Summary: This series is based on Charles Stanley’s book "Landmines". The two messages on SC are two landmines which Dr. Stanley did not include. I highly recommend readding his book.
Landmine of Anger
* Landmines! Who among us would knowingly walk into a field of landmines? Without the proper training, probably no one would. When we see or hear the word landmine, we know that to activate one is to cause untold havoc.
* The landmine tonight is the landmine of “Anger.” Anger is an emotion which seems to wreak havoc on all of us at one time or another. Because it is an emotion, it can control to the point of making us unreasonable, irresponsible and even irrational. Let me offer a couple of examples;
* In a San Francisco paper an ad displayed that read, "1984 Mercedes 240 LS, fully loaded. First $50 gets the car." A man read this and called to see if it was a misprint. To his surprise it was not. He rushed over there and gave the woman the $50 and as she handed over the title to the car he asked why she was selling it for so cheap. She replied, "My husband just called from Las Vegas where he is with his secretary. He lost all of his money and wanted me to sell the car & send half of what I got for it to him so he could come home
* After spending 3-1/2 hours enduring long lines, rude clerks and insane regulations at the Department of Motor Vehicles, Glenn Vaughan stopped at a toy store to pick up a gift for his son. "I brought my selection - a baseball bat - to the cash register," he said. "Cash or charge?" the clerk asked. "Cash," He snapped. Then apologizing for his rudeness, he explained, "I’ve spent the entire afternoon at the motor vehicle bureau." The woman sweetly replied, "Shall I gift-wrap the bat…or are you going back there?"
* At one point during a game, the baseball coach said to one of his young players, "Do you understand what cooperation is? What a team is?" The little boy nodded in the affirmative. "Do you understand that what matters is whether we win together as a team?" The little boy nodded yes. "So," the coach continued, "when a strike is called, or you’re out at first, you don’t argue or curse or attack the umpire. Do you understand all that?" Again the little boy nodded. "Good," said the coach. "Now go over there and explain it to your mother!"
* The 4th chapter of Ephesians is a powerful chapter. If we would diligently read and absorb this one chapter, it could potentially redirect and change the status of our personal life, concepts, and church.
* It describes; the walk of the believer, the wants, work, and will of the Father. Then it describes the Lost Man as well as the Lord’s Man. Like a good parent, the description of the Lord’s man delves into some highly personal issues. Let’s read. (READ TEXT)
* Every person here has experienced a fit or bout of anger. If you’re alive, you’ve done it. The question today is this: What does the Bible teach us about this landmine? I see 4 thoughts in our text.
1. The directive about anger. –To many, any expressed anger is sinful yet the Bible teaches us that we can be angry & not sin. I think about Jesus’ clearing of the temple. Would you agree that it would take a big man with a fiery look to separate those Jewish money changers from their money? We can call this kind of anger “righteous indignation” and rightfully slow. Generally this type of anger is not about something done to ‘me.’ Jesus took offense to what was being done to ‘His Father’s’ house. A healthy anger is one which is for the protection of sacred things and/or other people. Jesus blew His stack at the desecration of the temple, but never became upset when they abused and beat Him on the way to the cross. This landmine is ignited when we become angry over our pet issues, our personal desires, or agendas. Know why?
2. The danger for anger – The danger is that we won’t let it go! Did you know that lingering anger has a profound physiologically negative impact on our health? One study determined that the heart would not pump enough blood to the brain during times of extreme anger. This makes sense to me. This could be why, in the fit of our rage, we say such intelligent things. Not only does unfettered anger hurt us but it also has the tendency to grow into OTHER problems. If we harbor and rehearse our anger, it will grow a root of bitterness within us that will control our lives.
3. The disaster from anger – When anger becomes sinful it does damage that is very difficult to undo. This is why Paul writes, “Don’t give the devil an opportunity.” Anger will open the door for Satan to get an entrée into your life and he will use whatever is available to him for his purposes. By the way, think about the type of anger you have. I read that anger comes in two varieties: the microwave or the conventional oven. As you can guess, the conventional oven is that temper that takes a while to heat up and longer to cool down. The microwave temper explodes at a moment’s notice. It is both destructive and contagious at the same time. It will distance you from God. I suggest sinful anger reveals immaturity.