The fourth step in the cure of anger must be added to these three obvious steps on the basis of all that Christ is saying. We must ask God to change our heart because only God is able to do it. 

The second step for those who wish to overcome their anger is to correct the injustice, for there is always injustice on both sides in any normal dispute. Thus, Jesus said, "Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath aught against thee: leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift" (Matt. 5:23-24). 

Do we commit murder? Oh, yes—by this definition. We lose our temper. We harbor grudges. We gossip. We kill by neglect, spite, and jealousy. In addition, there is no doubt that we would learn that we actually do worse things if only we could see our hearts as God is able to see them. It is no accident that even in our own speech, such things sometimes are termed “character assassination” or that we speak of destroying a person by words. This is literally true, and we do it. Only Jesus says that we are not to be that way as Christians.

The first of Christ's examples is based on the sixth commandment, which said, "Thou shalt not kill [meaning murder]." For years, ever since the giving of the law to Israel through Moses on Mount Sinai, this commandment had stood in the Decalogue and had been known to Israel. And for the same length of time murder had been defined by most men, including the scribes and the Pharisees, as the external act.

At the very end of the Sermon on the Mount we read that the people who heard Jesus "were astonished at his doctrine; for he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes" (Matt. 7:28-29). The statement indicates that the unprecedented authority of the Lord Jesus Christ was startling to his contemporaries. But surprising as this note of authority was, the standard that Jesus set before men was more startling still.