Psalm 94:1-2: “O Lord, God of vengeance, O God of vengeance, shine forth! Rise up, O judge of the earth; repay to the proud what they deserve!”
When I read this stern appeal to God’s justice I’m tempted to feel one of two things: fear or doubt. First, I’m tempted to feel afraid: O Lord, if you’re avenging, judging, and “repaying the proud,” who am I that you would make an exception in my case? After all, is anyone as proud as I am? But if I’m not afraid, should I then doubt God’s Word? After all, the Bible seems to teach that God’s commitment to justice is absolute—that it’s part of his nature, that for God to deny justice is to deny himself.
So… can the Bible be trusted?
But here’s where the cross of Christ comes in: It reveals both God’s perfect love (Romans 5:8) and his perfect justice (Romans 3:26). In other words, on the cross, God did not choose love over justice; rather, the cross vindicates justice. The penalty for all my sins—past, present, and future—was paid (Colossians 2:13-14). My sins are “forgiven and forgotten” (Psalm 103:12; Isaiah 43:25; Hebrews 8:12).
So this startling good news follows: God is just when he forgives me! Indeed, it would now be unjust for God to revoke his forgiveness and find me guilty—or else he would punish my sins twice.
Why have I never considered this before? Am I only just now understanding the objective substitutionary atonement that I’ve professed to believe for years?
Better late than never! #ESVJournalingBible #BibleJournaling