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Posts Tagged ‘Justice’

Many, many people have walked away from God, believing that ‘God isn’t Good’ because of some misplaced ‘Justice’ issues.

You know what I mean; the thoughts that we can have like, “Why is this happening to me?”, “I don’t deserve this!”,  “This is not fair!”, “Where is God in all of this?, “Where is the justice?” and so on and so forth.  And from there we talk ourselves into believing something terrible about God, that perhaps He is not Just, and therefore perhaps He is also not Good. I have said this in a previous post and I need to say it again, whatever happens in our lives we must always remember that ‘God is Good’.  We must always have this as a pillar of truth in our hearts. 

WE MUST BE UNSHAKEABLY CONVINCED ABOUT THIS!

Even when we don’t understand what is happening, when God appears silent, when we can’t see God anywhere, we need to make sure that the enemy can NEVER snatch away from our hearts, that pillar of truth that ‘God is Good’.

Did you hear that?  Did you get that into your Spirit?

READ IT AGAIN!

Even when we don’t understand what is happening, when God appears silent, when we can’t see God anywhere, we need to make sure that the enemy can NEVER snatch away from our hearts, that pillar of truth that ‘God is Good’.

So, what about justice?

That is, the Justice of God.  Here are some thoughts (they are by no means exhaustive):

Foolish and Selfish Notions about Justice

Firstly, I want to deal with a foolish notion about God’s Justice.  I believe a lot of us have a foolish notion that we deserve life to be trouble free and fair.  Now this isn’t really a ‘Justice of God’ issue, but when we are in those moments of trouble and despair, we think life (or rather God) is unfair.  We ignorantly blame God and label the situation as a ‘Justice of God’ issue.  In reality, in those moments, we have no concept of what the ‘Justice of God’ really is.  You see, the foolish notion that we deserve a trouble free and fair life is a self centred delusion that is birthed out of the depths of our pride and sinful nature.  God and His Justice gets twisted.  You see, we try to twist our selfish notion into a ‘Justice issue’, an accussation against God, and from there, unfortunately, we begin to slander God’s character.  Have you thought about the implications of this thinking?  That by blaming God we are actually slandering His character!

“Would you discredit my justice?  Would you condemn me to justify yourself? – God [Job 40:8]

Some preachers feed into this foolish notion of prosperity and blessings and ‘best life now’.  “YOU DESERVE WEALTH AND PROSPERITY” (NOT!).  And what happens when we don’t get these things?  Our faith takes a nose dive, the wheels fall off and disillusionment sets in, and, in the end, God gets slandered!   We say, “Oh, if God was ‘Just’ I wouldn’t be going through all of this”.  NO, NO, NO!

PRIDE, PRIDE, PRIDE!

This is not a Justice issue.  This comes from the depths of our sinful nature.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  The truth is, since we were born, the only thing we have deserved is death and hell (Rom 6:23) .  The truth is, if God’s Justice was metered out upon us we would have never lived at all!  The truth is, in these present days, we are living in times of God’s Mercy and God’s Grace through His Son Jesus.  In these present days, God’s Justice is held back from those who are evil and those who are ‘good’ (ie: I mean ‘not so evil’)(Matt 5:45).  “All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God”(Rom 3:23), “All are condemned to die for their sins”(Rom 6:23), “But Jesus took our condemnation and gave us His righteousness(Rom 5:9-10, Rom 5:18-19) – as a free gift”.  Stop looking for more than Jesus.  Those who are in Christ have everything.  EVERYTHING we have is Jesus.  Jesus is our Jewel and our Crown but if we are blessed with material wealth this is a bonus.  And when trouble comes, we still have Jesus!  Jesus is enough! (unless we are looking for something more than Jesus).

Life is not Fair

I have always observed that ‘Life is not Fair’ and, since the sin of Adam and Eve, life can never be fair.  So, if you are hoping for Justice and Fainess on this side of Eternity you may be waiting a very long time (However, sometimes Justice does happen and sometimes it is something worth fighting for).  But, on the other side of the coin, we have a sure hope that Justice will prevail (eventually) when God wraps all things up.  ‘Life is not Fair’ is not a moan or a whinge, or some slogan to justify brokenness or mediocrity, it is a fact of life.  ‘Life is not Fair’ is a wake up call to get over things, to move ahead knowing, in the end, there will be Justice.  ‘Life is not Fair’ can be a releasing thing knowing that you are not the only one singled out for injustice.

Consider Cain and Abel.  What did Abel do wrong?  NOTHING! – his gift was acceptable to the Lord.  He had favour in the eyes of the Lord and yet he was murdered by his brother.  Where is the Justice?  Please tell me what did Abel do to deserve to be murdered?  Please tell me the wisdom of this story so that we can understand God Justice(Gen 4:3-16)?  The truth is, Abel did nothing to deserve his murder just as there will be things in our lives that will be unfair and unjust.  The sin of Adam(and Eve) has set off a chain reaction of sin and corruption in the hearts and lives of men and women that even extends to God’s very creation(Rom 8:19-22).  In the world that we live ‘Life is not Fair’ but ‘God is still Good’.

The Lord’s True Justice

The Lord loves justice and His heart is for the poor and the needy.

“The LORD loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of his unfailing love” [Ps 33:5]

“The LORD secures justice for the poor and upholds the cause of the needy” [Ps 140:12]

So, as our hearts come more into line with God’s heart, so our love for righteousness, justice and the needs of the poor and the weak will grow greater.

Bono, in his speech to the NAACP put it this way…

This is true religion, true religion will not let us fall asleep in the comfort of our freedom. “Love thy neighbor” is not a piece of advice, it’s a command…That means that in the global village, we’re going to have to start loving a whole lot more people…where you live should not decide whether you live or whether you die…The poor are where God lives. God is in the slums, in the cardboard boxes where the poor play house. God is where the opportunity is lost and lives are shattered.  God is with the mother who has infected a child with a virus that will take both their lives. God is under the rubble in the cries we hear during wartime. God, my friends, is with the poor, and God is with us if we are with them.

God’s instructions and warnings are clear…

“This is what the LORD Almighty says: ‘Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another. Do not oppress the widow or the fatherless, the alien or the poor. In your hearts do not think evil of each other” [Zech 7:9-10]

“Stop doing wrong, learn to do right!  Seek justice, encourage the oppressed.  Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow” [Isa 1:16-17]

“He has showed you, O man, what is good.  And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God” [Mic 6:8]

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world” [James 1:27]

“Woe to those who make unjust laws, to those who issue oppressive decrees, to deprive the poor of their rights and withhold justice from the oppressed of my people, making widows their prey and robbing the fatherless” [Isa 10:1-2]

“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices — mint, dill and cummin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law — justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former” [Matt 23:23]

In the words of Jesus and His mission we hear the heart of the Father…

Luke 4:16-21
16 He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. And he stood up to read. 17 The scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:

18 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me,

because he has anointed me

to preach good news to the poor.

He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners

and recovery of sight for the blind,

to release the oppressed,

19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”


20 Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him, 21 and he began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

There is so much more to the Justice of God.  It is perhaps sufficient to say that we have discovered that the true Justice of God shows the Father’s heart of compassion for the lost and broken, the poor and in prison, the blind and the opressed, the orphan and the widow but it also shows the Father’s great wrath for all those who oppress and take advantage of the weak and also perhaps to those of us who sit on their hands and do nothing.

And finally,

Luke 18:1-8
18:1 Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. 2 He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared about men. 3 And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’
4 “For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care about men, 5 yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually wear me out with her coming!'”
6 And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. 7 And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? 8 I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?

I find this passage really interesting.  It starts with the persistent prayer of a widow for justice and it ends with Jesus saying “when the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?

So where are His faithful ones, helping the widow get her Justice?

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Shown towards the end of a message given by Mike Pilavachi Tue 8th July 2008 at the Hillsong Conference. The message was about the intimately inter-twined relationship between worship, evangelism and justice.

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