Quotes about God-Justice
In the day that we stand before our Master and Maker, it will not matter how many people on earth knew our name, how many called us great, and how many considered us fools. It will not matter whether schools and hospitals were named after us, whether our estate was large or small, whether our funeral drew ten thousand or no one. It will not matter what the newspapers or history books said or didn’t say. What will matter is one thing and one thing only – what the Master thinks of us.
God does not exalt His mercy at the expense of His justice. And in order to maintain His justice, all sin without exception must be punished. Contrary to popular opinion, with God there is no such thing as mere forgiveness. There is only justice.
God’s justice is inflexible. Justice may be defined as rendering to everyone according to one’s due. Justice means we get exactly what we deserve – nothing more, nothing less. In our human system of justice a tension often exists between justice and mercy. Sometimes one prevails at the expense of the other. But there is no tension with God. Justice always prevails. God’s justice must be satisfied; otherwise His moral government would be undermined.
Paul says in Romans 12:19 that we are not to take revenge, and the reason is precisely that we should not expect God not to take revenge. Do not take revenge, Paul says because God most certainly will.
The only natural argument of any weight, for the immortality of the soul, takes its rise from this observation, that justice is not extended to the good, nor executed upon the bad, man in this life; and that, as the Governor of the world is just, man must live hereafter to be judged.
In the past, God had left sins unpunished. He could conceivably be accused of overlooking sin since He had not required punishment for it. Now, however, He has put forth Jesus. This proves that God is just (His wrath required the sacrifice) and that He is the justifier of those who have faith in Jesus (His love provided the sacrifice for them).
[God saved us] without breaking the law of justice or canceling its demands. What He did in love was to satisfy its demands. The demands of justice were not ignored or canceled. They were fully satisfied. And the only way that God could do that was by having His spotless Son take the punishment that was due to us. What we see here is an amazing love. He did for us what we could not do for ourselves. We call this grace, the result of which is salvation.
The Cross Challenges Humanistic Self-Sufficiency by Ajith Fernando taken from The Supremacy of Christ by Ajith Fernando, copyright 1995, Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers, Wheaton Illinois 60187, www.crosswaybooks.org, p. 143.
Only the Christian gospel presents….a way in which justice and mercy kiss each other… First, Christianity confirms the fact that justice must be satisfied. Sin must be condemned according to its demerit. This means eternal doom. The sinner must be damned because God must be inexorably holy and just. His all-powerful Being must vindicate His all-holy Being. Christianity never compromises the ever-blessed purity and excellency of the divine nature. Second, Christianity alone finds a way to satisfy infinite justice and provide infinite mercy at the same time. What no other religion has dreamed of, Jesus Christ has accomplished. He underwent the infinite wrath of God against sin and lived to bestow His mercy on the damned sinners for whom He died. The infinite Son of God took upon Himself a human nature in which He underwent the full fury of the divine wrath. The omnipotent God satisfied His violated holiness by punishing sin completely in His blessed Son, who “became sin” for His people. The justice of God was vindicated in full in the substitute, His own Son, our Saviour dear. He survived that awful vengeance and rose victor over the grave by the power of His own divinity. Now He offers to every sin-sick and “pleasure” – burdened soul an everlasting mercy. Perfect mercy and perfect justice in the gospel of the crucified.
If we recognize degrees of heinousness between a crime against one human being and another, we can see that the difference between a crime against a human and against the divine Being as infinite, and requires an infinitely more severe punishment.
If there is such a thing as sin, there is such a thing as crime, a specific form of sin. And if we all agree that there is such a thing as crime, or sin, then it deserves punishment… [But] in the opinion of many, not only does crime not deserve punishment, but punishment is the crime.
So in the presentation of Scripture the cause of election lies in God, and the cause of reprobation lies in the sinner. Another important difference is that the ground of election is God’s grace, whereas the ground of reprobation is God’s justice.
God is not only perfectly holy, but the source and pattern of holiness: He is the origin and the upholder of the moral order of the universe. He must be just. The Judge of all the earth must do right. Therefore it was impossible by the necessities of His own being that He should deal lightly with sin, and compromise the claims of holiness. If sin could be forgiven at all, it must be on the basis which would vindicate the holy law of God, which is not a mere code, but the moral order of the whole creation.
If a doctor, able to help, were at the side of a sick person and promised to help him from his trouble and advised him how to combat his ailment or the poison he had taken, and if the sick person knew that the doctor could help him but nonetheless said: Oh, get out, I won’t accept your advice; you are no doctor, but a highwayman; I am not sick, nor have I taken poison; it will not hurt me; and if the sick person wanted to kill the doctor, would you not say that this fellow, who persecuted and wanted to kill his doctor, was not only sick but demented, mad, and irrational as well?… But this spiritual madness – that we do not want to accept help when God’s Son wants to help us – is ten times worse. Should our Lord God not be angry and let hellfire, sulfur, and pitch rain upon such ingrates? For besides being sinners, we are also so wretched as to reject help and chase away and kill those who urge us to accept it.
Since God is a just Judge, we must love and laud His justice and thus rejoice in God even when He miserably destroys the wicked in body and soul; for in all this His high and inexpressible justice shines forth. And so even hell, no less than heaven, is full of God and the highest Good. For the justice of God is God Himself; and God is the highest Good. Therefore even as His mercy, so His justice or judgment must be loved, praised, and glorified above all things.
Night and day I pondered until I saw the connection between the justice of God and the statement that “the just shall live by his faith.” Then I grasped that the justice of God is that righteousness by which through grace and sheer mercy God justifies us through faith. Thereupon I felt myself to be reborn and to have gone through open doors into paradise.
The kind of love that animates the inclusivist god is more akin to sentimentalism than God’s holy affection. If love means God abandons all of His other attributes, then love itself is deified. The love of God does not dictate that He abandon His justice or holiness. In fact, the glory of the gospel is that God is both just and justifier of the ungodly. God does not allow unregenerate sinners to do as they will, worship what they wish, live as they please, and still go free. In the divine scheme of things, sin demands punishment. The rebellion of self-worship requires wrath. Yet, the God of wrath is no less than the God of mercy. He is the same God. Were God never to have offered salvation to any sinner, His love would still survive unblemished. The reality and riches of God’s love is not measured in the number of person’s saved, but in the magnificence of the attribute itself.
All caricatures of God which ignore His intense hatred for sin reveal more about man than about God. In a moral universe God must of necessity oppose evil.
Take note that when men oppress and persecute most unjustly, yet there is cause to justify God in suffering it to be so. God’s justice is executed upon us by their injustice; if men falsely accuse us, yet God can truly charge us. When Job has to deal with men, he maintains his integrity against their accusations, Job 27:4-6, but when he has to deal with God, he acknowledges his sin, and will not stand upon his own justification; he will not plead but supplicate (John Oldfield).
We must learn of divine justice from the Bible itself. It will not do to protest God’s revealed judgments on the basis of what seems fair or unfair to us. Instead, we must adjust our thinking, including our view of God’s justice, to God’s revealed truth.
The good news is that God Himself has decreed a way to satisfy the demands of His justice without condemning the whole human race. Hell is one way to settle accounts with sinners and uphold his justice. But there is another way. The wisdom of God has ordained a way for the love of God to deliver us from the wrath of God without compromising the justice of God. And what is this wisdom? The death of the Son of God for sinners!
God’s holiness and righteous glory have been desecrated, defamed, and blasphemed by our sin. It is with a holy God that we have to do in our guilt! And there can be no justification, no reconciliation, no cleansing of our conscience, unless the holiness of God is honored and the defamation of His righteousness is repaired. The urgency of our problem with guilt is not that we feel miserable, but that God’s name has been blasphemed. We live in a day with such a horrendously inflated view of human potential and such a miserably tiny view of God’s holiness that we can scarcely understand what the real problem of guilt is. The real problem is not, “How can God be loving and yet condemn people with such little sins?” The real problem is, “How can God be righteous if He acquits such miserable sinners as we?” There can be no lasting remedy for guilt which does not deal with God’s righteous indignation against sin. That’s why there had to be a sacrifice. And not just any sacrifice, but the sacrifice of the Son of God! No one else, and no other act, could repair the defamation done to the glory of God by our sins. But when Jesus died for the glory of the Father, satisfaction was made. The glory was restored. Righteousness was demonstrated. Henceforth it is clear that when God, by grace, freely justifies the ungodly (Romans 4:5), He is not indifferent to the demands of justice. It is all based on the grand transaction between the Father and the Son on the morning of Good Friday at Calvary. No other gospel can take away our guilt because no other gospel corresponds to the cosmic proportions of our sin in relation to God.
God is not unjust. No one will be condemned for not believing a message they have never heard. Those who have never heard the gospel will be judged by their failure to own up to the light of God’s grace and power in nature and in their own conscience.
Ultimately, God is the One who will right all wrongs. Vengeance is lawlessness because it does not recognize the lawful and righteousness execution of God’s judgment which He will bring about in His time. In other words, vengeance amounts to being impatient with God. You must remember that wrongs cannot always be righted immediately.
Social ethics must never be substituted for personal ethics. Crusading can easily become a dodge for facing up to one’s lack of personal morality. By the same token, even if I am a model of personal righteousness, that does not excuse my participation in social evil. The man who is faithful to his wife while he exercises bigotry toward his neighbor is no better than the adulterer who crusades for social justice. What God requires is justice both personal and social.
[God] has no malice in His purity, no maliciousness in His actions. God does not “delight” in the death of the wicked – even though He decrees it. His judgments upon evil are rooted in His righteousness, not in some distorted malice in His character. Like an earthly judge weeps when he sends the guilty for punishment, God rejoices in the justness of it but gets no glee from the pain of those justly punished.
God is not obligated to save anybody, to make any special act of grace, to draw anyone to Himself. He could leave the whole world to perish, and such would be a righteous judgment.
I feel that if God should smite me now, without hope or offer of mercy, to the lowest hell, I should only have what I justly deserve; and I feel that if I be not punished for my sins, or if there be not some plan found by which my sin can be punished in another, I cannot understand how God can be just at all: how shall he be Judge of all the earth, if he suffer offenses to go unpunished?"
A God who could pardon without justice might one of these days condemn without reason.
Throughout eternity the lost soul will be testifying to this truth: “God is holy; I was a sinner; I rejected His salvation, I turned my back upon His gospel, I despised His Son, I hated God Himself, I lived in my sins, I loved my sins, I died in my sins, and now I am lost to all eternity! And God is righteous in my condemnation!”