Since the introduction of sin into human history the wrath of God has been and is being revealed from heaven against all human ungodliness and unrighteousness (Romans 1:18). Because Jehovah has no pleasure in the death of the wicked (Ezekiel 33:11), He is longsuffering and executes His righteous judgment with the goal of all coming to repentance (2nd Peter 3:9). Like the execution of His judgment on Pharaoh (as recorded in Exodus 7:14-12:30) and His judgment upon Israel (as detailed in Amos 4:6-12), Jehovah’s righteous judgment is best summed up in Psalm 9:5. Here, it is written, “You have rebuked the nations; You have destroyed the wicked; You have blotted out their name forever.”
First, Jehovah rebukes. God is angry with the wicked every day (Psalm 7:11). His opposition to every unclean thing is unchanging and settled. His holy wrath is first expressed in correction. He rebukes and corrects because of his profuse love (Proverbs 3:12). Should this expression of His righteous judgment be resisted, He then lovingly increases the severity of His response.
Next, Jehovah destroys. When Saul of Tarsus continued to kick against the goads, he lost his sight for three days (Acts 9:5ff.). When Jehovah began to avenge the blood of the souls under the altar (Revelation 6:9-10), the first four of the seven trumpets brought the destruction of a third of the trees, sea, sea creatures, ships, rivers, springs of water, sun, moon, and stars (Revelation 8:7-12). When the unrighteous do not repent, Jehovah continues to be longsuffering but not forever.
Finally, Jehovah blots out. The divine eraser has eliminated the cities of Sodom, Gomorrah, Nineveh, and Babylon off the earth’s map. Not one stone of Jerusalem’s temple was left standing upon another by the winter of A. D. 70. Anyone who appears before Jehovah with his name blotted out of the book of life will be forever banished to obscurity in the eternal lake of fire, the second death.
“It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Hebrews 10:31).