I’ve come to a new understanding this week of how the wrath of God can be comforting.
Now that’s a pretty scary statement, isn’t it?
Well, I’m just trying to make sure you’re awake, and after all, Halloween is only a few weeks off. Let me explain what I mean.
I don’t mean “the wrath of God” as in God dangling people over a lake of fire and taking delight in punishing them for their sins.
What I mean is that there comes a time when human beings really lose their way, when they elevate petty, selfish goals over ideals like truth, defending the oppressed, and protecting the vulnerable.
We do that as individuals, and most of all we do that as a body politic.
And when that happens, in the church and in the world, we lose both the ability and the credibility to articulate justice.
At moments like that, we need something more and something higher than humanity’s best attempt at righteousness. We need God’s righteousness.
We need the searingly clarifying reminder that the other pole to God’s mercy is God’s justice.
Mercy always triumphs, but justice creates the conditions for mercy to flourish. Continue reading