Nobody wants to be judged. In fact, most of us are terrified at being judged. And for the most part most of us are reluctant at judging other people. We want to be known for showing compassion and understanding. We want to show nothing but grace and love to everyone.
How do we understand the line in the Apostles Creed, “Christ will come to judge the living and the dead.” He will separate the sheep from the goats, the wheat from the weeds. That there is an everlasting torment. A place with weeping and gnashing of teeth. The lover in us asks why can’t everyone escape this horror?
The idea of heaven is easy to embrace. Even at non-religious funerals mourners have been known to say, “She’s in a much better place now.”
Darwin once put to words what many of us naturally feel.
“I can indeed hardly see how anyone ought to wish Christianity to be true; for if so the plain language of the [biblical] text seems to show that the men who do not believe, and this would include my father, brother, and almost all my best friends, will be everlastingly punished. And this is a damnable doctrine.”
We must come to a place where we realize how necessary and comforting the doctrine of God’s wrath and judgement are.
If there is no ultimate accounting for evil, what do we say to the Jews about Hitler? What do we say to little girls who have been sold into the sex trade by greedy, oppressive scoundrels? It’s too simple to merely say that our God is a God of love and nothing else. If a judging God did not exist, then we would be living in a world of Darwinian chaos in which the strong eat the weak and only the powerful survive.
For love to be truly loving there must be judgement.
2:6 “God is a fair and just judge.