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Wrath of God in the Bible: Scary Gift of Love

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Wrath of God in the Bible: Scary Gift of Love
The Wrath of God is larger than time, a consuming fire, and abides on all who reject the Son. Only one Escape – the cross of Jesus Christ.

Wrath of God in the Bible: Scary Gift of Love:

whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them. – Jesus* in John 3:26

* following a name means that person is included in my book SPIRITUAL LIVES.

Wrath of God in the Bible

The 3-word phrase appears only 10 times in the King James Bible, 5 in Revelation depicting terrifying images John saw of end times.

Its only use in the Old Testament is in the Psalms, describing God’s judgment on the children of Israel in the wilderness for their disobedience and Idolatry.

These are self-contained events, within the borders of a specific timeframe.

Jesus says God’s wrath is larger than time and remains on people who reject the Son. The $64 question is when and how did it get there?

Definition of Wrath

wrath noun

1: strong vengeful anger or indignation

2: retributory punishment for an offense or a crime: divine chastisement

The birth of the Wrath of God

The first 2 chapters of Genesis tell us the creation story. God created us “good” in every way. God uses this word 7 times in the first chapter of the Bible to describe everything He has created.

When He created man and woman as His masterpiece, He pronounced His work finished and stamped it as “very good.”

What happened? An enemy came, more malevolent than cancer, determined to poison with hate the people God created in love and in His image. Through trickery, this enemy got Adam* and Eve* to disobey God’s word.

He knew firsthand that God’s holiness and love would not allow sin in His presence.

He also knew that God cannot lie, and He had said:

you shall not eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. For in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die. – Genesis 2:17

That is exactly what happened to our first parents. The New England Primer puts it like this:

In Adam’s Fall

We sinned all.

St. Paul* puts it like this:

Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: – Romans 5:12

The Apostle expresses our dire position as a reflection of Jesus’ statement that God’s wrath remains on those who do not believe:

Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. – Ephesians 2:3

By nature, and without Christ we were “strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.” – 2:12

This is not a popular doctrine, and the Jews of Jesus’ day felt that 18 people killed when a building fell on them were somehow worse offenders than they were.

Jesus set them straight:

do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem?

No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. – Luke 13:4-5

Natural, physical death is a part of the wrath of God, but that is only one step:

it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: – Hebrews 9:27

Jesus describes this judgment and pleads with us to avoid it at all costs:

And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out: it is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire:

Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. – Mark 9:47-48

The wrath of God is a fearful thing and is meant to be so:

And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear Him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. – Matthew 10:28

It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. – Hebrews 10:31

Love in the Wrath of God

The devil knew God’s holiness, righteous judgment, and abhorrence of sin and plotted our destruction cleverly.

But what the devil did not know or see was God’s love for them (and us).

He did not foresee God’s promise of deliverance for their children nor the ongoing warfare the Fall would create:

And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He will bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel. Genesis 3:15

Before God expelled them from paradise and placed an angel with a sword to prevent their re-entry, He demonstrated His love and kindness for them, sinners, though they were:

And the LORD God made for Adam and for his wife garments of skins and clothed them. Genesis 3:21

Frightening as the Wrath of God is, it is the means to salvation and an expression of His love for us.

Jesus explained it like this:

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in h

Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved. – John 3:16-17

Jesus came to save us from the wrath of God

An angel told St. Joseph the Carpenter, thou shalt call his name JESUS: for He shall save his people from their sins. – Matthew 1:21

Jesus began His ministry with these words: The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye and believe the gospel. Mark 1:15

He ministered for three years before dying on the cross for us, an act of love from the Gift of the Father. This is God’s love displayed in His wrath.

But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. – Romans 5:8-9

And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. – 1 John 2:2

The Wrath of God has been a core doctrine of Christianity for 2,000 years. It has been an impetus to many revivals and motivation to hundreds of missionaries to carry the Gospel around the world. Hundreds of millions have escaped God’s wrath and come to Jesus for everlasting life.

Modern liberalism challenges the wrath of God:

A God without wrath brought men without sin into a kingdom without judgment through the ministrations of a Christ without a cross. H. Richard Niebuhr (1894-1962)

Stripped of this Biblical truth, another Gospel is being preached. God Himself is being redefined from the 21st century’s perspective. He is a tolerant, accepting, and above all “Loving” God who forgives without repentance and judges no one.

Of course, this is not the God of the Bible, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and He is greater far than the “consumer-friendly” fantasy.

His love is so great that it is shown in His wrath, a gift of His love, our release from sin and judgment, paid for by the precious blood of Jesus on the cross of Calvary. Praise God!

Jon Hus Hymn on the Wrath of God

Sing with me this beautiful hymn from martyr Jon Hus* (1369-1415) or listen here:

To avert from men God’s wrath,

Jesus suffered in our stead;

by an ignominious death

He a full atonement made;

and by His most precious blood

brought us, sinners, nigh to God.

2 Christ bids each afflicted soul,

“Come that I may soothe your grief.

No one who is strong and whole

needs a doctor for relief;

therefore have no fear, draw nigh,

that your want I may supply.”

3 But examine first your case,

whether you be in the faith;

do you long for pard’ning grace?

Is your only hope His death?

Then, how e’er your soul’s oppressed,

come, you are a worthy guest.

4 They who Jesus’ mercy knows

are from wrath and envy freed;

love unto our neighbor shows

that we are His flock indeed;

thus we may in all our ways

show forth our Redeemer’s praise.

Hus, Jan 1369? -1415

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