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What to do about anger

Don Ruhl • Savage Street, Grants Pass, Oregon • February 9, In the year of our Lord, 2014


  1. Why Do We Get Angry? 
    1. Jesus revealed the place where anger begins,21 “For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, 22 thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness. 23 All these evil things come from within and defile a man” (Mark 7.21–23).
    2. Therefore, we have to control
      1. what enters our hearts, and
      2. what we create there,8 Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy–meditate on these things (Phi 4.8).
        1. Since we tend to see only the bad in others,
          1. leading to anger,
        2. the Bible tells us to think on things of praise.
  2. Constant Prayer

    14 Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15 And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him (1Jo 5.14–15).

    1. Is it God’s will that we put away anger?
    2. Yes, therefore, we know that He hears prayers.
  3. Redirect Emotion 
    1. God rarely tells us to stop evil,
      1. without also telling us the good to do.
      2. Therefore, put away anger,
        1. replacing it with the right things, or
        2. the anger will return,31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. 32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ forgave you (Eph 4.31–32).
    2. We have energy that God knows we must redirect.
      1. Think of God redirected Paul,
      2. not holding back his energy,11 “And I punished them often in every synagogue and compelled them to blaspheme; and being exceedingly enraged against them, I persecuted them even to foreign cities” (Acts 26.11).
  4. Focus on Jesus

    1 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God (Heb 12.1–2).

    1. What will happen when you fill your mind with Christ?
    2. For every situation think of Him and His crucifixion.
  5. Recognize that Others Are Like You

    1 Remind them to be subject to rulers and authorities, to obey, to be ready for every good work, 2 to speak evil of no one, to be peaceable, gentle, showing all humility to all men. 3 For we ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another. 4 But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, 5 not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit (Tts 3.1–5).

    1. We tend to recognize our sins, but
    2. conclude they are not as bad as others.
      1. Or we think ours are justified.
      2. Or that we have ours under control.
      3. Or that ours do not hurt others.
  6. Read the Bible Daily

    9 How can a young man cleanse his way?
    By taking heed according to Your word.
    10 With my whole heart I have sought You;
    Oh, let me not wander from Your commandments!
    11 Your word I have hidden in my heart,
    That I might not sin against You!
    (Psa 119.9–11)

    1. The Great Counselor guides you through Scripture.
    2. He puts you or allows you in situations where you can apply what you read.
  7. You Are Not a Policeman

    17 Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. 18 If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. 19 Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” {Deu 32.35} says the Lord. 20 Therefore “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.” {Pro 25.21–22} 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. 1 Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil (Rom 12.17–13.3).
  8. Remember the Golden Rule

    12 “Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets” (Matt 7.12).

    1. This Rule takes our focus off self and onto others,
    2. thereby avoiding anger when our needs are not met.
  9. Worship Regularly

    24 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, 25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching (Heb 10.24–25).

    1. Does being with other followers of Jesus help us?
    2. Does worshiping our Creator have any benefit on us?
  10. Imitate the Beatitudes

    3 “Blessed are the poor in spirit…
    4 Blessed are those who mourn…
    5 Blessed are the meek…
    6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness…
    7 Blessed are the merciful…
    8 Blessed are the pure in heart…
    9 Blessed are the peacemakers…
    10 Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake…”
    (Matt 5.3–12).

    1. Why Steve is a likable person.
    2. I have observed in others who have their anger under control,
      1. they implement the Beatitudes,
      2. whether knowingly or unknowingly.


  1. In Christ, the ugly becomes beautiful, and 
    1. you become the person God wants you to be, and
    2. you become the person you want to be.
  2. Crucify anger in your heart.