The Near Myth of Righteous Anger


“Righteous anger” is nearly a myth among mortals. As someone stands on the edge of a cliff – needing only a nudge to lose his footing and plummet to the bottom – the human heart often stands right at the edge of anger and wrath.
Even a moment of righteous offense can be enough to provoke us to jump over the edge into sinful anger. When your heart says, “my anger is righteous,” beware. You are already hanging off the ledge, with only a finger tip grip; one nudge away from disaster.

God knows this about us so He lovingly exhorts us:

Ephesians 4:31 – Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice.

James 1:19-20 – This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.

Colossians 3:6-8 – For it is because of these things that the wrath of God will come upon the sons of disobedience, and in them you also once walked, when you were living in them. But now you also, put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth.

Summary: Put away your anger. It does not please God, and it is an insult to the One who absorbed God’s anger against you. It will make your problems worse. Anger is a whole person response; it captivates all of you. It’s because of sinful things like anger that the wrath of God is coming. Don’t be a fool, deceived by your pride which says, “My anger is right. I can handle it.” Step back from the edge before you plummet.

What to do: Look to Jesus as the Savior who saved you from God’s truly righteous anger and wrath. Agree with His word that your anger must be put away (put to death). Search in the Gospel for your hope and power to change this sinful response. Ask your church to help you repent and change by believing and practicing the truth.

Are you angry? There is hope for you. But you must act now. The fall is far and the bottom jagged.