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Questions & Answers

Cursing the Canaanites

First posted: August 30, 2005



You wrote in your article "The roots of smoking" that the Canaanite spirit must be cursed in order to be defeated ... How would you exactly speak out the curse ... in order to overcome the root of smoking?



Active abhorrence

The pronouncement of judgment curses on Canaanite spirits begins, in essence, with an attitude of the heart. To curse something means that you are condemning it unto destruction, which implies a strong abhorrence of that which you are cursing. This abhorrence goes beyond a mere desire to keep the object "at a distance". It implies a proactive effort to see the object destroyed.

For example, if you are living in a house that has been invaded by cockroaches, the "cursing" of the cockroaches goes beyond a passive desire to have the cockroaches leave the house and go somewhere else, and it goes beyond a mere sense of "sadness" every time you see one crawling around. To "curse" the cockroaches means to abhor their very existence, and that abhorrence will drive you to relentlessly go after any cockroach you see in order to squash it with your foot or to spray roach-killer on it.

The sense of "abhorrence" required in order to effectively curse the Canaanite spirit comes out of a zeal for righteousness, and this zeal is derived from a deep awareness of what God thinks about unrighteousness. When we are struggling with a certain sin area in our lives, it is important to go to God in prayer and say something like the following:

"Lord, I have a mental awareness that this is wrong, but I don't have a strong feeling against it. Please show me WHY you hate this sin so much, and help me to develop the same hatred against that sin that You have."


After the Israelites cursed the Canaanites in Numbers 21:2, they went out to destroy the Canaanites (Numbers 21:3). This again speaks of proactive and unrelenting behavior born out of deep abhorrence.


Chewing the cud

The development of the "deep awareness" mentioned above requires spending time in prayer and meditating on the nature of the sin itself. In the book of Leviticus, the Lord instructed the children of Israel about the animals they could eat:


"1And the LORD spake unto Moses and to Aaron, saying unto them, 2Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, These are the beasts which ye shall eat among all the beasts that are on the earth. 3Whatsoever parteth the hoof, and is clovenfooted, and cheweth the cud, among the beasts, that shall ye eat." (Leviticus 11:1-3)

Even though this law no longer has a literal application, its spiritual application still stands. In Scripture, to "eat" something means to "adopt" or "absorb" the nature of that something. Therefore, to spiritually "eat pork", for example, means to adopt the nature and behavior of a "spiritual pig", which, as we have said before, means behaving like a Girgashite.

In the passage above, the Lord told the Israelites to eat animals that "chewed the cud", which speaks of ruminating animals that chew down food and bring it back from their first stomach in order to chew on it again. This is a figure of "persistent and repetitive meditation" where one goes over something again and again until it is fully digested.


When we don't truly abhor a sin, we must prayerfully search in Scripture until we develop an understanding of how God sees that sin. Once we begin to see the sin as He does, we will hate it as much as He hates it. When this happens, we will abhor the sin's very presence, and we will actively work to see it destroyed. Every time we see that sin in our lives, we will abhor it, and we will say something simple like "I curse this sin and I curse the roots of this sin in my heart". Through the constant, deliberate, and repetitive declaration of this curse, the roots of the sin in our heart are destroyed and our abhorrence of the sin is strengthened. The practice of the sin will begin to leave a very bitter taste in our mouths. We will lose interest in that sin, and we will not only long to see it destroyed in our own lives but also in the lives of others.


In order to get a greater sense of what it means to declare a "judgment curse", you may want to reread Numbers 21:1-3, where the Israelites cursed the Canaanites. The curse does not have to be an elaborate prayer. The key is an attitude of the heart where we actively abhor the sin and where we long to see it irrevocably destroyed. This is what God did with Sodom and Gomorrah. He abhorred those cities and condemned them unto destruction.


Promoters cursed

As we said above, as we grow in our abhorrence of a sin, we will long to see it destroyed, not only in our own lives, but in the lives of others. This means that you will proactively attack the promoters of the sin in others.


"28And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; 29Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, 30Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: 32Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them." (Romans 1:32)


Through judgment prayer, you will unleash God's wrath against the promoters of unrighteousness, and you will become a red-horse rider, a "pestilence" against all unrighteousness and iniquity on Earth.

"17For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith. 18For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness" (Romans 1:17-18)

[Notice how faith reveals the righteousness of God (v17). As we "live by faith" (v17), God's righteousness is revealed, which leads to the revelation of God's wrath from Heaven through us, and His wrath comes against those who hold back the truth in unrighteousness (v18). The word "hold" in verse 18 is a mistranslation of the Greek word katecho, which literally means "to hold back", as when someone is preventing someone else from running freely.]


The pride element

As we share in the "roots of smoking" word, smoking is strongly related to Amorite pride. The word for "smoke" that appears in the New Testament is the Greek word typho, which is related to the word typhoo that literally means "to raise a smoke" but is used by the Holy Spirit in the New Testament to refer to "pride". In other words, the Lord sees a strong element of pride in the act of smoking. Therefore, someone who is struggling with smoking must go to the Lord in prayer and ask Him to reveal that "element of pride" to him or her, and, as He reveals it, he or she will grow to abhor the act of smoking because smoking will "reek of pride".


The Law of the Spirit of Life

Many believers sincerely want to quit smoking or other addictions, but their bodies are tied to those addictions. That is what the Lord calls "the law of sin":


"20Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. 21I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. 22For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: 23But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members." (Romans 7:20-23)


Therefore, He does not condemn a repentant believer when he or she feels a desire for his or her addiction. Why? Because He never condemns a person who sincerely wants to change:


"There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit." (Romans 8:1)

[To be "in Christ Jesus" means to be connected with the "inner man" (Romans 7:22) that God has endowed us with (Colossians 3:10, Ephesians 4:24). This inner man is made in the image of Christ Jesus. When you choose not to walk "after the flesh" but "after the Spirit", you become connected to the inner man.


We are to live by faith (2 Corinthians 5:7). This means that to be "in Christ Jesus" requires faith, not human effort. When we choose to "walk after the Spirit", the fruits of the Spirit will inevitably follow. Many believe that they must produce the fruits of the Spirit first in order to "walk after the Spirit". The fruits are the effect, not the cause.]


How do we change, then? By exposing ourselves to the "law of the Spirit of life":


"For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death." (Romans 8:2)


According to John 6:63, the words of the Lord are "spirit and life", meaning that the "law of the Spirit of life" is activated in our lives as we hear His personal words. As we do, we become aware of what He likes and what He doesn't like; we become aware of what He abhors and what He doesn't abhor. We get an impartation of His likes and dislikes, and we begin to think and feel the way He thinks and feels. If you have an area you are dealing with, ask the Lord to speak to your heart about that area. Ask Him to reveal to you what He thinks and feels about it. This is related to what we share on "chewing the cud" above.


As we have said before, whenever you repent of a sin, you are "baptized in water", which cleanses you on the outside. You must then proceed to the "baptism of fire", which processes you on the inside. As you approach and expose yourself to God's Consuming Fire, God's judgments will work on your life and destroy the roots of the sin inside of you. As those roots are destroyed, He will fill you with His life-giving rhema word, and the "law of the Spirit of life" will be activated in you. It is through a process of death and resurrection that we are transformed from glory to glory (Revelation 1:16-17, 2 Corinthians 3:18).


"10And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you." (Romans 8:10-11)


When we expose ourselves to the "law of the Spirit of life", our motivation for not sinning will not be so that we may abide by an impersonal book of "moral" laws and regulations. Our motivation will be the Person (i.e.- God) who is pronouncing the law over our lives. When we love someone, it is easier to obey that person's instructions.



One of the issues related to the breaking of addictions is steady application of the Lord's word. We must have "apostolic endurance" and expose ourselves to God's judgments constantly. We must learn to accept and to even long for His judgments over our lives. As we do so, we will allow the Lord to purify us and to manifest His Glory through us.


As we have said before, the Canaanite spirit leads to a low pain threshold that runs away from "judgment pain". We must be willing to become like spiritual camels who can endure the duress of the desert. That is the only way that God can form "pearls" inside of us. Pearls are not formed overnight.


Truth unto freedom

When we ask for judgments over our lives, the Lord will bring circumstances upon us that will expose things that are hidden in the spirit realm. Things that we were unaware of will become evident to us. We shall know the truth, and the truth shall set us free (John 8:32). To know the truth, however, implies being exposed to God's death-causing judgments. Why? Because truth and judgments are inextricably intertwined (Psalm 96:13, Jeremiah 4:2, Romans 2:2). It is impossible to know the truth without "dying" first. After you are "dead", God will "resurrect" you, and your new, "resurrected" self will be free from the limitations of earthliness. Many who have had "near-death experiences" know that, as they die, their souls are freed from the limitations of their earthly bodies and are free to travel to and fro. To know the truth means to die, which then leads to resurrection freedom. This is what the Lord meant by, "Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free".