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Do You Live in Fear of Divine Judgment?

Richard Baxter takes up a topic that often plagues the souls of many Christians. Notwithstanding the gloriously reassuring promise that “there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 8:1), many live in fear that they will suffer the condemnation that Christ Jesus has already endured and exhausted in himself on the cross. So, Baxter writes:

“Who will bring any charge against God’s elect (Rom. 8:33)? Will the law condemn us? No! Whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law. But we are not under the law but under grace, for the law of the Spirit of life, which is in Christ Jesus, has made us free from the law of sin and death (Rom. 6:14; 8:2). Will conscience condemn us? No! We were long ago justified by faith and so have peace with God (Rom. 5:1). Our hearts have been sprinkled from an evil conscience (Heb. 10:22). The Spirit bears witness with our spirits that we are the children of God. It is God who justifies; who will condemn (Rom. 8:16, 33-34)? If our Judge does not condemn us, who will?

Oh, what inexpressible joy this brings the believer. Our dear Lord who loves our souls and whom our souls love will be our Judge. Will a man fear to be judged by his dearest friend or his brother or father? Will a wife fear to be judged by her own husband? Christ came down to suffer, weep, bleed, and die for you, and will he now condemn you? He was judged, condemned, and executed in your place, and will he now condemn you himself? It has cost him so dearly to save you, even his own blood, and will he now destroy you? He has done most of the work already, in redeeming, regenerating, sanctifying, justifying, preserving, and perfecting you, and will he undo all that at the end? No!” (49-50).

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