Are you afraid of God’s judgment or punishment? You do not have to be scared of God’s wrath. He desires to show you His love and mercy, not His wrath. Many believers and unbelievers alike fear that God is an angry entity waiting to strike them down at the first mess up, failure or mistake. This, however, is far from the truth.
So what is the truth? God desires to pour out His mercy on all people. He gave His own Son to pay the price that fair justice requires. Jesus took the punishment we deserved, to pay the penalty for our sins as required by His justice. Father God gave His Son because He does not want to anyone to experience His wrath due to sin. That said, we must meet a condition to receive that mercy, and the good news is, you do not have to be afraid of God’s judgment if you’ve met it!
The condition we must meet is:
- Recognize that we have sinned/done wrong—we have sinned in thought, word and action at some point.
- Accept the price and punishment for our sins that Jesus paid for us. The Son of God paid the price for our sins, satisfying the requirement of justice. So we must come to accept His payment for our sins.
- Believe on Jesus as our Savior and the only one who could save us from our sins and the punishment they bring.
- Repent of those sins, choosing now to let Jesus lead our lives, setting Him in place as the leader or Lord of our lives in thought, word and deed rather than ourselves, sin, the world, satan, etc.
God’s Rich Mercy and Love for Us
Referring to Ephesians 2:4, commentator David Guzik writes: “We might imagine a God of rich mercy and great love who did not focus that mercy and love upon us. But behind the good news of God’s salvation offered in Jesus is the fact that this mercy and love is extended to us.”
Ephesians 2:1-9 is a must read for those who feel afraid of God‘s judgment:
“…you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the ]course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.” (NASB)
Real Life Example
Say you have dinner with a friend and they offer to pay for your meal as a blessing to you. When the server comes with the check, you both find it was split into two. Your friend—still wanting to pay—holds out there hand to you with enough money to pay your check. But then, you refuse to take it. Since you did not accept your friend’s payment for your meal, you would have to pay.
It is the same way in receiving salvation. If we do not receive the free gift of salvation from God, then the payment does not count toward our “bill” and we have to pay for it ourselves. Because of God’s justice, we would face judgment and experience the punishment required for our wrongs. He loves us so much to make the way for us not to have to experience His judgment when we have repented and come to Christ!
This had to be, not because God is unloving but quite the opposite: Because He is both a God of love and of justice, He cannot just let evil remain unpunished. Likewise, none of us are good enough or able to say we’ve never done wrong, so we need saving.
God’s Son took the judgment and wrath meant for us. Though we deserved God’s judgment, He has given us His love and mercy.
He loves us so much and we don’t have to be afraid of His judgment if we accept the conditions. We simply have to “sign the papers.” This first means recognizing our need for a Savior because of our own sins. We then repent of them, and accept the price Jesus paid for our sins. Now, that is love!
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