God is love. His compassion never fails. His mercies are new every morning. He is like a tender mother who cherishes, feed, and nourishes her infant child. Nothing can separate the child of God from the love of his Heavenly Father. Such is the character of our God.
God is wrath. He is angry with the sinner every day, and he delivers hot justice to those who love not the one true God and despise their neighbor. One can find examples of God’s wrath in numerous places throughout the Bible. Nahum displays it for all to see:
… The Lord is a jealous and avenging God; the Lord is avenging and wrathful; the Lord takes vengeance on his adversaries and keeps wrath for his enemies.
… The Lord will by no means clear the guilty.
… Who can stand before his indignation? Who can endure the heat of his anger? His wrath is poured out like fire, and the rocks are broken into pieces by him.
… He will make a complete end of the adversaries, and will pursue his enemies into darkness.
… Thus says the Lord, “Though they are at full strength and many, they will be cut down and pass away.
… Behold, I am against you, declares the Lord of hosts, and I will burn your chariots in smoke, and the sword shall devour your young lions. I will cut off your prey from the earth, and the voice of your messengers shall no longer be heard.
… Behold, I am against you, declares the Lord of hosts, and will lift up your skirts over your face; and I will make nations look at your nakedness and kingdoms at your shame. I will throw filth at you and treat you with contempt and make you a spectacle. And all who look at you will shrink from you.
So with this in mind, let us consider the question, “For whom is such divine wrath reserved?”
First, such divine wrath is the inheritance of the Ninevites. Under the watchful sovereignty of God, they are committing great wickedness, and God promises a day of destruction will be their recompense.
Second, such divine wrath is foreordained for Satan and his demons. He is the fountainhead of all sin, and much devastation plagues the earth due to his influence and that of his fallen comrades. Eternal wrath and eternal hell awaits the Prince of Darkness.
Third, such divine wrath is promised to all men and women who have Adam as their forefather. Those who are born with original sin and prove their total depravity by living like Ninevites and following the teaching of Satan, they earn and are promised the same fate as spiritual father. And since all men and women stem from the loins of Adam and womb of Eve; and since all have forsaken God and fallen short of his ethical expectations; all are by nature and nurture children of God’s wrath headed for destruction.
Fourth, such divine wrath has already been poured out on Jesus Christ. The Father made him — who knew no sin — to be sin for us. The Son was targeted, charged, stripped, beaten, cursed, and hung on a tree for all to see. Though being sinless, he was the poster child of God’s wrath which was displayed for all the nations to see.
And why did the sinless and holy Christ drink the cup of the Father’s wrath? Not because he earned and deserved it, but because his bride earned and deserved such righteous indignation. Christ was treated like Nineveh, that his church might be treated like him. Christ was treated like Lucifer, that his bride might be treated like him.
So as we read the harsher portions of Scripture, let us slowly be filled with righteous indignation towards the wicked. However, let us quickly get our minds off of them and focus on our own condition. Let us quickly and regularly be filled with godly worship for the salvation provided through the Son. Yes, feel the rage of God. Yes, praise God for his fierce anger and sense of justice. But then feel the love of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit; for we are vile pagans who deserve eternal damnation but will be found worshiping in glory due to the anger of Father received by the Son.