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Recently it has been announced, not as a survey but as an official statistic, that one out of every six people has mental problems. Many believers have mental problems because they have rejected the plan of God and are controlled by what they observe in the cosmic system [world viewpoint].  Mental attitude sins hinder the believer from taking advantage of the equal privilege and equal opportunity that God has given to execute the spiritual life.  Mental attitude is so important because that is where proper motivation is developed.

Definition and Description

Most of the believer’s sinning is done in the mental attitude. These mental attitude sins include arrogance, pride, jealousy, implacability, bitterness, vindictiveness, inordinate ambition and inordinate competition, all motivational sins, and sinful thoughts such as fear, guilt, worry, anger, judging, hatred, even murder.

The Hebrew verb shaga means to be insane, to be psychotic. As DEU 28:341 says to those believers who are negative, And you shall be driven mad by the sight of what you see.  The Hebrew noun shigaon, or a deceived mental attitude, was originally used by Moses to describe the Exodus generation. Shigaon took over the lives of these Jewish believers, the psychotic generation. DEU 28:28 uses shigaon when it says to those believers who are negative toward doctrine, The Lord will afflict you with [shigaon] madness and with blindness [blackout of the soul] and with confusion of heart [split personality].  The noun and verb are used to describe what happened to Israel when they went negative to doctrine. The inside pressure of stress in the soul combined with the functions of the sin nature to destroy the spiritual life of these believers in the face of the greatest Bible teaching ever to exist in the Old Testament.  Moses observed this and warned future generations of Israel.


  1. Arrogance
    2.  Pride
    3.  Jealousy
    4.  Implacability
  2. Bitterness
  3. Vindictiveness
  4. Inordinate Ambition/Inordinate Competition
    8.   Fear
    9.   Guilt
    10.  Worry
    11.  Anger
    12.  Judging
    13.  Hatred
    14.  Murder
  5. Arrogance:  The antithesis of grace, arrogance is total blindness to the grace of God.  It is synonymous with vanity, which is empty pride in regard to one's person, attainments, or possessions coupled with an excessive desire to be noticed, a lust for attention, lust for approval or praise from others. Arrogance deceives its victim, JER 49:16, As for the terror of you, the arrogance of your heart has deceived you...; brings dishonor in your life, PRO 11:2, When arrogance comes, then comes dishonor.”  and causes self-destruction, PRO 16:18, Arrogance precedes destruction, and before a fall there is a lifestyle of arrogance.
  6.  Pride: The worst sin, pride involves inordinate self-esteem, conceit and a pre-occupation with self and rejection of authority.  Arrogance, pride, and conceit are the original sins of the greatest genius creature of all time.  We call him Satan or the devil but his original name was son of the morning, Heylel.  He was the first creature to enter into this sin of pride, motivating him to rebel.  Pride is the original sin found in the fallen angels in the pre-historic angelic conflict and motivated the fallen angels to rebel as well.  Pride motivated the woman in the garden to sin.

PRO 8:13  The respect for the Lord is to hate evil; pride and arrogance and the evil way, and the perverted mouth, I hate.

PRO 16:5  Everyone who is proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord; assuredly, he will not be unpunished.

  1. Jealousy:  A very serious mental attitude sin, jealousy causes a self-destructive mental attitude involving a system of thinking from the kosmos [the world system].  Jealousy, which includes pride and arrogance, is the strongest of all the mental attitude sins and is the other side of the coin from pride, which is the worst sin.

JAM 3:14  But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your right lobes, do not be arrogant and lie against the truth.

Jealousy is older than the human race, existing in eternity past when Lucifer, the son of the morning, became jealous of God.  Jealousy surfaced in the human race when Cain became jealous of his brother, Abel.  This motivated Cain to murder Abel.

Scripture describes jealousy as:

  • Cruel, SOS 8:6, …Jealousy is as severe as Sheol; its flashes are flashes of fire, the very flame of the LORD.
  • Filled with anger and revenge, PRO 6:34, For jealousy enrages a man, and he will not spare in the day of vengeance.
  • Frustrating, Pro 27: 3‑4, A stone is heavy and the sand weighty, but the provocation of a fool is heavier than both of them.  Wrath is fierce and anger is a flood, but who can stand before jealousy?
  • A form of wisdom, JAM 3:15, This wisdom is not that which comes down from above, but is earthly, natural, demonic.
  • Always creating instability and disorder in the life of the believer, JAM 3:16,  For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist there is disorder and every evil thing.
  • Self‑destructive, JOB 5:2, For anger slays the foolish man and jealousy kills the simple..
  • Affecting your health, PRO 14:30, A tranquil heart is life to the body, but jealousy is rottenness to the bones.

Jealousy is so strong that carrying a log across your shoulders while carrying a boulder under your arms is nothing compared to the burden of putting up with a fool as in PRO 27:3, A stone is heavy and the sand weighty, but the provocation of a fool is heavier than both of them.  The "stone" in this passage is overt jealousy and anger; the "sand" is subtle jealousy.

PRO 27:4, Wrath is fierce; and anger is a flood; but who can stand before jealousy."
So great was the sin of jealousy in Israel that a special offering was made for it (NUM 5:11‑31).  It is very difficult for the believer to get over jealousy.  Jealousy invariably is a symptom of neurotic insecurity.  However, with rebound and application of doctrine and resumption in the predesigned plan of God, the believer can be immediately back on the road to recovery.  Only the believer himself can allow another person to make him jealous.

  1.  Implacability:  Characterized by one who is impossible to please or satisfy.  This takes root in the mental attitude of the soul where the person has no appreciation for life.  Hell has an insatiable appetite, and lust just never quits.

PRO 27:20  Death and hell are never satisfied, Nor are the eyes of an implacable person ever satisfied.

The growing believer’s life should be overflowing with appreciation, especially appreciation for all that God has done for him.  Many Christians yearn for more “things” yet do not appreciate what they already possess.  They are so caught up in their destination that they forget to enjoy the journey; and, above all, do not have gratitude for the graciousness and the love of people that they meet along the way.  It is futile for the believer to crave more things in life if he cannot enjoy and appreciate what he has in the present.  It would be better to appreciate things that one cannot have than to have things that one is not able to appreciate.  The apostle Paul says one of the signs of the last days is the fact that people would be ungrateful.

2TI 3:2  For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy.

Implacable people refuse to appreciate.  Appreciation of life itself, becoming suddenly aware of the miracle of being alive, on this planet, can turn what we call ordinary life into a miracle.

  1.  Bitterness:  Manifested in every believer who does not have a personal relationship with God.   They eventually become a walking bombshell ready to explode at any moment and the trigger or the button which is pushed is the sin of bitterness.  The believer who allows bitterness to cause the explosion, either inwardly or overtly, hurts his own life.  This is called self-induced misery.  Harboring bitterness produces a very serious spiritual problem, a problem which is not correctable apart from personal love for God and impersonal unconditional love for all mankind. Bitter people are caustic or sarcastic.  They have shigaion, pain in the mind.  Bitterness is severity of temper, biting sarcasm, a painful inward affliction, and a deep distress of mind that defiles others as well as self. DEU 28:34 says to those believers who are negative, You shall be driven mad [again shigaon] by the sight of what you see.

HEB 12:15  See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled.

Being rejected is a strong reason for bitterness in the lives of most believers especially in marriage according to COL 3:19, Husbands, love your wives, and do not be embittered against them.

Bitterness lives and resides in the mind, PRO 14:10, The heart [mind, right lobe] knows its own bitterness, and a stranger does not share its joy.

Bitterness in believers is so obvious that even strangers avoid them. Why? Because bitterness produces a complaining attitude.  Complaining is simply an outward effect of an inward sin. The person who shuns the bitter moments of friends will be an outsider at their celebrations.

JOB 7:11  “Therefore, I will not restrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit, I will complain in the bitterness of my soul.”

JOB 10:1  “I loathe my own life; I will give full vent to my complaint; I will speak in the bitterness of my soul.”

Bitterness produces misery, PSA 73:21-22, When my heart was filled with bitterness, and I was pierced within, then I was senseless and ignorant; I was like an animal before you, thus the phrase, "those people are like animals."

Most of you have heard the phrase, "Hell hath no fury like a woman's scorn."  David taught his son Solomon the same thing when he said in PRO 5:3-4, For the lips of an adulteress drip honey, and smoother than oil is her speech; but in the end she is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a two‑edged sword.

Later on Solomon would write, ECC 7:26, And I discovered more bitter than death the woman whose heart is snares and nets, whose hands are chains. One who is pleasing to God will escape from her, but the sinner will be captured by her.

  1.  Vindictiveness: Vindictiveness enters into the believer’s modus operandi as retaliation for wrongs, real or imagined.  In this carnal state, the believer becomes obsessed with seeking revenge, resulting in the desire to hurt, to be spiteful, and to try to inflict suffering or punishment as retribution for this real or imagined evil or injury.  This type of person is ugly to be around because even his countenance testifies against him.  One writer states, in the sex war, thoughtlessness is the weapon of the male, vindictiveness of the female.

Vindictiveness is also accompanied by jealousy, PRO 6:34, For jealousy enrages a man, and he will not spare in the day of vengeance.

In fellowship, the believer can leave the problem in the high court of heaven as in HEB 10:30, For we know Him who said, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay." And again, "The Lord will judge His people."


  1.  Inordinate ambition and inordinate competition:  Inordinate ambition and inordinate competition is also a mental attitude sin.  Ambition and competition in life is legitimate.  However, when the believer becomes obsessed with competing and comparing self with others it becomes sin.

2CO 10:12  For we are not bold to class or compare ourselves with some of those who commend themselves; but when they measure themselves by themselves, and compare themselves with themselves, they are without understanding.  The same verse in the Living Bible says, Their trouble is that they are only comparing themselves with each other and measuring themselves against their own little ideas. What stupidity!

We are told that it is the motives that the Lord weighs in PRO 16:2, All the ways of a man are clean in his own sight, But the Lord weighs the motives.  1CO 4:5, Therefore do not go on passing judgment before the time, {but wait} until the Lord comes who will both bring to light the things hidden in the darkness and disclose the motives of {men's} hearts; and then each man's praise will come to him from God.

The apostle Paul even tells us that if we do something great but with the wrong motives it absolutely useless in 1CO 15:32.  In 1CO 15:32 he said, "If from human motives I fought with wild beasts at Ephesus, what does it profit me?”

We are even warned about pastors or men in the position of pastors who do not have the gift.  Paul says in PHI 1:17, "The former proclaim Christ out of selfish ambition, rather than from pure motives, thinking to cause me distress in my imprisonment.  You can be a teacher of the Bible and have wrong motives!

  1.  Fear:  A whole system of sins, fear includes worry, anxiety, insecurity, incapability of doctrinal application, and therefore inability to use the problem solving devices.  Fear is an emotional sin and it torments the lives of others.

1JO 4:18  There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love.

For the believer who lives in a state of fear, the fear increases like a disease.  As the cancer of fear increases, that individual becomes intimidated by life.

  1.  Guilt:  Guilt can be a devastating thing if it's not handled properly.  Satan accuses God's people to try to make them feel guilty so that they hide from God and separate themselves from Him.

REV 12:10  Then I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, "Now the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, he who accuses them before our God day and night.

GEN 3:7-10  Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loin coverings.  They heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden.  Then the LORD God called to the man, and said to him, "Where are you?"  He said, "I heard the sound of You in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid myself."

In the Christian life all have failed in some facet of life and must move on with the spiritual life through rebound.  The believer cannot be distracted by past failures, except to learn from them, not to blame others for them.  The spiritual life instructs the believer to forget the past and move toward the high ground of spiritual maturity.  Past failures must never become present handicaps.  All believers must learn how to handle their past including that great villain called guilt.  The essential element for living in freedom from guilt is understanding grace.  If the believer does not realize that God's justice and righteousness are completely satisfied and that his relationship with Him is based upon the accomplishments of the cross, then guilt will torment him until it drives him from the presence of the Lord.

  1.  Worry:  Worry is soulish torment or anxiety regarding anything in life.  It is a disquieting and painful state of mind involving undue concern over something in life.  Worried people anticipate the worst, and so worry becomes apprehension or anticipation of danger, misfortune, trouble, or uncertainty.

Worry is a state of restlessness and agitation, producing mental disturbance, uneasiness, foreboding, anxiety, and painful uncertainty.

Worry is a destroyer of the soul.  If unchecked, it results in mental illness.  Worry in the mind causes shock to the body.

PRO 12:25  Anxiety in the heart of a man weighs it down, but a good word makes it glad.

People worry about sin which causes guilt.

PSA 38:18  For I confess my iniquity; I am full of anxiety because of my sin.

And worry is a sin, therefore, we are ordered to stop worrying.

ROM 14:23  Whatever is not from faith is sin.

LUK 12:29  "And do not seek what you shall eat, and what you shall drink, and do not keep worrying.”

These mental attitude sins are very subtle, because they blaspheme the character of God and say in effect that God is not capable of taking care of you.

  1. Anger:  Anger is expressed in antagonism, hatred, exasperation, resentment, and irrationality.  It can be mental or emotional or both.  Anger motivates jealousy and cruelty, PRO 27:4.  A person can't be angry without being cruel and unfair.

Anger is related to stupidity.

ECC 7:9, Do not be hasty to be angry in your right lobe; for anger resides in the bosom of fools."

Anger results in self‑induced misery.

PRO 22:8  He who sows iniquity will reap vanity, And the rod of his fury will perish.

  1. Judging:  Judging is a mental attitude sin as well as a verbal sin.

MAT 7:1‑3 is the practical application to the believer’s life.  "Judge not, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others you will be judged.  And with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you again.”

  1. HATRED:  Hatred is self-punishment, the coward's revenge for being intimidated, madness of the heart, the anger of the weak. Hatred does more harm to the believer who harbors it than to the object of his hatred.
  • Hatred paralyzes life; love releases it.
  • Hatred confuses life; love harmonizes it.
  • Hatred darkens life; love illuminates it.

1JO 4:20  If someone says, "I love God," and hates his brother, he is a liar

The believer who is operating in the Predesigned Plan of God is humble and does not waste time hating anyone.  True humility manifests itself by the avoidance of hatred.  As in 1JO 4:20, the mental attitude sin of hatred indicates that the believer does not love God.  Life is too short to hate anyone!

  1. MURDER:  Finally, murder can also be a mental attitude sin.

1JO 3:15  Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.

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