Monday, February 19, 2007

Wrath of God

Right now I'm reading Gary A. Haugen's book called "Good news about injustice a witness of courage in a hurting world." Haugen was one of the men appointed by the U.N. to build a case against those guilty of genocide in Rwanda. He has interesting perspective on the injustices of the world since he personally was knee deep in the mass graves of Rwanda. Here’s an interesting quote from his book about the wrath of God.

"God's wrath is out of fashion. It's not something that we hear about, talk about, or even think about. Like animal sacrifices, God's intense and severe anger toward sin strikes us as rather primitive - perhaps appropriate for dense, uncivilized, ancient peoples - something that God has gotten over. As J. I. Packer has observed, such a view probably comes from our habit of, 'following private religious hunches rather than learning about God from his own Word.'

If we truly want to know God, we must endeavor to understand the God who has made himself known in scripture, the God who cannot accommodate himself to the sin of injustice, who can't get used to it, who continually suffers with those who are brutalized in body and spirit by the arrogance of humans. As J. I. Packer has again helpfully commented:

'No doubt it is true that the subject of divine wrath has in the past been handled speculatively, irreverently, even malevolently. No doubt there have been some who have preached the wrath and damnation with tearless eyes and no pain in their hearts. No doubt the sight of small sects cheerfully consigning the whole world, apart form themselves, to hell has disgusted many. Yet if we would know God, it is vital that we face the truth concerning his wrath, however unfashionable it ma by, and however strong our initial prejudices against it. Otherwise we shall not understand the gospel of salvation from wrath, nor the propitiatory achievement of the cross, nor the wonder of the redeeming love of God, nor shall we understand the hand of God in history."

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