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Ruminating on ROMANS! (Some Thoughts on Paul’s Great Epistle) #51 “Critical Imperatives for the Christ-Follower” (A Study of Romans 12) Part 23

Many of you know that my New Jersey friend Frank and I are reading through God’s Word together (described here). We’re now in the book of Romans and have been reading chapter 12 during the last while.I count 24 injunctions or commands or imperatives for the believer here in Romans 12. I’m aware that the expression “critical imperative” is redundant, but I think it’s useful for what we see here in this great chapter.

We’ve seen that the believer is to offer his body as a living sacrifice, not to conform to the pattern of this world, to be transformed by the renewing of his mind, to think of himself with sober judgment, to use his gifts to build up the body of Christ, to hate as God hates, to be devoted to the body in love, to honor one another beyond yourselves, to keep one’s spiritual fervor, to be joyful in hope, to be patient in affliction, to be faithful in prayer, to share with the Lord’s people who are in need, to practice hospitality, to bless those who persecute them, to use our emotions for the Lord and for each other, to live in harmony with one another, to reach out to others regardless of their status, to not repay evil with evil, to do right before everyone, to live at peace with everyone when possible, and not to take revenge but leave room for God’s wrath!

Let’s continue our multipart study by looking at verse 20.

The twenty-third critical imperative is straightforward —

23. Believers are TO CARE FOR THE NEEDS OF THEIR ENEMIES! (v. 20)

“Am I a soldier of the cross?”, we used to sing in Sunday School when I was young and the last of the dinosaurs were becoming extinct. Soldiers have enemies. The fact that I can’t name one single enemy is disturbing to me.

Why? Because the gospel of Christ divides people into those who believe it and those who oppose it. And if I’m doing a good job of sharing and living the gospel before others, I should probably be making some enemies along the way.

But let’s assume I’ve got an enemy or two. How should I treat that person? Enemies should be executed — or at least imprisoned, right?

In his book of poetry entitled You! Jonah! Thomas Carlisle records Jonah saying, “I hate God’s enemies with a perfect hatred! Why can’t God do as much?” But today’s critical imperative tells us that we should feed our hungry enemies and give them something to drink when they are thirsty! What?

Ah. Here’s the conclusion: “In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” Great! That’s exactly what I want to do! But have I understood that verse correctly?

The description of “heaping burning coals” is a reference to Proverbs 25:21–22.

21If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat;
And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;

22For you will heap burning coals on his head,
And the LORD will reward you.

[The following is from several commentators. Please forgive the long sentences.] “In Egypt, there had been a custom to carry a pan of burning coals on one’s head as a sign of repentance. Kindness and forgiveness to those who abuse us, ideally, will make them ashamed of themselves, and hopefully bring them to repent. The strongest, most powerful response to persecution and hatred is to love your enemies. Not to do him hurt, not to aggravate his condemnation, as if this would be a means of bringing down the wrath of God the more fiercely on him, which is a sense given by some; as if this would be an inducement to the saints to do such acts of kindness; which is just the reverse of the spirit and temper of mind the apostle is here cultivating; but rather the sense is, that by so doing, his conscience would be stung with a sense of former injuries done to his benefactor, and he be filled with shame on account of them, and be brought to repentance for them, and to love the person he before hated, and be careful of doing him any wrong for the future; all which may be considered as a prevailing motive to God’s people to act the generous part they are here moved to.”

It must refer to the burning pain of shame and remorse which the man feels whose hostility is repaid by love. This is the only kind of vengeance the Christian is at liberty to contemplate.

We need desperately to shun the example of Jonah and love our enemies as the Lord Jesus taught us. Carlisle caught Jonah’s sentiment exactly when he wrote:

And Jonah stalked
to his shaded seat
and waited for God
to come around
to his way of thinking.

And God is still waiting for a host of Jonahs
in their comfortable houses
to come around
to His way of loving.

Today’s Challenge: Got any enemies? You might be surprised. Look for an opportunity to show kindness to him or her so that they will repent and come to the Lord!

 

 
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Posted by on March 21, 2021 in Romans 12

 

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Ruminating on ROMANS! (Some Thoughts on Paul’s Great Epistle) #50 “Critical Imperatives for the Christ-Follower” (A Study of Romans 12) Part 22

Many of you know that my New Jersey friend Frank and I are reading through God’s Word together (described here). We’re now in the book of Romans and have been reading chapter 12 during the last while.I count 24 injunctions or commands or imperatives for the believer here in Romans 12. I’m aware that the expression “critical imperative” is redundant, but I think it’s useful for what we see here in this great chapter.

We’ve seen that the believer is to offer his body as a living sacrifice, not to conform to the pattern of this world, to be transformed by the renewing of his mind, to think of himself with sober judgment, to use his gifts to build up the body of Christ, to hate as God hates, to be devoted to the body in love, to honor one another beyond yourselves, to keep one’s spiritual fervor, to be joyful in hope, to be patient in affliction, to be faithful in prayer, to share with the Lord’s people who are in need, to practice hospitality, to bless those who persecute them, to use our emotions for the Lord and for each other, to live in harmony with one another, to reach out to others regardless of their status, to not repay evil with evil, to do right before everyone, and to live at peace with everyone when possible!!

Let’s continue our multipart study by looking at verse 19.

The twenty-second critical imperative is straightforward —

22. Believers are NOT TO TAKE REVENGE BUT TO LEAVE ROOM FOR GOD’S WRATH! (v. 19)

We learned in critical imperative #19 that we are not to repay evil for evil. There may be occasions where revenge seems (and may well be) right, but we are not to substitute human revenge for the wrath of God.

Our culture would prefer not to think about the WRATH of God. But preachers like Jonathan Edwards reminded his contemporaries of this critical — and biblical — aspect of God when he preached his famous “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.”

I wrote an article on God’s wrath a few years ago entitled “Warning a Wrath-Deserving World: Evangelicals and the Overhaul of Hell.” If interested, it can be accessed here.

There are many biblical texts on God’s wrath (I touch on most of them in the article referred to above). Vigilante justice is a very engaging and attractive movie plot these days, but hardly the kind of response God expects from His children! Righteous people don’t respond with revenge. All judgment is not finished on this earth. There will be a final judgment of God! And we are to wait for it!

Today’s Challenge: You might think to yourself, “There’s no way I would plot revenge against anybody for anything.” Great! But what if someone hurt you or your family? God’s judgment may be delayed, but we are not to preempt His righteousness no matter how just we may feel.

 

 
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Posted by on March 19, 2021 in Romans 12

 

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Ruminating on ROMANS! (Some Thoughts on Paul’s Great Epistle) #24 “What If . . . ?” (A Study of Romans 9)

Many of you know that my New Jersey friend Frank and I are reading through God’s Word together (described here). We’re now in the book of Romans and are reading chapter 9 each day this week.

What a fascinating section! We have two categories of people here: (1) “the objects of his wrath” and (2) “the objects of his mercy.” And we have two “What if” questions. As I understand this passage, God “bore with great patience” the objects of His wrath. For what purpose? To “show His wrath and make His power known.”

There seems to be a second reason for God’s response to those “objects of His wrath.” He did this “to make the riches of His glory known to the objects of His mercy”! What a contrast!

In that second category belongs every born-again believer in Christ, the ones “whom He also called.” And one’s ethnicity is irrelevant — note: “not only from the Jews but also from the Gentiles.” We have been “prepared in advance for glory”!

What’s one takeaway from this text . . . for you?

 
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Posted by on January 22, 2021 in Romans 9

 

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Ruminating on ROMANS! (Some Thoughts on Paul’s Great Epistle) #6 The Final Judgment of God (Romans 2:7-11)

Many of you know that my New Jersey friend Frank and I are reading through God’s Word together (described here). We’re now in the book of Romans and are reading chapter 2 each day this week. Here is something that I noticed in reading this chapter:

Please notice that the two sets of parentheses are supplied by me. When I work on a passage, I try to see the structure and this paragraph divides nicely into two categories. I’ve also put this in chart form:

This is a fascinating text! If I’m understanding the passage correctly, this is a description of God’s final judgment on all people, Jew and Gentile. And there will be — and are presently — two and only two categories of human beings: (1) those who persist in doing good, and (2) those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil.

What are some observations you would add to this brief look at Romans 2:7-11? Feel free to leave a comment below.

 

 
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Posted by on December 9, 2020 in Romans 2

 

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Ruminating on ROMANS! (Some Thoughts on Paul’s Great Epistle) #4 THE WRATH OF GOD!(Romans 1:18-20)

Many of you know that my New Jersey friend Frank and I are reading through God’s Word together (described here). We’re now in the book of Romans and are reading chapter 1 each day this week. Here is something that I noticed in reading this chapter:A few observations on the WRATH of God in this passage —

I. Is being revealed . . .

II. Is against all the godlessness and wickedness of people . . .

III. These people are those who suppress the truth by their wickedness . . .

IV. The clarity of God and His character (vv. 19-20)

V. Creation testifies to God’s eternal power and divine nature (v. 20)

VI. People are without excuse (v. 20)

There is much in the Scriptures about the WRATH of God. In fact, I wrote an article a few years ago entitled “Warning a Wrath-Deserving World” and it may be accessed here.

Could it be that some in our culture need to hear more about the WRATH of God? I’ve had a person yawn in my face when I told him of God’s love. But when I talked about God’s WRATH — and how I deserved that wrath — he didn’t yawn. He listened. Just a thought.

 

 
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Posted by on December 3, 2020 in Romans 1

 

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Getting to Know . . . I Samuel! (chapter 11) Holy Anger!

This has got to be a difficult text for my Mennonite (= pacifist) friends! The Ammonites want to gouge out the right eyes of all the Gileadites. That is their condition for making a treaty with them.

The Israelites weep outloud when they hear of this impending disaster. Saul, returning from the fields, asks what’s wrong and is overcome with the Spirit of God and “he burned with anger” (v. 6). Against whom does Saul vent his anger? Against the people of God!

“I wonder how Saul will use us today?”

He cuts up the oxen and sends the pieces by messengers throughout Israel, threatening, “This is what will be done to the oxen of anyone who does not follow Saul and Samuel” (v. 7). We read that the terror of the Lord falls on the people and “they came out together as one.”

As a result Saul mustered 300,000 men of Israel and 30,000 men of Judah. News of impending rescue is sent to the men of Jabesh Gilead who promise to surrender to the Ammonites the next day (v. 10).

Saul’s army breaks into the Ammonite camp late at night and slaughters them “until the heat of the day.” We read that “those who survived were scattered, so that no two of them were left together” (v. 11).

But some of the people then want to execute those who had rejected Saul’s rulership. Saul, in a great act of mercy, intercedes for them and says, “No one will be put to death today, for this day the Lord has rescued Israel” (v. 13).

Saul is made king in the presence of the Lord and there is a great celebration!

The takeaways from this chapter?

(1) There are real threats to the people of God. And there is a time for real leaders to step up and fight!

(2) God’s Word does not sugarcoat man’s inhumanity to man or the necessity (at times) to execute those who do evil.

(3) A holy anger can unite the people of God to do what is right!

(4) There is always room for mercy to be shown to others (those who opposed Saul’s kingship).

 
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Posted by on November 21, 2018 in I Samuel 11

 

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Back to the Basics: Theology Proper #16 God’s RIGHTEOUS WRATH! (Part 2)

In our previous post we began thinking a bit about God’s WRATH.  We don’t want to think about God’s wrath.  We would prefer a god who does not become wrathful, vengeful, furious with us sinners.  But that’s not the God of the Bible.

We listed many verses in Part 1, but only summarized through Proverbs 11:23 that says that “the hope of the wicked [ends] only in wrath.”  Let’s look at the 2nd section of those verses one more time in this second of two parts on God’s wrath.  Here are those verses again:

Isaiah 1:24
Therefore the Lord, the Lord Almighty, the Mighty One of Israel, declares: “Ah! I will vent my wrath on my foes and avenge myself on my enemies.
Isaiah 10:5
[ God’s Judgment on Assyria ] “Woe to the Assyrian, the rod of my anger, in whose hand is the club of my wrath!
Isaiah 13:5
They come from faraway lands, from the ends of the heavens— the Lord and the weapons of his wrath— to destroy the whole country.
Isaiah 48:9
For my own name’s sake I delay my wrath; for the sake of my praise I hold it back from you, so as not to destroy you completely.
Isaiah 59:18
According to what they have done, so will he repay wrath to his enemies and retribution to his foes; he will repay the islands their due.
Jeremiah 7:20
“‘Therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord says: My anger and my wrath will be poured out on this place—on man and beast, on the trees of the field and on the crops of your land—and it will burn and not be quenched.
Jeremiah 7:29
“‘Cut off your hair and throw it away; take up a lament on the barren heights, for the Lord has rejected and abandoned this generation that is under his wrath.
Jeremiah 10:10
But the Lord is the true God; he is the living God, the eternal King. When he is angry, the earth trembles; the nations cannot endure his wrath.
Jeremiah 21:5
I myself will fight against you with an outstretched hand and a mighty arm in furious anger and in great wrath.
Jeremiah 25:15
[ The Cup of God’s Wrath ] This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, said to me: “Take from my hand this cup filled with the wine of my wrath and make all the nations to whom I send you drink it.
Jeremiah 36:7
Perhaps they will bring their petition before the Lord and will each turn from their wicked ways, for the anger and wrath pronounced against this people by the Lord are great.”
Jeremiah 50:25
The Lord has opened his arsenal and brought out the weapons of his wrath, for the Sovereign Lord Almighty has work to do in the land of the Babylonians.
Lamentations 4:11
The Lord has given full vent to his wrath; he has poured out his fierce anger. He kindled a fire in Zion that consumed her foundations.
Ezekiel 5:13
“Then my anger will cease and my wrath against them will subside, and I will be avenged. And when I have spent my wrath on them, they will know that I the Lord have spoken in my zeal.
Ezekiel 13:13
“‘Therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord says: In my wrath I will unleash a violent wind, and in my anger hailstones and torrents of rain will fall with destructive fury.
Ezekiel 16:38
I will sentence you to the punishment of women who commit adultery and who shed blood; I will bring on you the blood vengeance of my wrath and jealous anger.
Ezekiel 20:21
“‘But the children rebelled against me: They did not follow my decrees, they were not careful to keep my laws, of which I said, “The person who obeys them will live by them,” and they desecrated my Sabbaths. So I said I would pour out my wrath on them and spend my anger against them in the wilderness.
Ezekiel 21:31
I will pour out my wrath on you and breathe out my fiery anger against you; I will deliver you into the hands of brutal men, men skilled in destruction.
Ezekiel 22:22
As silver is melted in a furnace, so you will be melted inside her, and you will know that I the Lord have poured out my wrath on you.’”
Ezekiel 25:17
I will carry out great vengeance on them and punish them in my wrath. Then they will know that I am the Lord, when I take vengeance on them.’”
Daniel 9:16
Lord, in keeping with all your righteous acts, turn away your anger and your wrath from Jerusalem, your city, your holy hill. Our sins and the iniquities of our ancestors have made Jerusalem and your people an object of scorn to all those around us.
Hosea 5:10
Judah’s leaders are like those who move boundary stones. I will pour out my wrath on them like a flood of water.
Hosea 13:11
So in my anger I gave you a king, and in my wrath I took him away.
Nahum 1:2
[ The Lord’s Anger Against Nineveh ] The Lord is a jealous and avenging God; the Lord takes vengeance and is filled with wrath. The Lord takes vengeance on his foes and vents his wrath against his enemies.
Nahum 1:6
Who can withstand his indignation? Who can endure his fierce anger? His wrath is poured out like fire; the rocks are shattered before him.
Habakkuk 3:2
Lord, I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, Lord. Repeat them in our day, in our time make them known; in wrath remember mercy.
Zephaniah 1:15
That day will be a day of wrath— a day of distress and anguish, a day of trouble and ruin, a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and blackness—
Zephaniah 1:18
Neither their silver nor their gold will be able to save them on the day of the Lord’s wrath.” In the fire of his jealousy the whole earth will be consumed, for he will make a sudden end of all who live on the earth.
Malachi 1:4
Edom may say, “Though we have been crushed, we will rebuild the ruins.” But this is what the Lord Almighty says: “They may build, but I will demolish. They will be called the Wicked Land, a people always under the wrath of the Lord.
Matthew 3:7
But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to where he was baptizing, he said to them: “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath?
Luke 21:23
How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! There will be great distress in the land and wrath against this people.
John 3:36
Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them.
Romans 1:18
[ God’s Wrath Against Sinful Humanity ] The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness,
Romans 2:5
But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed.
Romans 2:8
But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger.
Romans 9:22
What if God, although choosing to show his wrath and make his power known, bore with great patience the objects of his wrath—prepared for destruction?
Romans 12:19
Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.
Romans 13:4
For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer.
Ephesians 2:3
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.
Ephesians 5:6
Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient.
Colossians 3:6
Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.
1 Thessalonians 1:10
and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead—Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath.
1 Thessalonians 5:9
For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Revelation 6:16
They called to the mountains and the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb!
Revelation 6:17
For the great day of their wrath has come, and who can withstand it?”
Revelation 11:18
The nations were angry, and your wrath has come. The time has come for judging the dead, and for rewarding your servants the prophets and your people who revere your name, both great and small— and for destroying those who destroy the earth.”
Revelation 14:10
they, too, will drink the wine of God’s fury, which has been poured full strength into the cup of his wrath. They will be tormented with burning sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and of the Lamb.

In concluding this study, we see that —
His anger is described as the blood vengeance of His wrath and jealous anger, the fire of His jealousy.

From these verses we learn that God will vent His wrath and avenge Himself on His enemies. He will repay wrath to His enemies. God used Assyria as the club, the weapons, of His wrath. God takes vengeance and is filled with wrath.

His wrath and anger will be poured out, will burn and not be quenched. We read of a generation that is under His wrath. We learn that nations cannot endure His wrath. He has given full vent to His wrath and poured out His fierce anger. God threatens to pour out His wrath and spend His anger on His people. He will breathe out His fiery anger. He will punish them in His wrath. His wrath is poured out like fire.

There will come a time when His anger will cease and His wrath against His people will subside (after He has spent His wrath on them).

About His own people God says He will fight against them in furious anger and in great wrath. His cup is filled with the wine of His wrath. God looks for repentance, for the anger and wrath pronounced against this people by the Lord are great. In His anger God gave them a king and in His wrath He took him away.

God will even unleash the elements of weather (violent wind, hailstones, torrents of rain) against His people. We read of a day of wrath.

The good news is that God’s wrath may be delayed. We can pray that He will turn away from His anger and His wrath. We can ask that He will in wrath remember mercy. We can warn others to flee from the coming wrath.

The hard truth is that those who have not believed on the Son, those who reject the Son, God’s wrath remains on them.

The reality is that we have to leave room for God’s wrath. It is clearly taught in the Word of God (one wonders if there are more verses on God’s wrath than on His love?). And we need to warn people with the gospel to FLEE God’s wrath.

Thank God today for the Son of God who rescues us from the coming wrath!

 
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Posted by on April 2, 2018 in doctrine of God

 

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Back to the Basics: Theology Proper #16 God’s RIGHTEOUS WRATH! (Part 1)

Jonathan Edwards preached his famous sermon “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” way back in the 1700’s as a visiting preacher.  Historians tell us that he emphasized God’s wrath to such a degree that the members of the congregation were clinging to their wooden pews in the fear that they would fall into hell then and there.  It may be that your high school English teacher messed up your reading of Edwards’ sermon.  If so, you may read it here.

Modern man, it is said, has turned his sermon into “God in the Hands of Angry Sinners!”  “God needs to explain Himself — and all the evil in His world!”, they say.  We have lost a sense of God’s anger at sin.

What does the Bible say about the WRATH of God?  Here are (more than) a few verses to keep in mind:

Psalm 7:11-  God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry with the wicked every day. (KJV). The NIV says “God is a righteous judge, a God who displays his wrath every day.”

Num. 16:46- “. . . Wrath has come out from the Lord; the plague has started.”

Debt. 9:8- “At Horeb you aroused the Lord’s wrath so that He was angry enough to destroy you.”

Deuteronomy 29:20
The Lord will never be willing to forgive them; his wrath and zeal will burn against them. All the curses written in this book will fall on them, and the Lord will blot out their names from under heaven.

Deuteronomy 29:28
In furious anger and in great wrath the Lord uprooted them from their land and thrust them into another land, as it is now.”

Deuteronomy 32:22
For a fire will be kindled by my wrath, one that burns down to the realm of the dead below. It will devour the earth and its harvests and set afire the foundations of the mountains.

Joshua 22:20
When Achan son of Zerah was unfaithful in regard to the devoted things, did not wrath come on the whole community of Israel? He was not the only one who died for his sin.’”

1 Samuel 28:18
Because you did not obey the Lord or carry out his fierce wrath against the Amalekites, the Lord has done this to you today.

2 Samuel 6:8
Then David was angry because the Lord’s wrath had broken out against Uzzah, and to this day that place is called Perez Uzzah.

2 Chronicles 19:2
Jehu the seer, the son of Hanani, went out to meet him and said to the king, “Should you help the wicked and love those who hate the Lord? Because of this, the wrath of the Lord is on you.

2 Chronicles 32:25
But Hezekiah’s heart was proud and he did not respond to the kindness shown him; therefore the Lord’s wrath was on him and on Judah and Jerusalem.

2 Chronicles 36:16
But they mocked God’s messengers, despised his words and scoffed at his prophets until the wrath of the Lord was aroused against his people and there was no remedy.

Job 21:20
Let their own eyes see their destruction; let them drink the cup of the wrath of the Almighty.

Psalm 2:5
He rebukes them in his anger and terrifies them in his wrath,

Psalm 2:12
Kiss his son, or he will be angry and your way will lead to your destruction, for his wrath can flare up in a moment. Blessed are all who take refuge in him.

Psalm 21:9
When you appear for battle, you will burn them up as in a blazing furnace. The Lord will swallow them up in his wrath, and his fire will consume them.

Psalm 38:3
Because of your wrath there is no health in my body; there is no soundness in my bones because of my sin.

Psalm 76:10
Surely your wrath against mankind brings you praise, and the survivors of your wrath are restrained.

Psalm 78:38
Yet he was merciful; he forgave their iniquities and did not destroy them. Time after time he restrained his anger and did not stir up his full wrath.

Psalm 78:49
He unleashed against them his hot anger, his wrath, indignation and hostility— a band of destroying angels.

Psalm 79:6
Pour out your wrath on the nations that do not acknowledge you, on the kingdoms that do not call on your name;

Psalm 88:16
Your wrath has swept over me; your terrors have destroyed me.

Psalm 89:46
How long, Lord? Will you hide yourself forever? How long will your wrath burn like fire?

Psalm 90:11
If only we knew the power of your anger! Your wrath is as great as the fear that is your due.

Psalm 106:23
So he said he would destroy them— had not Moses, his chosen one, stood in the breach before him to keep his wrath from destroying them.

Proverbs 11:23
The desire of the righteous ends only in good, but the hope of the wicked only in wrath.

Isaiah 1:24
Therefore the Lord, the Lord Almighty, the Mighty One of Israel, declares: “Ah! I will vent my wrath on my foes and avenge myself on my enemies.

Isaiah 10:5
[ God’s Judgment on Assyria ] “Woe to the Assyrian, the rod of my anger, in whose hand is the club of my wrath!

Isaiah 13:5
They come from faraway lands, from the ends of the heavens— the Lord and the weapons of his wrath— to destroy the whole country.

Isaiah 48:9
For my own name’s sake I delay my wrath; for the sake of my praise I hold it back from you, so as not to destroy you completely.

Isaiah 59:18
According to what they have done, so will he repay wrath to his enemies and retribution to his foes; he will repay the islands their due.

Jeremiah 7:20
“‘Therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord says: My anger and my wrath will be poured out on this place—on man and beast, on the trees of the field and on the crops of your land—and it will burn and not be quenched.

Jeremiah 7:29
“‘Cut off your hair and throw it away; take up a lament on the barren heights, for the Lord has rejected and abandoned this generation that is under his wrath.

Jeremiah 10:10
But the Lord is the true God; he is the living God, the eternal King. When he is angry, the earth trembles; the nations cannot endure his wrath.

Jeremiah 21:5
I myself will fight against you with an outstretched hand and a mighty arm in furious anger and in great wrath.

Jeremiah 25:15
[ The Cup of God’s Wrath ] This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, said to me: “Take from my hand this cup filled with the wine of my wrath and make all the nations to whom I send you drink it.

Jeremiah 36:7
Perhaps they will bring their petition before the Lord and will each turn from their wicked ways, for the anger and wrath pronounced against this people by the Lord are great.”

Jeremiah 50:25
The Lord has opened his arsenal and brought out the weapons of his wrath, for the Sovereign Lord Almighty has work to do in the land of the Babylonians.

Lamentations 4:11
The Lord has given full vent to his wrath; he has poured out his fierce anger. He kindled a fire in Zion that consumed her foundations.

Ezekiel 5:13
“Then my anger will cease and my wrath against them will subside, and I will be avenged. And when I have spent my wrath on them, they will know that I the Lord have spoken in my zeal.

Ezekiel 13:13
“‘Therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord says: In my wrath I will unleash a violent wind, and in my anger hailstones and torrents of rain will fall with destructive fury.

Ezekiel 16:38
I will sentence you to the punishment of women who commit adultery and who shed blood; I will bring on you the blood vengeance of my wrath and jealous anger.

Ezekiel 20:21
“‘But the children rebelled against me: They did not follow my decrees, they were not careful to keep my laws, of which I said, “The person who obeys them will live by them,” and they desecrated my Sabbaths. So I said I would pour out my wrath on them and spend my anger against them in the wilderness.

Ezekiel 21:31
I will pour out my wrath on you and breathe out my fiery anger against you; I will deliver you into the hands of brutal men, men skilled in destruction.

Ezekiel 22:22
As silver is melted in a furnace, so you will be melted inside her, and you will know that I the Lord have poured out my wrath on you.’”

Ezekiel 25:17
I will carry out great vengeance on them and punish them in my wrath. Then they will know that I am the Lord, when I take vengeance on them.’”

Daniel 9:16
Lord, in keeping with all your righteous acts, turn away your anger and your wrath from Jerusalem, your city, your holy hill. Our sins and the iniquities of our ancestors have made Jerusalem and your people an object of scorn to all those around us.

Hosea 5:10
Judah’s leaders are like those who move boundary stones. I will pour out my wrath on them like a flood of water.

Hosea 13:11
So in my anger I gave you a king, and in my wrath I took him away.

Nahum 1:2
[ The Lord’s Anger Against Nineveh ] The Lord is a jealous and avenging God; the Lord takes vengeance and is filled with wrath. The Lord takes vengeance on his foes and vents his wrath against his enemies.

Nahum 1:6
Who can withstand his indignation? Who can endure his fierce anger? His wrath is poured out like fire; the rocks are shattered before him.

Habakkuk 3:2
Lord, I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, Lord. Repeat them in our day, in our time make them known; in wrath remember mercy.

Zephaniah 1:15
That day will be a day of wrath— a day of distress and anguish, a day of trouble and ruin, a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and blackness—

Zephaniah 1:18
Neither their silver nor their gold will be able to save them on the day of the Lord’s wrath.” In the fire of his jealousy the whole earth will be consumed, for he will make a sudden end of all who live on the earth.

Malachi 1:4
Edom may say, “Though we have been crushed, we will rebuild the ruins.” But this is what the Lord Almighty says: “They may build, but I will demolish. They will be called the Wicked Land, a people always under the wrath of the Lord.

Matthew 3:7
But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to where he was baptizing, he said to them: “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath?

Luke 21:23
How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! There will be great distress in the land and wrath against this people.

John 3:36
Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them.

Romans 1:18
[ God’s Wrath Against Sinful Humanity ] The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness,

Romans 2:5
But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed.

Romans 2:8
But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger.

Romans 9:22
What if God, although choosing to show his wrath and make his power known, bore with great patience the objects of his wrath—prepared for destruction?

Romans 12:19
Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.

Romans 13:4
For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer.

Ephesians 2:3
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.

Ephesians 5:6
Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient.

Colossians 3:6
Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.

1 Thessalonians 1:10
and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead—Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath.

1 Thessalonians 5:9
For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Revelation 6:16
They called to the mountains and the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb!

Revelation 6:17
For the great day of their wrath has come, and who can withstand it?”

Revelation 11:18
The nations were angry, and your wrath has come. The time has come for judging the dead, and for rewarding your servants the prophets and your people who revere your name, both great and small— and for destroying those who destroy the earth.”

Revelation 14:10
they, too, will drink the wine of God’s fury, which has been poured full strength into the cup of his wrath. They will be tormented with burning sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and of the Lamb.

If you have read all the above verses, my friend, there is a special place in heaven for you. Here are a few takeaways that I see —

1. God is angry with the wicked every day.
2. God’s anger can be “aroused,” can “burn against” sinners, is described as “fierce,” can be “on” someone, can “flare up in a moment,” is described as “his hot anger, his wrath, indignation and hostility.” His wrath “burns like fire.”
3. We read of the “cup of the wrath of the Almighty.”
4. His anger and wrath ought to terrify us!
5. We read that “the Lord will swallow them up in his wrath.”
6. God’s wrath against mankind “brings [Him] praise”!
7. At times God restrains his anger and does not stir up “his full wrath.”
8. We can pray that His wrath would be poured out on nations that do not acknowledge Him.
9. His wrath is as great as the fear that is His due.
10. The hope of the wicked end only in wrath.

And those conclusions are only through the early references in Isaiah. Aren’t you glad for the Son of God who has turned away God’s wrath from you? (to be continued)

 
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Posted by on March 31, 2018 in doctrine of God

 

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Jonah: Belief Contradicted by Behavior (Part 29)

The Ninevite revival was more than dust and sackcloth.  The king proclaimed to his people: “Let everyone call urgently on God.  Let them give up their evil ways and their violence.  Who knows?  God may yet relent and with compassion turn from his fierce anger so that we will not perish.” (vv. 8-9).

I find this challenge from the Ninevite king amazing!  He calls for a city-wide repentance marked by earnest prayers (to Jonah’s God) and behavioral change.

What is truly fascinating is that the king doesn’t know that Jonah’s God will forgive!  He says, “WHO KNOWS?  God may yet relent . . ..”  This seems to indicate that Jonah never mentioned the possibility of forgiveness, perhaps because he did not want the Ninevites forgiven.

Jonah’s orthodox statement in this chapter — “Forty more days and Nineveh will be overthrown” — is what God wanted Jonah to say.  I wonder, however, if he said it with tears or with taunting?  With grief or with glee?  Judgment from a holy God is inevitable.  How does one prepare for that coming judgment?  Apparently Jonah had no interest in explaining to the Ninevites how God’s wrath could be averted.  (to be continued)

 

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on August 29, 2017 in Jonah

 

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Jonah — Belief Contradicted by Behavior! (Part 3)

As an historical person,  Jonah receives a clear, definitive call from the Lord to go on a short-term missions trip.  God’s message was straightforward:  “Go to the great city of Nineveh and preach against it, because its wickedness has come up before me.”

There is a world of difference between “preaching to” and “preaching against.”  Preaching to implies communication, perhaps discussion, maybe even rational conversation.  Preaching against suggests condemnation, judgment, delivering a verdict.  The one kind of preaching might produce friends; the other kind certainly suggests opposition.

God is thoroughly aware of man’s wickedness.  He pays attention to His creation.  He is grieved by man-made-in-His-image violating His standards.  To “preach against” Nineveh’s wickedness seems one step shy of full judgment and annihilation.  Although Jonah’s message was only a few words, the fact that God is talking to them instead of simply wiping them out suggests the possibility of escape from His holy wrath.

Where might we “preach against” our culture today?  How do we become “a friend of sinners” like Jesus was and yet communicate His wrath against man’s wickedness? (to be continued)

 
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Posted by on August 3, 2017 in Jonah

 

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