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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : Your thoughts on The Must of God's justice?

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Joined: 2007/1/30
Posts: 926

 Your thoughts on The Must of God's justice?

I wrote this tonight as a meditation prompted by a line in Spurgeon's [i]All of Grace[/i]. I would appreciate your thoughts about the doctrine contained.

You can comment here, or on my blog:

[b]The [i]Must[/i] of God's Justice[/b]

You have heard it said before, [i]God must punish sin[/i]. Have you asked yourself why He must?

In stating that [i]God must punish sin[/i], one should not take the word [i]must[/i] to suggest that God is somehow subordinate to any law or power separate and greater than Himself, for there is no such thing. God is not required by someone besides Himself to deal out justice. He who is alone infinite and sovereign can not be made subject in His divinity to anything finite.

Some persons have erred in believing that [i]God must punish sin[/i] merely because He has previously sworn to, and He cannot go back upon His word. This may at first seem like fair reasoning, but the idea contains a shadowed suggestion that perhaps, under certain conditions, God might not entirely want to punish sin; that He only does so to protect His integrity as an honest being. This faulty notion paints God as no more authoritative than Ahasuerus, king of the Medes and Persians, who was bound by his own irrevocable laws.

As with all analogies, the side in error is more easily illustrated. Therefore, I ask your patience with my simple picture. The correct sense in which [i]God must punish sin[/i] is comparable to the way in which young lovers [i]must[/i] express their affections one to another, or as the faces of pious men [i]must[/i] reveal disapproval to hear the irreverent words of blasphemers. These responses are not the result of external obligations, but are rather moral compulsions that rise naturally from the character of the hearts from which they flow.

Even so, the sense in which [i]God must punish sin[/i] is rooted in the unchanging nature of God. His judgments rush forth from the pure spring of His pristine moral Being. From out of that aspect of the Creator's holiness which we call His justice, flows a mighty river of judgments which reveal God's righteous compulsion to demonstrate retributive wrath upon whatsoever opposes His own nature. The [i]Must[/i] of God's justice proceeds immediately from His inexhaustible Self and is energized with the same enthusiasm and potency by which stars were drafted and the cosmos framed. He is as necessarily zealous to express Himself in retribution as He has shown Himself to be in the acts of creation. Consider this power wielded against mortal men!

This is another reason why the plan of redemption according to grace is so remarkable to me. The same God who so ardently condemns and revenges sin is as well the architect of a salvific system based upon freely and graciously justifying sinners. In doing so, God has magnified His kindness even above His wrath and revealed more of His compassion than His anger. You may ask, how can this be? How has He shown His kindness more? Consider it carefully, friend. Though souls languish in hell for ten-thousands of years, still the full extent of God's just wrath is never demonstrated upon them, hence the damned shall suffer everlastingly. The lost shall descend ever deeper into a pit of un-payable debt. Yet Christ's atonement upon the cross was so complete and perfect that it adequately satisfied the everlasting debt of all who come to Him. That His sacrifice was accepted is proof that the sum of His suffering outweighs the value of the wrath which was upon those sinners for whom He died. Only this display of infinite love could exceed the outpouring of finite-unto-everlasting wrath. Therefore in the death of Christ His kindness towards the saints is demonstrated more fully than His wrath upon the damned.

 2007/10/30 4:35Profile

Joined: 2007/1/30
Posts: 926

 Re: Your thoughts on The Must of God's justice?

One time bump since I posted this at 1:30 AM when almost no one was on. ;-)

 2007/10/30 20:57Profile

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