Are Christians Allowed to Curse Their Enemies?

We just recently received an email from one of our readers. The question she had asked us was whether or not we as Christians could curse someone else for something wrong they were doing to us. The reason she was asking this question was due to something she heard her own pastor do in one of his services.

Long story short, they had some problems with several women in their church. These women then left the church and started to bad-mouth the pastor and his church to others on the outside.

Then at one of their Sunday services the pastor commented on what was occurring with these women, and then made the comment “to let everything they were saying come back on their head 100 times and everything be returned back upon them. “

Our reader was not comfortable with this kind of statement her pastor was making, and she then wrote in asking if this was a form of cursing and if so, whether or not he should be doing something like this. We wrote her back and told her we did feel this was a form of cursing and that he should not be doing something like this.

I have also heard some very well-known TV preachers over the years do something similar and again, I was never comfortable with this kind of rhetoric, as I felt they were crossing a line into actually cursing those who were trying to do them wrong.

As you will see in the Scripture verses I will give you in this article, I believe Jesus is asking all of us to live and operate at a higher level and standard now that He has already died on the cross for all of our sins and trespasses..

Back in the OT, there were several instances of His people cursing their enemies. The prophet Jeremiah had several times asked God to bring doom and destruction upon those who were coming after Israel.

However, when you look at the specific wording in the verses I will now give you, I do not believe the Lord wants us to engage in this kind of activity. In these specific verses, Jesus is telling us to love our enemies, along with blessing them and praying for them.

He is not telling us to ask God to bring down any kind of death, doom, and destruction on those who are trying to hurt us.

As we have shown you in our article titled, “Battle Verses of the Bible,” God does have a war side to His personality and He will not hesitate to go into battle to protect you and your loved ones if you need Him to do it for you – but let God decide how He will want to handle each individual matter you may be dealing with.

Do not ask God to kill or bring down any kind of bodily harm or major calamity on your enemies.

Granted, God did strike and kill some of Israel’s enemies back in the OT, but let Him decide how He will fight each battle and what kinds of judgments He will want to render against anyone who is trying to unjustly hurt you. This is His territory, not ours.

In some of the different Bible Dictionaries and Commentaries, the word “curse” or “cursing” means the following:

  1. To call down evil upon others violently
  2. A call for evil to rest on someone
  3. Invocation of evil against one’s enemies

Notice in all 3 of these definitions, you are asking “evil” to come upon another for what they are trying to do against you. As you will see in one of the verses I will give you below, the Lord is flat out telling us that we are not to repay evil with evil. Instead He wants us to love them. bless them, and pray for them.

He does not want us asking God the Father to strike them dead or cause any kind of major calamity to occur in their lives.

Again, this is the Lord’s territory, and He will be the One who will decide what kind of corrective action will need to be taken with the enemies in your life, not you or any of your close friends or family members.

I know when you have been viciously wronged by another person, you will have an initial knee-jerk reaction to want to exact some kind of personal vengeance. You will either want to try and take matters into your own hands, or you will want to ask God to strike them with some kind of heavy blow due to whatever evil this person may have just struck you with.

But again, when you study the specific wording in the verses I will now give you, God does not want us taking this kind of action or having this kind of vengeful attitude. He wants you to have just the opposite kind of reaction. He will want you to love them, bless them, and pray for them.

I will now go ahead and break these verses down under 3 specific captions so you can really see what the Lord is trying to tell us on this topic.

1. Bless Those Who Will Persecute You – And Do Not Curse

This first verse will completely answer this question for all of us. This verse is coming from the apostle Paul. This verse is a very simple one-liner, but in it is a direct command from the Lord not to curse those who are trying to persecute us in any way. Instead we are to bless them.

Here it is:

“Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.” (Romans 12:14)

When Paul is telling us not to curse those who are trying to hurt us, I believe he is talking about cursing them in the way the above definitions are stating. I do not believe he is talking about curse words and swearing, which would be a different definition of this word.

You can tell by the context this word is being used in, that he is referring to using cursing to try and get evil to fall down upon someone else for what they may have done to you.

2. Love, Bless, and Pray For Your Enemies

These next two verses coming direct from Jesus Himself are now going to add more to all of this. In addition to Paul telling us to bless those who will try and persecute us and not to curse them, Jesus will now be asking all of us to actually love our enemies.

He is telling us in these two verses that we are to:

  1. Love them
  2. Bless them
  3. Pray for them
  4. Do good to those who hate you

If Jesus is telling us to love and bless our enemies, and to still continue to do good for them, this does not leave room for any type of cursing.

If God wants us to pray for our enemies, I do not think He will want us to pray that He bring down any kind of major misfortune or calamity on them, all just so we can get some kind of personal revenge for what they may have just done to us.

Here are two very strong and powerful verses direct from Jesus Himself on this tropic:

  1. “But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? … Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.” (Matthew 5:44-48)
  2. “But I say to you who hear: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you. To him who strikes you on the one cheek, offer the other also. And from him who takes away your cloak, do not withhold your tunic either. Give to everyone who asks of you. And from him who takes away your goods do not ask them back. And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise.But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive back, what credit is that to you? For even sinners lend to sinners to receive as much back. But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Highest. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.” (Luke 6:27-36)

In the Sanctification Section of our site, we have a very good article on how God wants us to love other people in this life. The title of this article is, “The Power of Love.” In this article is a section on how we can learn how to love even the worst of our enemies in the way that God would really like.

Notice in the last verse it says that even God Himself is kind and merciful to the unthankful and evil and we should also be the same way in our dealings with them.

3. Vengeance Belongs to the Lord – Not To Us

These next set of verses will now put the icing on this entire subject matter. These next set of verses will very clearly tell us that any kind of vengeance in this life belongs to the Lord, not to us, or any of our family members who would like to try and get even for us.

Here are two extremely strong verses, telling us in no uncertain terms, that vengeance in this life belongs to the Lord and not to any of us.

  1. “Repay no one evil for evil … live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves … for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. Therefore if your enemy hungers, feed him; if he thirsts, give him a drink … Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” (Romans 12:17-21)
  2. “God is jealous, and the Lord avenges; the Lord avenges and is furious. The Lord will take vengeance on His adversaries, and reserves wrath for His enemies; the Lord is slow to anger and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked.” (Nahum 1:2-3)

The first verse simply says it all. This verse is telling us to “repay no one evil for evil.”

Per the above definitions on what cursing is all about, these definitions are all using the word “evil” in them. When you curse someone else, you are in fact trying to call down some kind of an evil act to fall upon them for whatever they have personally done to you.

By the way this first verse is reading, you are in direct violation of this command from the Lord every time you try and curse someone, as you are trying to repay an evil act done against you with another evil act on your part. The very last part of this verse is telling us not to overcome evil with evil, but to overcome evil with good.

As you can from the way these verses are reading, the Lord wants us to do just the exact opposite. He wants us to love them, bless them, pray for them, and feed them – not to curse them and wish that any kind of major calamity or harm come upon them.

In the Psychological Issues section of our site, we have another good article on just this one topic. The title of this article is, “Vengeance Belongs to the Lord.” This article will give you more good commentary on this topic if there are any of you out there who are wrestling with the Lord on this issue due to what someone else may have done to you.

Conclusion

When you put all of these verses together like you would pieces to a jigsaw puzzle, I think the revelation comes through loud and clear. Though there was some cursing done back in the OT, I believe God wants all of us to live at a higher level in the NT now that we all have the Holy Spirit living on the inside of us to help sanctify us and transform us.

When God is now telling us to love our enemies, along with blessing them and praying for them, I do not think there is any room to directly try and curse them for whatever evil they may have done to us. As the last two verses have told us, any kind of vengeance and payback in this life belongs to the Lord, not to us.

As such, we should forgive all those who will trespass against us in this life and get on with the rest of our lives so we can complete and fulfill all of our divine destiny for the Lord.

When everything is all finally said and done, God will be righting all of the wrongs ever done to us by others in this life. That is why we can let go and let God, because it is now His job to take care of our enemies and what they may try and do to us in this life.

As you will see in reviewing the stories in our Testimonies section of our site, we can ask and petition God to come to our aid and help fight our battles when being unjustly attacked by others, but we have to let Him decide which strategies He will want to use and what kind of corrective action He will want to take when He does go into battle for us.

We are not to ask God to kill our enemies, or to bring down any kind of major calamity on them. I believe this is going too far, especially with how all of the above verses are being worded by the Lord.

The only Person who will be doing any kind of cursing in this life when it will be appropriate will be God Himself. Here is a good verse that will show you that God can curse someone if He will want to do so:

Now the Lord had said to Abram: “Get out of your country, from your kindred and from your father’s house, to a land that I will show you. I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” (Genesis 12:1-3)

All in all, I think Christians should abide by what the Lord is telling us in these New Testament verses and stay away from trying to curse anyone, no matter what kind of evil they may have done to you.

With God going to be judging everyone for every bad thing they have ever done if it has not been covered under the blood of Jesus before they die and cross over, we can let all of this go into His hands and get on with the rest of our lives. This life is way too short to be wallowing in the hurts and injustices of our past.

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20 Responses to “Are Christians Allowed to Curse Their Enemies?”

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  1. Folorunso - October 22, 2018 at 4:03 am

    The Lord calls us to love all men (though hate their sins). There are times that we are hurt deeply by loved ones or those who we know do not like us. The innate human response is to seek revenge but Christians are told to love, not curse. If we cursed someone and calamity befalls them, or worse, they end up in hell, whilst we are in paradise, would we be happy? Is that God’s wish? Is that what Christ died for?
    The curse of, and on cancer cells, animals, fruit trees and evil spirits are not the subjects of this doctrine: humans are the subjects. If they knew God and the love of God, they probably would not seek to harm us, so we should be gracious to them and not pray for recompense. I believe that God sees all, and will pay everybody, so why do I need to pray for someone’s misfortune?

  2. Vena - September 22, 2018 at 2:24 am

    So in other words, let my enemies keep hurting me and i have to put up with suffering, i love Jesus Christ but it sounds like he is saying let evil keep hurting me so i can go to Heaven, evil people are the most luckiest people on Earth because they can continue to be evil and nothing will happen to them because God loves them too. So i have to suffer for the rest of my physical life. This makes me sad

    • Selma Kelly - November 14, 2018 at 12:20 pm

      I don’t agree with this “lay down and take it” thing at all. My Bible says the evil will hit THEIR HOUSE not ours. Only with our eyes will we see it. Ps 91. If someone is harassing you in this world, you would call the police and have them arrested. Think of your children. Would you “bless” someone who tries to molest or abduct them?? Likewise, we have the right to BIND AND GAG evil things, places and people. Matthew 18:18. Therefore, if not even “fallen man” would put up with harassment and evil doers, nor should we. Feel free to UNLEASH God’s war angels to come to your assistance. They stand around doing nothing all day, looking for something to do. God also said, “Command the work of My hands.” Further, we do not need to let the devil and his cohorts “devour us.” Turn it back on them by your spoken word and ask God to let you SEE IT right in front of your face. “Who is this uncircumcized heathen who dares defy the Living God of Israel !!” Develop a War Persona.

  3. Ed W - April 7, 2017 at 7:45 pm

    There is a passage in the New Testament …. in reference to the apostles … whatever they curse – will be cursed – recognized on earth and in the heavenly realm.

    • Selma Kelly - November 14, 2018 at 5:46 pm

      Are you referring to Matthew 18:18. Whatever we bind will be bound here and in heaven. Yes, we have that right.

  4. Kevin - March 26, 2017 at 9:01 am

    Meditating on the same Carson. The Genesis verse indicates either only God has authority to curse our enemies, or this was specifically a proclamation for Abraham just for his lifetime…or maybe both!
    No doubt forgiveness and blessing subdue our anger and persuade us not to take matters into our own hands.
    But Psalms is filled with asking the Lord to avenge – consume, cause to perish, destroy, stumble. Interestingly, kill, slay, murder are not used as best as I can tell (Psalm 59:11).
    Even Paul has some interesting comments:

    (1Ti 1:20) These include Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I handed over to Satan so that they may learn not to blaspheme.
    (1Co 5:5) turn this man over to Satan for the destruction of his body, so that his spirit may be saved on the Day of the Lord.
    (2Ti 4:14) Alexander the metalworker did me a great deal of harm. The Lord will pay him back for what he did.

    For sure we should pray that no man would perish eternally and that God should judge and decide what our enemies deserve and by what methods He determines. And I must remind myself that plank in my eye is the first thing I should see.

  5. Carson Cole - February 22, 2017 at 4:30 am

    God said I will bless those who bless you and I will curse those who curse you. genesis 12:3. Jesus said, but I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you. Matthew 5:44. I
    f god requires this of us, how do we reconcile these two verses?

    • Gareth - July 25, 2017 at 5:57 am

      In reply to this quickly. Venegance is Gods not ours, as in Luke 18 we can ask for justice but then leave it to God to determine how to do it. God has the ability and the right to curse or bless whomever he wishes, but he has NOT given us that right. The only time we can curse is when we are within the delegated power God has assigned us, that is sickness and if he prompts against anyone he specifically prompts us to (this is like 1 in 10 million million chance). interestingly people who come up against you can well be directed to by the spiritual forces behind them, we have every right to destroy the demonic operating behind it, if it turns out not to be demonic , then only God can act justfully against a person. BTW: demons are not our equals, they are inferior to us in power delegated to us by Jesus.
      So basically your part is to forgive so that you cannot be hindered, God will do the rest and if its demonic (you will know via the Holy Spirit) then you can tear down those strongholds.

      • Akin - July 25, 2018 at 1:31 am

        Am I allowed to believe terrorist acts are demonic?

  6. Larry Kinsler - July 22, 2016 at 9:50 pm

    Consider this…Every Christian is told to pray ” The Lord’s Prayer “. In this prayer, we have the phrase ” Thy kingdom come. thy will be done in earth, as it is in Heaven ” ( Mt.6:10 ). Where is Jesus right now? At the ” right hand of the Majesty on high ” expecting until ” Thine enemies be made Thy footstool “. This language involves 1. conquering and 2. ruling over , enemies. One day, in Christ’s kingdom, Jesus will do just that; conquer and rule over His enemies. We may not realize it, but every time we pray ” The Lord’s Prayer’, we are, in fact, praying an ” imprecatory prayer ” as we expect Christ’s enemies to be subdued in Christ’s earthly Kingdom. Wow!

  7. Tom - December 4, 2014 at 7:52 pm

    I fully understand the very shaky ground we step onto when we either knowingly or unwisely speak a curse out on a person or life.
    How about sickness though? I was recently questioned about a prayer I spoke out at Church when I cursed sickness (in this case it was Cancer).
    I can’t remember the exact words I used but it was something like, “Today I bless every healthy cell and call them into life and strength and at the same time I curse every sick and rebellious cell that is causing this cancer and command them to wither and die in Jesus name!”
    I would appreciate thought s and feedback on this. if I am praying in error then I will repent immediately and without reserve as I want to see sickness gone and God’s power displayed.
    Thanks.

    • Akin - July 25, 2018 at 1:36 am

      Cancer isn’t a person but a demonic spirit. The Bible says “but we wrestle not against flesh and blood but against principalities and power” this scripture states that every demonic attack is an act of warfare and it shouldnt be allowed. My pastor always says “What you don’t want, you don’t watch”.

  8. Sandile - November 13, 2013 at 5:17 am

    Sometimes I sense that by experience one gains a right to judge and comment on such issues and that person is me, when I was converted I changed friends because I obeyed the Lord when He said that we should not be unequally yoked with unbelievers, then the storms came and because I couldn’t discern what was happening I Backslid ,,yes dumb decision and before I knew it I was back to the old me with the old friends and one of them put a hex on me due to the loophole I opened ,, so here’s my point-God says vengeance is Mine to repay ,iv forgiven that person wholeheartedly mainly because I cannot stoop to that level, im the righteousness of God and all these things will work together for my good even the bad stuff-Lloyd

  9. Paul Steward Pelok - October 22, 2013 at 10:03 pm

    First of all, I would like to thank God for bringing me to site website, I know this is not coincidently I was brought here and to further my knowledge. Eventhough I am born Catholic, many people out there like to curse us Catholic because they said we worship idols. To me what most important here is your heart, whether you like it or not, if you does not have LOVE in your life as Christian, than if you keep on cursing others, you be in the losing side because you will have to be answerable to Almighty Father, our Abba, our Daddy God what life you have choose during your stayed on this earth. Life is too short for us to always curse other. Vengeance belong to God, it does not belong to you and me.

  10. Gordon D G - February 8, 2013 at 9:01 am

    I just want to add as a P.S. to my last comment that MY personal feeling and conviction is that we are to Bless ALL who hate and curse us. And, we are love our enemies, but, we ARE to defend GOD’s Truths and defend GOD’s Anointed, but, still keeping in mind that ALL Vengeance belongs to GOD alone, and that Hell and the Lake of Fire will MORE than “make up” for any evil and cursing an enemy has brought upon us or upon our GOD, that is, IF they die in their sin, without having received GOD’s Forgiveness and Salvation in YAHUSHUA (JESUS).

  11. Gordon D G - February 8, 2013 at 8:57 am

    I know of a Ministry that teaches that we are not to curse our enemies when they are hating directly on US. But, if they are hating on the GOD we srve, or if they are hating on one of GOD’s modern Anointed leaders, and if they are hating on one of HIS true Ministries, then we are to “rebuke” them, and if those same “haters” actually send curses upon GOD’s anointed leader or Ministry then, we are to “return those curses back onto their own heads” as if it were like a boomerang. What say ye about this? Anybody any thoughts that are Divinely inspired??

    • marko - February 27, 2017 at 4:39 pm

      I have been pondering this a little bit lately since reading about Jesus cursing the fig tree and then teaching about sending the mountain into the sea through prayer. These are tantamount to cursing objects or institutions–the fig tree also represents (the leaders of) Israel at the time of Jesus. He pronounced many well-known ‘woes’ after the beatitudes. These seem to me to be the opposite of the blessings, though I might hesitate to qualify them as curses. How about Peter cursing Simon the magician: may you and your money perish! Acts 8:20.
      Perhaps there are yet specific times under the guidance of the Spirit when we have authority to curse, or perhaps it was an apostolic authority only and not to be emulated by us today except that we ask God to perform something in Jesus’ name. But Jesus pretty much teaches us to speak to the mountain: be uprooted! Mark 11

  12. bonolo - March 20, 2012 at 4:04 am

    The word of God says the BATTLE IS NOT YOURS.. it is GOD’s….

  13. elaine - February 21, 2012 at 12:19 pm

    i beg to disagree about cursing your enemies. It is not the individuakls that you should curse but the spirits that lie behind them. Look at Psalm 28 v4. Also look at Psalms 35 and 59, here David was asking God to destroy his enemies. So, is the Bible record of these incidences incorrect?

  14. al - February 1, 2012 at 10:58 pm

    Lord, how they have increased who trouble me. Many are they who rise up against me…but I cried to the Lord and He heard me…I will not be afraid of ten thousands of people who have set themselves against me all around…Arise oh Lord, for you have struck all my enemies on the cheekbone: you have broken the teeth of the ungodly…for you alone Lord, make me dwell in safety…you shall destroy those who speak falsehood…the lord abhors the bloodthirsty and deceitful man….for there is no faithfulness in their mouth and their inward part is destruction…their throat is an open tomb…they flatter with their tongue…pronounce them guilty oh God. Let them fall by their own counsels.

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