In the criminal justice system judges play many roles. They interpret the law, assess the evidence presented, and control how hearings and trials unfold in their courtrooms. Most important of all, judges are impartial decision-makers in the pursuit of justice. So when we refer to God as our judge then most likely the courtroom scenario comes to mind. However, there is a big difference between people’s judgment and God’s judgment, and here is why:
In God we find a judge who is not judgmental.
God, our righteous judge, can discern the truth of a situation like no other; unlike a judge in the criminal justice system, God sees the whole picture. He profoundly understands where we are coming from and what led to the case presented to Him. In one of his letters John wrote (1 John 3:20):
“Even if we feel guilty, God is greater than our feelings, and he knows everything.”
We are our own worst enemy when it comes to judging ourselves or others. When our emotions run wild we tend to blow everything out of proportion. And who is completely insulated from other people’s opinions? Whether it’s popularity or a bad reputation, it all affects our judgment. We have a hard time being impartial. God on the other hand is unaffected by all these things. King David knew that and relied on it. After his controversial nationwide census, God sent Prophet Gad to challenge King David with three choices. David’s choice revealed that he trusted God’s better judgment (2 Samuel 24:13-14):
“So Gad came to David and asked him, ‘Will you choose seven years of famine across the land, or to flee for three months before your enemies, or to submit to three days of plague? Think this over and let me know what answer to give to God.’ ‘This is a hard decision,’ David replied, ‘but it is better to fall into the hand of the Lord (for his mercy is great) than into the hands of men.’”
If God is the perfect judge, then Jesus is the perfect attorney. In Jesus we have an advocate in heaven fighting for us. We have someone in heaven who acts as our attorney, who understands us like no other and pleads our case. Jesus has our back. He is for us. If we feel stuck in our limitations, Jesus has a way of setting us free by lifting our self-inflicted burdens off our shoulders. All our shame, the things we hide, actions we’re not proud of, can become a thing of the past.
By the way, renewing people is Jesus’ specialty. In the last book of the Bible He encourages us with these words (Revelation 21:5):
“And the one sitting on the throne said, ‘See, I am making all things new!’”
Using progressive tense, our renewal through Jesus appears to be an ongoing process. In other words: Jesus is making all things new 24/7. Doing something all the time, that person probably knows what he or she is doing. In the same vein we could say that Jesus is very experienced in saving and renewing people. If you haven’t looked into His track record yet, you are encouraged to do so. You’re up for an amazing discovery!
1 John 3:19-20: “And by this we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before Him. For if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things.”