Tuesday, March 2, 2010



Ephesians 4:26-31 "In your anger do not sin": Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, (27) and do not give the devil a foothold. (28) He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need. (29) Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. (30) And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. (31) Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.


The Bible doesn't tell us that we shouldn't feel angry, but it points out that it is important to handle our anger properly. If vented thoughtlessly, anger can hurt others and destroy relationships. If bottled up inside, it can cause us to become bitter and destroy us from within. Paul tells us to deal with our anger immediately in a way that builds relationships rather than destroys them. If we nurse our anger, we will give the devil an opportunity to divide us. Are you angry with someone right now? What can you do to resolve your differences? Don't let the day end before you begin to work on mending your relationship.

We can bring sorrow to the Holy Spirit by the way we live. Paul warns us against unwholesome language, bitterness, improper use of anger, harsh words, slander, and bad attitudes toward others. Instead of acting that way, we should be forgiving, just as God has forgiven us. Are you bringing sorrow or pleasing God with your attitudes and actions? Act in love toward your brothers and sisters in Christ, just as God acted in love by sending his Son to die for your sins.


This passage has always been very challenging to me. It deals with the three "Do Not's" of anger: Do not SIN in your anger; Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry with a person; do not give the devil a foothold. Then it goes on to talk about the change that MUST come when you give your life to Jesus. When you become a new creature in Christ. You don't just "dress up" your old life, or put "lipstick on a caterpillar" (See yesterday's blog). You die to your old life and way of doing things. I act different, I talk different, the purpose of my words are different. I have a deep awareness that I can grieve the precious Holy Spirit of God.

Verse 31 spoke deeply in to my heart this morning. "Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice." There are some things in my life that I need to GET RID OF.

I need to get rid of anger. It will only make me a bitter, revengeful, fruitless person. Listen, "Neither give place to the devil" (Ephesians 4:27). The first territory the enemy wants to take is your home, because that's the seat of your power. Don't let him! "But I've reason to be angry," you say. So did Joseph. Yet he fed those who imprisoned him and blessed those who betrayed him. In so doing, he was set free from his anger. Later when he had two sons, he called the first Manasseh, meaning, "God has made me forget all my troubles." (Genesis 41:51). Would Joseph have become great if he'd gone back to seek revenge? No! He fulfilled his destiny and enjoyed God's favour, because he controlled his emotions. He called his second son Ephraim, meaning "God has made me fruitful in this land of my suffering" (Genesis 41:52). Your anger will subside when you start to see, that in spite of all you've been through, God has continued to bless you.

I need to get rid of unforgiveness and bitterness. If I do not forgive, I will become bitter. You see without forgiveness, bitterness is all that's left! There comes a point at which anger is no longer just an emotion - it's a driving force. Like cocaine, you need larger and more frequent doses. Once that happens, you move even further from forgiveness, because without your anger you've no source of energy at all. It's what drives hate groups like the KKK and the Skinheads. Without bitterness they've no reason to exist! If you take bigotry from the racist, revenge from the zealot and chauvinism from the sexist, what's left?

God says, "Forgive anyone who does you wrong… as Christ has forgiven you," because bitterness is fatal. It kills your soul. So how do you stop yourself from becoming bitter when you've been hurt? By looking into the face of the one who hurt you, and instead seeing the face of the One who showed you mercy when nobody else would've given you another chance!

I need to get rid of becoming easily offended. You can change the course of a day Satan has negative plans for, by spending time with the Lord, especially when you sense any attitude or behaviour in yourself that's not Christ-like. Jesus said, 'without Me you can do nothing.' (John 15:5). On the other hand, 'I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me' (Philippians 4:13). Negative feelings are like unwelcome house guests: the worst thing you can do is to invite them in. You may not be able to override them in your own strength, but if you seek God's help He will enable you to walk according to His ways, not by your negative emotions and perspective. 'But what if someone offends me?' The Bible says we're not to be oversensitive or easily offended. Actually we are commanded to forgive those who hurt us, not letting things fester. Sometimes we want to forgive and do what's right, but we find doing it difficult. More often than not, the right thing is the hard thing to do, not the easy thing. That's when you need to pray and allow God to talk to you through His Word. Only then will you find the strength to do the right thing.

Why don't you take a moment and ask the Holy Spirit, "What do I need to get rid of today?" When you ask Him, take a moment to listen. He will let you know, then ask the Lord to help you get rid of that thing(s) that comes to your mind.


"Lord, search my heart today. See if there be any wicked way within me. Help me to see things that I need to get rid of. As You bring them to my mind, I will repent of it and put it under the blood. Thank you Lord, for what you are doing within me. In Jesus name, amen!"