Be angry, but sin not.

Understanding the very nature of Man; The Word says:

Psalm 4 is a psalm of trust written by David. The psalm is brief, only eight verses (nine, including the Hebrew ascription “for the choir director, on stringed instruments, a Psalm of David”). The psalm is written in three sections with a “selah” (a marker for a pause or musical interlude) at the end of verses 2 and 4. In the second short section, David sings, “Tremble and do not sin” (Psalm 4:4, NASB) or, as the ESV puts it, “Be angry and do not sin.” The Hebrew word translated in the ESV as “be angry” is ragaz, and it can mean “to be disturbed or agitated.” David recognizes there are legitimate causes to be agitated but cautions against going so far as to be sinful. In the New Testament, Paul quotes from Psalm 4:4 while giving instructions on Christian living in Ephesians 4:26.

David calls out for God to hear him as God has done before (Psalm 4:1). David seems to be concerned about men who are mistreating him in falsehood (Psalm 4:2). David affirms his confidence in God as having set apart the godly person and hearing him when he calls out to Him (Psalm 4:3). So, one can be bothered—or even angry—and yet, because the godly person knows that God hears and delivers, that anger should not extend to sinfulness (Psalm 4:4). In the same way, David calls to the hearer to meditate (on God’s faithfulness) quietly in the night and to be still (Psalm 4:5).

In the final and longest section of the psalm, after reminding the hearer to “be angry and do not sin,” David exhorts that we should “offer right sacrifices, and put [our] trust in the LORD” (Psalm 4:5, ESV). Because of that trust in the Lord, the godly person never needs to fret about wrongdoers. Even when others are not showing us good, God shines His light on us (Psalm 4:6). He is the one who puts gladness in our hearts even more than having plenty (Psalm 4:7). We rest peacefully in the night because of Him (Psalm 4:8).

This psalm is, among other things, a helpful reminder that we can “be angry and do not sin.” We may be upset, but we do not need to be overcome with anger, because we trust in Him. Paul later quotes Psalm 4:4 (translating the Hebrew ragaz with the Greek orgizo, indicating that the term angry is an accurate rendering), reminding believers that anger is acceptable if it does not extend to sin. Paul also puts an important time limit on anger, as he says, “Do not let the sun go down on your anger” (Ephesians 4:26, ESV). David’s song was seemingly to be sung at night, as it focused on God’s provision good rest because of our trust in the Lord, and Paul challenges his readers not to take anger to bed with them. While David’s words appeal to the heart, Paul’s are more an appeal to the intellect, but they are providing the same prescription: don’t end your day overcome with anger, but rather have confidence in the Lord.

Anger and faith are mutually exclusive ideas, as the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God (James 1:20). God is trustworthy, and anything that might bother us to the point of anger can be given to Him. We can trust Him to handle it.

Anger is a natural emotion. We feel as though we aren’t allowed to be angry, but emotions are what make us huMan. We all become furious at some point in time, it’s what we do with our anger that can be detrimental. Anger can lead us to raise our voices or speak hurtful words to our loved ones. We lash out at those who provide customer service or make harsh statements to our co-workers. We must take our anger to The Lord in prayer and ask for guidance in how we manage our emotions.

And we pray:

Dear Father, our emotions are a product of Your Creation. Help us to manage our emotions to reflect Your Love. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Published by Fellowship of Praise: ALL praise to God our Reason, Hallelujah!!!

To God be The glory. Let us praise God together for His ALL in our lives, Amen.

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