The idea of God as a judge (and therefore a God of wrath) has come to a head in the person of Jesus. His life is like a conversation, with the Pharisees being very upset that He says He speaks for God, but does not behave in the appropriate way. He even goes as far as to say “If you see me, you see the Father”.
They mumble “This man receives sinners and eats with them.”
They crucify Him, and mock Him, asking Him to bring a little wrath their way. Yet He just hangs there… He forgives them… He dies. And in their minds that is the end of that for this blasphemer.
But it isn’t, his resurrection validates what He says about Himself. If you look at the parable of the wicked husbandman, after killing the heir, the Pharisees say the husbandman deserves wrath. Surely the wrath will come now!
But it doesn’t.
This should have been the end of the wrathful God: we do the absolute worst we can to God i.e. crucify Him, and receive only forgiveness, love and compassion. Like poking a sleeping lion, we poke harder and harder, until we realize the lion isn’t sleeping, it is dead. The wrathful God is a farce.
But we have managed to continue the conversation by turning something so clear into the mangled mess of mind gymnastics that is “the Father needs to punish something and therefore punishes his Son instead of us”.
The conversation continues, but now it is happening inside of us. For we have an inner Witness, who knows the Father as only “Father”. And that uncomfortable feeling you have with the ludicrous idea of God punishing innocence instead of us, is a call to let go of your fear and believe what God has been saying all along…