In the sermon series UNTAMED. Pastor Will is challenging us to embrace all of who God is. Our tendency is to try to “tame” Him or to make him more acceptable or culturally compatible. One aspect of our Untamed God that is often avoided or explained away is His wrath.
What is with GOD’S WRATH?
The word “wrath” reeks with a tone of uncontrolled anger & rage that ends up in senseless destruction. A common response is, “that’s not my God”. That description doesn’t seem to fit a righteous, just & loving God. And it certainly cannot be a primary or essential attribute of God’s character. And it is not–God’s wrath is always tempered with mercy (see Hosea 6.1-6 & listen to 11/15/15 Sermon on Unrelenting Love, Pastor Will).
The wrath of God has been described as the attitude of a holy & just God when confronted by sin & evil. So is God searching the earth to eradicate sin & evil? Is He looking for those who are missing the mark (sinning!) so He can unleash vengeance on them? If that is the case then our concept of God isn’t too much different than the myth of Santa Claus who knows who is naughty or nice and rewards accordingly. The point is that there is a deeper aspect to the wrath of God that must not be missed or we will miss God altogether!
Wrath wrapped in GRACE!
“He jealously desires the Spirit which He has made to dwell in us” (James 4.5).
Whatever or whoever stands in the way of His relationship with His people dares to step on the tracks of the “freight train” of His love for His people (to derail or obstruct it) steps into the wrath of God!
To understand the wrath of God is to understand the passion of God for His people. That passion is embodied in Jesus, God’s only begotten Son on the cross.
Punished for our sin.
The payment for all our sins.
“Christ died once for all — the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God” (1 Peter 3.18).
That is why the ordeal of the cross is called “The Passion”. The grace of God is that He wraps His wrath in the gift of the passion of Christ (His death on the cross for the payment for our sin, that punishment satisfies the justice of God) and makes way for us to come to God, to commune with God, and to enter the community of God –without fear, guilt or shame.
So the big question: Do we “get” the WRATH of God?
Sin separates us from God & we’ve all sinned! We stand right in the way of the freight train of His love for justice, righteousness & love. Romans 9.22 tells us that “we are therefore objects of wrath” –yet God desires that none should perish. God has put His son Jesus “on the tracks” of the wrath of God, to take the consequences of our sin, to show His love for us, and to restore us in relationship to Him.
How has the wrath & the grace of God had an impact on your life?
Could you understand the grace of God without knowing the wrath of God?
What are your thoughts?
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