Isaiah 63:1-14 is quite problematic for many American Christians because of the first six verses. One of the biggest stumbling blocks for Americans to believe in the God of the Scriptures are the violent texts, whether God is telling Israel to leave no survivors in a battle or it is descriptions like this one of the final judgment. There are two views of violence that are prevalent in our culture today. The first we might call violence as entertainment — violence for the sake of violence. And the second is the one that causes our stumbling — it is the view of mainstream “Christian” culture that wants to avoid violence at all costs. The important thing about violence though is the context as examples from being a captive in a concentration camp in Germany to attacking al Qaeda terrorists to the book of Judges. We want peace but often violence must come first. This message might not be well suited to little children who do not understand the context, hence it is rated R. But then again do we understand the context of the final judgment? Do you see the violence you have done to God and His people or are you desensitized to it all? Thanks be to God that Christ violently died for our sins.
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