My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you (James 1:19-21)
Some great points in this passage…….
1. Anger is not bad, if it is righteous anger. Righteous anger is godly anger. Man’s anger (my rage, temper), is NOT righteous anger. I would do well to evaluate my anger, and suspect that if my heart rate is elevate or my voice is higher or louder, whether that is righteous anger or sinful anger (Most often, if not always, the latter). For that matter, if anger is a REACTION, not a RESPONSE (Slow to become angry…), I’m betting it’s not righteous….
2. I wonder how much less angry I might be, if I were to get rid of all the crap in my life – greed, PRIDE, lust, laziness, etc…..
3. I’m pretty sure I alone cannot get rid of those things in my life. I’ve tried. Only through Christ is that possible. I’m thinking that is what James means when he says “humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you”.
4. I love that the very next verse, James 1:22 says “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” So you fell down – get up. Do what it says. Even if you haven’t done what it says 100 times over – do what it says now. Just this once. Steps taken away from God over and over are not reason enough to never take that step toward him.