The last study was on roots and fruit. This is a study on “What is the root cause of the fruit that is in my life?” Example: Why do people constantly stay in financial struggles, other than just not managing their money well. Some go from one bad relationship to another; some make bad decisions; some seem to be sick all the time; some go from job to job. All these things and many more have a root cause.
What if I told you there is a root cause for all root causes? The bitterroot is much more than just being bitter and unforgiving. The fruit of a bitter root can be many different fruits; addiction, pornography, lust, immorality, anger, unforgiveness, resentment, hate, envy, and jealousy. These are all the fruit from bitterness that can show up in a persons life.
Hebrews 12:14 – Pursue peace with all men, and holiness without which no one will see the Lord; (Verse 15) lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled; (Verse 16) lest there be any fornicator or profane person like Esau, who for one morsel of food sold his birthright.
Bitter Roots Deceive
Bitter roots cause deception. People let bitterness blind them and can’t see clearly when they have a bitter root.
2 Corinthians 11:3 – But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
Paul goes back to the original sin with Adam and Eve and says he fears the same thing is going to happen to us. Deception has a little bit of truth in it. The serpent said, “God knows the day you eat…” God had already told them the “day you eat” there will be consequences. So that part of what Satan said was true. Then Satan told them, “The day you eat your eyes will be opened.” And that happened after they ate. However, their eyes opened to something God never intended for their eyes to be opened to and that was fear and shame!
Then the serpent tells them, “and then you’ll be like Him.” The sad part about that lie was they were already like Him, made in His image. Satan was basically telling them, “If you do this you will have something you don’t now have.”
But as a believer, we have already been given all things that pertain to life and godliness. And God has already blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.
Then the serpent says, “knowing good and evil.” Adam and Eve already knew “good” because they talked and walked with God every day and had everything they could ever want. God didn’t want Adam and Eve to know evil.
So what was behind the lie that Satan told them? God wasn’t holding out on them. Satan’s main objective was to get Eve bitter toward God. Why? The original sin is not from Adam and Eve. The original sin was from Lucifer. He is the author of all sin. The original sin was bitterness toward God!
When we read Isaiah 14, it talks about how Lucifer fell. He wanted to be like God. He felt God was holding out on him by taking all the glory of heavens worship and Satan wanted some of that glory and developed a root of bitterness. If you remember, Satan leads worship in heaven.
All sin goes back to a root of bitterness toward God. For instance: If a person falls into immorality, they think that something better is out there somewhere other than what God has for them and they become bitter, thinking God is not giving them all they deserve.
In this passage of Hebrews we just read, we see three times the word “lest.” The first time: Hebrews 12:15 – lest anyone fall short of the grace of God.” There are two ways we fall short of the grace of God: One is lasciviousness and the other is legalism. Lasciviousness means evil and evil sexual desires.
People think they can live any way they want and there will be no consequences. For a believer, that’s trodding underfoot the blood of “Christ. Hebrews 12:14 – Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord. We know we receive holiness through grace through faith, but we are to also “walk ” holy!
The other way we fall short of the grace of God is legalism. Trying to earn our relationship with God through good works. These are both extremes in the body of Christ.
Bitter Roots Defile
Hebrews 12:15 – lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled;
Defiled in the Greek means “stained,” “to dye” with another color. Sin stains us. However, the blood of Jesus cleanses every stain.
Now in Hebrews 12:16, we read about Esau, most think it is about when Jacob was pretending to be Esau when deceiving Isaac, but it’s not. (Verse 16) lest there be any fornicator or profane person like Esau, who for one morsel of food sold his birthright.
This verse is actually referring to this: Genesis 25:29 – Now Jacob cooked a stew, and Esau came in from the field, and he was weary. (Verse 30) And Esau said to Jacob, “Please feed me with that same red stew, for I am weary. Therefore his name was called Edom. (Verse 31) But Jacob said, “Sell me your birthright as of this day.” (Verse 32) And Esau said, “Look, I am about to die; so what profit shall this birthright be to me?” (Verse 33) Then Jacob said, “Swear to me as of this day.” So he swore to him and sold his birthright to Jacob. (Verse 34) And Jacob gave Esau bread and stew of lentils; then ate and drank, arose and went his way. Thus Esau despised his birthright.
Esau gave up his birthright because he didn’t value it. His birthright was twice the inheritance of his brother’s because he was the firstborn. This caused a root of bitterness between the two brothers. Later on, Esau is continually trying to get back at his father, developing resentment. Any time Esau saw that Jacob would do something to please his father, Esau would do the opposite.
How many people do things out of spite, bitterness, and resentment, but it is detrimental to them? How many people have a deep root of bitterness towards others but it’s really against God because God didn’t help them? So many will ask, “Why didn’t God stop this from happening to me?” They become bitter and many times take their bitterness out on those around them but are really bitter toward God because He could have prevented them from going through a terrible time.
Is it hard to watch a person that does you wrong and they are blessed by God? That’s exactly what happened with Jacob and Esau. God blessed Jacob after he deceived his father by pretending to be Esau.
However, did not God bless Esau also? God’s a merciful God and has blessed us even when we’ve have done wrong. The Bible says God blesses whom He chooses!
People get angry and bitter toward God because they know God is “sovereign” and He could stop any tragedy He chooses. That is not what the word “sovereign” means. Sovereign doesn’t mean that God can do anything He wants to do. It means that God is the Supreme Ruler of the universe, but God can never act outside of His character! And because God didn’t want robots, He gave us all a free will and we are the ones that mess things up. Because there is sin in the world there is now death and sickness in the world.
Things happen in our lives because we live in a fallen world and if we’re not careful that line of thinking will cause a root of bitterness toward God! Sin brings all manner of evil (Romans 7:8).
When life becomes “bitter,” just like Moses placing a tree in the bitter water to make it drinkable, if we put Jesus in the middle of that bitterness He will make our lives sweet!
Bitter Roots Depress
Bitterness just might be the number one cause for depression. Hebrews 12:17 – For you know that afterward when he (Esau) wanted to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no place for repentance, though he sought it diligently with tears.
Any time a person lets a root of bitterness or resentment take hold in their lives, all they can focus on is themselves. It becomes all about how others treat “them”; what is not being done for “them”; why hasn’t God blessed me like He blesses them?
Isaiah 26:3 – Thou will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.
Everyone at some time in their lives will taste bitterness, but we have a choice whether to drink it or not!