By Minister Melanie Dees Campbell
This week started with a co-laborer texting scriptures, Colossians 3:14-17, “... put on love ... the bond of perfection ... let the peace of God rule in your hearts ... be thankful ... the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord ... whatever you do in word or deed do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” (ESV) A scriptural life living directive for believers.
However, their footnote surprised me. “... A righteous indignation is a Godly Anger when we as Christians feel we have been treated unjustly and unfairly. Hurt, Pain, Upset, displeasure, dissatisfied, discontent.” (CB)
They could not say what CB represented, having Googled a word for indignation. Not realizing their emotional reaction at taking offense was not aligning with the scripture above it. By receiving appropriate scripture, they understood how to apply love through prayer.
It is not easy to cope with life’s hurts, unfair treatment, and upsets, but nowhere does the Lord teach us to go by how we feel in justifying hatred, anger or vengeance and excuse it as righteous indignation, nor is it wise to skip the directive of putting on love.
It is not easy being a God-fearer, a disciple of Messiah, because it is not in the wearing of a label of identification but the wearing of the love in action that proves who we serve and who we are in him.
When we put on love, it is to have the peace of Messiah, the peace that passes all understanding, which he was and is. We need to conform to (abide) in spiritual directives. Our desire should be to remain stable or fixed in a state of love to him so that this love can save us, heal us, deliver us from the pain and the angst of life situations. We can recover from hurt. How do we accomplish it?
First, our emotions should not be dismissed. We need to express and vent healthily. We should not confuse these feelings with the righteous anger of the Lord. Righteous anger is the only form of anger, not considered sinful. Examining circumstances and justification for righteous indignation we believers can agree that the best person to emulate would be the Messiah. When the Lord threw the money changers out of the temple, he exhibited righteous anger, not an emotional outburst or ‘feeling.’ Not insulted for himself but the house of the Father. He planned to throw them out; we know this because he braided the cords of a whip first. When the Lord rebuked the Pharisees, it was because they were twisting the teachings of the Father. If our Lord, our God is attacked, that is when we can have righteous anger.
When we are emotionally angered, wounded, insulted, our Savior taught us how to respond. Matthew 5:43-48 tells us to love our enemies, pray for those that persecute us, so that we may be children of our Father. Why? Because in the process of praying for them, we receive freedom. We benefit. The best prayer to start with is the “Our Father.” The real blessing is the result of freedom from carrying the burden of angst, so we can continue our life journey, becoming more like Jesus/Yeshua.
Blessings and Shalom