Over the last five weeks, I have been outlining an approach to righteousness and justice that stands on an exegetical study of Psalms 97–101. In what follows I will summarize those studies and show the way righteous justice is . . .
- found in God’s kingdom,
- communicated by his justification of sinners,
- mediated from heaven to earth through his royal priests,
- triumphant over all sin and unrighteousness, and
- established in his household.
As I have stated many times, the order of God’s righteousness and justice is important. And here is summary of the steps that we find in Psalms 97–101.
From Psalm 97, we find three truths about justice in God’s kingdom. You can see them detailed here.
- Kingdom justice (i.e. justice in God’s kingdom) begins with God and comes to us when God brings his kingdom from heaven to earth.
- Kingdom justice grows among God’s people when we understand the fundamental divide in humanity and stop trying to play God.
- Kingdom justice runs on the joyous love of God.
From Psalm 98, we find five truths about justice and the righteousness God grants to his people. You can see them detailed here.
- Salvation is an act of God’s judgment, which means God’s salvation demands and provides ‘justification.’
- Justification must pass the test of all onlookers.
- Justification fulfills God’s word.
- Justification is not liberation from oppression, but redemption from sin.
- Justification is the source of true justice on the earth.
From Psalm 99, we find three truths about justice that is mediated through his justified saints. You can see them detailed here.
- The justice of God proceeds in a logical order from kingdom, to temple, to priesthood.
- The justice of God is sufficient for God’s people.
- The justice of God is carried out by his royal priests.
From Psalm 100, we find at least three truths about justice in the presence of God. ** I did not preach Psalm 100, so I don’t have notes on that psalm (yet).
- God’s justification of sinners leads to worship in his temple.
- God’s justification unifies sinners in thanksgiving before God.
- God’s justice is best seen in the people he has justified.
- God’s work of justification comes before God’s commands to do justice.
From Psalm 101, we find ten truths about personal righteousness. You can see them detailed here and here.
- Personal righteousness is fueled by passionate worship.
- Personal righteousness grows as we delight in what is truly right.
- Personal righteousness is personal, not just principial.
- Personal righteousness begins with doing right, not just undoing wrong.
- Personal righteousness precedes public justice.
- Public justice is directed by and delimited to one’s location and vocation.
- Public justice matches the character of God himself.
- Public justice is Godward in orientation.
- Public justice is impartial.
- Public justice is consistent.
These truths do not exhaust the subject of righteousness and justice, but standing on the Word of God they do provide a strong foundation. May the Lord continue to show us his righteousness, that his justice would be reflected in our lives.
Soli Deo Gloria, ds
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