A Double Pain

David Wilkerson (1931-2011)

The first part of God’s “double pain” is when we sin in his presence, against his light and love. The sin itself is not what grieves God, however, but the fact that he knows the consequences of our sin. God knows our sin is going to drive us to misery.

The second part of God’s “double pain” is that our sin compels him to keep his Word in judging us. He has to stand by like a loving father and listen to our cries of anguish as he chastens us, all for the purpose of producing godly character in us.

At one time I came to a crisis, to the end of my rope. Slanderous things were being said about me; and after this had gone on for some time, I began to remind God of his Word: “A false witness will not go unpunished, and he who speaks lies shall perish” (Proverbs 19:9, NKJV), and “A liar listens eagerly to a spiteful (destructive) tongue” (Proverbs 17:4).

After some time, I cried out in despair, “Oh, God, how long will you let this go on? The lies keep changing so much, I don’t even know what they are from day to day. You are my defender, Lord, and you say you will avenge your people. But I don’t see you working any justice.”

As I thought of all the slander coming against me, I began to think of other beleaguered pastors and servants. There are many righteous people today who are enduring awful trials because evil words are being spoken against them. “Why, Lord?” I prayed. “Why do you continue allowing your people to be hurt?”

The Lord answered, “David, I am merciful, longsuffering and slow to anger because it pains me to mete out my justice. If you could feel my pain, you would never, ever desire to see my judgment fall. You would understand why I wait so long to bring it down. You know how painful it is to discipline your children. It is the same for me. It pains me to chasten those I love!”