Today’s reminder is from a recent Theocast episode hosted by Pastor Jon Moffitt and Pastor Justin Perdue.
Jon: Sometimes, I don’t have words for some of the pain you’ve seen and experienced. The one hope I want to give to somebody is if you wake up every day and you begin your day with bitterness, and then you run to the throneroom of grace, and you ask for mercy – you need to do that daily so that you aren’t hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.
Justin: That’s right.
Jon: There’s nothing more that Satan wants to do and sin within your heart than to turn your heart hard to justify yourself in your bitterness. It will destroy not only you but everyone in and around you, and it will not restore what was lost. As we’ve already stated, you think, well, if I’ve lost, someone else is going to lose as well. They’re going to lose as well, and it’s impossible to do that. May I say vengeance is mine says the – Lord, and I will repay. You need to hand that over to God, and God will say, I will dish out what is right and just. You are not the judge. I am.
Justin: Right. You’re not. You are not the judge. And we so often act as though we are. We live in this cycle, this loop of law, transgression, and judgment. Here’s my law. You’ve transgressed; now there’s judgment. And we think it’s up to us to be the judge, to which we know the Lord is the judge of all the universe. He always does right. And as you said, Deuteronomy cited in Romans twelve: Vengeance is mine, declares the Lord. I will repay.
Jon: Yeah, this isn’t judgment. This is us standing outside the dungeon, saying trust me, you don’t want to be in here. It’s going to kill you being in here. You do not want to be in here.
Justin: And if you continue to live from this transactional, quid pro quo perspective – that’s not gospel, that’s not grace. And if we want that kind of transactional quid pro quo life, we need to be careful what we ask for certainly before the Lord, but we can’t relate to each other in these ways, you know? And what we have to trust, Jon, in particular, in the church, when we forgive a brother or a sister in the faith, whether that’s a spouse, a child, or a friend, whatever it may be in the church, it’s like, okay, I’m extending forgiveness because I trust that Christ has already handled and satisfied the justice of God against my brother, against my sister.
And so I’m just pronouncing over them what Christ has already accomplished on their behalf. You know, so that’s important. And then even when it comes to people maybe outside the church, unbelievers in our lives, and we don’t know whether they’re ever going to come to faith, we still can forgive them because the Lord will handle it. Because Christ will either have atoned for this sin, their wrongdoing, in what he accomplished on the cross in his suffering, in his life, and all the rest or they will. And so we can say in as much as it concerns us, we have been forgiven by our king, a debt we could never pay, and we’ve been given a righteousness that we could never earn.
And so we are not going to hold the sins of fellow men and women, image bearers of God. We’re not going to hold their sins over their heads as a record of wrongs because that would be inappropriate.
Everyday Grace 031