God “will give to each person according to what he has done.” To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger. There will be trouble and distress for every human being who does evil: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile; but glory, honor and peace for everyone who does good: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. For God does not show favoritism.
Romans 2:6-11, NIV
Choose Your Eternal Destiny: Eternal Life or Wrath and Fury?
Two things about the human justice system come to mind. First, it is fallible. Appointed judges, despite all the education they’ve got, could commit mistakes. Corrupt ones could be bribed to favor a party. Cases could get stuck in the bureaucracy and take ages to be resolved—victims continue to suffer and culprits remain unpunished. Second, it is limited. Convicts could get sent to the most secure of maximum security prisons, but death ultimately allows them escape. Judges could give convicts life sentences, but these sentences end when death comes.
Fallible and limited can never be used to describe God’s judgment. God is perfect in all his attributes. He never commits mistakes. He will never be corrupt. Because God is perfect, his judgment is perfect as well. God is eternal—he has no beginning and end. There’s no escaping his judgment. There’s no expiry to his judgment. Because God is eternal, he could also give eternal judgment.
Here’s the thing: God has set a time of judgment for all. It doesn’t matter whether you’re an Israelite (a Jew) or a Gentile (Filipino like me, American, British, et cetera). If you live your life in persistent pursuit of righteousness, you’ll be given eternal life. But if you live your life as a stubborn quest for unrighteousness, it’d be wrath and fury you’ll get from God.
Here’s the greatest news ever: eternal life is a free gift from God!
It’s our sin that keeps us from receiving this gift, but even that problem has been taken care of by God who is not only holy and just, but gracious and merciful as well. Because of the sacrifice of the blameless (sinless) Jesus Christ on the cross, there is now forgiveness of sin. This gift of eternal life will be yours when you put your faith in Jesus (knowing and believing what the Bible says about him, not doubting that what he offers could be yours, and trusting him as your only hope for salvation) and when you repent of your sins (acknowledging that you are a sinner that cannot save himself, having disdain for the sins you’ve committed, asking for forgiveness from God, and turning your back on sin and pursuing righteousness instead). When you receive God’s free gift, you become a child of God, and that’s when the otherwise inescapable quest for unrighteousness gets changed into the pursuit of righteousness.
Again, two things to keep in mind: First, God’s judgment could never be wrong. Second, God’s judgment is eternal.
So, for your eternal destiny, what’s it gonna be: eternal life, or eternal wrath and fury?
Meditations // Romans 2:6-11