Deut12.28 Be careful to obey all these words that I command you, that it may go well with you and with your children after you forever, when you do what is good and right in the sight of the Lord your God.
Children’s welfare depends upon a father’s obedience to God’s requirements. There is a common theme throughout the Bible; when the rulers of the people are faithful the country prospers, and when fathers are faithful, families prosper. Prosper does not always mean material wealth, but it does mean peace. This peace is reflected in the overall quiet enjoyment and provisioning for life of safety, food, housing, care, and love.
After turning to God, what is the next step a father must take in order to bring peace between himself and his children? Anger is the opposite of peace and it leads to poor decisions that result in brokenness: Psalm37.8 Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath! Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil.
It is important to acknowledge the validity of righteous anger (Ps. 4:4; Ps 139:19–24; Matt. 21:12–19; Matt 23:17; Mark 3:1–5; Eph. 4:26–27). Anger is a valid human emotion, especially when it is felt because of some offense against God. Offenses against oneself and others can be valid causes for anger. In all cases, the anger must be short-lived, or it will turn into harmful and sinful bitterness (Ps. 4:4; Eph. 4:26–27). So we must present our hearts continually to God, so he can examine us and show us what is accurate and what is inaccurate in our perspectives (Ps. 139:23–24).
What are a father’s limits in demonstrating his displeasure or anger? For there are times when correction is important, but love is just as important: Col3.21 Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged.
This verse tells us how to handle righteous anger and its limits: Eph4.25 Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27 and give no opportunity to the devil. This is the one sweet answer that has served me well as I've grown older. We are all human and we are all subject to anger, but we can and must find a dear and sweet way to find peace for ourselves and our children.
Going to bed in anger gives an opportunity to the devil; do not let this happen. In fact this is a helpful picture that will encourage you not to go to bed in angry pride. If you will picture the devil entering your house and roaming around, you will have no trouble making peace before going to bed.
Here is God speaking in human terms: Isa54.8 In overflowing anger for a moment I hid my face from you, but with everlasting love I will have compassion on you,” says the Lord, your Redeemer. In God’s righteous anger, how long was He angry: “for a moment”. How did God return the peace: “with everlasting love”.
Published on Monday, December 2, 2013 @ 4:36 AM CDT