Are You Angry At The Right Thing?



I woke up, blurry-eyed, and snuck quietly into the living room to do my morning devotions before the kids woke up.  But before I started I shot off a quick text, apologizing to Derek for the night before.  I had gotten angry at him for something, and yes, I'm admitting right now that we don't always resolve arguments before we go to bed.  This case is a good example why - they night before I was furious, and felt perfectly justified in my anger.  When the morning came, I realized what a "contentious women" I was really being (and if you've ever read Proverbs, you know that is not a good thing).

Appropriately, after reading the day's passage in the Bible, I opened up Matthew Henry's Commentary, and this is what I read:


"The way to be angry, and not to sin, is to be angry, as Christ was, at nothing but sin."  
-Matthew Henry


Initially my reaction was one of ugly self-righteousness and trying to justify my own actions (even though I had already recognized that I was wrong - just being honest here, guys).  Could it be righteous anger then, to be angry when someone has sinned against you?

But immediately this verse ran through my mind:


"For the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God."  


And I realized what a hypocritical attitude I had, to direct anger at someone else's (supposed) sin against me, and completely forget the blackness in my own heart.

The only way to really be safe in righteous anger at sin is to be more angry at your own sin than anything else.  

The example of righteous anger that is always cited is when Jesus become angry because of the money tables in the temple.  And Jesus did have righteous anger at the cheating and lying that was going on, but there is a big difference between Jesus and me - Jesus has no sin of His own.  He had a pure right to be angry.  I, on the other hand, have a heart full of sin - and if I am going to claim to have righteous anger, it needs to be directed at my own sin first.

And today, of all days, it is easier to be angry at my own sin.  Because today, thousands of years ago, Jesus suffered unspeakable things to pay for it.  

Justice is a big talking point among Christians these days, and people mean so many different things by it.  But if we are going to talk about justice, let's apply it to everything.  What would be just here, really?  God could have chosen to be angry with us forever, to give us our punishment, and He would have been just in doing so.  But instead Jesus, our righteous Judge, took our punishment Himself.  That is the most unjust thing that ever happened, but He did it because He loves us, and He continually offers us every chance at His forgiveness.

When we accept and believe what Jesus did for us on the cross, there is no more anger there, though we continue to do things to deserve it - but Jesus took all that anger on Himself.  Now, for the one who trusts in Him, there is only love, and mercy, and grace. I am so grateful for what He has done for me, even though I constantly prove I am unworthy of having the King of the universe die for me (see example above).

And I love that it doesn't end with death.  Death and sin did not defeat Jesus - He defeated them once and for all when He rose from the dead on Easter morning!


"One day the grave could conceal Him no longer
One day the stone rolled away from the door
Then He arose, over death He had conquered
Now is ascended, my Lord evermore!"
-One Day, J. Wilbur Chapman


He is risen, and He is coming back someday to take His own home!

Are you one of His too?

I hope and pray each of you reading this can know the mercy, and grace, and victory that is only found in accepting who Jesus is, and what He has done for us!  

Happy Resurrection Day (on Sunday), my Friends!  

He is risen indeed!


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Natalie @ She Builds Her Home said...

Oh this is so good, Callie! So convicting and full of truth!

Cheyenne said...

Amen! And ohmygoodness, your family has grown up so much since I last was in the blogging world!

Heather Pedersen said...

So good. I know I do the EXACT same thing some nights. It's always humbling when God speaks to your heart, and shows you truth through scripture & quiet time. :)

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