Doing Justice, Preaching Wrath

Scripture: Jonah 3:1-10


The Word “Wrath”

It is clear that when we think of the word “wrath” as applicable to God, it must be divested of everything that is like human passion, and especially the passion of revenge. It is one of the most obvious rules of interpretation that we are not to apply to God passions and feelings which, among us, have their origin in evil. [God’s wrath] is the opposition of the divine character against sin; and the determination of the divine mind to express that opposition in a proper way, by excluding the offender from the favors which He bestows on the righteous.

We admire the character of a father who is opposed to disorder, vice, and disobedience in his family, and who expresses his opposition in a proper way. We admire the character of a ruler who is opposed to all crime in the community, and who expresses those feelings in the law. Why shall we not be equally pleased with God, who is opposed to all crime in all parts of the universe, and who determines to express His opposition in the proper way for the sake of preserving order and promoting peace?

– Albert Barnes


Repent means “turn away from”

Doing Justice

Psalm 89:14
Romans 3:23-24
Zechariah 7:10

God calls us to do justice.

Preaching Wrath

It is unloving to carry out social justice without telling people about their sin, God’s judgment and salvation.

James 2:14-17

“to work against social injustice and to call people to repentance before God interlock theologically.”
– Tim Keller

Take Homes

Have you repented of your sins and accepted God’s offer of salvation through His son Jesus Christ? He is the only way to be saved. The only way to escape judgement. The only way to peace with God. The only way to live your life the way it was designed to be lived. Come talk to me.

Maybe you repented of your sins a long time ago, and changed some of your behavior, but like the people of Nineveh you never started following Jesus. You are not living your life as his disciple. Come talk to me.

Are you a Christian who thinks the hurting sinners of this world are getting just what they deserve? Is your compassion for the broken and lost lacking because you have forgotten that all your righteousness if from Jesus? Are you afraid that showing kindness to sinners is a waste of time and energy? Conviction of sin is the work of the Holy Spirit. Being the hands and feet of Jesus here on earth is our work.

We need to do justice and preach wrath. We need to show God’s love and mercy and tell the truth about sin and judgment. It’s not one or the other. It’s both!