God’s Judgment of Nations

This post is offered in answer to the many who have asked whether God judges nations. In search of the answer, the Bible was my source.

In working on a computer there is a background screen enabling a clearer view. Let God’s love be your background screen. 

The primary city on which these thoughts are based is Nineveh in the country of Assyria. The source is the little Old Testament book of Nahum. It opens identifying God’s disposition.

“The Lord is slow to anger and great in power, And will not at all acquit the wicked.” (Nahum 1:3) He is not a capricious God. There is a pattern that precedes His judgment: God warns, God waits, God acts. 

That was the pattern used by three prophets who wrote of cultures God judged: Nahum against Assyria, Obadiah against Edom, and Habakkuk against Babylon. Ezekiel Chapters 25-28 gives a list of nations God had judged to that date. The Philistines are noted as an example: “I will execute great vengeance on them with furious rebukes; and they shall know that I am the Lord, when I lay my vengeance on them.”

This pattern of God’s patience is noted in the New Testament. “The Lord is not slack concerning his promises, as some men count slackness, but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” (II Peter 3:9) This takes into account some will discount and make light of warnings.

Scripture warns of serious consequences that result from disobedience. This is heavy: “If you do not obey the voice of the Lord, but rebel against the commandments of the Lord, then the hand of the Lord will be against you, as it was against your fathers.” (II Samuel 12:15)

Inscribed on the Jefferson Memorial are these words of Jefferson:

God who gave us life gave us liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed a conviction that these liberties are a gift of God? Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that His justice cannot sleep forever.”

My conclusion is that God does judge nations, all nations.

I am going to personally take heart in this promise. “If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” (II Chronicles 7:14)

God is not selfish and overbearing in wanting obedience. He wants us to be obedient for our own sake as well as His. He set the standards for good and evil and knows the consequence of both. It is to our advantage to be obedient because inherent in such conduct are blessings. At variance with this is the fact that disobedience has intrinsic in it the seed of spiritual and moral debilitation and ultimate destruction. Disobedience is not just bad, it is simply bad for us. God desires our best, therefore He appeals for us to be obedient.

My favorite verse in Nahum is 1:7, “The Lord is good, A stronghold in the day of trouble; And He knows those who trust in Him.”

This is perhaps the most serious post I have ever written. It is done with the prayer that it might make the issue clear and be met with a positive response.

There is a grievous aspect to national judgment. Within a population consisting of mostly disobedient people that comprise an ungodly nation are some godly people. Collateral judgment falls on them also. The good are victims of the discipline deserved by the bad. Even then their God loves them and will give them spiritual blessings to sustain them.