Saturday, December 4, 2010

A Righteous Judge - December 4, 2010

Isaiah 11:1-5 (New International Version, ©2010)
1 A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse; from his roots a Branch will bear fruit.

2 The Spirit of the LORD will rest on him — the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the Spirit of counsel and of might, the Spirit of the knowledge and fear of the LORD — 3 and he will delight in the fear of the LORD.

He will not judge by what he sees with his eyes, or decide by what he hears with his ears; 4 but with righteousness he will judge the needy,with justice he will give decisions for the poor of the earth. He will strike the earth with the rod of his mouth; with the breath of his lips he will slay the wicked.

5 Righteousness will be his belt and faithfulness the sash around his waist.

What does it mean to be "fair"? The dictionary would define it as "free from bias, dishonesty, or injustice". Unfortunately that is impossible with man. Unless every judge subjects themselves to the exact same moral authority and law, there will never be judgements that adhere to the definition.

To complicate it even further, now we are faced with several types of law; there is "natural law" given by the God of the Bible, there is "legal positivism" that is defined by the culture, then there is "Sharia law" supposedly given by Allah through the Muslim holy books, and others. With so many different types of law justice varies from one to another, and in many cases, these laws are not "fair".

For instance, there is a Christian women in Pakistan who has been sentenced to death for supposedly sharing her faith in a muslim nation. In fact in most muslim nations, it is punishable by death to practice any other religion other than Islam (so much for being a religion of peace). Coverts to Christianity usually practice their faith in secret, for fear of being caught and executed. Now according to Sharia, that is a "just and fair" punishment, but in any other rational society and under any other law that punishment is ridiculous and irrational.

Here again, the prophet Isaiah points us to "the coming" of the righteous judge, who will give out justice fairly and without bias. He will treat all with fairness and honesty. Only God can do that. Fallen mankind is incapable for doing so, because their hearts are corrupt and immoral. They judge based on their own needs, interests and attitudes. That is what had been so wonderful about the laws in our United States. They had been drawn together with the God of the Bible in mind, and I believe by men empowered by the Holy Spirit, to create an exceptional nation.

Someday soon, each and everyone, those before us and after us, will stand before the righteous judge. He will judge all of the nations, and give out justice that is deserved. If we are judged by what we deserve, we all would perish, but because our judge has come first as our Lord and Savior, and has offered himself as payment for our wrongdoing. Accept God's gift to you before you have to stand before Him in judgement.

2 Corinthians 5:10 (New International Version, ©2010)
10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each of us may receive what is due us for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.

Follow me on my Advent journey as I travel the path that God has prepared for us back to Himself. Follow the path of "the coming" of our Lord and Savior Jesus.

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