Do You Want Justice or Mercy?

Do You Want Justice or Mercy?

I have a friend who pursues justice; she wants everything to be fair. The bad thing about absolute justice is that it leaves no room for mercy. In many ways, justice and mercy are opposites:

  • Mercy is getting off with a warning, while justice says you deserve a ticket.
  • Mercy is having a test question thrown out, while justice says you got it wrong.
  • Mercy is receiving probation, while justice says you deserve jail.
    Mercy is getting a second chance, while justice says there are no “do-overs.”
  • Mercy is being permitted to retract your chess move, while justice says “sorry, you took your hands off it.”

In a paradox of Godly proportions, God is both fully just yet full of mercy.

Justice says that an imperfect person cannot be in the presence of a perfect God, while mercy through Jesus allows us to do so anyway.

Thank God for his justice and his mercy—and for paradoxes!

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical spirituality, often with a postmodern slant. He seeks a fresh approach to faith and following God through the lens of scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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