Judgement and Forgiveness

January 13, 2016

Scripture Reading: Psalm 36:5-10

Your steadfast love, O Lord, extends to the heavens,
   your faithfulness to the clouds.
Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains,
   your judgements are like the great deep;
   you save humans and animals alike, O Lord. –Psalm 36:5-6

Isn’t it interesting that the phrase from the scripture above: your judgements are like the great deep; is followed immediately by you save humans and animals alike, O Lord. This implies that the purpose of judgement is the opportunity to save. It seems to me we humans are more apt to apply judgement to condemn.

Many countries around the world work really hard at turning around those who have been convicted of crimes, reclaiming their worth for society at large. There goal is much more than the restorative justice for which many of us long in the USA.

I recently watched the news report of a man released from prison, who had been exonerated after serving 30 years on death row for a crime he did not comment. Middle-aged now, he learned about GPS devices in cars as he rode away from the prison when a woman’s voice came from the dashboard giving directions. I couldn’t help wondering why we would hold people in prison with no concept of what was going on about them in the world to which many of them should return someday.

In Matthew 25 Jesus is pretty clear that he will judge us by the good we do. He forgives us when we stray from our relationship with God and reclaims us for our worth to his Kingdom. He sets an example we all need to follow.

Prayer: God of Grace we thank you for your forgiveness and your guidance. Give us the courage to follow your example in our attempt to restore those who have committed crimes. Amen.

All scriptures are quoted from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized 
Edition, copyright 1989, 1995, Division of Christian Education of the National Council 
of Churches of Christ in the United States of American. Used by permission. All rights