Sunday, April 16, 2023

God of Love Or God Of Wrath?

By Joe Slater


    Dozens of times in both testaments Scripture affirms God’s love. The same is true of His wrath. Even Jesus, who perfectly embodied love, became angry. If you don’t believe it, just ask the thieving money changers in the temple! (See John 2:14-15.)

    Skeptics claim that love and wrath are incompatible, so the Bible contradicts itself or portrays a God who doesn’t exist or isn’t worth serving. Do they have a valid point?

    No indeed! People who pit one attribute of God against another invariably end up with egg on their face. Mercy or justice? Love or wrath? It isn’t “either/or”; it’s “both/and”!

    The very idea that love and wrath are mutually exclusive flies in the face of common sense and betrays a bogus definition of love. A “love” that cannot become angry amounts to nothing more than sickeningly-sweet, syrupy sentimentalism! The skeptics themselves don’t practice it, nor should they. Ask them, “Do you love your children?” Of course they do! “Have you ever been angry with them?” The honest answer would have to be, “Yes!” “Have you ever chastened them?” Some might say, “Oh, no, I love them too much to do that!” But hear the Spirit-inspired words of the wisest king who ruled Israel: “He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him disciplines him promptly” (Proverbs 13:24).

    God’s wrath is an expression of His righteousness and holiness. Those attributes are every bit as excellent as His love and mercy. If sin didn’t offend God’s very nature, He wouldn’t be righteous or holy. Now that would make Him a god (not God) who wasn’t worth serving!

- Joe Slater serves as minister of the Church of Christ in Justin, TX. He may be contacted through the congregation's website:

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