The World May Be Perfectly Just After All. Could that really be true?????”
Everybody knows man is made in the image and likeness of a perfectly just God (Gen.1:27; Dt.32:4,NIV). What isn’t so obvious is that we have been created perfectly just also.
Each of us needs the world to be fair! At least, our hearts cry out for justice when someone is unfair to us. When we are the one who is unfair, then, not so much! In a world that is fair, justice demands we should be just as aware of our own injustice as we are of a neighbor’s unfairness. If we want to live in a just world, how can we ignore our own injustice?
Actually, we may think we escape punishment for injustice but it may not be true. We may be able to keep our own unfairness out of our conscious mind but our created sense of justice may cause us to unconsciously punish ourselves.
What are some possible ways man might punish himself? Guilt certainly is self-punishment and it certainly creates lack of ease or dis-ease. Chronic dis-ease is stressful and constant stress on one particular organ can eventually produce organic disease. Profound and continued stress can lead to death.
Fear of punishment is another stressor. Job 3:25, (NIV) says, “What I feared has come upon me; what I dreaded has happened to me.” Job is saying fear and dread bring misfortune. Continual fear of accidents, sickness, death or financial reversal are ways we bring punishment on ourselves.
Psychology says we do not like ourselves any better than we like our neighbor or conversely we don’t like our neighbor any better than we like ourselves. When the Bible instructs us to love our neighbor as ourselves; that is precisely what we all need to do to like ourselves. If we don’t like ourselves, it’s because we don’t like our neighbor! We need to do whatever it takes to like ourselves so we don’t have to live with self-loathing.
With a world full of sin, sickness and disease, it may be all of us are busy punishing ourselves because we have judged our neighbor as unworthy of God’s forgiveness. If we would deny God’s forgiveness to our neighbor, who deserves to be unforgiven?
Christ says, in Lu 6:37-39, NIV, “Do not judge and you will not be judged. Do not condemn and you will not be condemned. Forgive and you will be forgiven.” Unconsciously, we all know we do not deserve Christ’s forgiveness any more than the most unjust criminal.