Angry Words

by Jeffrey W. Hamilton

Text: Ephesians 4:25-5:2


I.         The Bible speaks of two types of anger

            A.        The quick, fly-off-the handle, hot tempered anger

            B.        The slow, methodical, vengeful anger

            C.        Both are dangerous for different reasons

            D.        Colossians 3:8

                        1.         Orge (anger) is the slow building type of anger

                        2.         Thumos (wrath) is the passionate hot-tempered type of anger

                        3.         Both at to be put away

II.        Dealing the quick-tempered person

            A.        Too often these people don’t think when they get angry

                        1.         Proverbs 14:17 - They do things they later regret

            B.        They get overwhelmed by their emotions - Proverbs 27:4

            C.        Therefore, it is nearly impossible to reason with an angry person until they begin to calm down

                        1.         Talk softly to force them to listen - Proverbs 15:1

                        2.         Don’t use words to goad them into further anger

                        3.         Responding to anger with anger only leads to escalation - Proverbs 29:22

            D.        It is hard to be calm with faced with a storm of emotion

                        1.         Often the angry person is looking for a fight, so he says things that ought not be said - Proverbs 15:18

                        2.         It takes love for the person to withstand the abuse until they calm down - Proverbs 10:12

            E.        Don’t shield a person from the consequences of his anger - Proverbs 19:19

                        1.         Humility is the solution to being hot-tempered

                        2.         Being rescued from mistakes causes a person to become arrogant. They see no need to change because they had no consequences

III.       Dealing with a hot temper within yourself

            A.        The most common reason for getting angry is attempting to control something that you have no control over

                        1.         It is a futile attempt at forcing your will onto someone else

                        2.         Remember that in anger you don’t think well, so often alternatives that can be controlled are not considered

            B.        Hold back the emotion - Proverbs 16:32

                        1.         Don’t rush headlong into anger - Ecclesiastes 7:9

            C.        Force yourself to listen - James 1:19-20

                        1.         Gather your facts. Understand what is really going on.

                        2.         Far too often the angry person isn’t mad about reality, but what he thought was said or what he thought had happened. When the reality is explained, the storm disipates.

            D.        Don’t interject your opinions too soon

                        1.         Saying what you think will be perceived as a challenge to the person’s character or integrity

                        2.         Instead, gently feedback responses that lets the other person know you heard what they said, even if you don’t agree with their conclusions.

                        3.         This isn’t about winning a battle, it is about settling a disagreement

            E.        Ignore personal attacks - Proverbs 19:11

                        1.         This is what is meant by turning the other cheek - Matthew 5:39

            F.        Quick tempered is a learned response - Proverbs 22:24-25

IV.      Dealing with the slow tempered person

            A.        Deal with an issue immediately - Matthew 5:23-26

                        1.         An issue put off will only build the steam in the volcano

            B.        Don’t be stubborn - Proverbs 16:14

                        1.         You don’t always have to get your way, even if you are right

            C.        Treat the person with kindness they don’t deserve - Romans 12:20-21

            D.        Don’t provoke another person - Galatians 5:26

                        1.         Example: Don’t do it with your children - Colossians 3:21; Ephesians 6:4

                        2.         Too often people with goad another, saying things they know another doesn’t like, then acting shocked with the dam they been chiseling at finally bursts - Titus 3:9

                        3.         Pick your battles. Focus only what is really important.

                        4.         Especially dangerous when that person can take action - Proverbs 20:2

V.        Dealing with building wrath in yourself

            A.        Don’t fret over what was done. Learn to let things go - Psalms 37:8

            B.        Settle problems instead of putting them off - Ephesians 4:26

                        1.         Otherwise there is a build-up

            C.        Say and do nice things for the person you are mad at - Romans 12:19-21

                        1.         It forces you to take a balance view of other people. People are not totally evil.

            D.        Forgiveness is not an option - Matthew 6:14-15

                        1.         Forgiveness involves releasing the past. God is our example - Jeremiah 31:34

                        2.         It doesn’t matter how often or how soon a person injures you - Luke 17:3-4

            E.        Don’t respond to truth with anger - Galatians 4:16

VI.      Put it away - Ephesians 4:31-5:2

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