3.3 God is Judge
Read Psalm 75. Why is the boasting of the wicked in vain?
Psalm 75 reveals God’s sovereign rule as the Lawgiver and Judge. The boasting of the wicked is portrayed as futile, leading to an inevitable judgment executed by God Himself.
God’s role as Judge and Lawgiver signifies that the wicked constantly threaten the just order established by God in the world. However, Psalm 75 declares the certainty that the Lord will judge the world and bring an end to the rule of the wicked. The imagery of a cup filled with foaming wine and the cutting off of the horns of the wicked illustrate the intensity of God’s wrath and the definitive termination of the power of the wicked.
The psalm emphasizes the timely precision of God’s judgment. God selects the right time for His judgment, and this will occur at the end of time in a final judgment. In this process, the Lord explores the hearts of people as part of His judgment, as depicted in Psalm 14:2 and Genesis 6:5,8. God’s judgment on the world is accompanied by an investigation in which He seeks those whom He can save.
The sequence of judgment portrayed in the Psalms first includes the liberation of God’s people from the wicked and the adorning of the humble with salvation. This is followed by the ultimate destruction of the unrepentant wicked. The Psalms emphasize the futility of human weapons against the divine Judge and reveal that God, despite His punishment, is also a forgiving God.
Lastly, the Psalms make clear that God’s judgment begins with His people and extends to the entire earth. The psalmist calls upon God, seeking His judgment, but trusts that God’s justice will defend him. In this way, the Psalms remind us that God’s judgment is characterized by His love and righteousness, serving as a source of comfort and hope for those who trust in His reign.
The Psalms encourage us to rejoice in anticipation of God’s judgment (Psalm 67:5; 96:10–13; 98:4–9). In what ways is God’s judgment good news for those covered by the blood of Christ?
The concept of God’s judgment is often associated with joy and praise in the Psalms. For those covered by the blood of Christ, God’s judgment is good news for several reasons:
Justice and Redemption: God’s judgment brings justice and righteousness to the world. For believers justified by the blood of Christ, judgment confirms their redemption definitively. It ends injustice and positions the righteous before God in their justified state.
Final Liberation from Injustice: God’s judgment also means the ultimate liberation from everything that is unjust and evil. The Psalms emphasize that God will rebuke the wicked and protect the righteous. For those living in faith in Christ, judgment brings the final liberation from everything contrary to God’s kingdom and principles.
Triumph over Evil: God’s judgment in the Psalms is often depicted as the triumph of good over evil. For believers reconciled by the blood of Christ, God’s judgment signifies the ultimate victory over the powers of darkness. It fulfills the promise that evil will not reign forever.
Establishment of God’s Eternal Kingdom: God’s judgment leads to the establishment of God’s eternal kingdom. For those saved by faith in Jesus Christ, judgment introduces the reign of God in its full glory. It fulfills the Christian hope for a new creation where God’s justice and love govern.
Completion and Glorification: God’s judgment brings the completion and glorification of believers. Justified by the blood of Christ, they will stand before God’s judgment seat and enter into His glory. Judgment is the moment of final glorification for those living in Christ.
Overall, the Psalms portray God’s judgment as good news for those covered by the blood of Christ. It fulfills promises of redemption, justice, and the establishment of God’s eternal kingdom for all who believe in Christ.
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