Psalm 4:4: “Be angry, and do not sin. / Meditate within your heart on your bed, and be still. / Selah”

July 8th, 2017 by Pastor Ed in devotional

This statement “be angry, and do not sin” could be better translated as “in your anger, do not sin.” The Hebrew word translated angry means to tremble or shake with hostile feelings. David is telling us the correct way to handle our anger against someone who has wronged us. Selah is technically a musical note, telling the musicians to either rest here or hold the note. To the reader today, it tells us to pause and think about the concept, raising it up to God. How critical it is that we carefully consider the repercussions that come when we let our anger control us and we say things that can never be taken back.

It reminds me of the old story about anger called The Fence. There was a little boy with a bad temper. His father gave him a bag of nails and told him that every time he lost his temper he had to hammer a nail in the back fence. The first day the boy drove 37 nails into the fence. Then it gradually dwindled down. He discovered it was easier to hold his temper than to constantly be driving nails into the fence. Finally the day came when the boy didn’t lose his temper at all. He told his father about it and the father suggested that he now pull out one nail for each day he was able to hold his temper. The days passed and the young boy was finally able to tell his father that all the nails were gone. The father took his son by the hand and led him to the fence. He said, “You’ve done well, my son; but look at all the holes in the fence. The fence will never be the same. When you say things in anger, they leave scars, just like these holes. If you put a knife in a man and draw it out, it won’t matter how many times you say ‘I’m sorry,’ the wound will still be there. A verbal wound is as bad as a physical one.”

“LORD, when we are upset today, help us to hold our tongue.”