Old Testament

Readings from the Old Testament / Hebrew Scriptures

God provided safe havens for people who might be harmed by the anger of other people.

Then the LORD told Joshua to say to the people of Israel, “Choose the cities of refuge that I had Moses tell you about. If any of you accidentally kills someone, you can go there and escape the one who is looking for revenge. You can run away to one of these cities, go to the place of judgment at the entrance to the city, and explain to the leaders what happened. Then they will let you into the city and give you a place to live in, so that you can stay there. If the one looking for revenge follows you there, the people of the city must not hand you over to that one. They must protect you because you killed the person accidentally and not out of anger. You may stay in the city until you have received a public trial and until the death of the man who is then the High Priest. Then you may go back home to your own town, from which you had run away.”
Joshua 20.1-6

Harboring anger is destructive to us.

Can’t people like you ever be quiet?
If you stopped to listen, we could talk to you.
What makes you think we are as stupid as cattle?
You are only hurting yourself with your anger.
Will the earth be deserted because you are angry?
Will God move mountains to satisfy you?
Job 18.1-4

It is true that God gets righteously angry but does not hold on to this anger forever.

Sing praise to the LORD, all his faithful people!
Remember what the Holy One has done, and give him thanks!
His anger lasts only a moment, his goodness for a lifetime.
Tears may flow in the night, but joy comes in the morning.
Psalm 30.4,5

A gentle and kind spirit can calm an angry and cruel spirit.

A gentle answer quiets anger, but a harsh one stirs it up.
Kind words bring life, but cruel words crush your spirit.
Proverbs 15.1,4

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