Generational Curses and Ezekiel

In my circles, there’s this belief called “generational curses”. Generational curses is the belief that the weaknesses you struggle with stems from your parents, or parent’s parents. What biblical support is there for this belief in generational curses? And, what freedom do we have?


This belief comes from this passage “…visiting the iniquity of the parents upon the children and the children’s children, to the third and the fourth generation (Exodus 34:6-7).”

This morning, however, I was reading Ezekiel, the eighteenth chapter, and began reading these words that opposed the modern belief at that time of “generational curses”. In Ezekiel 18:19, it says; “Yet you say, ‘Why should not the son suffer for the iniquity of the father?’.” It was common belief that sins were carried from one generation to the next, and God would judge them for that. If a man was a thief, his children would also assume this as part of their identity. The family line would be known as thieves, whether they personally did it or not. That was just who they were. And it was accepted that God would judge this family line for a few generations because of the sins of that one man. He essentially brought ruin to his kids and grandkids. And they suffered for it.

In the next verse God says, “A child shall not suffer for the iniquity of a parent. (Ez 18:20)”. God changes the common belief of generational curses. It was challenging for the people to understand this because in this culture, as opposed to the Western world, they held a high view of the family unit. Each one’s identity was knitted to the family unit, or clan. And, also, within a high patriarchy society, meant that the father of the lineage defined the identity of the group. However, God introduced a new concept: individualism. God will no longer curse generations – the family unit and lineage, but will judge an individual based on actions of that person.

The blessings or punishment from God is now contingent on that one person’s conduct. See, God takes no pleasure in punishing a people for the actions of an individual. Rather, God desires to save the whole and condemn that one. How liberating and relieving this must have been to hear?! For the righteous sons and daughters, to know that whatever bad things their mother or father did, will no longer define their identity nor their future!

You are not cursed! Your family history does not define who you or your destiny. God has given you a fresh start!


5 thoughts on “Generational Curses and Ezekiel”

  1. Hey bro! Interesting post. I too have often wondered about just how biblical generational curses are. While I’m no expert and haven’t done an exhaustive study, experientially id say there is some validity to it.

    Off the top of my head, my definition of a generational curse is “a demonic assignment or agreement that is directed at the lineage of a person.” In the majority of cases there was some kind of witchcraft or demonic “dedications” that were made that need to be broken, but sometimes it seems it may have just been a doorway of sin that the parent was in agreement with (unrepentant).

    Of course people make their own choices, and just because there is an assignment against you doesn’t mean you are forced into it or you are paying for your parents/previous generations mistakes. You still have personal responsibility for your actions. That’s why breaking the curse/assignment doesn’t mean you won’t commit that sin anymore either. It’s just one element of spiritual warfare that needs to be considered and addressed in some situations. The enemy likes to take ground, and once he’s got a foothold in an area of your life he’ll try to use it against your family too.

    Anyways, thats my take on it.. There’s some Scripture on the topic, but not enough to form a full doctrine. When scripture doesnt make a huge deal about something I try to adopt the same approach. But we also dont want to be naive and completely write it off as non-exisent. There have definitely been a few instances where this has come up while ministering to people.


    1. Yo bro! For sure, experience is a difficult thing to challenge. For some, this is true. They can look back and say “because my parents were into, let’s say, whichcraft, therefore this explains why I always feel spiritually attacked…” And I can see that. So not trying to knock it but wonder more about the freedom, protection, and spiritual empowerment God graciously gives to believers. Are all the strongholds not broken upon conversion? Should a believer worry about what power demons might have against that person? So, the focus I’m trying to make, and I should have implied it more but, is about believing that God has broken your ties to your family’s name once you’ve entered the Kingdom – a new and redeemed family. Thanks for your input. 🙂


      1. Yeah I understood your main thought, and it’s a good one!

        Just trying to explain what I believe is meant by “generational curses,” which I think is often misunderstood and misrepresented.

        It would be nice if all strongholds were broken at conversion. But it just isn’t the case. When somebody says a prayer “Jesus I give you my life” but they still have some agreement with sin, then there’s still some work to be done with the help of the Holy Spirit. To put it in theological terms: Regeneration happens in an instant, but sanctification is a process. Most of us have more strongholds than we’d like to admit.

        Easy example: I break traffic laws all the time and usually experience ZERO conviction (seared conscience) and dont repent for it. However, biblically I know I’m in the wrong. Though it might be considered a small thing, the fact that I’m in agreement with it could mean it’s a stronghold of rebellion in my life. Am I saved? Yes! Do I need to be set free… probably! 🙂


      2. Haha, yes. Now that I understand. We all have weaknesses, and that’s where the Spirit comes in. Where I am weak, he is strong. And it convicts as well, unless your conscious is seared ;).

        Now about generational curses, the foundational verse in Exodus was actually a curse placed on the generations from God, not from the fathers on their children. It wasn’t a demonic stronghold passed down. As the giver of the judgement placed, God is the only to take it away. Which in Ezekiel he removed it. If this is the case, we’ve misapplied that text.

        Does that mean we aren’t influenced by our parents to rebel in certain ways? Of course not. And I think this is where teaching and accountability and the empowerment of the Spirit comes in. Agreements are different than bondages. A spirit filled person cannot be demon possessed at the same time. But it’s up to that person to repent from their agreements with certain sinful actions. It’s learning to walk in new ways as opposed to how they were taught by their parents. Their identity is being transformed into the character of Christ.

        So, I hope you break that rebellious way of speeding. Lol


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