Why this is important: There is a natural set of consequences for angry people. There is a backlash. Something very real is going to happen.
- We must guard ourselves and our hearts not to be an “angry person”.
- It is way too easy to start down that road.
- Finding our way back when we are lost is not easy.
- We don’t always have a compass and it gets very dark.
A man of great wrath will pay the penalty, for if you deliver him, you will only have to do it again.
English Standard Version. (2016). (Proverbs 19:19). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.
Our mission, given to us by Jesus, is to love. That is it. That should be our day. That should be our motivation. Love should be our passionate focus.
Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone… ‘If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this you will heap burning coals on his head.’ Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Romans 12:17-18, 20-21
Should we renounce anger? Jesus does not exhort us to get angry, as if anger were a good motivator or energy for positive action. (This is the kind of thing that many Psychologists and “pop psychologists” in in our culture today teach.)
Instead of getting angry at people Paul teaches us to,
Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
I get jealous. I get angry. One can lead to another. The parable of the prodigal son is a classic example. The faithful brother was jealous and got angry. It did not go well for him.
In our crazy social media world, we see the fun and success of others and get angry. One more reason to avoid Facebook altogether. Jealousy and anger must be dealt with.
Paul warns us in Galatians (5:19-21):
Now the works of the flesh are obvious: … strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambitions, dissensions, factions, and anything similar. I am warning you about these things—as I warned you before—that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Yikes! I won’t inherit the Kingdom of God. Seriously? Yes!
- Luke 15:28 — 28 “But he became angry and was not willing to go in; and his father came out and began pleading with him.
- Genesis 4:4–5 — 4 Abel, on his part also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of their fat portions. And the Master had regard for Abel and for his offering; 5 but for Cain and for his offering He had no regard. So Cain became very angry and his countenance fell.
- 1 Samuel 17:28 — 28 Now Eliab his oldest brother heard when he spoke to the men; and Eliab’s anger burned against David and he said, “Why have you come down? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your insolence and the wickedness of your heart; for you have come down in order to see the battle.”
- 1 Samuel 18:8 — 8 Then Saul became very angry, for this saying displeased him; and he said, “They have ascribed to David ten thousands, but to me they have ascribed thousands. Now what more can he have but the kingdom?”
- 1 Kings 21:4 — 4 So Ahab came into his house sullen and vexed because of the word which Naboth the Jezreelite had spoken to him; for he said, “I will not give you the inheritance of my fathers.” And he lay down on his bed and turned away his face and ate no food.