God is the one who created* all things. He created our first parents, Adam and Eve. God gave Adam and Eve all of the fruit in the garden to eat. And God made a rule for the man and the woman to live by. He kept only one thing from them. They were not to eat the fruit from one tree.
But Adam and Eve did not obey God. We use the word ‘sin’ to describe what they did. But it means more than to disobey. Sin is refusing to believe God. And it shows a failure to trust* God. Adam and Eve did not only break a rule. They believed the snake who came into the garden. He told them that God was keeping something good from them. And because they believed the snake, they doubted that God was good. And they doubted that God wanted the best for them. Sin means that they decided to stand against God. He was their Maker and Lord.* But they decided that they did not want to yield to God. They decided to stand against him. They imagined that they knew what was best for them better than God did. They thought that their way would be better than God’s way.
Adam failed to keep God’s one command. He did not give God the honor* that he is due. He failed to give God glory.* He showed that he did not respect* God. When Adam sinned*, it meant that he did not consider God or his words of great worth. It meant that he had stopped being loyal to God his maker. Adam did not only break a rule. When he sinned, he also broke a trust. And he broke a relationship.
Those things are also true when we sin. When we sin, we do not honor God. We show that we do not trust him. We show that we do not believe that God knows the best way. And we do not trust him to do what is best for us. We doubt that God is good. We doubt that he is wise. We want to please ourselves. And we believe that God is keeping something good from us. So, we go our own way and not God’s way. We refuse to allow God to tell us what to do. And we say no to the one who made us. This is what our first parents did in the garden. And this is what we do when we sin.
God is holy. He is set apart from sin. When a person breaks a law*, there are always punishments that come with it. When we break God’s law, he is the one who decides what the punishments will be.
God does not allow sin to go without punishment. The word that the scriptures* use to speak of God’s anger for sin is the word ‘wrath’ * Wrath is God showing that he has no pleasure when people sin. It is his justice* at work. He blesses* the ones who do right. He punishes those who do wrong.
God’s wrath is not like human anger. When a man or woman become angry, they may lose control of themselves. They may do things that are not right or reasonable when they are angry. God’s wrath is not like this. His anger is perfect and it is always right. He punishes sin. If he did not, he would not be holy.
Imagine that someone hurts you or takes something that belongs to you. You may go to court to ask the judge to punish that person. You want them to return what they took. Or you want them to be punished so that they will not hurt you again. If the judge knew that the person hurt you, but did nothing, he would not be a good judge. He would not be doing right. So, God would not be doing right if he did not judge those who do not obey his words.
Wrath is God’s anger against sin and those who do sin. The wrath of God rests upon all who do not follow him. Some day, God will judge all people. He will bless* those who trust him. But God will punish all who do not trust him, for every evil* thing that they have done. He will pour out his wrath on ‘all who do not know God and do not obey his good message.’