I heard the following illustration on the radio some time ago. I thought it was a great picture of God’s grace and wanted to share it with you. I hope it helps you understand the way God had two laws to meet: the law of love and the law of justice.
*“They tell the story about a great Russian tribal leader in the early days who had two laws. The first was that all the tribe were to love their parents and the second was they were not to steal. This man's leadership and these laws made his tribe the greatest in all of Russia.
Now one day they discovered that someone was stealing. This angered the leader greatly and he brought all the people together. He said, "Let the thief come forward and receive 10 lashes for his crime." No one came and he upped the ante to 20 lashes. Then 30, then 40 lashes. He stopped there for he knew that the only one strong enough to survive such a lashing was himself for he was a very strong man.
Within a week they brought the thief to him and to his amazement and grief, the thief was his own mother. The people and the guards were wagering among themselves as to what this great and wise leader would do. How would he keep his word: obey his second law and whip his mother, or obey the first law, love his mother and let her go free, thus disgracing himself and the laws he sought to enforce?
The leader gathered the tribe together. They brought his mother forward and the people wondered what the leader would do. Just then the whip master came out with his whip in hand and ripped the shirt from her frail back. "Ah, ha," thought the people, "he's going to whip her." Their eyes darted from the leader to the whip master waiting to see how the leader responded. Would he follow his law of love or his law of justice, he HAD to decide and the fate of his tribe and even more the fate of his mother, hung in the balance.
Then, as the whip master bore the whip for the first lash, the leader held up his hand to stop the whip master and the people thought “Ah, ha, now he is going to overlook his own law to free his own mother”. Just then the leader strode over to his mother, tearing his shirt off as he went and wrapped his arms around her frail body, and took the 40 lashes himself.
That's exactly what Jesus did for us. Jesus took our punishment on the cross. We should have rightly died for our sins, but Jesus took our place. ‘But God shows his love for us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.’” (Romans 5:8)
I hope this encourages you and I pray that if you have not accepted His love gift, please don't delay.
For God's Glory,
Chris S. Sweet