Act 8:9 But there was a certain man, called Simon, which beforetime in the same city used sorcery, and bewitched the people of Samaria, giving out that himself was some great one:
I found this story to be quite interesting with regard to how powerful our emotions can be in our lives. If we let them, our emotions can rule and capture us unto death. The Bible doesn't go into detail with regard to Simon the Sorcerer's background, but it's evident that his heart was not right in that it had been captured by the poison of bitterness. He had allowed the root of bitterness to grow into full fruition in his life, and he developed an appetite for power and control over the lives of others. So big was his lust for power that he offered to pay the Apostle Peter for the power of the Holy Spirit, seeing the great works and wonders that they performed.
A sorcerer is a male that practices witchcraft. Witches practice through various means the art of exerting their will over the will of others. Often times they are lead by evil spirits and gain knowledge and power through occult means. In Simon's case, out of the root of bitterness he gained a thirst to rule and reign over others and was willing to pay for more knowledge leading to the acquisition of more power. His heart was weighed and found wanting. He responded by seeking prayer and that the judgement spoken not be carried out.
One of the pillars for achieving optimal health and wellness is to avoid deadly emotions and to not allow them to rule and reign over our lives. If we allow deadly emotions like bitterness, anger, hatred, jealously, and others to set into our hearts and take root, then we are opening ourselves up for trouble providing the enemy of our souls openings in which to come into our lives and wreck havoc. We must avoid allowing the root of bitterness to settle into our hearts at all cost given that it always produces ugly, evil, and disgusting works of destruction that not only effect us, but those we love and hold dear around us. We are emotional beings and will experience situations and circumstances that will tempt us into bitterness, but we are to give way to the Holy Spirit, practice self discipline, and not let our emotions get the best of of us.
The Bible admonishes us to put away bitterness, to quit biting and devouring one another, and to recognize that it belongs to the world and to those who live according to their carnal nature. It's not to be named amongst the brotherhood and we are to work to keep this ugly root along with its evil fruit out due to its destructive nature. For instance, Ephesians 4:31-32 says, "Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you." Similarly, Hebrews 12:15 states, "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" Finally, Galatians 5:19-21 says, "Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revelings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God." Thus, the root of bitterness leads to a tree of rotten fruit that no one would want to eat from or be around.
In looking at today's world I can definitely say that this is easier to write about then to live out. I have to stay before the Father daily on this one and know first hand how much destruction it can bring to our lives if we let it. A few lessons that I've learned over the recent past is that I must die to myself daily. I can't allow my emotions to get the best of me because every time I allow this to happen it leads to the destruction of relationships and harmony amongst my community. I have to practice self-control and self-discipline with regards to my mouth in how I address others, in addition to being aware of the tone of m y voice and the attitude of display in my non-verbal communication. I have to learn to live and let live. I can truly say to God be the glory with regard to the breaking of the chain of bitterness in my life. You often forget how freeing and light life can be once you allow the Spirit to work in your life. I must say that I'm still a work in progress on this matter, but I'm not were I used to be. I'm saying all this to give witness to the fact that God can do the same for you as well if you happen to be dealing with this deadly emotion or any other. There is hope in the darkness and you too can overcome and crawl through the deep, dark tunnel of bitterness. If you allow the Father to work in your life, He can pluck that root out with no problem! To God be the glory!
In short, we are admonished to not let our emotions get the best of us, and that through the power of the Holy Spirit we can gain freedom from deadly emotions that seek to bring us to our demise. One of our pillars is the avoidance of deadly emotions and this an area that has to be cultivated along with the other pillars for opitimal health and wellness. May the grace of Lord be with you always!
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