Love your wives (agapate ta gunaika). Present active imperative, "keep on loving." That is precisely the point. Be not bitter (mh pikrainesqe). Present middle imperative in prohibition: "Stop being bitter" or "do not have the habit of being bitter." This is the sin of husbands. Pikrainw is an old verb from pikro (bitter). In N.T. only here and Revelation 8:11 ; Revelation 10:9 . The bitter word rankles in the soul.