Gospel Gazette, Bible Articles

Vol. 1, No. 1 Page 13 January 1999

Gospel Gazette, Bible Articles

The Wrath of Christ

By Steve Miller

"Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God" (Romans 11:22). The goodness of the Godhead is demonstrated in such passages as John 3:16: "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." The severity of God can be seen in Hebrews 12:29: "For our God is a consuming fire." The wrath of God is consistent with His being:
The Divine wrath is to be regarded as the natural expression of the Divine nature, which is absolute holiness, manifesting itself against the willful, highhanded, deliberate, inexcusable sin and iniquity of mankind. God's wrath is always regarded in the Scripture as the just, proper, and natural expression of His holiness and righteousness which must always, under all circumstances, and at all costs be maintained. It is therefore a righteous indignation and compatible with the holy and righteous nature of God (Numbers 11:1-10; Deuteronomy 29:27; 2 Samuel 6:7; Isaiah 5:25; 42:25; Jeremiah 44:6; Psalm 79:6). The element of love and compassion is always closely connected with God's anger; if we rightly estimate the Divine anger we must unhesitatingly pronounce it to be but the expression and measure of that love (Jeremiah 10:24; Ezekiel 23; Amos 3:2). (The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Vol. v, p. 3113).
Jesus was given all authority by God the Father (Matthew 28:18). God the Father recognizes Jesus as the righteous judge (2 Timothy 4:1). The New Testament has many references about the wrath of Christ and the coming judgment. John the Baptist spoke of the wrath of Christ: "I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire: Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire" (Matthew 3 :11-12).  Let us briefly survey the wrath of Christ as taught in the New Testament.

Gospels

"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).

"Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels" (Matthew 25:41).

The wicked will be cast into hell "Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched" (Mark 9:48).

"Then said he to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to Come?" (Luke 3:7).

"Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation" (John 5:28-29).

"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him" (John 3:36).

Epistles

"For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness" (Romans 1:18).

"Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him" (Romans 5:9).

"For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad" (2 Corinthians 5:10).

"For which things' sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience:" (Colossians 3:6).

"And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed From heaven with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power" (2 Thessalonians 1:7-9).

"For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God" (Hebrews 10:30-3l).

Revelation

"And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name" (Revelation 14:9-11).

"And I saw the dead, small and great stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every many according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire" (Revelation 20:12-15).

Conclusion

What can we learn from these few passages about the wrath of Christ? The wrath of Jesus involves several things. We learn: l. To fear God and keep His Word. 2. God does not tolerate sin and disobedience. 3. Jesus is the righteous judge. 4. There is coming a judgment day. 5. All will be judged. 6. The lost will spend eternity in hell. 7. The saved will spend eternity in heaven. 8. Obedience to the Gospel plan of salvation is necessary to salvation. 9. Jesus is coming again. 10. Are you ready to meet Him or will the wrath of God and Christ abide?

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