Solomon prayed for wisdom and God gave him a heart to discern right from wrong. In this series, we are learning how to do right. Today, we will look at the right way to handle anger. Proverbs 19:11 says, “The discretion of a man makes him slow to anger, and his glory is to overlook a transgression.” What does it mean to be slow to anger and to overlook a transgression? First, we have to understand…
The Meaning of Anger
Anger is an emotion, a feeling of intense indignation regarding a real or imagined threat, frustration, or injustice toward you or others you love. The truth is that we all have anger! The key word throughout Scripture is slow. Ephesians 4:26 says, “Be angry, and do not sin.” Be angry is a command, and so is do not sin. It is a sin to never get angry, but it is also a sin to blow up. Wisdom is slow to anger. Psalm 103:8 says the Lord is slow to anger. Proverbs 16:32 says, “He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty.” Anger is natural and normal. What you do with it makes it a sin. Jesus never sinned yet He got angry and drove out the moneychangers from the temple. He did it out of love for the Father’s House and the people. Anger is a God-given capacity. What makes you mad? We should get angry over injustice in the world, not things like losing our keys or being cut off in traffic.
The Misuse of Anger
Moses, David, Jonah, and Peter all got angry and got in trouble. Take Moses for example. He paid a high price for how he acted and didn’t get to enter the Promised Land. Anger can get you in a lot of trouble. Don’t fly off the handle or into a fit of rage. Will Rogers said, “People who fly into rage seldom make a good landing.” Proverbs 14:17 says, “A quick-tempered man acts foolishly.” Have you ever said something or did something when you were mad and then felt like a fool afterwards? “He who is slow to wrath has great understanding, but he who is impulsive exalts folly” (Prov. 14:29).
The Management of Anger
It is so important to confront your anger. It is pride that says, “I am above getting angry.” Stop refusing to deal with it. Stop making excuses like, “God made me that way. I just have Irish blood in me.” Consider your anger. Ask yourself, “Why am I so mad?” Sometimes we are mad over daily irritations or hurt from the past and everyone around pays for what someone else did.
It is also important to control your anger. You can control it. Just let the phone ring in the middle of an argument. You go from screaming, to a calm, “Hello.” The person on the other end of the line has no idea you were just in an argument! Proverbs 15:1 says, “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” It is not just what you say but how you say it. Anger is a choice.
Confess your anger. Ephesians 4:26-27 says, “‘Be angry, and do not sin’: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil.” Settle your conflict before you go to bed. Don’t allow the problem to fester. Don’t let the devil get the best of you. When your temper gets the best of you it reveals the worst in you. Break the stronghold and curse. Don’t pass it down to your children. Get alone with God and confess your anger and your sin to Jesus.
Finally, channel your anger. Redirect it to something else. You may say, “I’m so mad I’m going to clean out the garage!” That would be a great thing. Go exercise, hit golf balls at the driving range, etc.
In anger, the world killed Jesus. He opened not His mouth. He could have destroyed us all, but instead He took the anger and the wrath of God that we deserved. Through Jesus, and His death and resurrection, we can have victory over our anger!