Ask for justice

Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny

Many people seek the face of a ruler, but it is from the Lord that one receives justice. Proverbs 29.26

It is a natural tendency to look to what we see as authority for justice. It is our belief that they should act with integrity.

Jesus told a parable to his disciples in Luke 18.1-8. There was a judge in a certain city that did not fear God nor respect people. There was a widow who lived in that city who continued to approach the judge about her cause. She came before him so many times that he decided to give her justice just so she would leave him alone.

This parable is teaching about the need to always pray and not get discouraged. God loves his people and he will act on their behalf. We need to continue to ask for justice. God will grant it to those who are persistent in asking for it.

#risingjoy #Proverbs #justice #prayer

What is justice?

Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny

How blessed are those who promote justice, and do what is right all the time! Psalm 106.3

The Lord loves justice, Psalm 11.7. Justice is the quality of being impartial or fair. Wisdom walks in the pathway of justice, Proverbs 8.20. God has promised that if we ask for wisdom, he will give it to us generously, James 1.5.

God calls people to stop sinning. Sin separates us from God. In Isaiah 1.17, Isaiah wrote “Learn to do what is right! Promote justice!” How can we learn to do what is right? Where is the source of what is right? 2 Timothy 3.16 answers those questions telling us that the scriptures are where we find the source of what is right and what we need to do.

People who try to do what is right all the time are blessed! They will be happy and at peace.

#risingjoy #Psalms #justice

The Lord promotes justice

Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny

Turn away from evil! Do what is right! Then you will enjoy lasting security. For the Lord promotes justice, and never abandons his faithful followers. They are permanently secure, but the children of evil men are wiped out. Psalm 37.27-28

This psalm was written by David, who became king of Israel after Saul. After he was anointed by Samuel, he entered into the service of the king. Saul persecuted David for some time and even tried to kill him more than once. However, David always respected Saul for being the king.

1 Samuel 24 relates an occasion that Saul was hunting David to kill him, even though he had done nothing to deserve the punishment. Saul had entered a cave to relieve himself. David and his men were hidden at the back of the cave. David crept up and cut off an edge of Saul’s robe. Afterward, with his conscience bothering him, David would not allow his men to hurt Saul. The king left the cave unharmed. After Saul had started down the road, David came out of the cave and called to him reassuring him that he was not planning evil against Saul.

David did turn away from evil, for the most part, and did what was right. He served as king of Israel for forty years and the kingdom did well under his guidance.

#risingjoy #Psalms #justice

He guaranteed justice

Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny

David reigned over all Israel; he guaranteed justice for all his people. 2 Samuel 8.15

David was anointed king of Israel after God rejected Saul from being king due to disobedience. David reigned over the twelve tribes of Israel. He was a famous king who campaigned and conquered many of the nations that were nearby Israel. In 2 Samuel 8, it is mentioned twice that the Lord protected David wherever he campaigned.

David was also a man after God’s own heart, Acts 13.22, of whom God said that David would accomplish what he wanted him to do. This does not mean that David did not do anything wrong, but his attitude was always contrite and repentant when shown his error.

David was a just king and the kingdom flourished as a result. Proverbs 29.4 states, “A king brings stability to a land by justice, …”. May we pray that justice will be present in our government.

#risingjoy #2-Samuel #justice

Pursue justice alone

Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny

You must not pervert justice or show favor. Do not take a bribe, for bribes blind the eyes of the wise and distort the words of the righteous. You must pursue justice alone so that you may live and inherit the land the Lord your God is giving you. Deuteronomy 16.19-20

Moses was nearing the end of his life. He would not enter the promised land. There had been elders from each tribe chosen that had received part of the spirit that God had given to Moses to help him in dealing with the people, Numbers 11.16-17. However, up to this point, Moses had been the final word if a difficult matter had to be judged.

A different system would need to be enacted after the Israelites entered the promised land. Each tribe would be given their own land with different cities. They would no longer be in one place altogether.

Moses left the instructions to appoint judges and civil servants in each tribe in all of their villages, 16.18. These men were to judge the people fairly. They were not to show partiality nor take a bribe, but to pursue justice alone. This was one of the conditions that was given to be able to live and inherit the land that God was giving to them. As we know from reading further, due to the injustice practiced later, Israel was carried away to exile.

What does this mean for us today? God has not changed. He is the same. He still expects us to live justly in the world and to treat all men impartially. James wrote to Christians that we should not show prejudice, 2.1. We are to love our neighbor as ourselves, James 2.8.

The world is a better place when we practice justice.

#risingjoy #Deuteronomy #justice

Justice a rational trait

Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny

Doing justice brings joy to the righteous and terror to those who do evil. Proverbs 21.15

Justice is a trait that is rational. Both sides of a situation have to be weighed to be able to make a fair judgment. Hearing both sides of an argument can, at times, bring confusion. What is one to do? Where do we find the source of justice?

Solomon wrote in Proverbs 1.3 that the proverbs that he had written would give instruction in justice. The beginning of justice is to fear the Lord, 1.7. Being just is the same as being correct and acting accordingly. The Bible is where we turn to find what is correct, 2 Timothy 3.16-17. The instruction given in the Scriptures teaches one how to be a just person.

Left to himself, man does not have this capability. Because when justice wins out, the evildoer is terrorized. If you do evil, it is only a matter of time before you are caught.

Let us be the ones who are just trying to do what is right!

#risingjoy #Proverbs #justice

I need to change

Rising Joy, by Vick Matheny

Justice will settle down in the desert and fairness will live in the orchard. Isaiah 32.16

In the verses prior to this one, the outlook is dim. In verse 13, the prophet calls for mourning over the land and the once-happy houses in the city. In verse 15, there is a time frame given for this desolation. It will continue until new life is poured down from heaven. At that time, everything will change. Justice and fairness will bring about peace and security. God is the one who is just. He is the only one who can give us true peace in adversity. When we put our faith and our trust in him, obeying him, and putting his kingdom first, he has promised that we will have what we need in terms of the basics. He has promised clothes and food will be provided, Matthew 6.25-34. The problem comes when we do not put him first. We try to do it all ourselves. Our strength is small. God is the one that gives us strength. He is the source of all that is good. Do I acknowledge this in my own life? Do others see that I live by faith in God? Or do they even know that I am a follower of Jesus Christ? If not, I need to change. I need to let my life reflect God’s glory. I need to let it reflect the peace and security that only he gives so that others are drawn to his saving grace.

#risingjoy #Isaiah #justice

The ropes of the wicked, Psalm 129.4

“The Lord is just; he cut the ropes of the wicked.”

Psalm 129.4

God’s justice is shown in caring for his people and thereby fulfilling his promise. He is faithful to his covenant. He frees from the oppressor.

God’s people often cry and ask how long they must suffer. They appeal for justice, v. 5. Justice is not blessing those who oppose the Lord, v. 8.

#votd #Psalms #justice

Do what is right: Isaiah 1.17 VOTD

“Learn to do what is right! Promote justice! Give the oppressed reason to celebrate! Take up the cause of the orphan! Defend the rights of the widow!”

Isaiah 1.17

God appealed to Israel for her repentance, which means correcting what is wrong in one’s life and learning to do right. Through the prophet’s warning, he sought opportunity for forgiveness, v. 18.

Is anything lacking in your profession of faith? If so, what? What is there that we need still to learn about doing right?

#repentance #Isaiah #justice #VOTD

Testimony of two or three: Deuteronomy 19.15 VOTD

“A single witness may not testify against another person for any trespass or sin that he commits. A matter may be legally established only on the testimony of two or three witnesses.”

Deuteronomy 19.15

God is just. He organized the people of Israel so that justice would prevail. Attempts to pervert justice were dealt with harshly so that all would fear.

Such principles continue to bring justice in the disciplinary process of the church of God. Why is the testimony of two or three witnesses important in this process?

#justice #discipline #VOTD

‘Abhorrent to the Lord your God’ Deuteronomy 25.16 VOTD

“For anyone who acts dishonestly in these ways is abhorrent to the Lord your God.”

Deuteronomy 25.16

Accurate and correct measures were conditions for Israel’s long life.

Honesty is necessary for the practice of justice.

#honesty #VOTD #justice

Confusing spiritual mercy with a lack of physical justice

It seems as though many people in the religious world do not know the difference between spiritual mercy triumphing over spiritual justice and spiritual mercy that ignores physical justice – even to the extent that child molesters are given a pass from deserved prison time simply because they wear a collar around their neck!

“…Francis overruled the advice of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and reduced a sentence that called for the priest to be defrocked, two canon lawyers and a church official told AP. Instead, the priests were sentenced to penalties including a lifetime of penance and prayer and removal from public ministry.” (Pope quietly trims sanctions for sex abusers seeking mercy)

“Penalties” including a lifetime of penance and prayer and removal from public ministry? The reality of such a “penalty” is nothing but a prime example of what it means to confuse mercy with a lack of physical justice. It would do an injustice to the phrase “slap on the wrist” if someone were to use it in connection to the “penalties” listed above.

Spiritual mercy is God’s business, and such a mercy can be found by meeting his requirements regardless of the sin that has been committed.

Physical justice is the responsibility of those who are in authority upon the Earth. Without physical justice there is no law; only anarchy. And when such justice is blatantly ignored by those in authority, the victim is forced to suffer an injustice twice…once at the hands of the criminal, and again at the hands of the “authority” who perverts the very definition of the word justice with their less than paltry judgment.

The justice being ignored by the Vatican’s pope is not something that has been incurred by a speeder, a jay-walker, someone stealing so they can eat, or even two consenting adulterers. The crime was the institutionalized sexual assault of children! And a lack of cuffs around the wrist due to a collar around the neck perverts the concept of mercy triumphing over judgment by denying physical judgment a chance to even take place.

““Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to sin, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were drowned in the depth of the sea. Woe to the world because of offenses! For offenses must come, but woe to that man by whom the offense comes!” (Matthew 18:6-7)

#authority, #justice, #mercy

The Even-Handed Justice of Man (A Word to the Wise)

“A just weight and balance are the LORD’S: all the weights of the bag are his work (Proverbs 16:11, NKJV). In this exhortation of the Holy Spirit, the king over his people is not one who is to sustain his own pleasures with corrupting influences. Instead, he lives by the standard that is of God. When issues need to be properly judged, the king is to have a standard that is even-handed and right. The only standard known to man that is that way is the standard that belongs to the Lord. Too often man gets in the way of himself as he tries to administer justice; the subjectivity of evaluating motives makes even-handed justice difficult at best. A prime example of this is secular progressivism, or liberalism. There is no chance for justice to be rendered evenhandedly across the board because the standard of measurement is always floating, changing and fluid. My friends, reject the ways of man (Proverbs 14:12) and accept the ways of the Lord.

#justice, #word-to-the-wise

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11-9-2016 The Wicked Will Not Escape

“Because the sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil. Though a sinner does evil a hundred times, and his days are prolonged, yet I surely know that it will be well with those who fear God, who fear before Him. But it will not be well with the wicked; nor will he prolong his days, which are as a shadow, because he does not fear before God” (Ecclesiastes 8:11-13 NKJV).  When people aren’t immediately “struck down” from Heaven by God; or their case drags on through the court system; or there is not enough “justice” in the Justice System to bring about conviction, people think they have gotten away “scot-free!”  The human justice system may be completely corrupted, but God’s Judgment and punishment is not!

This is Johnny Polk, with “Words of Wisdom” brought to you by the Oneida church of Christ.

#justice, #scot-free, #wicked

Injustice in the world

If things in the world worked as they ought, you’d not have Hillary running for president, nor Trump, for that matter. Yesterday’s FBI release (made on the Friday of a long holiday weekend, a political tactic) of the transcript of the interview with Hillary shows yet again her lying through the teeth. Even with her obvious lies, the FBI director decided there was no reason to prosecute. Anybody else would have been in prison long ago.

My point here isn’t a political statement, but a spiritual one. Continue reading

#justice