Mercy requires the establishment of the terms of justice – or else it’s not mercy. The person receiving mercy after a judgment would agree that they deserved something else. To call for preemptive mercy instead of justice is not morally commendable but actually a call for injustice because judgment would then become the exception and viewed as unreasonably harsh.
There’s a reason why Jesus died on the cross as a substitutionary atonement and why justice needed to be satisfied in order for redemption to occur. The Father wouldn’t allow the body of His Son to decay in the ground, but resurrected him for our justification. Death before resurrection, always.
Since justice has been satisfied, our confidence in God’s grace is a certain thing. If God merely suspended justice, we would live under the constant fear that God would perhaps at some future time exact justice. He already has, so we can rest in the certainty of His covenant love for us. Our sins were nailed to Jesus, truly, and double jeopardy is out of the question.
© 2013, Rick Hogaboam. All rights reserved.