Effective Biblical Counseling can never be reduced to the question, “What does the Bible say about [topic]?” Both life and counseling require more than having the right answer to a question. Counseling (or Christian friendship that seeks to embody the “one another” commands of the New Testament) is when one person joins another on his/her journey to cultivate more of the fruit of the Spirit in his/her life by overcoming some life struggle.
What you find below should be considered the “map” for this journey. God’s Word helps us see both where we are (stuck in sin and/or suffering) and where we want to be. The Summit counseling ministry hopes you find both direction and encouragement for your journey in these passages.
This list is updated periodically.
Our first instinct in anger is to justify our actions/feelings, but Scripture cautions us.
James 1:19-20, “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness that God requires.”
We must admit that our anger reveals our heart. It really is “me” speaking.
Matthew 12:33-37, “Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree bad and its fruit bad, for the tree is known by its fruit. You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil. I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”
Our anger reveals what we desire most in any given moment.
James 4:1-3, “What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.
Our anger is sinful when it makes an offense primarily about us instead of God.
See Numbers 20:1-13
Jesus’ anger in clearing the temple did not prevent those who needed Him (blind and lame) from coming to Him although it communicated effectively to those who rejected Him (chief priests and scribes).
Matthew 21:12-15, “And Jesus entered the temple and drove out all who sold and bought in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money-changers and the seats of those who sold pigeons. He said to them, ‘It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer,’ but you make it a den of robbers.’ And the blind and the lame came to him in the temple, and he healed them. But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying out in the temple, ‘Hosanna to the Son of David!’ they were indignant.”
Christians are commanded replace their sinful anger with expressions of kindness.
Ephesians 4:31-32, “Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”
The slower an individual is to get angry the wiser that person will likely be.
Proverbs 14:29, “Whoever is slow to anger has great understanding, but he who has a hasty temper exalts folly.”
Ecclesiastes 7:9, “Be not quick in your spirit to become angry, for anger lodges in the bosom of fools.”
Sinful anger values “something” more than “someone” and is therefore the root of murder as lust is the root of adultery.
Matthew 5:21-22, “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire.”
Over 50% (8 of 15) of the works of the flesh are anger-related issues.
Galatians 5:19-21, “Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.”
Other Passages to Study: Psalm 4; Proverbs 6:34, 14:17, 15:1, 16:32, 19:11, 19:19, 22:24, 25:28, 27:3, 29:22; Ephesians 4:26; 1 Timothy 2:8;
Other Topics to Consider: Character, Change Process, Communication, Domestic Violence, Emotions (General), Forgiveness (Bitterness), Relationships