God's Harsh Punishments for People in the Bible
God Punished People in the Bible
In the Bible, God punished those who consistently disobeyed Him. He punished individuals, their families, and even entire nations, especially in the Old Testament.
There are not that many punishments in the New Testament other than the punishments of Ananias and Sapphira and Herod in the book of Acts
Adam and Eve
In the very first book of the Bible, we see how the first couple was punished for disobeying God by eating from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. In Genesis 3, the woman was beguiled by the serpent. She ate and then gave the forbidden fruit to Adam to eat.
God's first punishments
- God first punished the serpent by having him crawl on his belly the rest of his life. Before then, the serpent stood upright.
- Then the man was punished by having to till the soil and work by the sweat of his brow. Before the punishment, the man had the privilege of staying in the Garden of Eden.
- The woman would be punishment by having labor pain while giving birth.
Cities of Sodom and Gomorrah
There was a lot of evil in cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. The cities were full of rape and other things that were against God. In order to get rid of the bad things that were going on there, God punished both cities by destroying them fire and a rain of burning sulfur.
Lot and his family were allowed to escape when Sodom and Gomorrah were being destroyed. God told them not to look back. Lot and his children did not look back. However, Lot's wife looked back, and her punishment was that she was turned into a pillar of salt, according to Genesis 19:26. The taste of salt is still in that spot today.
Some might think that was an awful punishment for such a simple act, but people must understand that any act of disobedience against God is not just a simple act.
Moses' Harsh Punishment
Moses was not allowed to go into the promised land because of a single act of disobedience, according to Numbers 20:1-13.
Surely, after all the things Moses had done to lead the people out of bondage and through the wilderness, he wanted to go into the promised land with them. Instead, he was punished. Many people thought the punishment was rather harsh.
Moses was told to stand on top of Mount Nebo. There he saw the promised land, but he was not allowed to go into it.
The entire Egyptian army was punished for pursuing the Israelites when they were leaving Egypt. As they were going through the Red Sea, the Egyptian army followed them.
God had opened up the water so his people could go through on dry land. God allowed the army to drown when the water returned to its original state, according to Exodus 14:28.
Aaron's son, Nadab and Abihu, were burned to death because they disobeyed God, according to Leviticus 10:1-3.
They offered a sacrifice with strange fire before the LORD, disobeying his instructions, and were immediately consumed by God’s fire.
Korah's Harsh Punishment
Korah disrespected Moses while they were traveling in the wilderness. Korah claimed to be as holy as Moses and Aaron. Because of what Korah had done, God opened up the earth and Korah and his whole family were swallowed up, according to Numbers 16:27-32.
David's Harsh Punishments
David was a man after God's own heart. However, he was punished more than once.
David counted his men and God punished him, according to 2 Samuel 24:1-17. God gave David three choices, and he had to choose his own punishment.
- three years of famine to the land
- to fled from enemies for three months
- plague in the land for three days
David chose not to fall into human hands. Therefore, he chose for God to send a plague on the land where 70,000 men died.
Another time David was punished was when he wanted to build a temple for God. According to 1 Chronicles 22:8, David was not allowed to build God's temple because he had shed much blood and had fought many wars.
David’s background of shedding blood in times of war was God’s reason for choosing Solomon, David’s son. God wanted a man of peace to construct the temple, not a man of war.
Ananias and Sapphira's Harsh Punishment
According to Acts 5:1-10, a husband and wife cheated God and lied to the Holy Spirit. Therefore they died as a result. They tried to do like Barnabas and sold some land like he did. Barnabas was anointed to do so. Ananias and Sapphira tried to do the same thing. They ended up secretly withholding some of the money instead of giving all of for the Lord's work.
All Ananias was struck dead, his wife had a chance to save herself. However, she lied as well. She, too, was struck dead.
Herod's Harsh Punishment
God's punishments on his people are not always the same. He issues out punishments as he likes.
According to Acts 12:23, Herod failed to praise God. He was struck by an angel and eaten by worms.
Work by sweat of brow
Pain in child birth
Turned into a pillar of salt
Earth swallowed up entire family
Could not go into promised land
Had to choose his own punishment. A plague was on the land, and 70,000 of David's men were killed.
2 Samuel 24:17
Ananias and Sapphira
Death for both of them
Eaten by worms