It is a blessing to know two things about the Lord our God. One, He is righteous and two, that we could plead our case with Him. It is because He is righteous that one can securely plead his case with Him. We can plead our case with Him, because we know the outcome of our pleading will always result in perfect justice. It is only those who have sought the Lord’s justice that prospered. The likes of Abraham, Moses, David, Solomon, the prophets, apostles all sought His justice. The notion behind pleading God is that we discuss matters with Him and He responds. We observe how justice is carried on in this world. No man can give perfect justice. It is because of the difference present between the God of righteousness and the man of unrighteousness. Yet, man can be made to understand and perform justice when he pleads the righteous Lord. Each time we plead the Lord and discuss any matter with Him we are asking for His justice on those matters. This is a great blessing in knowing the Lord. Further, there are many things a man does not understand, about life or His word, and for this reason alone he should discuss with God.
The reason the world is in sin is it lacks righteousness and justice. When Adam and Eve were without sin, righteousness and justice were part of them. The question regarding righteousness and justice and how they should be possessed only came into existence when man fell. More than not, man was in great need of justice, because of the sin that became prevalent. It is reasonable to say that the more of sin the less of righteousness and hence, the lesser the justice. Who is responsible for such great calamity? Is it not man, who constantly sins against God? Therefore, God and belief in Him had to become the greatest entity of man to overcome sin and its works. Sin continues to prosper. It prospered in the past and is no different in the present. Even in the churches it is fiercely prospering. As he noticed the effect of sin amid God’s people, a man of belief said, “Righteous are You, O LORD, that I would plead my case with You; Indeed I would discuss matters of justice with You: Why has the way of the wicked prospered? Why are all those who deal in treachery at ease?” (Jer. 12:1).
It is an instinct of man to always seek justice and plead his case at a place where there is no guarantee. In other words, at a place where there is no one righteous as the Lord. It is a weakness he acquired, because of sin. If the blind cannot lead the blind, how can the fallen provide justice to the fallen? The world is already devoid of justice and those who plead their case with it will have no guarantee. For this reason, God has approved His people that justice might prevail to be seen in this unjust world and that His righteousness might be understood. Whether it was the forefathers, the leaders, kings of Israel and the prophets in the past or the church and her intricacies in the present, God has called all to believe in Him that the world might be saved through His righteousness and justice. Men of God like Jeremiah understood this and pleaded God of the things they did not know and of the things they desired to see. In the case of Jeremiah, he was asking the Lord to validate him i.e. validate his thoughts. With the word of God in his hand, he must have found the answer. On the other hand, by faith the word itself provoked him to plead the Lord concerning the things he did not understand. For in doing so his predecessors have found justice. Therefore, he himself became the living proof, by the mercies of God, for righteousness and justice. This is what God desires from the church also, to be a living proof of His attributes. Yet, this does not become possible unless Christians begin to plead their case with God and discuss matters with Him. To write or discuss of such things appears easy to the eye, but the practice of them takes profound belief in God; then, the results too shall be profound.
It is one thing to search the word of God and a totally different aspect to seek the Lord the word testifies. The former is understood only when the latter is practiced. To search the word of God alone is like a glass half full or on a serious note, a glass half empty. This knowledge the churches have failed to grasp. If their preachers, teachers, elders or pastors did not understand the mighty reason for the presence of the word of God, the members too will have no understanding. When the churches are half empty, they are nevertheless, not full. It is imperative that the churches understand this – to survive each day on this earth requires the working of the Lord in them. Because they do not plead, they do not know and since they do not know, they cannot desire to see. If then this is the case, who can become a living proof of His attributes? “And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man and not wanting to disgrace her, planned to send her away secretly” (Matt. 1:19). If one has been found righteous by the word of God, it is not by his might, but by the righteousness of God in him. Hence, to this day Joseph, by faith, has been a living proof for the righteousness of God in man. He did not arrive to it by reciting the Law or by becoming a mighty spokesman of it. He arrived at it, because he knew God like his predecessors of faith. The righteousness and justice of God were working in him when he intended not to disgrace Mary and hence, was led to do the will of God.
Christians need to constantly plead God to validate them, because of the many thoughts that appear in their mind. When the word of God is read or heard, or when certain events appear to the eye, the thoughts that Satan causes in a believer’s mind are severe. At this time, pleading the righteous Lord and then searching His word will give justice. When those who lead the church are of such practice, they will be a living proof for God’s attributes and the church too will follow and be the same. The blessing that follows is that the word of God will be rightly understood. There will no longer be a room for theories or doctrines that appear by mere thoughts of man; and if there are any teachings, they will be of the Lord. “Therefore when he had gone out, Jesus said, “Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in Him” (John 13:31). How substantial it is that when the man of sin had gone out, the Son of Man is glorified! There is a reason why the churches are unable to glorify Jesus in its true form. It is the presence of the man of sin, the devil, in them. He must leave if Christ is to receive their glorification of Him. You as a preacher, elder, or a Christian might be with that man of sin filled with thoughts that do not belong to the Lord. You have searched the word of God meticulously, yet you have not been filled, since you have not yet understood the mighty reason for the presence of the word of God. You have not pleaded the Lord for His understanding.
There are men with great education in the churches; men of age and men of authority. If these have not put into practice the mighty reason for the presence of the word, what do they possess? God’s understanding does not appear by searching the word alone, but by discussing matters with Him. Each one has to spend time with God just as they spend time with the things or people they love. Would a father not love to spend time with his son, or a wife with her husband, a daughter with her mother? Yet, God’s people do not spend time with Him. Is it not by spending time with their loved ones that each comes to understand the other, though the laws of nature, morality and the nation are present in their midst? O, what a pity that the churches are unable to learn even from this! This is the reason the churches are run by the doctrines that do not belong to Christ.
A Jew’s advantage is “great in every respect. First of all, that they were entrusted with the oracles of God” (Rom. 3:2). He is a Jew by circumcision. His circumcision gave the advantage. If this work in the flesh has given him the advantage of being entrusted with the oracles of God, how much more advantage should a Christian possess, having his heart circumcised by the Spirit, to receive Christ’s law? If circumcision in the flesh was enough to receive the weak Law, much more is required to possess the perfect Christ. If Christians keep Christ just as the Jews kept the law, they are weak and without Christ. It is for this reason the Law failed toward a Jew: they kept the Law in the flesh, but failed to keep the belief that was first begotten by God in Abraham their father. They did not have the same understanding of God as Abraham. Therefore, they brought forth traditions according to their thoughts and gave themselves to mingle with the nations. Yet, there were those like Jeremiah that kept the Law while being in faith. Therefore, he was able to discuss matters with the righteous Lord. When Christians also practice the same in Christ with the word, they are saints for they interpreted and practice the word just as the Lord intended. For this reason, Paul called them saints. “Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, To the saints who are at Ephesus and who are faithful in Christ Jesus” (Eph. 1:1).
Are you a saint? He or she is a saint who is filled by being faithful to Jesus. There are no half measures; no emptiness. They are saints, because the word of God has filled them with all the knowledge pertaining to the Lord. They are saints, since they knew the mighty purpose of the word of God. They have cleansed their sinful, tempting and testing thoughts by discussing matters of justice with the Lord. They have been validated by the blood of Jesus as sinless. They have been performing works, as they sought the Lord to validate their hearts. They have understood the consequences of not being saintly before God, who “did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a preacher of righteousness, with seven others, when He brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly” (2 Peter 2:5).
Dear brethren, we all know the literal meaning of ‘saint.’ But, is it what the Lord expects from us? A saint is one who understands the Lord just as the Lord understands of Himself. A saint cannot speak lies, cannot commit adultery with the word of God, is not prejudice and does not speak his own mind. A saint in Christ is a preacher of righteousness. His life for the Son of God itself is a preaching of righteousness. We do not live in the time where we have to look for the Savior that will appear. We live in the time where the Lord returns suddenly with reference to justice. Therefore, plead the Lord and learn to plead Him that you may know the difference between sin and righteousness, the wicked and the righteous, the right and the wrong, the thoughts of man and the thoughts of God, that you may understand the sufferings of this age and the perseverance necessary to attain to His glory. For “In the generations gone by He permitted all the nations to go their own ways” (Acts 14:16). The intrinsic wisdom here is that in this last generation, after having offered His Son, He will not permit us to live if we go by our own ways.