86 thoughts on “Preaching on Bitterness”

  1. @Dan – Well, it is sin (Eph 4:31-32), and it doth eat like a canker (verse out of context, but bitterness does eat you up). Bitterness isn’t good.

    But, the problem is that the IFB’s preach against what they call bitterness in order to keep folks in line, and lining up for the altar to repent of that evil thought they had such as “why does this pastor never preach about the love and pure grace of our Lord Jesus”. Instead of leaving the church, they conclude they are bitter at the pastor or the church and “get right with God” again, apologising profusely to God for using their God given ability to discern error 🙁

  2. Ha. You have to get the fact that he was replaced as president of ABC by the guy sitting on the front row. So, apparently, he’s “dealt with” his bitterness.

    I do feel bad that he lost his sister. That doesn’t give him the right to make such brash statements as, “[Bitterness] is far more serious [than cancer].” Where did this come from?

  3. I see he’s preaching on the topical shotgun approach. If bitterness wasn’t your problem, then “worldliness” must be. Not sure how the two were linked, though. However, I couldn’t make it all the way through.

  4. Why do fundy preachers always talk about women letting themselves go? If a woman is mentioned in a sermon it’s usually about how she “let her self go”.

  5. There it is…”I wonder if I followed you around…”
    Step #1 in prepping the audience for a guilt trip. Also first step in taking one’s eyes off of Christ and getting them on one’s personal performance. This is the unspoken, “What have you done to be worthy of God’s love for you today? this week? this summer?

    “Are you living with a passion….”
    Step #2 re enforce the laundry list of the “ta do’s” Preacher’s choice of what “ta do’s” to list
    (ummmm that Southwestern Chili sound’s pretty good right now… Just sayin)

    Grin again gang, get gung-ho about Jesus
    Smile sweetly sister so send Satan sadly away
    Blessed are the brothers who can take a bunch of bitter boys and make a bunch of better boys with big big smiles,
    Grin again gang get gung-ho about Jesus….

    Sorry it just came out…

    … back to the commentary… well if mom and dad wait until the children are teens and then they find fundyism and try and use it to right a lifetime of wrongs all at once.. I can see why the kids would be bitter. Outta the blue …*sproing*…. “oh by the way we are going to have all these rules now and you’d better obey…” duh????

    “plunge everthing under the blood” either this is a veiled attempt to talk about keeping “short accounts” so that you are on good terms with God at all times….(performance Christianity) or this guy is “Team Edward.”
    (the sin in that statement is that I know what “Team Edward” means**shudder**)

    *Classic* Husbands get bitter at ther wives for not keeping themselves up! Did he just say that?? Yes he did! Appearance makes husbands bitter…. (what was unsaid fairly screamed out at this point…”Women if you don’t keep yourselves up then don’t blame your husband when he finds something that looks like you once did…”)

    Of course the women get bitter at the husbands because they are so involved following one another around keeping tabs on who is praying, passing out tracts and on visitation…

    “I seen people get bitter

  6. oops bitter at the pastor…. It shouldn’t happen….???? The pastor had a superior vantage point???? There it is in a nutshell… the preachers and the pastors are superior….

    There it is. The fundy caste system….

  7. “Why do fundy preachers always talk about women letting themselves go? If a woman is mentioned in a sermon it’s usually about how she “let her self go”.”

    Because fundy women tend to let themselves go. It’s a pandemic. Most are pasty, most are frumpy, most dress like its 1979.*

    *Most, not all.

  8. Hebrews speaks of “the root of bitterness”…not just a fundie pastor, but any pastor ..ever try to put yourself in his shoes? I can understand why some would get bitter towards pastors, but I can understand why pastors would get bitter also. Some times preachers can’t win with people…however bitterness is a sin regardless of who you are.

  9. “Because fundy women tend to let themselves go. It’s a pandemic. Most are pasty, most are frumpy, most dress like its 1979.* Most, not all.”

    Do you think maybe subconsciously all the negativity just gets to them and they give up? No one is EVER good enough; no one is EVER accepted; you and your kids must be perfect – those attitudes rip the life out of you and leave you discouraged. (Not that they’d admit this.)

    I found a weird double standard in many churches. Women were accused of being proud or worldly if they spent time doing their make-up or hair, but at the same time women were encouraged to be feminine and to stay attractive for their husbands and “not let themselves go.” But when you act feminine, you’re criticized for focusing on the body not the spirit. You can’t win. So you put on your sneakers and your jean jumpers and shlump through the rest of your days. (Again, not talking about every fundy women – just some. And often it was me.)

  10. @Trex: Look at Hebrews 12:12-15. Then look at Duet29:18. Then back at Hebrews 12:15. Remove gaul andfrom Duet29:18. Look familiar. What do you think Duet 29:18 is talking about? Now what do you think Heb12:15 is talking about?

  11. I used to listen to this guy all the time! Ever notice how cookie-cutter the preaching style is of ABC grads? They all seem to sound exactly like Ron Comfort…

  12. Oh my goodness- I couldn’t read the whole thing, but I think he should’ve done his own research about Calvinism from the horse’s mouth instead of citing from other fundies. For example, when defining Unconditional Election, he cited Calvin saying that babies become “elect” when they are baptized. I am sure he did not say that, so when I looked at the footnote, not only does he admit that he grabbed the quote from Dave Hunt’s book, but the reference itself does not exist. Book IV only has 20 chapters, there’s no 25. I think he should’ve done his homework.

    PS. He misspelled “irresistible”

  13. I listened to the whole thing and wish I wouldn’t have. Man, it brought back all the guilty feelings about never doing enough for God and never being right with Him because I was “bitter” about something.

    I was so ticked when he mentioned the whole thing about men being bitter at their wives because of their letting themselves go. @Pastor’s wife summed up the problem with that quite well.

  14. “Ambassador, as in, Lattimore, North Carolina? One of their college reps said to my brother’s high school class–with a straight face–that Jesus used the King James.”
    Holy crap! I almost spit water on my keyboard! LOL

  15. One of their college reps said to my brother’s high school class–with a straight face–that Jesus used the King James.

    What?!?!? Are you saying that Jesus wasn’t a white, 17th century English speaking, middle class Republican?!?!? Liberal!

  16. If I had a nickel for every time I was told I am bitter in fundyism, or even now by certain fundy family members, I would be very rich. Now I just laugh at them. If they keep it up I remind them they are not the Holy Spirit in my life and to worry about what the Holy Spirit convicts them of, and let the Holy Spirit worry about me. That usually get’s them to hush and give me that old fundy glazed over look. 😉

    btw, no one outside of fundyism has ever said that to/about me. Not my current church or any of my former employers or fellow employees.

  17. Phil, fair enough on Heb 12, but Eph 4 stands true and I stand by my post…BTW do fudies have double standards? (question not directed to Phil necessarily) yes many do…do many who post here have double standards for themselves and those they “line” up with ? uh yes.

  18. @Mikew and @pastorswife

    How do they have time to keep themselves up? They’ve got to pop out a lot of kids and homeschool all of them, cook, clean, sew, knit,and be at every church function where they’re nearly constantly berated on the many many evils of their sex. I’m sure they are way too exhausted to even try to exercise.

  19. @John–It’s probably Southwestern Chili because we all know the heat of the chili produces endorphins, giving a feeling of…well, pleasure, well-being, happiness…and we all know those are not acceptable in fundy circles. Clam chowder and vegetable soup just don’t do the same. But you’ve got to watch those French Onion people.

  20. @trex; I think the big deal that this post is trying to make is the status bitterness is given and the frequency its talked about. Paul lists biterness among other things to put away. The only command not to be bitter is (as far as I know) is Col3:9. In James 3:14 its desribing the envying and strife as bitter.

  21. @Darrell: How do you plunge your hurt beneath the blood? You know. You just take it and just plunge it on in there so it can desolve away. Seriously I don’t know. Thats probably one of many ill phrased/just wierd exhortations that’s come from a preacher’s mouth.

  22. When he got to talking about cancer, I thought “this can’t possibly be going anywhere good”.

    When he got around to saying bitterness was “worse than cancer”, was when I clicked “stop”.

    Horrible guilt laced sermons aren’t “as bad as cancer”, but they certainly shouldn’t be preached or listened to.

  23. Why are fundies always preaching against the bitterness in others? Because they’re full of it themselves! (Yes, I know–“full of it.”) Fundy Dude, with whom I work, sits there all day staring at whatever (or whomever) and never has anything nice to say, never says anything that isn’t doom and gloom, only comes close to laughing when he says something that shows how he’s “in” and the rest of “the world” is “out.” What kind of nut is bitter? Definitely a fundy nut.

  24. @Mikew and @pastorswife
    My wife and I were frequently criticized while we were involved in fundy ministry for “wasting God’s money” on gym memberships. They weren’t like usual gym memberships, we actually used them regularly. We like to eat right and exercise.
    My wife learned early on not to mention that she went to the gym or she would have to face the fundy inquisition about what she wore while she was there.

    My wife was told on our wedding day that she should expect to add 5-10 lbs every year she was married. I was wondering why she was bummed out during the reception!

    It seems that most if not all fundy preachers have very little room to talk about people letting themselves go. There is probably a double-standard at play though. The wife can’t do it but the husband can.

  25. This guy did a “revival” at the fundy church I attended in highschool…he was young back then! My sister was a young teen at the time who ADORED Billy Graham…so when Brother Dwight preached against him, she wrote him a letter explaining why he was wrong to preach against Rev. Graham! I proofread it for her at the time…but laugh now thinking of the futility of convincing a fundy evangelist that Billy Graham is okay! 🙂

  26. Great comments.
    I summarize it this way: I am a victim of some one else’s sin, therefore I become bitter.
    The focus has again become the evil victim instead of the source of victim’s condition. That’s really logical.
    I find it interesting that he brings up passion for God. I did not leave fundyland because I was bitter; I left due to a passion for God. I suspect many ManOGawd types confuse passion for God manifested in this manner with bitterness.

  27. @Phil – that song is awesome! so is the album cover – I can only envision it being sung on Flight of the Concords though not in a Fundamentalist Church. Albeit if there was an event at church that would entice me to go it would be this guys concert. I wonder if he has a little german costume and could resemble a garden gnome? Oh nm….i would be shunned for my thunderous applause.

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