This is a comment from a reader on facebook that I would like to share with you. Here was my post...
"It's interesting to me that the people that are so hell bent on preaching the wrath and vengeance of God do so out of a spirit of wrath and vengeance. Let's not forget..."For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God." James 1:20"
And here was his response...
"Insisting that when the NT says "Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from GOD'S WRATH through him!" the authors of the NT meant it, isn't the equivalent of doing so "in a spirit of wrath and judgment." Paul wouldn't be enthused about people revising what he taught about Jesus' death; the one that was "cursed" by God for us (Gal. 3:10-14). Consider it a good thing to be corrected for teaching unbiblical concepts; you make it out to be a character flaw in the person correcting you.
The verse you quote in James isn't about condemning getting angry; it's about condemning getting angry at something without listening and doing so in arrogance, elitism, "filthiness" and "wickedness." James' book was VERY angry. Being angry is a good thing. It means you're awake.
When people taught a different message of the cross, Paul called them "dogs," "swine" and "fools" as well as telling them to "emasculate themselves" and "be accursed." Point being, strong rebuke is necessary in light of strong resolve to deviate from NT teaching. Denying that Jesus quenched the wrath of God or saved us from the wrath of God is unbiblical and in need of correction.
It may be worth reading the whole book of James in one sitting instead of misapplying 1:20 outside the context of James' sharp shooting of compromise in the church. The recipients of James' book got much more of an earful than you have I'm sure. He was a heavy hitter.
Cherie, your blogs are serious deviations from the NT teaching on wrath, God's nature and character and the cross."
Well...I have never claimed this blog to be orthodoxy or theology. In have never been to seminary or taken any formal theology. I have done a 6 month discipleship training, a 3 month biblical studies course and a 3 month worship, intercession and spiritual warfare course. That's it. That is why this is a personal blog of my thoughts and questions that I feel I am being humble and open in sharing with you. I have never claimed to have all the answers and don't believe a person has ever walked the earth that has. With exception to my personal Lord and Savior Jesus.
I want to make example of the spirit of malice that is poisoning the portions of the church and is hindering the lost from the freedom of trusting a loving God who longs for relationship. It is obviously also hindering relationships between fellow believers. That's not right. The word heretic and apostate are being thrown around today with the greatest of ease and honestly I am disgusted by it. I don't expect everyone will agree with me or what my blog says, but as brothers and sisters in Christ we are commanded to love one another and edify one another. Not burn one another at the stake!
I did however takes this young man's advice. I sat and read the book of James in one setting. I hadn't done that in awhile. Here are some of the verses that stood out to me in light of this guy's comment.
If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. Jam 1:5
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. Jam 1:17
My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, Jam 1:19
Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Jam 1:22
If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless. Jam 1:26
If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture, "Love your neighbor as yourself," you are doing right. Jam 2:8
Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom,
because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment! Jam 2:12-13
Likewise the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. Jam 3:5-6
Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be. Jam 3:10
Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show it by his good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. Jam 3:13
But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. Such "wisdom" does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, of the devil. For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice. But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Jam 3:14-17
Peacemakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness. Jam 3:18
But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: "God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. Jam 4:6
Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up. Jam 4:10
Brothers, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against his brother or judges him speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it. There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you-who are you to judge your neighbor?
Don't grumble against each other, brothers, or you will be judged. The Judge is standing at the door! Jam 5:9
The Lord is full of compassion and mercy. Jam 5:11
The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. Jam 5:16
My brothers, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring him back, remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death and cover over a multitude of sins. Jam 5:19-20
With that said, I'm wondering when was the last time that young man took his own advice and read the book of James? I do not see that James was angry. All I see is a call to love, to have compassion, mercy, humility, peace, grace and righteousness. My personal goal will always be to be Christ like and not Theology like. That is the heart of this blog! To worship God and not worship theology. To read His word with conviction of my heart and His Spirit in me not the theology of man and the sometimes spirit of wrath.