Towards a Christain response to anger -Part 1   1 comment

Col 3:8

8 But now you also, put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth.

Now there a couple of things that one should at all costs avoid, and the text in Colossians gives us a very good starting point. Anger at best is a destructive emotion. And when people say “ I am going to give you some constructive criticism, quite frankly, I cringe. It normally means “  I am going to take a bite out of you because you are doing something I don’t approve of. Now certain things you should be disapproving off and certainly some things you should be angry at. But since we are not God, we cannot keep anger to ourselves as an explicit right of expression. On the contrary scripture says right here in the text “put away such things” Good advice from the Proverbs starts right here in showing the Christian how to handle this volatile emotion. A gentle answer turns away wrath, But a harsh word stirs up anger. Prov 15:1  In other words, watch your mouth, control your temper, it is yours to control. Galatians 5:22 states that the fruit of the Spirit is “self control” to be self controlled is to be supernaturally, natural, it is the defining mark of a Spirit filled man or woman to be in control of their conduct.

There things particular to anger, that the Bible speaks about , regrding the kind of expectation there is for the conduct of believers, Ephesians 4 indicate,” 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.” We are to be differnt than the world in our responses.

The attitude towards us from sinful from  an aggressive world, is to be different. Revenge belongs to God, we are to pray for our enemies. We are to watch what we say, “ Ephesians again lights up the way “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths” We are to “31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.

Further to this when people are malicious or wicked in their manner toward us, we are to according to James”, 2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance’ This does not come naturally to even the mild mannered among us.!

It requires a “supernatural” temperament. A temperament born from above, like that of Christ. Bible counsel tells us to not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. we are what it says. I find it very disturbing when speaking to professing believers who do not tame the tongue and do not seem to care that their conduct belies their profession. This is the challenge, and the freedom we have in Christ, we are to look to God and to heaven, it is very heavenly minded to be loving, gracious, kind, temperate, self controlled, which are all gifts of the Spirt who works to change us through the Word.

We are exhorted to “ prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. 14 As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance.” (1 Peter)

This is true heavenly mindeness to embrace the cross and let the Word govern your thinking

The story is told of Saint Telemachus (alsoAlmachus[1] or Tilemahos  who was a monk who, according to the Church historian Theodoret[2],  tried to stop a gladiator fight in a Roman amphitheatre, and was stoned to death by the crowd. The Christian Emperor Honorius  was impressed so by the monk’s martyrdom that it spurred him to issue an edict banning gladiator fights. The last known gladiator fight in Rome was on January 1, 404 AD, so this is usually given as the date of Telemachus’ martyrdom.

This is the kind of heavenly mindedness we are to display wherever we are our hope is to govern our conduct, and our hope is in Christ who saves the ungoldy the unkind and the ungratefull  There has to be kind indifference to what those who can kill the body but can do no harm the soul. Jeremiah Burroughs, a puritan theologian of old says it quite simple. “It is better to suffer for doing good than to sin, for it’s the evil of evils to bring disgrace to the name of Christ by angry, malicious, conduct. “ better to suffer than to sin.

Much more can be said about controlling your temper, the problem with losing it is, you have to find it again. And never let grudge gain foothold in your life, it is like cancer that eats the soul. Better to lay all harm done to you at the Saviours feet. He knows how to take care of you and of those who come to do you harm. Looking to Christ has always been the answer, also in this. Look to Christ! To Him belongs the final say, we are to learn to not just respond in a selfish manner, but to lay aside our fleshly impulses, to become angry and bitter , Christ is to be our treasure, not our self esteem. Better to be at a loss in the world, than at a loss and without Christ.


Posted May 26, 2010 by Reformed and renewed in Uncategorized

One response to “Towards a Christain response to anger -Part 1

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  1. Great message. I have really enjoyed reading the posts on your blog. I invite you to visit my blog and comment on what you read there. God bless, Lloyd

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