Summary: God hates evil and has every right to be angry with our sin, this sermon shows what God wants to do rather than punish that sin.
“God’s Gracious Anger”
Can you imagine what it would be like for the Apostle Paul to go on one of those daytime smut talk shows? Most of you have seen the topics they have shows on. I have heard them advertise a show titled My step dad slept with my sister. They have all sorts of strange topics like that.
The most disgusting thing about it is how the audience supports the most putrid and vial activities of people in the name of personal freedom. If you have any knowledge of the scripture at all you know that freedom has nothing to do with the evil things men and women do to them selves and to each other in our country today.
Try and imagine that Paul was asked on as a guest to offer a rebuttal to some of the evil things you hear about on some of these shows. I would imagine he would come in calm and collected, with a Holy Spirit filled heart, full of confidence in what is right. However, his confidence would never lend itself to arrogance but rather to concern and disgust over the evil that was being talked about.
When asked to tell how he feels about the way the people were living, I expect Paul would say, “It is not how I feel that matters. It is how God feels.” He would go on to say, “Evil angers God because evil destroys his children. What these people are doing is evil.”
To that the crowd would surely hoot and haler in disapproval. One of the other guests might accuse Paul of being out of touch with reality. To that Paul would respond, “Out of touch, no, out of place, yes. You see, God does not sit by silently and watch his children indulge in perversion. He lets us go our sinful way and reap the consequences.”
“Every broken heart, every unwanted child, every war and tragedy can be traced back to our rebellion against God.” After saying that you would imagine the place would erupt in shouting and cursing as the host called for commercial break. The words of Romans chapter one, shout God’s hatred of evil today.
I. God hates evil!
A. Verse 18 speaks of the wrath of God against evil. For many this is a revelation. They think of God as the “man up stairs” or as some old grey haired fellow who is blind to the evil of his children. Still others think of God as too loving and kind to ever be angry enough to bring his wrath on our sins.
B. God is holy and holiness is the moral condition necessary to the health of the universe. Whatever is holy is healthy. The holiness of God, the wrath of God, and the health of creation are inseparably united. God’s wrath is his utter intolerance of whatever degrades and destroys. Just like the mother hates the disease that would take her child’s life, God hates the evil that would take our souls.
II. The fact is, God has every right to be angry and to point out our fault.
A. Most people tend to confuse the wrath of God with the wrath of man.
1. Human anger is typically self-driven and prone to outbursts of temper and violent deeds.
2. God gets angry because disobedience always results in self-destruction.
3. The angry response of God is not directly the result of our hurting him but to our hurting ourselves. What kind of Father sits by and watches his child hurt themselves without doing something about it?
B. Folks, mark it down and don’t ever be fooled into thinking that God does not hate the sins we commit. He is not content as we are to say, “oh, their only human, and they are going to sin.” God is holy and our sins disgust him. According to Hab. 1:13, “God’s eyes are to good to look at evil, he cannot stand to see those who do wrong.”
C. What is our typical response to a person God is using to point out our sin. We get angry at them.
Its like the preacher who had just concluded a hot and scathing sermon on the sin of swearing. He had stated several times that he knew that one of his members was guilty. The service ended. The worshipers one by one filed out of the door.
The first one to go was a woman never suspected of using foul language. With a red and angry face she exclaimed, “I will never darken this door again.”
Before the pastor could recover another said, “Well brother, if I had known you were listening last week, I would have been more careful with my language.”
A third said, ”I think you might at least have come to me privately about it, rather than telling it to the whole church.”