A Fearful God

20 Sep

We are cleansed!

11 Who knows the power of Your anger?
For as the fear of You, so is Your wrath. Psalm 90 NKJ

I’m not “getting” something in the syntax here.  It seems to be saying that our fear (reverence) of God is somehow connected to His wrath.  So I’m looking at the amplified, which tends to be my explanatory Bible version:

Who knows the power of Your anger? [Who worthily connects this brevity of life with Your recognition of sin?] And Your wrath, who connects it with the reverent and worshipful fear that is due You?

Thomas Goodwin, who is known as the readable Puritan, has this to say, “You have souls that are able to comprehend vast fears and terrors; they are as extensive in their fears as in their desires, which are stretched beyond what this World or the creatures can afford them, to an infinity. The soul of man is a dark cell, which when it begets fears once, strange and fearful apparitions rise up in it, which far exceed the ordinary proportion of worldly evils (which yet also our fears usually make greater than they prove to be); but here, as to that punishment which is the effect of God’s own immediate wrath, let the soul enlarge itself, says he, and widen its apprehension to the utmost; fear what you can imagine, yet still God’s wrath, and the punishment it inflicts, are not only proportionable, but infinitely exceedingly all you can fear or imagine.”

Some of us have a tendency to think that God winks at sin.  But no, His anger against sin, his wrath, is mammoth.  We reverence his purity which is the impulse behind his wrath.

John Bunyan answers the question, “Who knows the power of your anger” this way:  None at all; and unless the power of that can be known, it must abide as unspeakable as the love of Christ which passeth knowledge.

All of this is cause for great rejoicing, because we were cleansed of sin when we received Christ as our Savior.  Oh, indeed, the love of Christ is limitless when looked at through this lens.  What a miracle that we receive Christ’s righteousness.

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