Is it proper to be afraid of God? The only proper answer is that it is the essence of impiety not to be afraid of God when there is reason to be afraid. Adam's sin and his sin alone was the reason for the emotion of terror with which his soul had become stricken. But once he sinned the absence of this dread would have shown complete insensitivity to the revolution in which his sin consisted and which it also caused. For Adam to have behaved as if the rupture had not taken place would have been an unspeakable aggravation of his offense.
...It would be a violation of the infirmity inherent in our finitude not to be filled with horror and anguish at the thought of being subject to the fury of God's displeasure...Why do we resist the thought of God's wrath? Why do we try to suppress the conviction of its reality? Is it not because we do not wish to entertain the terror which the conviction involves and we do not wish to be placed under the necessity of fashioning thought and life in terms of this reality?
My heart became hot within me. As I mused, the fire burned; then I spoke with my tongue: "O Lord, make me know my end and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting I am!"
09 December 2005
As I'm preparing for preaching Sunday night on the wrath of Jesus, I came across this passage from John Murray's Principles of Conduct, and thought it might be helpful.