I've been contemplating lately the idea of God's mercy versus his justice. We all fully embrace the concept of His mercy and love. We seem to have no philosophical issue with that. Yet, it seems as though His justice is forgotten and even defamed in our culture today. But why? None of us vacillate in demanding justice when it benefits us, when it rights those wrongs done to us. We are satisfied when the rapist is sent to jail. We are mollified when the child abuser is locked away to pay for his crimes. Would anyone argue that demanding retribution for such crimes against innocent victims is unloving or unkind?
But God? His name is treated as a curse; His holy nature and character brought to trial by those who despise Him; His children hated, tortured, and martyred. Does God deserve justice? Does the Perfect One who breathed the very life into us deserve recompense? Or do we think we are more important than God, holier than God? It is permissible for us to demand justice. We deserve it. But God is supposed to be all love to all people in all circumstances...and nothing more. He is expected to just overlook all the wrongs and offenses and turn a deaf ear to His children's cries and a blind eye to the evildoers who mock His holy name.
I don't want a one-dimensional God who is unable to impart justice when such justice is the only right course of action. I want the God who both embraces and condemns. This is the God who makes sense, the God of the Bible who loves enough to judge...and yet is always willing to extend mercy even to those who fall under His judgment. That is the God that I love.