“I am the LORD [Yahweh], I do not change.”

Malachi 3:6

Introduction

Even though God’s Answer For America! includes some very serious and weighty content, it is not a message of “doom and gloom,” but rather a message of “truth and great hope!” Like many of God’s messages throughout biblical history we see both the “goodness and severity of God” (Romans 11:22).

Still there are those that do not believe God brings judgment today in what many call an “age of grace.” While we believe the book, God’s Answer clearly shows this is not the case, we believe this web page offers answers to those common objections to God’s judgment today.

Does God Still Bring Judgment Today?

Answering Statements and Objections against Judgment Today

The judgment or wrath of God is not a popular subject today, to say the least. It is a subject with many misconceptions, questions, and objections. Many ask how a loving God can send judgment. Others say God doesn’t bring judgment anymore since Jesus died on the cross. It is a subject filled with errors often caused by human reasoning and false teaching. And, like many subjects, there are extremes on both sides that need balance. We hope this will help shed light on this subject and provide some balance. Most of all we hope it reveals more of our heavenly Father’s heart.

We have provided two types of answers below, the short version and the expanded version.

Judgment upon America?

Many in the church are split on this subject. When people talk about possible judgment on America, the two main views that surface are:

Statement 1: “If God doesn’t judge America for all its sins, God has to apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah.”

Statement 2: “If God judges America, He has to apologize to Jesus and what He has accomplished on the cross . . . God is not judging America (or any country in the world today).”

Objections to God’s judgment today include:

Objection 1: God’s wrath was already poured out on Jesus on the cross, so God no longer brings judgment today. Therefore, God’s wrath no longer comes upon sinful people or nations.

Objection 2: How can a loving God bring judgment that brings destruction and even death?

Objection 3: Cite Romans 2:4, interpreting that it is not the judgment of God but rather only the goodness of God that leads us to repentance.

Objection 4: God said He would have spared Sodom and Gomorrah if there were only ten righteous, and there are too many Christians in America for God to bring judgment upon our nation.

Short Answer

Yes. God does still bring judgment today. As mentioned in our new book, God’s Answer For America, we believe God’s judgments are redemptive and motivated out of love and are consistent with His character. They are for the best, usually progressive, and often saved as a last resort. God is love (1 John 4:8) and everything He does is an extension of His divine love and nature. As we explain in our “expanded answer” below, one problem is many have a wrong view of what real love is.

We hear so much of God’s love and goodness today we are usually left with a one-sided, shallow view of God. The truth is we cannot truly know and appreciate how great God’s love, mercy, and goodness are without understanding how great His justice, severity, and wrath against sin and it’s destructive effects (Rom. 1:18).

We’ve also found those many have a wrong view of what judgment really is. Judgment is not the actions of a mean, vindictive God, but it is actually His goodness, justice and love in operation. And that there is a difference between God’s judgment and His wrath.

God’s judgments are motivated out of His love, redemptive and come to deal with evil, bring justice, and turn people back to righteousness. (See Amos 4)

God’s Wrath brings punishment and destruction upon wickedness and evil. 2 Examples: Sodom and Gomorrah, the 7 bowls of wrath targeted against the Antichrist and his followers.

We must understand, God’s objective is life and restoration, not death and destruction (John 10:10; Ezek. 33:11). Again, God’s warnings and redemptive judgments come not to condemn but rather to awaken and turn individuals, city, or nation from a path of self-destruction. God’s judgments are for the good and based out of His incredible love!

Jesus’ Example of Righteous Anger Based on Love
We often see Jesus portrayed as a loving gentle lamb, meek and mild. But this is only one side of Jesus. Like His Father, Yeshua-Jesus displayed a full range of emotions without sin. He rejoiced, He laughed, He wept, He marveled, He blessed, and He exuded love. He also demonstrated His zeal and anger when He cleansed the Temple.

It is pretty clear that when Jesus went to cleanse the temple, He was not happy! He had a whip and He was both passionate and angry! He surely had a fire in His eyes and an authority in His voice that let the temple guards or priests know “do not try and stop Me!” When He was turning over the tables and driving them out with a whip…it may have looked like anger on the surface, but it was love—It was love! His anger and wrath were motivated by a consuming zeal and love for His Father’s house (John 2:17)!

We must always remember, first and foremost God is not only love but He is also holy, and that righteousness and justice are the foundation of His throne (Psalm 89:14). There are certain judgments throughout Biblical and world history that are clear evidence of His justice, righteousness, holiness and love. And since sin continues to corrupt, destroy, and spread throughout the earth, God’s wrath against sin remains (John3:36). And the Holy Spirit convicts the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of the “judgment of sin” (John 16:8-9).

Remember, when God’s judgments come, the people learn what is right and just (Isaiah 26:9).

God’s judgments are rooted in His divine nature
“Yahweh, the Lord God, is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. But He does not leave the guilty unpunished, and the sins of the parents are also upon their children and grandchildren; the entire family is affected to the third and the fourth generation.” (Exodus 34:6-7).

In the intense days ahead all the world will know God’s judgments are upon the earth. He will show them clearly that He is their only hope and is ready to help them if they will truly turn to Him.

Expanded Answer:
Answering Objections

While we believe our book “God’s Answer For America” already answers many of the objections listed above, we answer each here. We hope this will help bring greater clarity and provide understanding of God’s amazing and unchanging character and His perfect ways.

Faulty Human Reasoning vs God’s Ways
We have seen good men of God writing about the love of God and struggling to resolve how a loving God could allow or be involved somehow in natural disasters even though Old and New Testament scripture show this to often be the case.

First we need to begin by understanding we can never allow psychology to shape our theology. Natural human reasoning is always subject to error. The example of how could a loving God create a place like hell does not compute in natural human terms. But God’s ways are so far higher than ours (Isaiah 55:9). The boundless depth and brilliance of His thoughts and ways confound us and to man’s limited mind can even appear illogical. That’s why God has already communicated how He thinks and works from Genesis to Revelation. His Word brings light and understanding of truth, so we should always start there.

Rightly Dividing Scripture
2 Timothy 2:15 underscores the importance that we “rightly divide the Word of Truth.” Too often teachers highlight a couple scriptures, exaggerate their meaning or pull them out of context, while ignoring many of the scriptures that contradict their personal belief. This leads to distorted or false doctrine. Then those scriptures that do seem to contradict their teaching they will do interpretational gymnastics, twisting and turning the meaning of a word or scripture to try to line it up with their belief, and ignore solid biblical hermeneutics. We are not to impose our meaning or beliefs upon the text, but to read it as the author intended. There must be balance.

The Word of God read in full context and in light of all other scripture brings balance and a much more accurate interpretation. Sadly, many Christians today are too quick to embrace any good sounding message from a pastor, book, or popular person on TV. The Apostle Paul commended those who would search the scriptures for themselves to make sure that he spoke the truth (Acts 17:11 NIV). Even regarding the message of this book, we encourage you to review and verify all the scriptures and examples we have used and allow the Holy Spirit to guide you into all truth (John 16:13).

Answering Objection #1:

“God’s wrath was already poured out on Jesus on the cross, so God no longer brings judgment today. Therefore, God’s wrath no longer comes upon sinful people or nations today.”

Also Answering Statement #2:
“If God judges America, then He will have to apologize to Jesus for what He accomplished on the cross.”

Both Objection #1 and Statement # 2 are based on an extreme and distorted grace message (known as hyper-grace). The balanced study of the scripture exposes the error and human reasoning of Statement #2. We see that scripturally the wrath of God still remains (John 3:36; Romans 1:18; Colossians 3:5-6; and Ephesians 5:6-7).

To confirm this let’s take a quick look at some examples of judgments AFTER the cross:

  • Ananias and Sapphira were killed for lying to the Holy Spirit (Acts 5).
  • King Herod struck and consumed by judgment (Acts 12)
  • The destruction of Jerusalem (70 A.D.) Jesus prophesied this.
  • Jesus spoke judgment on several towns because they wouldn’t repent, and these towns no longer exist (Matthew 11:20-24).
  • The Book of Revelation clearly describing judgment and wrath being poured out, before Jesus returns.

The above New Testament list clearly shows judgments occurring after Jesus work on the cross, including judgments Jesus spoke himself. These are all contrary to the false thinking that God’s wrath and judgment are no longer in operation.

Besides a distorted grace message, another reason for these errors regarding God’s wrath and judgment today is a wrong view of God’s character. Many Pastors and Christians today emphasize the “seeker friendly” attributes of God in order to make Him market friendly to the masses. This greatly limits our view of God and dwarfs our understanding of so many things. As Tozer once wrote, “The man who comes to a right belief about God is relieved of ten thousand temporal problems”

Two Factors To Understanding
There are two key factors we believe will help the Church find balance regarding whether God still brings judgment today or not.

  1. Jesus’ work on the cross, what really changed?
  2. The right view of God.

First we take a brief look at why Jesus Christ came and what He accomplished on the cross. Then how that relates to possible judgment today.

1. Jesus’ Work on the Cross

God’s love sent Jesus Christ to pay the ultimate sacrifice for the sins of the whole world (John 3:16). Jesus was the Lamb of God, and through His death, provided redemption for mankind. Now, this glorious salvation is available for all who make Him Lord of their lives (Romans 10:9-10).

What Changed?
Does this mean that now all the world’s sin, including America’s sins, were judged at the cross? Does this mean the wages of sin are no longer death? Does this mean the wrath of God no longer comes upon the world, even if they do not believe in and follow Christ? What does God’s Word say about it?

We’ve all heard of John 3:16 many times, but how often have we heard John 3:36, twenty verses later?

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

It cannot get any clearer. Those that reject Jesus Christ as Lord are still subject to the wrath of God. As the Apostle Paul writes in Romans:

“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

Notice Paul says the “wrath of God IS revealed” — present tense. God’s wrath still operates against sin today. Paul, even warns believers about willfully practicing sin because of God’s wrath against it:

“Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience.“ Colossians 3:5-6

So we clearly see Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross did not stop the wrath or judgment of God from coming upon those in sin today. Only those who receive Christ as Lord, are truly covered by His blood (Matthew 7:21-23).

Biblical Example: The First Passover — Did it Stop Judgment?
We are all familiar with the story of Moses and the first Passover. The blood on the door posts symbolized what Jesus Christ’s blood would do for us who call him Lord.

Exodus 11-12 tells how the first Passover began the night the final plague came upon Egypt. When God’s judgment of death of the first born (His wrath) came upon all of Egypt, “About midnight I will go throughout Egypt” (Exodus 11:4). God’s wrath only bypassed the homes of those who were obedient and applied the blood of the lamb on their doorway.

Now, think about this question. Did the Passover blood stop the judgment of God from coming upon Egypt? No! In fact, the reason it’s called “Passover” is because God’s wrath “passed over” the homes with the blood of the lamb on their doorposts. This has not changed, God’s judgment and wrath still comes today in one form or another. Only those who have been covered by the blood of Christ, shed for us on the cross, can be assured that God’s wrath will not fall on them (1 Thessalonians 5:9).

2. The Right View of God

The right view of God lays a proper foundation to rightly discern and understand the things of God. For “the fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, And the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.” Proverbs 9:10. While the depths of God are infinite, His Word reveals His character, how He thinks, how He works, how He responds to us, and what He expects. Through the Bible we see a majestic, holy, loving, just, passionate, powerful, terrifying, merciful, and awe-inspiring God!

One-Sided God?
In the American Church today the view of God for most is very shallow. Many tend to focus only on one-side of God — the side they consider good — His love, mercy, grace, peace, goodness, and blessings. We strip away so many facets of His character, then we present Him to the world the way we think they might like Him. This does a great disservice to Him, to the Church, and to the world.

This is why our nation and most of our churches have lost all fear and sense of the awesomeness and greatness of God. We must present God in His fullness!

Like the Children of Israel that made the golden calf — many have fashioned God into the image they are comfortable with.

Do We Really Know Him?
It’s really important we get this: We cannot truly understand and know the depths of God’s love, goodness, mercy, and grace apart from understanding and knowing His holiness, justice, judgment, and wrath. Our God is a consuming fire (Hebrews 12:29)! The prophet Jeremiah revealed that God delights in all His attributes, for they are all divine:

“Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom,
Let not the mighty man glory in his might,
Nor let the rich man glory in his riches;
But let him who glories glory in this,
That he understands and knows Me, That I am the LORD,
Exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth.
For in these I delight,” says the LORD.
Jeremiah. 9: 23-24

God has not changed! (Malachi 3:6)

Good God vs God of Wrath?
When’s the last time you heard a message on the judgment or wrath of God? You could probably count on one hand. When’s the last time you heard a message on the goodness or love of God? Now you probably need to get out a calculator!

How many have heard a minister shout out “God is good!” then the congregation respond “all the time!” Then vibrant rejoicing breaks out with more shouts of “God is good — all the time!” But then many of these same people will reject any thought of the wrath or judgment of God, because it does not line up with their definition of what “good” is. And so they cannot fathom or resolve such a “good” or “loving” God” being angry, wrathful, or bringing judgment.

It’s true, “God is good all the time” but what is ones definition of “good?” We personally grew up in the Word of Faith movement, and there are spiritual truths we value and still adhere to today. But as with most movements there were extremes that led to false doctrine. One extreme is based on John 10:10 was:

Anything good = God did it
Anything that looks bad = the Devil did it

However, focusing only on this in light of all other scripture can led to an unbalanced and unbiblical mindset. Many are actually very shocked to read the following verse in Isaiah:

“I form the light and create darkness,
I make peace and create calamity; I, the LORD, do all these.”
Isaiah 45:7

Yes, God creates and uses calamity. But because this doesn’t fit a “loving and good God” mindset, many explain it away as Old Testament, or that all changed when Jesus came. But as we have already shown, that is a false assumption.

Example: Who Did It? Was it the Devil?
Who turned Moses hand to leprosy while he was before God at the burning bush on holy ground? Was it God or Satan that did that? God did it for Moses to use as a sign.

Who brought the ten plagues upon Egypt, which included the Egyptians being struck with boils, hail with fire, and death?

Who brought the global flood wiping out wicked humanity, except for those in the ark? God clearly did all these.

There are numerous examples from Genesis to Revelation of God bringing justified calamity, plagues, and judgment for His greater plans and purposes. Now, this is not to say every sickness or calamity is from God. God will allow the devil to bring some disasters—as with Job. Other times we are just reaping what we have sown(Galatians 6:7), or we have opened the door for satan through sin and disobedience.

God’s Love
As we stated earlier, one problem is most people today have a wrong view of what real love is. Most see “love” as a feel good, soft, warm, kind, caring, and gentle. Therefore many today mistakenly make God to look more like a Mother rather than a Father (such a the popular book The Shack)!

God’s love is not based on cuddly feelings, but God’s love is a holy love that encapsulates all His attributes. As we will soon see both God’s goodness and wrath are based on His holiness and love.

Love sometimes requires doing things that seem very hard or even negative or bad to others. For instance, a spanking or punishment to a disobedient child feels “bad” and not “good” to them, but to the loving parent, it is good and works for the best. The parent sees it as a way to help the child understand there are negative and sometimes painful consequences to bad behavior or actions. They also consider it a way to build self discipline and discourage destructive and rebellious behavior. Jesus said “As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten….” Revelation 3:19

Example of Unbalanced View of God
This reminds us of part of story told by Dr. Michael Brown in His message What Happened to the Wrath of God? He tells of how he and his wife were sitting in a service when the preacher said that “if you don’t believe in the goodness of God, then you don’t believe in the God of the Bible.” And everyone was getting very excited, Then he pointed to Nahum 1: 7 as proof.

“The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble.
He cares for those who trust in him.”

Dr. Brown went on to say that yes God is very good, but that the preacher ignored the verses directly before which say:

“The mountains quake before Him,
The hills melt, And the earth heaves at His presence,
Yes, the world and all who dwell in it.
Who can stand before His indignation?
And who can endure the fierceness of His anger?
His fury is poured out like fire,
And the rocks are thrown down by Him.
The Lord is good,
A stronghold in the day of trouble;
And He knows those who trust in Him.”
Nahum 1: 5-7

Dr. Michael Brown went on to say: “Does that go together with our concept of goodness?” then he said, “We’ve so lost sight of justice, that we have no appreciation for mercy.”

Ignoring those previous scriptures that provide context for the fullness of God’s goodness, rob the people from knowing the true depths of God. There must be balance.

Good Anger?
Is it ok to get angry? Ephesians 4:26 says we can “Be angry and sin not.” Anger is not sin, if it is just. Can you think of a time when you were justifiably angry? For example, if someone was hurting or abusing a loved one or your child, what would your response be? Would you be angry? Who wouldn’t?!

Having a just anger when someone does an injustice against us or others is natural. Sinful anger comes from selfish motives, such as those times when we don’t  get our way. Unjustified anger is sin and destructive. Just anger, sometimes referred to as righteous indignation is natural, for we are made in God’s image with a range of emotions like Him. There are times God rejoices, laughs, and is well pleased. Then there are also times when God is angry, and even extremely angry which is usually defined as “wrath.” When God is angry or wrathful it is perfectly justified, as He is righteous in all His ways.

One thing righteous anger is based upon is love. Usually the deeper our love and passion for something (like a family member), the more intense the emotion of anger will be if we see the object of our love harmed or mistreated. Conversely the happier we are when they are treated well or blessed. While many view love as something soft, warm, and fuzzy they need to understand that pure love is also strong, passionate, zealous and can bring forth a very good and justified anger.

As we shared in the Short Answer when Jesus cleansed the Temple, it may have looked like anger to onlookers, but it was truly a pure love! His love was expressed though anger and wrath. His anger and wrath was motivated by a consuming zeal and love for His Father’s house (John 2:17)!

Answering Objection #2:

“How can a loving God send judgment that brings destruction and even death?”

Many are asking the wrong question “how can a loving God send judgment?” The real question we should be asking is “since God is so loving, how can He not bring judgment (another word for justice) to confront evil and sin?” Should not a loving and just God eventually confront those things (evil and sin) that corrupts, bring destruction, and ultimately lead to eternal death?

“Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the LORD your God, for He is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and He relents from sending calamity [disaster].” Joel 2:13 (NIV)

In the words of Abraham – “Will not the judge of all the earth do right?” Genesis 18:25. We must remember God operates in perfect and divine justice. Also that His ways are far higher than our limited human reasoning. Can we presume to know all details behind the scenes. Can we Judge God? Who are we in our limited knowing and understanding to look at God’s judgments and say that was not fair or not right?

ANSWERING A KEY QUESTION
How Could A Loving God Allow Deadly Disasters?
Many struggle with the concept of a “loving God” allowing such deadly disasters with and seemingly innocent people killed? The following is one aspect to understanding why God would allow 9/11, deadly natural disasters. and other tragedies as the Sandy Hook Elementary shootings.

First, we know evil exists because man made a choice to rebel against God, allowing sin, destruction and death into the world. God will not violate free-will, and as we shared in Chapter 3 (of God’s Answer For America), spiritual and moral laws when broken have consequences (cause and effect). Sin and unbiblical choices affect nations, even the innocent. The destructive nature of sin is such that it not only negatively affects the people partaking of it, it also affects the people and things around it.

Second, as previously shared, when a nation rejects God and His righteous ways that bring life and blessing,  that nation instead opens the door to a curse, destruction, and death to invade. Great sin and rebellion always create an atmosphere for demonic forces to operate and even thrive in. The more we rebel and go deeper into sin individually and as a nation, the more God’s goodness and protection lifts, causing these demonic forces to be strengthened, emboldened, and demon-strate evil. Thus, we will witness such horrific scenes such as public shootings. The later part of the “America. America!” prophecy declares this truth.

Tragically, America is witnessing the fruit of her own rebellious ways as a nation,  and it is even affecting our children. The tragic news of the children killed at Sandy Hook Elementary is just one example of this.

God’s Divine Wrath
When Jesus cleansed the temple, it was with a righteous anger out of zeal and love. It was divine. In fact, all of God’s attributes are divine. His wrath is divine:

“Others harbor the delusion that God’s wrath is not consistent with His goodness, and so seek to banish it from their thoughts the wrath of God is as much a divine perfection as is His faithfulness, power, or mercy.” — A.W. Pink, The Attributes of God

We have seen that the anger and wrath of God is really an expression of His love. But why does His wrath come?

Why God’s Wrath Comes
Since the fall of man allowed sin and death to enter the world, sin has been a destructive force upon mankind. Sin may bring temporary pleasure for a moment or season, but it pollutes souls and the hearts of people and nations, eventually leading to deeper sin—it corrupts, it steals, it kills, and it destroys. Sins tentacles and negative affects eventually spread like a cancer to surrounding people, cities, and even defiles the land (Leviticus 18:24-25). The wages of sin is ultimately permanent separation from God and eternity in the lake of fire (Matthew 25:41; Revelation 20:10-15). God’s laws were set in place to protect mankind from the harm and destruction of sin! And so it has been rightly said:

“Sin is not bad because it is forbidden—sin is forbidden because it’s bad!” (Sin is bad for us!)

Would a loving God just stand back forever and let His beloved creation, mankind, self-destruct? That’s one reason Paul stated several times that sin incurs the divine wrath of God (Romans 1:18). As you will see soon, God’s judgments often come at certain times in response to sin and injustice, and to also help limit the expansion of sin. In Noah’s day God’s great judgment saved mankind from extinction.

The Hero of History
Like in a movie, with a villain killing people, or an evil force trying to destroy cities and mankind, we expect to see a hero rise to conquer the evil, for justice and good triumph in the end. Actually, this is exactly what we are witnessing play out throughout the history of the world. The script is already written (Genesis to Revelation). The hero has already risen (Jesus Christ), and both the villains and evil will be done away with in the end (Revelation 20-22). It’s just not packed into a two-hour move. Instead this astounding story will span over 7,000 years. It is God’s story. It is His-story. History in the making. It’s amazing that God has given all His people a key role to play in the greatest story ever told. You have a part to play!

At this point of the story sin continues to corrupt, destroy, and spread. And so God’s wrath against sin remains (John3:36).

God’s Heart For Humanity
In the light of the more severe side of God, we must always remember the most important thing on God’s heart are souls. He sees and cares for broken lives,  the deceived, the bound and broken, for the prodigals who have lost their way, and for those who have never known Him – and are held captive by the enemy. He came to seek and save the lost, no matter what the cost (Luke 19:10). His heart is for the nations.

Biblical Examples: God’s Justice, Wrath and Judgment Saving Man
God’s judgment sometimes involved a surgical like removal of certain cities or societies before their corruption and great sin spread like a cancer to others. Sometimes, He allowed these to continue for hundreds of years for His purposes, or until it reached a specific level that justified a certain type of judgment. Following are three examples:

1. Noah and the flood. For certain reasons we do not have time to go into here (see Genesis 6), great sin and wickedness had spread throughout the earth. There was only one righteous man and his family left, who God saved and setup to replenish the earth. God’s judgment saved mankind.

2. The wiping out of Sodom and Gomorrah. Not only was there great perversion, rampant homosexuality (Jude 1:7), and wickedness, but there was also great pride and injustice (Ezekiel 16:49-50). This could have also spread to surrounding cities, but God’s judgment stopped it here.

3. The destruction and removal of the Canaanites. Many critics point to this is as barbaric. They cannot believe that a “loving God” would order the total annihilation of certain cities including children and animals. But we need to remember two things. First, God sees it all and knows exactly what was going on (much more than man does!), and what would end up happening if things were allowed to continue. Second, as previously stated, we must read scripture in light of all other scripture to get a fuller picture of what was happening and why.

Briefly, the Bible referenced the Canaanites several times about what kind of people they were. God had given the Canaanites over 400 years to repent. The Bible refers to their wickedness, cruelty, perversion, incest, homosexuality, bestiality, child sacrifice, and more. It is also said that archaeologists confirmed this civilization was rife with sexual disease, even the children were infected, no doubt resulting from their wicked practices. They also lived at the crossroads of the world, and if not dealt with at a certain point, it could have spread much further. These are some of the many very good reasons God had some cities wiped out. For “Will not the judge of all the earth do right” (Genesis 18:25)?

We also need to remember, that God has given everyone a choice. He doesn’t want the love of robots or love out of duty, any more than we would. And so part of God’s wrath being revealed is allowing insistent sinners to progress deeper into the depravity of sin and destruction, as is described in Romans 1:18-32.

We have looked at how God’s amazing love for mankind and His intense hatred for the destructive affects of sin stir up His wrath against sin and wickedness. But, there is another foundational factor that brings God’s wrath and eventual judgment — His Justice.

God’s Divine Justice (and Judgment)
“Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; Mercy and truth go before Your face.” Psalm 89:14. Young’s Literal Translation says “Righteousness and judgment are the fixed place of Thy throne.”

All of God’s attributes are based upon His righteousness and justice. God’s throne has not changed, He has not changed. (Malachi 3:6). For if God did not do what was right and just His throne would diminish. But, His ways are perfect and it is His divine nature to always do what is right and just. Just as He put inside all of us a natural knowing of right from wrong, and justice from injustice. Justice is defined as making something right.

Justice and judgment are linked,  as we cannot have one without the other. Just as in a court of law you cannot have justice without a judgment. This then results in an act of justice being carried out in numerous ways. This is why, biblically speaking, there are many levels and forms of Judgment. The Bible shows many examples such as God lifting His hand of blessings and protection from unrepentant people, also from the effects of sin itself, to His wrath being poured out.

Jesus cleansing the Temples was a form of judgment. He observed what was happening and became very angry because of His love for God’s House, for people, and hatred for wickedness. Then at the appointed time, the gavel came down and He responded with action, and cleaned house.

One reason judgment comes is so we can learn to do what is right. “For when Your judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.” Isaiah 26:9. Again, just as in a court of law, judgment comes to make right and then discourage the kind of behavior that caused the judgment to come in the first place.

The Tipping Point
Almighty God who sees all and knows all extends great mercy, love and truth, but there is a tipping point when sin or injustice becomes so great for so long that His justice must respond. Otherwise He would not be just.

“The LORD is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished.” Numbers 14:18

God in His great mercy and goodness allows more than enough time for repentance so there is no excuse when judgment does come. This is actually what Romans 2:4 is saying, that it’s “the goodness of God that leads men to repentance.”

Answering Objection #3:

“It’s not the judgment of God, but rather only the goodness of God that leads us repentance (Romans 2:4).”

Some mistakenly think this means it is only goodness of God’s love, blessing, mercy, that causes men to repent. The good news is some will repent and turn to God because He is so good. However, context is key, and the context of Romans 2:4 follows after Romans 1, about God’s wrath bring revealed against sin. Second, Paul is saying that it is the goodness of God’s amazing patience in delaying His wrath and judgment that gives men time to repent, and will influence some to do so. The New Living Translation is considered by many to be very accurate in translation of the Greek meaning, renders this verse as follows:

“Don’t you realize how kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Or don’t you care? Can’t you see how kind He has been in giving you time to turn from your sin?” Romans 2:4 (NLT)

Delay Does Not Mean Approval
Unfortunately God’s incredible patience is often mistaken for His approval. They think judgment delayed means it’s not going to happen, or that God doesn’t work that way anymore.

The fact is, the longer judgment is delayed, the more intense it gets. As judgment piles up like a dam holding back a powerful flood waters. Then when the dam finally breaks it can be devastating. This is one reason we encourage people not to pray for mercy only. Praying for mercy does not deal with the sin issue. Praying for mercy only delays judgment, to a point. There is only one thing that will advert or stop judgment from coming — repentance.

Only One Thing Can Stop It!
Only genuine repentance will turn away God’s wrath and judgment. Likewise, only national repentance will stop a devastating judgment coming upon a nation. During the civil war, President Abraham Lincoln understood this and so included in his Nation Day of Prayer Proclamation proclaimed: “Genuine repentance will lead to mercy.” For even in the midst of God’s great wrath and judgment, God will have mercy upon those who turn to Him. “In wrath remember mercy.” Habakkuk 3:2. God delights in showing mercy.

Another Objection: Mercy Triumphs Over Judgment?

Some use “Mercy triumphs over judgment” (James 2:13), to make a case that God no longer brings judgment. One could prove most anything if quoting a single verse out of context was acceptable. But it is not. The context for James 2:13 is related to our judgment of others. James is saying if we show mercy, then God will also show mercy when He judges us. It has nothing to do with if God brings judgment, but when.

The Goodness and Severity of God

In A.W. Pink’s, The Attributes of God, he also wrote:

“The wrath of God is His eternal detestation of all unrighteousness. It is the displeasure and indignation of Divine equity against evil. It is the holiness of God stirred into activity against sin. It is the moving cause of that just sentence which He passes upon evil-doers…The greatest miracle in the world is God’s patience and bounty to an ungrateful world…[There is] nothing so sweet as the patience and goodness of God, and nothing so terrible as His wrath when it takes fire.”

As we have seen, all of God’s attributes are divine and based upon His righteousness and justice. We see a grand balance and fullness in God’s attributes with: love for mankind, and hate for sin, delight, joy, anger and wrath, mercy and Judgment, the Lion and the Lamb.

There are also two sides of the Lamb. Jesus humbled Himself as the Lamb of God, led to the slaughter. But, we also see in Revelation 8, the kings of the earth hiding themselves in the rocks and caves because they are so terrified by the “wrath of the Lamb.”

“Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God” Romans 11:22

We must keep a balanced view of God. If we focus too much on His mercy we get too soft a view of God. If we focus too much on His justice and wrath we get to hard a view of God. One brings love the other brings fear (awe and reverence). We need both views to better know and appreciate the depth and majesty of God. We quoted this before but we believe it bears repeating:

“Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom,
Let not the mighty man glory in his might,
Nor let the rich man glory in his riches;
But let him who glories glory in this,
That he understands and knows Me, That I am the LORD,
Exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth.
For in these I delight,” says the LORD.
Jeremiah. 9: 23-24

God’s justice demands punishment for sin and wickedness. His desires is to give mercy and provide forgiveness. Because of God’s great love and mercy His warnings sometimes come as an appeal. God will exercise mercy as long as He can, but when His mercy and goodness is taken too lightly, and there is no real repentance, then there is a point when His justice must come.

Answering Objection #4:

“God said He would have spared Sodom and Gomorrah if there were only ten righteous, and there are too many Christians in America for God to brings judgment.”

First, Sodom and Gomorrah were much smaller in population than the over 300 million living In America. So ten people in Sodom and Gomorrah may be a larger percentage of the population than most realize.

Second, there is a point when God’s judgment comes to an unrepentant people or nation no matter who lives there.

Example: God said to Ezekiel that judgment and destruction was coming to an unrepentant Judah even if some of the most righteous men in biblical history were living there and pleading with Him not to.

“When a land sins against Me by persistent unfaithfulness, I will stretch out My hand against it; I will cut off its supply of bread, send famine on it, and cut off man and beast from it. Even if these three men, Noah, Daniel, and Job, were in it, they would deliver only themselves by their righteousness,” says the Lord GOD.” Ezekiel 14:13-14 (also see verses15-20)

God will protect those that are truly His in the midst of great judgment. For Noah and his family there was an ark. Lot and His family were escorted out of the city before destruction came. God protected those in Goshen in the midst of the more severe plagues/judgments upon a prideful Egypt. For those in Ezekial 9 God marked those to be protected in the midst of judgment.

So America is not immune to great judgment, in fact, America is ripe for it. But God can protect those close to Him in the midst of it all (Psalm 91).

Conclusion

We have shared how God’s anger and wrath is really an expression of His love and justice. For it’s out of His great love for mankind, and His zealous hatred for sin that destroys what He loves that His wrath revealed against sin.

We also shared how many in the Church reject any form of warning or judgment today because it doesn’t match their shallow view of a “good” or “loving” God. While others swing to the other extreme saying the judgment and wrath of God is coming to destroy America no matter what we do. Both need balance.

So, while many in the Church think a loving God will not bring judgment, it is actually because of love and justice that He does bring judgment! As we have seen, God is great in loving kindness and slow to anger, but there is also a point when His cup of wrath fills up and then God is compelled by His righteousness and justice to respond. He then pours it out against great wickedness, perversion, greed and injustice so that justice and righteousness will prevail, otherwise He would not be just and holy.

Yes, God does still bring judgment today. Thankfully, before great judgment does comes, God will go to great lengths to warn a nation as He has been doing with America.