November 19, 2007
It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. Hebrews 10:31
When I was a teenager, I appeared before a judge. If you were to ask me why I was there, I honestly couldn’t tell you. To the best of my knowledge it was a speeding ticket. On the other hand, I can recall, with perfect clarity how I felt going before the judge that day: I was scared.
I was sweaty-hands, pacing-the-room scared. To be put into the hands of someone you don’t know, and not have any idea of how he is going to decide your fate or future is a frightening proposition. I think most of the Daily Devotion readers/listeners would agree with that.
Imagine how you would have felt if you had been asked to appear before Judge Shull who was a Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court Judge in Gate City, Virginia. According to those who were there that day, after some parents couldn’t come to an agreement about Christmas visitation rights, the judge decided the matter with the flip of a coin. Scary? You bet! Thankfully, you don’t have to worry any longer about this particular dispenser of justice. Last week the Virginia Supreme Court unanimously removed him from the bench.
It would have been a fearful thing to fall into the hands of such a capricious fellow –almost as fearful as it would be to fall into the hands of the living, and very angry God.
Not that God is random in His decisions. He isn’t. His rulings on sin are always just and absolutely consistent. The Lord says, “the soul who sins shall die”, (Ezekiel 18:4b) and the “wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23).
There are no exceptions or escaping from the Lord’s righteous verdict; there are no loopholes through which a guilty soul can squirm. The Lord has ruled: The price for our sin must be paid. And it was.
So that transgressions’ debt might be erased, so the price of our freedom might be paid, Jesus was born into this world. Conceived by the Holy Spirit, He was true God, so He did not sin. Born of the Virgin Mary, He was true Man, so He could take our place. His entire life was spent resisting the evil that is part of us, which permeates our thoughts, words, and deeds. So that we might be forgiven of those sins and granted eternal life in heaven, Jesus suffered, died, and, in His glorious resurrection, defeated death itself.
Now, because of what Jesus has done we never have to worry about falling into the hands of an angry God. On the contrary, because of the Savior’s work, all who believe in Jesus as Savior are adopted as sons of God and are able to call Him,“Father.”
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, I give thanks that, because of You, when my life ends, I shall stand before a loving Father and not an angry Judge. In Your Name, and for Your sacrifice, I give thanks. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries