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September 07, 2004

Beautiful Judgment

Kandersteg, Switzerland

This weekend I was hiking on the slopes above Kandersteg, Switzerland in the heart of the Berner Oberland region of the Alps. I am always awestruck by the magnificence of the mountains – the colors, shapes, variations, size and power. They are both beautiful and foreboding. They are a reminder to me of God’s power and majesty, and my fragile smallness.

As I walked beneath a granite wall, I marveled at its lines of twisted rock, folded and stretched – traces of a day of shifting, plunging, rumbling and quaking – a day of destruction and upheaval – a day that would have crushed me, swallowed me, and thrown me down into utter ruin. It was a terrible force that formed these mountains. A force not of fire and heat, but a force from the waters of God’s judgement upon the earth in the days of Noah. I began to see the power, the might, the justice, anger, and wrath of God displayed upon these mountains now leaving behind a portrait of His perfect glory and enduring holiness and righteousness. But now, I lie and rest in soft fields in the shadow of these mighty mountains forced to their altitudes with deep groans from within the earth. And upon these paths that trace God’s judgment I walk in sweet exhilaration and awe, marveling at this terrible beauty.

We worship God as a result of His beauty in every aspect of His character and attributes including His wrath and justice. God’s glory moved upon the earth on that day when Christ our Lord was struck and hung upon the tree beneath a darkened sky, and the obscene work was done upon the hill of Calvary. An angry blow caused blood to flow a mighty river to reach my heart. Wrath and judgement fell upon the cry of the Son, and one life was rendered up for the punishment of my sin. Jesus was broken for me! He bore the full wrath of God – the same weight of wrath that formed the mountains formed my righteousness, and the obscene became beautiful.

Is God’s judgement a fearful and beautiful song to your heart knowing that you have been bought with the blood of Jesus on Calvary and have escaped the wrath our sin rightly deserved? Or does God’s justice leave you trembling in your ruin because you know you stand guilty and unrepentant? The call is to repentance and abandonment to the Mercy and Grace found only at the cross. Oh the Beautiful Judgment of God poured out for my salvation. My heart cannot help but be elevated and raised to new heights and sing in worship and cry out "Holy, Holy, Holy – Worthy is the Lamb that was slain. The whole earth is full of the Glory of God!"

"Great and marvelous are Your works, Lord God almighty! Just and True are Your ways, O King of the saints! Who shall not fear You, O Lord, and glorify Your name? For You alone are Holy. For all nations shall come and worship You, for Your judgments have been manifested."

~ Revelation 15:3,4


Blogger Tom said...

The words you spoke were true. The beauty of the Lord is amazing. Thank you for your songs of worship during that weekend and also coming up to the Coffee Mill and singing.

2:30 AM  
Blogger Robed in Righteousness said...

Dan, I really liked that. All parts of God's character are beautiful. Sometimes I get frustrated that all we hear about is God's love and grace. It is love that he should show justice. It is grace that he should show his wrath. Heaven would be a worse hell for those who do not desire to worship God. I have more to say on judgement and was sparked by your blog, but I will write about some time late next week on my own blog. Robed in Righteousness.
Well, keep exhorting, brother :)

2:19 PM  
Blogger strange-theology said...

He bore the full wrath of God – the same weight of wrath that formed the mountains formed my righteousness, and the obscene became beautiful

Dan, you paint a great imagery in the mind of your reader. As I was reading, I could picture the same spot that we saw the twisted rock. Christ is our rock and likewise, He had to be beatened and contorted to bear upon His shoulders, our burden. And you tied it so well together by seeing Christ. I saw judgment in the rock and you saw THE ROCK in the rock. This blog rocked.
I liked the above quote very much. It makes me think of the wrath of God and the might He used to judge the world and sculpt in righteous fury and that what we see now is a glimpse of God's judgment upon His Son. Do you think it please Him to bruise the earth as well as His Son?
max strange

Strange-theology has a new short blog. Not as elequent or even well thought as yours. I bet you could take my new blog and make it great. Take a peek.

4:51 PM  

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