The JudgeJuly 1, 2023 2023-07-01 8:02
5 You, Lord, are forgiving and good,
abounding in love to all who call to you. (NIV)
Dealing with our own imperfection and worse, our sin, can be debilitating. Our hearts flood with shame. Our guilt becomes the masochistic instrument we use to punish ourselves for what we have done. We are our own judge, jury, and executioner.
Well, before we go too far, let’s be reminded of one very important thing: We are not the judge, nor the jury, nor the executioner. In fact, we do not have any authority to condemn sin whether it be our own or anyone else. There is only one judge. We are the accused. Our punishment is out of our hands.
We can’t take our sin back. We can’t undo it. We can’t even cleanse ourselves from it. The Bible is clear that if we say there is no sin in us, we are liars. The best we can do is seek the Holy Spirit’s help to resist temptation. He will help us. We don’t have to sin. And we can put forth effort learning to lean on the Spirit to resist temptation. As we grow in Him, our sin becomes less. Nevertheless, perfect we will never be.
But our Judge is Beautiful in mercy.
We judge ourselves with limited understanding. We see our sin, realize we should have resisted, could have resisted but didn’t. We condemn ourselves. But our Judge, who is also our Lawyer pleads for mercy on the basis that we never chose to be sinful. Our Lawyer, Jesus the Christ, makes the case that we never chose to be infected with sin in the first place.
You never chose to be sinful. The sinful state in which you were born was thrust upon you by the sin of Adam without your consent. This sinful state leads you and me to do things we hate. And our Advocate pleads our case. Then He goes one step further offering his life for ours. The Judge abounding in love and mercy accepts this plea bargain. He unleashes His wrath on His Son. There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
I get it. It is hard to accept, but we must. He has done this for us and by faith, we must appropriate His death on the cross to our sin and guilt. It is the forgiveness we could never earn so that we may never boast. Grace upon grace that we might praise His name forever.
Prayer: Lord, help me to accept God’s forgiveness. And let me not stand in the seat of the Almighty Judge for there is one God and He is not me. Amen.