Anger is something that all of us have had to deal with at one time or another.
In scripture it is God's plan is for us to reap the benefit of this feeling- whether to control or to forgive. He desires peace in our innermost part.
And whether you're really good at processing and letting go of it or whether it is an emotion that has happened to you in childhood and that you have just carried it on to adulthood. God has done everything and laid out the truth of Scripture to allow us to apply it and live a life that is free from the consequences. We want to show how he can take our acrimony and allow God's truth to show us what we are really lacking. Show us where our basic needs are, show us where our expectations are and realize that he is able to work a plan to best suit our needs.
Rage is a secondary emotion. And basically what that means is that there is a feeling that we feel first and then the the eruption happens. It allows us to see that hurt, injustice, fear, and frustration.
List Of Scripture Verses On Anger
Do as God direct us through the scriptures in the Bible:
- "A fool uttereth all his mind: but a wise man keepeth it in till afterwards." Proverbs 29:11
- "because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires." James 1:20
- "The discretion of a man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to pass over a transgression." Proverbs 19:11
- "A person’s wisdom yields patience; it is to one’s glory to overlook an offense." Proverbs 19:11
- "Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools." Ecclesiastes 7:9
- "A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger." Proverbs 15:1
- "A hot-tempered person stirs up conflict, but the one who is patient calms a quarrel." Proverbs 15:18
- "But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips." Colossians 3:8
- "Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: 20 For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God." James 1:19-20
- "What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? 2 You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God." James 4:1-2
- "Better a patient person than a warrior, one with self-control than one who takes a city." Proverbs 16:32
- "Do not make friends with a hot-tempered person, do not associate with one easily angered," Proverbs 22:24
- "But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, ‘Raca,’ is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell." Matthew 5:22
- "Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil. 9 For those who are evil will be destroyed, but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land." Psalm 37:8-9
- "God is a righteous judge, a God who displays his wrath every day." Psalm 7:11
- "The commanders of units of a hundred did just as Jehoiada the priest ordered. Each one took his men—those who were going on duty on the Sabbath and those who were going off duty—and came to Jehoiada the priest. 10 Then he gave the commanders the spears and shields that had belonged to King David and that were in the temple of the LORD." 2 Kings 11:9-10
- "So the LORD was very angry with Israel and removed them from his presence. Only the tribe of Judah was left," 2 Kings 17:18
- "Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly." Proverbs 14:29
- "Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: 27 Neither give place to the devil. 28 Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth. 29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. 30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:" Ephesians 4:26-31
The Different Sources Of Anger That Affect Us
So, someone that I love hurts my feelings. It can also be a physical pain. Injustice, things are not fair, we go through this all the time. Someone else gets promoted, somebody else gets the job, three people are invited out to dinner and we am not one of those. But the unfairness of life, the frustration in life...
...we try to meet a goal but it's being blocked.
The last of these primary sources is fear. There are times that we make choices in our lives and we find ourselves in situations that we don't know how to get out of. Which means: We don't know what to do when we're in it - although listening to the above listed Biblical examples on anger can help a lot. Whenever we're unsure, whenever we're uncertain, whenever we're in a situation where I don't want to be; I don't know how to get out and maybe other people have put us in those situations and that can cause a lot of reaction.
Hurt, Injustice, Fear, And Frustration Are The Primary Sources Of Anger
And we realize Jesus was indignant.
When the disciples did not allow the children to come to Jesus and sit on his lap and visit with him, it says that Jesus was indignant and he said: "Suffer the little children to come unto me."
What we're hoping that we're seeing is that it's normal, it is natural. This emotion is kind of like that dashboard light on your car and whenever we feel it, we realize that some action needs to be taken. So here it is: The feeling is not at sin, it;s is not the problem; it is simply the warning light saying an emotion needs to change - and you can use the scripture versus to help with temper, and forgiveness.
Wrath is revenge. it is wanting revenge. I know that we have heard that God is a God of wrath, he is also a God of love but that wrath means that something is wrong and we need to make it right. It allows the inner emotion of impatience to come out to external behaviors; I feel it, therefore, I'm going to do a re-action. That is wrath.
That is a fiery irritation. That is when we lose self-control. We want to punish, it is overwhelming. And then the last one, I'm afraid that we have all seen issues of rage. We have men in our families, possibly, that have raged. We see and hear about road rage. Rage is something where all sense goes away. It is a loss of self-control often to the extent of violence.
Here’s how it goes: In order for us to work effectively with somebody, what we need to realize, there are different kinds of reactions. People show it differently, it's misplaced differently. Prolonging this is one of the toughest issues, it's held in for a long period of time.
We've been talking about in childhood. When something happens in childhood and now I'm 30, 40, 50, 60 years old and those feelings of lack of love that I was not important. That I do not feel secure or free to be myself; that people are always looking down on me; that I will never make it, I will never make the right decision; I will never be what somebody else wants me to be.
That grows with me: The correct way to do it when you get angry about a situation or a person, is to deal with it right then and then move on. This can be done by taking a moment to reflect on the scriptures word about these cases, and remind yourself that this is the healthy way.
The pressed down annoyance is another thing...
... and as something happens, I deny it. I press it down, I act as if it didn't happen and I can go about my life just as normal. Another way that we release this emotion is being provoked. That's that short temper that short fuse. The emotion and feeling happens and I react.
4. Profuse Anger.
It's like the volcano, it's going everywhere, it has built up, the lava, everything is just spewing, and we’re not stopping who gets hit. If I have not let that steam come out, if I have not told someone about the abuse and steps have been taken, then chances are way too good, I am going to become an abuser myself. Bullies are made the same way...
Dad towards a boy at home, somebody on the playground to anyone. We're hearing so much about the cyberbullying now and how do you stop that?
To somebody that they perceive to be weaker. Even as adults: If an adult has not properly handled the incredible injustice done to them as a child and the this feeling coming in, then as an adult I am also bullying. Reading scripture early in life can help create foundations for moments of realization during this reaction, and present these moments to yourself as your enacting them.
It couldn’t be easier. There are so many children nowadays that have started cutting. So many teenagers that have found a way of release and that's what they're going to call it, is release. The pain that's built up, the embarrassment, the shame, and what shame is, is 'I am no good'. And we get those messages from our home, from our family of origin, that I am no good. And that's one of the distortions. That's one of the lies that we carry through life and I need release. I'm not going to take it out on you but I can take it out on me. This means...
The issues that we have been talking about, how we take it out aggressively by being a bully, by being an abuser. The way that we take it out towards ourselves, towards depression or even suicide, allows us to realize what we have been holding on to. Fact is: The more we think about something, the more emotion builds up and then an re-action is going to happen.
God's Reason For Anger In Our Lives
When Moses was watching the Egyptian army take advantage of the Israelites, who were their slaves, over and over and over and mistreating them, his displeasure grew, his frustration grew.
You realize Moses was an Israelite and Pharaoh asked that all of the young boys, two years old and younger, be put to death. Moses should have been put to death. But, interestingly, he came to live in the palace of that very king that ordered his death. So he grew up there almost as his grandson and he is watching his fellow Israelites being mistreated for all of his life.
One time he couldn't take it anymore and what did he do? You may know this story: He went out and while an Egyptian was mistreating and beating an Israelite, he killed the Egyptian and then hid his body in the sand. That is one way that we see the power and the problems that this action brings with it.
When we react, there are typically problems and that brings regret. That's what happened to Moses. And what we can learn from him is that it's not the issue, it is not the sin. But what I do with the this buildup is what we need to focus on. Moses sees something happening and it gets him angry. He has two choices at this point and one is to act and the other one is the one that he chose to do.
And that is, react... and typically that comes with problems.
That comes with regret. The guilt is not in the resentment. And if you are feeling guilty because of your actions, please realize that is not the place of guilt. Our guilt comes in what we do with it. When Jesus was in the temple and the money changers were defiling the house of God, he threw over the tables, money scattering, doves flying all over, everywhere. As demonstrated in scripture, his purpose was to cleanse the temple.
His purpose was good and was honorable and for the Lord's best...
God always wants his best when he allows anger:
- When we realize that that red light is flashing, let's check and see; are there boundaries that I need to reset?
- Are there people I need to forgive?
- Are there things in me that need changing that need cleansing so that this temple can be as he purposed it to be?
What Happens When I Hold On To This Feeling On Anger?
Psychology Today reported that there are physical symptoms, there are emotional symptoms, and there are even spiritual symptoms that happen as I hold on to this perception. Some of these have been mentioned here before and maybe you are suffering from some of these.
But physical symptoms, what about headaches or heart disease, high blood pressure or insomnia? This emotion stays within us. Inside your heart and inside your body and inside your relationship with the Lord. Emotional symptoms can be anxiety and bitterness, depression, fear, and worry. And then when we hang on to it, something happens with our relationship with the Lord.
The truth is: A lifelong Christian struggling with anger can make the decisions that feel secure but may not be sure if they are directing their life any longer. But as we hold on and refuse to deal with it, to process it or to forgive, then that connection can be broken.
We've heard of the suggestion to count to 10 when you're angry.
Count to 10 is not the simple fact about the 1 2 3 4 5 to 10, it is allowing us to get the mindset and an understanding and a concern for the other person's welfare. This is a time when I can appropriately calm myself down and in a controlled manner respond to what has just happened. That is the acting over the reacting. I think there are a few interesting actions that we do, some appropriate actions and they're listed in your key under causes.
Based on the scriptures teachings, ask yourself these questions:
- Do you use tactful compassionate words when you're responding?
- Do you see the other person's point of view?
- Do you want to help the person who has angered you?
I can already tell you that typically my responses are not like this. Some of the inappropriate responses would be using tactless condemning words or to see only your own point of view and try to get that across or do you want to punish the one who had enacted these feelins onto you?
We’ve all done it. There's more of these questions that you can use as a checklist.
What Does the Bible Say About Controlling Anger?
In our definition earlier, we talked about when a need or an expectation was not met.
We all have expectations in life: When we get in the car, we kind of expect it to start. When we leave the office, hopefully, we'll get home without getting stuck in traffic. So many things happen in our daily lives that we see as distractions or that set us back from what we want as our goal. A Christian with hatred and bitterness has expectations; things that should not happen, things that one doesn't deserve to have happen to them.
We have expectations towards other people. They should always be there for me, they should help me when I need them, and they should be available when I need them. I have expectations for myself, a way that I handle myself that I react towards people.
We have expectations towards God and His word in scripture about his expectations for us in these times. Who he should be, how he should hear me, maybe even how he should answer me. Any of these unrealistic expectations can cause an eruption of emotions when they don't happen just exactly the way that I think that they should happen. Improper expectations are basically the root cause of sinful anger (Listen to podcast).
That I have rights. And it's a wrong belief about rights. As we move into the steps to solution using scripture, what we realize is that people are coming in our doors and people are coming to us with the reaction. Can't pinpoint what it is for, who it is to, what is it is about. You're just angry with the world. It's often hard at that point to determine exactly where that these feelings started and what keeps driving it. This is one important thing.
Before you visit with somebody else, make a list to determine the level of anger:
- Who deserves this outrage?
- Where did it come from?
- And then the amount of temper you have towards each person on that list.
We've talked earlier about the four primary sources of anger, of hurt, injustice, fear, and frustration. Now is the time that those are going to be coming back into play as we analyze the source of the this emotion towards each person that we have listed. It may be a father, it may be a brother.
A lot of the times, it’s themselves, sometimes it's God. But however you need to work it, find out who the people are in their past and in their present that they are carrying it against. And then, what percentage would they put towards each person? You can consider using that, anyway you want.
Just to know who they are mad at and how you would resolve it. If someone does put God or even the teaching in the scripture on that list and that happened so often; we walk them through the characteristics of God, the plans God has and the purpose he has. The scripture's purpose is to bring good out of evil. It's purpose is to bring joy out of your sorrow. God uses your suffering for his greatest good. And he uses your troubles to make the character again and make the person that he first intended you to be.
The first thing we have to do when we work with the awareness is to face it, face it full on. Not excusing anybody, not minimizing it. What has it done to me?
Anger Management As A Christian
In the story of Joseph in the Bible, Joseph's father favored him and he showed him by making him a beautifully embroidered coat. Well, you can imagine what that did to the brothers. They were so angry and so jealous. They had dug a pit, they threw him into the pit and ended up selling him to somebody from another country. But Joseph didn't get bitter. Joseph accepted the sovereignty of God...
...he chose to forgive his brothers and then he released everything to God.
The Admit, Accept, Choose, and Release is what we have to walk through for ourselves. As a Christian with rage issues it can sometimes be hard to admit the things that we have done to get us to such a point of despair with ourselves. But this is what God has in mind. The word in the scripture wants the benefit of this reaction, even if it's to ourselves, to act as that light on the dashboard, to allow me to know that action is necessary, change is necessary, forgiveness for myself and for others is necessary in order for us to move on.
When you are going through one a toughest time emotions can arise from all kinds of stimuli - this is a great time to look at scripture verses to help with the reaction. We make connections, good or bad, according to how we perceive an object in relation to what we are focused on at the time. One can create a 'trigger point' that is assigned to a physical object that can help them meditate on this feeling or emotion, and help remember the scripture to help them overcome the hardship.
There's no better way to assist one in assigning positive emotions than through Christian Jewelry that will help one be in remembrance of God, the Bible and it's scripture. There is hope...
Wherever we are...
Whatever situation we are in...
It is not us that is doing the change, it is God that is doing the change through us. And if you can see that and work that through with all of the people for your own self and then for others, the Lord has such a beautiful ending to their story.