“Shake yourself from the dust, arise; sit down, O Jerusalem! Loose yourself from the bonds of your neck, O captive daughter of Zion!”
To shake means to loose, the dust is the negative residue you are carrying into your present and future from the past, and to arise is to take a stand of faith, and give it over to God instead of giving in to the enemy. He WANTS YOU TO KEEP IT! WAKE UP AND GIVE THAT NEGATIVE BAGGAGE TO GOD! And to sit down is to rest in the peace of God’s forgiveness, restoration, and retribution.
You came to God for freedom from the hold sin has on you, so why do you want to hang on to it? The negative past you are holding on to is keeping you captive! Shake it loose!
“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.” (Galatians 5:1)
I. Shake it Off!
III. Forgive, Including Yourself
IV. Move On!
I. Shake It Off!
Everyone has a past and no one is exempt from being on the receiving end of someone else’s bad choices resulting from their free will. Not only that, but everyone also makes bad choices; we all do so we have to reap the consequences of our own bad choices and mistakes.
The Lord is telling you that you do NOT have to carry those consequences with you into your future. It is time to shake off offense, self-pity, resentment, bitterness, unforgiveness, shame, guilt, low self-esteem, etc. The list goes on and it is time to shake it off!
By the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, you are valuable! Believe it, receive it, and accept it!
“But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” (I Peter 2:9)
You will never go forward with your head in the past. Get over it, do what needs to be done, and move on!
“The Lord our God spoke to us in Horeb, saying: ‘You have dwelt long enough at this mountain.” (Deuteronomy 1:6)
In order to move on you need to get rid of all that negative baggage. In our verse, it says to shake the dust off. This is relating to all the baggage you carry with you from the past that you have not let go of; much like the dust that sticks to your free from where you came from.
You may have done things wrong and now you regret it. You cannot hold onto sin and expect God to bless you. Like any good Father, He will correct you and do it because sin leaves an open door to the enemy. He is gentle in heart and is waiting for you to ask for forgiveness, so what is holding you back?
“My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; for whom the Lord loves He chastens, and scourges every son whom He receives.”
“Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” (Matthew 11:29)
“If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.” (I John 1:8-10)
III. Forgive, Including Yourself
The next piece of negative baggage we need to shake off is to forgive! How can we ask God to forgive us and then think we are better than He is by harboring unforgiveness for others, including ourselves? When He says to forgive, that means everyone, including ourselves.
“For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.”
“Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.” (Luke 6:37)
Unforgiveness carries a heavy weight; it is time to shake it off. Place matters in God’s hands and He will take care of them and better than we can.
“Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; He will never let the righteous be shaken.” (Psalm 55:22)
“Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord.” (Romans 12: 17-19)
IV. Move On!
In our verse it tells you to arise, meaning to stand up in faith and trust the God who died for you to heal you and give you restoration, healing, and victory!
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.
(I Peter 5:8-9)
“But I will restore you to health and heal your wounds,’ declares the LORD, ‘because you are called an outcast, Zion for whom no one cares.’”
That is what is meant by the next phrase in our verse, “sit down.” This means to allow your spirit and soul to rest, trust in God and walk in His everlasting peace.
Are you ready to shake off the dust of the past?
“Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD rises upon you.” (Isaiah 60:1)