“Do not be deceived: ‘Bad company spoils good character'” (1 Corinthians 15:33).
The word “toxic” conjures up the image of something poisonous that poses a threat to anyone who comes near it. We often use the word to discuss with chemicals and waste. However, once in a while someone could be described in this fashion.
Like the signs warning us against touching dangerous materials, the Scriptures warn us of the risks of spending time with someone who might spread false and destructive beliefs. Part of the issue is the actual behavior they display. But perhaps more troubling is how easily their attitudes can contaminate those around them.
Who is a toxic person?
Being toxic goes beyond being unpleasant and even embarrassing. In fact, one definition of the term is “very harmful or unpleasant in a pervasive or insidious way.” This points to the seriousness of getting someone toxic in our lives: not only can they affect our mood through what they do and say, but their negative spirit may bring our hearts down.
In the book of Old Testament Proverbs we discover warnings against approaching someone with a harmful personality due to the trouble it brings us:
“A troublemaker and a villain who walks with a rotten mouth, who blinks his eye maliciously, signals his legs and moves his fingers, who plots evil in his heart by trickery – he at all times stirs up conflicts. Therefore, misfortune will overtake him straight away; can be suddenly destroyed – without rescue” (Proverbs 6:12-15).
“Come with the clever and develop into clever, for the companion of fools suffers harm” (Proverbs 13:20).
“Don’t make friends with a hot-tempered person or associate with a quick-tempered person, for chances are you’ll learn their ways and fall into their snares” (Proverbs 22:24-25).
What the Bible says about toxic people
Scripture repeatedly tells us that an individual’s true beliefs will eventually surface outwardly. Jesus Himself talked concerning the connection between toxic thoughts and toxic behavior.
“He continued: ‘What comes out of a person makes him unclean. For from inside, from the human heart, come evil thoughts: fornication, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, licentiousness, envy, slander, pride and foolishness. All this evil comes from inside and defiles man.Mark 7:20-23).
Many times a toxic person has lived this fashion for thus long that they’re unaware of their heart condition. This can lead someone to consider that they’re at all times right and to freely express all their opinions.
“Those who profess to be religious yet don’t keep their tongues in check are deceiving themselves and their religion is worthless” (James 1:26).
If confronted with this, that person may not see the issue of their thoughts or actions. Thus, they might not respond well to admonition, even given out of affection – no less than at first.
“’I’ll instruct you and teach you the best way you must go; I’ll advise you by taking a look at you with love. Don’t be like a horse or a mule, which has no sense but have to be controlled with a bit and a bridle, or else it’ll not come to you.Psalm 32:8-9).
Verses and examples of toxic people within the Holy Bible
God’s Word gives us examples of those that not only disregarded His Ways, but openly sought to show others against Him. Some were willing to repent and rejoin the Lord, but others stubbornly stuck to their course and suffered the results.
“He was prophesying in his house while David was playing his lyre as usual. Saul had a spear in his hand and he threw it, saying to himself, “I’ll nail David to the wall.” But David eluded him twice” (1 Samuel 18:10-11).
“Saul’s daughter, Michal, was in love with David, and after they told Saul, he was pleased. “I’ll give it to him,” he thought, “that it might be a snare for him, and that the hand of the Philistines could also be against him” (1 Samuel 18:20-21).
“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! You close the doors of the dominion of heaven to the faces of individuals. You yourselves don’t enter, and also you don’t allow those that attempt to enter'” (Matthew 23:13).
“Then the Pharisees went out and plotted to ensnare him in his words” (Matthew 22:15).
Some ultimately times
“But notice this: within the last days there can be terrible times. People can be selfish, lovers of cash, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to folks, ungrateful, ungodly, loveless, merciless, slanderous, incontinent, brutal, not loving goodness, treacherous, hasty, conceited, lovers of pleasures relatively than lovers of God—appearing to be godly but renouncing its power. Don’t have anything to do with people like that.”2 Timothy 3:1-5).
As Christians, how should we reply to the toxic people in our lives?
God passionately protects the purity of His people, yet He hopes that each one will eventually come to repentance. So when He calls us to achieve out and show His like to everyone we meet, the Lord warns us not to permit ourselves to be polluted in the method. But achieving balance is a challenge.
Part of this balance has to do with staying strong in your individual faith. Daily study of God’s Word and fellowship with other believers are only two activities that keep us in tune with Him. When we have now a solid foundation, serving others becomes one other strategy to worship the Lord.
Some verses instruct us to hunt the great of others, regardless of how they feel about us.
“…bless those that curse you, pray for individuals who mistreat you” (Luke 6:28).
“Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay with an evil blessing, for that is what you were called to inherit a blessing” (cf.1 Peter 3:9).
Another strategy to maintain the suitable balance on this area is to maintain our personal boundaries healthy and secure. If we’re too drained or tempted, our faith could also be compromised. So, while working for the good thing about others, we must also respect our own needs.
“Therefore, dear friends, since you might have been warned, be in your guard lest you be carried away by the error of lawlessness and fall out of your secure position” (2 Peter 3:17).
Finally, we must show respect for others for making their very own selections and realize that God will determine their fate.
“Or do you not know that the unrighteous is not going to inherit the dominion of God? Do not be deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor slanderers, nor extortioners will inherit the dominion of God. And so were a few of you. But you’ve got been washed, you’ve got been sanctified, you’ve got been justified within the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:11th of September).
Is God’s grace enough for the toxic people in our lives?
When persons are willing to be honest, self-aware, and humble, God’s grace is good enough to perform the life-changing work in them. He longs to be invited into someone’s heart in order that he might help them develop into more Christlike.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shouldn’t perish but have everlasting life” (cf.John 3:16).
God also often works through his people:
“For when you were darkness, now you might be light within the Lord. Live as children of the sunshine (since the fruit of the sunshine is all goodness, justice and truth) and discover what pleases the Lord. Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but relatively expose them” (Ephesians 5:8-11).
“If your brother or sister sins against you, rebuke them; and in the event that they repent, forgive them. Even in the event that they sin against you seven times a day and are available back to you seven times saying, “I repent,” you could forgive them.Luke 17:3-4).
While we will probably want to help even probably the most toxic people, we must protect our own well-being. In deciding whether to actively reach out to them or silently keep them in prayer, we must ask God to assist us keep our faith pure and robust in the method.
In Psalms 101David makes a promise that we are able to speak for ourselves:
“I is not going to look with approval at anything that’s despicable. I hate what unbelievers do; I may have no part in it. Perversity of heart can be removed from me; I may have nothing to do with the bad. He who secretly slanders his neighbor, I’ll silence; he who has haughty eyes and a proud heart I is not going to bear. My eyes can be on the faithful within the land, that they might dwell with me; he whose conduct is blameless will serve me. No treacherous person will dwell in my house; nobody who speaks falsehood will stand in my presence” (Psalm 101:3-7).
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