Introduction to curses about what is a curse and how to break a curse is an article from - a website about a new paradigm for prayer so that our prayers can be both effective and safe.  Content by George Hartwell M.Sc.

George Hartwell M.Sc.

George Hartwell M.Sc. is a Christian counselor with a masters degree from the University of Calgary, 40 years experience and who integrates prayer therapy into his professional counseling practice.

See: About George.  Follow short prayers by George on Twitter at PrayForYour Life  


Introduction to Curses and How to Break a Curse by G. Hartwell

Introduction to Curses and How to Break a Curse is by George Hartwell M.Sc. © 2009 (416) 234-1850 About George - Christian counselor, About George's Professional-practice   )

1.  Definition of a Curse

My definition of a curse is the harmful spiritual energy released against another by the use of witchcraft, hateful words, slander, by one's hateful attitude and even by negative and controlling 'Christian' prayer.  This is the energy of hate and has been given the spiritual equivalent of murder by Jesus in Matthew 5:22 ("anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgement.")

This energy - curse energy - is negative and destructive.  The one hating and the one cursing wants to harm or destroy another.  This is evil.  One who creates curses is a worker of iniquity or a worker of evil.  One interpretation of "workers of iniquity" in Psalms 5:5, 6:8, 14:4, 28:3, 36:12, 37:1 etc. were sorcerers thought to have cast a spell on the sufferer.  The word for 'evil' being close to the word for 'power.'

But the motive to hurt, destroy, murder can be expressed in negative words of slander and destructive gossip.  The energy is the same as that in a curse against someone.  Hate expressed in insults hurled against a person is abuse; is sin.  Hate is murderous energy however it is expressed.

Note that not all anger is murderous, abusive or sinful.  Our angry we be clean, positive energy that deals constructively with the issue.  Anger in a Biblical rebuke does not attack the person.  The focus of healthy anger is solving problems, setting boundaries, confronting injustice and disciplining behaviour.  Anger can be good loving energy.  For more see: love, anger, hate and forgiveness.

In the spirit harbouring an attitude of resentment and ill will toward another has a negative effect.  That is why Jesus insisted that we learn to forgive from the heart.  Forgiveness means laying down ill will, hatred and the 'right to get even.'  Forgiveness does not mean that there are no consequences for behaviour.  Forgiveness does not mean that we are not angry.  We may still need to talk about the issues.  Forgiveness just means we fix our heart on having loving intentions and on dropping all weapons used to hurt another.

For more about the definition of a curse see the article "What is a Curse?  How to define a Curse."

2.  The Effects of Curses

To understand the effects of curses and cursing, it is good to remind ourselves of these principles:

The attitude of hate and bitterness (the negative form of 'judging'), slander and curses effects both sender and receiver.  Think of it as a undermining, blocking, binding force.  It causes damage, bondage, oppression and torment.  The harm is equally destructive on both the sender and the receiver.

A curse is a force of evil operating in a spiritually tangible way that can be noticed in very real effects.  There will be losses, illness and death of some manifestation of these.  Accidents happen.  Jobs are lost.  Things go missing.  We lose our temper.  We lose our peace.  We lose communion with God.  We lose guidance and protection.

It is important for the recipient of hate, slander, curses to take authority over this evil force.  Like the writer of Psalm 118 you want to cut them off like bees.  "I cut off any curse, hatred, slander or negative prayers in the name of Jesus.  I ask for God to protect as I forgive.  May Jesus be my shield.  I put Jesus in between me and anyone cursing me."

3.  Daily Prayers of Protection - includes from Curses

It is important to know how to pray daily for protection.  For this see: Daily Prayer of Protection from Agnes Sanford and How to pray for protection

Here is one example of a short Prayer of Protection: "I sign myself with the sign of the cross, cover myself with the blood of Jesus and surround myself with God's holy presence so nothing can get through to hurt me in Jesus' name. Amen."

I was taught to do this with hand motions so I make the sign of the cross on my forehead, wave my hand over my head and then make a circle motion around my body.  The cross is where Jesus 'became a curse' and by doing so freed us from curses and 'redeemed us from the curse of the law.'  Galatians 3:13.

Note: You may accidently remove protection by praying unsafe prayers,  by having a lot of 'anger' (resentment, bitterness and hostility) in your heart or by prideful 'spiritual warfare.'

4.  Daily Prayer of Protection from Curses

Next you want to know a general daily prayer of protection focused on curses.  Curses don't just go away.  You need to be active not passive.  You want to be active without getting into unsafe prayers.  When sensing that you are under attack from a curse or know it is possible, then use a daily prayer of protection.

For a good daily prayer of protection from curses I suggest: "In Jesus name I cut off any curse coming against me or my loved ones."  (  This is taken from Psalm 118:110 which reflects what David said when confronting Goliath "I come against you in the name of Yahweh (the LORD) Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel." 

This prayer can be done right after the daily prayer of protection.  You may emphasize your meaning by

 making a motion of cutting with your hand.  See video >>>

For more on this see: Protection from Curses - a Christian Perspective.

5.  How to Break Off a specific Curse

The "Jesus in Between" Prayer is very effective in deliverance, blocking curses, stopping transference of spirits and cutting soul ties.  In this prayer we ask Jesus to come in between us and the source of curses, transference of spirits, etc. 

It happened shortly after Jean's friend John died.  Shortly after that Jean found that she had a "spirit of gluttony." She remembered that John had a tendency to gluttony.  I had heard of 'transference of spirits' and my theory was that an evil spirit in John had transferred to Jean.  I asked Jean to listen as I prayed and then report what happened.  I prayed for Jesus to be in between John and Jean as a stopping place; that Jesus in between Jean and John would shield Jean from any transference of spirits from John to Jean.  The result was very real for Jean.  She could picture Jesus in between her and John.  She felt protected.  She repjorted that any feeling of gluttony had left completely.

For more about how to break off specific curse see: How to break a curse - a Christian Perspective using the Jesus in Between in Prayer Therapy method to remove a curse.

6.  The Shame Curses - Curses Created by one's family or group.

When a family consistently puts one child in a place of never being acknowledged or listened to, the child begins to receive that as a 'Shame Curse' - an evil message that says "You don't have any place here.  You don't have the right to be hear.  Be gone.  Be invisible.  Don't be."

So the "Shame Curse" is an unusual type of curse.  The shame curse is the result of messages, spoken and unspoken, from family even if they were not intended as harmful.  Exclusion and shut down are not a life-giving messages.  They send a message of death even if not intended.

The 'shame curse' is in effect on the child whose property is not valued.  It is imposed on children whose voice is not heard.  It may be directed, for example, on the one who is assigned a role such as 'the baby.'   They may grow up to find they have never been taken seriously and they are still not.

Another toxic role is to be hated as one's gender.  Typical is a father who wants a boy and you are his first born and a girl.  A toxic selfish father will reject his daughter and her femiminity.

When parents cannot admit to any wrong yet see wrong all around them, they often have one 'good child' and one 'bad child.'  The treatment of the 'bad child' - the one who is not accepted - acts as a shame curse.

People in such family roles develop behavior, attitudes and core beliefs of one who has been placed in a 'outcast' role in their family from which they found no escape.  They come to believe that they are "wrong" in some way, they don't have a place in their group and, therefore, in life.  They live as if they believe they don't have the right to be alive, as if they have internalized the hate messages of their family.

The shame curse has a traumatic effect on victims.  It can bring about ill health, depression and failure to prosper in life.  The person may become afraid of life.  They may engage in relationships with life partners that are not life-giving.  Bad things may happen to them just like one is under a curse.

Realize, though, that this is worse than a curse - it is a series of messages, sent repeatedly, when you can neither excape or reason for yourself.  Inner healing and restoration requires God's 'only you can heal my life' love and power.  It requires reversing one's 'obedience' to the curse because of one's loyalty to one's family.  Deeply imbedded inner core programming need to be reversed and healed.

One's inner person (human spirit or inner child) may have gone into hiding or is playing dead.  One may feel lost and out of touch with deeper feelings.  There will be no new life without a release of the spirit.  Such release requires Jesus' 'I came to set the captives free' ministry.  He is the true doctor of the soul.

More about the shame curse see the article Defining a Shame Curse.

7.   Questions and Answers - a specific case

A man writes: Pastors and leaders of church prayed for my healing, but nothing seem to help, until I told myself that I am cursed and only God can save me. I prayed and God managed to heal my body. I truly believe that my ex-wife and family did something and is still trying to see my downfall. Every action of theirs seems to throw me off my purpose in life. I do not want to hate her, but forgive her and show her that life is not about revenge or hatred. I need some advice on how to free myself from this curse that is put on my head and to live as God wants me to live and to find my purpose in life. Only God can free me and I need to protect myself from the curses that were brought onto me.  Please give me some advice or daily prayers to heal and protect me from this evil that was put on my head.

  1. I suggest daily prayers of protection including the phrase: "In Jesus name I cut off any curse coming against me." 

  2. I suggest prayer asking Jesus to come between you and those sending this curse.  "Jesus I ask you to be my Good Shepherd and Protector and be my Shield.  I place you between me and my ex-wife and anyone else joining her in cursing me.  I do not ask for revenge upon them but I do ask for protection from their curses."  This prayer is done with a picture of Jesus in between you and them (in your imagination.)

  3. In terms of revenge (which you are right not to pray for) you could pray like this.  Jesus I put them in your hands.  If they are working evil and not acting according to your will, I ask you to deal with them.  If it be your will then, as the psalmist might say, may they fall into the traps that they have set for me.   You deal with them.  God, you be my protector and avenger.

  4. Better, though, that you pray as Jesus taught, blessings upon those that curse you.  That the Holy Spirit would lead them in the paths of life, love and God.

  5. Daily thank God for being your Protector, Provider and Healer.

8.  An example of a prayer of protection from and removing of a curse.

Father, please keep this mother and her children safe from evil curses and all other modes of evil.

May they be 'hidden in Christ.'

Thank you that Jesus became a curse on the cross so we would be protected from curses.

He 'took the bullet' for  and this mother and her chiildren and we receive that protection of Jesus in between them and this man.

As we claim you, God, as Our Protector, we also want to learn from you our part in maintaining that protection.  May the victory go to Your Kingdom.

we do pray in the authority of Jesus' name.

your servant, George

9.  I have just written an article about the use of prayer for a heavenly peace bond to break curses.

Introduction to Curses and How to Break a Curse is by George Hartwell © 2010.

Other articles by George Hartwell related to 'Types of Curses:'

What is a Curse?

Some Protection Prayers or How to pray for protection

Protection from Curses

Introduction to Breaking Curses

How to Break a Curse with 'Jesus in Between'  see also

Breaking Curses with 'Jesus in Between'

Dealing with African Witchcraft

Oppression from spells, curses and voodoo

Breaking a Curse by Praying for a Peace Bond

Understanding what I mean by a Shame curse 

Defining a Shame curse

Inner Healing prayer for Shame and Cancer

A conversation about the Shame Curse

Dialogues with People Who Want to Break a Curse:

Witchcraft, Spell or Curse in Africa - a Plea or Help


This is my permission for non-commercial use given proper internet reference with link back to this site.

More about George Hartwell on:  I offer phone counseling as well as regular individual and couple counslling sessions.

Introduction to Breaking Curses  What is a Curse?  How to pray for protection   Protection from Curses  How to Break a Curse   Defining a Shame curse  inner-healing prayer for shame   Breaking a Shame curse   How to do listening prayer   prayers for money-finances    inner-healing prayer   How to pray for protection 

Listening-prayer Home  Healing Prayer   Healing prayers for cancer   Biblical Basis for listening prayer

George Hartwell M.Sc. is a Christian counselor with a masters degree in clinical psychology and 30 years experience in private practice.  To learn all About George or his professional practice see: George's Professional web site, Christian marriage counselling, Christian phone therapy, and Christian Marriage Retreats.  To e-mail George click on: