The Wrath Of The Lamb
Christians talk a lot about the love of Jesus, the grace of God, the sacrifice of Christ etc. All of the nice sounding positive ideas that God takes action with. If negative things are discussed most often it is about sin or Satan. Satan’s wrath or temptation. But Christians tend to forget the fierceness of God and the danger we are in when we reject Him. The fact that God actually does have hate for certain things. Christians need to be more aware of the wrath of the Lamb.
In my daily Bible reading I am in Revelation again. This time when reading I was stopped at a certain spot. That spot was Revelation 6:16-17 which says,
“And they said to the mountains and to the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of the One seated on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb, because the great day of their wrath has come! And who is able to stand?”
In this verse everyone from high ranking and powerful people to the lowest of the low are all absolutely terrified of God especially the Lamb. The Lamb is none other than Jesus Christ the Son of God who was slain for sinners in order to bring them into salvation through faith. Revelation is a vision from John the last Apostle who was taken to heaven in his spirit (Revelation 1:10) and saw amazing things such as very bizarre angels and people. One of the beings he saw was a slaughtered Lamb that was alive and standing before the throne and in the middle of many angels and elders. This Lamb was the slaughtered Jesus Christ, the once for all sacrifice that imputed the righteousness of Christ onto those who are being saved.
Much positive and warm feelings abound when talking about how much Jesus loves us, but not much in evangelical culture today expresses that absolutely terrifying wrath that that same Lamb is for all who reject His sacrifice. This wrath is scary and will kill all who do not believe when He returns. All who die without Christ are thus given eternal death in hell. The Lamb’s wrath is also a wrath of pure vengeance that will take revenge not only for Himself, but for all Christians who suffered at the hands of evil men especially the martyrs. The Apostle John saw multitudes of people from every tribe and nation standing before God’s throne in white waiting for this Lamb to take revenge for them and destroy all who hate God. This wrath has built up over the course of history and will be displayed in God’s return in Christ, and at God’s judgment. This wrath destroys and kills and sends to hell. This truth should shake people up and give them a healthy fear of the Lord. There will be blood! Unbelievers should be worried about the state of their souls and what God will do to them if they continue in rebellion and refuse to repent. Christians on the other hand, especially in evangelical churches, need to have a healthy fear of the Lord and make sure they are being sanctified by the Holy Spirit lest they find out their salvation was fake and they never truly repented. There should be a serious interest in holiness in personal living. Does it not bring you personal anguish when you fall into sin? If you answer no then you need to check the state of your soul. No Christian can lose Christ or salvation, but those who think they are Christians and have no sanctified life were never saved to begin with and thus will be surprised when Jesus rejects them in the afterlife.
It should be normal for the Christian to feel disappointment, anguish, and also distance from God when they sin. God has not left you, but you rebelled and left God temporarily, yet you are still covered by the Holy Spirit and Christ’s blood. But how do we know we are saved? James 2:13 gives us the answer that “faith without works is dead.” How can you have the Holy Spirit living in you if you do not produce holiness in your life? How can you be saved if you do not grieve over your sins and repent and pursue a life of righteousness and if you are not growing in God’s grace and holiness? R.C. Sproul in his book The Holiness of God states, “The goal of Christian growth is the achievement of righteousness” (p. 203). Living a righteous life is something many Christians do not even care to discuss. Instead they want to talk about spiritual antidotes and practical living to make people feel emotional and positive.
This is a problem as it leaves people in a state where conviction of sin fades away and people never try hard to defeat their sins. Just because someone is saved does not mean we have an easy time being holy, it is the most difficult thing in the world! Christians sin all the time and in some cases, sin in shameful ways they do not want anyone to know about. The true Christian will feel isolated from God in their sin, grievous of their sin, disappointed that they have not honored God the way they ought to, and will come to repent. Christians sin multiple times even, yet we must embrace the cross and trust that our faith gives us “bold access” to God’s throne (Hebrews 4:13) and we should “expect mercy” from God (Jude 1:21). But, making sure we are actually saved by seeing in ourselves a sanctified life that continually grows into better holiness during a person’s entire life is how the Christian can know they are saved. Knowing that you are not going to be consumed by the wrath of the Lamb like the godless people who do not put their faith in Christ is relief only found in people who are being sanctified. We should have fear of God to honor Him in all reverence and fight sins, but not fear Him like He is an enemy about to smack us where it hurts the most.
Fighting sin is not easy for a Christian but it is possible to deny it and it is our duty. I am guilty of countless sins and some are pretty bad. There are times I have gone back to the same sin multiple times. Sometimes I feel I could never stop the sins but over time the effects of the Holy Spirit’s sanctification kicks in again helps me, it only stops when I give into temptation. Sanctification does not stop, but feeling the effects and being strong does when I give into sinning. It is a continual war that will always happen in the Christian’s life. 1 peter 2:11 requests that Christians “abstain from fleshly desires that war against the flesh.” Our flesh has desires for all kinds of evil. Some of our desires are a gift from God yet we abuse them. We abuse God’s gift of sex by committing lust, and this mindset of lust or sexual immorality only damages our spirit and our mind for working in God’s kingdom. The Bible says Christians have the “mind of Christ” but when we lust or hate or envy we are not using the mind of Christ but thinking with our flesh.
Yes, God is terrifying and sometimes we feel crushed by God, but it is only to get us back on track in order to prove we are sealed by Christ because of the sanctification through God’s discipline that reprimands us, and shakes us up, and hurts only for an instant in order to give us a joy that may be complete. God is dangerous, God will kill, God will send to hell. Jesus Christ, the Lamb has wrath and He will pour it out and take vengeance on sin and we need to be prepared for it. Isaiah 65:15 states that “the Lord God will kill you.”
All of the self denial, and the proper stance for God that we take brings ridicule from godless people who Hate Christ. In some countries it is so bad people are killed because of the gospel. Do we have have enough spiritual strength to stand for Jesus, live an non-hypocritical life, embrace righteous living, and deny our flesh and spread the gospel? We must! We have the strength through God’s Spirit. If you struggle in sins repent and come back to God. Embrace conviction and find relief. Deny conviction and never be satisfied. Sin is pleasure, yet happiness is not always pleasure. The pleasure does not have lasting satisfaction and leaves a person empty and alone. Happiness can have pleasure, but not always does pleasure mean you are happy. Yet sinful pleasure never brings happiness, but only the wrath of the Lamb.