(Ephesians 4:26) “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.
Anger is an emotion and not necessarily a sin. God can’t sin, but he gets angry. Most everyone can attest to the fact that anger is dangerous and can potentially lead to sin. Other emotions like love for instance can affect our reasoning ability. Love can make us silly and whimsical, while anger can make us aggressive and violent. Our enemy is prowling around looking for an opportunity to lead us into sin (see 1Peter 5:8). Our anger looks like an invitation.
Anger can cause us to think, say, or do things we would never do under normal conditions. So when anger arises, it should be a red light of warning. I have many times allowed my anger to get out of control, most often with disastrous results. Now when I recognize myself getting angry, the caution flag comes up, and the battle for control is on.
You’ve probably heard people say count to ten before you react. That’s great advice, but I frequently need more time. The Apostle Paul teaches us to take every thought captive (see 2Corintians 10:5). He goes on to say in that verse to make those thoughts obedient to Christ. That in itself is a challenge, yet it is a great reminder of where the strength to take those thoughts captive comes from. Anger is a strong emotion, and we need help to control it. Jesus has sent the Holy Spirit to help us.
We could do a whole seminar on the subject of anger, however today we are just touching on the task of controlling it. Being angry, controlling that anger, and avoiding letting that anger become sin, affords good results like peaceful relationships, less stress, and returning to loving one another. These are things worth fighting for. We need to do the battle, and win the victory of obedience to Christ. In the long run I know we’ll be glad we did.