Angry At God
"Do not judge lest you be judged. For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you." (Matthew 7:1,2)
Far too often we hear Christians say they have been angry at God. That attitude exists only when we are out of relationship with God. We may think we aren't, but we really are.
If we were asked if we judge God, we would deny it, yet that is exactly what we do. We feel that God has not responded as He should; therefore we become angry. We judge God from our point of reference, and He has not come up to our expectation.
Judges never sit lower than the people they judge, they always sit in an elevated position. That is what we do when we judge God. We place ourselves higher than God. Sometimes we doubt His word and decide not to conform to His mandates. Doubt is a form of judging, so once again we judge God.
In Numbers 12, Aaron and Miriam were angry at God because He showed favoritism toward Moses. We see God's reaction in verses 9 and 10:
So the anger of the Lord burned against them and He departed. But when the cloud had withdrawn from over the tent, behold, Miriam was leprous, as white as snow. As Aaron turned toward Miriam, behold, she was leprous.
It is impossible for us to doubt without judging. When Eve doubted what God had said about eating of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, she made a judgment. She judged His word, decided it wasn't completely true, and ate of the tree. That costly mistake affected all mankind. There is no way around it, when we doubt God we judge Him.
Unfortunately, when we judge we set in motion God's principle of sowing and reaping. We can call it cause and effect or action and reaction or whatever we want. It is still God's principle that when we judge we can expect to be judged in return. And when we get angry at God, we have judged Him.
When Moses confronted Pharaoh in the book of Exodus, Scripture states that Pharaoh hardened his heart against God. The Hebrew meaning is that Pharaoh rebelled against the directive of God to let His people go. Pharaoh's pride was so great that his heart hardened to the point of dullness. Though he could see God bringing plagues upon his land, he would not change his mind, he just became more angry.
God understood Pharaoh, and Scripture states that God hardened Pharaoh's heart. The Hebrew meaning of the word used in this case is different. It means that God strengthened the hardness of Pharaoh's heart. He knew Pharaoh had to be brought to the point of no alternative but to let the people go.
Pharaoh's heart was so hard and his pride so great that even after he let the people go, he changed his mind and went after them. This gave God an opportunity to demonstrate His protection when He miraculously controlled the Red Sea.
When we get angry at God we lose sight of His perfection. Negative situations in our lives unsettle us. We become unhappy when misfortune strikes and we forget that God works all things together for good. On the surface, the crucifixion seemed to be a terrible turn of events, but God worked it as the vehicle to bring salvation to all mankind.
We get angry at God because we put false expectations upon Him. When we expect Him to act according to our will, we try to bring Him down to our level. But God won't allow us to set the rules, He reserves that right for Himself.
The Pharisees expected Jesus to conform to their rules, but He refused. They hardened their hearts and killed Him. In the process, they killed all possibility for Him to move in their lives. Their anger destroyed any opportunity for a relationship to develop between them.
In effect, we do the same. Relationship always suffers when anger steps in. The hardness of our hearts makes us refuse to consider anything alternative to what we are convinced is right. We pit the knowledge of good we received in the garden of Eden, against the wisdom of God. We judge, we get angry and we destroy the relationship.
God has an edge on us, He knows the end from the beginning, and His ways are not our ways. Unless we accept that as fact, we consistently place false expectancies upon Him, and we are constantly disappointed. Every disappointment gives us another opportunity to be angry. This cycle repeats itself until we accept God as God and His wisdom as perfect.
There are times also when we blame God without considering that He gave us a free will. We bring far more misfortune upon ourselves than God would orchestrate. We don't like to accept blame, so we project the blame onto Him and we get angry.
God told us not to let the sun go down on our anger (Ephesians 4:26). If we let anger incubate, it soon turns to hatred, and hatred is sin. Hatred breeds unforgiveness and takes us further away from God. This means we walk in darkness rather than in His light.
So if we find ourselves getting angry at God, we need to stop and consider the consequences. Then we need to focus upon Him and ask Him some direct questions about our situation. As we journal our questions and His answers, His light eventually penetrates the darkness of the situation, and our perspective changes.
Though we're disciples, things can go wrong, but that is not a time to get angry at God. It is a time to claim Psalm 91, and to seek shelter in His love.
Jesus is King!
P.S. What are you doing of eternal value?
Question for today: Do I ever judge God?