Greg Strand is EFCA executive director of theology and credentialing, and he serves on the Board of Ministerial Standing as well as the Spiritual Heritage Committee. He and his family are members of Northfield (Minnesota) EFC.
God is love. If there is anything believed about God, it is that He is love. The problem is that often this is believed to be the only attribute of God. This is true of most unbelievers, at least for those who remain theists, or “believing unbelievers,” viz. they believe there is a God, they just don’t believe in Him. This was reflective of many in the day that preceded our present day, the day in which the truths of Christianity influenced and affected culture. This is different from “atheistic unbelievers,” as they don’t believe there even is a God. In our postmodern, postChristian day, many fall into the latter category.
What is happening today is that this is also the belief of many believers. God is love, which means He can’t be holy or just, and He can’t punish sin and sinners with eternal conscious punishment because it is inconsistent with love. This has huge implications for most of the central doctrines of the Christian faith!
D. A. Carson was interviewed about this shift, and specifically about the wrath of God. Being faithful to the Scriptures, he affirms the love of God and the holiness of God that personally responds to sin, defiance and rebellion of unbelieving sinners with condemnation and eternal conscious punishment. But you will also hear him make an important distinction between the way we talk about the love of God and the way we talk about the wrath of God. They are not exactly symmetrical, and Carson explains why.
In this 12 minute interview “on the wrath of God,” Carson not only explains the biblical teaching on the wrath of God, but he also gives insights into how to speak of this essential and vital and difficult truth.