August 20th, 2021 – Friday Morning
“The LORD said, ‘I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, from man to animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky; for I am sorry that I have made them.'” ~Genesis 6:7
“Then God said to Noah, ‘The end of all flesh has come before Me; for the earth is filled with violence because of them; and behold, I am about to destroy them with the earth.'” ~ Genesis 6:13
“‘Behold, I, even I am bringing the flood of water upon the earth, to destroy all flesh in which is the breath of life, from under heaven; everything that is on the earth shall perish.'” ~Genesis 6:17
The wrath of God against sin is terrible. It is not terrible in an evil sense, though; it is terrible in a terrifyingly righteous manner. This, of course, is due to the LORD God’s perfectly righteous and true nature and sin’s wickedness and treachery. It is quite wonderful that the times of God’s perfectly terrible wrath have been limited and specific because everything would have likely ceased to exist if He had poured it out in full measure with no recourse. As we will hopefully explore in the next devotional, even righteous Noah had to have a place of safety from the outpouring of the LORD’s judgment on sin (see the rest of this section in Genesis 6).
Why is God so angry and wrathful? Well, do you remember how we discussed His pain over the violence, wickedness, and corruption of the earth in our last time together? It is not just that His desire for mankind was being distorted and corrupted by man – no, the worst of it is that it was utter rebellion against His good and right plan for all of creation. In essence, God’s wrath against sin flows from His perfection (in every regard: His righteousness, justice, goodness, truth, etc.); He cannot tolerate sin and His own nature demands judgment against it. While He is VERY merciful and patient, desiring that none perish and all come to repentance (2 Peter 3:12), there is a limit to how far He will let corruption and decay go before He intervenes.
Just how far did His longsuffering nature go? In this case, it was until “all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth” (except for Noah) and until “the earth was filled with violence”. His mercy and patience are enormous! Yet, because of the unrelenting rebellion on earth, His goodness, righteousness, and justice required Him to act. To the extent of the wickedness was the extent of His judgment; because all flesh was corrupted, all flesh was destroyed. Wow. If you stop and think about it, that realization is awful, horrifying, and right at the same time.
God hasn’t changed. He is still slow to anger and abounding in mercy (see Psalm 103); His patience and longsuffering towards His creation is immense; yet, His perfect judgment and righteous wrath await every single person who has ever lived AND the outpouring of His anger against sin is coming upon His creation. Only those who have found His perfect atonement and forgiveness through the cross of Christ will be spared from His wrath, and only those whose hope is in Him will never be condemned.
My friends, praise the LORD that He is righteous and holy! Praise Him for His perfect judgment and terrible wrath! Praise Him for His wonderful love and mercy! And praise Him for the awful death of our risen Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! Let us live – in Christ – lives that reflect His beauty and holiness and let us who suffer at the hands of wickedness find comfort in His perfect justice. Let us never rejoice at His judgment on others, but do let us have compassion on them and let us warn those around us of His wrath on sin and His abundant mercy in Christ Jesus.
Soli Deo Gloria! (To God alone be the glory!)