“For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps… who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously, who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness” (1 Pet. 2:23).
The words righteously and righteousness, could just as easily be translated justly and justice. Jesus endured unjust treatment not as a doormat, not in apathy, but because He was appealing to a greater court, a higher court, to a more effective justice. He entrusted Himself to Him who always judges righteously. Jesus did this in order that all of our injustice might be put to death, and we might live for true justice in Him.
But the appeal to the justice of God for sinful people can only be in Christ, otherwise, you are asking to be destroyed. How can sinful people ask for justice? The Bible’s answer is only in Christ. And this means on the one hand, refusing to revile, when we are reviled, refusing to threaten when we are abused, and on the other hand, it means refusing to back down, refusing to surrender, continuing steadfastly in obedience, entrusting ourselves to God, just like Jesus.
So what will it be? The frail and vindictive justice of man that will ultimately be swallowed up in God’s perfect justice? Or will it be the justice of the cross? Remember, with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you. The justice of the cross does not ignore sin and evil, but the justice of the cross is an appeal to the Highest Court, the Highest Judge, the Perfect Judge in the blood of Christ, and will not the Judge of the Whole World do right? Will He not hear the cries of the poor and the oppressed? Will He not have mercy even on high-handed, hard-hearted sinners who turn to Him in humility?
This justice of the cross is being worked out here and now in history, but on the last day, on the Great and Final Triumphal Entry, there will be nothing undone that needed doing, there will be nothing done that needs undoing. Because Jesus appealed to One who judges justly, all of our cases have been perfectly appealed to the Father. And all will be well. All will be right. Praise the Lord.