One of the sins that is so prevalent and gets little attention from the pulpit or from many Christians is the sin of anger. The first murder in recorded history comes in Genesis 4 when Cain kills his brother Abel in a rage of envy and bitterness...about acceptable worship to God.
Since the Fall of Cain and Abel's parents, Cain has not been the only son of Adam who was afflicted with anger, seething, boiling, simmering, burning, Christ-dishonoring, people scalding anger. The Bible speaks about anger, gives examples of anger (beginning with Cain), tells us to put sinful anger to death (Ephesians 4:17-32) and instructs us that anger flows out of our sinful hearts. We are to put sin to death by the power of the Holy Spirit through prayerful, trusting obedience in the promises and power of God (Romans 8:13).
For all those who struggle with bouts of anger, out of control anger, ugly, sinful, Christ-dishonoring, soul-defiling, people scalding anger, this BLOG is for you. There are many good resources to help you to face anger fully and put it to death and put on the Lord Jesus Christ and the fruit of the Spirit.
Let me recommend the following initial steps before listing the resources on anger. FIRST, you must face anger as the sin that it is before God; SECOND you must face anger for the sin it is against your fellow human beings created in the image of God. THIRD, you must fact anger as the soul defiling enemy of your Christian life. Men are disqualified from serving from elders if they have out of control tempers. Anger which controls a person leads to so many hard words, bruised loved ones, spousal and child abuse, murder and manslaughter, etc, etc. etc. Anger is an terrible sin and must be faced as such, never sugar-coated and renamed in some polite way such as "I was beside myself", or "I have a temper problem", or "That's just the way I am sometimes". No, it is sin and it must be confessed as such, put to death as such and the resources of God used to bring out its death and covering with the pardon and righteousness of Christ.
Now let me name what I think would be the best arrangement of resources to help any person with their sinful anger.
Wayne Mack, ANGER & STRESS MANAGEMENT GOD'S
WAY; P & R--a great resource from a biblical
counselor with many years experience helping
Wayne Mack, HOMEWORK MANUAL FOR BIBLICAL
LIVING (Personal and InterPersonal Problems);
P & R--great material dealing with anger and how
to replace angry thoughts with biblical thoughts.
And an important word: DO THE HOMEWORK !!!
Stuart Scott, ANGER, ANXIETY AND FEAR; Focus
Publications--deals with the underlying causes of
Paul David Tripp, WAR OF WORDS; P & R--how anger
does not have to be a part of how we speak to
others. Ending angry speech and argumentative
Chris Lundgaard, THE ENEMY WITHIN; P & R--a very
fine treatment of the reality of indwelling,
remaining sin in believers and how it works
Jerry Bridges, THE GOSPEL FOR REAL LIFE; NavPress
Jerry Bridges, THE BOOKENDS OF THE CHRISTIAN
These two books should be mastered by every
Christian and certainly every pastor. How does the
gospel apply to my daily sinning? How to keep from
becoming a victim of despair because of my sinning
or a victim of self-righteousness when I see some
WHAT ABOUT THOSE YOU ALREADY HURT ?
William Smith, HOW TO STOP LOSING IT WITH MY
KIDS; New Growth Press booklet
Edward Welch, LIVING WITH AN ANRY SPOUSE;
Michael Emlet, ANGRY CHILDREN; CCEF booklet
WHAT ABOUT MY LOCAL CHURCH ?
What about it? You do not sin in isolation. You do not live your Christian life in isolation. You should be a part of a local Christian fellowship, a church of Jesus Christ. You are no longer a loose election in a universe of your own making. You spent enough time living in that elusion. Speak with your pastor or an elder you trust and tell him of your sins, your need to put this sinful habit to death and ask for his prayers as you seek to follow Christ's word in putting sins to death.
Sin thrives when hidden. Sin never wants to be exposed to the light of God's truth. Having Christian leaders praying for you, holding your accountable and interfacing with you is what you need though remaining sin will resist it.
As you read through the epistles of the New Testament, have you ever realized that most of the times when the word "you" is used, it is used in the plural, "you all" we like to say in the South versus the singular "you" (just you and no one else). The Spirit inspired the biblical writers to address the local body of believers and their need together.
Do not try to live with your sins as a Lone Ranger facing down the enemies of truth, justice and the Christian way. Face your problems honestly, before God, before your family and before mature leaders in your local church.
May God give us all grace to put sinful anger to death and put on the fruit of the Spirit in its place.
Your Book Servant,
Pastor Steve Martin