Scripture tells us that we can be angry… yet sin not. It sounds like a contradiction… how can you be angry and not sin? Sin is the opposite of love! Yet you can be angry- as long as it’s a righteous anger.
So What Is A Righteous Anger?
Christians are not required to be all smiles, sunshine, love and happiness all the time. There are things that can make us upset… and should make us mad! When people distort scripture, we should be indignant because they are speaking about our God. When they mock God, we can be mad. Anything that goes against scripture we can be upset about. Jesus overturned a table at the Temple with the money changers. This was a display of anger because it defiled the Temple. But Jesus, in His indignation, did not sin.
It is not to say that if someone says something bad about God that we punch them, or harm them. But it doesn’t mean that we don’t feel a surge of offence rise up, nor sit by passively, either. We can speak the truth to them in love, as perhaps their perspective is misguided, or they are believing a lie. You may even bring someone to Christ.
Anger, however, in any other form is not a righteous anger, and is therefore a sin.
What Makes It A Sin?
It is the hate in your heart, and the subsequent hardening that makes it a sin. I can disagree with a person’s view, and not sin. But if I take it personally, and end up disliking the person because of it, offence has been generated, and I am, indeed, sinning.
Outbursts from time to time, even though it is a sin, we can repent for and ask forgiveness before our heart hardens. However, many are in bondage to anger, and acts of aggression can become the norm rather than the exception.
How Can I Tell If Anger In My Life is In Control Or Out Of Control?
I could jokingly say, “Ask those around you“, which would be a true assessment. Those we care about would be an accurate gauge of our true self. Family often know us best, and we are not generally as guarded around them. To them, we reveal our true selves, so if anger is a problem in our life, they would be the first to know.
If it exists, then you need to determine if it’s periodic- such as triggered by stressors- or if you are in bondage to anger. People who are in bondage to this emotion have outbursts about everything, and there are no real definitive triggers. Their moods often fluctuate, and they come across as “crusty”, not stressed.
Dr. Monte Miller discusses this topic in our next issue of Faith Filled Family Magazine. Monte goes into great detail illustrating the difference between someone who is just angry, and those who are in bondage to it. He will shed some light as to whether your range is situational, or becoming a problem, and will guide you into how to change your attitude.
This topic and many more featured in our December issue of Faith Filled Family Magazine coming out on November 26, 2018!