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Friday, August 25, 2006

Loving the God of both Testaments

The God of Saini is the same as that of Calvary. This is something that I've been thinking about lately (partially because of this awesome Kent Hughes sermon I heard and also because the speaker at Carey this year was amazing and touched on the topic briefly). Now that I think about it, I've heard similar things from both D.A.C. and J-Mac recently. If you don't feel like reading this whole post, skip to the very end for a fantastic quote from David Morris (Carey preacher).

People are often uneasy about trusting a God who allowed and sanctioned so much gore in the Old Testament. Some say, with a philisophical, intelligent, and contemplative air, "well, you see, the God of the Old Testament was a God of wrath and the God of the New Testament is a God of love." Hmmm. Interesting. This next thought I have stolen from J-Mac. Isn't it curious how forgiving God was of his people dispite the inadequacy of their offerings? Neither wrath nor love is the real dilemma in the OT but rather justice. Instead, the question should ask how a just God can allow such wickedness and idolatry to go unpunished and unatoned for. Do you see? In Romans 3, Paul explains that is is because of His divine forebearance that He had passed over former sins and that the foreknowledge of Christ coming temporarily satisfied his wrath. That is love. Would we bear for one another what He daily bears from us?

Don Carson helped me see the other side more clearly, that is, the matter of the God of the NT being a God of love. D.A.C. loves The Revelation to John. He points out the image given by John in Revelation 14:14-20. In short, God sends angels to gather grapes (people) from the vine of the earth and throw them into the winepress of God's wrath. I'll quote vs. 20. And the wine press was trodden outside the city, and blood flowed from the winepress, as high as a horse's bridle, for 1 600 stadia (184 miles, sorry the ESV doesn't give KM and I'm not looking it up).

Don says that in the NT, both God's wrath and his love are 'wratcheted up' in intensity. God's wrath and his love (hesed) travelled perfectly beside eachother for all of history until they collided in the glorious demonstration of grace and judgement that was the cross. Where was God's love and goodness more evident? Yet, when has there ever been more wrath poured out at a single time?

Trying to keep this brief, I'll leave you with the above promised quote.

On Carmel, fire from God came down and consumed the sacrifice.
On Calvary, a Sacrifice came down and consumed the fire of God.

Though we have a holy fear of our great Lord and Creator, the Consuming Fire has no condemnation for us who are IN Christ Jesus.

serve your king


Blogger kerux said...

"Do you see?"


5:32 PM  
Blogger Loco said...

definitely delivered with one awesome post!

10:43 PM  
Blogger Lydia said...

i loved this post, and i would comment more...but i think i have to leave the house where i'm currently doing all my blog stalking.

yay for godparents who let me use their internet.

8:14 PM  

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