Exodus 22-24; Matthew 18

Matthew 18:6 “Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.”  “Woa”, as Keanu Reeves would say.  What happened to “Jesus gentle, meek, and mild”?  We fall in love too much with the idea of God’s mercy at the expense of the idea of God’s justice, to the point of denying the reality of Hell, playing the “How could a loving God…” card.  There is this persistent idea that the “angry” God of the Old Testament was replaced by the smiling, pipe-smoking, slipper-wearing God of the New Testament.  The description of God’s justice – from the lips of Jesus Himself – are numerous in the New Testament.  A charming example is Revelation 21:8, which is the roster of those – e.g. the unchaste, the deceivers – whose fate is the burning pool of fire and sulfur.  Not exactly a Sandals vacation.  Lord, grant me the gifts of the Holy Spirit, especially the fear of You, that I may dread sin because it offends You, and I don’t want to offend You because I love you.

GOD’S ANSWER: Mercy is always offered, but if you spurn the mercy and do not repent, you will receive justice.

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