Year 2 Day 360
Read - 2 Thessalonians 1v5-12
Message - Scott Woodburn
The Lord our God is a righteous judge. He is not swayed by money. He is not deceived by false testimony. He never judges falsely and imposes an unfitting punishment. He is good and just and righteous in all His ways. How can we be sure? The Bible tells us that the evidence for God's righteous judgement can be seen in two ways.
Firstly, God is a righteous judge because He will certainly punish evil. When Christ returns, those who have sought to harm His church (v6), those who do not know God and those who do not believe the Gospel will surely face the wrath of God. The sight of this will be beyond our comprehension. Christ will come with His angels in flaming fire (v7-8) with the purpose of pouring out vengeance on all workers of evil (v8).
What will this vengeance look like? Any enemy of God will know eternal punishment in the fire of hell. They will be away from God's presence and from His glory (v9). My friends I trust that you tremble at these words. The judgement of God is right. No mistakes will be made. If you reject Christ then you will not stand in the judgement and your destiny will be the place called hell prepared for the devil and his angels.
This will all take place when Christ returns. On that day His saints will bring Him glory as they marvel at Him in His resplendent majesty (v10). When this day comes it will be too late for the unbeliever. If you are reading this without faith in Christ it is essential that you repent and believe the Gospel. Do it now, without delay for God the righteous judge will not leave your sins unpunished.
So God shows Himself as righteous by punishing evil but what about Christians in the judgement? Paul saw the steadfastness of the Thessalonians under trial as sure evidence of the righteous judgement of God. How can this be so? As the Thessalonians endured various kinds of trials they were being sanctified by the hand of Almighty God.
Paul would explain this very point in Romans "More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us." (Romans 5v3-5)
Suffering for the sake of the Gospel plays a wonderful sanctifying role in the Christian's life. As we suffer the Lord is at work. He is shaping us and changing us and producing good fruit in us. He is fitting us for heaven so that when Christ comes the Christian can stand before Him without shame. Our sins are paid for by Jesus and each day we are being transformed to His image.
It will be impossible on the last day to accuse God of injustice. The unrepentant will see with their own eyes the tragedy of their unbelief. They will have no ground to stand on and no words to say. On the other hand Christians will be openly acquitted of their sin by their righteous judge Jesus. They will stand on the firm ground of the Gospel and their words will be filled with praise for their Redeemer King.
And so brothers and sisters, while we wait for that great and terrible day may God make us worthy of the calling He has placed upon our lives. May He fulfil our every desire for good and our every work of faith (v11). May the name of Christ be glorified in our lives and actions (v12) for God is both "just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus." (Romans 3v26)
Q4 What is God? God is a Spirit, infinite, eternal, and unchangeable, in his being, wisdom, power, holiness, justice, goodness, and truth.