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Waiting for the Final Proof that Righteousness Pays

Author/speaker Christopher Ash asks, “What are we to make of the Bible’s passages that seem to speak quite straightforwardly of blessings following obedience and curses following apostasy?” Ash urges that a distinction be made between the general truth of such sayings and absolute “every case” truth. He offers the following illustration:

Suppose an earthquake struck a well-planned place like Manhattan, with its clear and ordered grid of streets. If I wanted to go from A to B after the earthquake, I would in general still be best advised to go by the main roads. But whereas before the earthquake that would always be the best route, now I might find both that the main road has been blocked and also that some building has collapsed to open up some unplanned route.

It is a little like this with the created order after the disruption of the fall of humankind. In general, keeping God’s commandments and living in line with the created order will bring peace and prosperity. In general, for example, if I am honest and work hard, I will do better. But not always. And the final proof that righteousness pays will not come until the final judgment, when the disruption will be put right and the creation reordered as it ought to be.

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