With God, there is only justice and mercy. With Christ's death, I no longer live under condemnation, by the grace and love of God! Over the years, I have found great solace in the the late twenties and early thirties of the Psalms. When I have been mired in sin, the enemy of our souls has been quick to point the finger of condemnation and accusation against me. I find this to be best described in Psalm 35. Verses 11-21 are below.
they question me on things I know nothing about.
They repay me evil for good
and leave my soul forlorn.
Yet when they were ill, I put on sackcloth
and humbled myself with fasting.
When my prayers returned to me unanswered,
I went about mourning
as though for my friend or brother.
I bowed my head in grief
as though weeping for my mother.
But when I stumbled, they gathered in glee;
attackers gathered against me when I was unaware.
They slandered me without ceasing.
Like the ungodly they maliciously mockedb;
they gnashed their teeth at me.
O Lord, how long will you look on?
Rescue my life from their ravages,
my precious life from these lions.
I will give you thanks in the great assembly;
among throngs of people I will praise you.
Let not those gloat over me
who are my enemies without cause;
let not those who hate me without reason
maliciously wink the eye.
They do not speak peaceably,
but devise false accusations
against those who live quietly in the land.
They gape at me and say, “Aha! Aha!
With our own eyes we have seen it.”This is the way of life of those whose judge is not God. This the way of life of those who live under the condemnation of the Prince of this world instead of under the benevolent grace of our Creator. Today I saw the comfort we can take in having God as our judge, and the freedom from condemnation that comes from grace and Christ's death on the Cross. How often we allow ourselves to listen to those voices that say, "Aha! Aha! With our own eyes we have seen it."
As I think of my first name now, having God as my judge is a message of freedom and grace. With my middle name, meaning "Christ bearer," it suggests to me that bearing the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, that frees us from condemnation and to do the will of our Heavenly Father is my calling. Which means that I must begin work again on this book, in great earnest!