WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
JULY 20, 2022
TOPIC: BEWARE OF UNCONTROLLED ANGER
BY T. O. BANSO
“You know this, my dearly-loved brethren. But let every one be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to be angry. For a man’s anger does not lead to action which God regards as righteous” (James 1:19-20 Weymouth’s New Testament).
Anger is a natural emotion that people experience from time to time. However, it poses a serious problem when it is uncontrolled. It creates relational problems among family members. Uncontrolled parental anger could cause, in children, a loss of self-esteem, fearfulness, rudeness, aggressiveness, lack of concentration, and sleep disorder.
In addition to destroying relationships, uncontrolled anger, research has shown, has long-term negative effects on people’s health. It increases stress and causes, among other things, headaches, high blood pressure, increased anxiety, indigestion, insomnia, depression, stroke, and heart disease.
It is unavoidable that some things will, sometimes, arouse your anger, but don’t lose control of yourself to anger. If you lose control, you will suffer the consequences. Proverbs 27:4a says that wrath is cruel, and anger is a torrent. In other words, anger is a flood; it is overwhelming or outrageous. You must manage or control your anger.
People get angry for different reasons. Esau was angry when his younger, brother, Jacob, deceived his father to get the blessing his father meant for him. He threatened to kill Esau. His mother, Rebekah, was informed about Esau’s threat and she told Jacob, “Now therefore, my son, obey my voice: arise, flee to my brother Laban in Haran. And stay with him a few days, until your brother’s fury turns away, until your brother’s anger turns away from you, and he forgets what you have done to him; then I will send and bring you from there. Why should I be bereaved also of you both in one day?” (Genesis 27:43-45 New King James Version).
Consequently, Jacob fled to Haran. This was what saved his life and equally saved Esau from becoming a murderer. Some people are in prison today because they committed murder when they couldn’t control their anger. Do you control your anger or act in anger like Saul who cast his spear at his son, Jonathan, to kill him when he was angry? (1 Samuel 20:30-33)
The words people say to you can make you angry. Proverbs 15:1b says a harsh word stirs up anger. But don’t respond in anger, otherwise, you will regret later what you’ve said or done. Leave the place or suspend the conversation until your anger has calmed down. When you resume discussion, you may be surprised that the person who provoked your anger could apologize to you. Even if the person doesn’t, you would have saved yourself from taking the wrong action because of anger.
You can also be angry because you have heard reports of what someone has done, as was in the case of Joseph’s master, Potiphar. But you must be careful and control your anger, particularly because the reports may or may not be true. Potiphar’s wife lied to her husband that Joseph came in to mock or rape her and Potiphar acted in anger by putting Joseph in prison. There is no record that he investigated the allegation.
Genesis 39:19-20 says, “So it was, when his master heard the words which his wife spoke to him, saying, ‘Your servant did to me after this manner,’ that his anger was aroused. Then Joseph’s master took him and put him into the prison, a place where the king’s prisoners were confined. And he was there in the prison” (New King James Version).
The report or news you have heard may make you angry but control your anger so that you don’t take the wrong action. In 1 Samuel 11, Saul, who had been chosen as king of Israel, was angry when he heard the news of what Nahash the Ammonite wanted to do to the men of Jabesh Gilead. Nahash said he would make a covenant with them on the condition that he would put out all their right eyes, and bring reproach on all Israel (verse 2).
Verses 6-7a say, “Then the Spirit of God came upon Saul when he heard this news, and his anger was greatly aroused. So he took a yoke of oxen and cut them in pieces, and sent them throughout all the territory of Israel by the hands of messengers, saying, ‘Whoever does not go out with Saul and Samuel to battle, so it shall be done to his oxen’” (New King James Version).
Saul’s action made the Israelites come out together as one. In a surprise attack, the Israelites, who were led by Saul, killed the Ammonites and, thus, saved Jabesh Gilead. Saul controlled his anger and directed it towards the right action. Uncontrolled anger will lead to destructive actions. Avoid it.
Furthermore, you can be angry with people when they do not do what you expect from them. Balak was angry with Balaam whose services he had secured to curse the Israelites but, instead, he blessed them three times. “Then Balak’s anger was aroused against Balaam, and he struck his hands together; and Balak said to Balaam ‘I called you to curse my enemies, and look, you have bountifully blessed them these three times! Now therefore, flee to your place. I said I would greatly honor you, but in fact, the LORD has kept you back from honor’” (Numbers 24:10-11 New King James Version).
However, it wasn’t Balaam’s fault that he didn’t curse the Israelites. God forbade him to speak anything other than what He told him (Numbers 22:20, 35; 23:12, 26; 24:12-13). Control your anger. You may not know why people couldn’t do what you expected of them. Calm down. Find out. It may be beyond their control. But, whatever the case, don’t let anger control you; control it.
Also in 1 Samuel 17:28, David’s brother, Eliab was angry against David without any justification. He accused him wrongly of coming to see the battle because of his pride and insolence. “Now Eliab his oldest brother heard when he spoke to the men; and Eliab’s anger was aroused against David, and he said, ‘Why did you come down here? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your pride and the insolence of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle’” (1 Samuel 17:28 New King James Version).
However, Eliab’s accusation was not true. David’s father sent him to give his three older brothers in the military camp of Israel an ephah of dried grain and ten loaves. He also asked him to give ten pieces of cheese to the captain of their thousand, see how his brothers fared, and bring back news of them (1 Samuel 17:13, 17-18). But his eldest brother was angry and accused him wrongly. As it eventually happened, Saul, David’s brothers, and all in the army of Israel watched helplessly as David killed Goliath, the Philistine champion, that all of them couldn’t fight. God was at work in David’s life when his father sent him on that errand.
Uncontrolled anger can make you accuse others wrongly and jump to the wrong conclusions. But if you control your anger, the issues can become clearer to you or you can understand others better.
Emulate God and be slow to anger (Psalm 103:8; 145:8; Nahum 1:3; Joel 2:13). Even when God is angry, it is always against evil. He also doesn’t keep His anger forever (Psalm 103:9; Micah 7:18). Emulate God. Proverbs 16:32 says he who is slow to anger is better than the mighty and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.
Similarly, Proverbs 19:11 says the discretion of a man makes him slow to anger and his glory is to overlook a transgression. Don’t be a fool! “Do not hasten in your spirit to be angry, for anger rests in the bosom of fools” (Ecclesiastes 7:9 New King James Version).
Be slow to anger and control your anger. Quoting from Psalm 4:4a, the Apostle Paul warned, “Be angry, and do not sin” (Ephesians 4:26a New King James Version). He said you should not let the sun go down on your wrath or give place to the devil (Ephesians 4:26b-27).
Also, the Apostle James warned, “You know this, my dearly-loved brethren. But let every one be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to be angry. For a man’s anger does not lead to action which God regards as righteous” (James 1:19-20 Weymouth’s New Testament).
Put off anger, along with other sins (Colossians 3:8-9). As Ephesians 4:31 also says, you should put away from you all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, evil speaking, and malice. If you will take heed to this message, you will save yourself the consequences of uncontrolled anger, which many are suffering today.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner, and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner, and I cannot save myself. I believe Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and was raised on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: I forgive everyone who has proved me to anger up till now in Jesus’ name. Father, forgive me for my uncontrolled anger in the past. Holy Spirit, deliver me from uncontrolled anger. I shall not hasten in my spirit to be angry, for anger rests in the bosom of fools. I shall not allow uncontrolled anger to rule me and make me act like a fool. I shall be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to be angry in Jesus’ name.
(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
WhatsApp No: +2349081295947