Tag Archives: punishment for sin

(Isaiah 9-12) That’s Fair

God is fair. He is patient and loving. He calls us to Himself and blesses us when we obey.

God is demanding. He will accept nothing short of complete obedience and holiness. And just like He blesses us when we obey, He punishes us when we disobey.

That doesn’t make Him unfair. In fact, the accepted belief today is what is unfair:

“What’s right for me doesn’t have to be right for you.”
“All roads lead to God.”
“I am master of my life and you are the master of yours.”
“I come first, and what I want trumps what you want.”
“Good people should go to heaven and bad people should go to hell. (But my definition of good and bad doesn’t have to be the same as your definition of good and bad).”

God has set the bar pretty hight – holiness. Then He inspired men to define His holiness so there would be no question as to what He demands. He was fair enough to also tell us in no uncertain terms the results of our obedience, and the punishment of our disobedience. We have no excuse. We don’t have to suppose, or learn by trial and error. God put the rules in place before we were born.

I played pickle ball for the first time this week. Even before I hit a ball, my sister went over the rules, pointed out the boundaries, explained the serve, and how to keep score. Even before I hit a ball, I knew what was required to play the game.

Now, had she handed me a paddle and served a ball to me and expected me to figure out the rules on my own while we played and kept score – that wouldn’t have been fair, would it?

Or if she had made up her own rules while we played, changed them with each serve so she’d have an advantage, and expected me to make up my own rules at the same time, would that have been fair?

Believe me, if I could have I would have made the serving area much bigger on her side of the net. But that wouldn’t have been fair.

You might not like God’s rules. Too bad. You aren’t going to change them, making up your own rules won’t work. He is very clear about that.

And that’s fair.

(2 Samuel 12) Who’s Unfair?

Before you tell God how unfair He was to take David’s newborn son, you need to stop. God is very clear to tell us in His Word that there are consequences for sin, and sometimes innocent people suffer.

God doesn’t want that.

How many times must He tell us to obey Him and be blessed, to trust Him and enjoy the good things He offers to His obedient children? And how many times must He tell us how much He hates, and punishes sin? I don’t know how much more clear God can be about that.

Then let me ask you this: are there innocents in your home who are suffering because of sin in your life?

We all know of children who live in poverty because their drunken fathers can’t hold a job. There are bruised and battered children whose mom can’t control her temper. There are children in foster care with parents in jail, on the streets, or dead because of sin. And there are people who suffer their whole lives with learning disabilities, even physical disabilities as a result of a mother who couldn’t stop shooting up, or couldn’t put down the alcohol and cigarettes while she was pregnant.

Is that fair? Are you going to blame God for that, too?

It grieves me that there are children growing up without any knowledge of God because parents choose golf over Sunday School, and brunch over going to church. The effect of the sin of rejecting God could reach into eternity for the innocents in those homes.

I know it’s the “woke” thing to do to blame everyone else for our struggles. I’m so over this whole thing. I will tell you, whether you want to hear it or not, that you – YOU – are responsible for your behavior. YOU are responsible for whether you obey God, or choose sin.

And here is the other side of that coin. Your sin can and does effect innocent people. It’s not God who is being unfair.

It’s you.

Obediah; There is Hope

I can’t help but think of the sweet reunion between Esau and Jacob as recorded in Genesis 33. A lot had gone down between the two, but when the brothers met after years of separation, they hugged and kissed each other. It seemed all was forgiven. It seemed they would finally live in peace.

If you know their history, you know peace was short-lived. That makes me sad.

Obadiah tells the descendants of Esau that judgment is coming because of their hatred for and mistreatment of Jacob’s family, the family God chose above all other nations to be His instrument. Edom will be punished for rejecting God.

Once again I am reminded how serious God is about being obeyed, about being honored as the only true God. All other religions are doomed to destruction.

But I love how God, even after rendering a death sentence for sin, points to the Messiah. No one has to die in their sin. There is hope. There is salvation through the blood of Jesus for anyone who believes.

The kingdom is the Lord’s. I pray you are a citizen.

July 13 – Seek God And Live

Amos 1-5

“For three transgressions…and for four  I will not revoke its punishment.” God spoke these words to Amos eight times, referring to eight groups of people who sinned against God. In chapters 3&4 God declares that all the tribes of Israel are guilty, none worship God as He deserves and demands. And because of it, God is going to punish them.

But in chapter 5 another phrase is repeated several times. “Seek me that you may live.” Seek the Lord, seek good and not evil that you may live.

I believe God would have us apply these same principles to our individual lives. God will not revoke punishment for sin. Period. Not ever. Every sin comes with a death sentence that must be paid. That will be paid. There is no getting around it. Not for the murder of five policemen in Dallas, and not for that snide remark made about a coworker. Not for adultery, or for that little white lie. Every sin will be punished. God will not revoke its punishment.

But God tells us to seek Him – and live. Now that doesn’t mean He overlooks sin in those who seek Him. That means when we seek God, ask for His forgiveness, our sin debt is marked, “Paid In Full.” The thing is, your sin debt (death) is already paid. Jesus died once and for all.

So it’s sad when people continue to try to pay the debt of their sin on their own, refusing what is already theirs. It’s like thinking you can take care of the national debt by giving them the change in your pocket. Are you kidding me?

Someone is going to die for your sins. You can accept the fact that Jesus has been there, done that on your behalf. Or you can face God without His Son and offer Him the change in your pocket. Dear one, your payment won’t come close to covering your debt. You will be handed the death sentence. And God will not revoke that punishment just because you were a nice person.

God is inviting you to get to know Him. Read His Word. Pray. Accept Jesus as your Savior, your only hope of life. Recognize the many ways in which God is trying to get your attention. Consider His creation and bow before a Holy God who loves you, who gave Himself for you, who died so you wouldn’t have to.

I mean, He’s already paid the bill. Just accept it.