The Spirit of Self-Pity, by Pastor Bill

From notes taken on 28/12/1996 at Harvest Christian Fellowship's New Year's Conference

by Nathan Bailey

1 Kings 16:31... The Ahab spirit, a spirit of self-pity. All the tyrants of history dwelt in self-pity, e.g. "Mien Kamf" by Adolf Hitler = "My sorrows". This message presents 23 indications of the self-pitying spirit.
  1. It starts when we trivialize sin. This happens primarily when we do a comparison -- at least my sin isn't as bad as ...'s.
  2. Jezebel has the courage to do what Ahab wanted to do
  3. Makes a provision for the flesh (v32) erected to Baal. Men who have problems with self-pity usually have problems with pornography.
  4. Makes sin a sport (v33). Ahab only felt sorry when he was caught.
  5. (v34) Self-pity makes an incredibly hostile environment for children -- he traded children for success.
  6. Master blame-shifter. 1 Kings 18:17 Ahab calls Elijah the "troubler of Israel". Always come with an accusation. People full of self-pity never take responsibility for their actions.
  7. (v41) Ahab had watched the whole thing! He had seen the miraculous work/hand of God -- and was totally unaffected by it.
  8. 1 Kings 19:1 Delighted to get others in trouble
  9. 1 Kings 20:40 Judge others harshly -- people who are full of self-pity are wired backwards. When they should show compassion, they are harsh, and when they should be hard/firm, they are too lenient.
  10. (v42-43) Whine about their own judgment -- always see themselves as a victim.
  11. 1 Kings 21:2 Always focus on another man's field -- consumed by what others have and they don't, and will not hear of God's blessing in their life.
  12. 1 Kings 21:4 Always have a little black cloud over them. Sometimes it precedes them! (You can sense them coming as you sense this depression coming closer).
  13. 1 Kings 21:4 Spend hours in their bed. They are preoccupied with comfort -- food, movies, memories, etc.
  14. 1 Kings 21:6 Selected information, half-truths. Naboth has said that God forbade him to, that he could not do it.
  15. 1 Kings 21:8-9 Secretly enjoyed what was going on -- he didn't do it! But where did the seal come from? His finger! They cannot do it themselves, but are thoroughly enjoying it when someone else does it.
  16. 1 Kings 21:20 See the prophets as an enemy. They see close up prophets as an enemy -- when the prophet brings truth to their face.
  17. 1 Kings 21:27 Only respond to the major reproofs of God for a season.
  18. The children pay (v27). Generation transfer to ensure children do not follow in paths of parents.
  19. 1 Kings 22:8 Ahab sees the truth as evil (prophets just speak the truth) "Legalism! Control! Bondage!"
  20. 1 Kings 22:12 Likes to surround himself with sympathizers -- amazing ability to attract people who are offering unsanctified mercy (i.e. inappropriate compassion, loving them in their sin instead of confronting them out of it).
  21. 1 Kings 22:16 They really do know how to act -- that's why they act schizophrenic.
  22. 1 Kings 22:22 Entertain a deceiving spirit from God
  23. 1 Kings 22:30,34 They got preoccupied with evil/demonic, ends in death.
Self-pity is a dead-end! Evil matures just as much as righteousness can. "Christ's sacrifice is is not enough, I have to have pity on myself." Self-pity is satan's favourite baby-sitter.

Further reading

Read about overcoming secret sin, healthy sexuality or other essays on Christianity - covering hell, sex, drinking, gambling, smoking and tithing!

© Copyright 1997-2012, Nathan Bailey, All Rights Reserved. Permission is granted to print these articles for personal use, in whole or in part, provided the extract references the original URL,, so that people can find the latest version.
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