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Justice Requires Mercy

This sermon was preached on December 30, 2012, at Christ the King
Orthodox Church, in Omaha, Illinois, by Dn. Joseph Gleason.

Notes from the sermon:

Gods justice is not our enemy- Dr. Joseph Gleason

Western Christianity for many years has taught us that Gods justice is
ultimately what we need to be saved from.

There is this medieval notion that God has a sense of honor/justice that
when offended has to be punished. There needs to be retribution, otherwise
Gods honor would be degraded and God would be unjust. Therefore every
and any sin must be punished either directly by God torturing you forever
and ever in hell or God taking your sins from you and putting it on his
innocent son and then torturing his innocent son on the cross. Either way
your sins must be punished.

It is no wonder that we have so many atheists.

If there was a conflict between mercy and justice then we should see that
conflict in scripture. When mercy is given then justice should be questioned.
When justice is given then mercy should not be found. If mercy and justice
should ever happen simultaneously then scripture should take notice to
discuss the apparent contradiction and the ultimate solution.

In scripture there is no opposition between justice and mercy. Over and
over again justice and mercy are presented side-by-side as if they naturally
belong together.
Psalm 37:21 The just show mercy
The wicked borrows and does not repay,
But the righteous shows mercy and gives. (Ps 37:21 NKJV)
Ps 112:4 God is gracious, and full of compassion, and righteous.
God is just, compassionate, and merciful.
Psalm 116:5 God is just and merciful
Psalom 145:17 The Lord is righteous/just in all His ways,
Gracious in all His works.
Proverbs 12:10, A righteous/just man regards the life of his
animal, But the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.
Psalm 85:10 justice, peace, mercy are all together
Psalm 89:14 Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your
throne; Mercy and truth go before Your face. Justice and mercy
are twin concepts. Justice and Mercy live in the presence of God.
Isaiah 16:5, God quickly renders justice. Gods throne is prepared
in mercy.

Biblical example of justice.
Joseph being a just man was not willing to make her a public
example. (Matt 1:19)
A fornicator/adulteress deserves death. At the very least she would
be ostracized from the community.
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