Read: Jeremiah 12:1-4, 14-17
You are always righteous, Lord . . . Yet I would speak with you about your justice. (v. 1 NIV)
We live in an age of protest. When society’s mechanisms for protecting fairness and human dignity break down, the cry resounds: Is there no justice? We ask this question rhetorically. But in Jeremiah 12, the prophet demanded a response. After all, Jeremiah knew that nothing in the world happened without God’s permission. How was it that the author of justice permitted the innocent to fall prey and the wicked to prosper? To Jeremiah’s surprise—and ours—God answered.
He replied that justice was a long game. What looked like inaction was the unfolding of a plan that would take the duration of human history. God reassured Jeremiah—and us—that in the end, he would call every evildoer to account.
The problem is that we are all evildoers. Perfect justice cannot discriminate between sins, small or large. Our only hope is that God’s perfect justice might be balanced by his prevailing mercy. God met the demands of his justice at the cross of Jesus Christ. This meant that anyone could ask for his mercy. The apostle John therefore assured us that “if we confess our sins, [God] is faithful and just to forgive us our sins” (1 John 1:9). We can tolerate the world’s injustice because we trust God’s justice. We can face his justice because, through Jesus, we know his mercy. —Ben Van Arragon
As you pray, wait patiently for God’s justice and find peace in his forgiveness.
About the Author
Ben Van Arragon is a pastor, husband, and father of two teenage daughters. He has served the First Christian Reformed Church of Detroit since 2008. He writes and produces video teaching on the Bible and Reformed creeds and confessions. His writing for Words of Hope includes series on Jeremiah, Exodus, and Work and Rest.