by: Creflo Dollar
If you are like most people, you experience moments when you get angry or frustrated about the circumstances of life. Long lines at the grocery store, high gas prices, traffic, bad cell phone reception and disrespect from others are all things that can drive you over the edge if they happen at the wrong time.
I remember one afternoon my wife, Taffi, and I went to the movies. As we were sitting in the theater, I opened my cell phone to see what time it was. Suddenly I felt a hard, sharp tap on my shoulder. I turned around and it was the man sitting behind me, who demanded that I put away my cell phone because the light from the display screen was distracting him from the movie. It wasn’t so much the fact that he asked me to put away my cell phone, it was the way he hit me on my shoulder. I got so angry and I wanted to tell him a thing or two! But I had to remember to walk in love, which caused me to think about the issue of anger.
Usually when someone talks about anger or getting angry, it is talked about in a negative way. When you were growing up, you were probably told that it was a bad thing to get angry. You may have heard scriptures like “Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil” (Psalm 37:8), or Ephesians 4:26 which says, “Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath….” My encounter with the man at the movie theater is an example of how anger can easily move a person out of the will of God. I could have reacted out of anger, but instead I chose to calm my anger and respond to him in love.
Every human being is at some point challenged with feelings of anger. However, can anger ever move you in a direction toward righteousness? Would God ever condone it? Does He ever get angry? I believe the answer to these questions is yes, and that there are times that He does.
The American Heritage Dictionary defines the word anger as “a strong emotion or belligerence aroused by a real or supposed wrong.” There is a difference between appropriate and inappropriate anger, and the Bible says that there were some people whose anger was indeed appropriate. When Moses went to Mount Sinai to receive the Ten Commandments from God, the Israelites began having a party and worshipping other gods. By the time Moses came down from the mountain and saw all the chaos, he became so angry that he smashed the tablets into pieces because of their lawlessness. In Mark 11, Jesus became angry when He saw the moneychangers buying and selling in the temple, so He turned over their tables and drove them out.
Any time anger moves you into selfishness and out of the love of God, it is always inappropriate anger. But if you are a Believer, there are things that should anger you. Sin, poverty, lawlessness, debt, injustice and lack of faith are just some of the things that anger God, and they should anger you too. Righteous anger is always designed to motivate you to do something about sin and unrighteousness.
The reason you may not have experienced victory over the enemy in some areas could be because you have had a mild irritation over what he is doing in your life, rather than a form of anger that prompts you to do something to change the situation. When you get angry enough about debt, you’ll do something about it. When you get angry enough about sickness, you’ll do something about it. But as long as you tolerate it, you will stay in bondage.
With so much going on in the world today, there are plenty of justifiable reasons for Believers to be angry. When you allow your anger to move you toward positive action for God, then real change will come about in your life and you will truly leave a mark in the lives of others that cannot be erased.
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