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Christian Counseling - Emotions: The Good and Bad

You and I are wondrously created in the image and likeness of God, which includes an emotional nature. It is relatively easy to conclude from scripture that God is a feeling being. As One who knew and knows good and evil, He can experience pleasure, as well as pain (Ephesians 4:30).

Originally, Adam and Eve didn't know good and evil and, therefore, had not yet experienced troubled or painful emotions. Their feelings were a gift from God--good and pure. But when they sinned, they understood evil, and it corrupted their emotional nature. For the first time, they experienced anxiety, fear, shame and guilt.

The corruption of human emotions has continued to morph or quickly change throughout time into things like inappropriate jealousy and murderous, vengeful rage, which we see in the story of Cain and Able. It was not long thereafter that humans and animals became so depraved or evil in heart that God ended all of life, save Noah, his family and some animals. There is no feeling which cannot and has not been corrupted--love becomes possessive, godly jealousy or envy becomes evil jealousy or envy, lust for God becomes lust for power, human vengeful desires become vengeful actions, pride becomes excessive, hatred of evil becomes hatred for people, admiration becomes worship, pleasure becomes an obsessive and selfish quest, etc.

Can you think of one feeling that was not originally good? To help answer this question beyond a quick mental search, you will need a resource that defines Hebrew and Greek words, such as a software program ( This resource will tell you if a word in the original language was used both positively and negatively. Such is the case for words like: jealousy, envy, hatred, anger, pride, lust, and vengeance.

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