Summary: What does God’s word tell us about dealing with our anger. Let’s look at this together that we may live peaceably together.
Jim Taylor in Currents tells the following story about his friend, Ralph Milton: One morning Ralph woke up at five o’clock to a noise that sounded like someone repairing boilers on his roof. Still in his pajamas, he went into the back yard to investigate. He found a woodpecker on the TV antenna, "pounding its little brains out on the metal pole." Angry at the little creature who ruined his sleep, Ralph picked up a rock and threw it. The rock sailed over the house, and he heard a distant crash as it hit the car. In utter disgust, Ralph took a vicious kick at a clod of dirt, only to remember -- too late -- that he was still in his bare feet. Uncontrolled anger, as Ralph learned, can sometimes be its own reward.
Jim Taylor, Currents.
What Should we know of Anger?
Anger: the growth of anger is dangerous. Unresolved anger festers and can become uncontrollable and give birth to murder.
There are three steps in the growth of anger given here.
1.The anger that broods, that is selfish. It harbors malice; it will not forget; it lingers; it broods; it wills and sometimes seeks revenge.
2.The anger that holds contempt (hraka.) It despises; it ridicules; it arrogantly exalts self and calls another person empty and useless. This is an anger that is full of malice. It despises and scorns. It arises from pride—a proud wrath (Proverbs 21:24). Such feelings or anger walk over and trample a person. It says that whatever ill comes upon a person is deserved.
3.The anger that curses. It seeks to destroy a man and his reputation morally, intellectually, and spiritually.
There can be a justified anger.
We are admonished to be angry with those who sin and do wrong, and are unjust and selfish in their behavior. However, a justified anger is disciplined and controlled; it is always limited to those who do wrong against God or against others. The difference between justified and unjustified anger is that justified anger is never selfish; it is never shown because of what has happened to oneself. It is purposeful and the believer knows they are angry for a legitimate reason, and they seek to correct the situation in the most peaceful way possible (Ephes. 4:26-27; Romans 12:18; John 2:14-17).
“Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath” (Ephes. 4:26).
“If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peacably with all men” (Romans 12:18).
“And the Jews’ passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem, and found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting: and when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changer’s money, and overthrew the tables” (John 2:13-16).
Anger is cast against many. Too often hurt feelings exist between those who are supposed to be the closest: husband and wife, parent and child, neighbor and friend, employer and employee. The Lord is clear about the matter: we must never allow anger to take hold of us without just cause.
“But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth” (Col. 3:8).
“Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath” (James 1:19).
“Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him” (1 John 3:15).
“Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil” (Psalm 37:8).
“He that is soon angry dealeth foolishly; and a man of wicked devices is hated” (Proverbs 14:17).
“He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city” (Proverbs 16:32).
“The discretion of a man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to pass over a transgression” (Proverbs 19:11).
“Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth in the bosom of fools” (Eccles. 7:9).
There are reasons why people get angry and develop feelings against others:
To seek revenge and to hurt.
To show ego or authority.
To reveal passion or secure some end.
To show hurt, resentment, and bitterness.
To express disagreement and displeasure.
To correct a wrong (a justified anger).
To give warning.
Anger: the judgment of anger. It is a serious matter to hold feelings against another person—a very serious matter.
(1) the danger of judgment
(2) the danger of having to come before earthy courts, and
(3) the danger of hell fire.
Violence is to be judged—not only before the courts of the world, but before the court of God.