Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Reconciling Wrath and Love

I've been reviewing my notes in preparation for an exam I need to take for a class I did last week. One of the things that our professor, Rod Whitacre said has really caused me to sit up and take notice. He was talking about the works of the apostle John who really focused on the love of God in the incarnation of Jesus. Touching on the wrath of God and how it relates to God's love (which many people continue to have difficulty reconciling), he said that “God’s wrath is His love exercised towards that which corrupts and destroys those whom He loves.”

What this essentially means is that the wrath of God is not something like the manifestation of a two-faced caricature that flips his personality in an arbitrary manner. Or worse still, a progression of development from the Old Testament God to the New Testament one. It is really all linked to the fact that “God is love.” What changed was the coming of Christ. As John said, “the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” (Jn 1:14)

So where does that leave us? What Rod said was this: “When we hold onto our sin (i.e. by not repenting), we are holding onto to something that experiences his wrath (and is targeted for destruction).” Generally not a good idea!

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