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(Second in a series on anger)

Earl & Diane Rodd

This pamphlet is the continuation of an earlier pamphlet entitled, "Dealing with Anger". We pray this study concerning some other aspects of anger will be enlightening and encouraging to homeschooling mothers whose children's behavior may at times tempt them to "be angry and unforgiving."

Conquering Anger

(Second in a series)

Families Honoring Christ

"But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart
and a good conscience and a sincere faith."

Earl & Diane Rodd
6044 Pine Creek St. N.W. North Canton, OH 44720

Phone: (330) 305-9318

5th edition - July 1996

6th edition - May 1998

Permission is granted to copy this article for personal sharing
but not for sale or other commercial purposes.

FHC is an Ohio based ministry providing information, encouragement
and fellowship to Christian families, natural and spiritual.

Unless otherwise noted, All Scripture quotations are from the

New American Standard Bible, Copyright 1988,

The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.

Additional copies of this booklet may be ordered from FHC by writing to the above address. The price is on the back cover of this booklet. Please add $1.50 for shipping regardless of the number of copies. A full listing of other books and booklets on related topics is also available from FHC at the above address.

Conquering Anger

Ephesians 3:14
14. For this reason, I bow my knees before the Father,
15. from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name,
16. that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man;
17. so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; {and} that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
18. may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth,
19. and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fulness of God.
20. Now to Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us,
21. to Him {be} the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.

The following essay is the continuation of an another pamphlet entitled, "Dealing with Anger." We pray this study concerning some other aspects of anger will be enlightening and encouraging to homeschooling mothers whose children's behavior may at times tempt them to "be angry and unforgiving." Unforgiveness in the heart towards any person is torment and bondage and is a major root cause for much defeat, discouragement and depression.

Proverbs 19:11
11. A man's discretion makes him slow to anger, And it is his glory to overlook a transgression.


Moses' Anger with No Sin
Because Moses knew that God's character included "slow to anger" (Exodus 34 :6-9), Moses experienced times of anger, but he didn't sin.

  1. Moses' relationship with Pharaoh and his hard heart caused Moses to be angry, but we do not see this anger acknowledged by the Lord as sin.

    Exodus 11:7
    7. 'But against any of the sons of Israel a dog shall not {even} bark, whether against man or beast, that you may understand how the \Lord\ makes a distinction between Egypt and Israel.'
    8. "And all these your servants will come down to me and bow themselves before me, saying, 'Go out, you and all the people who follow you,' and after that I will go out." And he went out from Pharaoh in hot anger.

  2. Moses' relationship with the Israelites and their rebellion and idolatry also caused Moses to be angry, but as before, the Lord makes no mention of Moses' anger as being sinful.

    Exodus 16:20
    20. But they did not listen to Moses, and some left part of it until morning, and it bred worms and became foul; and Moses was angry with them.

    Exodus 32:19
    19. And it came about, as soon as Moses came near the camp, that he saw the calf and {the} dancing; and Moses' anger burned, and he threw the tablets from his hands and shattered them at the foot of the mountain.

    Exodus 32:22
    22. And Aaron said, "Do not let the anger of my lord burn; you know the people yourself, that they are prone to evil.

    Aaron cautioned Moses about his anger in this circumstance because he was afraid Moses would vent his anger on him. We must remember that Moses once killed a man because his sense of justice was not yet tempered by His relationship with the Lord.

  3. Moses was angry with Aaron's sons (Eleazar and Ithamar) who did not eat the sin offering when their two brothers (Nadab and Abihu) were instantly consumed "for offering strange fire before the Lord" which He did not command.

    Leviticus 10:16
    16. But Moses searched carefully for the goat of the sin offering, and behold, it had been burned up! So he was angry with Aaron's surviving sons Eleazar and Ithamar, saying,

    On this occasion Aaron's explanation appeased Moses' anger, and there is no mention of sin.

  4. Moses' relationship with Korah, Dothan and Abiram caused Moses "to burn with anger". Korah and some other Levites were upset with Moses because the Lord was dealing with sin in the midst of the people.
    1. Numbers 11 :1-10 - Moses was displeased and thought the complaining of the people was evil, but he still interceded for them.
    2. Numbers 12 :1-16 - Moses had to intercede for Miriam's leprosy when the spirit of partiality (racism) caused Miriam to reject Moses' wife and thus try to exalt herself.
    3. Numbers 13 & 14 - Moses interceded for the lives of the Israelites when the ten spies brought back a negative report that caused a whole generation to go into doubt and unbelief and lose their inheritance.
    4. Numbers 15 :32-36 - A man had to be stoned for violating the rules of the Sabbath.
    It is out of these circumstances just mentioned that Korah tried to exalt himself. Korah showed he was not a true example (leader) for God's people because he didn't understand godly holiness. Korah's rebellion was not against Moses' leadership. His rebellion was really against God who had demonstrated His standard of holiness and obedience (Numbers 16 :30). Korah was not content with God's appointment of his assigned duties within the tabernacle as a Levite. Korah wanted Moses' responsibilities (Numbers 16 :18-11). Korah proved he was not an example (leader) for God's people when he refused to acknowledge the rebellion and stubborn obstinance of the people (Numbers 16 :3) by defending them rather than interceding for them. When Korah pronounced holiness upon a people whom God Himself had declared as unbelieving, idolatrous, stiff-necked and unthankful, Moses immediately interceded (Numbers 16 :4).

    When Dathan and Abiram refused to answer Moses' summons (Numbers 16 :12), Moses vented his anger directly to the Lord.

    Numbers 16:15
    15. Then Moses became very angry and said to the \Lord,\ "Do not regard their offering! I have not taken a single donkey from them, nor have I done harm to any of them."

    In the midst of God's immediate judgment of splitting earth and fire that consumed these men, their families and all their possessions, Moses' attitude of anger is never acquainted with sin.

A close scrutiny of every one of these circumstances of the disobedience and rebellion that Moses faced, shows that human anger that results in immediate prayer and intercession is not evil or sinful.

The New Testament teaches the same principle

Ephesians 4:26
26. \Be angry, and\ {yet} \do not sin;\ do not let the sun go down on your anger,
27. and do not give the devil an opportunity.

Moses' Anger with Sin

However, even though Moses interceded many times for God's mercy to displace His wrath against the nation of Israel, Moses also fell to the temptation to "be angry" in such a way that he then sinned. A few chapters later in Numbers the following account is given.

Numbers 20:1
1. Then the sons of Israel, the whole congregation, came to the wilderness of Zin in the first month; and the people stayed at Kadesh. Now Miriam died there and was buried there.
2. And there was no water for the congregation; and they assembled themselves against Moses and Aaron.
3. The people thus contended with Moses and spoke, saying, "If only we had perished when our brothers perished before the \Lord\!
4. "Why then have you brought the \Lord's\ assembly into this wilderness, for us and our beasts to die here?
5. "And why have you made us come up from Egypt, to bring us in to this wretched place? It is not a place of grain or figs or vines or pomegranates, nor is there water to drink."
6. Then Moses and Aaron came in from the presence of the assembly to the doorway of the tent of meeting, and fell on their faces. Then the glory of the \Lord\ appeared to them;
7. and the \Lord\ spoke to Moses, saying,
8. "Take the rod; and you and your brother Aaron assemble the congregation and speak to the rock before their eyes, that it may yield its water. You shall thus bring forth water for them out of the rock and let the congregation and their beasts drink."
9. So Moses took the rod from before the \Lord,\ just as He had commanded him;
10. and Moses and Aaron gathered the assembly before the rock. And he said to them, "Listen now, you rebels; shall we bring forth water for you out of this rock?"
11. Then Moses lifted up his hand and struck the rock twice with his rod; and water came forth abundantly, and the congregation and their beasts drank.
12. But the \Lord\ said to Moses and Aaron, "Because you have not believed Me, to treat Me as holy in the sight of the sons of Israel, therefore you shall not bring this assembly into the land which I have given them."
13. Those {were} the waters of Meribah, because the sons of Israel contended with the \Lord,\ and He proved Himself holy among them.

Like Moses we are to speak to the rock. We are to pray and intercede to Christ, our rock for His miraculous provision. Then our family will see God's holiness.

Even though no anger of Moses is explicitly mentioned in this passage, Moses himself reiterates this event three different times with these words.

Deuteronomy 1:37
37. "The \Lord\ was angry with me also on your account, saying, 'Not even you shall enter there.

Deuteronomy 3:24
24. 'O Lord \God,\ Thou hast begun to show Thy servant Thy greatness and Thy strong hand; for what god is there in heaven or on earth who can do such works and mighty acts as Thine?
25. 'Let me, I pray, cross over and see the fair land that is beyond the Jordan, that good hill country and Lebanon.'
26. "But the \Lord\ was angry with me on your account, and would not listen to me; and the \Lord\ said to me, 'Enough! Speak to Me no more of this matter.

Deuteronomy 4:21
21. "Now the \Lord\ was angry with me on your account, and swore that I should not cross the Jordan, and that I should not enter the good land which the \Lord\ your God is giving you as an inheritance.
22. "For I shall die in this land, I shall not cross the Jordan, but you shall cross and take possession of this good land.
23. "So watch yourselves, lest you forget the covenant of the \Lord\ your God, which He made with you, and make for yourselves a graven image in the form of anything {against} which the \Lord\ your God has commanded you.

Unbelief: root of sin
Why was the Lord so angry with Moses? What did Moses do that caused the Lord to respond to him in anger? What are we supposed to learn from this Old Testament saint? God Himself told Moses that the root of his disobedience was unbelief (Num 20 :12). In obedience to the following New Testament exhortation we parents need to be sure we are fleeing from all forms of self-idolatry, doubt and unbelief. We must continually seek the Lord to provide His way of escape out of sinful anger.

I Corinthians 10:11
11. Now these things happened to them as an example, and they were written for our instruction, upon whom the ends of the ages have come.
12. Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.
13. No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure it.
14. Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry.


The written word of God reveals that Moses displayed both types of anger, and we have seen that unbelief and sinful anger caused him to disobey God's instructions and lose the privilege of going into the promised land with Joshua and Caleb. We must realize that we, like Moses, may find ourselves in similar situations in which our unbelief and anger could move us to disobey our Lord (self-idolatry). It is possible to think we have prayed correctly about a child's rebellion and sin because we have done it many times before, and, like Moses, it is part of our lifestyle. However, if that prayer doesn't touch the depths of our own spirit, if that prayer doesn't expose any hidden unbelief or unforgiveness in our own heart, we may find ourselves in a place where we personally disobey God's instructions to us in other matters, and we sin by setting an example of disobedience to our children. However, Proverbs 19 :11 first mentioned in this essay should give us much hope because it says that it is discretion that makes a person "slow to anger." Thus it must be possible to discover what discretion is and ask the Lord to give us this revelation into His character quality so that we might be able to obey His commands in the power of His Spirit and see His character revealed in and through us to our children.

Wisdom and Discretion Work Together
Discretion is the Hebrew word mizimmah (4209) which means purpose, discretion or device. The following scriptures where this Hebrew word occurs is significant to this study.

Proverbs 1:4
4. To give prudence to the naive, To the youth knowledge and discretion,

The context of this verse is the introduction to Solomon's Book of Proverbs which promises certain qualities or character changes to the one who makes Proverbs a book of daily study. Thus one way to receive discretion is to read the Proverbs and allow the Holy Spirit to use them as a mirror to reveal unbelief so that we might repent and allow Christ's life and character to come forth.

Proverbs 2:11
11. Discretion will guard you, Understanding will watch over you,

In this passage we learn that discretion is a form of protection or a guard, so it is clear that this is something we really should desire to have as a daily part of our lives.

Proverbs 3:21
21. My son, let them not depart from your sight; Keep sound wisdom and discretion ,

This passage teaches us that discretion is something of value that we are to keep, but this verse also implies that it is possible to lose discretion if we aren't diligent.

Proverbs 5:1
1. My son, give attention to my wisdom, Incline your ear to my understanding;
2. That you may observe discretion , And your lips may reserve knowledge.

The wisdom of God contained in the Proverbs and listening to God's understanding that is also contained in them is necessary for us to be able to obey discretion. When discretion is part of our life, our lips will speak forth knowledge! This passage may also imply that I need revelation into God's wisdom and understanding to be able to "see" or observe discretion operating in myself or in another.

The next Proverb teaches the same principle.

Proverbs 8:12
12. "I, wisdom, dwell with prudence, And I find knowledge {and} discretion .

The passage teaches that dwelling with wisdom is the way to find discretion . According to the following scripture this is exactly the fruit that should come forth when we are abiding in Christ.

I Corinthians 1:30
30. But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption,
31. that, just as it is written, "\Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord.\"

Thus when I abide in Christ and He abides in me, I am in the place to receive discretion. I will find it. It will become mine.

The following scripture has an unusual translation for mizimmah .

Proverbs 14:17
17. A quick-tempered man acts foolishly, And a man of evil devices is hated.

When a person acts foolishly, the root cause is really a quick-temper. If I do not forgive the foolishness of my children the minute it asserts itself, that foolishness has the legal right to latch onto me, and when it does, I will move with a quick-temper rather than demonstrating the example of God who is "slow to anger."

II Corinthians 2:10
10. But whom you forgive anything, I {forgive} also; for indeed what I have forgiven, if I have forgiven anything, {I did it} for your sakes in the presence of Christ,
11. in order that no advantage be taken of us by Satan; for we are not ignorant of his schemes.

The deception that occurs during these "trying" moments is the logical conclusion that it is the foolishness of my child that is making me angry. The reality of such situations is the child's foolishness is a "temptation" for the mother. The temptation occurs to see if the mother will forgive the child immediately and be "slow to anger" or be unforgiving and be an example of ungodly behavior. Too many homeschooling mothers are under tremendous pressure for their children to be "model" examples of perfectly trained children. Even the scriptures can be used often by the enemy to bring mothers under illegal guilt and condemnation. Parents are not responsible for a child's behavior. The child is responsible for his own behavior. Parents are responsible to correct that wrong behavior in love, faith, and forgiveness when foolishness is allowed to enter the home through the child. If the mother moves in "quick-temper" rather than with wisdom and discretion, she then exposes her own foolishness, and the enemy has won a victory. Jesus told his disciples,

Matthew 26:41
41. "Keep watching and praying, that you may not enter into temptation; the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak."

Grief and Sorrow
When a child acts foolishly, there is more than one battle that must be fought and won. The enemy has succeeded in getting one member of the family (the child) to obey his voice. However, the following Proverbs will help us understand the dynamics of the spiritual battle that is being waged against the mother at exactly the same time.

Proverbs 10:1
1. The proverbs of Solomon. #A wise son makes a father glad, But a foolish son is a grief to his mother.

The minute foolishness is exposed in a child, the mother experiences grief. The Hebrew word for grief is tugah (8424) which is also translated grief or sorrow. Tugah is translated as grief in the following scripture.

Psalms 119:28
28. My soul weeps because of grief; Strengthen me according to Thy word.

The idea in this passage of the soul weeping doesn't necessarily mean crying with tears. The margin rendering says the soul "drops". When foolishness in a child confronts a mother, the mother is automatically in a defensive position. She is no longer on the offensive in this battle; her soul (her mind, will and emotions) have been dealt a hard blow, and unless she immediately moves in the strength and power of the Holy Spirit and His word, she will continually get weaker in this battle until she is totally defeated. Satan's desire is to have two foolish people battling each other rather than one wise, strong mother standing firm for the spiritual life of her child.

In the following verse tugah is translated sorrow .

Proverbs 17:21
21. He who begets a fool {does so} to his sorrow, And the father of a fool has no joy.

This scripture adds a further dimension to the spiritual battle that is raging. The mother sees and experiences the foolish behavior. The father may be working out of the home or if he works at home, he may not be present or able to deal with the foolish behavior of the child, so it is under the mother's jurisdiction. However, the mother's faith is under attack at this point because her spirit knows if the foolishness is not eradicated at the root level and is allowed to become a habit, her husband will lose his joy. Because this is a spiritual battle and not a physical, tangible one, the father may have lost his joy while on the job and have no idea that his child's behavior at home is connected to the battle he is facing at work. Thus this satanic attack needs to be discerned correctly by the mother and the father. When the father does return to the home scene, he needs to listen very carefully to the mother. Because the father wasn't present, he has to discern correctly what has actually occurred and what now needs to be done with the child. However, before he does so, he needs to totally support the mother whose soul realm has been severely attacked. The Hebrew word that we have just studied is derived from yagah (3013) which means "to suffer."

The following Proverb clearly delineates just how serious foolishness in a child is to the mother and how much she is really suffering and how much she must do to be an overcomer in the situation.

Proverbs 15:20
20. A wise son makes a father glad, But a foolish man despises his mother.

The act of foolishness in a child no matter how insignificant puts a mother in a wounded despised condition. Thoughts of doubt, unbelief, insecurity, and a lack of confidence etc. have to be fought off, and she may not have been very successful at doing so. The father may need to help the mother pray through some of this feeling of contempt so that faith, love and forgiveness are truly established and operating within the mother.

I Peter 3:7
7. You husbands likewise, live with {your wives} in an understanding way, as with a weaker vessel, since she is a woman; and grant her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered.

Copyright by Earl & Diane Rodd