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Is it Wrong for a Christian to Get Angry?

photo by Gerd Altman at pixabay

Is it wrong for a Christian to get angry?

Is it a sin to be angry or Is anger a sin? Can a Christian get angry? Should a Christian ever get angry? Often unspoken, questions like these about anger go through a Christian's mind especially in the heat or after the heat of the moment. Let's quickly answer the question posed in the title. Is it wrong for a Christian to get angry? NO. I could already be in hot water after saying that. But before you leave this page, can you read this verse taken from the Bible? It says in Eph 4:26:

"Be angry, and do not sin..."
Indeed, there are a lot of verses that say that anger is sin but don't think that the Bible is contradicting itself here. Scriptures talk about right anger and wrong anger. Clearly, in the verse above, the Bible is talking about the right kind of anger. We can get angry and not sin. So, what is "right anger" and what is "wrong anger" then? When can a Christian get angry? How should a Christian deal with anger issues? Read on for some principles about anger in the life of a Christian.

By definition, anger is not a "wrong or sinful" emotion.

The Oxford Dictionary defines anger as a strong feeling of annoyance, displeasure, or hostility, and there is basically nothing wrong with that. You can be annoyed, displeased, or be hostile towards something or someone in the right way and for the right reason. Likewise, you can be those things for the wrong reason and in all the wrong ways.

Reason and Action determines whether your anger is right or wrong.

So, analyze all the reasons why you're angry and you'll know if it was right or wrong for you to get angry. Then, analyze all the ways you've acted on this anger and you'll know if it was right or wrong for you to express anger in that way.

You should never prolong anger nor escalate it.

Ephesians 4:26 also says that you shouldn't go to bed angry. You shouldn't let your day pass with unresolved anger. Get angry and get over it. Don't hold it against a person. It happened, you got angry, deal with it, and that should be it. At all times, prolonged anger is wrong. And anger that escalates is always wrong.

Your anger should not cause you to be a total "a**".

By reading that word, did you find what I said offensive? That's the point being made here. You can be angry but not become hurtful and distasteful in the way you express and handle it. Only babies are yet to master handling their emotions and handling your anger "like a baby' is always wrong.
photo by Mohamed Hassan

When Is It Wrong to Get Angry?

Here, let's point out what's practical. It's obvious but not many people really think much about these:

It's wrong to get angry about unintentional mistakes or offenses.

Home and intimate relationships are the most common and worst places to see and experience wrong anger. A child spills water or food on the table or the floor and you go bonkers. That is wrong anger. 

Somebody said something that's not right or somebody misunderstood you. Can you get angry? Well, yes. But, how you respond is crucial to keeping your anger on the right track.

It's wrong to get angry about one's limitations or incapabilities.

People won't always meet your expectations but should you get worked up and lash out in anger? Your spouse can't think or do things the way you do and you go bonkers. That is wrong anger. A worker or a family member didn't follow according to your instructions or preferences and you get so angry. That is wrong anger.

Now, when somebody from work or business advertises or promises to deliver in a certain way and they fail, that's right anger. You were deceived there. It's not just a simple failing of expectations. Where there is a just cause for disappointment and complaint, that is right anger. Still, as a Child of God who bears Christ's name, you should know how to express anger right.

How Can You Get Angry Yet Not Sin?

What is right anger? When can a Christian get angry yet not sin? Let's lay out some of the situations here.

Anger when an offense is committed is right anger.
We're talking about valid offense here. Today, people get offended for the flimsiest reasons. "You said something I didn't like." "You looked at me in a certain way." "You dress and talk in a certain way I don't approve of." A lot of The world and Social Media revolve around people who get offended over the slightest of things. So many angry people lash out wrongly.

Anger over wrong actions and words is right anger.
It is only right and natural to get angry when somebody is doing wrong, when a promise is broken, when a crime is committed, when a boundary is crossed, when trust is broken, etc. Where there is dishonesty and deceit, tolerance is not the response, but rather, a strong rebuke.

Anger in defense of God is right anger.
The world offends God everyday. So many atheists, so many people are just against God and everything He stands for. So many are against Christians. And when this is happening right in your face, that is not the time to be polite. That is the time to speak out and point out the wrong. That is a valid time to express and defend God and the Truth.

Hey, do you have anything to add to this discussion? I'd love to hear it in the comments below.


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