Merciful and Just?

From the Arguing Atheist feedback form:

Can God Be Both Merciful and Just?

Ofcourse yes!!!

He is Just! and every one will paid for his ouwn sin, but at the same time he is Merciful giving you time to repent and belive in him. He is Merciful and loving becouse he him self come to die for you and paid the panishment of your sin. And you only need to chose to belive in him or not, you are free The Judge has paid the bail so that the guilty one remain free

So it is just to allow someone else to suffer for your wrongdoing? That doesn’t sit well with me.

Posted on January 5, 2011 at 7:17 am by ideclare · Permalink
In: Defining god

2 Responses

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  1. Written by Caleb
    on January 6, 2011 at 5:46 pm
    Reply · Permalink

    It is just for God to receive compensation for our sin. It’s no different from paying someone else’s McDonald’s bill. (Bad analogy, but it works)

  2. Written by Kalindra
    on January 10, 2011 at 8:39 am
    Reply · Permalink

    Actual “justice” requires that the person who committed the crime is the one who is punished, not merely that someone is punished. If, for example, a person commits murder, the courts can’t just convict the first person the police pick up, as that would not be just.

    The argument here is “perfect justice” vs. “perfect mercy.” A god who is perfectly just would be required to always carry the sentence out on the person who committed the crime; perfect mercy would require never carrying out the sentence. Imagine someone close to you was assaulted, and the culprit caught and found guilty. If the judge decided to sentence the guilty party to zero years, would you laud him as being merciful, or decry the sentence as a miscarriage of justice?

    To me, the idea of Jesus “paying” for human sin seems to much like the medieval practice of punishing a whipping boy for the infractions of the young prince: the prince is the recipient of the court’s mercy and the whipping boy is the object of injustice.

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