For a fire is kindled in mine anger, and shall burn unto the lowest hell, and shall consume the earth with her increase, and set on fire the foundations of the mountains. I will heap mischiefs upon them; I will spend mine arrows upon them. They shall be burnt with hunger, and devoured with burning heat, and with bitter destruction: I will also send the teeth of beasts upon them, with the poison of serpents of the dust. The sword without, and terror within, shall destroy both the young man and the virgin, the suckling also with the man of gray hairs. (Deuteronomy 32:22-25)
This is a poetic description of the evils which would be heaped upon Israel in her apostasy and rebellion, when the time of God’s long forbearance had come to an end, and there was no repentance on the part of the chosen people. God taught the people of Israel to sing of the coming wrath, it was part of the national catechism, the Song of Moses, the warning of future apostasy and wrath.
Other parts of Deuteronomy and Leviticus give a more detailed description of the terrors which were to come upon the nation, and which have literally and minutely come to pass down to the smallest detail.
But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day; that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee: Cursed shalt thou be in the city, and cursed shalt thou be in the field. Cursed shall be thy basket and thy store. Cursed shall be the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy land, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep. Cursed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and cursed shalt thou be when thou goest out. The Lord shall send upon thee cursing, vexation, and rebuke, in all that thou settest thine hand unto for to do, until thou be destroyed, and until thou perish quickly; because of the wickedness of thy doings, whereby thou hast forsaken me.(Deuteronomy 28:15-20)
And I will set my face against you, and ye shall be slain before your enemies: they that hate you shall reign over you; and ye shall flee when none pursueth you. And if ye will not yet for all this hearken unto me, then I will punish you seven times more for your sins. And I will break the pride of your power; and I will make your heaven as iron, and your earth as brass:(Leviticus 26:17-19)
He warned Israel that these things would eventually come to pass, not fatalistically, but that each generation might consider and be instructed and spare themselves these evils. Israel’s long, tortured history over these centuries known as the “times of the Gentiles”has born this out that all that the Song of Moses warned them of has indeed come to pass.
First, after long provocation, and in spite of the ministry of Elijah, and Elisha among others, came the carrying away of the ten tribes, never to be seen again, by the Assyrians. Eventually the nightmare destruction of the temple in 70 AD and the subsequent dispersion of Judah into Babylon occurred. Finally When Judah repudiated the LORD himself in the person of her Messiah, Jesus, the long night of sorrow and suffering fell. The Jewish people were scattered to the ends of the earth, the temple was destroyed, and the nations ceased to be an entity until 1948 AD.
All of these terrors are designed to bring about repentance. The Lord would not allow the chosen people to be wiped off of the face of the earth, as Sodom and Gommorah, He has always purposed to preserve for himself a remnant.
And if ye will not be reformed by me by these things, but will walk contrary unto me; Then will I also walk contrary unto you, and will punish you yet seven times for your sins.(Leviticus 26:23-24)
No nation on earth has ever suffered as this nation has. For none have ever had the accountability and light that was given to Israel. To whom much is given, much is required. The curses of the law as recorded in Deuteronomy 28 and Leviticus 26 can be plainly seen as fulfilled prophecy in the centuries of exile, enslavement, persecution, hatred, pograms, wanderings, betrayal, ghettoes,and universal calumny which continues to this day.
The letter to Hebrews admonishes us to fear God accordingly, for Our God is a consuming fire. The Holy fire in God’s being burns fiercely against sin, faithlessness and rebellion. Hellfire originated in God himself! If this is what He does to His own people who have spurned Him, what shall THE LORD do to those who rejected Him outright?
Behold in all of these prophesied plagues and curses the past two thousand years of Jewish History, the Roman dispersion, the subjugation to the Muslims, the terrors of anti-semitic persecution in Europe in the Middle Ages, the blood libels, and the Yellow Stars of Identification, the stereotypical hatred of Jews (Shylock), the Russian and Eastern European experience of the Jews, and recently the Holocaust of Hitler and even Stalin.
This is what it means to be under Divine wrath. Many European Jews say they lost faith in God during the holocaust, how could he have allowed this to happen? But had they truly read Moses, they would see the resonance between what the Song of Moses predicted, and their current situation.
Is it nothing to you, all ye that pass by? behold, and see if there be any sorrow like unto my sorrow, which is done unto me, wherewith the Lord hath afflicted me in the day of his fierce anger. From above hath he sent fire into my bones, and it prevaileth against them: he hath spread a net for my feet, he hath turned me back: he hath made me desolate and faint all the day. (Lamentations 1:12-13)
Yet in the face of all of this ages long death and destruction two shining and hopeful notes ring out;
1) God has never allowed the Jewish people to be utterly wiped out, nor to be assimilated out of existence. He has preserved them as a people as He promised He would, that He might bring them back into the Land in the last days.
Except the Lord of hosts had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been as Sodom, and we should have been like unto Gomorrah.(Isaiah 1:9)
But fear not thou, O my servant Jacob, and be not dismayed, O Israel: for, behold, I will save thee from afar off, and thy seed from the land of their captivity; and Jacob shall return, and be in rest and at ease, and none shall make him afraid.(Jeremiah 46:27)
2) The Lord fulfilled his promise to Abraham, that He would “Bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you…”. History has born out that those who have hated and persecuted the JEws came under Divine wrath also and were utterly destroyed, such as Hitler and the Nazis.