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Anger


Terminology


The anger of men



The anger of Jesus


The wrath of God



As a translation of words denoting God’s "anger," the English word is unfortunate so far as it may seem to imply selfish, malicious or vindictive personal feeling, which is a characteristic of human anger but not of divine wrath.

C.H. Dodd regards “the wrath of God” not as “the attitude of God to man, but an inevitable process of cause and effect in a moral universe” (Romans, p. 50). But a completely depersonalized concept is not adequate to cover Biblical teaching. The wrath of God is certainly no capricious passion, but it is the personal attitude of a personal God, the “eternal recoil against the unholy on the part of the all-holy God.” One side of God’s holiness is His anger against sin; the other, and more fundamental aspect, is His love and mercy, to which the whole Bible bears witness. If we fail to recognize His wrath, we cannot fully appreciate His mercy.

Bibliography

  • J. Denney, “Anger”, HDCG (1906);
  • C. H. Dodd, The Epistle of Paul to the Romans, MNT (1932);
  • R. V. G. Tasker, The Biblical Doctrine of the Wrath of God (1951);
  • J. Fichtner, G. Stahlin, et al, κργή TWNT V (1954), 382-447;
  • L. L. Morris, The Apostolic Preaching of the Cross (1955), chs. 4, 5; A. T. Hanson, The Wrath of the Lamb (1957);
  • G. H. C. Macgregor, “The Concept of the Wrath of God in the New Testament,” New Testament VII (1960-61);
  • D. E. H. White-ley, The Theology of St. Paul (1964), 61-72.