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January 24 – God is wrathful

God is jealous, and the Lord avenges; The Lord avenges and is furious. The Lord will take vengeance on His adversaries, And He reserves wrath for His enemies; The LORD is slow to anger and great in power and will not at all acquit the wicked. – Nahum 1:2-3a

Scripture reading: Nahum 1

God’s love for His people as well as His holy hatred and revulsion for sin, together with His righteous desire for justice, requires that the Lord will punish all evil and evildoers. Though God is slow to anger, all the wicked, unbelievers and unrepentant sinners will be punished. None will escape His wrath. It is reserved and stored up for His enemies.

Nahum prophesied against Nineveh, years after Jonah saw them repent. They had returned right back to their violent sins and immoral wickedness. When we look around at world powers and governments promoting wickedness, we see similar things. Though God still patiently allows much evil, one day His wrath over sin will be poured out. Our comfort is that He will punish all evil at a global scale for everyone who ever lived.

Eternal shame, reproach and wrath will be heaped upon those who have not seriously sought to escape His wrath by fleeing to and trusting in Jesus Christ. Micah asks, “Who can endure the fierceness of His anger?” (vs. 6). Obviously none!

Please let the consequences of God’s wrath sink in for a moment – eternal damnation. Knowing this, would anyone want anyone else to endure God’s eternal wrath? Shouldn’t our feet skip over the mountains of impossibilities to bring the good tidings of the Gospel, proclaiming peace through Jesus Christ? (vs. 15). Paul allowed the wrath of God, together with Christ’s love to motivate him in evangelism (cf. 2 Corinthians 5:10-14).

Suggestions for prayer

Pray that the Lord would give us a burden for souls who are not saved. When we feel intimidated by evangelism, pray for boldness and opportunities to reach the lost and God’s empowering Holy Spirit to lead and guide you.

Rev. Pieter van der Hoek has been serving the Heritage Reformed Church of Burgessville since 2017. This daily devotional is also available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional.

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