S.R. John 4:7-111


  1. The love of God is a primary theme in the Scriptures and a wonderful topic for us to consider. (1 John 4: 7-11; John 3:16)
  2. Yet God’s wrath is also an important facet of God’s nature (John 3:36).
  3. In the last few years there has been a shift toward emphasizing the love of God to the neglect of His divine wrath.
    1. Last year (2013) a mainline Protestant denomination decided to remove the song, “In Christ Alone” from their hymnal.
    2. Richard Niebuhr back in the 1930s described this kind of revisionist Protestantism as a religion in which, “A God without wrath brought men without sin into a kingdom without judgment through the ministrations of a Christ without a cross.”
    3. Is Christ Alone the only way to escape the wrath of God or is there even such a thing as God’s wrath?
  4. Purpose:
    1. Emphasize balance and make vivid God’s wrath.
    2. Encourage each of us to live so as to avoid the wrath of God in judgment.


  1. The Nature of God’s Wrath
    1. God’s wrath is based upon His justice, righteousness and law not emotion.
      1. The gods of ancient idolaters, Romans, Greeks and Mesopotamians were capricious. Their wrath against men was selfish and emotionally irrational.
        1. God’s wrath is provoked by rebellion against His holiness by unrighteousness.
        2. (Romans 1:18-19; 32; 2;2, 5)
    2. The promise of God’s wrath is the result of sinful rebellion against Him.
      1. (Ephesians 2:3; 5:5-6; Col. 3:6)
  2. Demonstrations of God’s Wrath
    1. The great loss of life in the flood during Noah’s day (Genesis 7:21-23; 6:5, 11-12).
    2. God’s past Judgments as recorded by Jesus (Flood and Destruction of Sodom)
      1. (Luke 17:26-29; 2 Peter 2:6)
    3. The curses of the old covenant: (Deuteronomy 28: 15, 20-32, 45, 49-61).
    4. The destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans is another illustration of God’s punitive wrath. (Matthew 24; cf. 23:37, 38).
  3. Our Response to the Divine Wrath
    1. The fear of God’s wrath should cause us to avoid sin when we are tempted and cause us to repent when committed.
      1. There are some who argue that fear of God’s wrath is somehow a lower motivation or perhaps not even a legitimate motivation for obedience.
      2. Hebrews 10:31; 12:29; Romans 2:5-6
    2. Fear of God’s wrath will cause us to give up sin even when others know nothing of our disobedience.
      1. There is no escaping the wrath of God if we choose to become and remain the enemies of God (Deuteronomy 29:18-20; 32:36-39).
      2. Hebrews 4:12-1312 For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. 13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.”
    3. Knowing the coming wrath of God, we should be concerned about the souls of others (2 Corinthians 5:10-11)10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. 11 Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade men,”
  4. Conclusion:
    1. The love of God needs to be preached. We must also make people aware of the wrath of God.
      1. In the day of final judgment, there will be those who will face the wrath of God (Romans 2:5-9).
      2. The examples we have noted illustrate the firmness of God’s determination to punish unrighteousness.
    2. Consider the restraint necessary for God not to punish sin immediately. God is longsuffering also (2 Peter 3:9-10). Don’t mistake his patience for forgetful unconcern.
    3. God calls us for salvation, to escape the wrath of God upon the disobedient
      1. (1 Thessalonians 5:9-10)9 For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 who died for us, so that whether we are awake or asleep, we will live together with Him.”
      2. (1 Thessalonians 1:10) “and to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, that is Jesus, who rescues us from the wrath to come.”
      3. In Christ alone we can escape the wrath of God that we deserve.
        1. Isaiah 53:4-5, 10-11
        2. 1 John 2:1-2
      4. John 3:16; 8:24; Mark 16:16; Ephesians 1:3