“Oh, the unspeakable greatness of that exchange,—the Sinless One is condemned, and he who is guilty goes free; the Blessing bears the curse, and the cursed is brought into blessing; the Life dies, and the dead live; the Glory is whelmed in darkness, and he who knew nothing but confusion of face is clothed with glory.” Trailady

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A person God turned around many times.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

The two pillars of divine love

God’s love has been expressed in His justice no less than in His mercy. Justice is the foundation of His throne, and the fruit of His love. It had been Satan’s purpose to divorce mercy from truth and justice. He sought to prove that the righteousness of God’s law is an enemy to peace. But Christ shows that in God’s plan they are indissolubly joined together; the one cannot exist without the other. “Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.” Psalm 85:10.

By His life and His death, Christ proved that God’s justice did not destroy His mercy, but that sin could be forgiven, and that the law is righteous, and can be perfectly obeyed. Satan’s charges were refuted. God had given man unmistakable evidence of His love.

Another deception was now to be brought forward. Satan declared that mercy destroyed justice, that the death of Christ abrogated the Father’s law. Had it been possible for the law to be changed or abrogated, then Christ need not have died. But to abrogate the law would be to immortalize transgression, and place the world under Satan’s control. It was because the law was changeless, because man could be saved only through obedience to its precepts, that Jesus was lifted up on the cross. Yet the very means by which Christ established the law Satan represented as destroying it. Here will come the last conflict of the great controversy between Christ and Satan.
Desire of Ages, p. 762.

The two pillars of love are the same but different. They appear opposites, yet are compliments. Justice and mercy appear again and again throughout God’s word because the two make up the essential constitution of His government in His throne and throughout His creation.

Though it is far from comprehensive, the following is a list of the two pillars:

Christ’s mercy and truth Ps. 85:10;100:5;115:1; Mic. 7:20
His righteousness and peace Ps. 85:10
His protection and truth Ps. 91:4,5
His Judgment and redemption Ps. 111:7,9
His servanthood and loosing us from bondage Ps. 116:16
His merciful kindness and truth Ps. 114:2; 138:2
His gracious granting of the Law Ps. 119:29
His liberty and the precepts Ps. 119:45
Weeping during the night and joy in the morning Ps. 30:5
Wrestling with the Savior all night and assurance of salvation at daybreak Gen. 32:24,26
Beauty for ashes Is. 61:3
Garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness Is. 61:3
Oil of joy for mourning Is. 61:3
Jesus calling sinners to repentance Matt. 9:13

The two juxtaposed and counterbalancing aspects of love are blended so indivisibly as to appear as one homogenous whole, and so tightly intertwined that when we taste of His hatefulness of sin that we sense His gracious protection for us; and when we taste of His goodness we immediately sense His reproof. And round and round it goes. Is this confusion? Does this make for bipolar fanatical psychotics?

No, not at all. It provides the psychological environment for balance and peace. There is no confusion in God’s architecture; any confusion must be the product of our inborn rebellion toward His faithful reproofs.

The ever presence of justice and mercy both have one purpose, source, and end—love—an infinitely deep love, a healing, purifying love, which Satan detests. He can’t live with love for a moment. In it’s presence he must flee to one or the other extreme—drunken self-indulgent presumption on God’s grace, or ascetic, self-pitiful, morose wailing toward His condemnation.

The Son of God loves His Father’s stern rebuke and painful sorrow for all things less impeccably perfect than He is. I wonder if the bleached pure God of all creation even has wrath toward His Son. But the Son bears up under the inferno of infinite condemnation because He discerns the unspeakable grief in His Father, the supra-epitome “MAN OF SORROWS.” And this satisfies the Almighty, the “One” who “sat on the throne” “in heaven.” (Rev. 4:2).

The Son’s condemnation comes from His mediation for all His creation, which, apart from Him, would be imperfect to the Father. “Behold, He putteth no trust in His saints; yea, the heavens are not clean in His sight.” (Job 15:15). By His Father’s standard, His Son’s divine perfection appears to be tarnished by His association with His beloved created works. But the Most High God looks beyond the apparent dishonor on His holy Son to His Son’s infinite love and labor pains for His creation. The Ancient of Days sees that His Son retains His own inherent lightning-clean impeccability, and He justifies His Son because of His Son’s divine infinite faith and love.

None but the Prince receives the King’s admiration and blessing, “In Him I am well pleased. Let all the angels worship Him.” But all creation receives divine approval through the Son’s approbation before God. In the Prince they are accepted by the great King of heaven. The Son basks in His Father’s zero tolerance for sin, and shines forth His own acceptance and fear of God to all creation in a continuous flow of atonement, as all creation disseminates, from the higher order of beings to the lower, the Son’s grace and His suffering for their imperfection in the King’s judgment.

There’s a wideness in God’s mercy,
Like the wideness of the sea;
There’s a kindness in His justice,
Which is more than liberty.

The two pillars manifest themselves in different forms. But in looking at their varying manifestations we get a fullness of the breadth and length and depth of the love of God.

God’s commandments and delight Ps. 119:143
His close friendship and truth Ps. 119:151
His precepts and loving-kindness Ps. 119:159
His righteousness and joy Ps. 132:9
His terrible acts and goodness Ps. 145:6,7
His faithfulness and truth Is. 25:1
His peace and truth Is. 39:8; Jer. 33:6; Zech 8:16,19; Eph 6:14,15
His gentleness and judgment Is. 42:3
His righteousness and blessing Jer. 4:2
His truth and intimacy Jer. 9:3
His truth and rest Jer. 9:5
His truth and life Jer. 10:10
His truth, judgment and mercy, compassion Zech. 7:9
His peace and equity Mal. 2:6
His wrath and mercy Hab. 3:2; Rom. 9:22,23
His grace and truth Jn. 1:14,17; Co. 1:6
His spirit and truth Jn. 4:24; 2Thess. 2:13; 1Pet. 1:22
His Spirit of comfort and truth Jn. 14:16,17
His offer to abide with Him and His purging Jn. 15:2,4
His goodness and severity Rom. 11:22
Sincerity and truth 1Cor. 5:8
Kindness and rejoicing not in iniquity 1Cor. 13:4,6
Truth and His boasting of us 2Cor. 7:14
His truth and forbearance 2Cor. 12:6
His convicting signs and enduring patience 2Cor. 12:12
Truth and surrender Gal. 2:5
Requirements of His Law and the word of faith Gal. 3:1
Blessedness and truth. Gal. 4:15,16
His truth and accepting mistreatment Gal. 4:16
The Spirit and righteousness Gal. 5:5
Truth and admonition Gal. 5:8
Truth and loving-kindness Eph. 4:15
Truth as it is in Jesus Eph. 4:21
The Spirit’s goodness and righteousness Eph. 5:9
Truth and entreaty Phil. 4:3
Justice and loveliness Phil. 4:8
Life and truth 1Thess. 1:9
Truth and desire to save. 1Tim. 2:4
Wisdom and peace, gentleness Jas. 3:17
Truth through the Spirit unto pure, fervent love 1Pet. 1:22
Truth and fruitful knowledge of Jesus 2Pet. 1:8
Truth and affection 2Jn. 1; 3Jn. 1
Rejoicing and truth 3Jn. 4
Faithful and true witness Rev. 3:14;19:11;21:5;22:6
Judgment and blessing Is. 30:18
The Lord waiting to be gracious Is. 30:18
Provoking unto love Heb. 10:24; Lk. 10:39,40
The rebuke that is love Acts of the Apostles p. 516
The blow that wounds to heal Acts of the Apostles p. 516
The warning that speaks hope Acts of the Apostles p. 516
Provoking to jealousy Rom. 10:19
Provoking to emulation Rom. 11:14
Provoking to zeal 2Cor. 9:12
Nurture and admonition Gal. 6:4
Condemnation and promise Gal. 3:23
Faithful wounds of a friend Prov. 27:6


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