So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.
Anger hidden within your heart is unacceptable. As one man’s hidden sin affected the whole of Israel (Joshua 7), so also your anger will spill over into the lives of those closest to you. You cannot store jealousy and hatred on the inside while offering praise and prayers on the outside. John 4:24 reminds us that, “God is spirit, and we must worship Him in spirit and in truth.”
Do not push this commandment aside, assuming that it was written for that angry person you know. It was written for you. The matter is of such importance that Jesus instructed His Jewish audience to interrupt their prayers at the altar if they were convicted of any disputes, jealousy, or anger against another brother or sister.
You and I are not required to approach a physical altar before offering our prayers of confession to the Lord. With the resurrection of Jesus, we have been given direct access to our Father in heaven. This means that we may offer our prayers in bed, at school, or in joint worship at church. The Jews were required to reconcile their differences before coming to the physical altar. You and I are required to be at peace with all men (Romans 12:13) at all times. Doing this ensures that you are a living sacrifice, pleasing and acceptable to the Lord (Romans 12:1).
Do you find it difficult to worship the Lord or to spend time in prayer? It may be a sign of hidden anger against another believer. I pray that you would heed the Spirit’s conviction and seek forgiveness or understanding. In doing so, you will free yourself to worship God is spirit and truth.