Summary: to learn how to control anger in godly ways

Good and Angry

James 1:19-20

Primary Purpose: To encourage the congregation to control their anger in

godly ways.


Think of the last time you got angry. How did you respond to those around you? Did you say things you shouldn’t have or hurt your witness to

another person? Sometimes we can really destroy our witness when we get angry. Is all anger sin? Is it possible to control my anger and express it? I

feel that in the church today we lose a lot of our credibility with those in our community, the unchurched and the unsaved because of our witness to them when we get angry.

A lady once came to Billy Sunday and tried to rationalize her angry outbursts. “There’s nothing wrong with losing my temper,” She said, “I blow up, and then it’s all over.” So does a shotgun,” Sunday replied, “and look at the damage it leaves


Getting angry can sometimes be like leaping into a wonderfully responsive sports car, gunning the motor, taking off at high speed and then discovering

the brakes are out of order. We need to learn to control our anger. (Read Scripture)

Anger defined- a God given emotional response usually tied to a goal, value or expectation. It usually ignites when we feel invalidated or rejected. It can

be expressed by exploding anger and imploding. A God given emotion-

Dr.David Seamands said “Anger is a divinely implanted emotion. Closely allied to our instinct for right, it is designed to be used for constructive

spiritual purposes. The person who cannot feel anger at evil is a person who lacks enthusiasm for good. If you cannot hate wrong, it is very questionable

whether you really love righteousness. To not express anger is to not be human." The word anger or angry here is the word orge in the greek. Originally it meant any natural desire or impulse, came later to signify anger. In the KJV it uses the word wrath instead of anger.

The answer isn’t to repress it, but to express it assertively. Even God gets angry. When Christ was in the temple turning over tables, He didn’t do it with a smile on His face. When He called the Pharisees a bunch of white washed tombs and a pit of vipers--

He wasn’t just trying to be politically correct. He was mad. It says though that God is slow to anger (Ps 86:15). God’s anger lasts a moment, while his

favor lasts a lifetime. See also Prov 29:11- a fool gives full vent to his anger.

Expressing Anger in a Godly Life

1. Admit I have a problem (1 John 1:9). You can’t receive what God wants to give you until you accept the fact that your holding on to some things God

wants you to give up. Our problem is that we come to a point in our Christian life where we become comfortable and we stop surrendering all things to

Christ. Surrender means that I have given God permission to change, mold or to rid my life of anything that hinders me from becoming all that He wants me to be. We need to surrender our anger to God and allow Him to change us.

We have so many baby Christians in the church today because we came to a point of comfort and stopped allowing God to work in our lives. We are not

totally surrendered to Him. “Of the seven deadly sins, anger is possibly the most fun. To lick your

wounds, to smack your lips over grievances long past, to roll over your tongue the prospect of bitter confrontations still to come, to savor to the last

toothsome morsel both the pain you are given and the pain you are giving back -- in many ways it is a feast fit for a king. The chief drawback is that

what you are wolfing down is yourself. The skeleton at the feast is you.”

Frederick Buechner.

2. Ask God to set a guard over your tongue. (James 3:6) In verse 19 it says that we should be "slow to speak", that means that we should be careful and thoughtful about what we say, especially when we are angry. Realize that the devil wants you to explode and lose your credibility. He wants you to lose your witness with the lost and believers around you. We should mourn over the fact that we may have already lost our credibility with some people.

3. Anticipate problem areas. Consider how you can best prepare. What situations can you avoid? What people or situations do I struggle to control

my temper in.

4. Commit any situation where you are beginning to feel anger to God. (Eph 4:26) Give God control.

5. Learn from past mistakes. Treasure hunt those bad experiences. Seek to learn what good things you can learn from the negative and then let it go. God wants us to learn from past mistakes.

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