“Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,” Ephesians 4:26
This has always been one of my favorite verses. I remember it often (although not always) when I get angry at someone or something.
As to the first part of the verse: We sometimes think anger as a negative emotion, something to avoid. Some have even been told or believe that anger itself is a sin.
Yet, like fear can be healthy (as I described in a previous post), so anger can be, too. It spurs us to act against injustice, bad behavior, and other sins. There are plenty of instances in scripture where God, Jesus, and many of his faithful acted in anger, and few could argue those acts were absolutely righteous and correct.
So how are we to know we don’t sin in our anger? One is to take a step back, to look upon the situation with our head as much as our heart. To ask any action helps or hurts the innocent, and does it glorify God.
That leads us to the second part.
It’s important to solve every disagreement as soon as feasible, or let go of an unsolvable issue before the sun sets, because when we don’t, that anger grows and festers.
As anyone who’s ever held a grudge (and that be all of us at one time or another), knows how it can harm and eventually ruin relationships.
We live in a time of anger, and too many of us are destroying our families and friendships over what amounts to very little in the grand and eternal scheme of things.
So if you find anger prowling around, even though it may be justified, make sure to show it the sunset before it digs its claws and teeth into your psyche.
4 thoughts on “Keeping an Eye on the Sunset”
Being a lawyer often puts me a position to help people resolve issues that are often very bothersome to my clients. However, I have had to deal with my own issues, where I have witnessed people committing sins, often by people who claim to be devote Christians. It is in the latter situations that I feel compelled by the Bible to confront the alleged Christian(s) with his or her sinful acts and seek that they admit to the sin and repent. But the problem becomes more serious, when the alleged Christian(s) refuse to admit to the sinful act and repent and the church chooses to believe the sinner over my observations, particularly when the sinner(s) are one or more of the leaders of the church. At that point, I believe I have to accept the decision of the church and just pray for the leaders and members of the church, given the destructive path the church has been put on by the leaders of the church. When dealing with sinners who do not proclaim to be a Christian, it is much easier for me to call out the sin and do so in such a manner that shows the sinner respect for who they are, while condemning the sin. I am open to any criticism you may have of my actions in such situations, as I subscribe to this blog to learn as much as to share my thoughts.
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I have no criticisms, because each instance is unique and requires a unique response. Some might see your comment as a bit judgy, but that’s because people keep misinterpreting “do not judge lest you be judged” in Matthew. You’re actually following scripture when it comes to rebuking Christians who sin (by first approaching them, and when they refuse to repent, by going to the church leaders). If (and when) the church does not respond according to scripture, that’s on the church leaders. You did your part, and that’s all God requires. You’re also right in that we need to approach non-Christians differently when we see their destructive behavior.
Thank You! I did a lot of researching the issue, talking to God (praying), and soul searching before making any decisions on the matter and before dealing with the church leaders on the matter. It was not pleasant, as in addition to wanting to do what was right by God, in the process I was accused of being the sinner by at least one of the church leaders who implied I was motivated by bad intentions. I had expected that would likely be the church’s response, but decided God expected me to proceed, so I proceeded knowing it would likely put my relationship with the church in a precarious situation. I am thankful to God as He prepared me in advance for the result, as I believe in Revelations, He prophecies (I understand God is the author of the Book of Revelations) that the vast majority of the leaders of Christian churches end up leading their members away from God by allowing the earthly things to affect their decisions on how to handle their Godly responsibilities. They have a very difficult job at times and like most people they appear to give in to their personal earthly desires that allow them to avoid having to deal with the unpleasantness of their Godly responsibilities. They need to be prayed for by their church members and supervised by their members to aid in the process of keeping them on track with being obedient to their Godly responsibilities. However, too few members know that, because too many church leaders do not tell their members about the obligation of church members to supervise their church leaders, and, in many situations, the church leaders tell their members the exact opposite by telling their members they have to trust them and do as they say, given their training and relationship with God. Claiming and believing you have that kind of power over people is not good, as it is not respectful, humble, or righteous.
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Which is why I always keep my eyes and ears open and ask one question: Do church leaders stress that the body continuously reads/studies the Bible, or their interpretation of it.