Justice and Mercy

I am currently taking a course on Ethnicity, Justice and the People of God, by NT Wright and Esau McCaulley from Wheaton College. In one of the lectures McCaulley showed how, in the Bible, God is not just a God of justice, but also of mercy. These two attributes of God’s nature are indispensable in understanding how God operates in our broken world. McCaulley states that the Bible shows clearly that, where there is a lack of justice, God sides with the oppressed. He argues that the people of God should be actively involved in the justice issues, being seen to stand with those who suffer injustice in our day. I think we in the church are beginning to understand that more.

As Easter approaches, I think that there is no better picture of where God’s justice and mercy come together than on Calvary’s cross. There, full restitution for all human sin was exacted. There, full substitution meant all would be spared. God’s perfect justice and mercy meet in the crucifixion of Jesus. This is what God has done, so that all may live in newness of life.

It is so easy to say these words. But their importance cannot be overstated. I am drawn into their depth, humbled, amazed, grateful. And when I look away from the cross, and climb out of the now opened tomb, I cannot help but think of my life differently. I am a new creation, living in a new land, with new purpose.

May we rest and soak in the meaning of Holy Week this year. May the reality of God’s justice and mercy, meeting together on the cross of Jesus, cause each of us to relish the new life we have been given, so that we might be renewed in hope and vigour as God’s own people!  Happy Easter!

- Kevin