What Is Justice?
Dr. Tony Evans
DescriptionBiblical justice seeks to protect individual liberty while promoting personal responsibility.
Life is all about relationships. Most of the time, friction arises in relationships because of misunderstandings. One person sees a situation one way, but the other person sees it another way. Each person can’t figure out why the other person can’t see the situation like they see it, and sometimes these situations become huge arguments. The problem lies in the fact that sometimes we look at situations in different ways because we think differently than other people.
Justice is one of these misunderstood situations. Specifically, social justice has become a convoluted term meaning different things to different people. It is often used as a catchphrase for illegitimate forms of government promoting the redistribution of wealth and expansion of civil government. This view of social justice is a denial of authentic justice. For example, the biblical command of “Thou shalt not steal” includes government-sanctioned theft through state-enforced redistribution of wealth and illegitimate taxation.
This is why I use the term “biblical justice.” Biblical justice seeks to protect individual liberty while promoting personal responsibility. It is the equitable and impartial application of the rule of God’s moral law in society. There is no clear and right definition of justice that excludes God. So to grasp justice, we must go to God’s Word. The Bible condemns injustice because God is just. As the ultimate lawgiver, He strongly opposes injustice. His laws are righteous and must be applied without partiality because justice identifies the moral standard by which God measures human conduct.
So at the heart of biblical justice is the impartial application of God’s moral law within all realms of society including economic, political, social or criminal justice. Any other definition of justice won’t suffice.
What enters your mind when you hear the phrase “social justice”?
— Deuteronomy 32:4
— James 4:12
— Psalm 19:7-9
— Deuteronomy 1:17