Ever read “The Grapes of Wrath?” Weird name for a novel, right?
In Revelation 14, an angel comes and gathers with his sickle all of the evil from the earth, and throws these “grapes” into the winepress of the wrath of God. The resulting blood pressed out reaches 180 miles into the air!
This metaphor can be helpful to remind us of how much God hates sin. We tend to trivialize sin and think of it as a minor error, and not that bad or serious, but as seen above, sin flies in the face of the very NATURE of God. It naturally repulses Him. He hates to see us hurting ourselves with it, and is dismayed when we choose to embrace this destruction; to embrace the opposite of what He is.
This brushing off of sin on our part comes about, I think, because we often see God as distant and not someone that we’re really in a relationship with. We don’t see Him as a personal agent, he’s more of a distant judge and we just kind of think, “Yeah, sure, He’ll go easy on me.” But this misses the connection! If we KNEW Him instead of just knowing about Him, perhaps we’d WANT to be repulsed by our own, personal sin. Look at Psalms 50:21, where the Lord says,
“These things you have done, and I have been silent; you thought that I was one like yourself. But now I rebuke you and lay the charge before you.”
We need to get to KNOW God lest we make the mistake above. These sins are not trivial; we need to see them as repulsive and ugly. We need to see them as something that we desire to remove from our lives through the sanctifying work of Christ and the Holy Spirit! In fact, I think that this should be our ambition.