Love in Context: The Root of Bitterness |Pastor Mac Hammond | September 11, 2022

We live in a time where we can’t simply live on cruise control. We need to focus our attention outward, tune into the Spirit of God, and learn how to live daily by the law of love. Love isn’t a feeling, but an action. Love is a choice to put others first. How do we do this? This past weekend, Pastor Mac continued teaching from his series, Love in Context, and he focused on how to deal with the root of bitterness, for bitterness corrupts and defiles and keeps you from fulfilling the royal law of love. It must be eliminated from our lives through the power of forgiveness! 

Dive Deeper:
God’s love is unconditional. He gives it to every person without discrepancy of who they are or what they have done. God wants us to give His love to others. That is not easy, but it is 100% possible!

What does it look like to give of God’s love to other people? First, it is done with truth as its foundation. Love without truth is deceptive. Second, we love people through following peace. We don’t stir up conflict or fan the flames of disorder. We follow after peace. Third, we follow after holiness. 

If you want your relationships to be typified by peace—or you could say, the absence of conflict—you will ensure that bitterness is not allowed in your heart. A root of bitterness is the worst cancer, spiritually speaking, that a person can experience. It not only will rob you of everything that’s worth experiencing in the kingdom of God, but it will ultimately kill you.

Bitterness is often a product of feeling betrayed by someone close to you, but it can only exist in your life if you choose not to forgive. Unattended unforgiveness will progress to a root of bitterness. That means that you have to stop keeping a list of the wrongs someone else has done to you. You have to learn to forgive, and then deal with offense when it comes your way so that offense isn’t allowed to stay. It is vital to deal with the root of bitterness through forgiveness!

Read About It: 
Hebrews 12:14–15 KJV
Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;

James 2:8 KJV
If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well:

2 John 1:1–3 KJV
The elder unto the elect lady and her children, whom I love in the truth; and not I only, but also all they that have known the truth; for the truth’s sake, which dwelleth in us, and shall be with us for ever. Grace be with you, mercy, and peace, from God the Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, in truth and love.

Ephesians 4:15 KJV
But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:

Discussion Questions: 
1. Do you currently have a mental list of the offenses that someone else has done to you? How can you get rid of this list through forgiveness?
2. Who can you forgive today?
3. Why does it sometimes seem easier to hold onto bitterness rather than choosing forgiveness?

Rewatch or catch up on the full sermon with the link below!