Saturday, May 16, 2009

Doest Thou Well To Be Angry?

God said to Jonah, Doest thou well to be angry?
--Jonah 4:9

Anger is not always or necessarily sinful, but it has such a tendency to run wild that whenever it displays itself, we should be quick to question its character with this inquiry, "Doest thou well to be angry?" It may be that we can answer, "Yes." Very frequently anger is the madman's firebrand, but sometimes it is Elijah's fire from heaven. We do well when we are angry with sin, because of the wrong that it commits against our good and gracious God; or with ourselves because we remain so foolish after so much divine instruction; or with others when the sole cause of anger is the evil that they do. He who is not angry at transgression becomes a partaker in it. Sin is a loathsome and hateful thing, and no renewed heart can patiently endure it. God Himself is angry with the wicked every day, and it is written in His Word, "Ye that love the Lord, hate evil" (Ps. 97:10). Far more frequently it is to be feared that our anger is not commendable or even justifiable, and then we must answer, "No." Why should we be fretful with children, angry with servants, and irate with companions? Is such anger honorable to our Christian profession or glorifying to God? Is it not the old evil heart seeking to gain dominion, and should we not resist it with all the might of our newborn nature? Many false believers give way to temper as though it were useless to attempt resistance; but let the true believer remember that he must be a conqueror in every point, or else he cannot be crowned. If we cannot control our tempers, what has grace done for us? Someone told Mr. Jay that grace was often grafted on the stump of a crab apple tree. "Yes," said he, "but the fruit will not be crabs." We must not make natural infirmity an excuse for sin, but we must fly to the cross and pray to the Lord to crucify our tempers and renew us in gentleness and meekness after His own image.

Morning By Morning,
Charles Spurgeon

This seems to be one of my hardest struggling points in my walk with Christ. Sometimes I think my main problem is when my anger pops up I let it take over, or more appropriately I let my flesh take over; then the anger grows into a monster that cannot be controlled. At times like those I have to pray to Christ to help me to, "take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ." (2 Cor 10:5). Many a time I find that I am trying to control my anger, and yet the anger still burns. Instead I should be humbling myself, swallowing my pride and falling to my knees and asking Him to purify my heart and banish my fleshly nature. I have found out, sometimes the hard way, that our submission to Christ in ALL things is one of the greatest things we can do in our walk with Christ.

Lord help me to continue to humble and submit myself to You. Lord help me to make every thought obedient to You. Help me to come to my knees and let You do Your work in me. I also pray Lord for all of my brothers and sisters in Christ who also struggle with their fleshly anger. I pray that we all continue to be angry with sin and hate our sinful nature, but not to let our anger cause us to sin against You Lord. Lord may you help us all to know what righteous anger is and to use it to glorify You.

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