Ira

“Gracious Father, whose blessed Son Jesus Christ came down from heaven to be the true bread which gives life to the world: Evermore give us this bread, that he may live in us, and we in him; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.” – BCP

Ira is Latin for Wrath. One might say this is for the person who is always angry or picking fights. We have many of those in this culture. I grew up in Southern USA, who are stereotyped as a people who are easily angered at someone saying the wrong thing. This is not completely devoid of truth. In the Bible we see the same thing being mentioned in Ephesians 4:26.

Let’s not get too confused here. We must remember that the traditional view of wrath as a deadly sin is more connected to destructive personality. The person who is oppressed or physically injured or has seen this done to someone else has every right to be angry since this is an anger derived from a desire for justice. The anger we are discussing is one that provokes all sorts of destructive circumstances.

What we must be cautious of are violent endeavors and always starting fights. In other words, bloodshed and bullying are to be avoided at all costs. The reason for this is that the Kingdom came as a harbinger of peace. Jesus is even called the Prince of Peace. He even went to a cross without resisting.

Peace is the will of God for humanity. From the creation it has been the desire. In the end, it will be part of our reality. In the present, we must live out this reality as we reflect Christ to everyone. It will not do any good to throw punches and draw blood. We must heal wounds and restore life to the broken and dying.

…he (Jesus) humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross. – Philippians 2:8

 

In what ways do you practice wrath? Do you try to hurt others and try to cause trouble in other people’s lives? Are you willing to put that death and go as far as accepting being a victim who will be rescued? Or do you think that you can plan better than God and rescue yourself?

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