DAILY VIDEO DEVOTIONAL
Is it ever okay to be angry? Often I find Christians are confused by the subject of anger. In defense of their outbursts, they say, “The Bible speaks of being angry but not sinning.” But the kind of rage in many people today isn’t the anger the Bible is talking about when it says we’re not to let the sun go down on our anger.
So when is anger good, and when is it bad? First we need to understand anger from a biblical perspective. There are three Greek words used in the New Testament that are often translated as the verb angered. The first is thumos, an agitated feeling that results in outbursts. The next is parorgismos, which is a more thoughtful feeling or “righteous indignation” — a disgust for injustice. The final word is aganaktesis, which refers to physical pain or irritation.
It’s this first word, thumos, that I want to deal with when I speak of victory over anger. It’s the word used in Galatians 5:20 when describing the deeds of the flesh. The King James Version translates it as wrath. No matter what the translation, one thing is not arguable: Thumoi in Galatians 5:20 is a work of the flesh — and not pleasing to God. We must overcome those feelings. There’s no excuse for the Christian to have outbursts of thumoi.” We cannot wrap our anger with spiritual terminology and parade it as something holy. It’s a product of a life lived in the power of the flesh and not the Spirit. It’s abominable to God.
Let’s call this kind of outburst of anger what it is: sin. A husband yelling at a wife in the name of the Lord is sin. A husband or wife beating a child from an outburst of anger is sin. Christians having outbursts of anger in the work of God is inexcusable. We must recognize the deeds of the flesh — and deal with them accordingly.
How do we overcome anger? If we look closely at the cause of much of our anger, we usually find it’s a result of deep hurt. We become angry because we feel mistreated or because we have received a raw deal. Or perhaps someone has inflicted pain and injury on us. So we hold unresolved feelings of bitterness that eventually make their way out of our lives in outbursts of anger. We do and say things not in sync with how we would normally respond.
One story in the Bible has been a tremendous help to me in overcoming feelings I have harbored in my heart. Joseph had been treated unjustly by his brothers. If anyone had a reason to get angry, Joseph did. Yet when he saw his brothers later in life, he responded to them saying, “You meant it for evil, but God meant it for good.” Joseph understood this great truth: God had a very specific plan for his life. Though he had received what could easily have been perceived as a raw deal, Joseph looked beyond his circumstances. He saw God’s hand and God’s provision. So he didn’t become bitter. There were no outbursts of thumoi. Instead, an unbelievable sense of calm, love, and peace filled his heart. Joseph knew that God was sovereign. He trusted His reign and rule in His life.
I believe we can overcome those horrible outbursts of anger that can plague our lives. We too must trust in God as our sovereign Lord. We need to get our focus off our circumstances — and onto His omnipotence. We need to see that He is in control. That perspective will come only as we spend time with Him: in His Word and in prayer. Self-control is a fruit of the Spirit. As I spend time in the fullness of His presence, I am at peace. When stormy circumstances engulf my life, I don’t have to yield to outbursts of anger. I can rest in sweet assurance and peace that God is in control. That gives me victory over anger.
Matthew : Chapter 5
21) “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder,[a] and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ 22) But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister[b][c] will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, ‘Raca,’[d] is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell. 23) “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, 24) leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift. 25) “Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still together on the way, or your adversary may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison. 26) Truly I tell you, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny. Adultery
Book of the Month
Sammy Tippit told his fiancée, “I can’t promise we’ll be rich, but life won’t be boring.”
Sammy had no idea what an understatement that would become. Beginning in the bars of Baton Rouge and the nightclubs of Chicago, Tippit has shared the news of life-changing faith in Christ all over the world – including in the middle of a revolution in Romania, the aftermath of genocide in Rwanda, and war in Burundi and the Congo.
Sammy’s lifelong adventure has come at a great price. He’s been cursed, threatened, arrested, deported, and blacklisted. He’s also been personally broken, ravaged with illness, and devastated by grief.
Yet he continues to preach to in stadiums, in open fields, and via satellite technology to hundreds of thousands around the globe. For all other books…
About Sammy Tippit Ministries
STM has been providing inspiration and help around the world for nearly 50 years. Sammy Tippit, founder and president, is a world renowned counselor, teacher and evangelist with experience serving and helping people in over 80 countries. Sammy provides materials that help people tackle a broad array of social, societal, psychological and spiritual issues. He is particularly passionate about making materials accessible to other countries around the world. Sammy is married to Debara “Tex” Tippit, and they have two children and five grandchildren.
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