The ingredients of any good horror movie are always these; a sordid past which turns into a deep secret and a vengeful spirit hell-bent on seeking retribution for it. Good lighting, great soundtrack and good–looking leads notwithstanding, of course. And the reason why they work so well is because we all believe that if we do something wrong, the powers that be, the world at large, our parents, even God will be out to get us. Indeed, even amongst those who do not believe in Jesus, they believe in this,

“For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me,” Exodus 20:5

That is why, for some of us, our lives are perpetual horror movies. Because for us, we all have some measure of a sordid past, things we are not proud of, things we rather keep in the attic, or some dark corner of our closet; and we all think that because of that, we have a big debt of retribution that is due us. So we live in constant fear of not merely reprisal from man, but vengeance from God, visited upon us to the third and fourth generation.

And our fear was not without ground, for you see,

“If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” 1 John 1:8

“If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.” 1 John 1:10

“for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” Romans 3:23

“No one is good but One, that is, God.” Mark 10:18

“As it is written:
“There is none righteous, no, not one;
There is none who understands;
There is none who seeks after God.
They have all turned aside;
They have together become unprofitable;
There is none who does good, no, not one.”
“Their throat is an open tomb;
With their tongues they have practiced deceit”;
“The poison of asps is under their lips”;
“Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness.”
“Their feet are swift to shed blood;
Destruction and misery are in their ways;
And the way of peace they have not known.”
“There is no fear of God before their eyes.” Romans 3: 10-18

So beloved, Jesus wants you to know that for once, most of what you said is true. Yes, you do have some measure of a sordid past. And yes, your past is actually worse than what you think it is, because of all those things that you did, and the things you did not even realize you did, and those which you were ignorant of the implications. And yes, there is a vengeful spirit out to get you; or at least there would have been… if not for Him.

To understand how and why that is, we need to go back to Exodus 20. Do you notice that verse 5 ends with a comma? So what is the second half of that sentence?

“For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.” Exodus 20:5-6

Now you might think, well put like that, anyone can get people to love them and keep their commandments out of fear, right? Well, our Father is not like that. Sure, He could have left us be. But He is merciful, and He did not like this contract that man had drawn up with Him where man was blessed only when man did well. He did not want to deal with man on these terms;

“Then all the people answered together and said, “All that the Lord has spoken we will do.” Exodus 19:8

“All the people spoke at the same time and said, “We will obey everything the Lord says.” Exodus 19:8[GW]

Because when He does, this was the result.

“‘If you walk in My statutes and keep My commandments, and perform them, then I will give you rain in its season, the land shall yield its produce, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit.” Leviticus 26:3-4

“‘But if you do not obey Me, and do not observe all these commandments, and if you despise My statutes, or if your soul abhors My judgments, so that you do not perform all My commandments, but break My covenant, I also will do this to you: I will even appoint terror over you, wasting disease and fever which shall consume the eyes and cause sorrow of heart. And you shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it.” Leviticus 26:14-16

Instead, this was the reason our Father created us.

“Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” Genesis 1:26

We were not created for sport. We were not created to do God’s bidding. We were created to enjoy all the good that our Father created. So that is why Jesus came to change that situation, as He said,

“Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.” Matthew 26:27-28

It must have been that our Father did not like the old; that is why Jesus brought the new. So what was this new covenant?

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” John 3:16-17

“But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” John 1:12-13

And what are the benefits of sonship with our Father?

“Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these will he do, because I go to My Father. And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.” John 14:12-14

So, in one fell swoop, Jesus removes the two ingredients of the perfect horror movie; He takes upon Himself all our sordid deeds which we are not proud of, and gives us His righteousness, effectively making us now sinless and perfect in the sight of our Father for it is said,

“Surely He has borne our griefs (sicknesses, weaknesses, and distresses) and carried our sorrows and pains [of punishment], yet we [ignorantly] considered Him stricken, smitten, and afflicted by God [as if with leprosy].
But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our guilt and iniquities; the chastisement [needful to obtain] peace and well-being for us was upon Him, and with the stripes [that wounded] Him we are healed and made whole.” Isaiah 53:4-5 [AMPC]

“For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” 2 Corinthians 5:21

And He takes away our Father’s reason for coming at us with all Holy vengeance to smite us because,

“There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.” Romans 8:1

Now, there is no more fear, because there is no more punishment. So for us who believe, our lives can no longer be horror blockbusters. What a letdown!

Jokes aside, we need to understand this, beloved,

“God is love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us. This way, love has the run of the house, becomes at home and mature in us, so that we’re free of worry on Judgment Day—our standing in the world is identical with Christ’s. There is no room in love for fear. Well-formed love banishes fear. Since fear is crippling, a fearful life—fear of death, fear of judgment—is one not yet fully formed in love.” 1 John 4:17-18 [MSG]

Beloved, for us who believed and have answered this call of Jesus,

“Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.” Revelation 3:20

He is in us, Love dwells in us. And where love is, fear cannot be, for remember,

“There is no fear in love [dread does not exist], but full-grown (complete, perfect) love turns fear out of doors and expels every trace of terror! For fear brings with it the thought of punishment, and he who is afraid has not reached the full maturity of love [is not yet grown into love’s complete perfection].” 1 John 4:18 [AMPC]

And if you think that you not only have a sordid past, but also a sordid present, beloved, for you who believe, take comfort that,

“We know [absolutely] that anyone born of God does not [deliberately and knowingly] practice committing sin, but the One Who was begotten of God carefully watches over and protects him [Christ’s divine presence within him preserves him against the evil], and the wicked one does not lay hold (get a grip) on him or touch [him].
We know [positively] that we are of God, and the whole world [around us] is under the power of the evil one.” 1 John 5:18 [AMPC]

So let Jesus, the beloved and begotten Son of God our Father watch over you and protect you. Let His divine presence within you preserve you against evil. For when Jesus is in your heart, sin cannot step in and lay hold of you. Jesus has already made it impossible for your life to be a horror movie. So trust that He will, little by little, as you are able, transform you from the inside out into that which He had originally made you to be. Remember beloved,

“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10

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