Devotional
DEALING WITH MALICE

DEALING WITH MALICE

“Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking,”

‭I Peter‬2:1

Anger is a strong feeling of displeasure or hostility towards another person. It can happen when
our will is crossed by people or circumstances, and we choose to respond by being annoyed and
malicious towards them. Ultimately, self-life is at the root of these sins.

Malice is the intention or desire to do evil. It is the desire to inflict injury, harm, or suffering on
someone else. Malice is a sin and it’s a big contributor to fighting and murder. A good example of
malice was the first murder ever recorded. Cain killed his brother Abel because of jealousy and
that jealousy created malice.

Malice comes from the heart and Christians must avoid it by walking by the Spirit and putting on
the full armour of God. You must go to war with every malicious thought.

Never dwell on it, but ask God for help immediately. How do you fight it you ask? Get alone with
God and wrestle with God in prayer! Make sure you are forgiving others daily and make sure you
put the past behind you. Malice will hinder your spiritual growth.

Anything in your life that could be contributing to malice must be removed. It could be secular
music, TV, bad influences, etc. You must think of and surround yourself with godly and righteous
things. You must have the (Holy Spirit).

Prior to Paul’s writing in Ephesians 4:32, he had also written in the verse before it to “let all
bitterness and wrath and anger and clamour and slander be put away from you, along with all
malice.” Paul was giving us his advice to stay away from bitterness before it gets a hold on our
personality.

Forgiveness is the key point in letting go of anger, hurt, sadness and disappointment. Colossians
3:13 tells us, “Bear with one another, and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each
other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you must also forgive.”

Romans 12:19 adds these words for our benefit; “Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it
to the wrath of God, for it is written, ‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.’”

In other words, take to heart the popular phrase, “Let go and let God,” whenever you are hurt
and sad and angry and want so badly to hurt the one who hurt you. God will repay. It is not up to
us to repay. It is up to us to forgive, so we can live lives of peace and contentment and
happiness. For how can a person feel comforted if holding onto negative emotions of revenge?
There are two other Scriptures that show us a better way.

Psalm 37:8 advises us, “Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath! Fret not yourself, it tends only to
evil.”

Back to Paul’s letter to the Ephesians 4:2, we read, “With all humility and gentleness, with
patience, bear with one another in love.”

In other words, when we are hurt or disappointed in life, try to see it from the other person’s
point of view. Oftentimes, we find that the other person did not mean to harm us. Be
empathetic.

Everyone has hurt, feels anger and is disappointed. That is why the New Testament writers tell
us over and over to let them go, to forgive one another. Dwelling on hurtful emotions only serves
to affect us in harmful ways.

The Bible helps us to stay away from the development of bitterness by encouraging us to forgive
and love one another. In this way, we let go of disappointments and look to God who is
completely trustworthy to help us live a good life with positive emotions.

If we do not forgive, we are only hurting ourselves. Bypassing forgiveness leads us to hold
onto grudges, which can so easily develop into a life of bitterness. Bitterness has been linked to
physical disharmony in both mind and body.

It also becomes easier over time to get rid of bitterness by understanding some of the important
realities linked to life — don’t take everything personally, everything is not always about you,
most of the time people are not out to get you, understand where the other person is coming
from, and finally, remember to “let go and let God.”

FURTHER READING: Hebrews 12:15
CONFESSION: Today, I let go of all the bitterness in my life and I live a life of forgiveness.

THERE IS LOVE IN SHARING