"The day of wrath..."
Text: Romans 2:5
THE DAY OF WRATH
This phrase should have been a very familiar one to the Jews. Many of the prophets had preached on this theme. Let us look at some of these prophetic utterances in the writings of the ancient prophets. The familiar expression was “The day of the LORD”, Two prophetic writings may be cited:-
“Behold, the day of the LORD comes,
Cruel, with both wrath and fierce anger,
To lay the land desolate;
And He will destroy its sinners from it.”
“The great day of the LORD is near;
It is near and hastens quickly;
The noise of the day of the LORD is bitter;
There the mighty men shall cry out.
That day is a day of wrath.
A day of trouble and distress,
A day of devastation and desolation,
A day of darkness and gloominess,
A day of clouds and thick darkness.”
The day of wrath and judgment fell on Jerusalem in 586 BC, when the Babylonians invaded and laid waste the kingdom of Judah. Then followed 70 years of exile! Hundreds of years had passed since the Jews were allowed to return to their homeland. What had they learned about the wrath of God through all their suffering?
ANOTHER DAY OF WRATH
Paul had to write urgently to warn that another fearful day of wrath was coming, if they did not repent and return to the Lord.
“But in accordance with your hardness and your impenitent
heart you are treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath
and revelation of the righteous judgment of God.”
1. Strong words of rebuke
Paul used very firm and candid words, as did the prophets of old. His words were “hardness and (your) impenitent.” (Cf. Isaiah 5: 21-25; Jeremiah 6:28; 7:14)
2. Stern reminder of the day of wrath and revelation
With great firmness, Paul reminded that the wrath of God would fall on both the Gentiles (Cf. Romans 1:18) and the Jews (Romans 2:5). The “righteous judgment of God” will be revealed in its fullness on all who have not repented but continued in sin!