THE WRATH OF GOD…

I get the question a lot nowadays, “If Jesus took the wrath of God on the cross, how come He brought about the destruction of Jerusalem in 70AD?”

This question seems to be arising from those grappling with the reality of grace as well as stepping into good eschatology (www.Raptureless.com).

There exists some branches of the church that teach that Jesus was the sponge that soaked up all of God’s wrath at the cross thus making us “unpunishable.” Some go further and say that God no longer has any wrath after the cross.

With these questions about Wrath floating around, I decided to go back to my trusty Strong’s Concordance and look up every reference to “Wrath” from Matthew-Jude.

Here is what I have come to understand.

 

There is no indication that God poured out His wrath upon Jesus on the cross.

Jesus was the perfect lamb sacrifice and based upon the system of Old Testament Atonement/Propitiation; the Lamb was never punished with wrath because of the human owner’s sin. The animal merely stood in the place of the owner and shed its blood for the covenant to provide forgiveness. God did not punish God to free us from the wrath of God. Jesus shed His blood to cut a New Covenant with the Father to Forgive our sins and remember them no more. God didn’t make Jesus pay for our sins, Jesus and God created a New Covenant, which forgave us the debt of our sins. (Hebrews 8:6-13)

 

God has wrath before the cross.

The Old Testament has 151 references to the word Wrath, whereas the New Testament has 46. In Matthew 3:7 and Luke 3:7 we find John the Baptist rebuking the Pharisees and speaking of their future destruction in 70AD He says that the axe is already laid to the root and that they won’t be saved by claiming that Abraham is their father. He goes on and says of 70AD, “Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?” Also in Luke 21:23 Jesus speaks of the 70AD massacre of Jerusalem and refers to it as the great distress and the wrath upon the people.

 

God did have wrath after the cross

The death of the Perfect Lamb on the cross has provided us with a New Covenant of forgiveness. The Old Covenant provided Laws which when broken caused the Wrath of God to come upon people. Thus what Romans 4:15 says, “Because the law worketh wrath: for where no law is, there is no transgression.” For those standing inside Christ in the New Covenant, there is absolutely NO wrath, judgment, or anger. Yet for those in the First Century that were not willing to enter into the New Covenant and in fact killed Jesus and persecuted the early church, there was wrath building up against them. “The law worketh wrath…” and the first century Pharisees clung to the law and built wrath up against themselves.

 

They were what Paul called the sons of disobedience

“Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.” Eph 5:6

“For which things’ sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience:” Col. 3:6

1 Thessalonians gives us the clearest clues that the wrath of God was not poured out at the cross upon Jesus but was actually being filled up until the Days of Vengeance (Luke 21:22) when the Lord took His vengeance out on those that killed Him and declared judgment upon their own heads (Matthew 27:25). When God would avenge the early church in 70AD (Romans 12:19).

 

Notice the first century relevance of the following verses:

“Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath.” 1 Thessalonians 1:10b

“For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.” 1 Thessalonians 5:9

“For you, brothers and sisters, became imitators of God’s churches in Judea, which are in Christ Jesus: You suffered from your own people the same things those churches suffered from the Jews who killed the Lord Jesus and the prophets and also drove us out. They displease God and are hostile to everyone in their effort to keep us from speaking to the Gentiles so that they may be saved. In this way they always heap up their sins to the limit. The wrath of God has come upon them at last.” 1 Thessalonians 2:14-16

 

Here is the skinny.

Jesus came as the King in the manger. He demonstrated His kingdom during His ministry. Jesus spoke of the New Covenant at the Last supper and inaugurated it upon the cross thus declaring that the establishment of the New Covenant was now “finished.” The Old Covenant although obsolete and outdated had not yet disappeared according to Hebrews 8:13. Therefore throughout the New Testament you have Jesus the King, His Kingdom has been established and is growing (Matthew 13:31-33) the New Covenant arrived at the cross but the Old Covenant has not disappeared yet.

This leads to those that are sons of disobedience which cling to the law which brings wrath (Rom 4:15), continuing to persecute the first century church until the wrath of God is filled up (1 Thess. 2:14-16) and poured out upon them in 70AD.

Did God still have wrath after the cross? Yes, the cross did nothing about the wrath of God. The wrath of God was connected to the Old Covenant system, which existed and continued until its final destruction in 70AD (Hebrew 8:13).

Why did God judge all those people in 70AD? God judged the Old Covenant and those that clung to the sinking ship drowned with it. Those the turned to the New Covenant of Christ were saved from the Day of Wrath. Josephus records that out of the 1.1 million Jews that were killed in the slaughter of 70AD, not one Christian died.

So to answer the question, does God still have wrath? No, we are under a New Covenant; and the Old Covenant that created wrath has been removed.

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36 Comments

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36 responses to “THE WRATH OF GOD…

  1. Amazing post, I have learned much from you Jonathan. Your writings have forced me to think and re-think many things that I thought I knew. Great blog!

    • Jonathan Welton

      Thanks bro, I really appreciate you too. I just reread your prophecy over me from January, it is soo good!

  2. benjaminpott

    So just to be clear – as long as we believe in Jesus Christ and his saving works – and have invited him into our lives (knowing him as Lord and savior), then the wrath of God is not in operation upon us? (just clarifying)

    • Jonathan Welton

      According to scripture, yes

      • benjaminpott

        Awesome! So regarding Anger, does God still get Angry with us? I would be angry with me. I assume he recognizes when we sin and wants to guide us out of it – is there ever Anger that may be directed towards us? Or is Anger the same thing as Wrath?

      • Jonathan Welton

        God is never angry at His children. I would suggest meditating on the New Covenant of Hebrews 8.

  3. Esther

    THANK YOUUUUUU!!!!!!!!!

  4. Donna Gibbs

    Thanks Jonathan!

  5. What about those who, after accepting Jesus Christ, fall into sin? Aren’t they in danger of the wrath of God?

  6. Kristen Adam

    Thanks Jonathan! I just need one clarification re: Christ on the cross not receiving wrath….the first thing that popped into my head was Isaiah 53 especially when it talks about the punishment that brought us peace was upon him. Didn’t Jesus receive God’s wrath for those of us who believe on Jesus as Messiah, Lord and Savior?

    • Jonathan Welton

      The English translation of the Septuagint seems to clarify the Isaiah 53 passage quite a bit.

      Vs 1. O Lord, who has believed our report? and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? 2 We brought a report as of a child before him; he is as a root in a thirsty land: he has no form nor comeliness; and we saw him, but he had no form nor beauty. 3 But his form was ignoble, and inferior to that of the children of men; he was a man in suffering, and acquainted with the bearing of sickness, for his face is turned from us: he was dishonoured, and not esteemed. 4
      He bears our sins, and is pained for us: yet we accounted him to be in trouble, and in suffering, and in affliction. 5 But he was wounded on account of our sins, and was bruised because of our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and by his bruises we were healed. 6 All we as sheep have gone astray; every one has gone astray in his way; and the Lord gave him up for our sins. 7 And he, because of his affliction, opens not his mouth: he was led as a sheep to the slaughter, and as a lamb before the shearer is dumb, so he opens not his mouth. 8 In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken away from the earth: because of the iniquities of my people he was led to death. 9 And I will give the wicked for his burial, and the rich for his death; for he practised no iniquity, nor craft with his mouth. 10
      The Lord also is pleased to purge him from his stroke. If ye can give an offering for sin, your soul shall see a long-lived seed: 11 the Lord also is pleased to take away from the travail of his soul, to shew him light, and to form him with understanding; to justify the just one who serves many well; and he shall bear their sins. 12 Therefore he shall inherit many, and he shall divide the spoils of the mighty; because his soul was delivered to death: and he was numbered among the transgressors; and he bore the sins of many, and was delivered because of their iniquities.

  7. This is REALLY good!!!! I often times find myself stumbling when I share about the wrath of God. You were able to paint a clear picture of what is already in my spirit and heart. You have a gift of breaking down things for people that is clear. Now if you could write a blog about the difference between wrath and judgement! I find that a large quantity of believers use the word “judgement” when they really mean “wrath” (and indirectly think they are the same thing when they’re not). Would love to hear your own take on it. It seems to be something I’m constantly talking with believers about.

    • Jonathan Welton

      You are right, that is an area of confusion. I should do some research on that. My short answer would be: Wrath is God’s anger. Judgment is God’s justice against evil. God is a good father and a good father does not operate in Judgment out of mere Wrath. In James 1:20 it says that the Wrath of man does not work the righteousness of God.

      • Kristen Adam

        YES! It is a wrath vs. judgement argument. I know God is a loving father and only operates out of love and judgement for the sake of justice. So it was God’s judgement that was on Jesus at the cross – not his wrath?

      • crystal jackel

        Well put!

  8. Albert

    Hi Jonathan,

    You wrote, “God didn’t make Jesus pay for our sins, Jesus and God created a New Covenant, which forgave us the debt of our sins. (Hebrews 8:6-13)” – but don’t we hear the Hymn “Jesus paid it all, all to Him I owe..?” The story of the righteous judge paying for his son’s crime is well received in the church. Someone gotta pay right?

    Also, according to Derek Prince, there was a “Divine EXCHANGE” on the Cross – Jesus never sin, He deserved ALL the Blessings promised in the OT on earth but He received none. He “harvested” ALL the “Fruits” (i.e. curses, rejection by God, sickness, poverty, etc)” of men’s guilt & sins (what we sow) on the Cross – so that we, who believe in Him, inherit/reap ALL the Blessings resulted from His Righteousness (i.e. what Jesus “sow”). This is along the “Seed time and Harvest teaching” of the Word of Faith group.

    Am I too focused on the wording or am I missing something in your sharing?

    Thanks

    Albert
    PS. BTW, do you believe the “100-fold return teaching” by the WoF group (i.e. to “sow” whatever amount to whomever that the Lord lead you to and expect and receive 100 times back in this life). Is it biblical & practical?

    • Jonathan Welton

      Consider the cross in the light of Jesus as the Perfect Lamb sacrifice. The Lamb doesn’t pay the debt of the sinner, the Lamb seals the covenant thus making way for forgiveness.

      • Kristen Adam

        I totally understand what you are saying….but wouldn’t you say that Jesus wasn’t just any perfect lamb sacrifice…..normally a sacrificial lamb isn’t mutilated and mocked and beaten and whipped. Their throats are slit and they feel minimal pain. There must be something more than Jesus being just our sacrificial lamb?

      • Jonathan Welton

        Exactly.
        Jesus wasn’t beaten and punished for sin, He went the extra mile to purchase the benefits package for us.
        By His stripes we are healed
        He was made poor that we might be made rich
        He was put to shame to remove shame from us
        He died on a cursed tree to free us from all curses.

      • Kristen Adam

        ok! I see what you are saying. Thanks for being open to discuss these things. As you can see it can be a little confusing to differentiate between “wrath” vs. “paying for our benefits package”. It seems like such a horrible thing to go through – ‘wrathful’. I really do see your perspective. He was our sin sacrifice and our burnt offering all rolled into one. Thank you King Jesus!!!!!

  9. Toni Bucci

    Wow Jonathon, really clinging to your tutalege while taking in new eschatology! Thankyou for your time to teach so “Truth” can come back to proper place!

  10. Kevin

    Loving the blogs man keep em coming

  11. Jason

    So, are you implying that, when Jerusalem was destroyed, not one Christian was in the city and lost their life?

  12. Sandra

    I am so thankful for your writings that expose the incorrect theology that has been perpetuated upon the Body of Christ and even unbelievers for too long. So many sincere Believers have been given incorrect teaching and are not enjoying the fullness of salvation that our wonderful Lord Jesus Christ purchased for us to live an abundant, long and thriving life! I think you should consider making a movie out of this truth that could be shown in theaters globally so all could truly understand that the LORD really did mean “PEACE ON EARTH, GOODWILL TOWARD MEN”!

  13. judy

    This is very good. Thank you. I hear prophecies about earthquakes splitting the US in two, Hurricane Katrina being a judgement on the US for splitting Israel, that God uses these things to bring judgement and to wake us up? What is the truth with this? I also hear it referred to as wrath. I have been reading the above posts but am having trouble putting this all together. Thanks for your patient reply.

    • Jonathan Welton

      This message you are hearing comes from those operating out of an orphan mindset with a wrong view of who God the Father is. There is no truth to these terrible messages.

      I would suggest reading http://www.Raptureless.com for more perspective. Also keep Romans 8 in mind when a geo-physical disasters occur because it is the earth groaning and waiting for the church to rise up. Not God’s judgment.

  14. judy

    THANK YOU Jonathan! This clears it up. This was the last glitch left from my childhood that taught that God was hanging around with a fly swatter to smack us if we messed up. It took years to drop this, this was the last bug and you very simply helped me to squash it. Thank you again.

  15. Thank you my son for being a student of the WORD & not of people’s teachings. Daddy

  16. Gary Bird

    Hi Jonathan,

    I’ve only been reading your articles, book (raptureless) and watching your videos since you put an article on Phil Drysdales website. I have been very blessed by you and you have started a huge mind set change and you seem to have handed me a new set of lenses (thanks!). You have now initiated me reading through Josephus’ War of the Jews which is both horrific and eye opening but as you say confirms a lot of what Jesus prophesied (I’m not finished reading it yet).

    I know I’m late to the party here (I only just read this post) but what about people who are alive now and don’t know what the Father, Son and Spirit have done for them and aren’t Christians? Is there wrath for them or is it something different? I know there is a coming judgement (whatever that means, I won’t assume wrath) and I’m not a universalist but I’m looking into it and would love your input.

    Thanks

    Gary

  17. josiebraxton2001@yahoo.co.uk

    Hello brother Jonathan, i am Tata Josephine from west Africa. i recently came in-contact with one of our books, The Seer and believe me it revolutionized my life, i later on through your book got your website and will very much want to enroll in your school but not online, there is just alot i am learning from you and believe me it is no guess work, i have to sit under you and i am working towards that. you are my God given mentor and i hold your teachings in high esteem. I can’t wait to see you my brother.

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