Oklahoma megachurch Pastor Michael Todd warned his congregation in Tulsa's Transformation Church about continuing to live in the cuff of "spirit of condemnation," saying that Jesus Christ freed the people who put their faith in Him.
In the "Cuffed To Condemnation" sermon, which is the fifth part of the "Cuffing Season" series in his church, Todd shared that he had once been a captive of the spirit of condemnation. He explored other romantic relationships aside from his relationship with his current wife Natalie when they were about to graduate from high school.
The pastor explained that he started to listen to the culture and broke his girlfriend's heart. After the separation, they both entered other relationships wherein they both lost their virginity. "We [went] through all of these cycles," he said.
Todd admitted that even though they went back together, they both struggled with trust issues. He allowed the spirit of condemnation to dissuade him from continuing his relationship with his wife. He described himself as being stuck under the cloud of condemnation because he blamed himself for everything that happened.
Freed Through Jesus Christ
Todd recalled being hard at himself, but now, the pastor affirmed he was free from condemnation through Jesus Christ.
He urged congregants to attain the freedom that Jesus gives. He warned that the enemy would try to identify them with their sins, but he cited John 3:17 which says "God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him."
Then the pastor declared his congregants' freedom from condemnation through God's words as he realized that many children of God lived a condemned life. He encouraged them to focus on their new identity in Christ and not on the past sins they committed.
Todd emphasized that people coming to Christ had the chance to change themselves for the better. He admitted that he was once a cheater, but when he surrendered his life to Christ, he was not defined by his sins anymore. He said, "I cheated, but in Christ, I am not a cheater."
Reality Of Sins Among Christians
The pastor explained that even coming to Christ, people might still struggle with sins and would still encounter temptations. However, he said that it was the nature of the man and not his identity. Thus, one must watch out for the cycle of condemnation that leads people back to sinning.
He reiterated that many Christians fall back to the sinning cycle, thinking that they could not change anymore. He warned how the spirit of condemnation viciously robbed the freedom of many Christians, hindering them from living fully in Christ. Many Christians believed that "God is not a punisher. He doesn't punish, he disciplines," explaining that "condemnation is an eternal sentence to punishment."
Todd also reiterated that he was not giving anyone permission to sin, but addressed how the enemy trapped Christians in the cycle of condemnation that brings them back to sin. Magnifying the grace that God freely gave His people, and living a life in total surrender would let Christians be freed from condemnation.