Dec 3, 2017
Justice and Mercy
21 But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it--
22 the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction:
23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
25 whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God's righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins.
26 It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.
The sinful condition of mankind presents us with a dilemma: How can a holy, righteous God forgive our sins? If He deals with us only on the basis of His justice, every human being would suffer the eternal punishment of His wrath, which their sins deserve. But if He extends mercy instead of justice, no one would pay the penalty for sin, and God would then cease to be just.
There was only one way the Lord could stay true to His nature and at the same time forgive our sins. The solution was to satisfy His justice by pouring out His wrath on a substitute. Then the penalty for sin would be paid, and He would be free to extend mercy to sinners. This is the only plan that accommodates both aspects of His divine nature. So Christ came as our substitute; He took the punishment for our sin, enabling us to experience the Fatherís mercy. Now, by placing faith in Jesus, anyone can be justified--that is, declared legally righteous.
Godís plan of salvation is simple enough for a child to understand. Yet at the same time, the complexities of the transaction that occurred at Calvary are far beyond human comprehension. Although we may not fully grasp what transpired there, we can know that the cross is the greatest possible display of the Lordís love for us.
Can you even imagine the cost of your salvation? The magnificent plan of the Father and the willing cooperation of the Son prove your tremendous value in Godís eyes. From His perspective, you are worth all the pain and suffering that was necessary to secure your eternal presence with Him in heaven.