THE SERVANT GENERAL
OUR THEME FOR 2016
MERCY AND JUSTICE - 2
“The Lord is just in all his ways, merciful in all his
works.” (Ps 145:17). Justice and mercy go together.
But is not justice exacting the punishment that is deserved,
while mercy is not exacting the punishment that is deserved?
Well, God is both about justice and mercy. He is merciful
and will always desire to extend His mercy, but He is also
just and will have to punish those who refuse His mercy. And
so as God is both just and merciful, it is now up to us what
we are to experience.
is an invitation to repentance. It is God saying “to
the prisoners: Come out! To those in darkness: Show yourselves!”
(Is 49:9a). It is God manifesting His great love for sinners.
“For he who pities them leads them and guides them beside
springs of water.” (Is 49:10b). It is God who continues
to call on those who have strayed and reaped the consequences
of their transgressions. “For the Lord comforts his
people and shows mercy to his afflicted.” (Is 49:13b).
But if we refuse to turn from our evil ways, then we refuse
God’s mercy, then we reap the consequences.
does not want to punish us, for we are His beloved children.
The Lord is “loving in all his works.” (Ps 145:13c).
But if we go on the wrong path, then punishment is just what
is needed to bring us back. Justice is precisely a function
of God’s mercy. “The Lord is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger and abounding in mercy.” (Ps 145:8).
then are we to experience God’s mercy? We put our faith
in Jesus and obey his word. Then we move from the darkness
of sin to life in him. “Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever
hears my word and believes in the one who sent me has eternal
life and will not come to condemnation, but has passed from
death to life.” (Jn 5:24).
then is an invitation to heaven. There will be a final judgment,
and people will go separate ways, “those who have done
good deeds to the resurrection of life, but those who have
done wicked deeds to the resurrection of condemnation.”
(Jn 5:29). It will be our choice. What can assure us of heaven
is God’s mercy.