Bitter Waters
by Priscilla Van Sutphin
Jan 14th, 2010

                  Ancient Hebrew                      bitterness

 In the ancient Hebrew...“The Mem has a "m" sound and is a picture of waves of water. This letter can also mean the flowing water of man & animals, the blood. Blood is passed from one generation to another & can therefore mean "from." When this letter is prefixed to the word erets the word me'erets is formed meaning "from a land."  


 Resh which is above in ANCIENT HEBREW - The Ancient picture for this letter is, the head of a man. This letter has the meanings of head or man as well as chief, top, beginning or first.  The modern Hebrew name for this letter is resh, a Hebrew word meaning head. 
Combined, these letters mean waterhead or head waters.  The Ancient Hebrew lexicon goes on to explain the head waters of a river are only a trickle and have stagnant pools causing the water to be bitter. Something that is bitter of taste or attitude. Rebellion is one with a bitter attitude
Bitterness is also associated with grief, provoke, vex & weakness.

Bitter from Webster’s dictionary:
Etymology: Middle English, from Old English biter; akin to Old High German bittar bitter, Old English bītan to bite — Date: before 12th century
1 a : being or inducing the one of the four basic taste sensations that is peculiarly acrid, astringent, or disagreeable and suggestive of an infusion of hops — compare salt, sour, sweet b : distasteful or distressing to the mind : galling <a bitter sense of shame>
2 : marked by intensity or severity: a : accompanied by severe pain or suffering <a bitter death> b : being relentlessly determined : vehement <a bitter partisan> c : exhibiting intense animosity <bitter enemies> d (1) : harshly reproachful <bitter complaints> (2) : marked by cynicism and rancor <bitter contempt> e : intensely unpleasant especially in coldness or rawness <a bitter wind> 3 : expressive of severe pain, grief, or regret <bitter tears>

You’ll see as we go to the scriptures how much the above is illustrated in them.
Eph 4:31-5:2 AMP  Let all bitterness and indignation and wrath (passion, rage, bad temper) and resentment (anger, animosity) and quarreling (brawling, clamor, contention) and slander (evil-speaking, abusive or blasphemous language) be banished from you, with all malice (spite, ill will, or baseness of any kind). 32 And become useful and helpful and kind to one another, tenderhearted (compassionate, understanding, loving-hearted), forgiving one another [readily and freely], as God in Christ forgave you. 

5:1 THEREFORE BE imitators of God [copy Him and follow His example], as well-beloved children [imitate their father]. 2  And walk in love, [esteeming and delighting in one another] as Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us, a slain offering and sacrifice to God [for you, so that it became] a sweet fragrance. [Ezek 20:41.]
O.T. - KJV: bitter, bitterness, bitterly, chafed, angry, discontented, heavy Strongs 4751 which is used in the following verses…

1 Sam 1:10-11 KJV    [ from story of Hannah ]
And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed unto the Lord, and wept sore.  11 And she vowed a vow, and said, O Lord of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child, then I will give him unto the Lord all the days of his life, and there shall no razor come upon his head.

Hannah was grieved sorely at the tauntings of the other wife and grief over
Not having a child.  It makes you wonder if God allowed it to have a child dedicated to HIS purposes, knowing how she was so faithful and would respond.

Job 7:11 Therefore I will not refrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit; I will complain in the bitterness of my soul.    KJV

Job had plenty to grieve for with all the loss he went through, yet he was not indicting God in hatefulness of heart…loss of children, loss of livestock,
Having a wife that said curse God and die old man was surely no help.

Job 10:1-3 NKJV  "My soul loathes my life; I will give free course to my complaint, I will speak in the bitterness of my soul. 2 I will say to God, 'Do not condemn me; Show me why You contend with me. 3 Does it seem good to You that You should oppress, that You should despise the work of Your hands, and smile on the counsel of the wicked? 

We know from the rest of the story that Job had reason to wonder don’t we? After all when Satan went to God, God bragged on Job and on how wonderful Job was, and Satan said, well let me test him and see if he won’t curse you.  And Satan taunted GOD, that if he touched him in his body, surely he would curse God.  Interesting given that so many today think that
Those with sickness are not suffering persecution from the enemy, but being punished or something when this is a clear example of the enemy testing whether Job would stay faithful to GOD.  It is no different today, except that we now have the blood of JESUS to cover us and can run to the throne of GRACE with out sins.

Job 21:25-26 KJV And another dieth in the bitterness of his soul, and never eateth with pleasure. 26 They shall lie down alike in the dust, and the worms shall cover them.

Bitterness makes a person as if you could already see the worms devouring their flesh. It is insidious and affects everyone around them. Retelling , and retelling and retailing the facts of their bitter rantings.

Prov 14:10 KJV   The heart knoweth his own bitterness; and a stranger doth not intermeddle with his joy.
Prov 14:10 NIV   Each heart knows its own bitterness, and no one else can share its joy. 

No one can know the sufferings of another. We think we can, and people judge, but you have no idea what that person has been through. Only GOD knows.

Hezekiah’s words…
Isa 38:15-18 KJV   What shall I say? he hath both spoken unto me, and himself hath done it: I shall go softly all my years in the bitterness of my soul.  16 O Lord, by these things men live, and in all these things is the life of my spirit: so wilt thou recover me, and make me to live. 17 Behold, for peace I had great bitterness: but thou hast in love to my soul delivered it from the pit of corruption: for thou hast cast all my sins behind thy back.  18 For the grave cannot praise thee, death can not celebrate thee: they that go down into the pit cannot hope for thy truth.

Hezekiah was given 15 more years and for this He was truly grateful, yet
The consequences would befall the next generation.

Lam 1:4-5 KJV   The ways of Zion do mourn, because none come to the solemn feasts: all her gates are desolate: her priests sigh, her virgins are afflicted, and she is in bitterness. 5 Her adversaries are the chief, her enemies prosper; for the Lord hath afflicted her for the multitude of her transgressions: her children are gone into captivity before the enemy.

Jeremiah of many in the bible had good reason to become bitter, and he was bitterly disappointed over and over, persecuted, jailed, mocked yet his heart remained tender as he expressed his heart to God. The leaders he prophesied to didn’t listen to him, he couldn’t marry, there were no real comforts the Lord allowed him, save the land he bought later during the siege in Anathoth.  He was married to the LORD and His purposed, and the Lord saved him from bondage in Persia.  He is an excellent example today of keeping your heart free from the things of this world, and soft to the workings of GOD. 

Lam 3:14-24 NKJV   I have become the ridicule of all my people — Their taunting song all the day. 15 He has filled me with bitterness, He has made me drink wormwood.   16  He has also broken my teeth with gravel, and covered me with ashes. 17 You have moved my soul far from peace; I have forgotten prosperity. 18 And I said, "My strength and my hope have perished from the Lord."  19 Remember my affliction and roaming, The wormwood and the gall. 20 My soul still remembers and sinks within me. 21 This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope.  22 Through the Lord's mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. 23 They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness. 24 "The Lord is my portion," says my soul, "Therefore I hope in Him!" 

This is encouraging yourself in the Lord.  Jeremiah had a lot to be bitter about seeing the corruption in his own nation, the idolatry grow and grow, and no repentance, much like our nation today. Yet here is where this beautiful scripture is, “through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.”  Hallelujah !  And GOD made even his enemies to be at peace with him. He did not go into Babylon.

Ezek 3:14 KJV  So the spirit lifted me up, and took me away, and I went in bitterness, in the heat of my spirit; but the hand of the Lord was strong upon me.   

Ezek 27:30-32 NKJV  They will make their voice heard because of you;
They will cry bitterly and cast dust on their heads; They will roll about in ashes;  31 They will shave themselves completely bald because of you,
Gird themselves with sackcloth, And weep for you with bitterness of heart and bitter wailing.  32  In their wailing for you they will take up a lamentation, And lament for you: 'What city is like Tyre, Destroyed in the midst of the sea? 

It seems to me that self pity is one of the companions of bitterness, along with unforgiveness. Poor me, I had to endure all this, feel sorry for me, give me, give me, give me. Woe is me. Give me, give me, give me. It’s all about ME.
The article by Jim Wilson was a great find. All the problems when we have bitterness is in our own hearts. It’s not about the other person, but how we react to the situations we face and have been through.  God clearly indicates in the gospels that unless we forgive we will not be forgiven.  Jesus said 70 X 7 you must forgive that person, 7 being the number of completeness.

Forgiveness is also PROCESS.  Just saying “ I forgive him” is not the end of it.  YOU MUST FORGIVE FROM YOUR HEART, from your emotions, not just your mind in order to ROOT OUT these bitter pains.  I loved the example where he got down on his knees when he knew he had offended his wife and he stayed there till it was all gone.

And so if we find ourselves on REPLAY again and again, then we must also take it back to God and ask Him to help us let go of it and lay it at the cross completely.

This one uses Strongs 4843 but it has very similar meanings…

Zech 12:10-12 KJV And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the Spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.

Imagine the grief when the Jews see the LORD in the air or when just one realizes he has been mocking the Holy One Who came to save them ? Do you remember when you were first saved and how incredulous it was that He could forgive all your sins ?  

In the new testament Peter confronts Simon the sorcerer:

Acts 8:18-24 KJV   And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles' hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money,
19 Saying, Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost.  20 But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money.  21 Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God.  22 Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.  23 For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond of iniquity.

The GALL OF BITTERNESS sure doesn’t sound good does it. Gall is defined as an excrescence of any form produced on any part of a plant by insects or their larvae. They are most commonly caused by small Hymenoptera and Diptera which puncture the bark and lay their eggs in the wounds. The larvae live within the galls.  OOOH. Worms again. The little worm like larvae live in the excrement oozed out by the insect.  That is like bitterness for sure…

The anger lives in the oozings of what comes out of the mouth, and after it accumulates for a time, then it just oozes out all the time from your mouth and defiles everyone with all that buried anger.  Trying to get others to take up “your cause” so to speak, to be bitter with you. Perhaps this is where the saying comes from, “ misery loves company”.

Gall of bitterness in one dictionary says this:
The bitterest grief; extreme affliction. The ancients taught that grief and joy were subject to the gall, affection to the heart, knowledge to the kidneys, anger to the bile (one of the four humours of the body), and courage or timidity to the liver. The gall of bitterness, like the heart of hearts, means the bitter centre of bitterness, as the heart of hearts means the innermost recesses of the heart or affections. In the Acts it is used to signify “the sinfulness of sin,” which leads to the bitterest grief.

It is this very gall of bitterness and iniquity that leads people into witchcraft/rebellion against GOD. It’s not a very big jump when you are already angry and resentful which are already on the tree of rebellion.

In the Greek the word for bitterness is: Pikria

NT:4088 pikri/a pikria (pik-ree'-ah); from NT:4089; acridity (especially poison), literally or figuratively: KJV - bitterness.    
     NT:4089 pikro/$ pikros (pik-ros'); perhaps from NT:4078 (through the idea of piercing); sharp (pungent), i.e. acrid (literally or figuratively): KJV - bitter.  
           NT:4078 ph/gnumi pegnumi (payg'-noo-mee); a prolonged form of a primary verb (which in its simpler form occurs only as an alternate in certain tenses); to fix ("peg"), i.e. (specially) to set up (a tent): KJV - pitch.  [As in tar –sticky.]

To fix was interesting in that when people are bitter they will retell the same facts and anger over and over again like a record that sticks, & it replays over & over again.  They are like stuck in the muddy bitter waters.

Rom 3:10-19 KJV  As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: 11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. 12 They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. 13 Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: 14 Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: 15 Their feet are swift to shed blood: 16 Destruction and misery are in their ways: 17 And the way of peace have they not known: 18 There is no fear of God before their eyes. 19 Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.

Poison we saw in the definitions. Now here we also see, THERE IS NO FEAR of GOD. They have lost it because of anger at Him.  And what follows bitterness is DESTRUCTION and MISERY.  It’s like self fulfilling prophecy. If you keep expecting nothing or worse, more destruction, it will come. Because you are prophesying every time you open your mouth. So if all your focus is on the negative instead of GOD, then destruction will follow you…and it only leads to more and more bitterness, so somehow we have to throw a metal cog in the cycle/wheel of bitterness in order to stop it. And that is to come before the Lord and ask HIM to excavate your heart from any roots of bitterness, and to give you GRACE [ His power ] to FORGIVE whatever offenses are there.

Heb 12:14-17 KJV   Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: 15 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; 16 Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright. 17 For ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears.

So not only must we repent & forgive, but we also must ask forgiveness from the Lord for offending others with our bile strewn all over everyone we complained to, and directly to anyone He shows us we have offended. And there is also the issue of forgiving self.  For if you hold on to that little portion of gall, it will invite the other back.  Let me give you example.  If I suffer from self condemnation for example, and I have, then you also tend to condemn others.  So if you don’t root out the SELF condemnation, you will attract the other spirits that accompany each other in groups as it seems. So forgive everyone and forgive yourself. Sometimes when things are forgotten or hidden then it requires GOD to search your heart, so HE can bring up only that which is yet 
not surrendered to Him.

Now I want to look at the scriptures with the root word bitter to add dimensions of understanding to the causes and manifestations of bitterness.

Ex 1:14 NKJV  And they made their lives bitter with hard bondage — in mortar, in brick, and in all manner of service in the field. All their service in which they made them serve was with rigor. 

Hard bondage makes bitter.  For example, I was a “foster child” to a family. And I was used for a lot of the hard jobs no one else wanted to do. I remember my free time that other children had to play or be with friends, taken up with ironing all the clothes and starched shirts for the family, cleaning the bathrooms, cleaning the basement, cleaning the garage, or working at the news agency after high school, then home and work, work, work.  It was the German work ethic.  So the advantage was I became a good worker but I had lots of resentment towards what felt like a ripped off childhood.  LOTS of RESENTMENT.  That led me into rebellion, anger and bitterness later on.

Then later on when I married late in my adult life, I had to quit work, had three children to care for and homeschool, and did everything related to household duties, no help from hubby, cause he was busy working full time plus a part time job to pay for everything.  But this began to FEEL like before in my childhood, and I built up more resentment.  It had that same feel because I wasn’t healed yet of those wounds, as Mom D. and all the lost childhood. So now I felt like inescapable drudgery.  “A woman’s work is never done” was not a fun comment to me. : ) And I was bitter and no doubt defiled others with my bitterness, till I repented and was more healed.

Ex 15:23-25 NKJV  Now when they came to Marah, they could not drink the waters of Marah, for they were bitter. Therefore the name of it was called Marah.   24 And the people complained against Moses, saying, "What shall we drink?" 25 So he cried out to the Lord, and the Lord showed him a tree. When he cast it into the waters, the waters were made sweet.

The Cross is sweet news to such as I.  It was lifesaving manna/water to me to know I could be forgiven.  As Matthew Henry talks about this later here, he explains that most think the wood thrown in the water represents the cross of Jesus Christ redeeming our bitterness of heart.

They were in the wilderness of Shur – Shur means the idea of going around, or a wall – as in going about a wall. [ blockage ] 

[  From Matthew Henry’s commentary:
II. That at Marah they had water, but it was bitter, so that though they had been three days without water they could not drink it, because it was extremely unpleasant to the taste or was likely to be prejudicial to their health, or was so brackish that it rather increased their thirst than quenched it, v. 23. Note, God can embitter that to us from which we promise ourselves most satisfaction, and often does so in the wilderness of this world, that our wants and disappointments in the creature may drive us to the Creator, in whose favour alone true comfort is to be had. Now in this distress, 
1. The people fretted and quarrelled with Moses, as if he had done ill by them. What shall we drink? is all their clamour, v. 24. Note, The greatest joys and hopes are soon turned into the greatest griefs and fears with those that live by sense only, and not by faith. 
2. Moses prayed: He cried unto the Lord, v. 25. The complaints which they brought to him he brought to God, on whom, notwithstanding his elevation, Moses owned a constant dependence. 

Note, It is the greatest relief of the cares of magistrates and ministers, when those under their charge make them uneasy, that they may have recourse to God by prayer: he is the guide of the church's guides and to him, as the Chief Shepherd, the under-shepherds must upon all occasions apply. 

3. God provided graciously for them. He directed Moses to a tree, which he cast into the waters, in consequence of which, all of a sudden, they were made sweet. 
Some think this wood had a peculiar virtue in it for this purpose, because it is said, God showed him the tree. God is to be acknowledged, not only in the creating of things useful for man, but in discovering their usefulness. Or perhaps this was only a sign, and not at all a means, of the cure, any more than the brazen serpent, or Elisha's casting one cruse full of salt into the waters of Jericho. 

Some make this tree typical of the cross of Christ, which sweetens the bitter waters of affliction to all the faithful, and enables them to rejoice in tribulation. The Jews' tradition is that the wood of this tree was itself bitter, yet it sweetened the waters of Marah; the bitterness of Christ's sufferings and death alters the property of ours. 

4. Upon this occasion, God came upon terms with them, and plainly told them, now that they had got clear of the Egyptians, and had entered into the wilderness, that they were upon their good behaviour, and that according as they carried themselves so it would be well or ill with them: There he made a statute and an ordinance, and settled matters with them. There he proved them, that is, there he put them upon the trial, admitted them as probationers for his favour. In short, he tells them, v. 26, (1.) 
What he expected from them, and that was, in one word, obedience. 

They must diligently hearken to his voice, and give ear to his commandments, that they might know their duty, and not transgress through ignorance; and they must take care in every thing to do that which was right in God's sight, and to keep all his statutes.
 They must not think, now that they were delivered from their bondage in Egypt, that they had no lord over them, but were their own masters; no, therefore they must look upon themselves as God's servants, because he had loosed their bonds, Ps 116:16; Luke 1:74,75. (2.) What they might then expect from him: I will put none of these diseases upon thee, that is, "I will not bring upon thee any of the plagues of Egypt." This intimates that, if they were rebellious and disobedient, the very plagues which they had seen inflicted upon their enemies should be brought upon them; so it is threatened, Deut 28:60. 

God's judgments upon Egypt, as they were mercies to Israel, opening the way to their deliverance, so they were warnings to Israel, and designed to awe them into obedience. Let not the Israelites think, because God had thus highly honoured them in the great things he had done for them, and had proclaimed them to all the world his favourites, that therefore he would connive at their sins and let them do as they would. 

No, God is no respecter of persons; a rebellious Israelite shall fare no better than a rebellious Egyptian; and so they found, to their cost, before the got to Canaan. "But, if thou wilt be obedient, thou shalt be safe and happy;" the threatening is implied only, but the promise is expressed: "I am the Lord that healeth thee, and will take care of thy comfort wherever thou goest." Note, God is the great physician. If we be kept well, it is he that keeps us; if we be made well, it is he that restores us; he is our life, and the length of our days.  ]  end quote

I’d like to propose another thought, and that is God often aligns trees to men, and water to the Holy Spirit, or His Word in our lives. The Word of God cleanses us, and is life to our bones.  Throwing a tree in water can have this meaning, though it was murky water that it was thrown in, so perhaps God is giving an object lesson that the bitterness of their wandering has to alter all the proud bitter attitudes acquired in Egypt. As I relooked at this the Lord showed me the tree in the water had to do with
JESUS being the Tree of Life.  A Sign of Jesus to come. When we eat from the tree of life, then the enemy flees.

If God just suddenly blesses someone who has been rejected all their lives and blesses them to the ultimate, right away, it may lead to their downfall. We see this in Hollywood young stars all the time, nouveau riche, and then end up dead from drugs.  God cannot bless till he eradicates all the bitter attitudes of the past.  So do not press too hard for Him to do so. For He is a loving Father who does what is best for His children

Num 5:18-22 KJV And the priest shall set the woman before the Lord, and uncover the woman's head, and put the offering of memorial in her hands, which is the jealousy offering: and the priest shall have in his hand the bitter water that causeth the curse: 19 And the priest shall charge her by an oath, and say unto the woman, If no man have lain with thee, and if thou hast not gone aside to uncleanness with another instead of thy husband, be thou free from this bitter water that causeth the curse:

20 But if thou hast gone aside to another instead of thy husband, and if thou be defiled, and some man have lain with thee beside thine husband: 21 Then the priest shall charge the woman with an oath of cursing, and the priest shall say unto the woman, The Lord make thee a curse and an oath among thy people, when the Lord doth make thy thigh to rot, and thy belly to swell; 22 And this water that causeth the curse shall go into thy bowels, to make thy belly to swell, and thy thigh to rot: And the woman shall say, Amen, amen.

OH MAN, I do not want the rotten belly !

Deut 32:31-35 KJV   For their rock is not as our Rock, even our enemies themselves being judges. 32 For their vine is of the vine of Sodom, and of the fields of Gomorrah: their grapes are grapes of gall, their clusters are bitter: 33 Their wine is the poison of dragons, and the cruel venom of asps. 34 Is not this laid up in store with me, and sealed up among my treasures? 35 To me belongeth vengeance, and recompence; their foot shall slide in due time: for the day of their calamity is at hand, and the things that shall come upon them make haste.

GOD is the One Who avenges. We are NOT to take it in our own hands, and bitterness is an attempt to do so in words if not actual.  We destroy reputations of others, and we take bitter vengeance through turning others away from those who have hurt us with their words and contempt by talking and retelling and retelling the pains of our attack.

Rom 12:19 NKJV  Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay," says the Lord.

2 Kings 14:26-27 NKJV  For the Lord saw that the affliction of Israel was very bitter; and whether bond or free, there was no helper for Israel. 27 And the Lord did not say that He would blot out the name of Israel from under heaven; but He saved them by the hand of Jeroboam the son of Joash. 

It is GOD Who saves. We cannot save ourselves. There are times we try, and self sufficiency is prominent in America due to her thus far wealth. But those days are soon at an end.  WE must depend on GOD to be our help, and repent from our pride and bitterness.  Pride goes with bitterness because bitterness is saying, I HAVE A RIGHT TO DO WHAT I THINK. We have no rights. We are bought and paid for by the BLOOD OF THE LAMB OF GOD, and our rights are turned over to HIM. We are to only OBEY what HE wants.

I remember this story James Ryle told after his wife was propositioned by another pastor.  He was angry and talking to God and God told him he had a right to NOT FORGIVE, anything he was not guilty of.  Trouble was that when you weigh all our sins.  We have all lied, murdered [ hatred being as murder ] and so there isn’t anything he could say. He had to forgive that affront on his wife and marriage.

God has reminded me of that many times when I have struggled with forgiving others.  Now I’m not saying you have to be best buddy with someone or trust someone who has bludgeoned you. But you MUST be free of unforgiveness and be able to send love to that person. Whether they repent or not is not your responsibility.  Yours is to make your own heart free of any wrath, anger or unforgiveness.

Est 4:1-2 NKJV  When Mordecai learned all that had happened, he tore his clothes and put on sackcloth and ashes, and went out into the midst of the city. He cried out with a loud and bitter cry. 
Mordecai had it right. He cried out to GOD.

Job 3:20-23 NKJV   "Why is light given to him who is in misery, and life to the bitter of soul, 21 Who long for death, but it does not come, and search for it more than hidden treasures; 22 Who rejoice exceedingly, and are glad when they can find the grave? 23 Why is light given to a man whose way is hidden, and whom God has hedged in? 

Bitterness and hardship accompanying it can make you so broken that you wish for death. And yet it doesn’t come. You feel like IF ONLY I COULD go home GOD.  Jeremiah felt that way seeing the destruction of Israel I’m sure, yet he cried out to the Lord in his grief and found his Salvation was close at hand.

Job 13:26 NKJV For you write bitter things against me, And make me inherit the iniquities of my youth. 

This was Job against his accusers.  It doesn’t help broken people to recite to them how they must be a bitter disappointment to GOD. They are already feeling that. Remember it says in Prov 14:20 “Each heart knows its own bitterness”. Now the heart that doesn’t know God may be reached by acknowledging that bitterness, like Paul did to Simon the sorcerer, but we must be careful not to judge lest we fall into the same bitterness we accuse in others.  Judging is to say “ I WOULD NEVER DO THAT” somehow in our heart.  You don’t know what you’d do if you were in those circumstances unless you go through them.  But you can say whatever God shows you to say, and often God will show you the ROOT in prayer for that person, then you can pray HE rout it.

Bitteness and the pride that goes with it is the root of JEZEBELIC patterns of behavior.  So I thought it would be good to review those and am attaching a pdf book of the 21 footprints of jezebel to the email.

Job 23:2-4 NKJV "Even today my complaint is bitter; My hand is listless because of my groaning. 3 Oh, that I knew where I might find Him, that I might come to His seat!  4 I would present my case before Him, and fill my mouth with arguments. 
Job 27:2-4 NKJV  "As God lives, who has taken away my justice, and the Almighty, who has made my soul bitter, 3 As long as my breath is in me, and the breath of God in my nostrils,  4 My lips will not speak wickedness, nor my tongue utter deceit. 
The hardship of Job was more bitter than most of us have endured, but seems short lived compared to the pain and sorrow of a lot of people I know.  I truly it takes MORE FAITH to believe when you aren’t healed immediately than when you are. Job is a prime example of suffering that is IN THE FLESH for Christians today. Indeed it is a bitter pill to swallow with all the immaturity of the church.

Ps 64:2-6 NKJV  Hide me from the secret plots of the wicked, From the rebellion of the workers of iniquity, 3 Who sharpen their tongue like a sword, And bend their bows to shoot their arrows — bitter words, 4 That they may shoot in secret at the blameless; Suddenly they shoot at him and do not fear.  5 They encourage themselves in an evil matter; They talk of laying snares secretly; They say, "Who will see them?" 6 They devise iniquities: "We have perfected a shrewd scheme. "Both the inward thought and the heart of man are deep. 

There is no fear of the Lord in those bitter jezebelic oppressed persons that want to hold on to all the pain, or they will say, I’ve forgiven and reject any offer of inner healing when they are still spewing forth bitter rantings over and over again, defiling all they come in contact with.

There also is the trick of pretending to be not bitter and speaking smooth words to worm their way into your life, then they pounce, just like a big cat, like a leopard. In fact in visions often jezebel is represented by large cats, like mountain lions or leopards, or the oriental jezebelic tiger figure.

Prov 5:3-4 NKJV  For the lips of an immoral woman drip honey, and her mouth is smoother than oil; 4  But in the end she is bitter as wormwood, Sharp as a two-edged sword. 

Bitterness towards gender has a certain characteristic of being alluring, but then withdrawing affections.  The one who’s been trapped feels the fun of engaging in conversation in relationship until there is a snag in the expectations, and the one who seemed so sincere and docile turns livid and bares his or her claws.

Prov 27:7 NKJV  A satisfied soul loathes the honeycomb, but to a hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet. 
This is a mouthful. For the one whose heart is bent on staying tender, will perceive things differently than the bitter of heart. They will understand that all works for the good to those who belong to Him.

Prov 31:6-7 NKJV  Give strong drink to him who is perishing, and wine to those who are bitter of heart. 7 Let him drink and forget his poverty, and remember his misery no more. 
Yea, there is the rub. Often those bitter drown their sorrows in alcohol or drugs, smoking or sex, or spending, eating or not eating.  Addictions abound in those bound by unforgiveness and woundedness.  God is good to the brokenhearted and HE will remove every memory if we just are willing to sit at His feet and bend to HIS WILL.

Eccl 7:26 NKJV And I find more bitter than death the woman whose heart is snares and nets, whose hands are fetters. He who pleases God shall escape from her, but the sinner shall be trapped by her. 
Here is a good application of Ahab and jezebel relationships.  If Ahab had been a good Jewish boy, he would not have married Jezebel. But once he gave in, all hell broke loose and he was ensnared by her.

Isa 5:20-21 NKJV  Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! 21 Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, And prudent in their own sight! 

This is keen discernment, because this is exactly what happens when we get bitter. Our compass gets skewed.  We start giving in to sins that we would never have had we stayed tenderhearted.  Pride takes a hold and it is a terrible evil.  It reminds me of the scripture in James….so I’ll quote it here: 

James 3:13-16 NKJV Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom. 14 But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. 15 This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic. 16 For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there.

Bitterness engenders envy. One is mad that others have it better and if you give into that envy and jealousy, it is a twisting serpent and it distorts everything you see. You will fail to see the goodness of God when it does come toward you unless the Lord delivers.

Jer 2:19 NKJV   Your own wickedness will correct you, and your backslidings will rebuke you. Know therefore and see that it is an evil and bitter thing that you have forsaken the Lord your God, and the fear of Me is not in you," Says the Lord God of hosts. 

And there is the goal of the enemy. To get you bitter so that you will turn on GOD, and bitter people will blurt out things like “ God doesn’t give a d___!” because they are overtaken by that spirit.  Bitterness also invites murder out of the vengeance desired. So any hatred becomes pronounced.

I was sitting at dinner and falling into a trap of allowing negative conversation to go on in when I suddenly blurted out, “ I hope they all die !”  I was shocked/scared when it came out of my mouth and immediately repented, and realized that because I allowed myself to be defiled, that a murderous spirit from that person had tweaked with me having entertained bitterness. 

Then I was truly sorely grieved at that and had to search my heart for any more weaknesses in me and found some resentments still there.  So I spent time in prayer and it was fruitful and I suddenly had to vomit and got delivered by the Lord. Praise His glorious name !  Beautiful JESUS !

Jer 4:17-18 NKJV  Like keepers of a field they are against her all around, Because she has been rebellious against Me," says the Lord. 18 "Your ways and your doings have procured these things for you. This is your wickedness, because it is bitter, Because it reaches to your heart." 
Again we see the relationship of bitterness and rebellion in the heart against GOD.

Jer 31:15 NKJV    Mercy on Ephraim  - Thus says the Lord: "A voice was heard in Ramah, Lamentation and bitter weeping, Rachel weeping for her children, Refusing to be comforted for her children, Because they are no more." 

War, murder, mistreatment, are a terrible grief.  I just watched this film of HAITI where for years they have been putting up with UN troop abuses, where the Brazilian troops went into a part of Port au Prince, and just killed random people who were in opposition to the U.S. installed president and wanted Aristide back. They had been protesting. So the gov’t had them surrounded in that neighborhood by the UN troops, and they were killing unarmed citizens.  You could see the bitter grief and anger in their faces. There is so much healing needed in the world and in the church, that our focus needs to always be on JESUS so we can be part of the healing instead of heaping more hurt on others.

[The Chaldeans are Iraqi’s: and in this scripture could represent the muslim people arrayed against the world ]
Hab 1:6-10 NKJV  For indeed I am raising up the Chaldeans, a bitter and hasty nation which marches through the breadth of the earth, To possess dwelling places that are not theirs. 7 They are terrible and dreadful; Their judgment and their dignity proceed from themselves. 8 Their horses also are swifter than leopards, and more fierce than evening wolves. Their chargers charge ahead; Their cavalry comes from afar; They fly as the eagle that hastens to eat.  9 "They all come for violence; Their faces are set like the east wind. They gather captives like sand. 10 They scoff at kings, and princes are scorned by them. They deride every stronghold, for they heap up earthen mounds and seize it. 

[ Note how this mirrors the Joel army scriptures, terrible and dreadful being used ]  God has warned us over and over that we are about to enter into a season of persecution as never known before in America, and perilous times.  Our hearts will see things we have no desire to see.  And our hearts will be broken for what we see happening in the world. We MUST be free of any bitterness NOW to be able to keep our sanity, and to stay in a secret place with the LORD in order to be of use at all to HIS KINGDOM.

Zeph 1:14-18 The great day of the Lord is near; It is near and hastens quickly. The noise of the day of the Lord is bitter; There the mighty men shall cry out. 15 That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of devastation and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, A day of clouds and thick darkness, 16 a day of trumpet and alarm against the fortified cities and against the high towers. 
17 "I will bring distress upon men, and they shall walk like blind men, Because they have sinned against the Lord; Their blood shall be poured out like dust, and their flesh like refuse." 18 Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the Lord's wrath; But the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of His jealousy, for He will make speedy riddance of all those who dwell in the land. 

Col 3:19 NKJV  Husbands, love your wives and do not be bitter toward them. 
This is certainly a warning not only for husbands but also wives. We must learn to love one another and subdue our flesh.  It will not go well with us unless we give up our RIGHTS to eye for an eye and tooth for a tooth. When there is bitterness of heart, there is also CONTROL.  When both are bitter trying to control one another out of pride and fear, it creates a mess.  Bitterness is at the root of many of the problems in marriages. We need to submit ourselves to the LORD for healing if we want our marriages to survive and be healthy and whole.

James 3:11-12 NKJV  Does a spring send forth fresh water and bitter from the same opening? 12 Can a fig tree, my brethren, bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Thus no spring yields both salt water and fresh.  
Like Jim Wilson expressed in the article I sent out and putting below this one…both cannot proceed from the same person. If there is bitter, then it must be extricated.  The Lord told  me last year I think it was that if people don’t repent, they will go insane in the days ahead as it will be too much for them to bear.

So let’s overview the Key characteristics of bitterness…
1 Unforgiveness. 
2 Resentment  - just hearing another person’s name makes hair stand on end.
3 Obsessive thoughts of revenge
4 Sarcasm
5 Critical or unkind comments
6 Self righteousness
7 Constant reliving of wrongs
8 Retelling information over and over about others faults
9 Conflicts with others
10     Hostility – bite back quickly
11     Aggressiveness in relationships
12Controlling behavior [ witchcraft control ]
15Envy or jealousy of how others are doing better
18Grief over past hurts that keeps on over months and years
19Lack of repentance
20Lack of thankfulness
21Lack of joy for the blessings others get
22Inability to grieve for others

Father, Deliver us from all the bitter places in our hearts that our hearts may be pure and soft to the leading of the Holy Spirit, and open to Your great love, mercy and forgiveness.  Bring to my attention any area in my heart that is polluted from unforgiveness and help me to forgive everyone who ever hurt me, from my heart, and not just my mind or will Lord, but that I could truly love them as YOU love them.
In the name and blood of Jesus, AMEN !