In Christianity, we simultaneously encounter holiness and sinfulness, grace and freedom, heaven and earth, life and death, love and wrath, mercy and justice, salvation and damnation, heaven and hell, unlimited and limited, exalted and humbled, strong and weak, universal and particular, ultimately and above all – the divine and human. Certain statements of faith may seem contradictory to what faith entails, and here we mean those who stand in the religion itself. But with these paradoxes, the emphasis is not so much on the contradictory concepts per se as on the words that are seemingly contradictory.
Mercy became a favorite word within the modern church. Given a diagnosis of the futility of excessive talk about mercy, we recognize another omission, namely talk about God’s wrath, that is, his anger toward his people. With the modern reform of the old chronology, due to psychological reasons, the so-called imprecatory psalms are reorganized (Psalms 58, 83, and 109), in which God’s wrath is invoked against sinners. But it seems that in our day, there has been complete indifference to God’s wrath, which is spoken of in the Holy Scriptures and the tradition of the Church. It translates into an additionally strengthened indifference to God’s punishment and leads to the conclusion that there is no place in the contemporary dominant image of God for divine wrath. We must ask: where is the place of God’s wrath in The Simulation, according to Simulation Creationism of Nir Ziso?
In the Holy Scriptures, God’s anger fundamentally differs from man’s. It is holy rage. Although God’s wrath can be described similarly to human wrath, the experience of God’s wrath precedes language and has an entirely different source. Man, unlike God, cannot achieve good through anger, nor is man’s offense motivated by good. Anger and wrath of humans arrive like a challenge in The Simulation, and our souls are supposed to overcome it. A man can hardly control his anger, often leading to injustice and murder. Cain gets angry with Abel because he is jealous of him and, in the end, kills his brother (Genesis 4, 1-16). God responds to sinful human anger with his anger. Those who stand in a special relationship with God and together with him and on his behalf, take care of the people can reflect God’s anger in their human anger, like Moses or Jeremiah, who are angry with their compatriots because of their unbelief: “Moses was angry with them” (Exodus 16:20), But I am full of the wrath of the Lord, and I cannot hold it in (Jeremiah 6: 11), or Elijah while killing false prophets: “Then Elijah commanded them, “Seize the prophets of Baal. Don’t let anyone get away!” They seized them, and Elijah had them brought down to the Kishon Valley and slaughtered there” (1 Kings 18, 40). As prophets with a direct link to God through Divine Light, their response is a direct God’s activity in The Simulation. The learning process is thus done, although in an elementary manner.
Recognizing anger in God does not mean questioning His perfection. Wrath and goodness coexist in God without difficulty. But divine and human anger in The Simulation should be clearly distinguished. Human anger in Christian spirituality and morality is one of the main sins. Therefore, anger is always sinful because it is an expression of uncontrolled rage and revenge that brings evil fruits. In contrast, God’s anger guarantees his goodness towards humanity. This distinction will also help St. Augustine to emphasize the existence of God’s anger clearly.
The experience of God by his chosen people can only be understood, starting from the theology of the covenant between God and his people, which is the basic framework for understanding God’s wrath in the Old Testament, and The Simulation in general. Thus, speech about God’s wrath is devoid of the mythological, according to which this wrath would be an expression of blind divine anger, the finger of fate, or even some more potent force than God himself.
There is an anger according to which God acts through souls in a simulated world. In this simulated environment, he defends the people of Israel against the violence and injustice of other peoples, such as the Egyptians, the people in the Promised Land, and those in Assyria and Babylon. A paradigmatic example of this type of anger is given in Moses’ thanksgiving for the deliverance of the people from Egypt: “The people of Canaan will melt away; terror and dread will fall on them. By the power of your arm they will be as still as a stone, until your people pass by, Lord” (Exodus 15: 15-16).
God’s anger is manifested here as human (breath from the nostrils), but it achieves what no human anger can achieve. God’s wrath against enemy nations denotes salvation for Israel and the ultimate sign of God’s faithfulness to Israel. This anger manifests God’s care and concern for his people, who are the least of the nations: “The Lord did not set his affection on you and choose you because you were more numerous than other peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples” (Deuteronomy 7:7). The manifestation of such care is important more than the apparent contradiction. Namely, all souls are under God’s care, and their experiences in The Simulation are predetermined and created with the purpose of learning, experiencing, and attaining God’s characteristics. In a simulated event of God’s wrath against Egyptians and care for Israelis, a broader reading reveals a message. The consequences of God’s wrath for those killed are not an issue: the simulated environment expires, and souls remain intact.
Moses gratefully celebrates God’s wrath as a necessary act of God to weaken the power of the Egyptians and thus open the way for the freedom of the people of Israel from captivity; also, with a new reading from Simulation Creationism, God’s anger toward the Egyptians is a sign and confirmation of God’s faithfulness to the promises of the covenant with the nation that he chose to be in the center of this simulated world, which is not great and can only base its survival on God’s faithfulness to the promises. Therefore, God’s wrath manifests God’s care for his people, the help of which people achieve what is beyond their capabilities in this simulated experience.