East Martin CRC
Our Friend, Justice
Psalm 119: 73-80
Verses 77-78 Let Your compassion come to me that I may live, for Your law is my delight. May the arrogant be put to shame for wronging me without cause; but I will meditate on Your precepts.
The psalmist, having dealt with God’s discipline of him now remembers that God’s love is so pure that He disciplines His children but punishes those who are the children of the enemy.
We talked the other day about how some of the discipline that comes from God includes those around us who aren’t of the people of God. He allows, and may even use, other people to do things that will benefit us in the end if we allow God to use them for His glory. Things that we go through in our life are all used for our spiritual growth and we need to accept that and look at our situation to see how God may be wanting to use it. Of course, this isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when we are dealing with difficulties in life.
The psalmist reminds the Lord in this prayer that he delights in the law and asks for compassion for himself before continuing on to ask the Lord for His justice on those who are arrogant against the law. He isn’t asking for them to be punished solely because of their treatment of the psalmist. The psalmist understood that their abuse of him was due to their lack of love of the law. They didn’t care for God and His law and therefore wrongly treated the Lord’s man who loved the law.
The song writer is acknowledging that the Lord doesn’t overlook what is going on in our lives. He was pointing out that he knew God would not discipline His own people and allow others to live as they wish with no consequences. God is just and that is why He gave the law in the first place. This justness must be satisfied with justice or mercy.
God’s just character is something that we need to appreciate. It is His justice that caused Him to send Jesus to die to pay for our sins and it is His justice that should comfort us when we think about those who persecute us and other Christians. While God shows us His mercy through His choice to make a substitute for our punishment, there are those who aren’t given that substitute and therefore will receive His judgment and punishment. While this may seem harsh in our human understanding it should bring us comfort. His justice means He will do as He says and that means we can trust Him in every way.
Making It Personal
Does it comfort you to know that God is a God of justice? Does knowing He showed you mercy change your view of your sin? Is your sin worth a distancing in your relationship with the Lord?
Making It Personal Kids
Why did Jesus have to die on the cross? Does that change how you think about sin? Does sinning hurt your relationship with Jesus?
Father, we are in awe of You. Your justice is more than our human minds can comprehend but You have created us with a sense of justice that reflects You in our lives. Thank You for Your mercy. Help us be just in our dealings with others while leaving the punishment up to You. In Jesus’ name, amen.