The Reality of God’s Wrath

There is a segment of the Christian church that will tell you that the wrathful God of the Old Testament somehow changed over time, and now that we are not under law but under grace, God is no longer a God of wrath, and is no longer angry at us humans. At this point I could get into a lengthy dissertation concerning the immutability (unchanging nature) of God, but I lest I generate a snooze fest, I will merely present a few passages of scripture that should settle the issue.

I post these passages for information purposes only, because the text is clear. There is no way out other than redefining terms or taking other passages of scripture out of their natural context and using them to assert God is now just all about love and some sort of cosmic sugar daddy who just wants to give us stuff and help us feel good about ourselves.

I dedicate this post to ‘Bones’ who tried to begin a lengthy debate to ‘prove’ that God is no longer a God of wrath, using passages of scripture taken out of context and very familiar to the folks who maintain what I call the gospel according to the ‘Beatles’. If you don’t get it, don’t worry about it.

First, here is a passage from Romans, Chapter 1 (written by the Apostle Paul) specifically concerning the wrath of God, that is part of an entire small section devoted to the wrath of God.

18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. – Rom 1:18

That passage was dealt with in some detail in this post. For the moment note the ‘present tense’ phrase – is revealed’. The 20+ Bible versions, half dozen commentaries, and Greek lexicon(s) that I consulted all agree with the present tense. That alone could/should settle the issue, but apparently it doesn’t.

The next passage is from Ephesians, Chapter 2 and presents the natural condition of all of us mortals:

2 As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. – Eph 2:2-3

Either everyone born into this world is ‘by nature’ deserving of God’s wrath, or at some point in time things changed and all of a sudden everyone was born innocent and deserving of heaven when they exited the bitch canal.

The final two passages are from the Gospel of John, Chapter 3:

18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. – v. 18

36 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them. – v. 36

Note the ‘universality’ of both of those passages. All who believe in the Son are not now, nor will they be ‘condemned’, but all those who do not believe are ‘condemned already’ and living under of God’s ‘abiding’ wrath. They didn’t suddenly come under God’s wrath for consciously rejecting Christ, they are already under God’s wrath for their unbelief, and God’s wrath will remain on them as long as they remain in a state of unbelief.

I’m sure that some who read this will want to try all manner of argumentation to explain away God’s wrath, but please don’t try it here, unless you want to attempt to explain how the passages of scripture don’t mean what they clearly say. I will NOT engage in useless arguments over whose ‘opinion’ is right and whose is wrong. And if you want to try and say that passages about God’s love somehow ‘trump’ passages about his wrath, don’t even bother. Passages about God’s love as well as his wrath both mean what they say.

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