Pondering Extras on Romans 1:18-23
From a message John MacArthur preached June 7, 1981 on the The Wrath of God…
I believe the greatest demonstration of the wrath of God ever given was given on Calvary’s cross. God hates so deeply sin that He actually allowed His own Son to be put to death. The greatest manifestation of the wrath of God. He poured out His fury on His own beloved Son. He would not hold it back even from His own Son. That’s how He hated sin.
Jeffrey Wilson, the British commentator, writes: “God is no idle spectator of world events, He is dynamically active in human affairs, the conviction of sin is constantly punctuated by divine judgment.”
And the judgment on the cross sums up the world’s history. So, what is the time of the wrath of God? It’s constantly being revealed, all the time, all the time. Every time you turn around you see it. People live and die. Nations rise and fall. God judges sin.
You say to yourself as I said to myself about this point in my study – Now, wait a minute, there are some people who seem to kind of prosper in spite of this, right? There are some wicked people who seem to do so well and you ask yourself the question How can they live and get away with it? I mean, why does God let them live such wretched, dissolute, vile, sinful lives? Well, don’t forget Psalm 9:16 says: “The Lord is known by the judgment which He executed.” It will come. If God lets men prosper for a while in their sin, His bowl of wrath is just all the while filling up. If He lets them sin for a while it’s just that He’s sharpening the sword. The longer God pulls back the bow, the deeper the arrow plunges when He releases it. Judgment will come.
The story goes that the godly farmers in a western community were greatly shocked onesummer Sunday morning when they drove to the little church in the country. They found the man who owned the forty acres across from the church was in the middle of plowing his field, turning thefurrows. And he’ had been doing it all day and ignored the fact that it was the Lord’s Day. The people went on into the church and all the while they were in church they could hear the noise of all of his tractors. And so they were deeply concerned. He had worked all his other fields and purposely chosen to work the one by the church on Sunday to prove a point. He wrote a letter to the editor of a local paper, and pointed out that he had done all this on Sunday and yet he had the highest yield per acre of any farm in the county. And he asked the editor how the Christians could explain this. He didn’t feel God was involved at all.
The editor with great common sense printed the letter and followed it with this simple statement. “God does not settle all His accounts in the month of October.”