Why are so many people so angry? It seems that every time we turn around, someone is furiously yelling about one thing or another. Yet, what are we gaining by being constantly upset at everything? Nothing positive comes out of being negative. Did you see what I did there? Being cruel with our words or spiteful with our attitude in personal interactions never edifies anyone. The outcome of this kind of foolishness is actually the opposite. People are more divided than ever before. We are never to behave like this as the children of God and followers of Jesus the King. The apostle Paul writes, “I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” (Ephesians 4:1–3 emphasis added) Paul is begging the church to keep it together in love, so to speak. He calls them to unity, but not agreement without purpose, or one that is in the Spirit that brings about peace.
Oh, how we could use more of that today! He goes on to say, “There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” (Ephesians 4:4–6) So if the instruction of God’s word is explicit, why are so many “Christians” being cruel and divisive with other Christians? Is it fear, arrogance, possessions, politics, or pride? Maybe it is a combination of all the above. However, one thing is for sure; we best be checking ourselves before we go wrecking ourselves. James tells us, “So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.” (James 1:19-20) So, maybe, just maybe, we can all stop yelling at each other long enough to actually hear what someone else is saying. It is possible they are saying something wonderful and uplifting if given half a chance to be part of the conversation. They also may be right. So, what is going to happen if we cannot get a handle on the fire and fury of hate that is ragging through the house of God? We will be ruined.
Paul gives a strong warning and admonishment when he writes, “For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you bite and devour one another, beware lest you be consumed by one another!” (Galatians 5:14–15 emphasis added) When did it become more important to be right than being loving? Now I am not saying we become wishy-washy with the truth of God’s word. Heaven forbid we ever do that. We must stand up for what is right, just, and true as we live our lives loyal to God, believing His promises, and waiting in hope for His coming. Jesus prayed to the Father and declared, “Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.” (John 17:17) We should be so washed in the word of God that it becomes our default source for everything in this life. Especially our communication with others. So, the next time we are tempted to give someone a “Hey, you are wrong, and I am right” speech, email, post, or DM, take a moment and look in the mirror and remember what Jesus taught us.
“And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not perceive the plank in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me remove the speck that is in your eye,’ when you yourself do not see the plank that is in your own eye? Hypocrite! First, remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck that is in your brother’s eye.” (Luke 6:41–42) We may want to put an end to beating each other up and seek to save the lost instead. “And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, ‘All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’ Amen.” (Matthew 28:18-20) Just a thought.