“And I heard the angel of the waters say, Thou art righteous, O Lord, which art, and wast, and shalt be, because thou hast judged thus.”
In John’s vision, he now hears an angel declare the righteousness of the Lord. When we say the Lord is righteous we are saying that He has a right standing with God. He is just, He is innocent, He is holy.
In the context of this vision, the angel is declaring the Lord’s righteousness as He judges lost mankind for their sinful alliances with the kingdoms of Satan. Notice the angel says “Thou art righteous, O Lord… BECAUSE thou hast judged thus.”
If we take a moment to think about the implications of this angel’s statement it teaches us an incredible truth. Not only does the Lord judge in a righteous fashion, meting out punishments that are deserved, fair and without partiality; it also teaches us that He is righteous BECAUSE He judges sin.
In a world who thrills to hear about the love of Christ, His holiness, and His righteousness, many times Biblical accounts of His judgments are explained away or, at best, left unmentioned.
Folks, based upon our text, if our Lord is a righteous Lord, then He must judge sin. If He is holy… sin will not, and cannot, be overlooked …
Job 10:14 KJV – “If I sin, then thou markest me, and THOU WILT NOT ACQUIT ME from mine iniquity.”
Nah 1:3 KJV – “The LORD is slow to anger, and great in power, AND WILL NOT AT ALL ACQUIT THE WICKED: the LORD hath his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet.”
Folks, it is this very principle based upon God’s holiness that Christ was sent to pay the price for the sins committed by His people. It was because, for Him to be holy and righteous, sin MUST BE punished. Either the sinner will be punished, or else Christ had to be punished on the sinners behalf…
2Co 5:21 KJV – “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.”
There is no such thing as a righteous God simply overlooking sin or allow it to go unpunished. It is a necessary result of His holiness and righteousness.
May we all praise the Lord for His holiness and righteousness, including His judgment of sin. May we never cease to tell others of the coming judgment that they face apart from the shed blood of Christ being applied to their account. Although the lost world, obviously, turns away from His wrath against sin, it is the truth, it is a certainty, and they must be warned before it is eternally too late for them.
For an in depth look at these sections of the Revelation: