A Sense of Justice
You know that feeling you get when you are treated unfairly? I know you do because everybody feels it. That sense of righteous indignation when we encounter injustice is common among all humans for a reason. We were hardwired that way by our Creator. If you don’t believe me, just watch four-year-olds playing with toys. The first time one child tries to take a toy away from another, the natural response in “mine!!!” We don’t have to teach children the concept of fairness, but we do have to train them to respect the rights of others and to be generous and sharing.
I have heard some ridicule the idea of God sending His Son to die for the sins of the world. But if they understood the nature of God, they would realize why such a sacrifice was necessary. God’s great love for mankind and His sense of justice are fundamental components of His character. The creatures that He loved so much committed crimes worthy of death, thus creating a dilemma that only the wisdom of God could solve.
The Sin Problem. Every accountable person (except Christ) has sinned against God (Romans 3:23) and the wages of sin is death, eternal separation from their Creator (Romans 6:23), Men and women are incapable of offering anything of sufficient value to redeem themselves from the guilt of sin (Matthew 18:24). God cannot ignore the price of sin without violating His own character. Without some kind of intervention, mankind would be left mired in guilt and eternally separated from God.
The Divine Solution. How could God make it possible for us to stand justified before Him again while still remaining just Himself? The apostle Paul expressed the solution more beautifully than I ever could. “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; for the demonstration, I say of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus” (Romans 3:23-26).
The sacrifice of the sinless Son of God paid the price for sin, allowing the Father to forgive us without being unjust in the process. The public nature of Christ’s execution demonstrated to the world the righteousness of the Father by providing His own sacrificial lamb, the only Son that He loved so much. Jesus’ death on the cross to redeem us from sin was the ultimate expression of divine love. It has allowed the Father to remain just while offering justification to any who come to Him on His terms. What a gift!