Saturday, July 20, 2013

GOD WILL PUNISH THE GUILTY - GOOD NEWS

"And the LORD will by no means leave the guilty unpunished." - Nahum 1:3.
The Scriptures tell us we are all guilty of sin. Romans says "all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God", and Isaiah the prophet said, "2 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", Isaiah 59:2. If God's word to Nahum is true that He will not let the guilty go unpunished, how then is it that not all are destroyed by the LORD?

Though we all sin, we are not all sinners. There are the few people in the world, a remnant of people if you will, who have faith in God and God rewards faith with righteousness. John wrote, "1 My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; 2 and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world", 1 John 2:1,2. God is always just and will not let the guilt go unpunished, but with Jesus Christ as our advocate, we may find pardon. And when we follow Jesus Christ, walking with Him by definition means walking according to His will. The sinful life we have put behind us. It is through Jesus Christ, the advocate or High Priest, that we find the forgiveness and pardon of God's grace, Heb. 4:16.

To the lost and dying world that has stored up wrath, God sends out a message not only of judgment, but also of peace. Nahum said, "Behold, on the mountains the feet of him who brings good news, Who announces peace!", Nahum 1:15. What a great message of comfort do we find in Nahum to learn that God is righteous and just, He also "is slow to anger and great in power", Nah. 1:3. So when the judgment of God comes upon the unrighteous world, He does not lose sight of a single faithful child. Nahum says, "The LORD is good, A stronghold in the day of trouble, And He knows those who take refuge in Him", Nah. 1:7.

The message by the prophet told that God's judgment would come undiluted and full strength against the rebellious and ungodly world. But Nahum is also a message of salvation to the remnant of people in the world who put their faith in Him. Today this means we believe in Jesus Christ and confess Him to be the Son of God in Baptism. Acts 2:38 tells us what the guilty people did to gain God's forgiveness. They were told to repent of their sins and to be baptized in the name of Christ and their sins would be forgiven. Have you done this today? Have you changed your ungodly values for Christian ones? Have you put away the deeds of darkness to walk in the light of God's grace? If not, it's imperative to respond now while you still have the opportunity. Said in love. Dan Mayfield

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