“But the LORD sits enthroned forever; he has established his throne for justice.” Psalm 9:7
In our love of grace, we sometimes make the mistake of seeing justice as the enemy that grace vanquishes. While it is true that the Law rouses the terrible justice of God against sin, it is not justice that is our enemy. It was sin, rebellion, and lawlessness that brought sickness, death, and destruction to his creation. Everything that is good, lovely, and perfect proceeds from the holiness of God, and God’s throne of justice is the champion of his holiness.
Justice brings down the gavel of God’s final judgment on sin’s reign. Here God confirms his commitment to the rule of holiness and the protection of his new creation from sin’s corruption. God’s justice serves as an impassable boundary that never yields to sinful man and refuses sin any quarter. There are no exceptions.
God’s justice wounds even his own Son who bore our sin in our place before God’s throne. In the death of Jesus, we see both God’s unwavering commitment to justice and his merciful provision of life forever with him. As we walk beneath the cross, covered by the blood of Jesus, the execution of his justice for sin passes over us.
Now, cleansed of sin and restored to holiness, God welcomes us to the other side of his throne. This is the place of green pastures and still waters where the holiness of God cradles and nourishes his redeemed creation. Here, in the shadow of his wings, we stand saved from God’s judgment, protected from sin’s presence, and established forever in the holiness of God.
Justice is one of the great gifts of our God and King for which we owe him thanks.
Alex Ghioni is the lead pastor of Mars Hill Sammamish.