The Lord God Jehovah, the Creator of the Universe, has many positive personality characteristics and traits. Some of these personality characteristics and traits that He expresses toward humans are: love, mercy, grace, faithfulness, compassion, and longsuffering. Of course, since man is rebellious by nature, longsuffering is a very important personality trait. But, like most humans, God has a negative personality trait that creates bad situations and bad circumstances for those that encounter it, the trait of wrath. Therefore, even though God is loving, merciful, compassionate, and longsuffering, there comes a time in Godís relationship with man that He permits His wrath to consume His creation for their sins toward Him. As a result, those who sin against God will have to pay a serious penalty for their sins. Also, those who sin against God will have to meet Godís requirements for the forgiveness of sins, which He requires in order to live eternally with Him in Heaven.
God has always provided an escape mechanism for sinful man to return to Him because that is just His nature. In Genesis 6:1-8, God actually repented that He had made man because the sins of mankind grieved His heart. In fact, God said that He would destroy His own creations: men, beasts, creeping things, and the fowls of the air. But, a man by the name of Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. Therefore, God had Noah to build an Ark for the preservation of Noah and his family. Of course, the Ark was the escape mechanism for the sins of mankind. As a result, God spared the life of Noah and his family. However, the remainder of Godís creations died in the deluge, the great flood. Needless to say, God had one and only one reason for destroying everyone on the earth; it was manís sins toward God. Mankind should have learned at that time that God will put up with sin and rebellion for only a certain period of time. Then, His judgment and wrath will come upon those who repeatedly rebel and sin against Him. Fortunately, since God is a just God, He always provides an escape mechanism. Sadly, many people refuse to accept it.
The next great Biblical event related to God offering an escape mechanism for sinful man occurred during the time that God placed a series of curses on the ancient Egyptians. In fact, it was during this time that God sent ten plagues to attempt to get Pharaoh Ramses II, possibly around 1275 B.C., to let the Hebrew slaves return to their homeland of Canaan. But, the first nine plagues did not convince Ramses II to let the slaves leave. However, the tenth plague ultimately gained the attention of the pharaoh as God and Moses had desired. The tenth plague was the death of the first born of all humans and all animals. Evidently, the wrath of God was vehement toward the Egyptians and apparently toward some of the Hebrews, too. But, despite Godís anger, he offered an escape mechanism. Anyone who placed the blood of a lamb over the doorpost of a house would be spared. When the death angel that God sent to destroy the first born of every family in Egypt saw the blood over the doorpost, he would pass by that particular house and spare the first born inside the house. Therefore, the blood of a sacrificial lamb was the cure for death of the first born, that is, if those inside the house made the effort to apply the blood of the lamb to their doorposts. Of course, the death of the first born in every Egyptian family led to the release of the Hebrew slaves from their bondage.
After the Exodus from Egypt, God through Moses and the Hebrew priests established a new escape mechanism for the sins of His people. The priests instituted an annual Day of Atonement as described in Leviticus 16: 9-10, 20-22. It states that on this day,
Aaron shall bring the goat upon which the Lordís lot fell, and offer him for a sin offering. But the goat, on which the lot fell to be the scapegoat, shall be presented alive before the LORD, to make atonement with him, and to let him go for a scapegoat into the wilderness. When he hath made an end of reconciling the holy place, and the tabernacle of the congregation, and the altar, he shall bring the live goat. Aaron shall lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat, and shall send him away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness. The goat shall bear upon him all their iniquities unto a land not inhabited: and he shall let go the goat in the wilderness.
Therefore, as a result of the priests putting the sins of the Israelites on the scapegoat on the Day of Atonement, the early Israelites were forgiven of their sins and the wrath of God toward them had been satisfied, at least for that time.
However, since the beginning of the first century, God has offered mankind a new escape mechanism from the sins of the world. This escape mechanism came in the form of His Son Jesus Christ. Since God cannot look upon sin and since a blood sacrifice must be offered in order to remove sin from the hearts of mankind, someone must sacrifice his life for the salvation of those who sin against God. Fortunately, Jesus Christ was willing to offer His life as the blood sacrifice, in other words, the scapegoat. As stated in Hebrews 9:22, ďAnd almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.Ē Therefore, Jesus Christ shed His Holy Blood in order for God to look at mankind from a different perspective. As a result, the annual Easter celebration that took place this past Sunday is the religious holiday that is representative of this great holy feat accomplished by Jesus Christ on behalf of fallen man.
But, sadly, too many people refuse to accept Jesus Christ as the savior of the world. Instead, they look upon Jesus as a great prophet whose teachings are intolerant and insensitive to the sinners living in a postmodern culture. Too many people, even some preachers, do not even believe that Jesus Christ was born of the virgin Mary, died on the Cross of Calvary, and arose again the third day from a sealed tomb. Of course, it does not make any logical sense to profess to being a born-again Christian, and, at the same time, refuting the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. As a result, many Christian churches are giving less recognition to the true purpose of the Christian Church, which is to be a soul-saving station rather than a socializing station. Some churches have even taken songs that mention the blood of Jesus out of their hymnals. Also, some churches believe that men can work their way into Heaven, which is very similar to the beliefs of the Catholic Church during the Middle Ages. Apparently, history repeats itself in the church world, too.
However, it was wrong then and it is wrong now. A person cannot be saved through a workís salvation. Salvation can only be obtained by faith in Jesus Christ and His shed blood on the Cross of Calvary. Those who attempt to get to Heaven any other way are fooling themselves. As John 3: 16 states, ďFor the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.Ē Also, as stated in John 14:6, ďJesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.Ē Then, in Galatians 6: 14, the Apostle Paul said, ďBut God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world. The atonement of mankind based on Jesus Christ crucified on the Cross of Calvary is the only acceptable method to get to Heaven, even though modern liberal clergymen and theologians would refute it.
But, why do more and more people deny the deity of Jesus Christ and His death and resurrection for manís atonement? It began when immigrants from all over the world came to a globalized America and brought their religious beliefs that are contrary to the teachings of Jesus Christ with them. As a result, more and more people have began to deny the deity of Jesus Christ and His blood-bought plan of salvation. As a result, too many faithless ďreligiousĒ people began to believe that there are multiple ways to get to Heaven through multiple gods. Therefore, America as a nation is suffering immensely culturally, religiously, politically, and economically. Ultimately, Godís wrath has not been completely satisfied yet. Of course, the only way in which Godís wrath can be satisfied is for America to return to the God of their forefathers who believed that faith in Jesus Christ and His shed blood was the only way to get to Heaven. In fact, unless America comes to its senses soon, the wrath of God toward the United States, some of which already exists, could intensify even more because He cannot look on sin in a person or a nation. Finally, since the first Easter Sunday, God has provided only one possible cure for sin in America and in the other nations of the world, that is, His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, without which the wrath of God cannot be stayed from a rebellious people.