Do you suppose, O man–you who judge those who practice such things and yet do them yourself–that you will escape the judgment of God? Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance an patience, not knowing the God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?
Starting from verse 18 of the first chapter of Romans to the end of the chapter Paul describes a bunch of vile and unrighteous type of people and actions. The list is quite expansive and he concludes saying that it’s God’s righteous decree that such people who practice such things deserve to die. Harsh words, and in the past the Church has stopped right there and started declaring judgment on such people. But now there is a mighty rising shift in thinking and observance of the following chapter where Paul says the person(s) who judge(s) such people are just as guilty and worthy of judgment.
Our greatest example of the Kingdom lifestyle is Jesus the God-Man. Nobody before or after Him walked sinless (and thus the only person whom Romans 2:1-4 does not apply) but yet he only showed kindness to those in need of redemption. The woman at the well, the woman caught in adultery, Zaccheus, etc. The only group of people Jesus spoke harshly (only after there many rejections of kindness) were the Pharisees. Ironically, they were seen as the holiest of their culture however being guilty of judging others unjustly because they weren’t perfect themselves.
There are many people in the modern day Church who were apart of the Pharisee mindset but have, thanks to the guiding of Holy Spirit, redirected their focus to Jesus and recognized that kindness still leads to repentance. The Church is meant to be a medic to a sick world. Where we once would press on the wounds of the sick with our judgments and condemnation we are now learning to dress the wounds and bring healing through Jesus. No matter how bad the sin (wound) our judgments won’t help to bring healing, rather love, compassion, and kindness will do it.
God’s judgment and wrath is real. No doubt about that, but God wills that no man perish, but all should reach repentance (2 Peter 3:9).
Declaration: Father, help me show your love, compassion, and kindness for it is your kindness that redeems people and brings them to repentance.