Should Christians want evil people to be punished?

Jesus was the picture of perfect love and forgiveness, but He was also the picture of perfect holiness as well. It is not un-Christian to hope that God punishes evil on this earth, or that those placed in authority by God punish evil. Matt Walsh stirred up anger on Twitter and had a number of people attack his faith when when he said of North Korean tyrant, mass murderer Kim Jong Un:

I do wish ill on him. I hope he dies. He should have been hanged for human rights abuses and mass murder long ago.

So was Walsh wrong? Nope. I point you to the prayer book of the Christian, the book of Psalms:

In Psalm 3:7, the psalmist notes God has “smitten all mine enemies upon the cheek bone” and that He has “broken the teeth of the ungodly.”

In Psalm 6:10, King David wishes for his enemies to be “ashamed and sore vexed.”

In Psalm 18:40, King David praises God: “Thou hast also given me the necks of mine enemies; that I might destroy them that hate me.”

In Psalm 59, King David prays for the judgment of the wicked: “Consume them in wrath, consume them, that they may not be: and let them know that God ruleth in Jacob unto the ends of the earth.”

There are many more examples of earthly judgment of the wicked, and this does not stop when we reach the New Testament. King Herod allowed people to praise him as a god, so God immediately struck him down. Ananias and Sapphira lied about the cost of the land they sold, so both were struck down by God after the Apostle Peter confronted them about their lies. The Apostle Paul warned the church at Corinth that those taking the Lord’s supper in an unworthy manner were sick and some have died.

God has always punished wickedness with earthly judgment. This is because He is a holy and just God. We should see such things as good, and we are not more holy than the writers of Scripture if we refuse to wish for judgment. The reason we want to see wicked men like Kim Jong Un, Jeffrey Dahmer and Ted Bundy punished is because we instinctively know that God’s holiness requires punishment of sin.

With all of that said, we should understand that these things are also a warning for us. It is God’s kindness to us when the wicked falls, because it reminds us to repent of our own sin. We are all deserving of both earthly punishment and eternal Hell Fire, and we should seek forgiveness at the foot of the Cross.

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