Jon Taylor – Lead Pastor
What do you think of when you hear the word justice? Does that word stir anything in you to act, or has the word been so misused that it no longer means anything to you? I have good news for you – our God loves justice and works for justice, and He wants us to live justly and to be deeply involved in the work of seeking, advocating for, and bringing justice to this world.
Just look at some of the verses that address how God feels about justice:
– Psalm 11:7 – “The Lord loves righteousness and justice…”
– Psalm 50:6 – “And the heavens proclaim his righteousness, for He is a God of justice.”
– Psalm 99:4 – “The King is mighty, he loves justice…”
– Psalm 103:6 – “The Lord works righteousness and justice for all the oppressed.”
– Psalm 140:12 – “I know that the Lord secures justice for the poor and upholds the cause of the needy.”
From the good people at livejust.ly, we have some good definitions of justice as we’re talking about it in this series. First there is Primary Justice, which refers to the violation of rights due all creation by mere fact of being created by God. Then there is Reactive Justice – giving what is due in response to a violation of primary justice, most often used in reference to the judicial system.
In this message, we looked at the story of Esther and saw what a powerful advocate for justice she was. She went before the king twice, at great risk for herself, to advocate for her people. Her bravery is an example for us all to stand up to injustice when we see it, and to advocate for justice.
Jesus in Luke 4, tells us He is about justice, too. He read from Isaiah and applied this to Himself as He began His ministry. “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight to the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
Our purpose, as a part of the Church’s is to incarnate the values of the Kingdom of God and witness to the love and the justice revealed in Jesus Christ by the power of the Spirit, for the transformation of human life in all its dimensions, both on the individual level and on the community level. The church was designed by God to carry out, throughout history, his purpose of love and justice revealed in Jesus Christ through the Church and in the power of the Spirit.
One of the easiest ways for you to get involved in justice is to partner with International Justice Mission. Read about them here, sign up for their weekly prayer email here, or become a Freedom Partner here. June and I have been Freedom Partners and Prayer Partners for years and I enthusiastically recommend them.
Make justice a lifestyle!