Third Sunday in Lent

As Christians, is it ever right to be angry?  Is it ever right to show hatred?  In truth, most Christians shy away from these character traits. Perhaps, as children, we have been overly influenced by Sunday school messages of ‘Gentle Jesus, meek and mild’.  In our churches, we emphasise love, forgiveness and ‘turning the other cheek’.  Anger and hatred do not seem to be a feature of the modern church.  Nevertheless, is there a place for anger and hatred in our Christian ministry?  The Bible passage for this week, the third week in Lent, is the account of Jesus overturning the tables of the money lenders in the temple.  This is one of the times in Jesus’ life where he demonstrates anger – profound anger.  I wonder whether we, as modern day followers of Jesus, should be angrier.  Angry at the injustices of poverty, homelessness, sex trafficking and countless other ills that confront our world.  In a society where the gap between rich and poor is growing ever wider, shouldn’t we vent our righteous anger by speaking up against these divisions in our society? What about hatred?  If we are simply passive towards social injustice then we will not be sufficiently motivated to act.  If we hate injustice, we will have a greater incentive to put right the wrongs.  Therefore, in answer to the question posed at the beginning, yes, I believe it can be right to be angry and to hate injustice.  More importantly, this was precisely the attitude shown by Jesus as he confronted the social ills of his day where the bankers were ‘fleecing’ the poor people in the name of religion.

DISCIPLESHIP TRAINING COURSE

at Emmanuel Church

Next session:

Training planned for the Summer of 2018 following the end of the School of Theology lectures

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations”
Matthew 28:19

 

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