“Let the rivers clap their hands, let the mountains shout together for joy before the LORD, for He is coming to judge the earth. He will judge the world righteously and the peoples fairly.” Psalm 98:8-9
What strikes me about this passage is this: God’s coming judgment, which often times causes us to fear and recoil, should actually bring joy and hope. Here, nature is personified. It claps and shouts! Like Jesus, Who said that the rocks and trees would cry out if we failed to worship, the trees and mountains (creation) erupt in worship at the very THOUGHT that God is coming…to make all things right and good and restored….and if nature yearns for Him, how much more should WE, His blood-bought children, yearn for Him?
If the thought of God’s judgment brings great fear to your heart, perhaps it’s because of one of the following reasons:
1. You have never repented of your sin and the sin within you must either be pardoned or punished. So you fear God’s judgment upon you and your sin, and rightly so. The answer is to repent and believe in Christ for the pardon of your sin.
2. You have not yet understood the mercy of God fully, realizing that if you are His child, Jesus took your punishment on the cross.
3. Your image of God is one of anger, rage, and evil instead of love, grace, and justice.
4. You are secretly afraid that in His judgment of all things, Christ may somehow get it wrong, make a mistake, or miss something, and you may end up being punished when you didn’t deserve it.
Yet God’s judgments are perfect because He is altogether perfect. He will not mess it up. He will get it right on that final day and we can trust him, as the verses say, to judge righteouslyand fairly. Do you really think God has missed something along the way?
Today, let’s be ready to erupt in worship…quietly, internally, loudly, publicly, in our car, at our desk, at the supper table…at the very thought of Christ returning to set everything straight and redeem us…how could we hold in our praise at such a glorious thought?
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