“Where there is jealousy and selfishness, there is also disorder and every kind of evil.  But the wisdom from above is pure first of all; it is also peaceful, gentle, and friendly; it is full of compassion and produces a harvest of good deeds; it is free from prejudice and hypocrisy.  And goodness is the harvest that is produced from the seeds the peacemakers plant in peace.” (James 3:16-18) (GNB).

Personal relationships are like bridges, they channel us from one place to another. We are engaged in bridged relationships in every corner of our lives.  We are born into bridged relationships through our primary family. Generally, primary family members stay bridged throughout their entire lives. However, the fact that there is a bridge in family relationships does not, in any way, suggest that the bridged relationship is healthy.  In fact, many family members communicate with each other for reasons that are toxic and leads to carnal and spiritual death!  Many adults tolerate bridged relationships with parents who are worldly and give them everything their hearts desire. Then you have adult children who labor in bridged relationships with verbally and physically abusive parents. The primary family bridges are the bridges I would like to focus on in this article.  These are Man-Made Bridges that Leads to Spiritual Death.

Now, before you all start ducking and dodging and saying, “not me and my family”.  Please take the time to understand what the Lord is relating to my spirit to share with you all. I tell you the truth, a Christian would not be offended at all, in fact, they can understand this message from a spiritual prospective.  Only a Man-Made Bridge would collapse under the power of this truth. So, say your prayers and read this article to the glory of God. I pray at the end of it, you will be ready to tear down some Man-Made bridges in your life.

Family bridges are important and spiritually powerful, if they are built on the foundation of Jesus Christ.  But if you are in a relationship with a family member whose bridge is leading your heart and spirit into a dark and salty place; this bridge is compromised and unsafe for your soul. A bridge that is a crossing into lies, deceit, hypocrisy, jealousy, prejudice and selfishness it is going to collapse under the weight of God’s rebuke.  A bridge is built to take a certain amount of weight.  But when the weight of truth and righteousness stands on it, the bridge will fall, and those who are continually crossing this bridge into spiritual death will fall with it! Family members are just as dangerous as strangers when they are not spiritually rooted in Jesus Christ. Just because they attend Sunday morning service does not mean they have been baptized in the Holy Spirit.  If these members are still causing division and strife in your family and not peace, I would say this bridge is a Man-Made Bridge That Leads to Spiritual Death!

In the epistle of James, he is showing us two bridges: A bridge that leads to God and a bridge that leads to the world.  The bridges that leads to God embraces all that is holy and righteous.  The other bridge, the worldly bridge, leads to all kinds of evil devices and deception. We must take inventory of the bridges we are crossing and determine where they are leading us.  James went on to describe the bridges that are embracing the ways of God. Such as, peaceful, gentle and friendly, which produces a harvest of good deeds. He informs us of the integrity of the bridge, and if the bridge meets the building standards of Jesus Christ.  James wants us to observe if all the scriptural specifications have been met according to the commandments of God.

Bridges that lead us into hate, lies, jealousy, prejudice and other unseemly spiritual misconduct, is not a bridge we should be crossing, no matter who it is in our life. Some of the most dangerous people in our lives is family. Even if you are happy in the company of your backsliding or non-Christian family members, it is still a bridge that will lead to spiritual death. If your family has taught you to be an atheist, this is a faulty man-made bridge. It is not all right with God, and if you know that is the truth and do not make a firm stand in Jesus, then their blood is on your head! There are no free passes to enter into the kingdom of God, only through true repentance can anyone enter in.  We all must make a personal and conscious decision to accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior.  Our fathers, mothers, brothers and sisters will have to kneel before Jesus Christ just like everybody else! “For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God. So, then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.” (Romans 14: 11-12). My dear sister, who went home to be with the Lord, said to me one day after she became a Christian, “You know after you gave your life to Jesus, every time I saw you coming with your briefcase in your hand, I knew you were coming to preach Jesus Christ and repentance to me again!” Friends, my sister was SAVED when she left this life, glory to God! I refused to cross the bridge into her world, instead, God used me to lead her to the crossing bridge of Jesus Christ. A righteous bridge leads to Christ and not hate and division.  If a family member is a destroyer of love and peace, know the spiritual endangerment their bridge leads too!

What is this article all about, you ask?  It’s about knowing how to spiritually identify man-made bridges that will lead us to spiritual death! It’s about bad bridges we are walking across and getting hung up with people and their spiritual junk! The epistle of James is about having spiritual discernment and the ability to recognize a fruitful and righteous person who is about the work of the kingdom of God! One who has grown in understanding and love. Also discovering on the bridge of righteous, the love and peace of God that is implanted in the heart of the righteous. More families are divided by what is said than what is done! “But the tongue can no man tame, it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.” (James 3:8).  “Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing.  My brethren, these things ought not to be so.” (James 3:10). It is time that we stop crossing bridges to join a world of bitterness and envy, solely with the evil intent to exclude the righteousness of God.  The epistle of James teaches us that believers who cross the bridge into the world, will become specialists in all kinds of evil. These bridges are demonic and unspiritual, and anything can happen to your soul at the crossing. Look for the bridge that leads to life in Jesus Christ.  Remember, a person who is governed by the Holy Spirit speaks of sincere peace and the holy things of God.  A person who is governed by godly love and wisdom promotes love, peace and unity.  Beware, Man-made Bridges Leads to Spiritual Death! Amen!

For the record, this is written for those who are struggling with family bridges that are causing them spiritual confusion in their heart. Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6).  God bless you and amen!

Written by Rev. Jessica L. Matthews, Missionary Pastor


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