Grace & Wrath

July 18th, 2020 § 1

To understand how the grace of God in Jesus and the wrath of God for an evil world are both a present reality, you must be able to see the two worlds.

As a believer we have been translated from this world of flesh and darkness through the Portal into the kingdom of the beloved Son.  The evil world still exists and those who are in the flesh are subject to that world and in that world the wrath of God abides upon them.

“He that believes on the Son has everlasting life: and he that believes not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abides on him.”  John 3:36

We have the Good News that Jesus took all of the wrath of God for us and if we only believe then all our sin will be considered as taken away completely and we will pass through the Door into a new world where there is no law and no judgment.  A new reality in the Spirit.  We are witnesses to this new world.  Witnesses of Jesus primarily. 

As Paul said to the Galatians, Christ will be of no benefit to the one who does not believe.  No benefit.  The unbelieving world receives no benefit from the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross, except for the love of God they receive from believers.

So while it is true that God loves the whole world and that He judged the whole world on the cross at the death of Jesus, that universal act only benefits the individuals who believe on Jesus.  If we believe then God baptizes us into the Spirit of God and thus into the history of Jesus where we also died and where we also were raised again.  If a person does not believe then he has no history with Jesus and he remains one of the fallen sons of disobedience still in Adam under the power of the evil one and subject to judgment.  Still a prisoner of this fallen world.

We see the judgment of God falling on Herod in the book of Acts after the resurrection.  Ananias and Saphira were also judged as unbelievers who were trying to become a member of the body of Christ with the wrong currency, a living faith being the only coin of God’s realm.  These were judgments from God falling on unbelievers even as the Good News of God’s grace was being proclaimed.  Believers need not fear the judgment of God.  Jesus said, “He who believes in Me shall not come into judgment but has already passed from death and into life.”  Believers have passed over into another world.  His world.  His realm where we sit with Him in heavenly places.

Paul said, “Behold the goodness and severity of God.  Goodness toward you who have believed but severity toward those who have refused to believe.”  So Aslan is not a tame lion and though He seeks to rescue the lost and has given His life that all may live, His roar and terror still lives because He lives and evil will be judged, one way (the cross) or another.

James Barron

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