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Wrath Redefined

Wrath Redefined

Postby mattrose » Mon Jun 20, 2016 8:52 am

A sermon I preached turned into a little article and was published on a website of a friend of a friend.

If anyone's interested in it (or the other articles on the site), here's a link
http://www.foundrypulpit.com/blog/wrath-redefined
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Re: Wrath Redefined

Postby jasonmodar » Tue Jun 21, 2016 11:46 am

Hi Matt,

Thanks for sharing this. It's a perspective on God's wrath that I've never come across before. It will give me something to chew on and look into more deeply. It's a teaching that I really want to be true. Since that's the case, I'll have to scrutinize it even more than I normally would. :D

BTW, are the Wesleyan and Nazarene denominations closely affiliated? I ask because I go to a Nazarene church and Nazarenes are Wesleyan in their theology.

Take care,

Jason
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Re: Wrath Redefined

Postby TK » Tue Jun 21, 2016 12:27 pm

The only problem is that if you take it just "one step further" you will see that it is still God who set up the "system."

In other words, we can say that people send themselves to hell, but who made hell?
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Re: Wrath Redefined

Postby mattrose » Tue Jun 21, 2016 4:51 pm

jasonmodar wrote:Hi Matt,

Thanks for sharing this. It's a perspective on God's wrath that I've never come across before. It will give me something to chew on and look into more deeply. It's a teaching that I really want to be true. Since that's the case, I'll have to scrutinize it even more than I normally would. :D

BTW, are the Wesleyan and Nazarene denominations closely affiliated? I ask because I go to a Nazarene church and Nazarenes are Wesleyan in their theology.

Take care,

Jason


Yes, Wesleyans and Nazarene's are practically identical in theology. They would both be considered holiness churches with some connection to the methodist movement and pentecostalism (minus the tongues speaking).
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Re: Wrath Redefined

Postby mattrose » Tue Jun 21, 2016 5:01 pm

TK wrote:The only problem is that if you take it just "one step further" you will see that it is still God who set up the "system."

In other words, we can say that people send themselves to hell, but who made hell?


God set up a world in which love was possible. That is the system.

I don't think of hell as a place God made when the universe was created. Certainly it wasn't a 'place' God intended human beings to end up.

The eternal fire is, to my mind, a metaphor. It is a way of saying that evil will be consumed once and for all. It is not so much a literal place as it is the absence of place. It is what happens to people when they are disconnected from the source of life. It is the end of life.

It had to be possible (for love to be possible) for people to choose to be disconnected from God. The state is disconnection is not part of the system. It is the opting out of the system.
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Re: Wrath Redefined

Postby TK » Wed Jun 22, 2016 7:27 am

I fully (I think) understand your premise and I do (think) I agree with it.

It does sound much better to say that people choose to opt out, and therefore they "choose" the consequence as well.

Where I am getting hung up a tad is that it is still God who made that decision (those who opt out choose the consequence I have ordained).

Don't get me wrong- I don't "fault" God for this because He is God, after all.
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Re: Wrath Redefined

Postby Paidion » Wed Jun 22, 2016 5:17 pm

TK, you may find it informative to become aware of the Orthodox View of hell.
Briefly it is this:

1. Our God is a consuming fire. (Hebrews 12:29)
2. Those who love God will experience this fire (God Himself) as infinite joy, that is, heaven.
3. Those who do not love God, who have not included Him in their lives, will experience Him as pain, that is, hell.

So God Himself is both heaven and hell. We choose how we will experience Him.

You may want to check out this Orthodox website:

Orthodox Church of America
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Man judges a person by his past deeds, and administers penalties for his wrongdoing. God judges a person by his present character, and disciplines him that he may become righteous.

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Re: Wrath Redefined

Postby mattrose » Wed Jun 22, 2016 5:39 pm

TK wrote:Where I am getting hung up a tad is that it is still God who made that decision (those who opt out choose the consequence I have ordained).


I think the only difference between us is that I don't see God as choosing the consequence so much as I see the consequence as a logical reality.

I think there's an important distinction there, personally.

In Genesis 1:3, God made light. Without getting into a debate about Isaiah 45:7, let's just say that God made light and not darkness. Darkness is just the absence of light. We don't have to imagine God having ever created it. If you turn off all the lights in a room, you get darkness. If you continually reject the source of life, you get death. God didn't set up death so much as it is the logical result of rejecting life. As I said in the article, the warning wasn't "If you eat of it, I'll kill you"... it was, "if you eat of it, you'll die." The statement "you'll die" needn't be God alerting them to a consequence He purposefully put into place. It could just be God stating a matter of fact.
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Re: Wrath Redefined

Postby TK » Thu Jun 23, 2016 8:04 pm

Matt-

I like your light analogy- I can run with that.
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Re: Wrath Redefined

Postby jasonmodar » Thu Jun 23, 2016 8:44 pm

Hi Matt,

Without getting into a debate about Isaiah 45:7


I'm not interested in a debate either, but I am curious how'd you respond to this verse given your premise? If I were to give an off the cuff stab I'd say that Yahweh is using evocative, poetic language to emphasize that He is the one acting even though Cyrus will be seen as the one acting. This is opposed to Yahweh giving an exposition of how he is the creator of darkness and calamity. I'll freely admit I'm out of my element here as I haven't done much in depth study into Isaiah.
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