Summary: God has the answers for our anger. We need to: 1. See the ugliness of our ungodly anger. 2. Accept the ownership of our anger. 3. Consider the cause of our anger. 4. Trust Christ to help us control our anger. 5. Forgive as we have been forgiven.
God’s Answers for Our Anger
Sermon by Rick Crandall
Grayson Baptist Church - Jan. 14, 2018
*Please open your Bibles to Ephesians 4 to see what God has to say about our anger. Here Paul is speaking to Christians, and on some level, all of us have to face up to our anger. If you don’t believe it, take a bottle away from any happy baby, and in two seconds you will have a very angry person on your hands.
*Anger can be a big problem for us. But God has the answers for our anger. Please think about that as we read Ephesians 4:20-32.
*Do you ever lose your temper? Have you ever had a big blow up over something really small? Have you ever gotten mad, and said something you shouldn’t have said, something you didn’t mean, something you wish you could take back?
*Well, you’re not alone. Some of us struggle with our anger more than others. But all of us have been there to one degree or another. And all of us have to overcome our anger on some level. The good news is that God has the answers for our anger! And here’s what to do:
1. First: We need to see the ugliness of our ungodly anger.
*God wants us to see the ugliness of our ungodly anger. But please understand that some anger is appropriate. In vs. 26, Paul tells Christians to "be angry and sin not." One reason why this is possible is because there is such a thing as good anger. We know this is true because God gets angry, and He never does anything wrong.
*A good place to see the Lord's righteous anger is in Mark 3:1-5. There God's Word says this about Jesus:
1. And He entered the synagogue again, and a man was there who had a withered hand.
2. And they watched Him closely, whether He would heal him on the Sabbath, so that they might accuse Him.
3. Then He said to the man who had the withered hand, "Step forward.''
4. And He said to them, "Is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?'' But they kept silent.
5. So when He had looked around at them with anger, being grieved by the hardness of their hearts, He said to the man, "Stretch out your hand.'' And he stretched it out, and his hand was restored as whole as the other.
*God gets angry, and we are created in the image of God, so godly anger is good. In fact, the only good anger is godly anger. There is such a thing as righteous indignation. And God will put us in places to take a stand for truth, for justice, for righteousness, and for Him.
*At the right time, in the right way, for the right reason, godly anger is good. But most of the time when we get angry, we do sin. That's the problem. And that’s the main reason why in vs. 26, Paul said: "Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath."
*James 1:16-20 helps us understand. There God’s Word says this to Christians:
16. Do not err, my beloved brethren.
17. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.
18. Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.
19. Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath:
20. For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.
*Our ungodly anger is an unrighteous, ugly thing, and it can cause terrible damage in our lives. That’s why in vs. 26, Paul said: "Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath."
*Proverbs 14:17 says, "He who is quick-tempered acts foolishly, and a man of wicked intentions is hated."
-Proverbs 15:18 in the NAS says: "A hot-tempered man stirs up strife, But the slow to anger calms a dispute."
-The NLT says: "A hothead starts fights; a cool-tempered person tries to stop them."
*That's why Psalm 37:8 tells us to "cease from anger, and forsake wrath; Do not fret; it only causes harm."
*We need to see the ugliness of our ungodly anger. Will Rogers once said: "Whenever you fly into a rage, you seldom make a safe landing." -- And he was right. (1)
*Philip Ryken said: "We need to see how destructive our anger is, both to ourselves and to others. Unrighteous rage destroys the intimacy between a husband and wife, the friendship between a parent and child, the effectiveness of a work force, and the ministry of any Christian who won't get their temper under control. And if we are going to make any progress in this area, we need to see how serious a sin it really is." (2)