Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Justice and a pardon offered ........................... Parables 049

The school bus was “speeding” . . . through the school zone!

It was 3:45. Students were still at the crosswalks, on the sidewalks, and walking out of the school.

There wasn’t a police car in sight. All that driver received for his offense was the protest I uttered to my two passengers, a protest that he didn’t even hear. Is This justice?

Justice, according to the dictionary, is the rendering of what is due. It is getting what is deserved, or what is earned. Justice can mean a reward for what is good but we usually think of it as punishment for a crime.

Crimes against God are called sin. The Bible defines these “crimes” in various ways:

  • “Sin is the transgression of the law” 1 John 3:4
  • “All unrighteousness is sin” 1 John 5:17
  • “Whatever is not of faith is sin” Romans 14:23
  • “The thought of foolishness is sin” Proverbs 24:9
  • “He that despises his neighbor sins” Proverbs 14:21
  • “In the multitude of words, sin is not lacking . . . ” Proverbs 10:19
  • “He that knows to do good and doesn’t do it, for him, that is sin” James 4:17
The punishment for sin has also been declared: “The wages of sin is death . . . ” (Romans 6:23) 

This refers not just to physical death, but to spiritual death, which is separation from God forever.
The Bible says that God is perfectly just, but because we are not struck by lightning, or some such thing, when we break His laws, we tend to think that our transgressions don’t really matter to God, that maybe He looks the other way, or doesn’t care.

The cross of Jesus Christ should remind us that our sin matters very much to Him. Sin is such an offense to God that His Son suffered and died for it . . .  that sin had to be punished. God will not be unjust. Someone had to die to pay for it.

I’m sure that if the speeding bus driver had been caught and an innocent person offered to pay his fine or penalty, he would seriously consider the offer. In God’s system of justice, God does just that. The penalty was due and just, but it has been paid in full, by His Son.

Now He offers us pardon and forgiveness as a gift, but He leaves the decision to us. We can reject His offer, or accept it by faith.

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