In my previous article I spoke about the Roman Catholic view of the atonement. If you haven’t read it yet, please click here. To summarize Jesus wasn’t literally punished (Isaiah 53), smitten, or stricken on the cross, and God doesn’t ‘experience’ emotions but in particular anger, & wrath. Here is a link to the Roman Catholic article I’ve been quoting from.
To clarify, I agree that God’s emotions aren’t like ours. Our emotions are tainted with sin that is why things like ‘vengeance’ belong to the Lord (Rom 12:19). Even our love is tainted with sin. Even on our best day none of us can Love the Lord thy God with all our heart, soul, and mind perfectly (Mat 22:37). The Bible teaches us that our deeds are as filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6). Contrary to what Rome is trying to tell you, God does experience emotions. We are made in His image and likeness (Gen 1:26).
Growing up Roman Catholic I was taught to fear God. As a Roman Catholic working out our salvation with fear and trembling meant God was mad at us, and we’d better do what He tells us or else burn in hell forever! Even today Roman Catholics still misuse this verse against me to try an assert a works based salvation. I was taught to go to Mary and the Saints as they would help ease God’s Anger. Especially Mary. Now they are preaching that God isn’t even really mad at our sin.
I admit I could be wrong but I never heard of this Roman Catholic concept of God not really being angry before last month. It certainly seems there is definite shift away from this into a more soft “God is all and only Love” direction.
From the article we see the following: Click Here
Protestants will often ask, however, if Catholics do not hold that God the Father poured out the wrath we deserve onto Jesus, then how is God’s wrath satisfied? They will also point to numerous texts in the New Testament referring to God’s wrath, such as John 3:36; Romans 1:18 12:19; and Ephesians 5:6. But the key to understanding is in properly interpreting what Scripture is teaching us.
Anger (wrath) is a passion within human beings. God, however, is immutable and impassible. He does not have feelings as we know them. Nor does He experience passions. God also does not have a temper. And our sins do not provoke revenge in God. God is infinitely perfect, merciful, loving and just in all he does, so we must see what we call His anger in light of this truth.
Let’s take a look at what the author is saying here. He is stating that the key to understanding the interpretation and what Scripture is teaching us is that:
Assertion 1: Anger (wrath) is a passion within human beings
Meaning: God doesn’t really experience wrath or have passion.
Assertion 2: He doesn’t have feelings as we know them.
Meaning: He has something but not wrath or passion.
Assertion 3: He doesn’t ‘experience’ passions.
Meaning: See assertion 1.
Assertion 4: He does not have a temper.
Meaning: When you sin He doesn’t really get angry with us.
Assertion 5: Our sins do not provoke revenge in God.
Meaning: Since He doesn’t experience passions how could God ever be provoked? So when the Lord says “Vengeance is mine” they must posit that He doesn’t really mean this.
For all 5 assertions it seems what the author is essentially saying is when you come to verses that speak of God’s wrath, anger, vengeance don’t interpret them, ignore them because God is love; which amazingly, is an emotion!! I pressed my Roman Catholic friends for weeks on Isaiah 53:5 asking “if the punishment for our peace wasn’t upon Christ then what was upon Him for our peace?” I got nothing other than links to articles, videos, the catechism and a wide array of lengthy explanations as to why I should simply ignore God’s Word.
After all this the author goes on to say:
God is infinitely perfect, merciful, loving and just in all He does.
So the author is essentially saying God doesn’t really experience wrath, anger, vengeance because He doesn’t experience passions of ANY kind and also because…. He is merciful, and loving(emotion). A synonym of love is passion so if He doesn’t experience passions then we should also assume God doesn’t experience love as well.
Ignore anger, wrath, vengeance because mercy and love. What a strange conclusion and contradiction.
I will stop here and point out a few more things. First, no matter what side of the fence you are on I hope we will both agree that there is only one interpretation.
Using the scriptures from the article please honestly answer the following questions:
36 He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” ~ John 3:36
Q: Jesus is speaking of eternal life and that He who believes HAS (past-tense) eternal life. Answer the following questions with your interpretation:
- For those who don’t believe what abides on him if not wrath?
- Do you believe the person who believes HAS eternal life?
- If yes, then why is the first part of the scripture literal and not the second part?
- If no, then why would Jesus even say this in the first place?
18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who [a]suppress the truth in unrighteousness, ~ Romans 1:18
Q: If it’s not literally wrath that is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness then what is it? What is the proper interpretation?
19 Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. ~ Romans 12:19
Q: Answer the following questions about vengeance and wrath:
- If God takes vengeance but not literal vengeance and when s soul ends up in hell suffering for all eternity what do we call this if not vengeance and if not literal wrath?
- If we ask the people in hell would they say they say?
Final Question: In Isaiah 5:25 it says:
Therefore the anger of the Lord is aroused against His people;
He has stretched out His hand against them
And stricken them,
And the hills trembled.
Their carcasses were as refuse in the midst of the streets
1. God sends an army against Judah to conquer them. If we were to ask the people of this time do you think God was literally angry with them and did God literally punish them would they have said no? If so then what would they have called this?
Honestly ask yourselves these questions and pray on them. If God isn’t really angry at our sin then we must throw out every verse where the Lord talks about His anger, wrath, & hatred for sin. If God isn’t really angry at our sin then we have no reason to fear God. The article offers no interpretation of these scriptures at all. You’re being deceived and presented a false view of God.
It is my hope and prayer that your eyes be opened to the truth that Jesus did bear the punishment for our sins, past, present and future, died, defeated death and gives eternal life to all those who believe in His name. God has clearly spoken or He hasn’t. Are you really willing to give up what God has said for the sake of religion? I pray you don’t.
Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. 5 But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed. 6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
7 He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.
8 By oppression[a] and judgment he was taken away. Yet who of his generation protested?
For he was cut off from the land of the living; for the transgression of my people he was punished.[b]
Verse 10: Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer (NIV)
Verse 10: Yet it pleased the Lord to [q]bruise Him; He has put Him to grief. (NKJV)