Listen! “When Anger Wins”

 

It was a great time as we closed out our last session of the Marriage Between Friends workshop this past Monday! I would never have guessed just how much conducting these workshops would have  been such a blessing to my own marriage as we encourage others. As always at the end of every cohort  there are a few thoughts that come to my mind that I hope will encourage us all!

Watch Your Mouth!!!

In our family of churches we are known for our level of commitment to God and to our standard of personal righteousness, especially when it comes to cursing…you know, the traditional four letter expletives that pepper most conversations today. What we can sometimes miss is that the biblical calling that  far higher than just not cursing. Christ called disciples to treat our speech with a sacredness that is best summarized by the Apostle Paul when he says, “Let no unwholesome talk come out of your mouths but only what is helpful…” Ephesians 4:29. The word translated “unwholesome” literally means putrid as in rotting flesh or vegetables that are clearly unfit for human consumption. Of course this would include not saying the usual “sc’use

my french” type words but must be replaced by, “-only what is good for building someone in need”.

What is putrid language? Jesus defined putrid language as the name calling we do to others that express contempt and settled anger. In other words, saying anything that come from this heart, whatever that may be. This is on of the reasons why in Ephesians 4:26 Paul stated, “-in your anger do not sin…” Paul was not saying that anger, as an emotional response, was sin but as it is expressed when it takes up permanent residence in our hearts. You see Paul spelling this out clearly when he challenges the Christians in Ephesians 4:31 to “get rid of” what I have nicknamed the BRASS (I love acronyms, it’s my DOE and psychology training).

“Unwholesome Talk” Avoid the B. R. A.S. S. (based on the Holman Christian Standard)

A Brief word Study

Ephesians 4:31 “Get Rid Of…”

  1. Bitterness Original Word: πικρία, ας, ἡ
    Part of Speech: Noun, Feminine
    Transliteration: pikria
    Phonetic Spelling: (pik-ree’-ah)
    Short Definition: bitterness
    Definition: bitterness, harshness, hence met: an embittered (resentful) spirit.

 

  1. Rage

2372 thymós (from thyō, “rush along, getting heated up, breathing violently,” cf. J. Thayer) – properly, passion-driven behavior, i.e. actions emerging out of strong impulses (intense emotion).

When 2372 /thymós (“expressed passion”) is used of people it indicates rage (personal venting of anger, worth). This flaw is completely absent of the Lord expressing (inspiring) intense anger. Accordingly, 2372 (thymós) is used of God’s perfect, holy wrath inRevelation (Rev 14:10,19,15:1, etc.). This anger is directed against sin.

 

  1. Anger

3709 orgḗ (from orgáō, “to teem, swelling up to constitutionally oppose”) – properly, settled anger (opposition), i.e. rising up from an ongoing (fixed) opposition.

3709 /orgḗ (“settled anger”) proceeds from an internal disposition which steadfastly opposes someone or something based on extended personal exposure, i.e. solidifying what the beholder considers wrong (unjust, evil).

[“Orgē comes from the verb oragō meaning, ‘to teem, to swell‘; and thus implies that it is not a sudden outburst, but rather (referring to God’s) fixed, controlled, passionate feeling against sin . . . a settledindignation (so Hendriksen)” (D. E. Hiebert, at 1 Thes 1:10).]

 

 

  1. “Brawling”- Shouting Cognate: kraugḗ(from 2896 /krázō, “cry out”) – loud crying, done with pathos (great emotion); clamorous screaming (shrieking) that is extremely boisterous, like a wounded person emitting “unearthly” (non-human) types of sounds.

 

  1. Slander

Cognate: blasphēmía (from blax, “sluggish/slow,” and 5345/phḗmē, “reputation, fame”) – blasphemy – literally, slow (sluggish) to call something good (that really is good) – and slow to identify what is truly bad (that really is evil).

Blasphemy (988 /blasphēmía) “switches” right for wrong (wrong for right), i.e. calls what God disapproves, “right” which “exchanges the truth of God for a lie” (Ro 1:25). See 987 (blasphēmeō).

These are the expressions of anger that will destroy ANY relationship and especially what is supposed to be the closest and most sacred relationship on earth! If we as disciples can resolve to reign in our tongues we are in the best position to glorify God in our marriage and having a marriage that will be rich, meaningful and lasting.

 

 

 

About the author

Antoine Lee MEd, MC is a recent graduate of Nyack Christian College with a Masters in Mental Health Counseling. Currently he has been an independent Contractor for organizations such as Community Access as well as for the HIV/AIDS Center, Project HEAL and Women’s Support Services at Montefiore Hospital. He provided mental health in-service presentations and workshops in mindfulness training and assisted in and supported facilitation of peer support groups. He has recently completed an internship at University Behavioral Associates (Montefiore) where he helped to support transitional families. Antoine has been a pre-marital and marital counseling volunteer for over 20 years; Youth and Family leader for over ten years; motivated teaching professional with over 13 years experience addressing student needs and ensuring proper student development and an experienced 8th grade teacher with an excellent parent-teacher communication record and student motivation techniques. Antoine brings to the counseling setting his deep biblical knowledge and practical application that he has learned over the years as he has grown and matured while raising his family and helping people for over 25 years at his church. He is a creative professional with extensive project experience from concept to development.

2 comments on “Listen! “When Anger Wins””

  1. Jennifer Bennett-Fredricks Reply

    That was especially helpful and poignant for me as my marriage has and is on the brink of divorce as a result of anger and not watching our mouth.
    When Christ is not made Lord anymore and we are instead it’s a tragic train wreck.
    I personally find myself in a place where I don’t know how to move forward, to me it seems like Mount Everest and I’m not even a novice climber. Wish we had a professional guide.
    Thanks for sharing these great insights.

    • alee162@msn.com Reply

      Thanks so much for your encouraging words and, if you live near the Bronx, please feel free to reach me through this blog or on my listing on Psychology Today. We all need help to get unstuck!
      Best,
      Antoine Lee

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