Its Just Justice…

Supreme Court Justices

Justice is a word I hear a lot, both in and out of the church.  Because yesterday was the first day of the U.S. Supreme Courts new term, and the first term for new Justice Sotomayor, I thought I would look into justice a bit.

dictionary.com helped me out.  There were a ton of definitions for justice, but I found this one most interest:

Justice–The upholding of what is just, especially fair treatment and due reward in accordance with honor, standards, or law

So what is just?  I am glad you asked.  Just also had a ton of definitions, but this is the most interesting:

Just–based on right; rightful; lawful

Now we are getting somewhere.  So that is how dictionary.com defines justice, what does the Bible say.

Blessed are they who observe justice,
who do righteousness at all times.

Psalms 106:3

OK so Bible and the dictionary agree that justice is about doing right.  Now what is right?  I think that is where things get a little grey.

We live in a time of moral relativism.  I that many Christians, seeing this, think that the solution is to seek justice in the law of our nation.  They understand that for most of our country, what is right is what is lawful.  The only problem is, most of the country is OK with the moral relativism.  More than OK, they like the attitude of, “what is right for you is right as long as it doesn’t impact whats right for me.”

This frustrates the Church, and I think the words of Habakkuk and in the old testament can be heard echoing today.

O LORD, how long shall I cry for help,
and you will not hear?
Or cry to you “Violence!”
and you will not save?
Why do you make me see iniquity,
and why do you idly look at wrong?
Destruction and violence are before me;
strife and contention arise.
So the law is paralyzed,
and justice never goes forth.
For the wicked surround the righteous;
so justice goes forth perverted.

Habakkuk 1:2-4

But God promised in the old testament:

“Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land.  In his days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell securely. And this is the name by which he will be called: The LORD is our righteousness.’

Jeremiah 23:5-6

And Jesus was the fulfillment of this.

What does this mean for the church and the court.  I think it means, that while we should be seeking justice in the laws of our land, we should also understand that ultimately justice is the Lords, and the best way we can seek justice is to live rightly.

Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe High School Bible Verse SignExample:  There is high school in Georgia where the football team has been running through banners displaying Bible verses for years.  This last week, the principal received a complaint and ordered that the banners not be used.

Now I understand how disappointing this can be to these high school students.  They feel like the display of the verses was helping them display their beliefs.  They want justice, and believe that true justice would be the ability to display their signs again.  But I disagree.

The court has to recognize that Christianity isn’t the only religion in our nation.  It has to take into account that we have a public school system that has students of variety of different backgrounds and religions.  It has to take into account that they can not appear to favor any of them.  So while a majority of this Georgia community may have like the signs, the fact that there is a complaint means someone did not.  Their tax money goes to support this school, so to be just, the court or authorities have to take action.

If these cheerleaders and members of the community want the ability to express what they believe, no one is stopping them from living out the verses they so fervently want to display.  Which is better, to have a sign with text that states what you believe or to show the world what you believe through your actions?

Blessed are they who observe justice,
who do righteousness at all times.

Psalms 106:3

Justice is the act of doing righteousness at all times.  For the church, the law of our nation does not always give us justice, at least the way we want it.  But as followers of Jesus, we should not be looking for justice to come from the law of man, but from God.

So we should pray that the Supreme Court be wise and make decisions that would agree with righteousness as it is described in scripture, but we have to understand that our nation does not hold to the Bible, it holds to the Constitution.  We as the church need hold to scripture, and live out our passions and convictions instead of being disappointed when the government seems not to share them, and have faith that justice is from God not from our laws and leaders.

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One thought on “Its Just Justice…

  1. Pingback: More Speech « TheoPublic

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