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Thoughts From Ephesians Thought # 34-How To Live Out Your New Identity (Eph. 4:25-32) -Replace Unrighteous Anger with Righteous Anger

by Larry Miles

25 Therefore, putting away lying, Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor,” for we are members of one another. 26 “Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, 27 nor give [a]place to the devil. 28 Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need. 29 Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary [b]edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, [c]clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. 32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.  

    This text is an echo of Psalm 4:4. The  Word of God allows a certain type of anger; which one might call righteous indignation. Righteous anger can be defined “holy anger against sin.”

   Christians must feel anger. We should hate sin like  God does. David wrote, “Hot  indignation seizes me because of the wicked, who forsake your law.” (Psalm 119:53 ESV) Jesus, Himself expressed righteous indignation when  He turned over the tables in the temple.

   Paul gives us three reminders  to make sure we keep our anger holy.

  1. The first  is “don’t  sin” (verse 26)
  2. Next, Paul says, “Don’t let the sun go down on your anger.”
  3. The last one is: “Don’t give the Devil and opportunity.”

Someone wrote this, “Don’t  go to bed with unresolved conflict or else you sleep with the devil.” Another person wrote this: “Always seek forgiveness and reconciliation; Satan would love to use your anger as an opportunity to make you  divisive.”

 

Larry Miles is Co-Editor of Word & Work and attends Cherry St. Church of Christ in New Albany, IN.

 




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If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.

Romans 14:8