Does God Still Kill People Today?

First, let’s start off by saying that God is a God of love, and that intrinsically tied to His nature is His attribute of love. God loves His creation – after all, He created all of it, including man. The Bible plainly tells us that God loves the world (John 3:16).

However, Genesis 6:6 tells us that God is grieved when man sins and He is often forced to judge them for their rebellious nature. “The LORD was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain” (Genesis 6:6, NIV). This tells us that God did not and does not enjoy judging people for their sin, although it was and is necessary at times. He was forced to judge them for their wickedness, although He clearly did not desire to do so. The prophet Ezekiel gave the people a similar message from God concerning their spiritually adulterous hearts. The prophet said that God’s heart was crushed because the people had turned away from Him and had turned to idols. “I was crushed by their promiscuous hearts that turned away from Me and by their eyes that lusted after their idols. They will loathe themselves because of the evil things they did, their abominations of every kind. And they will know that I am the LORD; I did not threaten to bring this disaster on them without a reason” (Ezekiel 6:9-10, HCSB). Here we learn not only that God was grieved by their sin, but that it was Israel’s fault, not God’s, that they were judged.

Since God is the giver of life, He has the right to take life as he sees fit. God is our Creator and He alone has the right to judge us for our wrongdoing, whether we are Christians or not. God may use many different means to judge humanity for their sin, such as famine (2 Samuel 21:1), sickness, war (2 Chronicles 13), plagues (2 Samuel 24:15), and other methods, some very strange (See Acts 12:20-25). Whether in the Old Testament age or the New Testament age, a Sovereign God has the right to do as He pleases, according to His good pleasure, without being questioned by His creation. After all, He is God, and we are not.

In the Old Testament, God was working through Israel as a nation, both politically and spiritually. He seemed to have handled things differently, or at least His judgments were more clearly attributed to Him. When He judged, the prophets had either already proclaimed it (such as in Hosea Chapters 5 and 6), or made a proclamation concerning it after the judgment (see Zechariah Chapter 13). Today, God operates through His Church, the Bride of Christ, and there are no messengers pronouncing specific impending judgments from God. Thus when God does move to judge people for their actions, it might very well go unnoticed. This does not mean that God is not still concerned with sin or that sin does not go unpunished. It merely is not advertised, per se, as it was in Old Testament times.

We can be thankful that God is still moved to forgiveness. 2 Peter 3:9 tells us that God is longsuffering towards His people, and endures much sin and unrighteousness. Lamentations 3 paints a picture of a God of grace and mercies whose mercies are new every single morning. “Because of the LORD’s faithful love we do not perish, for His mercies never end. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness! I say: The LORD is my portion, therefore I will put my hope in Him (Lamentations 3:22-24, HCSB). The author paints a beautiful portrait of a God whose mercies are new every morning and who is faithful to His people. He is so faithful that we can put our trust and hope in Him. I Timothy 2:13 tells us that even when we are faithless, God remains faithful.

Yes, God has and does judge people. Yes, the shedding of blood is one method that God has or does use to judge the unrighteous. However, we should not think that God is unjust in exercising His judgments, or that God does not still judge people for their sins today. God is still righteousness, and still demands that His people turn from sin (2 Timothy 2:19, HCSB). As the Creator over the universe, He sovereignly has all things under His providential hand, and we do good to place our hope and our trust in Him.

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GotQuestion.org, article 2

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2 responses to “Does God Still Kill People Today?

  1. While I essentially agree with the article I am confused by the portion below:

    “‘The LORD was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain’ (Genesis 6:6, NIV). This tells us that God did not and does not enjoy judging people for their sin, although it was and is necessary at times.”

    The verse you have listed does not seem to address judgement at all. Is their something in the original language that would explain how this relates to judgement?

    Thanks,
    Mike

    • Mike,
      Thanks for your comment and for reading my post. This was a hard, hard article for me to write for some reason. I almost copped out and gave it to another writer, but then I realized that by answering the question I had an opportunity minister to someone and share the grace and mercy of God. So, I manned up and stopped my whining and wrote the post :-).
      I see now that I should have included some commentary on the context of this verse. This was the insight we get into God’s heart right before the Great Deluge. Looking at the verse in context tells us that WHY God was grieved, as verse 7 says, “I will wipe off the face of earth: man, whom I created, together with the animals, creatures that craw, and birds of the sky – for I regret I made them” (HCSB). The word “regret” is the Hebrew word “Nacham”, Strongs #5162 (Hebrew), which is a word that refers to an attempt to ease pain of grief after a heart break. So God’s judgment both cause God great pain and greif, yet was also necessary to relieve God of the grief. I think, from a logical standpoint, we can also assert that God was grieved from having to judge man, for I don’t think we can contend that He “enjoyed it”.
      Thanks for reading, and thanks for helping me clear up my own mess. Blessings to you and your family.

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