Public Justice satisfied
Isaiah 53:11: “He shall see the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.”
The first Adam acquired experiential knowledge of evil as a result of eating the forbidden fruit. Adam failed to trust in and keep the word of his Heavenly Father who had taught him right from wrong.
Regrettably, all men followed Adam’s bad example of eating the forbidden fruit by determining for themselves right and wrong instead of accepting the Natural and Moral Law of God. Thus death reigned over the human race until Christ came. Whereas, the first Adam failed; the second Adam, Christ, by his knowledge overcame all of the temptations from the Evil One. Thus he became an acceptable sacrifice as a Lamb without blemish for all that believe.
Public justice is satisfied in the Atonement of Christ. Public justice is the Father’s sense of justice that is satisfied by the sacrifice of Christ, who shows his bountiful concern for the ends of justice by bearing the terrible consequences of sin. The goals of justice are to promote the highest good of all and prevent the highest misery of all.
By Jesus’ obedience he has honored unto death the law which all men have broken. And he has fully respected and represented the authority of his Father. He has impressed upon men and angels the evil of sin; he has provided a perfect role model, which should procure the future good conduct for those who have been forgiven by his gracious sacrifice.
A.M. Hills wrote, “Punitive justice must punish all sin according to its desert. Public justice is that principle in God that prompts him to deal with sin in such a way as will bring about the most good to the moral universe–to punish when he must, and forgive when he can. Public justice is divine justice in moral administration securing the highest good of all moral beings, or the moral universe.
“There is retribution in public justice. This retributive element is never wanting in it. God’s public justice manages the universe, doing the best it can with all moral beings. It saves sinners by way of Atonement when it can, i.e., when they will let him. It punishes those who reject the Atonement and all overtures of mercy and grace, because it must do it, for the good of others. There is nothing else to be done with such sinners. When they will not glorify God’s justice by accepting salvation through an Atoning Savior, they must glorify it by receiving damnation.”
Finally, the atonement of Christ gave God the opportunity of reveal his boundless love in a manner in which it had never been revealed. “God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us Romans 5:8).” Mercy provided the Atonement; Justice required it
CHRIST REIGNETH FOREVER, ALLELUIA
Isaiah 53:12: Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he has poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
Love’s redeeming work is done, Alleluia!
Fought the fight, the battle won, Alleluia!
Death in vain forbids him rise, Alleluia!
Christ has opened paradise, Alleluia.
The last verse of chapter 53 as do the final verses of chapter 52 of Isaiah speak of the Messiah’s resurrection and his exaltation: “Behold, my servant shall deal prudently, he shall be exalted and extolled, and be very high. So shall he sprinkle many nations; the kings shall shut their mouths at him: for that which had not been told them shall they see; and that which they had not heard shall they consider (Isaiah 53:13 & 15).”
The Son of God, as King of Kings and Lord of Lords, far surpasses in power and glory all the kings and princes who have ever reigned on the earth. He even outshines the greatness of Moses and Elijah, who typify the law and prophets, with whom he was seen on the Mount of Transfiguration.
What are his spoils? All power has been given unto him in Heaven and Earth. “The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever (Rev. 11:15).”
The second person of the Trinity, “being found in fashion as a man, humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Phil 2:8-11).”
Triumphant warriors of old, Alexander, Caesar, Mohammad and Napoleon, seized the spoils of kingdoms. Their names were renowned. But they will bow to our conquering Messiah, who “having spoiled principalities and powers (Satan’s kingdom), made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it (Col 1:15).”
Jesus divides his plunders with his church. He gives us his inheritance. “He arose a victor from the dark domain, and he lives forever, with his saints to reign.”
“But unto his people is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth [where he bruised Satan’s head]? He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.) And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ (Eph 4:7-12).”
He has made us his ambassadors, his ministers, to reconcile the world unto himself (2 Cor 5:20).