An excerpt from a post by Paul Tripp at Liberate:
The Anger of Grace
Let’s be very clear. God’s anger is the anger of grace. It isn’t the violent anger of unbridled and unrighteous fury. God’s anger always works to right what’s wrong. That’s what grace does. This gracious anger has two sides to it: justice and mercy. In the gracious anger of justice, God works to punish wrong, but he does even more. God isn’t satisfied merely with punishing wrong. His hunger for right is so strong that he will not relent until wrong has been completely destroyed. He will not rest until evil is no more and justice and righteousness reign forever and ever!
There is also another side to his gracious anger. It’s the anger of mercy. In mercy he works to convict—that is, to produce in us a sorrow for the wrongs that we think, say, and do. In mercy he works to forgive—that is, to clear our moral debt. In mercy he works to empower—that is, to give us everything we need to resist wrong and to do what’s right. And in mercy he works to deliver. He won’t be satisfied until every microbe of sin is completely eradicated from every cell of the heart of every one of his children.
Where do we see both sides of God’s anger coming together in one moment? On that hill outside the city gates where Jesus hung. That’s where we see justice and mercy kiss. As he hung there, Jesus bore the full weight of the justice of God’s anger. He paid the penalty our sin required. And on the cross Jesus became the instrument of God’s merciful anger that every sinner needs. He purchased our forgiveness.
Read the whole post here.