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Is God Angry at Me?

by Danette Tucker

Does God get angry when we sin? Many Christians believe God does get angry when we sin. There are verses in the Old Testament describing God's wrath unleashed toward His people for their sin. Since God cannot change we can logically believe He gets angry with us when we sin.

However, considering the whole of Scripture, there is more to the issue. The Word says, "For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God" (Col. 3:3). Romans 6:3-11 expounds on this. When we accept Christ as our Savior we die with Him and are raised with Him to live as new creatures in Him. Heb. 8:12 specifically states that under the new covenant God will no longer remember our sins (see also II Cor. 5:17-21, Rom. 4:8, 22-25).

If God cannot remember our sin and our lives are hidden with Christ, how can God be angry with us for sin? If God could be angry with us for sin or punish us for sin after we are believers He would be saying Christ's sacrifice was not enough! But Christ's sacrifice was payment in full of the penalty for all sin--past, present, and future.

But what about the fact that the Word says God disciplines us as His children? Often our understanding of discipline is punitive. We do something wrong therefore we must be punished so we won't do it again. But the word discipline simply means training and carries no punitive meaning. Discipline does not inherently include either anger or punishment.

God sees the perfection of Christ when He looks at us. God's motive for our redemption was to restore relationship with us--to reconcile us to Him (II Cor. 5:17-21). When we accept Christ as our Savior we are perfected in Christ spiritually. However, we still have sin habits and ways in which we do not understand God that hinder us from relating freely and fully to God. Therefore, part of the Holy Spirit's role in our lives is to sanctify us--discipline us--by exposing to us areas of mis-belief and teaching us the truth. There is no anger or punishment involved in this process. In fact, Scripture specifically states that it is the goodness of God that leads us to repentance, not His wrath! (Rom. 2:4) God's discipline is simply training.

The way God usually disciplines us is through our circumstances. He allows our circumstances to "fall apart" so they will expose to us our areas of sin or wrong belief about God and we will be motivated to seek the truth. He doesn't do this because He is angry. He allows natural events and/or consequences so that we will turn to Him for answers and become conformed to the image of Christ.

So, is there still a place for God's wrath? After all, even the New Testament talks about God's wrath. The answer is yes. But His wrath is only directed toward those who reject Christ (Jn. 3:36).

Understanding this basic principle about how God views His children has a radical impact on how we live our daily lives. It changes the way we view God and our circumstances. It alters the way we view and relate to others who are in sin. And it revolutionizes the way we parent our children.

Copyright 2003

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Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.

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