Let me tell you a Story about the Creator of Heaven & Earth; He once upon a time chose a certain group of people out of all the nations & made them holy unto Himself! This special people were just like any other, they were doing whatever they felt they had to do for their survival & like all the other groups of people in the land, they carried with them their idols, false gods that they superstitiously thought helped & blessed them in their endeavors. Little did they know that the rain fell on the just & the unjust alike: their blessings & their cursings were showered upon them, not by the false gods they worshiped, but by the Living God, the Creator of Heaven & Earth!
Though this chosen people was nothing special & certainly not very holy in the modern sense of the word, the Creator chose these people out of all the kindreds of the earth to spread the Good News of His Kingdom! This Kingdom would not be an empire, per se, like all the nations around them; no, this Kingdom was to be one of the heart, mind, soul & strength! When His special people asked for a king like the nations around them, thus rejecting the Living God as their King, the Creator God gave them what they asked for, but this then unleashed the Wrath of God on the generations to come!
As time went by, though these special, holy people were graced by a number of good kings, those who sought the Kingdom of their Heavenly Father, most of their kings led them further & further into debauchery, idolatry & yes, adultery! In the fulness of time, after many generations of their Creator both accusing & excusing them, the Creator of Heaven & Earth, the Living God, finally, once for all, took matters into His own hands &embodied in the same flesh as those He had previously created, came to Earth & showed these special, holy people what it truly meant to love!
Through the Wrath of the Creator of Heaven & Earth bled forth the Redemption of His Son, most of whom had failed to faithfully represent Him! Through Fulfillment of the Law of the Creator, this Son appeased the Wrath of His Father & brought about the salvation of untold generations. The Father's Righteous Indignation, like any father's would be, was directed toward His children, that special people He had chosen & set apart ( made holy ) for Himself. As a Father, He has not changed, but thankfully, His People have; when His Son took upon Himself the guilt that these special, holy people bore, He changed the whole Landscape of Redemption, bringing salvation, not just to those special ones ( at least those who received His atonement ), but to all who actively trusted in Him for their redemption!
There are some today who question the Wrath of God; 'does it still exist?', 'does He still get angry at the wicked every day?' Since the Judgement of those Special People was fulfilled in the first century ( AD ), thus defeating Death ( separational ) forever, is His Wrath still brought to bear on His errant children? Well, as the Father of all & like any father, yes; His wrath is still brought to bear on His children! He is not petty, as some fathers are, demanding the love & obedience of His children, 'or else!', but He is angered by the willful disobedience & hatred of His creatures! How He chooses to release that anger or wrath looks different to different people, but it is a Righteous Indignation, not a petty wrath or anger because somebody stepped on His toes or failed to give Him the respect He deserves!
Much like His chosen people, His children today often choose to disobey His House Rules! Though sometimes His Wrath is not always immediate, we can be sure that our sins will find us out. We reap what we sow & when we live in disobedience to the House Rules, we may be sure that, sooner or later, no matter how strong the wall we've built, it's going to come crashing down on us! Is this the Wrath of God Revealed from Heaven? In the greatest sense yes, but in actuality, it's simply reaping what we have sown!
Those special people that the Creator God chose for Himself were subjected to the Flame of His Wrath! When final Judgement came upon them, their was a Remnant, a Chosen Few who escaped or came through those flames & were made stronger because of that experience; others did not survive His Wrath, but experienced Final Death, Eternal Separation from the Creator. The Wrath of God came to rest, in the first century, on His Chosen People, those through whom He had chosen to reveal His Presence to His Creation!
This is an old, old Story & though its exclusiveness came to an end in the first century, the Story continues & is now inclusive of His entire Creation! As children, there are many who still refuse to obey the House Rules & to pursue a blessed Relationship with their Heavenly Father, but things, as far as wrath stands, are a bit different now! Rather than giving us a Law written in Stone, we have His Spirit to help us live a Blessed Life. Rather than suffering His wrath when we fail to follow a written code, we have been blessed with His Presence! Those who worship false gods still receive the penalty due them, not so much because they have broken the House Rules, but because when a false god comes tumbling down, which it eventually will, it tends to cruse those who are kneeling at its feet!
Charles Haddon Shank