Let’s read Ephesians 4:30-32: “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, will all malice. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you” (NKJV). As believers in Christ we have been “born again” and we possess a “new nature” that cannot sin (see 2nd Peter 1:4 and 1st John 3:9). But we still have the “old nature” that we were born with and thus we may still commit sin (see Romans 7:14-23). In addition to these two natures we have the Holy Spirit indwelling us (as we see in verse 30). If we don’t yield our lives to the control of the Holy Spirit, we will indeed fall into sin and when we do sin we “grieve the Holy Spirit.” The Holy Spirit is a real Person who is “hurt” when we sin and thus in verse 31 we are exhorted to “put away” sins that would hurt Him and that hurt other people too. The list of sins is NOT a complete list, but a sample of some of the sins that take place in our heart and are then manifested through our speech.

*Bitterness….Resentment, holding grudges or an unwillingness to forgive someone.

*Wrath….Outbursts of rage (such as a “temper tantrum”).

*Anger….An attitude in one’s mind and heart where they feel hostility towards someone.

*Clamor….This is closely linked to “wrath,” for clamor is “shouting” or “bickering” in anger.

*Evil speaking…Speaking against someone to make them look bad.

*Malice….Here too we have an “attitude of mind and heart” where you “wish evil on others.”

In verse 32 we have some POSITIVE qualities of the New Nature. If we are indeed yielding our lives to the Holy Spirit we will be:

*Kind to one another….Actively helping those who are in need.

*Tenderhearted….Having “compassion” for others and in “sympathy” bearing their burdens.

*Forgiving one another….Pardoning those who have offended you and never bringing it up again.

Regarding your two questions about forgiveness, if you truly (in your heart of hearts) forgive someone, you will NOT hurt anymore, for your attitude of being wronged by them will be gone. Because of this change of heart and attitude towards them, you won’t harbor any ill feelings that would normally cause you to avoid them. In other words, you can’t really “forgive and not want to be around that person.” Your relationship with them will be healed through your forgiving them; you are now reconciled and will have a desire to be with them. This is what happened to us when we trusted Christ as our Savior, for God forgave us…resulting in our being reconciled to Him and a wonderful relationship was formed. This is why verse 32 ends with those precious words, “even as God in Christ forgave you.” (227.5) (DO)