Birthdays and Anniversaries:
None this week
Darlyne Stewart, Karl’s sister, her cancer seems to be under control for the moment.
Shirley Weeks, Steve’s mom, is not well.
Sharon Best, Steven’s mom, still recovering from surgery.
Sarah, Chris Girvin’s sister, on hospice care
Eleuterio Oviedo recovering from knee replacement surgery
Doris Coley, regular listener, also recovering from knee surgery.
Robert and Sue Waller, health issues.
David Shaffer, being treated for leukemia.
Darla Nitti, Wendi’s mom, stage 4 kidney disease, stroke. New living situation!
Leta, has a recurring cancer, prayer request from her granddaughter via our website.
Tammy Jones, Weeks’ neighbor, kidney failure/dialysis
Condolences and Sympathy:
Jesse Chase, Steve’s cousin’s son, passed away this week. Please keep Lisa & Russell Chase and family in your prayers.
Even when driving the speed limit, nervousness erupts upon seeing a police car in the rearview mirror. The predictable behavior might be to slow down another mile per hour or casually change lanes.
If this is true about being within the gaze of an officer, how much more anxiety would arise beneath the scrutiny of a judge. Shift this to the Judge of all the earth and, well … anxiety can go off the charts. So what about the Judge of the whole earth?
From the very beginning, we have had a sense of what is fair. Righteous people should not be destroyed along with the wicked. Therefore Abraham when speaking to the LORD asserted the principle, “Far be that from you! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do what is right?” (Genesis 18:25).
Imagine how horrible it would be to live each day seeking to do good, but then in the final judgment be condemned without good reason. Or imagine being condemned for what others chose to do.
Paul affirmed how every nuance of God’s judgment will be fair. Whereas in this life we might face prejudice from others, there will be no favoritism before God (Romans 2:11). Rather, God’s foundational principle in judging involves giving to each person according to what he or she has done (Romans 2:6). At the end of time we won’t be judged based upon what our social or ethnic groups chose to do.
Paul’s mind pressed further into the details. But how can people who do not know God’s ways know the good they should do or the unrighteousness they should avoid?
God will judge everyone based upon what they knew to be right and wrong. Those who possessed God’s Law will be judged by it (Romans 2:12-13). The rest of humanity will be judged by their conscience, that is by their awareness of right and wrong (Romans 2:14-15). This is fair!
Thus no one will be condemned because they were in the wrong place and never heard God’s message. Rather, condemnation will be issued if someone transgressed what he or she knew to be right. However, such fairness creates a huge problem.
Each of us knows we have transgressed what is right. While we may have chosen to do many good things, we are accountable for everything that violated the good.
This brings us to another characteristic of our Judge. Both the Old and New Testaments teach us the same truth about God. God said, “I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked” (Ezekiel 33:11). Likewise, God does not wish for any to perish (2 Peter 3:9). Not only is God just, God also seeks our wellbeing.
As we are aware, it was out of love that the Judge of all the earth chose to provide a solution for our sinful ways. While God will not corrupt his righteous judgment by turning a blind eye to sin, God has provided his faithful son as our mercy seat, that is, the place Christ’s sprinkled blood redeems us if we will trust in his death (Romans 3:22-26).
Through Christ’s blood, God redeems us making us holy and blameless in his sight. We can receive Christ’s righteousness as a gift enabling us to inherit eternal life.
What will it be like to stand before the Judge? If we are disciples of Jesus sprinkled by his blood, we can have confidence entering into God’s presence (Hebrews 10:19,22). We can stand before the One who loves us and who gave everything in order that we might live.
Our Judge is for us, not against us. Our hearts can be at peace.
Our Judge cares for us. We are OK when God looks at us.