Prayer - Mediating Between Wrath and Mercy



God is love – that is as aspect of His essence. And yet, that authentic and active love necessitates a cure for man’s sin. Wrath is God’s response. And while there is no restraint to His love, there is an abiding restraint on His judgments. And yet the two are bound together. Those who deny God the dimension of anger, but allow compassion, embrace a contradiction. God’s tender mercy toward a victim of sin is logically connected to His anger against the thing that created the condition. Compassion and indifference can’t coexist. He is neither cold and aloof nor dispassionate and disconnected. “He is touched with the feeling of our infirmities” (Hebrews 4:15). He is not merely merciful with regard to our condition; He is merciful with regard to our experience. He does not see us and respond, thus giving us the benefit of His mercy as an indifferent and dispassionate act; rather, He feels our pain. This is the essence of the incarnation. God has walked in our moccasins. He has wept among us and He now weeps with us. He tasted death. And yet, while theologians are ready to admit God’s compassion as an “effectus, but not an affectus,” they persist in a view of that disallows the same for His anger.

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