Does God know anger?


We recently had an e-mail from someone who had received our advertised booklet The Fall and Rise of the Jewish People.” This person wrote:

“Thank you for your literature.  However, I am shocked and surprised that in Chapter 11 you refer to ‘God’s anger… In my experience God would not know anger – He is loving, kind and non-judgemental. You may be referring to the old testament of course in which God is portrayed as a human emotional being capable of such feelings. Thank God this beautiful power is far beyond that.”

The person then requested to be “unsubscribed” as a consequence. 

It is sad that due to ignorance, the clear teachings of the Bible are here being questioned.

In this Q&A, we will answer the two references that the writer makes about the God of the Old Testament and the assertion that God would not know anger.  

We have no reason to spend a lot of time on who was the God of the Old Testament, as we had numerous pieces of literature on the subject, including a Q&A entitled “Was Jesus Christ the God of the Old Testament?” which was in our weekly Update dated 6th August 2021.

Just a few points from that Q&A should suffice, as follows:

“The Church of God has understood for many years that Jesus Christ was THE God of the Old Testament…

“Notice the dialogue and the reaction of the Jews to Christ’s words in John 8:56–58: ‘[Jesus said,] “Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad.” Then the Jews said to Him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham?” Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.”’

“When Jesus said, ‘I AM,’ rather than, ‘I WAS,’ the Jews understood that He identified Himself as God—as ‘Yahweh,’ the ‘I AM’ or Eternal of the Old Testament. That is why they ‘took up stones to throw at Him’ (verse 59)…

“According to Biblical testimony, some did see ‘God’ in Old Testament times, and they did hear His voice. On the other hand, Christ and the apostles taught that no human has ever seen or heard the voice of ‘God.’ Since God does not contradict Himself in His Word, He is obviously talking about two different personages here. Indeed, the Bible clarifies that no one has ever seen God the Father (compare again John 5:37; 6:46). But some did see ‘God’—that is, the second being in the God Family—Jesus Christ, in His glorified state…

“The Jews at the time of Christ did not know—and most still don’t know today—that God is a Family, presently consisting of two God beings. Christ came to REVEAL the Father to them (Matthew 11:27; Luke 10:22). The Jews thought they knew the Father, not realizing that the God of the Old Testament, who directly worked with and dealt with Israel, was Jesus Christ—not God the Father…

“In conclusion, the world has been cut off from God the Father, the HIGHEST of the Godhead, as well as the knowledge as to who God the Father and Jesus Christ are. The Father did not deal directly with mankind, and He was not generally worshipped by the overwhelming majority, including those who read but did not understand the Scriptures. No one has ever seen the Father or heard His voice. It was Christ who showed Himself to and dealt with the people. It was He who was THE God of the Old Testament.”

1 Corinthians 10:1-4 is a most telling passage of Scripture:

“Moreover, brethren, I do not want you to be unaware that all our fathers were under the cloud, all passed through the sea, all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, all ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ.”

Our correspondent said that “You may be referring to the old testament of course in which God is portrayed as a human emotional being capable of such feelings. Thank God this beautiful power is far beyond that.”

It appears to this person that the God of the Old Testament [who was Jesus Christ] was portrayed as an emotional human being, which is clearly not the case. Of course, mainstream church theology states erroneously that God the Father was the God of the Old Testament.

To look at the second area of this person’s disagreement with God’s Word is that it is asserted that “In my experience God would not know anger – He is loving, kind and non-judgemental.” In this context, the person refers to chapter 11 of our booklet, “The Fall and Rise of the Jewish People.”    Let us look at this at the beginning of that chapter, under the heading, “God’s Anger Against, and Mercy for, Judah”:

“The Bible tells us that in the near future, God will bring terrible punishment on the modern descendants of the ancient house of Judah, not because of the conduct of ancients, but because of their own conduct.

“Defeat in War and Captivity Prophesied for Judah

“In speaking of OUR day, God tells us that modern Jews WILL repent and accept the Sacrifice of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of their sins, but only AFTER they have been held captive by foreign invaders.”

To say that God would not know anger is to ignore many passages in the Bible., under the heading “DICTIONARY OF BIBLE THEMES—1025 GOD, ANGER OF,” defines anger as follows: “The punitive and vindicatory reaction, legitimate and controlled, yet awesomely emphatic, of God the righteous judge to unrighteousness in his human creatures. Up to the present, the expression of God’s anger and wrath has had the purpose of drawing sinners to repentance and conversion, but this will not be the case at the final judgment.”

We know that, by definition, God is love.   One of many descriptions is given in 1 John 4:7-12:

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us.”

God is love but that can be manifested in different ways as we will see. gives a comprehensive list of the nature of God’s anger. They point out that it is fearsome, reluctant and short-lived; consistent with His righteous and merciful character; and that it fulfils God’s purpose. They also list the causes for God’s anger as idolatry and unbelief; disobedience and disloyalty; ungodly living; pride, arrogance and hypocrisy; complaints against, and opposition to, God’s purposes; injustice; and the rejection of God’s servantsThey continue to show that God’s anger is revealed in present times and in a future “day of wrath” which is anticipated. They then list the consequences of God’s anger in that punishment will be experienced by rebellious people.

To meet the erroneous assertion that in the New Testament, God does not know anger,  the website quotes among many other Scriptures John 3:36; Romans 1:18-23; Romans 2:5, 8; Ephesians 5:6; Jude 14-15; Hebrews 10:29-31; Matthew 21:33-41; Matthew 18:34-35; and Matthew 25:28-30. 

This shows how ridiculous it is to make the assertion that “God would not know anger” as “He is loving, kind and non-judgemental.”

God’s wrath—both of the Father and of the Son—is also vividly described in the Book of Revelation. 

We read in Psalm 7:11 that “God is a just judge, And God is angry with the wicked every day.” In this context, please read our Q&A, titled, “Would you please explain Psalm 7:11, which says that God is angry with the wicked every day. Why would God be angry.”

Please also note our Q&A about the wrath of God, explaining God’s anger and the causes for it in great detail, titled, “Can you explain what the Bible says about Wrath?” (Part 2) 

God judges and has to be “judgemental.” There is nothing wrong with being angry as long as it is righteous anger – and with God that must always be the case as He is perfect.    For example, Jesus was angry with the money changers in the Temple (compare Matthew 21:12-13).

In recent weeks we have run a three-part series of Q&As entitled “Does God Love Everyone?  Does the Bible Teach Unconditional Love?”     In repeating the notes from our correspondent: “In my experience God would not know anger – He is loving, kind and non-judgemental,” we see that such “understanding” goes against what the Bible tells us and we will quote, very briefly, from part 2 of our Q&A to prove that God does love and does judge all people:

“It is true that some will end up in the lake of fire. But even this does not prove God’s hatred for them. Sadly, there are those who have had their opportunity to choose righteousness and accept God’s love, but instead they have committed the ‘unpardonable sin.’ They knew and understood perfectly well that they had to submit to Christ, but they refused to do so. They became bitter, hateful, resentful and malicious. They made the unchangeable decision NEVER to repent. If a person has reached that stage that he cannot repent, because he has made the final decision NOT to WANT to repent, then God will not force repentance on such a person. God grants repentance, but a person must want to receive it. A person, though, who maliciously rejects Christ, would only continue to live in misery and pain–and that is why God will save such a person from eternal misery, by DESTROYING him or her in a lake of fire.”

Also, in part 3 of this series, we stated this:

“God’s love and His righteousness do not tolerate or justify an unrepentant sinner’s continued ungodly lifestyle. God sees how much suffering and pain for others the sinner’s conduct causes. And so, we read in John 3:36 (Revised Standard Version): ‘He who believes in the Son has eternal life; he who does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God rests upon him.’ Romans 1:18 adds: ‘For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness…’

“And so, we read the following alarming pronouncement by Christ in Matthew 24:48-51: ‘But if that evil servant says in his heart, ‘My master is delaying his coming,’ and begins to beat his fellow servants, and to eat and drink with the drunkards, the master of that servant will come on a day when he is not looking for him and at an hour that he is not aware of, and will cut him in two and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites. There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

“This evil servant is one who has committed the unpardonable sin, and whose fate it is to be thrown into the lake of fire where there is wailing and gnashing of teeth (compare Matthew 13:41-42, 49-50). But before he ends up in the lake of fire, he will be ‘cut in two.’ This ‘correction’ is not for the purpose of leading him towards salvation; rather, it is punishment for his evil deeds with which he influenced and tortured others, without a willingness to repent. His punishment reflects God’s love for others, as well as His righteousness, which demands that the sinner has to pay. It is clearly NOT a reflection of God’s ‘unconditional’ love for the incorrigible sinner.”

We can always have faith that God has a reason for what He chooses to do or not to do.  And He does get angry for all the right reasons and has to be “judgemental” in many ways.   To say otherwise is a denial of all that we read in the Word of God.

Lead Writers: Brian Gale (United Kingdom) and Norbert Link

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