“And they watched him, whether he would heal him on the Sabbath day; that they might accuse him.” Mark 3:2
The spirit of accusation is probably the most prevalent spirit that bothers us, and probably the hardest to identify. We feel justified in our accusations because we see them to be true, and therefore label them as righteous indignation. So, in our own strength, we accuse.
The Pharisees accused Jesus of working on the Sabbath by healing someone. Was there truth to this? Yes. He healed someone on the Sabbath and this was against the Jewish rules and regulations, so they accused him. Were they wrong in accusing him? Years of experience with this particular passage tells us that the Pharisees were wrong and Jesus was right….of course Jesus was right. We know that they feared Jesus’ power and popularity. They also didn’t like him because he reflected their own sins back in their faces, for the entire world to see. We know this because it was written for us to know; to know their their hearts, attitudes and intentions. But it becomes much less black and white when we begin to apply this lesson in our own lives.
Consider this: There is someone at church who participates in one of the groups that you are involved in. There is a certain responsibility that each person has within this group, but there is one who does not fulfill their duties as they should, so you complain about their lack of dedication, or their failure in respect to fulfilling these duties. Is there truth to this accusation? Yes, otherwise you would not have brought it up, correct? But is it up to you to be their accuser? You may feel as though it is. Righteous indignation seeps in.
People must do their part within a group in order for it to run smoothly and perform as it was intended, this is true, but it is not our job to be the accuser. The bible tells us that Satan stands before the throne of God day and night accusing us. ACCUSING US! And there is Jesus, pleading our case, wiping clean our slates so that we can live eternally with Him in heaven.
Accusations. We all give them. Sometimes they are founded on truth and sometimes they aren’t. Sometimes it is our perception that skews our understanding, or our pride that gets in the way. Possibly anger or past hurts influence our thoughts, and therefore our hearts. But accusation belongs to Satan, not us. We do not know what is in the hearts of men and it is not for us to judge it. Satan will be judged in his time, and for all of the accusations that he leveled against us, and more.
“Do not judge, or you too will be judged.” Matthew 7:1
We are not to be accusers; of God, ourselves, or others. That job is already taken and will be done in its own time. Don’t be quick to judge. Personally, I am hoping that God gives me every opportunity to amend my ways, and not judge me too quickly; otherwise I might be a pile of ashes today. Extend mercy as God extends mercy; even to yourself.
The spirit of accusation can be a very destructive force in our lives, sometimes so unrecognizable that we don’t even know that it is within us. It can manifest in many ways in our lives, here are some of the things to look for:
Critical or judgmental –this includes of yourself
Comparison or competition
Lack of trust
Control or manipulation
Draw your line in the sand now and decide to banish this spirit. You have the power. We can all reject these spirits in Jesus name, and when we do – they have to flee! I particularly love this! When you recognize one of these things in your thoughts, you simply ask for forgiveness and tell it to leave in the name of the only Son of God, and it has to go!
Now, it is possible for it to come back and this is where action on your part is necessary. When you tell it to go, fill the space that it left in you with truth and righteousness of God’s word. Memorize a verse that will fill this space and keep the enemy at bay. Here are a few that you could start with:
“Whoever believes in him is not condemned” John 3:18
“Mercy and truth have met together; Righteousness and peace have kissed.” Psalm 85:10
“Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord: looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled;” Hebrews 12:14-15
“Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.” Matthew 5:7
Had the righteous Pharisees extended mercy and grace, things might be a bit different today…and maybe not. I pray that they made their peace with God before the end, eternal separation from God seems like a pretty horrible eternity to me. Even Jesus in His last hours, through the pain and agony of his suffering, asked the Father for forgiveness for his accusers, “for they know not what they do”.