I Choose to Live
Part 5: Anger as a Tool of
Manipulation and Redemption
Sabbath Day Sermon, Saturday 13 November 2004
Click here for Part 4
"Where the Ruach (Spirit) of Yahweh is, there is freedom" (2 Cor.3:17) has been our theme now for the last month as we try to make clear distinctions between spiritual freedom and carnal bondage. We have recently been looking at amniotics and last week came to understand that Yahweh sends us Egyptian-like plagues to get us out of our demonic and carnal ruts. The more discerning Christian understands, therefore, that not all difficulties we experience are the work of the enemy but are divinely sanctioned out of love in order to bring us to a point where we come to see the brutal truth about slavery and to desire freedom with all our souls. I can't honestly say I like the methodology, having tasted its bitterness often enough myself in the hardships of life, but I have certainly seen its positive fruits.
Last week we also broached the sensitive yet critically important subject of manipulation which masquerades as true love but which is not. Worse, it comes in a myriad of forms to deceive and enslave. Let's see today how Israel finally broke out of the illusory comfort of her captivity by looking at one of the most common of human emotions, anger.
Aggression is one of the most common tools of control used by man. And once a person - particularly an amniotic - has discovered this tool, he may start getting bolder and try out other things.
When I was investigating Buddhism I was taught that anger was evil no matter what. I remember when I was having a discussion with a Japanese woman about spirituality many years ago and when she started going round in circles evading simple logic I became very annoyed with her. She reprimanded me and said that my anger, mild though it had been, was negative and therefore wrong. In that way she evaded the untruths she was telling and was able to manipulate me out of expressing my righteous indignation. In order to have a discussion one had to be calm to be accepted, and yet in truth all that this achieved was to perpetuate the circle of deception and control.
Anger is, as we know scripturally, a very dangerous thing and there are not a few warnings about it. However it does surprise some people who have been conditioned by oriental thinking to discover that there is such a thing as permissible anger as well as redemptive anger. But that righteous anger never manifests on its own. We read of Yah'shua (Jesus) Himself:
"He entered the synagogue again, and a man was there who had a withered hand. So they watched Him closely, whether He would heal him on the Sabbath, so that they might accuse Him. And He said to the man who had the withered hand, "Step forward." Then He said to them, "Is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?" But they kept silent. And when He had looked around at them with anger, being grieved by the hardness of their hearts, He said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." And he stretched it out, and his hand was restored as whole as the other. Then the Pharisees went out and immediately plotted with the Herodians against Him, how they might destroy Him" (Mark 3:1-6, NKJV).
Please notice carefully that Yah'shua's (Jesus') anger was coupled with grief - not just any old grief, mind you, but grief at the hardness of the Pharisees' heart. Here honest, righteous anger is a blessing - it is an expression of utter revulsion at the kind of religious hypocrisy that would deny a man Yahweh's blessings, in this case the blessing of healing. It is an anger at an abuse of Scripture and therefore a blackening of Yahweh's Name. Yes, we may be angry, but only if it is Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit)-driven. And if it is Ruach (Spirit)-driven, its driving force will always be love and salvation. Righteous anger is not a bad temper and it is not manipulation. The apostle Paul says:
"Therefore, putting away lying, "Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbour," for we are members of one another. Be angry, and do not sin": do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil" (Eph.4:25-27, NKJV).
In other words, there is one form of anger which leads to redemption and another which leads to sin. And woe unto the person who mixes them up!
If being angry with someone will save a life, be angry. If it will make someone come out of an illusion and see the truth, be angry. But how can you know your anger will lead to a positive outcome? The answer is that unless you have prophetic insight, you don't know, which is why you must walk in the Ruach (Spirit) and know Yah'shua's (Jesus') anger in order to be safely and redemptively angry with your fellow man. You have to be discerning. If you are uncertain, keep your cool.
Dishonest anger is not the result of love for someone else. Dishonest anger is born of the desire to get your own way and is therefore a manipulating tool. Dishonest anger is not expressed for the welfare of the other person but for self, for the manipulator's sake only. Then is becomes an instrument of destruction and wounding. The desired blessing of unrighteous anger is not the blessing of the one you are being angry with so that he can be delivered from sin and walk in the freedom of the Ruach (Spirit) but the very opposite. Manipulating anger is to precisely keep the other person from becoming what Yahweh wants him to be so that the manipulator can sustain his artificial world of comfort and slavery. Why do you think the Israelites got so angry at Moses when the plagues started making life tougher for them? Was it righteous anger? No, they were angry because they thought Moses' business was the exact opposite of the salvation of Yahweh - they thought it meant more slavery. Yet it was the prelude to full deliverance if in the short term it added to their discomfort.
Honest anger is born of the death of self and love for the other and is willing to risk loss of acceptance and position if only it will set the other free to become. Dishonest anger is the exact opposite. It is born of self-will as a technique and the one using it would not dare to use it if he thought he might suffer some sort of loss because of it. It is used precisely as a weapon of control. Its aim is to keep for self, not for the other. It is, in short, possessive anger. It's purpose is to prevent the other from growing into a free spiritual child of Yahweh so that it becomes an extension of self, a satellite in the manipulator's orbit.
Now as you can well imagine there are all kinds of unrighteous, manipulative anger. It is frequently used as a tool for revenge, the more ingeniously so when it is coupled with a hard luck story and personal pain (often self-inflicted to curry sympathy). The human soul has the potential, it would seem, for infinite deviousness. The reason a lot of marriages fail is because couples have never been delivered from these cycles of anger and manipulation learned in their parental homes. It's the only lifestyle they know so marriage becomes a power game. One day the husband assumes the power-rôle, and the next it is the wife's turn. One yells and raves while the other acts submissive, and then the rôles switch again. Whoever has the truth, whichever one managed to get hold of the recognised righteousness of the moment is entitled to the 'power surge'. So they battle it out, each one trying to get closer to the truth in order to dominate. It's a delusion, brethren and sisters, and yet this forms the basis of most family disputes, the false thinking being that whoever has the best grasp of truth has 'the power' to make everyone else submit. Truth then becomes an instrument of unrighteous dominion and if it's a woman doing it, it is another version of the 'Jezebel spirit' (the 'Saul spirit' in men). But making others submit to truth has nothing to do with Christianity at all - indeed, its the basis of denominational strife, like the Catholic inquisition, and all attempts to force unbelievers to believe and knuckle under. It is entirely devilish even if the excuse appears to be the propagation of truth. It's spirit is of Satan no matter what the goal is supposed to be.
How do you spiritually heal manipulators? What is the root of this problem? The authority of Christ breaks inner vows. Friendship overcomes hearts of stone. Forgiveness washes away guilt. Teasing helps a performer quit. A spiritual midwife helps an amniotic rebirth into life. And a minister can do all of these things for his client. But nothing can help a manipulator if he does not want to quit. Of course, free agency is the key to all deliverance (you can't force someone to be healed against his will). When it comes to amniosis and manipulation, though, nothing but personal, individual, inner decision can help the manipulator get free and release his captives. The only way to help a manipulator is to guide him in discovering the roots of his spiritual life as a child which is where the spirit of manipulation is usually birthed. The whole soul of a manipulator has to be rebirthed from the point or points where the soul learned to manipulate. The minister's rôle is to assist in this rebirthing. His job is to help the inner child of the manipulator to forgive his parents, and to be a channel of love to feed the manipulator's starvation. He must become a spiritual mother or father for that starving soul. Like Paul, the minister must be a patriarch or matriarch:
"You are witnesses, and Elohim (God) also, how devoutly and justly and blamelessly we behaved ourselves among you who believe; as you know how we exhorted, and comforted, and charged every one of you, as a father does his own children, that you would walk worthy of Elohim (God) who calls you into His own kingdom and glory" (1 Thess.2:10-12, NKJV).
There is no way, however, that a manipulator can be delivered if he does not first make a determined, resolute stand to choose life. He must adamantly refuse to bury his talent, he must refuse to flee from the risks of life, and he must refuse to manipulate others.
Now the talent-burying manipulators, more than all the others, have developed huge reward systems behind their sin. They have learned how to make others jump to their tune. To one who feels empty of power because he has forfeited his own life in fear, such power feels good! He wants to feel powerful. How often I have seen physically small people rule others with a rod of iron. It feels good to that weak, little old grandmother to make those great, big, powerful sons reel and jump. And sin, as we all know, feels 'good' to the fleshy, carnal nature, but people wouldn't keep it if it didn't give them a kick, however painful. What the manipulators don't realise is that the ones they control usually end up hating them and doing all they can to avoid them, the very opposite of what they deep-down want. Theirs is a learned system of control but it's the only one they know.
What is the solution to a manipulator's problem? Quite simply - and brutally simply I might add - the answer is hate. Not themselves, or anyone else, but the sin of manipulation itself. They must come to loathe it as fully as the Israelites finally loathed their captivity and were prepared to do something about it. It might not be easy but it is the only way. Indeed I will say this is true of all types of sin, and not just the sin of manipulation. We must do as Paul said:
"Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good" (Rom 12:9, NKJV).
Abhor evil. Hate it. Loathe it. Be disgusted by it. Because that is the only way we will finally be quit of it in our lives. We must see what harm it does to others, and we must hate hurting those we try to love through manipulation. We must detest manipulation with a ferocious passion. This is what the Scriptures witness time and time again. Hear what King David said:
"0 You who love Yahweh, hate evil!" (Ps.97:10, NKJV).
"The fear of Yahweh is to hate evil; pride and arrogance and the evil way and the perverse mouth I hate" (Prov.8:13, NKJV).
Yahweh said through Amos:
"Hate evil, love good; establish justice in the gate" (Amos 5:15, NKJV).
I'll be blunt with you - I have a vitriolic hatred for evil but my love for people prevents me from hating them, even though I freely admit the temptation is sometimes very strong. I loathe manipulation with a passion because I see how it reduces those who are manipulated into disheveled shadows of themselves as the Israelites were, and we were not born to be slaves of anyone.
The only way a manipulator can get free is by their own ferocious hatred of their putrid habit of manipulation - not themselves but the habit. For in so hating the habit, they love themselves and others. They fulfill the Second Golden Rule to love your neighbour as you love yourself because they have first loved Yahweh-Elohim with their whole mind, might and strength. The manipulator must hate the sin of manipulation so much that he will not turn away from the grizzly sight of nailing to the Cross until the deed is done and it is dead. They must hate it like a death-healing cancer or they won't choose to give up the rewards of power that come through manipulation long enough to get rid of it.
Not all deliverance is easy. It is far more than calling on the Name of Yah'shua (Jesus) in a passive state and expecting Him to wave a magical wand. The power to heal is in Him to be sure but first you must loathe the sin as much as you love Him. Passionate committment means everything.
When it comes to prayers of deliverance, the manipulator must do his own praying. Resentments and the causes of flight and manipulation must be addressed. To conclude today, might I suggest a prayer long the following lines:
"Dear Heavenly Father, Yahweh-Elohim, in the Name of Yah'shua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) and by the power of His blood, I choose to be here at this moment of time. I choose to be spiritually naked, without devices to cloak me, and I choose to trust You and to be open to life. Reveal the full truth of my condition to me by whatever means You choose by flooding me with the Light of Christ.
"I renounce and reject all these ways of controlling people. Lord, I am sorry for it. I cast it away from me and nail it to the Cross. Haul me up short, Father, every time I fall back into it. I hate it, I loathe it, I despise it. Get me out of it, Father. If I don't hate this sin enough, create in me a perfect hatred for the sin which makes me a destroyer of my friends and loved ones. Amen."
Click here for Part 6
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