The High Cost Of Rage
March 5, 2003 • By Ed Wrather
A wise man fears and departs from evil, but a fool rages and is self-confident. - Proverbs 14:16.
Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. - Galatians 5:19-21.
And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. - Ephesians 4:30-31.
Justin Lundin tailgated the car on a two-lane road near Weatherford, Texas, but apparently the driver that was tailgated showed some visible sign of his irritation. 20-year-old Lundin, then, stopped his car in the middle of the road; blocking the driver he had tailgated. In a rage, Lundin attacked the driver behind him, but then he was struck and killed accidentally, by another car attempting to go around the two cars. Another example of the high cost of rage occurred a decade ago in Palm Springs, California. A retired doctor, went into an uncontrollable rage, at the party guests parking in front of his home to attend a neighbor’s party. The eventual result, was that police officers were forced to shoot and kill, the doctor who was attacking the guests.
As the King Solomon points out in Proverbs, the fool rages, and is confident that he can do whatever he wants without any consequences. Or at least, he does not care if there are any consequences. In the two examples above, we see that there was no worry about any consequences. The rage had taken over. However, a wise person "fears and departs evil." What that means, is that the wise person does think about the consequences. The wise person, does look beyond the immediate, to the long-term results. The wise person, considers the possibilities of what could happen, and avoids the evil.
"Outbursts of wrath" have long been a problem for mankind. How many murders, how many tragedies, how many broken homes, could have been prevented; if only there had not been an "outburst of wrath" or a fit of rage?
If you have a problem with rage, I urge you to think about the consequences of your giving in to this evil. Before you do some terrible thing - stop and ask God, if that is what He wants you to do? Before you do some terrible thing - stop and ask yourself, whether you are being wise or foolish if you do it? Before you do some terrible thing - stop and ask yourself, if a few moments of self-gratification is really worth ruining the rest of your life? And before you get to the point of having to consider whether to give in to rage, I would urge you to find help. Talk to God. Talk to your pastor. Talk to a godly friend. Send me an email and I will send you some material that will be of help.
Before you have a fit - be sure to count the very high cost of rage.