"And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free." John 8:32

The justice of God

“Can you imagine the devil?
What did the devil do? He sinned, and what happened? Perfect justice was laid
out before him, and there was no need for an explanation. God is just, he
sinned; justice has been done.

But then there's Adam; sins. Can you imagine the accuser of God?
– O, God, what is this? I sin, and justice! This one, this ball of dirt, rails
against You, You give him a promise? What's happened to Your justice?

O, and Abraham! He's your friend now? Where's Your holiness, God?

O, and Israel, Your people! How many times have they committed idolatry against
You? How many times should they have died?

And David! A man after Your own heart? What's happened to the justice of
God?'” Paul Washer

How Can God Forgive Sin?

What does God's justice demand? Justice demands that the man who sins dies
(eternal damnation) “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is
eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
” (Romans 6:23)

We live in a culture that drinks sin like it was water. No one care about God,
or His law. I mean God forgives, right? So people can just live however way
they want and in the end God will just ‘overlook’ their sins and allows them
into heaven (see justification by death). I mean after all, God is merciful,
right? How can a ‘loving God’ send anyone to hell? Well, God is love for sure,
but He loves His glory more (let that sink in). Also, though the Bible tells us
that God is love (1 John 4:8), it also tells us that He is just (Psa 7:11),
wrathful (John 3:36), He hates (Psa 5:5) and He is holy (Isa 6:3).

We cannot put attributes against each other. God's love doesn’t overshadow His
hatred, nor His mercy overshadow His wrath but rather, the work together. God
loves all that is good, so He hates all that is evil. Do you love babies? Then
you must hate abortion. So no attribute can overshadow another. If God was only
love, the He should also love sin, but that's not what Scripture teaches.

So God's justice cannot be overlooked, it demands that sin should be punished
for it to be satisfied. Man must sufferer the wrath of God for justice to be
satisfied. If God is to forgive man, then non of His attributes must be
overlooked in the process. So how can this be done, how can God forgive sin and
satisfy His wrath at the same time?

Again, let's look at the argument that a ‘loving God’ MUST just forgive sin and
overlook His mercy and wrath. Consider the following incident:

“Lets say you were to go home tonight and find your family had been
slaughtered. You see the assassin standing before the last one of your family
members, standing with a little bit of life in their body. He breaks their
neck, drops them to the floor and laughs. He runs out the door, you run out the
other door, catch him by surprise and knock him out. You bind his hands. The
police come to get this person who has murdered your family and they lock him
away. In due time, they present him before a judge. The judge looks down at the
man who has murdered your entire family and says, “I am a very loving judge. I
pardon you. Go free.” What would your response be?”

If God is to forgive man, One has to voluntarily die for him. And since man
sinned, man must die. But this man should be sinless, in order for Him to be a
sacrifice for someone else. If He has sinned once, He will suffer for Himself.
But, He must also be infinite, because only an infinite being can suffer the
eternal wrath of God in time. And He must be God, since salvation is of the
Lord (cf. Jon 2:9). So we need a sinless, infinite God-Man (see hypostatic
union) who will volunteer to die for man. And this God-Man is the eternal Son
of God, Jesus Christ.

But “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that
whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
(John 3:16)

So what did Jesus do?

“Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed
Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our
transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our
peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have
gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the LORD has laid
on Him the iniquity of us all.” (Isaiah 53:4-6)

He stood in our place, and lived the perfect life we should have lived. And He
died the death we should have died. He lived a perfect life of obedience to
God's law so that the righteous requirements of God law may be fulfilled in us.
His perfect righteousness is becomes imputed to us when we believe in Him (see
the doctrine of imputation). And on the cross, God imputed/laid on Him our
sins, He suffered the eternal wrath of God that we should have suffered in
hell, He drank our cup of wrath.

So instead of overlooking sin, God's wrath is poured out on His Son and His
justice is satisfied. He didn’t overshadow any attribute but He displaced all
of them on the cross. We see God's hatred for sin by looking at the cross. We
see God's love for man by looking at the cross. We see God's justice by looking
at the cross. We see God's holiness by looking at the cross. We see God's
sovereignty by looking at the cross.

So going back to satan's accusations to God, paul washer continues:

“Two-thousand years ago, God gave His answer.

– Do you want to know how I can spare man from the beginning, even with their
father, Adam? Do you want to know how I can call Abraham My friend? Do you want
to know how I can call David a son?

Because there is My Son now, dying for them all.'”

“Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through this Man is
preached to you the forgiveness of sins;” (Acts 13:38)

Forgiveness of sins is only through Christ. Firstly only He is a God-Man,
secondly, only He was sinless and died for others and lastly, He is the ONLY
mediator and way to God (cf. Joh 14:6, 1 Tim 2:5). And there is no forgiveness
of sins after death (cf. Heb 9:27)

How do we receive forgiveness?

“Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so
that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord,” (Acts
3:19)

Repentance and faith is the only way to receive forgiveness. Turning from our
sins to God. Believing in His perfect life, substitutional death and His
resurrection. Turn to Christ and acknowledge Him as Lord. We can’t mand
amendment for our sin. All we must do is believe that He has died for our sins
and repent from them. Jesus alone can save.

Too much of a sinner?

Do you feel like you’re too much of a sinner for God to forgive?

“This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus
came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief.” (1 Timothy 1:15)

The Bible is full of murders, thieves, adulterers etc who received forgiveness
from God. Even the very chief of sinners was forgiven. God is “able to
save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him” (Heb 7:25). He
will forgive and remove all the guilt and make you a new creation with new
desires and affections. Just listen to these promises that God makes to those
who trust in Him:

“”Come now, and let us reason together,” Says the LORD,
“Though your sins are like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow; Though
they are red like crimson, They shall be as wool.” (Isaiah 1:18)

“Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, And cleanse me from my sin.”
(Psalms 51:2)

“Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; Wash me, and I shall be
whiter than snow.” (Psalms 51:7)

“Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, Whose sin is
covered.” (Psalms 32:1)

“He has not dealt with us according to our sins, Nor punished us according
to our iniquities. For as the heavens are high above the earth, So great is His
mercy toward those who fear Him; As far as the east is from the west, So far
has He removed our transgressions from us.” (Psalms 103:10-12)

“In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins,
according to the riches of His grace” (Ephesians 1:7)

“He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the
kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood,
the forgiveness of sins.” (Colossians 1:13-14)

“And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your
flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses,
having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was
contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the
cross.” (Colossians 2:13-14)

What must our attitude be?

“Christ did not die to forgive sinners who go on treasuring anything above
seeing and savoring God. And people who would be happy in heaven if Christ were
not there, will not be there. The gospel is not a way to get people to heaven;
it is a way to get people to God. It's a way of overcoming every obstacle to
everlasting joy in God. If we don’t want God above all things, we have not been
converted by the gospel.” John Piper

Our attitude shouldn’t be that of licentious to sin, but that of praise and
thanksgiving to God for forgiving our sins and taking the punishment on
Himself. “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may
abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in
it?” (Romans 6:1-2)

Conclusion

God forgives sins through repentance and faith in His Son. Since His Son
fulfilled His law and also died in the place and suffering the punishment of
those who trust in Him.

Soli Deo Gloria

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