"Be Angry and Sin Not!"
A Sampler of excerpts from the book
ye angry, and
not the sun go down
upon your wrath:
give place to
The Popular View
There are about as many views on this
passage as there are commentators. I stay amazed and amused at some
of the absurd ideas concocted about what Paul meant in Ephesians
4:26-27, (the instant passage). Keep
in mind throughout this study, Paul is addressing mature believers
The popular view
and most common interpretation of the instant
passage, and the one I've heard since I was a
small boy, can be distilled down to simply: "...it's
OK to get angry at someone, just don't let it go past dark, just
don't go to bed mad...."
Now that may sound good philosophically; and the
latter part of it may even be good advice. But we are warned and
commanded to “...beware lest any man spoil
you through philosophy and vain deceit....”
Colossians 2:8. Considering these are the "Last
Days", one need only look around and see
all the deception;
much of it coming from slick talkers using words as smooth as honey.
A diligent review of scripture properly translated would show that it
is unlikely the popular view is
what the writer meant. One really shouldn't even need biblical
language skills. Reading the instant passage
in a correct English translation would show the popular
view cannot be correct. You would just need
to know how to read analytically, and apply a little logical
reasoning. While I believe The Wuest Expanded
Translation is the most reliable, I've never
found a perfectly correct English translation....
I have actually read some of the most unbelievable
commentaries on these passages by scholars, educated men of God
(affectionately referenced hereafter as
That is in no way meant to disparage them or their credentials. Some
of these are men have devoted their entire lives to the study of
God's word. I deeply respect them for that. Actually, I've sort of
done that too; and not a little!
So I've earned the right to offer my commentary as well....
about Academic Scholarship
Those who know me with any intimacy are aware of my
love of academic scholarship.
However, scholarship alone is insufficient. We can never allow
scholarship to come at the expense of Holy Spirit illumination. Such
illumination can only come from an intimate relationship with the
Holy Spirit. Both scholarship and illumination
are essential to understanding the more difficult
The instant passage
could serve as “Exhibit A”
in making that case that we desperately need scholarship
to understand scripture, and that scholarship alone is not enough;
scholarship must be coupled with Holy Spirit illumination!
Since we really don't have a reliably correct
translation available for the instant passage, understanding of
biblical language becomes an essential element to the scholarship
side of the equation.
At the risk of sounding ignorant, I will say the
following. Many good scholars believe the days of miracles have
passed. I grew up hearing the old time Pentecostals shout in anointed
testimony things like “...it's too late to
tell me God doesn't heal, work miracles, deliver from devils....”
Well that is true. But many scholars refuse to acknowledge the truth,
and attribute the supernatural to “beelzebub”.
That is a deadly game to willfully play. My point in all this is to
say, it is not arrogant for me to say that these men are wrong about
that. Since I was four years old I have witnessed the miraculous in
the Pentecostal churches during The Great
Healing Revival. I was there, I saw it with
my own eyes, what happened there is not theory with me. My spiritual
father in the faith William Branham, clinched that nail of the
miraculous once and for all for me. So why is it inconceivable that
these men might be wrong about the instant
Let me say again, these men are good decent people,
many of whom have devoted their entire lives to the study and
teaching of God's word. That is a most honorable endeavor. However,
without Holy Spirit illumination, one runs the risk of coming up with
conclusions like the Popular View.
We intend to prove that the Popular View
is flat wrong!
Wholesale Last Days Error
The error in the instant
passage is not isolated. I have heard
atrocious interpolations like the “Be Angry
and Sin Not” error from the instant
passage; and then their contradictory
interpolation of “Make no Friendship with an
Angry Man” error from Proverbs 22:24.
Renowned Greek scholar
Kenneth Wuest correctly translated the first half of the instant
passage as “…be
constantly angry….” So, the knuckleheads
are teaching to be constantly angry,
yet make no friendship with an angry man?
I mean give me a break; they can't have it both ways! Talking about
an opportunity for licensed strife! No wonder unbelievers think the
bible is filled with contradictions! The knuckleheads provided the
rope for the textual hanging!
But consider these other errors and misapplications:
the “Impossible to
Renew Them” error from Hebrews 6:4-6;
the “Forsaking the
Assembly” error from Hebrews 10:25;
the “Sin Willfully”
error from Hebrews 10:26;
the “Great Falling
Away” error from 2 Thessalonians 2:3;
Paul's “Thorn in the
Flesh” from 2 Corinthians 12:1-10;
the “Taking the Name of
the Lord thy God in Vain” error from the
second of third of the Ten Commandments
(depending on which manuscript you read);
the countless other misinterpretations and
misapplications of foundational scriptures;
the little cherry on the top of this heretical
parfait is the “Let Him Not Eat”
error from 2 Thessalonians 3:10-15.
Again, these passages are not merely addressing
but they are related to foundational truths!
“Error” is bad
enough, but “Heresy”
is worse. I'm anyone’s judge, but I am called to be a Watchman
on the Wall!
I mean give me a break, they can't have it both ways!
Then there's the “Impossible to Renew Them”
error from Hebrews 6:4-6; the “Forsaking
the Assembly” error from Hebrews 10:25; the
“Sin Willfully” error
from Hebrews 10:26; the “Great Falling Away”
error from 2 Thessalonians 2:3; Paul's “Thorn
in the Flesh” from 2 Corinthians 12; and
the “Taking the Name of the Lord thy God in
Vain” error from the second of third of the
Ten Commandments (depending
on which manuscript you read); plus countless
other misinterpretations and misapplications of foundational
scriptures. But the cherry on the top of this little heretical
parfait is the “Let Him Not Eat”
error from 2 Thessalonians 3:10-15.
Again, these passages are not incidental doctrines,
but are related to foundational truths! “Error”
is one thing, but “Heresy”
is quite another. If being wrong about these passages
doesn't matter to you, your very eternal future may be in jeopardy.
I'm not the judge, but I am called to be a Watchman
on the Wall!
This passage from 2 Thessalonians 3:10-15, does not
mean anything close to what it is being heralded by Republican
elected officials, conservative talk, and Christian leaders across
our nation. On judgment day, their ignorance of the true meaning of
“Let Him Not Eat” will
not be an excuse. After all, ignorance of the gospel message will be
no excuse to those who never accepted Jesus Christ as savior.
The popular view of Let Him
Not Eat butts up against everything that
Moses taught, the prophets taught, Jesus taught, and His Apostles
taught about helping the poor and disadvantaged. That would mean that
believers would be commanded to not let the likes of Jesus or His
disciples eat! It butts up against nearly 300 passages of scripture
regarding how we treat the poor and needy.
The same Apostle Paul commanded the Romans to
“...feed your enemies....”
Yet he's going to tell the Thessalonians regarding a brother to
“...let him not eat....”;
and then five verses later command them to “...count
him not as an enemy...but...as a brother....”
What? Do they think this is some cruel joke? Paul says to one group
feed the enemy, and the other group starve the brother? These leaders
will pay dearly in the day of judgment! That
is Thus Saith the Lord!
By all appearance, Let Him Not
Eat has become the conservative
mantra. When it comes time to vote on any
genre of government assistance for the poor and needy, the
mantra kicks in. I have heard it declared
many times on television by members of Congress who claim to
represent our Lord Jesus Christ! At least once, I heard it declared
on the floor of the House of Representatives.
There is an horrible spirit behind it that has
actually caused a movement to develop. It has become one of the most
popularly “abused passages”
among those who confess they love
the Lord Jesus Christ with their lips, yet
the way they treat the poor and needy, they show that their
hearts are far from it. I believe it is the
deadliest heresy in the church today, and potentially lethal for our
nation's existence. It is far more dangerous to our nation than
homosexuality, or any
of the national security threats we
currently face. If not corrected, it is certain lead us to divine
A few years ago, I heard a pastor say, “...the
Lord will deal with the church, the same way the church deals with
the poor....” I wish I had been the one to
come up with that phrase. I believe it is prophetically true!
We are nearly finished with the research for the book
we are writing on this very subject. We intend to prove the popular
view of 2 Thessalonians 3:10-15 is wrong,
heretically wrong! We
intend to show what the true and correct
meaning is. Please pray that we can get this
completed, and find a way to get it into the public stream, ASAP!
Again, let me be clear on what I am saying here;
regardless of the level of academic scholarship, without Holy Spirit
illumination error is likely to occur; as well as an unacceptable
high-risk of heresy.
We are actually writing books on these, and other
But I digress....
Many argue that all we need is the Holy Spirit to
understand God's word. Then why did the Apostle Paul (a
scholar who came behind in no spiritual gift);
why would he command us,
not ask us, but
command with apostolic authority, to study
in order that we might show ourselves approved unto God, a workman
that need not feel ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth?
That commandment is chock full of meaning! Why would Paul do that, if
it was as easy as closing our eyes, praying, and then just imagine
the meaning of the instant passage?
After all, Paul received the gospel revelation of all
his teachings directly from Jesus Christ Himself; he did not receive
it from any man. Why didn't Paul direct us to follow his example?
We don't have time or space to waste explaining all
that here. We'll just say, Paul was uniquely called from his mother's
womb, raised as a scholar from his youth, was a virgin, and a host of
other peculiarities unique to Paul. His life was predestined. Paul
had the foundation of a lifetime of scholarship upon which Jesus
built the doctrine to the gentiles.
We're not Paul!
So it is arrogant for anyone to infer that they are
so spiritual that all they need is the Baptism of the Holy Spirit to
know the meaning of those deep truths of scripture. If that were so,
why would we need the gift of Pastor-Teacher?
Why the commandment to study?
When we find another Apostle Paul, I'll accept the argument. Until
then, it's just arrogant talk to me!
I've heard some treat scholarship as if it were
worse. Yet these same people will dig through the dictionary in the
back of their Strong's Concordance,
searching for that elusive nugget to enhance their teaching (nothing
wrong with doing that). When delivering their
sermons, suddenly their countenance begins to glow, their breasts
swell, and as their voice rises they say, “...in
the Greek this word means....” and then
they pause as if they're basking in a SELAH
Then at other times in the same sermon, they might
launch into a rant and disparage scholarship. I've actually heard
some pastors praise people for their inability to correctly pronounce
the Greek words they quote; as if ignorance is to be worn as some
“badge of honor”.
Then why do they cite what they believe are Greek word meanings? It
seems hypocritical to try to have it both ways.
Let me say here that I do not discourage ANYONE from
using their Strong's, or any other resource to search the scriptures.
Nor do I disparage anyone who cannot use the accepted standard
pronunciation of Greek and Hebrew words. I encourage everyone to
excel in the study of the word. What I condemn is the hypocrisy and
jealousy that I have witnessed in some, that makes them publicly
criticize the exegetical skills they secretly envy, and attempt to
feign from their own pulpits.
Well I've had over 62-years of the so-called
I have never known, or known of ANYONE who could properly interpret
the difficult passages by supernatural means alone. William Branham
stands head and shoulders above EVERYONE moving in the supernatural,
whether in the Pentecostal or Charismatic circles. Not since the 1st
century has anyone come close to what God did through
Brother Branham. I know absolutely that he confirmed his supernatural
revelations by means of those around him with academic
I would agree that our
intimate Holy Spirit relationship takes
priority over academic scholarship.
But they are not mutually exclusive. In fact, they not only
compliment one another and co-exist in every true believer's life;
they are both required for obedience. One cannot obey the commandment
to “...study to show thyself approved unto
God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the
word of truth....”; without also
progressing toward academic scholarship.
How often I've heard ignorant statements inferring
that scholarship will kill your anointing. One of the most common
theories among early Pentecostals was that using sermon notes will
drive away the anointing.
Well, academic scholarship
didn't hurt Jesus' anointing. Back in the early 1980s, I
taught a series on Jesus' life and ministry, and His experiences in
Israel. I had to face truths I had never considered about Him before.
One is that Jesus was a scholar. His scholarship did not hurt His
Academic scholarship didn't
hurt Paul's anointing either. Paul's level of scholarship is
undeniable, as he made that very public. He wrote the majority of the
New Testament doctrine; and other Apostle's confirmed his
Apostleship. Yet no other 1st
century figure equals Paul's supernatural exploits.
Also, Paul did not receive his revelation of his message from man; he
got it straight from the Lord Jesus Christ Himself! However, Paul had
an elaborate scholarly Old Testament foundation upon which Jesus
Christ built that revelation.
So, academic scholarship
did not hurt the anointing of Jesus, nor of Paul. Nor
did it diminish the anointing of others on this
side of the reformation. Look at Edwards,
Finney, Wesley, Spurgeon, Moody, Lake, Prince, and Carrin, just to
name a very few of that innumerable lot. These are ALL men who walked
(and thankfully Carrin still walks)
with God, in an extraordinary demonstration of spirit and power. They
are all known for their supernatural exploits, yet also for the value
they placed on scholarship. I might also add that while most agree
that Brother Branham was poorly educated, and he was quite vocal in
his opposition to education to the exclusion of supernatural
experience; he respected “true
biblical scholarship” as a gift from God.
He was surrounded by men with scholarly credentials. His view on
academic scholarship never
hurt his anointing.
Think about it, if it hadn't been for scholars, we
would have no English translations. In fact, if it hadn't been for
one scholar (Paul), we
would have very little New Testament doctrine.
As I have taught for several decades, “...the
only people I've ever heard disparage speaking in tongues, are those
who never legitimately spoke in tongues as the Spirit gave them
utterance; the only people I've heard disparage the demonstration of
spirit and power, are those who have no demonstration of the Holy
Spirit, and no power; and the only people I've ever heard disparage
scholarship, are those who have no scholarship skills or
“Academic Scholarship” should
not be “bad words”,
just like “Spirit Filled”
should not be “bad words”;
at least not among true believers....
Regarding the use of biblical language:
we realize that some people find technical detail like
Greek grammar, profoundly boring. So we will use it sparingly to
avoid any outbreak of "quantum boredom".
However, we are making extraordinary claims here; so
it is incumbent upon us to prove them. When we do use biblical
language, we will try to present it in layman terms, and illustrate
why it is important in that particular context.
So if at any time you feel “bogged
down”, move on to the next paragraph.
However, we believe those who read
all of it through, will be glad they did so.
The following grammar issues
are matters of fact; most are undisputed fact. As stated, we will
avoid delving too deeply into Greek grammar, to prevent any outbreak
We will use what is necessary to prove our case, and
to silence any reasonable critics. Unreasonable critics cannot be
silenced, so we will just ignore them....
So briefly, here the Apostle Paul uses four
imperative mood verbs.
As we will explain later, what that means is these are “direct
orders”; with apostolic
authority attached! These orders are not
optional, we are commanded to do these things, forthwith! When we get
to the corrected translation, these commands should become clear, as
well as the meaning of the passage....
point out that Paul uses the “permissive
imperative” in the first verb, “be
angry”. They say that means Paul was
permitting anger temporarily,
assuming that “everyone does it”
anyway; and therefore “conceding
to human nature”. We will address each of
these assertions one by one....
One fact goes undisputed; Paul is “commanding
us to be angry” with a continuous
Renowned Greek scholar, the late Professor
Kenneth Wuest translated this passage in his Expanded Translation;
“...be constantly angry....”
But, at what are we commanded to be angry, or
at whom, and when?
And for how long, did he say?....
An apostolic amnesty program?
As stated, some scholars claim that in this passage
Paul was merely “conceding” to
our human nature. In
other words, Paul was acknowledging that since “everybody
does it” (everyone
gets angry), he simply provided us this
proverbial "trap door",
or "escape hatch".
I call it an “apostolic amnesty program”;
like “a dump before dark”
I challenge the knuckle-heads
to take these same principles, and apply them to
Christians practicing “illegal drug use”;
and apply them in
the same way they apply them to “being
angry”. That would say to the “Christian
drug abuser” in effect, “enjoy
it all day long, but dump it before sundown”.
Even more effective; why not test these same
principles substituting“Adultery” for
“Anger”. See how
that works out. Does “accommodation to sin”
sound like Paul's Modus
I will refrain from writing “literally”
what I think of these conclusions. I'll just use Paul's
Greek word of choice to describe such, “SKUBALA”!....
Sometimes I wonder, did the knuckle-heads
think before they wrote these things? I honestly don't
mean to be unkind. These are good men, and they are brethren. But
this is the word of God; His holy word! It is to be reverenced,
protected, and defended! So I can't help wondering, where is the
logical reasoning in
their application of this passage? These are exceptionally
Think about what they are saying. They are actually
saying that Paul commanded us to “be angry”;
yet calling the “anger” sin;
yet still permitting the “anger”
to fester for possibly 12-hours or more; yet warning
that the “anger” is
so toxic that it cannot be allowed to go beyond bedtime; and if we do
so, we will be giving “diabolos”
a perpetual place in our household....
The knuckle-heads' reasoning is all over the map!
It's like listening to a liberal defend a political position. Do they
think Paul was a liberal? This sure sounds like a liberal
Further, it would be out of character for Paul (the
meticulous scholar), to write such a
convoluted confusing conflicting contradictory directive; and then
compound the confusion with failing to stress the importance of
restoring the breach, such as: repentance; confessing their
transgression to the target of their anger; asking the target for
forgiveness, and for their prayer for restoration....
So again, was this some “apostolic
amnesty program”; an “everybody
does it” sort of “free
zone” to let it all out? Either way, why
would Paul omit something as important as the steps to restoration of
fellowship? Repentance and confession are conspicuously absent from
this text. Would a scholar of Paul’s caliber
carelessly omit such an important protocol?....
When we sin, that causes a breach of fellowship with
those of whom we’ve transgressed against; whether it be God, or
brethren, or both. There is only one scriptural protocol for
restoring that broken fellowship. To that end, there is no
According to the knuckle-head
theory, Paul stated clearly in his warnings; that anger
was in fact a sin,
that it was too toxic to allow to proceed past sunset, and to do so
was tantamount to giving the devil a key to your front door. So how
can they conclude that Paul was permitting
anger, temporary or otherwise? “Anger”
unchecked, can morph into something so dangerous, so
unpredictable, something that behaves very much like a “radioactive”
Everybody does it!
Anyway, back to addressing the knuckle-heads
and their interpolations. As previously asked, how far
are they willing to take this insane rationale? Adultery? Lying?
Stealing? Idolatry? After all, these days one might correctly say,
"everybody does it"
to these transgressions, at least on some
level. As asked, would the knuckle-heads
apply their same "everybody
does it" rationale to, let's say,
they did with “be angry”?....
Since when did the phrase "everybody does
it" become American Christianity's moral benchmark?....
Well, congratulations to all who embrace such
rationale. That's exactly the reasoning the liberals use to justify
giving condoms to pre-teen school kids. They say, "...look,
everybody does it, and they're all gonna keep doing it; so we might
as well be preventing STD infections and teen pregnancy...."
So if you're going accept any of the former rationale, how can you
possibly argue against the latter?....
Am I the only one who sees the
in this kind of thinking?
Dear reader, never allow ignorant under-qualified
brain-washed “in vitro” bible
scholars, to use human frailty to justify compromising the truth of
God's holy word! Remember, God's word is holy; it encompasses the
commandments and directives of our heavenly Father, the Creator of
the universe; and the words and teachings of our Lord and Savior
Jesus Christ! We should handle His holy word with the appropriate
reverence and due respect....
Again, the popular view and most common
interpretation/application of Ephesians 4:26 is simply: "...it's
OK to get angry at someone, just don't let it go past dark, just
don't go to bed mad...."
The evidence will show that what we have here are
three orders of prohibition; which boils down to simply, “start
Recognize the Difficulties
At first blush, the instant
passage looks pretty straight forward and
clear. But what is lurking just below the surface is not as clear. In
fact it has baffled some scholars; and at least challenged others,
not the least of which was A.T. Robertson (Robertson).
In my opinion, he was the grand-daddy of New Testament Greek
scholarship in 20th century America; and I guess Deissman would be
the great-grand-daddy. Robertson set the standard for modern study of
Koine Greek, as we know it today. Men like Wuest and many others
picked up the torch. Robertson
remains a hero in my world....
Back in the early 1980s, as a New Year's Resolution I
began reading Robertson's
big 1528 page Greek grammar as my daily devotional. Boy
that was a bear! Any Greek student, 2nd year
or beyond, knows what I mean by that. Don't
get me wrong, I LOVE exhaustive
study of God's word in multi-hour long stretches. My wife can attest
that I can get so lost in study that I forget to eat; and that's not
hyperbole. But I lasted less than a month using my Robertson
Grammar as a devotional. It proved to be
too much for me as a devotional resource! When it stopped being
a time of devotion and reflection, I prayerfully changed my course to
reading the Bible again. Consequently, I don't believe I've ever made
a New Year's Resolution since....
...I have found no better or more thorough grammar
reference on Koine Greek than Robertson's. I cherish my Robertson's
Grammar, and my 10-volume set of Kittle. They
transformed my understanding of scripture....
in one of his works the difficulties of this passage. In fact, I've
heard many respected scholars express their belief that this passage
is so complicated that no one can prove its meaning, with absolute
certainty. As cited by Robertson, the first of the four
imperative mood verbs here is in the
Generally speaking, in ancient Greek writings, the
imperative mood verb is
typical found in royal edicts,
letters from superiors to inferiors
such as a master to his servant,
a military commander to those under his
command, etc. When used among
equals, the context usually expresses
urgency. That is
consistent with how the imperative
is used the scriptures as well....
Rest assured as we will see, all this stuff means
So, we have in the instant
passage a direct order, in effect a sort of
four paragraph order if you will;
and each of the four elements are individual commands. Paul is
writing this order with apostolic authority,
which is as if Jesus Christ Himself had issued the order. That raises
this entire order to the highest priority
level; and no part of it is optional!....
Then one might ask, what is this “permissive
imperative” thing? Is Paul now confusing us
with an oxymoron? Was it like "the best
of times and the worst of times?" Was
the Apostle saying, "I permit you and I
command you at the same time?" Well, not
In dealing with NT Greek grammar, sometimes it feels
like there are rules flying at you from every direction. As stated,
we have four imperative mood verbs, and an almost endless list of
rules of grammar, contextual and logical considerations. There's the
rule of two imperatives connected by “kai”,
the rule of “kai” preceding
“me”, the rule of
“me” preceding an
imperative mood verb,
issues of “voice”,
and other factors to consider. Suffice to say, there are a ton of
elements to consider. If you're really searching for the truth, then
to be accurate every detail must be considered. As stated, nothing
here is unimportant....
...for the purpose of this study, we would like to
temporarily put the grammar stuff on the proverbial back-burner (sort
of), and focus a while on context and logic;
but before we do, a couple of exceptions....
Wait! What about this “permissive
Before we abandon the grammar stuff, I want to show
one example of how the “permissive
imperative” can be used, to obviate any
confusion. One of the best examples that should be familiar to all,
is found in Matthew 8:....
What is the Urgency?
How can anyone accept that permitting unmitigated
unqualified anger, even if for daytime hours only? That would be
antagonistic to what Jesus and the Apostles taught? If anger toward a
brother is too toxic for night-time hours, it's too toxic for any
The passion of
that thrives in a medium of
The following is another important reference to
Jesus' teaching. In fact, it is a continuation of Jesus' theme on
context of the Matthew 5:22 reference we've already touched on. We
could fill a volume just on what Jesus taught in this section of The
Sermon, about this particular subject. But we
will keep it contained to Matthew 5:21-30. This one theme is
important to understanding the instant
passage, so we will touch on it. I wish I
could take the time to exposit all of it. But such a tangent is like
a dirt road, that could easily lead us to a point so remote from the
instant passage, that
one might never find their way back. But I must address a few
The following is a snapshot of
Jesus' teaching on
Anger, Forgiveness and
from Matthew 5:21-30:
say unto you,
That whosever is angry with his
brother without a cause
shall be in danger of the
Could Jesus have made this any clearer? As stated,
back in the early 1980s, I taught a series on Jesus' life and
ministry, and His interaction in 1st century Jewish society. I was
struck by richness of His teachings, and His embrace of rabbinic
teaching methodology. But after more than a decade in the legal
field, I have a greater perspective on the legal aspects of what
Jesus taught. In fact, I was amazed to learn how many idioms, and
other 1st century
legal terms of art were used in writing the New Testament.
Revisiting Matthew 5:22, I am reminded of how Jesus
elevated the above referenced offenses. Based on His description of
them, each of the three constitute what is the equivalent of a felony
status offense in our American Law. Each
offense is equally serious, yet each ascends in enhanced punishment.
We can find similar examples in our own justice system; for instance:
I realize the following is a gruesome illustration,
but no more so than Jesus describes in Matthew 5:29-30; 18:6, 8-9.
Consider the following two hypothetical scenarios.
Our justice system tries two defendants, each separate cases, each
charged with First Degree Murder;
or as the television crime shows say to dazzle their audience,
Consider the facts of the case:
Defendant 1, with
premeditation hunted down and found Victim 1,
pulled out his 44-magnum revolver, and then shot and killed
Defendant 2, with
premeditation, stalked, apprehended, and overwhelmed Victim
2, and then pulled out a large knife, and
then while he was still conscious beheaded him;
and then dismembered the corps, and disposed of the
remains in dumpster behind the restaurant where he worked.
Both defendants are charged with Murder
1, both committed heinous acts, both did so
with premeditation, and both offenses resulted in the death of their
victims. So each case has premeditation, a heinous act, and the same
result. But is there anyone who cannot see that Defendant
2's acts were so much more egregious? Yet
that in no way mitigates the acts of Defendant
The writer apologizes for that illustration being a
bit hyperbolic. But as shocking as they may be, and though they may
not be exactly typical, they are based on today's criminal justice
reality. Our law enforcement are forced to deal with these kinds of
offenses with an unacceptable frequency.
Likewise, the three offenses Jesus described in verse
22, are all equal in categorical status. But in God's eyes, each
offense is more egregious than the preceding one.
Oh that the Holy Spirit would open the blossom
to these truths. Then we might see the importance of what Jesus was
teaching; especially looking through the lens of today's society....
In the older manuscripts, the phrase "without
cause" is omitted. That only broadens
the offense to include ANY form of anger for any reason!
We can see that Jesus referenced that since "old
has been an offense worthy of being "in
danger of the judgment". So, even
without knowing biblical language, or the contemporary culture,
common sense tells us by verse 21, that any offense placing one in
jeopardy of "in danger of the judgment",
is a felonious offense.
have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill;
and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment:
But I say unto
you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall
be in danger of the judgment: and
whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the
council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of
shows how serious this matter is:
23 Therefore if
thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy
brother hath ought against thee;
Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy
way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy
if you don't feel like forgiving and reconciling?
try to work reconciliation! Don’t leave the door to the demonic
open any longer than you can help! Because Jesus warned:
Agree with thine adversary quickly...lest...the
adversary deliver thee (up)...and
the judge deliver thee (over),
and thou be cast into prison (bondage).
references were literal to the 1st century Jews;
but are allegorical to 21st century, born again,
spirit-filled believers; but also a grave warning to both. Depending
on the transgression, Jews back then who refused to reconcile with
their brothers faced the risk of imprisonment. Believers in the
Church Age face a different kind of incarceration when we refuse to
be reconciled with our brethren; we call it “demonic
bondage”! Don't risk any stubborn arrogance
causing a breach to backfire on you, and then make you the defendant,
and ultimately the spiritual prisoner....
the current market price on unforgiveness:
There is no
need shopping around for a special bargain, before you purchase your
next batch of “unforgiveness”!
It is a fixed market price, permanently set by the government of
heaven. So no matter who you are, or when and where you buy it, you
will pay the same amount for it. There are no discount rates.
Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no means come
out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost farthing.
Jesus asserting His authority, magnifying the Law of Moses. Jesus is
demonstrating His divine authority over the Law by citing Moses with
“...Ye have heard that it was said....”,
and then declaring “...But I say unto
you....” Only God could utter words that
supersede the Law He gave through Moses. In Christ, sins of the heart
have the same effect before God, as actual sins of the flesh had
Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time,
Thou shalt not commit adultery:
But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman
to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his
how high the stakes really are
unforgiveness and refusing to reconcile:
And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and
cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy
members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast
And if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off, and
cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy
members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast
In the above referenced portion of The
Sermon, Jesus is using barbaric descriptions
of what is preferable to ignoring these warnings. Self mutilation is
preferable than the judgment that awaits him that refuses to forgive
and reconcile. This is not a directive to go out and literally take a
dagger and gouge out an eye, or take a battle ax and lop off a hand.
It is a command to obey the directive in the passage; be reconciled
to the brother! Quickly! ASAP!....
This is the level of priority
Jesus assigns to
His forgiveness and reconciliation
In Matthew 5:24, again from The
Sermon; Jesus is teaching His disciples
divine protocol for offering sacrifices. This is the only begotten
Son of God speaking, giving the divine directive for offering
Jesus described the following scenario. You are in
the middle of offering a sacrifice, in front of the alter. The Holy
Spirit prompts your memory that your brother has ought against you.
Not just if you're angry at him; but even if
you know he's holding anger against you!
Jesus directs you to stop immediately in the middle
of making your offering!
Then to get up, leave your sacrifice on the alter,
and go to that brother face to face, forthwith!
Then, execute the scriptural protocol for
Then, after you have reconciled with him, and only
then do you return to the alter, and resume offering your sacrifice.
Do you sense any urgency in what Jesus was teaching
there? Interrupting a ritual sacrifice, that was commanded by Moses,
while it is already underway? Does it sound like a casual....
In view of the example in the above referenced
passage, does anyone really believe that Paul meant to say, “as
the Lord's chief Apostle, I permit you to get angry, even raging mad,
all day long, as long as you get rid of it before sundown; or per the
popular view, before you go to bed”?
What is it with these
knuckle-heads and before you go to bed?
Do they think demons only come out
Before we proceed to Part 2
Hopefully, the evidence presented thus far has
convinced readers that the so-called Popular
View of the instant
passage is at best questionable, and in my
opinion unacceptable, and....
Paul commanded us to “Be angry
and Sin not”!
Yet we are left with that stinging question, "what
did Paul mean". As stated, we have four
unequivocal apostolic commands here; three prohibitions, and one
We cannot ignore that Paul is actually "commanding
us to be ANGRY" here; and that
fact of grammar is not in dispute. Not only
are we commanded to "be
angry", but we are commanded to "be
continually, or constantly angry". How
can we be continually angry, yet not let the sun go down on our
anger? Confusion Du Juor!
Alright, so it's a given, we are to "be
angry". But, be
angry at what, or at whom, and when; and for
how long did he say....
Then what about that phrase “sin
not”; what did Paul mean by that....
In the end, if we do our job well, all of this should
make sense to you; and you should see what the passage actually
means, and what Paul meant by....
The interpretation and application of this passage
can only be found by examining all the data through grammar,
historical, and cultural, then filtering it through the screen of
logical reasoning; and above all, with Holy Spirit illumination....
When we understand why Jesus used the "permissive
imperative" in the aforementioned
example; we should know why Paul used the “permissive
imperative” in the instant
passage, and therefore what Ephesians 4:26-27
Next we will discuss the logi....
COMING BACK SOON
THIS STUDY IS BEING REVISED
AND PARTS 2 & 3 ARE BEING FINISHED
WE HOPE TO
HAVE IT BACK UP SOON,
© - GERRY PHILLIPS -
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED