It comes up time and time again. Women who know Christ, have trusted in Him for salvation and new life, struggle with the notion that God is still angry with them because of something they’ve done in the past. Maybe that is how you feel. Do you wonder if you have a flawed understanding of salvation? Is salvation just getting eternal life when you die? From what are Christians saved? When you study the New Testament, you see that we are saved from many things, ourselves and our own flawed righteousness for example, but especially we are saved from the wrath of God. But, what does that mean? And, how does understanding that give you confidence that God is no longer angry with you or at you?
What is the wrath of God?
In Colossians 3:5-6, Paul referred to the wrath of God. God’s response to all evil and sin is righteous, holy wrath (Colossians 3:6). We must not project our experience with human anger onto God and assume that “His is the same, only bigger.” God’s wrath is not a mood or a fit of temper. God’s disposition toward sin and evil is as constant and unrelenting as His love and goodness. He hates and rejects evil in a perfect and holy anger. He will never bend or compromise with it. His own nature demands that He judge it through action. To preserve His creation God must destroy whatever would destroy it. (Romans 1:18-20) Every wrathful judgment of God in the history of the world has been a holy act of preservation.
God hates sin. It incurs His anger. You can probably recall a time when you incurred the anger of someone you love and needed to make some kind of restitution to “appease” their anger. The act of appeasement leads to that person now being satisfied because restitution has been made. So, the relationship can be restored. That is what God did for us. Romans 3:25 says that God presented Christ as a sacrifice of propitiation for our sins. Propitiation is an old word meaning to appease, satisfy. Some translations use the words “sacrifice of atonement” or “atoning sacrifice” instead. The concept of God’s satisfaction is the same.
God’s wrath is fully satisfied
God took action. God’s holy wrath against all sin is fully satisfied by Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross. Because God’s wrath against all sin is fully satisfied by what Jesus finished on the cross, God is able to extend mercy to every believer in Christ without compromise with evil. This is truth for you to know and claim. Romans 5:9 says this, “Much more then, because we have now been declared righteous by His blood, we will be saved through Him from God’s wrath.” There is no longer any sacrifice that anyone an ever do to appease God’s wrath against sin apart from what Christ has already done. Picture an empty altar—never again used.
God is no longer angry at you
Sometimes worship songs express truth so well that it can get implanted in our minds and completely engulf our hearts. The second verses of two beautiful songs we often sing in worship are like that. When I am tempted to think that God is angry with me, I let these beautifully penned words remind me of the truth.
#1—”In Christ Alone” (by Keith Getty & Stuart Townend)
In Christ alone, who took on flesh, fullness of God in helpless babe!
This gift of love and righteousness scorned by the ones He came to save
‘Til on that cross as Jesus died, the wrath of God was satisfied
For every sin on Him was laid; here in the death of Christ I live.
#2—”Before the Throne of God Above” (by Charitie Lees Smith)
When Satan tempts me to despair, and tells me of the guilt within
Upward I look and see Him there who made an end to all my sin
Because the sinless Savior died my sinful soul is counted free
For God the just is satisfied to look on Him and pardon me
To look on Him and pardon me
You CAN KNOW and live with confidence that God is no longer angry at your sin because you believe in His Son. God is SATISFIED…NO LONGER ANGRY with you because of anything you’ve ever done. How does that make you feel? Believe it, sister. Embrace it. Relish in it. Bask in it. As Paul writes in Colossians 3:12, you are dearly loved!
Six terms describe how our relationship with God is changed because of our faith in Jesus Christ—Propitiation, Reconciliation, Redemption, Forgiveness, Justification, and Sanctification. These 6 relationship changes are the direct result of Christ’s finished work on the cross so they are often called “words of the cross.” This blog covered #1 PROPITIATION. I will continue to cover the others in future blogs.
Word of the Cross #1 Propitiation: “God’s holy wrath is fully satisfied.”
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