If a church rejects or rebukes people who are angry, is the church acting from a place of love or fear? Is such a church angry about people who are angry?
Is it godly to tell angry, hurting and broken people to go to a lonely place or a secular place to get their soul wounds healed before the church can accept such people into their midst?
Did not Jesus come for the brokenhearted and the wounded? Did Jesus not come to bind up the wounds and set the captives free? Is the church behaving like His Bride and Helpmate when she rejects and neglects the brokenhearted, imprisoned and wounded?
Where is the church that can handle the angry people? Where is the church that welcomes the dissatisfied, the dissidents, the detractors, the disenchanted and the disillusioned as David did? Where is the church that embraces the unlovely and transforms them, disciples them into mighty fighting warriors for the Kingdom as David did with those dissatisfied dissidents and rebels who came to him when he was in the cave at Adullam (see 1 Samuel 22 for more details)?
Where is the church that knows that Paul was once Saul? Where is the church with a love so reckless and fearless and heavenly violent that it can bravely and boldly answer the Lord’s call to go to Saul and remove the scales from his eyes? Where is the church so courageous that it can be sons and daughters of encouragement (like Barnabas, whose name means son of encouragement) to those seeking the Lord from a place of anger, legalism and intensely passionate and fierce devotion (like Saul on his journey to becoming Paul)?
Why is the church afraid of angry people when one of the angriest and most murderous men that we know wrote most of the New Testament? What does the church have to fear from such people whom the Lord can touch and use to advance the Kingdom farther than any lukewarm convert ever could?
How often is church reformation and revival birthed from people who are angry with the status quo and stagnant flow of the existing church? How often is anger the catalyst for change and revitalization in the church?
How often is the anger that comes against the church used to lift her up and exalt her higher than she could ever go on her own (Stephen’s martyrdom, John the Baptist’s beheading, Jesus’ crucifixion and on and on – the testimonies traverse the centuries)?
Why then isn’t the church persistently pursuing the angry people within and without her walls?
What does the church, who is grounded in the love of God, have to fear from anyone who is angry with her? Is it not the Lord who saves? Is it not the Lord who delivers us from all of our enemies? Is it not the Lord who redeems? Is the battle not the Lord’s? Is the arm of the Lord too short to reach even the angriest of people?
Did not the Lord convert Saul and transform him into Paul? Does the church still fear Saul? Does the church not revere and gain endless inspiration and revelation from Paul’s passionate and loving letters to her? Did not the one who relentlessly attacked the church become one of her greatest lovers, protectors, teachers, providers and pursuers? Did not Saul’s murderous passion become the fiercest of loving passions in Paul? How is it that the church is so quick to forget and so hasty to negate the apostle Paul’s powerful testimony of conversion? Is such a testimony not life and light, bread and wine, faith and fire to the Bride of Christ?
What does the church have to fear from anyone who is angry with her?
To hear more of my thoughts on anger and anger haters, check out my new poetry reading on my Spoken page - For the Love of Anger Haters. (Clink the link below to go check it out.)