You can be bitter against two kinds of people.
- Lost people going to Hell. Hell is bad enough to pay for what he did, so being bitter against him is — Stupid.
- Saved and forgiven people. The Son of God died for it, and that is good enough to pay for what he did, so being bitter against him is — Stupid.
30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:
32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.
Verse 30: bitterness grieves the Holy Spirit — Really Stupid.
Verse 32: refusal to forgive denies God’s forgiveness for you — Really, Really Stupid.
Few things are more stupid than bitterness, for it undercuts a faith founded on forgiveness. I suppose that’s why Satan wants bitterness for us. Choosing what Satan wants is, of course, stupid.
If you struggle with bitterness, just stop. Remember Hell, remember the Cross, remember you have been forgiven. You do have a choice. End the stupidity. Stop now.
Could I add another counsel to your closing portion?
“If you struggle with bitterness, just stop. Remember Hell, remember the Cross, remember you have been forgiven. You do have a choice. End the stupidity. Stop now.”
Indeed, if you have yielded to betterness, repent now; for it is sin against the Lord our God.
Pastor Scott Markle
Yes, thank you, Brother Markle. One would hope the word “repent” is unnecessary when addressing believers who are grieving the Spirit, but you are right, it is best to be explicit.
For a time my family had a shadow cast over it by accusations made by an employee in a public sector organsation. These were never properly dealt with by by an investigation and the investigation itself was a whitewash. For a long time after we had received the grudging apology from the organisation concerned, I was bitter about the employee whose conduct had prevented the situation from being properly resolved. But when I decided that I would forgive the person concerned, a weight was lifted from my shoulders. I felt that I could do so much more because I was not spending time and energy uselessly fuming about the injustice that had happened. The sooner we forgive, the sooner we can be more nearly the person that God created us to be.
Hi, Fred. Bitterness is such a waste of energy. Probably most of us have experienced that. It just eats away at you. Sin always does, but this sin seems to be more corrosive than most. I think that is because we depend on forgiveness, and bitterness is the antithesis of forgiveness. It is so destructive.
You’ve triggered some thoughts on forgiveness re: repentance that I probably need to post on the front page, so I won’t go into it here.
Pingback: Bitterness « Christians Are Us