This post accompanies the sermon on Colossians 3:5-11 on 4/6/14.
In the sermon this week we talked a little bit about God's wrath and how love demands anger in certain circumstances. In particular we said:
The more you love someone they angrier you get when someone hurts them or when they hurt themselves.
But the concept of the wrath of God in the Bible goes beyond what we might normally think of as "end of life accountability" and intrudes into our present existence. The Bible teaches that people can "receive in themselves the due penalty for sin." In other words, God gives people over to experience the painful consequences of sin in order that they may learn to turn away from it.
While it may be incredibly unpopular to say, STI's are one example of this phenomenon. They are so prevalent in our culture that we cannot imagine a world without them. However, if you pause for a moment and imagine a world in which everyone follows the biblical teaching on sexuality they would be virtually non-existent. This is not to say that STI's are God's specific punishment on people who are immoral, or that everyone who has an STI is an immoral person (of course not). But it is to say that God permits the effects of sinful behavior to be felt by people who engage in it so as to learn the foolishness of sin.
It is in this way, and others, that the wrath of God is experienced in the here-and-now in a way which is intended to help people turn from sin and turn to Christ.