Sunday, August 12, 2012

Divine Justice Is Divine Mercy

                 It Suddenly Clicks How God’s Justice Is His Mercy and Vice Versa: If the Divine Justice were not total, then the Incarnation of God Himself would not have been total.

                Since we are made in the image of God and have sinned, God must repair the ontological damage the image has done to itself. This is justice to Himself because it is an image of Himself. But how does he bring about His justice in  the image? He himself becomes the image for Love and restores the image Himself. It is not that the Father is the ruthless Extractor of justice and punishes the Son [unjustly] for us. Rather the One God restores our side of the Covenant [and therefore justice] that He had made with Abraham.
This suddenly struck me in preaching the text of Exodus 33 where Moses asks the Lord whom He is going to send along with him on the road into the Promised Land. The answer was:  Himself!

“Moses said to the Lord, ‘You, indeed, are telling me to lead this people on: but you have not let me know whom you will send with me. Yet you have said, ‘You are my intimate friend,’ and also, ‘You have found favor with me.’ Now, if I have found favor with you, do let me know your ways so that, in knowing you, I may continue to find favor with you. Then, too, this nation is, after all, your own people. ‘I myself,’ the Lord answered, ‘will go along, to give you rest.’ Moses replied, ‘If you are not going yourself, do not make us go up from here. For how can it be known that we, your people and I, have found favor with you, except by your going with us?”[1]

Here we have the prophesy concerning Jesus Christ, the new Moses: “A prophet like me will the Lord, your God, raise up for you from among your own kinsmen; to him you shall listen. This is exactly what you requested of the Lord, your God, at Horeb on the day of the assembly, when you said, ‘Let us not again hear the voice of the Lord, our God, nor see this great fire any more, lest we die.’ And the Lord said to me. ‘This was well said. I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their kinsmen and will put my words into his mouth; he shall tell them all that I command him. If any man will not listen to my words which he speaks in my name, I myself will make him answer for it.”[2]

Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh, the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, takes a complete human nature with a human will which is loaded with all the sin of all time (2Cor. 5, 21), and wills (humanly) with the fullness of His divine Person – actiones sunt suppositorum [ in this case  divine]. The necessity of divine justice is identical with the totality of divine Love: “‘I myself,’ the Lord answered, ‘will go along, to give you rest.’ “I

[1] Numbers 33, 12-16.
[2] Deuteronomy 18, 15-19.

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