Two Types of Anger

Every Wednesday I have the privilege of teaching children the Word of God. This is adapted from my study for the this blog.

Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil. Ephesians 4:26-27

Be nice. It is the sentiment of our culture these days. In fact, the thought of being angry for any reason is wrong. Yet this passage gives us an anger that is not sinful. I would like to highlight two different types of anger.

The first type of anger is sinful. It fits into the list of sins in Galatians 5:20 that people who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. We can say that it is the temperament of some to be short and more easily angered but it is also the sign of an unsaved person. The sign of someone who is an angry man, woman, or child is evidenced by hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, envy, murders, and revelries. Let us ask ourselves about how often these are evidenced in our lives? We might be apt to look at murder and focus on the big stuff but what about contention, outbursts, or revelries? Revelries are speaking evil of other people. These are all evidences of an unholy and ungodly person.

The Bible declares an angry person as proud, foolish, and unrighteous. A proud and haughty man- “Scoffer” is his name; He acts with arrogant pride. Proverbs 21:24. Webster’s dictionary defines scoffer is someone who “shows contempt by derisive acts or language. In other words laughs at others in mocking or ungodly manner. The Bible also reveals someone who is easily angered is foolish. Ecclessiastes 7:9 also says that anger rests in the “bosom” of fools. Again in Proverbs; “He who is slow to wrath has great understanding, But he who is impulsive exalts folly (14:29).” Wrath or anger forces us to make poor decisions based off of our emotions. It is impulsive behavior that gets us into trouble. James also tells us that the wrath of man does not accomplish the righteousness of God. As a Christian we should avoid such behavior.

Examples of Unrighteous Anger:
Cain (Genesis 4)
Saul (1 Samuel 18:1-16)
Stephen’s Death (Acts 7:54-60)

The second type of anger is righteous anger. This is anger in regards to sin and ungodliness. The fear of the LORD is to hate evil; Pride and arrogance and the evil way and the perverse mouth I hate” Proverbs 8:13. Being angry at sin is being described here. It is what every Christian should feel towards evil. Rather than being angered from a sin nature we should be angered toward ungodliness in ourselves.

God is also angered by sin. Just do a study on anger and you will find that God is not happy with ungodliness. This doesn’t justify being upset at people or to be a constantly wrathful person toward sinners. For even God is slow to anger and abounding love Psalms 103:8. God was even long suffering toward us that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us. Though anger can be present in a Christian it should be few and far between.

Examples of Righteous Anger:
Moses (Exodus 32:15-35)
Jesus (Mark 3:1-6)

The Ephesians gives a remedy for anger. It gives us two things to avoid. The first is to avoid the sun going down and the second is giving place to the devil. This only reminds me of Cain’s life as mentioned in the examples earlier. Having continued anger really creates bitterness and on going strife. If not dealt with we give place to the devil and worst things might arise.

Here is a short poem I wrote for my class to help illustrate anger for them.

Little Joy was so smart
She was gifted at art
and she loved to make things
with colors that happiness brings

Though her name was Joy
If you asked any girl or boy
Would say that she’s mean
and her happiness yet to be seen

She was fighting and biting
It was always a terrible sighting
When seen by Mom and Dad
She would lie to not look so bad

But both Mom and Dad knew
What she said was not true
And Joy was in trouble
which lying made double

Even though she was caught
Anger again was her thought
For she would do it again
It was only a matter of when

But because of her anger
Joy was a big danger
That she soon had no friend
But wait, this is not the end

Joy soon became sad
everyone knew she was bad
And when she would draw
Few people were happy for what they saw

She wanted to be kind
But it seemed hard to find
Until she heard someone say
that anger was sin on display

Joy learned about sin
God’s judgment toward men
who practice such things
that God’s judgement it brings

Then she heard about Jesus
Who being God came to free us
From sins such as anger
by becoming a babe in a manger

He lived without sin
Which was required to win
Over sin and the grave
And died for those He would save

But He did not stay dead
As the scripture has said
Three days later He rose
Revealing himself to those He chose

Then Joy saw her wrong
It didn’t take long
To confess her sin with sadness
And soon filled with forgiven and gladness

Soon Joy became kind
Her anger non could find
And with God’s love she mends
those relationships with friends