gap for our nation!