“The righteous perishes, and no one takes it to heart” (Isaiah 57:1 NKJV).
It was just another story in the local newspaper. A schoolgirl accused her principal of sexual abuse. Shortly afterward she was set on fire and after struggling for life for a few days lost that battle too. There was a brief outrage in the community which soon settled down so that the incident became just one more of many. The principal of course denied any involvement with the girl or her death. Continue reading “Who cares?”
“Then the Lord spoke to Moses: ‘Speak to the Israelites and tell them, “When you cross over the Jordan River into the land of Canaan, you must then designate some towns as towns of refuge for you, to which a person who has killed someone unintentionally may flee. And they must stand as your towns of refuge from the avenger in order that the killer may not die until he has stood trial before the community. These towns that you must give shall be your six towns for refuge.”’” (Numbers 35:9-13 NET).
God is a God of mercy. We can see this in his providing towns of refuge for the Israelites. These towns were so designated to allow someone who had accidentally killed another person to be safe from any ‘avenger’ who might come after them to take their life. If they were within these towns they were safe. In more recent years church buildings have often served this same purpose as a place of sanctuary. Continue reading “A God of mercy and justice”
Pain, suffering and injustice are sad facts in this sinful world. Sometimes, it may be so profound that we don’t think we’ll ever overcome it. Yet, the Lord has a way.
According to the Free Dictionary, vigilante justice is when “a person who is not a member of law enforcement pursues and punishes persons suspected of lawbreaking.” Continue reading “Christians and vigilante justice”
Matt, a fine young man I watched grow up, made a comment that got me to thinking. Matt’s heart aches over the current situation in Ferguson; it is broken at the comments expressed by some who cheer the grand jury’s decision not to indict. Matt sees clearly what so many are forgetting, that a young man was killed. There is nothing to cheer in this, one way or the other.
What jumped out at me in Matt’s comments was: “…read the comments of way too many white people desperately holding on to the lie that the system is fair.”
“The system”… how it developed is a discussion for another time. What touched me is Matt’s underlying heartfelt plea that the system might be “fair.” Continue reading “The System”
“He is the Rock, his work is perfect; for all his ways are justice, a God of truth and without injustice; righteous and upright is he” (Deuteronomy 32:4 NKJV).
“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you pay tithe of mint and anise and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. These you ought to have done, without leaving the others undone” (Matthew 23:23).
All over the world people are crying out for justice to be done. In Ferguson, Missouri friends, family, and supporters of Michael Brown demand justice for his death. In South Africa the world watched the trial of Oscar Pistorius for the death of his girlfriend. Americans still remember the trials of O.J. Simpson and the policemen accused of brutality in Los Angeles, and question whether justice has ever really been served. Continue reading “Crying out for justice”
Good manners or etiquette is concerned with doing the proper thing in the proper place at the proper time. More important than good manners is right conduct before God. Doing the right thing. This is a part of what the Bible calls justice or righteousness.
The word “just” translates the Greek word dikaios, meaning “upright, just, righteous” (BAGD). It also includes what is right or correct, applied especially to one’s conduct. Continue reading “Whatever Is Just”