CAROLYN'S COMPOSITIONS

April 9, 2011

Lenten Study: 7 Deadly Sins—Anger #5: Only Jesus’ Way


CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

LENTEN STUDY: 7 DEADLY SINS

ANGER #5

 ONLY JESUS’ WAY

MONTE W. HOLLAND

INTRODUCTION

     The following study is a journey through Lent, the forty-day pre-Easter season (which excludes Sundays).  Easter’s date, determined by the time of the first full moon after the Spring equinox, is very late this year.

     Traditionally, many Christians use Lent for self-examination and a renewal of their commitment to their faith.

     This year I  chose to do a devotional study on aspects of the Seven Deadly Sins, sins identified by very early Christians as key behaviors separating man from God and God’s will. The seven sins are not listed together in the Bible—each is, however, spoken about in various Scripture sites.

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THE SEVEN DEADLY SINS:

GREED, ENVY, ANGER, LUST, GLUTTONY, SLOTH and PRIDE.

THE ASPECTS OF THE SEVEN DEADLY SINS ARE:

#1 Breaking the Mosaic Law

#2 Defying God or rebelling against God

#3 Acts of violence to others

#4 Failing to make proper sacrifices or worship

#5 Not living up to or reflecting God’s glory (not living as one created in God’s image)

Anger #5

ONLY JESUS’ WAY

SCRIPTURE:  7 Then asked he them again, Whom seek ye? And they said, Jesus of Nazareth. 8 Jesus answered, I have told you that I am he: if therefore ye seek me, let these go their way: 9 that the saying might be fulfilled, which he spake, Of them which thou gavest me have I lost none. 10 Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Malchus. 11 Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it? (John 18:7-11 (KJV))

 43 You have heard people say, “Love your neighbors and hate your enemies.” 44 But I tell you to love your enemies and pray for anyone who mistreats you. 45 Then you will be acting like your Father in heaven. He makes the sun rise on both good and bad people. And he sends rain for the ones who do right and for the ones who do wrong. 46 If you love only those people who love you, will God reward you for this? Even tax collectors love their friends. 47 If you greet only your friends, what’s so great about this? Don’t even unbelievers do that? 48 But you must always act like your Father in heaven. (Matthew 5:43-48 (CEV))

16 All of you surely know you are God’s temple and his Spirit lives in you. 17 Together you are God’s holy temple, and God will destroy anyone who destroys his temple. (I Corinthians 3:16-17 CEV))

DEVOTION:  Sometimes I think caller ID isn’t a good thing. When I see names and numbers that I recognize, my attitude toward the call is pre-conditioned. I associate some numbers and names with bad news, maybe a death in the family. I associate other numbers with a friendly voice and some upbeat message. Then there are the numbers from which I expect complaints and demands for action—causing the hair on the back of my neck to stand up, and making me defensive and unpleasant when I answer the telephone.

     That isn’t God’s way. These persons aren’t my enemies, but I treat them as    

the “world” usually treats enemies. Even if they were my enemies, Jesus instructs me to love them.

     Can I be God’s person, refraining from anger and acting out of kindness? Often the person on that call is making a less than reasonable demand. Good listening and some kind words and working toward a mutually agreeable alternative leaves both of us feeling better. And assuredly I feel that I have respected the Holy Spirit living in my midst and equally important, the temple of the Holy Spirit that the other person is.

PRAYER:  Forgiving God, how often I need your forgiveness for my anger. Sometimes it is that sudden disgraceful word, sometimes it is simmering dislike of another person, and sometimes it “cutting off an ear.” Whatever it is, remind me that until I change I disgrace your “temple of the Holy Spirit.” Amen.

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To read the previous devotion, click on: Lenten Study: 7 Deadly Sins—Envy #4: More Themes From a Scattered Garden

To read the following devotion, click on: Lenten Study: 7 Deadly Sins—Lust #5: Love Turns to Hate

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ADDITIONAL READING:

Suspicion

Must we Yield to the Force of Inappropriate Touch?

Baby Removed from Home after Mother Eats Poppy Seeds

David, Our German Exchange Student: Part 1

Wait Until the Coffee’s Poured

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