Tuesday, April 18, 2017

God's Joyful Judgment - Early-Morning Thoughts

From Psalm 98 ...

Let the floods clap their hands;
     let the hills sing together for joy
      at the presence of the LORDfor he is coming
      to judge the earth.
      He will judge the world with righteousness,
      and the peoples with equity.

For some, the judgment of God has been used as a tool to inspire fear, because fear is a handy tool to corral the folks, get 'em in line, fleece 'em and fool 'em.

How many children over the millennia have gone to bed terrified of god, dreaming of a lurid end, with the sounds of some screaming preacher or priest echoing in their little minds.

And how many adults have emotionally crashed and burned in the fear of committing the "unforgivable" sin ... crossing some invisible line, and not ever knowing it until the Last Judgment, when its too late to do anything about it.

But here in the Psalm, and plenty of other places, we have a joyful anticipation of God's Last Judgment ... and a good one it is ... because God is utterly and completely righteous, i.e. faithful to God's creation, to all of its creatures, rocks and stones, and to you and me, brother and to you and me, sister.

Faithful to save.
To love.
Forgive and make new.

To welcome and receive
To bind up and heal.
To restore the lost.
Give sight to the blind.

Release to the prisoner.
Food to the hungry.
Rest to the weary.

Utterly fair, utterly kind, comprehensive and inclusive, God's judgment sets things right, recalibrates the mechanisms of life, fine tunes the whole thing, to be sure that it's working just right, as God intended.

No fear here.
No nail-biting and angst.
No threats, no hellfire and damnation.

Only joy.
Clapping and singing.
Because the LORD is coming.
To judge the earth.

Hallelujah and Amen!

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