God’s Blessed Wrath

Eight Reasons why the doctrine of hell sets our faces like flint toward Jerusalem from Kevin DeYoung:

1. We need God’s wrath to keep us honest about evangelism. “The one thing that matters for all eternity [is] urging sinners to be reconciled to God.”

2. We need God’s wrath in order to forgive our enemies. Romans 12:16. “The only way to look past our deepest hurts and betrayals is to rest assured that every sin against us has been paid for on the cross or will be punished in hell. We don’t have to seek vigilante justice, because God will be our just judge.”

3. We need God’s wrath in order to risk our lives for Jesus’ sake. Our “innocence will be established when God finally judges [our] persecutors.”

4. We need God’s wrath in order to live holy lives. Gal 6:6-7; Matt 10:28. “Sometimes we need to literally scare the hell out of people.”

5. We need God’s wrath in order to understand what mercy means. “Divine mercy without divine wrath is meaningless.” Eph. 2:3; John 3:18; Rom. 5:10

6. We need God’s wrath in order to grasp how wonderful heaven will be. Hell is as vivid as heaven, there is no greater contrast. No torment is as ghastly as hell while no rest as splendid as heaven.

7. We need the wrath of God in order to be motivated to care for our impoverished brothers and sisters. “What better impetus for social justice than Jesus’s sober warning that if we fail to care for the least of our brothers we will go away to eternal punishment (Matt. 25:31-46)?”

8. We need God’s wrath in order to be ready for the Lord’s return. “We must keep the lamps full, the wick trimmed, the houses clean, the vineyard tended, the workers busy, the talents invested lest we find ourselves unprepared for the day of reckoning.”

-Kevin DeYoung, in Why We’re Not Emergent (By Two Guys who Should Be), Kevin DeYoung and Ted Kluck, 2008

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