SermonIndex Audio Sermons
Image Map
Discussion Forum : General Topics : The Sin of Anger

Print Thread (PDF)

Goto page ( 1 | 2 Next Page )

Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7472

 The Sin of Anger

Brothers and Sisters,

I have a question for you, one whose answer seems so elusive to us. Perhaps someone here on this forum is skilled in this areaa who could come alongside with words of wisdom?

The question: How do you deal with an angry person?

Usually when someone has this problem, you may steer clear of them, keep your distance, or whatever. But in my case these are no possibilities: this person is too close to us. My DH does not know either. It is as though the lion roared and we are paralyzed. This person is very religious and if you were to confront her, she might even admit it and be ever so meek and apologize. It is as though she is two different persons. And neither one bears any resemblance to the other. Anyhow, after apologizing she may be so very sweet, but you just give her some time and soon she will be off again. (This happened just recently.) Her sin of anger has offended young people and caused a lot of distress.

How do you handle a situation like this?


Sandra Miller

 2007/6/6 21:56Profile

 Re: Zac gives good answers.

I'm sorry I can't post URLs properly.

Greg just posted this and it's wonderful.

We're all growing sis. Here and everywhere.

We're all praying for wisdom.

 2007/6/6 22:14

 Re: The Sin of Anger

Hi ginnyrose,

I note all you have said about this situation which you have been able to share.

My main response may not be what you expect, and I'm prepared for you to reject my testimony, but I hope it may, at least, draw on scripture to give you another perserpctive.

First. I simply want to share a few of my discoveries over the course of dealing with my own anger, over many years. My family took the approach that anger was wrong. it was never 'Why are you angry?', but 'Don't be angry', even if there was good cause to be angry and the adults in my life had caused it.

Ephesians 6:4
And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

As we are made in the image of God, and He Himself has been angry many times already, and intends to pour out His wrath on unbelievers, we know that [i]being angry[/i], is not, of itself, sinful.

What I think you are referring to by your title, is the damage caused by misplaced anger which overflows inappropriately in various ways.

The inappropriateness is not only about the quantity of anger, or its free expression, but whether it is unloaded on people who had no part in its causation, who may resent being implicated or hurt or frightened, or also rendereed speechless, or angered by unreasonable outbursts.

My healing from suppressed anger, came in several ways. First, I read and heard about suppressed anger. I had so contained mine, that I was totally unaware I was concealing it even from myself. This is not to say I was not angry at times, but those were the overflows of an abundant heart, and I burned in them.

Coming from a Christian background, I was completely sure that anger was 'wrong' until I began to think about what the Bible said about it. Firstly, I realised it was God-like to be angry.

Ephesians 4:26
Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:

It is clear from this verse that it is ok to be angry within limits.

I would add that the anger which burns the longest is God's anger, and righteous indignation may be a component of 'reasonable' anger, which may be acknowledged in the mix.

Causes of anger cannot be ignored, denied or minismised, without the angry person being compelled to continue attempting to contain their anger, to their further detriment.

Here is one Godly reason for anger.

Numbers 25:11
Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, hath turned my wrath away from the children of Israel, while he was zealous for my sake among them, that I consumed not the children of Israel in [u]my jealousy[/u].

I suggest it's likely the same mechanism works in humans. Can this sort of provokation be avoided?

The next verse shows that 'wrath' can pass a point of no return.

2 Chron 36:16
But they mocked the messengers of God, and despised his words, and misused his prophets, [u]until the wrath of the LORD arose[/u] against his people, till [i]there was[/i] no remedy.

{remedy: Heb. healing}


 2007/6/7 1:52

 Re: The Sin of Anger


It is also important to note that His jealousy is particularly aroused against His [u]own[/u] people - the ones with whom He has a relationship, desires a relationship and intends to maintain that relationship in the condition He esteems it should be enjoyed.... ie those closest to Him. Likewise, we tend to be our most openly irritable and irritated with those we know best.

I think the possibility of this has to be acknowledged. If God Himself can be so angry there is no remedy but the expression of it, then finite humans may well, also, fail to contain theirs.

But, the expression of anger brings a kind of comfort to the person who was angry:

Esther 2:1
After these things, [u]when the wrath of king Ahasuerus was appeased[/u], he remembered Vashti...

Here, God does not intend to hold back His wrath...

Ezekiel 5:13
Thus shall mine anger be accomplished, and I will cause my fury to rest upon them, [u]and I will be comforted[/u]: and they shall know that I the LORD have spoken [i]it[/i] in my zeal, when I have accomplished my fury in them.

Ezekiel 13:15
Thus will I accomplish My wrath on the wall ...

[accomplish = complete, or spend]

Of course, we are told not to take revenge into our own hands, in Romans 12:19, but to leave room for God to avenge us. This strongly implies that it is reasonable to be angry, and it is balanced against Romans 13:4. which gives permission for 'wrath' to be executed on God's behalf, on evil-doers.

It is also worth accepting the radical truth that the expression of God's anger also consoles Him somewhat, as king Ahasuerus also was consoled. To deny this, is to misread the angry person in your life, who may be so angry all the time, that the only time they can be calm, is by giving themself permission to express their anger also, like a valve in a pressure cooker. Indeed, this is what they may feel like, if the cause(s) of their anger have never been acknowledged.

My anger was related to having been humiliated, way back and many times. One's natural instinct to spontaneously right oneself after such incidents, draws on an instinctive pride to keep trying to be ok - which God Himself has given us. He has also given us the ability to go numb, when internalised pain has been so longstanding that it is not possible to retiain knowledge of it consciously, without losing one's mind. Naturally (again), one strives for sanity, and He graciously permits this choice.

It is a huge problem for angry people, who have long lost any way of defining the cause of their anger, to find themself in Christian circles where there is a culture of condemning anger [i]per se[/i]. In this case, it will [i]never[/i] be ok for them to remember - the stage which for me came [i]after[/i] the numbness had begun to thaw out. It is true that I had, by then, experienced a huge reduction in external pressures, such that internal pressures could begin to draw attention to themselves.

This is interesting:

Ecclesiast. 7:3
Sorrow [i]is[/i] better than laughter: for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better[/u].

{Sorrow: or, Anger}

In a nutshell, I'm suggesting there is something important beyond the anger itself, such as a provokation to understand. It may be like the thorn in the lion's paw, but buried deep inside.

I also know there can be evil spirits which show themselves in outbursts of unreaonable anger, which may not be related to inner wounds. But if there [i]are[/i] inner wounds, then such spirits may also have a foothold in the life and will lose this foothold if the internal pain is addressed.

However, like the thorn in the paw, approaching it in such a way as to cause no more pain may require not only courage and patience, but spiritual insight and faith that God is leading and can bring healing. And, a significant network of practical support both for those who help, and for the person who needs the help, may be needed.

It would be tempting to make the anger the centre of attention, and it must be, to some extent, initially; but while a certain level of control may be required from the angry person - such as to develop anger management techniques for the benefit of those who must endure the outbursts - I believe this should not be overlaid with condemnation for their underlying anger.

It is probably going to be a work of the art of not shouting back, to help the person to hear themselves behaving unreasonably.

It is a different challenge, to create an enviroment in which all steps have been take to protect the vulnerable from further hurt (by the anger), at the same time as maintaining enough pressure for the person to begin to hear how she sounds to others.

For myself, once I'd realised just how much anger I was carrying around all the time, it was only a matter of time before I would have to give it to the Lord. This giving took some courage, but by then I was desperate because I couldn't keep holding it in.

But, I had been quite shocked at this discovery about myself. I had had no idea I was [i]complicit[/i] in carrying this much anger - let alone the pain of containing it!

On the day that I gave it to the Lord, a truly miraculous process began, in which I could feel that He was doing something in my depths, but I was silenced by being able to 'feel' it all at the same time. Slowly, over a period of several hours, He took it all, and I was free. Now (it turned out), I could respond with a normal level of appropriately directed displeasure when this was necessary, and the rest of the time I was in peace. There were other healings to come, also, but not from anger any more.

I think the main thing I would like you to take from these posts, is that unless there is an acceptance that anger is a natural response in certain situations, [u]given by God as part of human make-up[/u], any ways of addressing [i]causes[/i] of anger meanningfuly, remain out of reach.

There [i]are[/i] ways of dealing with angry people, beginning with giving permission for them to be angry.... but [i]not[/i] to be angry the way they have expressed it hitherto which is undermining to their testimony and socially unacceptable by any standard.

There is, though, some safety for some people in laying their anger on others - that is, in turning it outwards - because it enables the demonstrated amount of anger to be assessed.

Whereas, if it is all turned inwards, the severity of the need may be both invisible and ignorable, including being damaging to the one carrying it, and encouraging also, [i]their denial[/i].

 2007/6/7 2:23

Joined: 2004/10/13
Posts: 2132

 Re: The Sin of Anger

Rom 16:17 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.


 2007/6/7 7:09Profile

Joined: 2005/5/2
Posts: 3776

 Re:How to deal with an angry person

How do you deal with an angry person?

Ginnyrose, It’s tempting to play internet “shrink” on someone we know nothing about and who cannot partake in the discussion. So I will avoid that.

I find it interesting that God puts people in our lives who we can’t shake out. We can’t avoid them. They are thorns in the side. From my own experience over the years, I have come to believe that the actual person God wishes to deal with is MYSELF. He uses the thorns to soften me, change me, and give me a better perspective of his ways. So prayer would be a good starting place – not only for the “problem person”, but also for yourself – to be open to what God may be wishing to show you.

Since anger of the nature you describe likely has its origin many sundowns ago, and is lost to the person trapped in it, you can do little to fix the person. It’s not about something that happened this morning which you could have addressed. And it’s most likely not related to you at all. So keep your responses soft and gentle.

You can, however, set some limits in your relationship. You don’t have to allow yourself to be the whipping post. It is fair to gently share how YOU feel when those episodes occur - without any accusational overtones. (wait till the air is calm, though) I see nothing wrong with adding that you may need to step away during those times, because it troubles YOU.

Above all commit this person to prayer. That is perhaps the best gift you can give that person. God is the best therapist/healer around.

God bless you Ginnyrose, and may he give you a strength and courage to love, free from fear.

Some years ago I wrote [url=]Why are you Angry?[/url] really for my own sake. As I browse through it, I see nothing too helpful to you, but just perhaps there may be a crumb or two.



 2007/6/7 8:00Profile


Dohzman, you are misapplying this verse, I believe.

I will hi-lite the key part of that verse:

Rom 16:17 [i]Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offenses [b]contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned[/b]; and avoid them.[/i]

Ginny has told us about a person who can not control their anger, but said nothing about her causing offenses contrary to correct doctrine.

Offenses spoken of in scripture are not "oh, they offended me" like we think of today. Offenses are things that cause people to stumble, or turn away from the truth.

This is not what this situation is about.


 2007/6/7 8:03

Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7472



Thanks for posting that link. I will listen to it.


You made some very good points about anger, e.g., God gets angry at sin. The Bible also tells us to be angry and sin not. I understand this type of anger. Our sense of justice has been violated and so we respond but do not sin in your response.

You also mentioned about the possibility of something that may have happened in the past which caused severe woundedness and now this person is acting out her anger on others. This is a very real possibility. Some of us have often talked about this and wonder.

I have confronted her already about her attitudes and all that did was unleash a stream of anger, rage, the like one never desires to ever hear and wants to flee from. In fact, you cannot even reason with her when she is angry! It is impossible! Fortunately, she does not get violent physically, but her words are very hurtful and abusive. And when one does what dohzman suggested, she gets angry again. In other words she wants to be close to people and when her angry mood strikes she wants to have the privilege to hurt people without suffering the consequences and you are supposed to take it without any reactions.

Then you also have the sin of lying to deal with. When this person gets in a rage, lies will spew forth. But these lies are not said only while in a rage, but otherwise as well. While this person is always very careful about being accurate - and is - there are areas in her life she will lie about, things that others know to be otherwise because they have been witnesses.

I sense there is a problem of demonic possession, but I do not want to get involved in it exorcism - this is a man's job. And would you know, only two males that I know of have ever seen a demonstration of her anger. Just recently a larger body of people saw it - for the very first time. Up to this point, all they had to go by was what a few females have been saying. It was as though they did not believe us, or rather found it hard to do so because she is always so sweet when they come around. Yet the act that was witnessed recently was a mild form of it.

So there you have it!

Now I need to listen to the sermon Grannie suggested. In the meantime if there are any more words of wisdom out there, please share. Or, if you want you may PM me.

Thanks Annie, Dorcas, dohzman for your responses...


Sandra Miller

 2007/6/7 8:10Profile


Hi ginnyrose,
I like your attitude of being open to other's posts. I liked all the posts - I liked Diane's too.

You put a new light on a subject about "this woman".

If it had just been anger --- that is something I think was explained above by Greg's post from Zac Poonen and the replies above --- except that the only thing that was left-out was "physical causes". There are 'many' diseases that cause folks to go off in not the nicest ways - voice of experience on that one. Having worked with folks in that area and experienced it first hand from health problems and only GOD can heal those type things.

But now you've added "lying".

That changes the whole picture and 'that' needs to be addressed.

Anger is one thing --- Lying is the worst sin I believe and once someone lies - I truly feel that person needs to be spoken to face to face.
Or at least written to, if there's a geographical distance between folks.

Whomever it is, I think Jesus would have us to speak this or any fellow 'christian', if we see them in such a way as you see this woman.
Matthew talks about going to them first yourself, then take two, etc..


 2007/6/7 11:18

Joined: 2004/10/13
Posts: 2132


There's a whole lot more there than a surface reading. Doctrine thats godly is lived out in life, scripture like a good and gentle spirit .... or the meek will.... or a soft answer.... if what we profess doesn't condition all we say and do "in" life than its vain and empty and the God of All grace can not save us from anything. If an individuals misconduct causes another to turn away from the faith than they have lived thier doctrine falsely. There is a possibility that this individual with the anger problem has just never been taught proper ethical christianity. In context those who went with thier belly (the verses following) are individuals who are controled by thier animal instincts and Paul said to rebuke them sharply---Titus 1:12-14. On the surface it may appear out of context but just think about it prayerfully, read some of the early writtings and you'll see where I'm coming from. If one excuses anger than lust lieing fornication and all manner of sins needs to be made allowances for. Anger can also be the flower of an even bigger root like bitterness, envy or strife. So I said that to say this: correct doctrine is lived doctrine, doctrine is simply teaching. So lets all be angry and sin not, or not let the sun go down on our wrath or the wrath of....fill in the name.... works not the righteousness of God, get my drift? That's doctrine.


 2007/6/7 13:14Profile

Promoting Genuine Biblical Revival.
Affiliate Disclosure | Privacy Policy