Friday, September 21, 2012

What Destruction from the Almighty Looks Like

During the days of the prophet Joel the people of Judah and Jerusalem are being overtaken by a horrendous locusts plague.  It is as the Garden of Eden before them and “behind them a desolate wilderness”.  The prophet, through the inspiration of YHWH, uses this plight to ask a very probing question to the people of Judah.

If we can’t endure a plague of locusts what would happen if the Almighty was bent on destroying us?  Could we endure?  Who could stand under his fierce wrath?  As Joel says in 1:15, “and as destruction from the Almighty it comes”. 

The Hebrew word for destruction is shadad whereas the Hebrew word for the Almighty is El Shaddai.  When Shaddai become bent on shadad what will happen?  How destructive can El Shaddai be? 

Here is a faint picture of an answer to that question (Someone said there is some language in the film, I can’t hear it, but be cautious):

(HT: Challies)

In response to that video Tony Reinke shared this quote from Jonathan Edwards, “"The torrents of liquid fire that are vomited from the belly of hell, by the mouths of volcanoes, shadow forth what is in hell."

I imagine that if I saw a family member, a friend, a neighbor, or even some random dude on the street plummeting into that abyss I’d do everything in my power to stop him.  I’d beg and plead with him and as it were make sure that he had to trample me in order to throw himself in.  I doubt I’d unmovingly tell him cute stories and anecdotes.  And I’d like to think I wouldn’t stay silent.  Might I remember that very real sinners are plunging themselves into a very real hell that is more fierce than this.

If the Almighty can create something this fierce who can stand when he is bent on destruction? 

Only those who find refuge in the strong tower that El Shaddai has hoisted, namely the all-powerful Jesus, will find safety on that day. 

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for speaking what I felt as I gazed into the maws of utter destruction. Horror at the fellow perched on the side, so hungry for awe in this age that has exhausted that word.

    Then he goes and plants his puny flag in front of it. So pathetic,so presumptuous, so like men with mere breath in our nostrils. We are hoping there is nothing to fear, after all.

    Karen Butler



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