A just God

For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps. He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth.When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly. (1 Peter 2:21-23 ESV)

What do we need to do to be able to follow Christ’s steps and not retaliate nor threaten? We need to be still because God is God; because He judges justly.

The Bible is clear, God judges everyone according to their deeds. He punishes who needs to be punished and avenges who need to be avenged. He is just and fair. But what about all those situations where you were abused, wronged and nothing happened? The persons involved have just kept living their lives as if nothing ever happened. From injustices to abuses, we tend to take things into our own hands. We stop entrusting ourselves to the one who judges justly and start doing what Jesus didn’t do: we retaliate, avenge ourselves or threaten.

The NLT version says that Jesus “left his case in the hands of God, who always judges fairly.” But it is difficult to leave what matters to us into the hands of someone who seems at best indifferent and at worst unjust. So to follow Jesus’ step we need to believe, to trust God when He says that He is just, and this will motivate us to be still and wait on Him, instead of retaliating. Why? Because to believe that God is just is to believe that:

  1. He cannot tolerate wrongdoing  (Habakkuk 1:13).
  2. He will punish every wrongdoing in a way or other.
  3. He will judge our own wrongdoings, even if they are done in response to evil done to you.

Peter says it clearly: “And if you call on him as Father who judges impartially according to each one’s deeds, conduct yourselves with fear throughout the time of your exile.” (1 Peter 1:17 ESV).

On one hand, entrusting ourselves to God, putting our cases into His care or protection, is a matter of trust (trust in His justice, and of course in His love and care), and on the other hand, it is a matter of fear of the Lord (because we were ransomed with the precious blood of Christ, 1 Peter 1:17-19). Sometimes, it is easy to think that to fear the Lord means only avoiding immorality or other ‘big’ sins. But to fear the Lord means also to trust Him, because not to trust him means questioning who He is, denying His divinity, what makes Him who He is.  So, if you fear God, you trust him; if you trust  Him, you fear Him (because you believe He is who He says He is), and you let Him take care of your case, even if it means waiting until the judgment day, or

Yes, it is difficult, but remember, He is:

The Rock, his work is perfect, for all his ways are justice. A God of faithfulness and without iniquity, just and upright is he.” (Deuteronomy 32: 4)

 

 

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Never tired, always bathing in goodness

Where would I be if I did not believe I would experience the Lord’s favor in the land of the living? (Psalm 27:13 NET)

Sometimes you read a verse times after times and you don’t get this little thing that is obvious and makes a big difference. Then in a time of dire need, God stops you and makes you get it; actually more than just getting it, He feeds you with it. His Word becomes food for you. And for me, the verse above is one of those.

The part translated “Where would I be” is also translated “I would have despaired”, I had fainted”. What God is telling us here is that the only way not to be tired, weary, exhausted, not to faint and despair is to believe that we will experience His favor, His goodness; that He will do us good.

The only being who never gets tired is God. All of us, young, old, super spiritual and weak get tired one day. And it is normal. The Christian life is filled with trials, difficulties, challenges and many other things that steal our strength, our energy, our joy, our hope, etc. God knew it and provided us with the perfect solutions: to believe He will be good to us. When you believe in His goodness, His strength becomes your strength.

What does it mean to believe in His goodness for you? It means that you are so sure that He is for you, so sure that He will never leave you nor forsake you, so sure that His faithfulness, mercy, and grace will follow you all the days of your life that you wait upon Him, you wait for His help. You don’t fret nor get worried, but stay still because He is your God.

How do you know that you are doing those? Well, if your strength is renewed, if you walk without getting tired, then you are waiting upon Him. If you run without growing weary, if you feel that you are soaring like eagles, then you are waiting for His help.

If you don’t feel that way, if you feel tired and exhausted inside, if your spiritual strength is gone, you are not believing that He will be good to you. Let me put it that way: If God is the Ruler of the universe and He is for you, why would you run around panicked, worried, or frustrated? You would simply wait for Him and keep doing His will, knowing that everything is taken care of, knowing that you are taken care of.

Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is an eternal God, the creator of the whole earth. He does not get tired or weary; there is no limit to his wisdom. He gives strength to those who are tired; to the ones who lack power, he gives renewed energy. Even youths get tired and weary; even strong young men clumsily stumble. But those who wait for the Lord’s help find renewed strength; they rise up as if they had eagles’ wings, they run without growing weary, they walk without getting tired.” (Isaiah 40: 28- 31 (NET))

He is just… God

Praise Him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness. Psalm 150:2

 

The thing I prefer about God is that He is God. I like the fact that He is above humanity, that He is different from us and beyond us. Even if it is sometimes difficult to live with, I like that we cannot fully understand Him.

Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! Romans 11:33

The Almighty is beyond our reach and exalted in power; in his justice and great righteousness, he does not oppress. Job 37:23

Great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom. (Psalm 145:3)

He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. Ecclesiastes 3:11

Then I saw all that God has done. No one can comprehend what goes on under the sun. Despite all their efforts to search it out, no one can discover its meaning. Even if the wise claim they know, they cannot really comprehend it. Ecclesiastes 8:17

As you do not know the path of the wind, or how the body is formed in a mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the work of God, the Maker of all things. Ecclesiastes 11:5

All this also comes from the LORD Almighty, whose plan is wonderful, whose wisdom is magnificent. Isaiah 28:29

Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. Isaiah 40:28

Yes, we cannot fathom God’s greatness. And that’s why Him alone is God (Psalm 86:10). And that’s what I need to remember when I don’t understand, when I don’t agree with His decisions for my life, when His timing is different for mine, when life is ugly. I need the Holy Spirit to remind me that He has made everything beautiful in its time. Then I need to decide to trust Him for the past, the present and the future and to wait for His time. (Habakkuk 2:3).

While waiting…

Yes, Lord, walking in the way of your laws, we wait for you;
your name and renown are the desire of our hearts.
Isaiah 28:8

Yesterday I read this verse on Facebook and it was like a revelation. Those days I have been confused, kind of lost in my walk with the Lord. I have been praying for clarity,  for guidance and for more. And when I read that verse, my heart reacted in a particular way. The way that says: ” I recognize the voice of my Lord. He is speaking to me now, telling something particular, just for me.”

This verse completely describes the state of my heart. I am here, walking in God’s ways, waiting for Him. I am waiting for Him because His name and His glory are the desire of my hearts. I don’t know how long I am going to wait, but I am in a good place, walking in the ways of His laws. Instead of being confuse, I can be content. I am spending time on His path, with Him. And to linger in it is not a bad thing. I am not there because He does not love me or because He wants to punish me. I am there because He grants me seek Him and His glory. To Him be all praises and all glory.

We’re content to linger in the path sign-posted with your decisions.
Who you are and what you’ve done are all we’ll ever want. Isaiah 28:8 (Msg)