(The following is taken from Arthur Pink)  "Excerpted text Copyright AGES Library, LLC.  All rights reserved.  Materials are reproduced by permission.")




          THE WRATH  OF GOD  from The Attributes of God




                                                       Arthur Pink




It is sad to find so many professing Christians who appear to regard the

wrath of God as something for which they need to make an apology, or at

least they wish there were no such thing. While some would not go so far

as to openly admit that they consider it a blemish on the Divine character,

yet they are far from regarding it with delight, they like not to think about

it, and they rarely hear it mentioned without a secret resentment rising up

in their hearts against it. Even with those who are more sober in their

judgment, not a few seem to imagine that there is a severity about the

Divine wrath which is too terrifying to form a theme for profitable

contemplation. Others harbor the delusion that God’s wrath is not

consistent with His goodness, and so seek to banish it from their thoughts.


Yes, many there are who turn away from a vision of God’s wrath as

though they were called to look upon some blotch in the Divine character,

or some blot upon the Divine government. But what saith the Scriptures?

As we turn to them we find that God has made no attempt to conceal the

fact of His wrath. He is not ashamed to make it known that vengeance and

fury belong unto Him. His own challenge is, “See now that I, even I, am

He, and there is no god with Me: I kill, and I make alive; I wound, and I

heal; neither is there any that can deliver out of My hand. For I lift up My

hand to heaven, and say, I live forever, If I whet My glittering sword, and

Mine hand take hold on judgment; I will render vengeance to Mine

enemies, and will reward them that hate Me” (Deuteronomy 32:39-

41). A study of the concordance will show that there are more references

in Scripture to the anger, fury, and wrath of God, than there are to His love

and tenderness. Because God is holy, He hates all sin; And because He

hates all sin, His anger burns against the sinner: Psalm 7:11.


Now the wrath of God is as much a Divine perfection as is His faithfulness,

power, or mercy. It must be so, for there is no blemish whatever, not the

slightest defect in the character of God; yet there would be if “wrath” were

absent from Him! Indifference to sin is a moral blemish, and he who hates

it not is a moral leper. How could He who is the Sum of all excellency look

with equal satisfaction upon virtue and vice, wisdom and folly? How could

He who is infinitely holy disregard sin and refuse to manifest His “severity”

(Romans 9:12) toward it? How could He who delights only in that

which is pure and lovely, loathe and hate not that which is impure and vile?

The very nature of God makes Hell as real a necessity, as imperatively and

eternally requisite as Heaven is. Not only is there no imperfection in God,

but there is no perfection in Him that is less perfect than another.


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. God is angry against sin

because it is a rebelling against His authority, a wrong done to His

inviolable sovereignty. Insurrectionists against God’s government shall be

made to know that God is the Lord. They shall be made to feel how great

that Majesty is which they despise, and how dreadful is that threatened

wrath which they so little regarded. Not that God’s anger is a malignant

and malicious retaliation, inflicting injury for the sake of it, or in return for

injury received. No; while God will vindicate His dominion as the

Governor of the universe, He will not be vindictive.


That Divine wrath is one of the perfections of God is not only evident from

the considerations presented above, but is also clearly established by the

express declarations of His own Word. “For the wrath of God is revealed

from heaven” (Romans 1:18). Robert Haldane comments on this verse

as follows:


It was revealed when the sentence of death was first pronounced, the earth

cursed, and man driven out of the earthly paradise; and afterwards by such

examples of punishment as those of the Deluge and the destruction of the

Cities of the Plain by fire from heaven; but especially by the reign of death

throughout the world. It was proclaimed in the curse of the law on every

transgression, and was intimated in the institution of sacrifice. In the 8th of

Romans, the apostle calls the attention of believers to the fact that the

whole creation has become subject to vanity, and groaneth and travaileth

together in pain. The same creation which declares that there is a God, and

publishes His glory, also proclaims that He is the Enemy of sin and the

Avenger of the crimes of men . . . But above all, the wrath of God was

revealed from heaven when the Son of God came down to manifest the

Divine character, and when that wrath was displayed in His sufferings and

death, in a manner more awful than by all the tokens God had before given

of His displeasure against sin. Besides this, the future and eternal

punishment of the wicked is now declared in terms more solemn and

explicit than formerly. Under the new dispensation there are two

revelations given from heaven, one of wrath, the other of grace.


Again; that the wrath of God is a Divine perfection is plainly demonstrated

by what we read of in Psalm 95:11, “Unto whom I sware in My

wrath.” There are two occasions of God “swearing”: in making promises

(Genesis 22:16), and in denouncing threatening (Deuteronomy

1:34). In the former, He swares in mercy to His children; in the latter, He

swares to terrify the wicked. An oath is for solemn confirmation:

Hebrews 6:16. In Genesis 22:16 God said, “By Myself have I

sworn.” In Psalm 89:35 He declares, “Once have I sworn by My

holiness.” While in Psalm 95:11 He affirmed, “I swear in My wrath.”

Thus the great Jehovah Himself appeals to His “wrath” as a perfection

equal to His “holiness”: He swares by the one as much as by the other!

Again; as in Christ “dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily”

(Colossians 2:9), and as all the Divine perfections are illustriously

displayed by Him (John 1:18), therefore do we read of “the wrath of

the Lamb” (Revelation 6:16).


The wrath of God is a perfection of the Divine character upon which we

need to frequently meditate. First, that our hearts may be duly impressed by

God’s detestation of sin. We are ever prone to regard sin lightly, to gloss

over its hideousness, to make excuses for it. But the more we study and

ponder God’s abhorrence of sin and His frightful vengeance upon it, the

more likely are we to realize its heinousness. Second, to beget a true fear in

our souls for God:


            “Let us have grace whereby we may serve God acceptably with

            reverence and godly fear: for our God is a consuming fire”

            (Hebrews 12:28,29).


We cannot serve Him “acceptably” unless there is due “reverence” for His

awful Majesty and “godly fear” of His righteous anger, and these are best

promoted by frequently calling to mind that “our God is a consuming fire.”

Third, to draw out our souls in fervent praise for having delivered us from

the wrath to come” (1 Thessalonians 1:10).


Our readiness or our reluctancy to meditate upon the wrath of God

becomes a sure test of how our hearts’ really stand affected toward Him. If

we do not truly rejoice in God, for what He is in Himself, and that because

of all the perfections which are eternally resident in Him, then how

dwelleth the love of God in us? Each of us needs to be most prayerfully on

his guard against devising an image of God in our thoughts which is

patterned after our own evil inclinations. Of old the Lord complained,


            “Thou thoughtest that I was altogether as thyself:  but I

            will reprove thee, and set them in order before thine eyes”

            (Psalm 50:21),

If we rejoice not


            at the remembrance of His holiness” (Psalm 97:12),


if we rejoice not to know that in a soon coming Day God will make a most

glorious display of His wrath, by taking vengeance on all who now oppose

Him, it is proof positive that our hearts are not in subjection to Him, that

we are yet in our sins, on the way to the everlasting burnings.


            Rejoice, O ye nations (Gentiles) His people, for He will avenge the

            blood of His servants, and will render vengeance to His

            adversaries” (Deuteronomy 32:43).


And again we read,


            “I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying Alleluia;

            Salvation, and glory, and honor, and power, unto the Lord our

            God; For true and righteous are His judgments: for He hath judged

            the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication,

            and hath avenged the blood of His servants at her hand. And again

            they said Alleluia.” (Revelation 19:13).


Great will be the rejoicing of the saints in that day when the Lord shall

vindicate His majesty, exercise His awful dominion, magnify His justice,

and overthrow the proud rebels who have dared to defy Him.


            “If thou Lord, shouldest mark (impute) iniquities, O Lord, who

            shall stand?” (Psalm 130:3).


Well may each of us ask this question, for it is written, “the ungodly shall

not stand in the judgment” (Psalm 1:5). How sorely was Christ’s soul

exercised with thoughts of God’s marking the iniquities of His people

when they were upon Him! He was “amazed and very heavy” (Mark

14:33). His awful agony, His bloody sweat, His strong cries and

supplications (Hebrews 5:7), His reiterated prayers (“If it be possible,

let this cup pass from Me”), His last dreadful cry, (“My God, My God,

why hast Thou forsaken Me?”) all manifest what fearful apprehensions He

had of what it was for God to “mark iniquities.” Well may poor sinners cry

out, “Lord who shall stand” when the Son of God Himself so trembled

beneath the weight of His wrath? If thou, my reader, hast not “fled for

refuge” to Christ, the only Savior, “how wilt thou do in the swelling of the

Jordan?” (Jeremiah 12:5)?


            When I consider how the goodness of God is abused by the

            greatest part of mankind, I cannot but be of his mind that said, The

            greatest miracle in the world is God’s patience and bounty to an

            ungrateful world. If a prince hath an enemy got into one of his

            towns, he doth not send them in provision, but lays close siege to

            the place, and doth what he can to starve them. But the great God,

            that could wink all His enemies into destruction, bears with them,

            and is at daily cost to maintain them. Well may He command us to

            bless them that curse us, who Himself does good to the evil and

            unthankful. But think not, sinners, that you shall escape thus; God’s

            mill goes slow, but grinds small; the more admirable His patience

            and bounty now is, the more dreadful and unsupportable will that

            fury be which ariseth out of His abused goodness. Nothing

            smoother than the sea, yet when stirred into a tempest, nothing

            rageth more. Nothing so sweet as the patience and goodness of

            God, and nothing so terrible as His wrath when it takes fire. (Wm

            Gurnall, 1660).


Then flee, my reader, flee to Christ; “flee from the wrath to come”

(Matthew 3:7) ere it be too late. Do not, we earnestly beseech you,

suppose that this message is intended for somebody else. It is to you! Do

not be contented by thinking you have already fled to Christ. Make

certain! Beg the Lord to search your heart and show you yourself.


A Word to Preachers. Brethren, do we in our oral ministry, preach on this

solemn subject as much as we ought? The Old Testament prophets

frequently told their hearers that their wicked lives provoked the Holy One

of Israel, and that they were treasuring up to themselves wrath against the

day of wrath. And conditions in the world are no better now than they

were then! Nothing is so calculated to arouse the careless and cause carnal

professors to search their hearts, as to enlarge upon the fact that “God is

angry with the wicked every day” (Psalm 7:11). The forerunner of

Christ warned his hearers to “flee from the wrath to come” (Matthew

3:7). The Savior bade His auditors


            “Fear Him, which after He hath killed, hath power to cast into Hell;

            yea, I say unto you. Fear Him” (Luke 12:5).


The apostle Paul said,


            “Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men”

            (2 Corinthians 5:11).


Faithfulness demands that we speak as plainly about Hell as about Heaven.



"Excerpted text Copyright AGES Library, LLC. All rights reserved.

Materials are reproduced by permission."


This material can be found at: