The words of Charles Spurgeon always seem to digest well into my soul and stir my affections for the gospel early on in the day. Today, that is especially the case.
Basing his devotional off of Romans 3:26, “just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus,” Spurgeon says regarding God’s justice that “judgment now decides for the sinner instead of against him. Memory looks back upon past sins with deep sorrow for the sin, but yet without dreading any penalty to come; for Christ has paid the debt of His people to the last jot and tittle and received the divine receipt.”
Let’s steep that thought a bit more with this:
“Behold, the LORD’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save, or his ear dull, that it cannot hear; but your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you so that he does not hear…no one enters suit justly; no one goes to law honestly…Therefore justice is far from us, and righteousness does not overtake us; we hope for light, and behold, darkness, and for brightness, but we walk in gloom. We grope for the wall like the blind; we grope like those who have no eyes; we stumble at noon as in the twilight, among those in full vigor we are like dead men…we hope for justice, but there is none; for salvation, but it is far from us. For our transgressions are multiplied before you, and our sins testify against us; for our transgressions are with us, and we know our iniquities…The LORD saw it, and it displeased him that there was no justice. He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no one to intercede; then his own arm brought him salvation, and his righteousness upheld him. He put on righteousness as a breastplate, and a helmet of salvation on his head; he put on garments of vengeance for clothing, and wrapped himself in zeal as a cloak. According to their deeds, so will he repay…And a Redeemer will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who turn from transgression,” declares the LORD.” – Isaiah 59:1-2, 4a, 9-10, 11b-12, 15b-18a, 20
Just as God so radically opposes our radical disposition to sin, he radically makes a way for the impenitent to be united with him through the blood of Jesus. Isaiah’s indictment against the Israelites is the indictment against all of mankind. We are dead men groping in the darkness in midday! However, theres this phenomenal redemption. God, in his good providence, sent the second Person of the Trinity, to die for the unjust, and justify through His blood alone.
God justifies the ungodly.
“For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.” -Romans 5:6
So if you happen to be like me on certain mornings, and it feels like you can conquer the world after your first cup of coffee, your to-do list is totally feasible because you are on your A-game or, if you are also like me at other times when you feel so unable to muster up the motivation to press on gladly, let’s take a second and consider this:
“Therefore, Jesus having taken the place of the believer-having rendered a full equivalent to divine wrath for all that His people ought to have suffered as the result of sin-the believer can shout with glorious triumph, “Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect?” Nor God, for He has justified; not Christ, for He has died, yes has risen again. My hope lives not because I am not a sinner; but because I am a sinner for whom Christ died” – Charles Spurgeon, Morning and Evening,
THERE is where I find my soul’s energy. It’s not the cup of coffee or the checking off of one’s daily to-dos. It’s not even the self-motivation we try and feed ourselves.
It’s solely the justification by faith through Christ.
With this reality, my heart wades in joyous waters.
I can look to this truth in the midst of chaos (because we really aren’t promised a relief from the chaos.) And especially with fall cultivating so much worship in my heart these days, I can look at daily graces with my kiddos and be glad in The Lord that has sent himself to provide the needed sacrifice due for my sin.