The consolations of God - Fourteenth in a series
In the beginning God was the only king, priest and prophet and he was the only judge. He made man to bring him into these roles and ultimately to make men a kingdom of priests (Ex 19:6 , 1 Peter 2:9) and we will judge the angels (1 Cor 6:3). We need to learn God's ideas on justice and for this post we will only look at his righteous acts of compensation.
As Judge over all, God compensates his children and many others under the sun when he sees that they have not been fairly treated. He ensures they are compensated by justice and by gifts that make up for their deprivation. His compensations are wonderful consolations.
When Eve gave birth to Seth, he was named "Substitute" because "God hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel; for Cain slew him." (Gen 4:25) Seth was her recompense because he would have a heart for the Lord just like Abel's, whose sacrifice showed he honored and loved God.
Sarah was so sure that God would compensate her husband for his lack of progeny that she gave him her maidservant, Hagar, to bear in her place (Gen 16:1-3). Her long wait for a child of her own was compensated by a miraculous birth and a lenient ruling that the first son would be sent away. God understands our frame, and he also compensated Hagar and Ishmael by promises and miraculous and great provisions.
Tamar, who was deprived of progeny by her husband's death and then by her father-in-law's empty promises, was not upbraided for her deceitful manipulation of Judah but rather rewarded by the birth of twins, one who became an ancestor of Christ. (Mat 1:3) This story seems to indicate that women have a rightful expectation of children. If this expectation is disappointed, God will compensate in some way; of course, we should not produce or seize upon our own compensation, but wait on the Lord.
Leah was given children since she was unloved by her husband. Esau seems to have been recompensed for the loss of his blessing by wealth (Gen 33:9). Joseph was made vice ruler of Egypt to make up for all his sufferings.
And, to echo the words of the "Faith" chapter, "And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of…" (Heb 11:32) the many examples of God's compensations that prove he is a God of justice and love. His very character is a great consolation.