Re: Verse reading–Revelation 15 and 16 (day six)
“…and they would not repent and give Him glory.” Revelation 16:9
John records this twice, once in verse nine and again in verse 11. We’ve read it before, but it is no less unnerving. How can anyone facing the reality of God along with his wrath remain unrepentant? It certainly reminds us of 2 Thessalonians 2:9-11, “…they found no place in their hearts for the truth so as to be saved. Consequently, God sends them a deluding influence so that they will believe what is false. And so all of them who have not believed the truth but have delighted in evil will be condemned.” They are unable to repent because God rewarded their unbelief with further delusion.
It is a frightful thing, but that is not what I want us to contemplate today. On the Day of the Lord, the Day of Wrath, will we rejoice in the destruction of the wicked or lament? Should we rejoice? I do not think we will delight in the destruction of the wicked, but rather rejoice in the glory of God’s holiness as it stands against them. After all even God, “does not delight in the destruction of the wicked.” On that day the glorious holiness of God will take vengeance against the unrighteous over all the earth, and we will rejoice in the full display of His glory. Paul alludes to the reality in Romans 9:22, “what if God, willing to demonstrate his wrath and make known his power, has endured with much patience the objects of wrath prepared for destruction?”
On that day, we will not wonder if God is too harsh, or whether or not we should rejoice. No, we will glory in the justice and power of God!
Re:Verse reading–Romans 2:1-29 (day seven)
“A man is a Jew if he is one inwardly. . .by the Spirit.”–v 29. In Romans 1, Paul declares the wrath of God against those who REJECT Him. Pagans/Gentiles. Jewish listeners said “Amen” to the first part. In Roman 2, Paul declares the wrath of God against those who try to satisfy Him with RELIGION.
Surprised? Being good is not good enough. God’s demand is not that we go to church or read our Bibles or try to be inclusive. No. God’s demand (something known only by revelation) is that we, “by perseverance in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality”–v 7.
But, who does that? Do you know ANYONE who steadily, courageously, at all times, in all circumstances seeks God’s will? As the Bible says, we fall short of God’s glory. Way short.
So, God provides a way. A new life, Spirit-born. It is the ONLY thing that is enough. Being good just isn’t.
Re:Verse reading–Romans 2:1-29 (day one)
“To every man according to his deeds.”–v 6 (see also Psalm 62:12) In Romans 2, Paul makes startling statements. God will judge all men. . .based on their deeds. . . based on the light (truth) they had.
No works-theology here. Just unapologetic connection of faith and the works that rise from repentance. On that coming day, God will need no other evidence. “To those who by perseverance. . .seek for glory and honor. . .eternal life.” “To those who are self-seeking. . . wrath and indignation.”–v 8-9. Clear enough?
God will also judge us based on the light (truth) we had. Those without the law will be judged without reference to it. God is not unfair. He holds no man accountable for things he never heard. Those with the Law will answer to an even a higher standard.
“Little children, let us love in deed and in truth”—1 John 3:18. On the last day, God will use both categories to judge us.
Re:Verse reading–Romans 1:18-32 (day six)
The central theme to our rev:verse text is not primarily the wrath of God, nor is it the sinfulness of man, but rather it is the Glory of God. Proverbs 4:23 says, “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of life.” The great “unrighteousness” that Paul writes about is the sin of the unguarded heart; we gave our heart to another. We were made in the image of God, designed to behold, enjoy, and find purpose in the Glory of God, and yet we did not. We did not “honor him, or give him thanks.” The results are self-evident, just turn on the news. Once we chose to worship creature over creator, all hell broke lose. The affections of our hearts have “determined the course of [our] lives”
Our hearts need realigning. “Oh, what wretched people we are! Who will free us from lives of sin and death? Thank God the answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord!” Romans 7:24-25