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Do children suffer because of parents’ past sins?

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Too often things come into our lives and cause discomfort. We rehearse over and over in our minds why this is happening, or what’s going on when the Bible instructs us to not lean to our own understanding, just trust God in the situation and learn from it. The Bible warns us that in this world you will have tribulations. They come for many reasons known to God.

The Huffington Post wrote an article about Toni Braxton, citing statements from her new book “Unbreak My Heart” in which she opens up about her life, her family, and her past. One statement she shared concerning her past received a lot of attention in which she voiced that she once believed God gave her son autism because of a past abortion. In other words, she once believed her son’s condition is because of her past sin. Now she has a change of mind and has found peace about it and is able to move on with her life. In her lifetime she’s had her share of ups and downs with a lupus diagnosis, a divorce, and two bankruptcies.The write-up did not fail to mention that she had a religious upbringing. She has history with God.

Live Action News quoted Braxton as writing,

I have sometimes wondered whether God was punishing me for the abortion I had years ago by allowing my son to have autism. Or by giving me so many health issues.”

The Bible did say that in this world we will have tribulations. They may come for several reasons and yet at the end God gets the glory. Success, stardom, fame, or whatever you want to call it, does come with a price. We can’t ignore the truth that discomfort may come due to us not totally surrendering our lives to God. He don’t want half of us, he wants all of us. We can’t dip and dab and think everything is going to be hunky-dory in our lives. No one, saved or unsaved is exempt from tribulations. When we stray away from biblical truth, we open the door for Satan to come in and cause havoc in our lives. Its not so much of God putting sickness, diseases, discomfort, or chaos in our lives: we bring it on ourselves by the choices we make and sometimes our choices affect people around us. There were instances in the Bible where children did suffer because of the father’s iniquity. However, that is not everyone’s case. According to Ezekiel 18, God banned a proverb that was circulating in Jerusalem and Babylon that the children were suffering for the sins of their fathers. But, whose to say this is the case with Toni Braxton, only God, who forgives us for our sins and remember them no more.

As you can see in the book of Job, Satan does have access to the throne of God. He asked God for permission to cause havoc in Job’s life. Everything around Job got affected, even his children. It was not because of some sin or past wrongdoing of Job, but God had a plan. At the end, Job received a double blessing for his troubles.

The Bible says, Satan comes to kill, steal, and destroy. The only way he can do that is if you step outside the boundaries God put in place. I set before you good and evil, choose. He made clear the consequences for disobedience to his commands in Deuteronomy 28. When you place yourself outside of his boundaries to do with your life as you please rather than carrying out God’s plan for your life, then it is in God’s hand to deal with you as he see fit.

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights (James 1:17) So, if we take these gifts and talents and use them to the glory of the kingdom of darkness, that’s like a slap in the face to God who gave you the talent for the uplifting of his kingdom that all men may be drawn to him, not to Satan.

The Bible says, Satan is an accuser of the brethren. He is always looking for fault in the people of God so he can go back to God and find justifiable reason to do what he want to do in their lives. Most of the time what he’s accusing people of is true. And then we wonder why this and that is happening in our lives. I don’t believe God put anything on us. I do believe the same Satan who walked to and fro in the earth back in Job times is the same Satan today, whom God will give permission or will employ to rage some kind of discomfort in your life for purposes known to God.

God says, I know my thoughts I have for you.....if we go outside the boundaries there’s a penalty we must pay. As for the children suffering because of a parents’ past sins, the Bible says in Romans 14:12, “Everyone shall give an account for himself to God. Ezekiel 18:20 declares, "The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son." Remember in Ezekiel 18:3, God outlawed the proverb that the children were suffering because of parents sins. While there are cumulative effects of sin ( Exodus 20:5-6), the Lord declares in verse four that each individual is accountable for his own sin.

Read all of Examiner Journalist, Kimberly Jackson articles here!

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