Isaiah 33:22 (NIV)
22 For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; it is he who will save us.
Many people have a harsh view of God. They hear that he judges, but then they assume a has penalty must come along with that judgment. Yet this verses tell us the same God that judges us will also be the same God to save us from our sins.
It's a given that some judges in the American legal system are more severe than others. But Circuit Judge Daniel Rozak�from Will County, Illinois�may be the only federal judge who has sentenced a man to prison because of a yawn.
That's right. In August of 2009, Clifton Williams was attending the hearing of his cousin in a Joliet courtroom. His cousin pled guilty to a felony drug charge, and when Judge Rozak delivered a sentence of two years probation, Mr. Williams let loose the incriminating yawn.
Judge Rozak noticed, later describing the incident by saying that Williams "raised his hands while at the same time making a loud yawning sound." The judge decided that this was a disrespectful interruption of the court, and sentenced Williams to six months in jail�the maximum penalty for contempt of court without a jury trial.
This isn't the first time that Judge Rozak has flexed his judicial muscles. A Chicago Tribune investigation revealed that Rozak has charged several court spectators with contempt when their cell phones rang in the middle of a session. In fact, with 30 judges operating in his Judicial Circuit, Judge Rozak has brought more than a third of all the contempt charges filed in the past 10 years.
People like Daniel Rozak are the reason why some people cringe when they hear God described as a Judge. They wonder, Will God judge me with fairness?
[Sam O'Neal, Geneva, Illinois; source: Matt Bartosik, "Shut Yer Mouth: Man Gets Six Months for Yawning," nbcnewyork.com (8-11-2009)]
Isn�t it great that we have a God who is loving, merciful, gracious and does not impose a harsh sentence when He has probably had every right to. Instead God loved us enough to provide salvation through his son Jesus Christ.