DONíT LOOK BACK
I want to stress to you that I myself, have made many mistakes in this area almost more than any other area in Godís Word. Iíve worked it, experienced it, and paid the consequences because it seemed to take me forever to just simply listen to God and not argue with Him. I must say that this type of teaching often reminds me of how it baffles me as to why they never teach human relations courses in college Ė how to get along with your fellow workers Ė one of the most important aspects of any job. Am I right? Letís get to the Word.
I urge you to read Genesis Chapter 19 before continuing. Lot was threatened by a crowd of homosexuals Ė thatís right. They wanted to "know" him. That means they wanted to have deviate sexual intercourse with him. What this group did not know was that God had sent two angels to Sodom at evening (v. 1). But the angels protected Lot and allowed the men pounding at the door to go blind (v. 11). These homosexuals brought it upon themselves. God brings no evil upon anyone Ė HE ALLOWS IT TO HAPPEN. How? He allows the devil and his devil spirits to inflict harm upon people who, by their own free will, choose to disobey God. Letís now go to verse 12:
And the men [angels] said unto Lot, Hast thou here any besides? son in law, and thy sons, and thy daughters, and whatsoever thou hast in the city, bring them† out of this place: -- Genesis 19: 12
"Listen Lot, this place is going to be history soon! Did you get everyone out of this city?" The angels of the true God were trying to help Lot by warning him of what was about to take place.
For we will destroy this place [allow it to be destroyed], because the cry of them is waxen great before the face of the Lord; and the Lord hath sent us to destroy it. Ė Genesis 19: 13
God sent those angels and they werenít messing around Ė they had a job to do and when God does a job, He does it right. He doesnít miss even the most minute detail.
Then the Lord rained upon Sodom and Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven; -- Genesis 19: 24
And he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground. Ė Genesis 19: 25
What did God do? He wiped out both cities Ė the plain Ė the inhabitants Ė the plants Ė EVERYTHING! Do you think He missed anyoneÖÖÖÖÖ or anything? God does a job right. So much for the twin sin cities.
But here now is the whole point of this record. First, we need to back up several verses to verse 17. Now note what the angels told Lot, his wife, and his two daughters. DONíT FORGET THIS RECORD. This record sets the stage for this teaching and by remembering it, it will greatly help you to master this very important principle in Godís Word.
And it came to pass, when they had brought them forth abroad, that he [the angel] said, Escape for thy life; look not behind thee, neither stay thou in all the plain; escape to the mountain, lest thou be consumed. Ė Genesis 19: 17
Now watch this. Revelation is always accurate to the necessary detail. Look what is in this verse. "Escape for thy life" . . . . . . . . "LOOK NOT BEHIND THEE" . . . . . . . . "escape to the mountain" . . . . . . . and the consequences if you do not adhere to the revelation that is from the true God . . . . . . . . "lest thou be consumed". Never do more or less than Godís revelation. This will do more harm than good. Do what God tells you to and stop. Remember, Iím teaching you keys to the more than abundant life.
The angels were relaying Godís detailed instructions to Lot and his family as to how to survive what was about to take place in verse 24 Ė the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. What should stand out to you in verse 17 that relates directly to this teaching?
The angels instructed them to "look not behind thee". Well, you may think; ĎWhatís the big deal if I turn around and look back?í The big deal is God said donít do it. Either you listen to God or you donít. If you donít genuinely want to listen to every Word that the true God speaks, then this teaching and this web site is not for you. This web site is designed to build leaders that will carry on Godís rightly divided Word for all their days. Next verse: remember it forever.
But his [Lotís] wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt. Ė Genesis 19: 26
Lotís wife was walking behind him and by her own free will, turned around and looked back at the destruction that was taking place. She outright disobeyed Godís instructions. She died. We all have an old man and temptations that make us want to bring back the past without realizing that this is not Godís Will for us. Especially when we try to return to something that in the past ended in a disaster. Sound familiar? I can and will give you some examples from my own life. But first we must go and see what God says about the past.
Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this† one thing I do,† forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, Ė Philippians 3: 13
God wants us to forget the past since there is no profit in it at all. Some people constantly dwell on the past Ė they live in it. Itís a form of devil spirit possession. It destroys people. This spiritual attack on people reaches itís fullest manifestation when we actually make an attempt to return to something we once did where we were a miserable failure. Iíve done it. Possibly, I use the term Ďpossessioní too loosely. A person who is manipulated by something spiritual can be said to be controlled or possessed. No one is ever completely possessed Ė it is temporary. When the spirit, who is always a parasite, gets what it needs, it moves on. God wants us to reach forth unto what is in the present. We are not to live in the past or worry about the future. This record concerning Lot and his wife is one of the best representations of the purpose of this teaching from Godís Word.
Letís now take a look at what God once again thinks about the past. This example concerns sin itself.
And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. Ė Hebrews 10: 17
When we break fellowship and sin and confess that sin to God, He forgives us. But look very closely at what the verse says. I REMEMBER NO MORE. When God forgives He forgets. So if a sin from the past comes up in your mind, it canít be coming from the true God and Father of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Then it must be coming from another source and that source is the god of this world.
When you desire to return and look back to something you once failed at, that thought is coming from hell. You need to remember that or you will be defeated in many areas of your life. Looking back is one of the most subtle tricks the adversary uses and with great success. Perhaps itís time to give you some real examples from my own life.
I did great in a job at a State Hospital for the mentally challenged for a certain amount of time. But then I experienced many problems with the staff who could care less about the patients. At one point I lost interest, Ďdoors closedí and God wanted me to leave. I left. For about 10 years or more, the thought of returning bothered me. I tried reinstatement, took the exam all over again and spent many long hours working with human relations. I had an interview and practically was rehired. They decided to actually shut down this large hospital at the about the time I was about to return. All that time, energy, and effort seemed WASTED except for the fact that I could teach this example now to you. If you keep God first, He will cover for your mistakes. However, if we keep making the same mistake over and over again, we are going to have consequences. Donít look back. It was never Godís Will for me to go back Ė it was my will.
I graduated college with honors, but much later became dissatisfied. I wanted to go back. During my last two years at school, I experienced very many difficulties at a certain campus away from home. People were like Ďiceí compared to my home campus and area. I later enrolled in graduate school at the same campus. I had a very problematic instructor right from the start. To make this short, I withdrew after one semester. It was Godís Will for me to finish my 4-year degree, but it was not His Will for me to ever return again Ė it was my will. The time, work, and money I spent seemed wasted Ė except that maybe you can learn from my experience and therefore profit from it. Donít look back.
This is a difficult renewed mind principle to master. You have to work at it. Remember what the Word of God says you can do.
I can all things through Christ which [who] strengtheneth me. Ė Philippians 4: 13
Literal: I am ready for everything and equal to anything through him who infuses inner strength into me.
You can do everything and anything according to the Word of God. God says "Donít look back" and you can do it. God never brings up the past to us so why should we bring it up? I can go on with my examples for a long time. So letís get back to the Word of God and take a look at someone who did a marvelous job not dwelling on the past. He could not afford to. Why?
The Apostle Paul received the greatest revelation from God than any man in that time period. Youíve got to be on talking terms with the Father to have that type of relationship. Paul received the revelation of the great mystery.
To whom God would make known what is† the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: -- Colossians 1: 27
Before Paul was converted, we all know what Paul did. How in the world did he become such a great man of God and not continually condemn himself by thinking on the past and looking back at his old man? He applied the Word of God Ė that is the only thing that defeats the adversary. I could say that a billion times. It only works if you believe it. Hereís one dynamic principle Paul applied.
I thank my God, I speak with tongues more than ye all: -- I Corinthians 14: 18
He operated this manifestation of the spirit more than any other man. There are 12 documented benefits to speaking in tongues in your private prayer life [see The Benefits And Purpose Of True Worship]. Itís Godís Will that you speak in tongues as much as possible. You want to argue with Him, go ahead. When I speak in tongues, nothing Ė I mean nothing gets to me Ė nothing bothers me Ė nothing defeats me. Paul became spiritually strong by praying in the spirit as much as possible.
If Paul looked back, he couldnít live with himself, let alone accomplish what he did for God. Paul mastered the art of not looking back Ė not thinking about or dwelling on the past. Thatís how he was able to do so much for the true God.
I do not want to repeat myself or extend this teaching farther than it is necessary for it to be effective. I honestly believe the point has been made. I only care that just one person adheres to what is written in this teaching. That person will get blessed and not be defeated any longer. Thatís what the Word of God will do for any man or woman who dares to believe and apply His perfect Word. You need to understand that you are in a spiritual battle all of the time.
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: -- I Peter 5: 8
The enemy utilizes fear and persecution to trick Christians into making serious mistakes and errors in judgement. You need some help Ė you need to live by Godís blueprint and then you will see the true God accomplish the following for you.
And the God of peace shall bruise [crush] Satan under your feet shortly [quickly]. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be† with you. Amen.
-- Romans 16: 20