October 6, 2022
Bishop, W. F. Houston, Jr.
1 Cor. 13:5
*It is not rude; it is not self-seeking, it is not provoked [nor overly sensitive and easily angered]; it does not take into account a wrong endured.
“Beloved, love isn’t incited; and Self-Centered Anger Cannot Coexist With Love.” – Bishop, W. F. Houston, Jr.
Jonathan Edwards, one of the most influential preachers and theologians of the 18th century, had a daughter known for her explosive temper. A young man requested the hand of his daughter in marriage. Dr. Edwards responded, "No." The young man was heartbroken. The young man pleaded, "But I love her, and she loves me." Edwards replied, "It doesn't matter; she isn't worthy of you." "She's a Christian, isn't she?" he asked. "Yes," he answered, "but God's grace allows some individuals to live together, with others they couldn't coexist."
That may appear harsh, but Jonathan Edwards knew what his future son-in-law didn't: the presence of selfish anger indicates the lack of genuine love. According to Paul, love cannot get mad. It isn't characterized by sudden outbursts of emotion or physical activity. It doesn't get angry if someone hurts it.
The apostle Paul wasn't talking about anger at sin and its unpleasant consequences. That kind of anger is called "righteous indignation," and it's something that's demanded of Christians.
When Jesus drove the merchants and moneychangers out of the temple (John 2:14-15), He had a right to be furious because the place where his father lived was being violated. However, He didn't respond in the same manner whenever He was personally insulted or vilified. Similarly, it's appropriate for you to feel anger when others are persecuted, when God is offended, or when His Word is twisted and misunderstood. But love, on the other hand, is unshakeable even in the face of slander.
Our culture teaches us to battle for our rights and to react when we don't get what we believe we deserve. Such graciousness is foreign to our society because of this teaching. Because of this, many individuals have become self-centered, materialistic, and loveless, seeking nothing more than personal prosperity, convenience, and comfort—anyone who dares to try to get in their way risks incurring their wrath.
To stand firm against these pressures, Christians must prioritize their spiritual obligations over their civil liberties. If you have no hopes or expectations, you won't be hurt or frustrated when the world doesn't provide them. Beloved, always keep in mind that God is the source of all blessings (James 1:17). Therefore, submit yourself humbly before Him, and at the appropriate moment, He will exalt you. (James 4:10). Amen. Aamen.