bitterness and resentment

Problem

Allowing an offence towards us or disappointments to germinate in our hearts, many times coloring our thoughts and actions both consciously and subconsciously. It is characterized by an unforgiving spirit and generally negative, critical attitudes.

Biblical Statement

Bitterness and resentment are sinful and self-defeating. Love dispels them. Harbored they destroy, destruct and kill ( Galatians 5:19,21 “Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.”)

Scripture

Hebrews 12:14,15 – “Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord: 15looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled;”

Ephesians 4:31, 32- “Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. 32And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you”

1 Peter 2:23 – “who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously”

Luke 23:24 – “So Pilate gave sentence that it should be as they requested”?

Matthew 6:14, 15 – “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.”

Romans 12:14-21 – “Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion. 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. Therefore “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him a drink; for in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”

Counsel

If needed minister salvation. Repentance is necessary. Ask if caller wants to be rid of these emotions. No one can be happy with peace in the heart with such emotions tearing at them.

If the counselee is a Christian he can ask God to forgive him for being bitter and resentful. Then he must ask God to forgive the one(s) toward whom he is bitter and resentful, even as he forgives the person(s).

Minister baptism with the Holy Spirit if applicable. If the counselee has a fear of facing the person(s) resented, deliverance from fear may be indicated. Encourage him to look for opportunity to demonstrate love and  to ask for freedom to love the offender.

Prayer

Father I acknowledge that I’ve held resentment and bitterness against_________. I confess this as sin and ask you to forgive me. I forgive ________. Help me Lord to not hold anymore resentments, but rather to love this person. Father, I ask you to also forgive ______. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

References

(Share only 2 or 3 verses of each area)

Malice

Hatred

Envy

Bitterness

1 Corinthians 5:8 , 14:20

Leviticus 19:17

Psalm 37:1

Acts 8:23

Colossians 3:8

Proverbs 10:12

Proverbs 3:31

Romans 3:14

1 Peter 2:1

Proverbs 15:17

Proverbs 23:17

Ephesians 4:31

Ester 3:6

1 John 2:9

Galatians 5:26

Hebrews 12:15

Psalm 140:3

1 John 4:20

Genesis 26:14

James 3:14

Isaiah 59:5

 

Matthew 27:18

 

Matthew 27:23

 

John 12:10

 

Acts 7:54