What the Bible says about justice
Lots of people talk about social justice and what’s wrong in the world. Our desire to see wrongs righted is what keeps us glued to podcasts like "Serial" and miniseries like “Making a Murderer.”
Justice is important to God. It’s so important that what’s right, what’s wrong, and how to live justly are consistent themes throughout the Bible.
What does that mean for you and me? Following Jesus means we have to know Him, and part of knowing Him is knowing what’s important to Him. So if it’s important to God, it should be important to us.
What the Bible Says About Justice
1. Justice deals appropriately with those who do right and wrong.
“When justice is done, it brings joy to the righteous but terror to evildoers" (Proverbs 21:15).
2. God loves justice and hates injustice.
“For I, the Lord, love justice; I hate robbery and wrongdoing. In my faithfulness I will reward my people and make an everlasting covenant with them” (Isaiah 61:8).
3. Justice comes with God’s blessing.
“Blessed are those who act justly, who always do what is right.” – Psalm 106:3
4. Justice is part of who God is.
“The Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore he will rise up to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!” (Isaiah 30:18)
5. God wants more justice in the world.
“Let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream!” (Amos 5:24)
6. God wants us to practice justice.
“He has shown you, O mortal, 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” (Micah 6:8).
7. God wants our just actions more than our sacrifices to Him.
“To do what is right and just is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice” (Proverbs 21:3).
8. Justice is demonstrated through mercy and compassion.
“This is what the Lord Almighty said: ‘Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another’” (Zechariah 7:9).
9. God wants us to work for justice—especially for the vulnerable.
“Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow” (Isaiah 1:17).
10. Stand up for what’s right, even when others don’t.
“Do not follow the crowd in doing wrong. When you give testimony in a lawsuit, do not pervert justice by siding with the crowd” (Exodus 23:2).
11. Upholding justice is an essential part of being a good steward of what God has given us.
“Follow justice and justice alone, so that you may live and possess the land the Lord your God is giving you” (Deuteronomy 16:20).
12. God commands His people to uphold justice.
“Thus says the Lord: ‘Keep justice, and do righteousness, for soon my salvation will come, and my righteousness be revealed’” (Isaiah 56:1).
13. Jesus hears our cries for justice and promises to bring it.
“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? 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?” (Luke 18:7-8)
14. Jesus will establish justice for everyone on earth.
“Here is my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen one in whom I delight; I will put my Spirit on him, and he will bring justice to the nations...In faithfulness he will bring forth justice; he will not falter or be discouraged till he establishes justice on earth. In his teaching the islands will put their hope” (Isaiah 42:1-4).
To act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with God is no easy task, but it’s a worthy calling. As we apply God’s heart of justice, we’ll see ourselves and others changed as the kingdom of heaven comes to earth.
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