The demand that a penalty be paid for sin made the sacrifice of Christ necessary for God to forgive us and remain a just God. The reason the judgments of God are always true and righteous is that He has all the facts and He possesses unparalleled integrity. "Lady Justice" is depicted, not only with a sword and scales, but she is also wearing a blindfold, the symbol of impartiality.
Righteous judgment requires the careful consideration of relevant evidence and, frankly, there are factors that are totally irrelevant to the determination of truth. A person's guilt or innocence will be revealed by indicators like forensic evidence, surveillance video, eyewitness accounts and alibis, not the defendant's race, nationality, gender or social status. The blindfold symbolizes blindness toward factors that don't matter.
The Scriptures clearly show the perfect impartiality of God. Not only do they indicate the things that are irrelevant to His willingness to fellowship a person, they emphasize the legitimate determining factors. Notice the definition of God's impartiality.
God doesn't care about race or nationality. Explaining why he had gone to the home of a Gentile family to teach them the gospel, Peter said, "I most certainly understand now that God is not one to show partiality" (Acts 10:34). Paul wrote that God promises glory and honor and peace to everyone who does good, "to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For there is no partiality with God" (Romans 2:10).
God doesn't care about social status. Slavery was a conspicuous component of the Roman economy in the first century, but God held both slave and master in equal esteem. After giving instructions to slaves about respecting their masters, Paul told masters, "Do the same things to them, and give up threatening, knowing that both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no partiality with Him" (Ephesians 6:9).
God doesn't care about your bank account. James devoted a considerable amount of time condemning favoritism toward the wealthy in James 2. Verse 5 says, "Did not God choose the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him?"
So what does God care about? Paul defined the God of righteous judgment "who will render to each person according to his deeds: to those who by perseverance in doing good seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life" (Romans 2:6-7).
There are two important lessons here: 1) God focuses on each person's character and we should too, and 2) God rewards those who diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6); if you are not diligently seeking God it is high time you started.
(John McKee is an evangelist West Murray (Ky.) Church of Christ in Murray. Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the opinion of this newspaper or the Murray Ledger & Times, where the comments originated.)