Thursday, June 21, 2012

God's Justice...Why So Slow?

The Lord is slow to anger and great in power,
And will not at all acquit the wicked.
~ Nahum 1:3 
This morning during my devotional time...I gave thought to considering why God is so slow to respond to the growing number of sins that humankind has embraced. It seems to me that the satisfying and fulfilling life God offers us and allows us to share in fellowship with Him has too easily been forgotten or set aside as we seek and pursue happiness in the things of this world and in people. 
When faced with making choices to either follow God’s commandments which may seem hard but are designed to feed and satisfy our very souls; people are choosing to follow Deceit...which seems easy and dresses itself as wisdom and fulfillment...yet leaves people hungry and thirsting for something more.
I does God remain calm towards the many whose sins continue to prevail in this world and are against His commands and press against His children? So many people are accepting the world’s false idols and even embracing sins which distort God’s truth and camouflages His love.
For those of us who rely on Christ as our Guide and are found resisting the enticement to accept the world’s sins which God has called unholy... refusing to take a bite from Deceit’s apple...we are considered as “out of touch” and ignorant . Although our words are salted with the love of Jesus and our actions are filtered through the Lord’s guidance to follow God’s commands...we are found by the world’s view of justice as guilty of being hateful and intolerant people.
Feeling tired from this emotional dilemma with sin ...I took my yet unread devotional in hand as I walked outside, looking for a new perspective. The fresh cool morning air gave way to a soft wind that rustled leaves in the trees as I breathed in the beauty of my garden. As I gave thanks to God for all His mercy... my heart became broken again towards the struggles all of us have with sin...along with a gentle prayer for God’s Truth to prevail over Deceit’s lies. I couldn’t help but wonder and ask:. “Abba...Father, if this upsets must you feel?”  

While surrounded by the beauty of my backyard garden...I opened my devotion and began to read what was written by Charles Spurgeon over a hundred years ago. In His words I immediately found God’s answer to my troubling thoughts. 

I imagined the vastness and beauty of the Garden of Eden where God first reveals how He responds to sin. His response to Adam reveals His heart of great love...and it reveals as well that His too prevails.

Please read this beautiful description of what it may have been like for God that sad day when He sought Adam in the garden: 

“Have you ever observed that scene in the garden of Eden at the time of the fall God had threatened Adam, that if he sinned he should surely die. Adam sinned: did God make haste to sentence him? ‘Tis sweetly said, “The Lord God walked in the garden in the cool of the day.” Perhaps that fruit was plucked at early morn, maybe it was plucked at noon-tide; but God was in no haste to condemn; he waited till the sun was well nigh set, and in the cool of the day came, and as an old expositor has put it very beautifully, when he did come he did not come on wings of wrath, but he “walked in the garden in the cool of the day.” 
He was in no haste to slay. I think I see him, as he was represented then to Adam, in those glorious days when God walked with man. I think I see the wonderful similitude in which the unseen did veil himself: I see it walking among the trees so slowly—if it is right to give such a picture—beating its breast, and shedding tears that it should have to condemn man. 
At last I hear its doleful voice: “Adam, where art thou? Where hast thou cast thyself, poor Adam? Thou hast cast thyself from my favor; thou hast cast thyself into nakedness and into fear; for thou art hiding thyself. Adam, where art thou? I pity thee. 
You thought to be God. Before I condemn thee I will give thee one note of pity. Adam, where art thou?” Yes, the Lord was slow to anger, slow to write the sentence, even though the command had been broken, and the threatening was therefore of necessity brought into force.”   ~Charles Spurgeon
“Thank you Lord Jesus for the cross. Because of the free gift of grace that cost you so much...You promise that everyone who places their trust in you will live again after they die, and to live forever with You. This astonishing promise has great power to give us hope. Who are we that our Father is mindful of us? That God would hold back His anger and patiently wait...desiring that none would be lost to the saving grace He offers?
As Christians we never need to fear death – and can actually look forward to it as a blessing from you... knowing it ushers us into God’s presence and a wonderful life throughout eternity.
I love you your Name I give all my praise and give all glory and honor. Amen”

There are good and bad ways of taking advantage of God’s apparent slowness... (2 Peter 3:3,4,9).

Suggested Further Reading on God’s mercy and prevailing justice: Nehemiah 9:9-31
"I tell you the truth, whoever hears what I say and believes in the One who sent me has eternal life. That person will not be judged guilty but has already left death and entered life."          ~John 5:24 (NCV)

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