Saturday, September 2, 2017

God Doesn't Mess Around!

Psalm 76
It is you alone who are to be feared.
    Who can stand before you when you are angry?
From heaven you pronounced judgment,
    and the land feared and was quiet—
when you, God, rose up to judge,
    to save all the afflicted of the land.
10 Surely your wrath against mankind brings you praise,
    and the survivors of your wrath are restrained.

This psalm celebrates the great victory of God on behalf of His people.  While God sometimes allowed evil rulers to prosper, he also judged him with His wrath honoring His promise to His chosen people.  He praises the God who can completely defeat any human enemy easily.  All of Creation is used by God when He unleashes His righteous judgment.  The earth quakes and the mountains tremble at his rebuke.   

We don’t often uplift this side of God of God’s character, who judges evil in His time.  Though God is kind and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, there is a time when God judges.  This should cause all people to fear God, but it often doesn’t.   The bible teaches us one day God will judge the living and the dead. In the New Testament God judged sin in a different way.  God judged Jesus as he was led to the cross.  Though Jesus was without sin, He took on the sin of all humankind. God judged him who knew no sin, to be sin for our sake and for our salvation.  The punishment we deserved fell upon Him. 

It is easy for us to get comfortable with the judgment that Jesus took on our behalf. It can cause us to take our sin lightly.  We can get so used to the God of forgiveness and mercy, that we forget the God who judges sin severely.  As the Apostle Paul says in Romans 6, “The wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus.” 

The very essence of living the Christian life is living a life of freedom.  We have been set free from sin, so therefore we have been released from its bondage.  As we truly understand the depth of God’s grace we cannot help but want to live a life of thanksgiving for all God has done for us in Christ!

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