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I. Examples of Wrath / Rage

By Evil People, Enraged that Others Did What was Good

Potential Example Paul Feared Might Exist (Christians displaying evil conduct)

Example not defined as either good or evil

II. What Scripture tells us about this type of conduct:

It is an act of the flesh [sinful nature], not a fruit of the Spirit

Get rid of such conduct

Question: Is rage/wrath EVER legitimate?

In Acts 12:20, Herod's rage is not specifically defined as being good or bad. Could there be a situation in which rage/wrath were NOT wrong? In the study on "anger," we discovered that certain types of anger could be legitimate. But here, there is no direct statement claiming that human rage/wrath is good.

In the Old Testament, the wrath of God is mentioned many times (perhaps 150 times), as a righteous and holy expression of God's character and God's justice (against sin). In most instances, the wrath of men is condemned either directly or by implication. However, there are at least five instances in which we seem to find exceptions to this rule. Three proverbs (Proverbs 16:14; 19:12; and 20:2) refer to a king's wrath, but do not state that the wrath is wrong. There is also a verse in which the prophet Jeremiah claims to be "full of the wrath of the Lord" (Jeremiah 6:11). Finally, King Saul was condemned because he did not obey the Lord, to "carry out his [the Lord's] fierce wrath against the Amalekites" (1 Samuel 28:18). As we look at these possible "exceptions," we note that all involve the actions of a leader - either king or prophet. Two of these involve an expression or display of the Lord's wrath.

Conclusions? Perhaps there may be times in which a high authority might have a right to display rage/wrath - especially when that wrath is an expression of God's wrath against sin (perhaps ONLY then). But for the rest of us, it does not seem that rage/wrath is ever an option.

[III. All the following are prophetic in significance & are not included above:]

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Do you ever become enraged? Why? [If your answer is "yes," the following instructions are for you:]

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Dennis Hinks © 1996