In my last post we looked at Part 4 of the Temptation Tracker. This particular post will be part 5. You can listen to the sermon link below. In it I explain how to use the Temptation Tracker and how the Lord wants to be with us in whatever emotion we are feeling.
Where did this come from?
I always like to give credit where it is due:
Temptation Tracker (created by Doug Hutchins with goingtransparent.com)
To see more on this on my site, click on this link: TempationTrackerPage
One of the things the temptation tracker helps us identify is what emotionally triggers us to bow down to other idols. Every time a person is tempted to bow down to a false idol, they need to account for what they were feeling emotionally during that temptation. It looks like this-
Feeling: how were you feeling when temptation hit (Remember: BLAST)
Today let’s look at A, the issue of being angry.
In Ephesians 4, it tells us to be angry but don’t sin. This means it is possible to be angry without sinning. However, the problem is when I allow my anger to lead to sin. How does that happen? Ephesians 4 tells me this happens when I allow the sun to go down on my anger.
If we are honest with ourselves, I think we would admit that many of us have had the sun go down on our anger. When this happens, we are in trouble. Ephesians 4 tells us that this gives the devil a foothold. If the devil gets a foothold, what could that lead to?
Well, Ephesians 4 tells us it could lead to this:
- Unwholesome talk coming out of our mouth
- Causing the Holy Spirit to be grieved
- Anger becomes worse and leads to bitterness, rage, slander and malice
Again, if we are honest I think we would all admit that the above has happened in our own life. If we are bowing down to something other than Jesus, and anger is at the root, then we must release that anger! How do we do this?
Ephesians 4:32 tells us to forgive just as God in Christ has forgiven us.
How has Christ forgiven us?
- Psalm 103:12-He removes our sin as far as the east is from the west
- Isaiah 38:17-God places our sin behind His back
- Isaiah 43:25-God erases our sin and chooses not to recall it to his memory
- Micah 7:18-19-God puts our sin under His foot and buries it in the depth of the sea
- Romans 8:1-The one who knows Christ is not condemned
- Romans 8:38-39-No one can separate us from God’s love if we are in Christ
- Ephesians 1:3-8-God chose us, adopted us, forgave us, redeemed us and lavished us in grace
- Colossians 1:13-14-God rescued us, redeemed us and forgave us
- Hebrews 10:14-God sees me as perfect because He sees Jesus in me
I could go on and on. This is how God has forgiven us because of what Christ did through His death, burial and resurrection. That is some pretty intense forgiveness.
Questions to consider: Do I believe God has forgiven me like this? Am I experiencing this type of forgiveness currently in my life? If I believe this, and I am experiencing this, then can I give that forgiveness away to the one who has wronged me?
When I bow down to idolatry to escape my anger, then I am just allowing the devil to get a stronger hold on my life. When I recognize how forgiven I am, then I can be be empowered by Him to forgive others. When I do this, I am compelled to bow down to only Jesus, not idolatry!
As you examine your heart, would you be willing to release your anger by forgiving the one who has wronged you? Remember: Don’t will yourself to do it. Long before you try to forgive, spend tons of time reflecting on and meditating on the forgiveness God has given you.
I gave you some great verses on forgiveness. Let me give you some great songs as well:
Forgiven by Sanctus Real
You Love Me Anyway by Sidewalk Prophets
Redeemed by Big Daddy Weave
Jesus is worthy of our worship because He created us. He is worthy of our worship because He died and rose again. He alone is worthy of our worship. We must bow down to nothing else.
If anger is leading me to idolatry, then may Christ’s forgiveness lead me to forgive others, and may this act of forgiveness be an act of worship to the King of Kings! He alone is worthy!