Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins

Meditation for the week of April 22, 2007

Ephesians 4:26-27
Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: Neither give place to the devil.

When our anger is uncontrolled, we do the work of Satan and not of God. James says to be slow to get angry since, “the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God (James 1:20).”

This last week a lone gunmen killed thirty-two people on the Virginia Tech College Campus, and then he killed himself. Apparently, he had a lot of anger and resentment toward others. If it takes a village to raise a child, that this fellow destroyed the work of a lot people in about two hours. In addition, he apparently did not have a village that provided him support. Those thirty-two people had been clothed, fed, loved and educated. Much money and time had been invested in them. He destroyed all of that in about two hours. He may have destroyed the person who would have found a cure for cancer. It is so easy to destroy and so hard to build. It is so easy to do evil and so hard to do good. It often takes a lot of time and effort to build something that someone evil can destroy in a few minutes.

Most of us get angry. We try to deal with whatever or whoever caused us to get angry and then we move on. We don’t continually allow ourselves to be put in the position that caused us the anger if at all possible. Sometimes that requires us to avoid people who are destructive. But normally, we do not dwell on our anger and “let the sun” go down on it so that we begin bearing a grudge and wanting revenge. Letting the sun go down on our wrath is way of saying that we should not dwell on the problem and let it become an obsession with us. When we do dwell on it, we become like Satan, and we often do the work of Satan. We give a place to the devil so that he can destroy. Matthew 8:44 says that he is the father of lies and a murderer. Murder is probably the most evil of the moral sins that we can commit because there is no way to undo what has been done. If an unsaved person is destroyed, they are not only destroyed for time but for eternity. But Satan enjoys destroying life with malice and premeditation.

Back in he old testament there was a man by the name of Ahithophel who waited for the chance to get even with David for violating his granddaughter Bathsheba. (See 2nd Samuel 11:3 and 2nd Samuel 23:34). Ahithophel had been King David’s counselor; but when he got the chance to advise Absalom, who had rebelled against his father, he took the opportunity. (See 2nd Samuel 15:12). There is little doubt that he thought David deserved to lose the kingdom. As a result, he helped Absalom in his rebellion. All that happened, however, was that the Lord defeated the counsel of Ahithophel; and, ultimately, Ahithophel took his own life (See 2nd Samuel 17:23).

Satan takes life while the Lord gives life. God breathed into man’s nostrils the breath of life (Genesis 2:7). He provides eternal life to those who trust Him (John 3:16). We know that Satan is real and that his work is destructive as the gunman on the Virgina Tech campus so clearly proved. I am glad that I also believe that the Lord is real and that His work saves rather than destroys. When we get so angry that we bear grudges, we end up doing Satan’s work. Ultimately our anger destroys us.

Bruce Collins

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