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What drives Justice?

April 17, 2009

Ever wonder about justice?

I don’t mean a definition of it, although you can look it up here.

What I’m talking about at the moment is how do come to an understanding of justice? What drives it? Surely there is some kind of standard moral code “out there” that identifies what is just and what is not just.

I mean, I don’t know anyone who, when exposed at a picture of a child carrying bricks on his head or covered in metal dust, would not feel some ounce of compassion for him. I came across a link through a twitter feed yesterday titled “To abolish child labour, you have to make it visible.” Have a look at those pictures. Props to the photo journalists who make it their business to bring to light realities like that.


Now, I’m a pastor at heart, and you can probably almost hear me gearing up to talk about God and the Bible, but before I do, I want to talk it a step further. Do me a favor and don’t ignore this. Walk with me on this. Humor me for a moment.

Now. I have a daughter, shes 2…the youngest of our 3…she has 2 older brothers 7 & 5.

She is so precious to me. She is my child…a gift from God as a result of the oneness that my wife and I share. My perspective is biased, but I think she is the most beautiful girl to grace this planet since my wife & before that, Eve. Nevertheless, when she comes running to the door, crying, “Daddy’s home! Daddy’s home! I missed you, Daddy,” it pretty near makes your heart break. I kid you not, she is the sweetest most precious girl.

I love her.

She is my only daughter.

I can’t imagine…

…it makes me sick to imagine my daughter in this kind of a situation.

International Justice Mission is an organization with offices all over the world, but with their main ones in Canada, USA, and the UK. By exploring their websites a little and a simple “ijm” search on youtube will get you some very heart-wrenching true stories.

The worst of them tell of little girls…very young girls. These girls are sold or taken into slavery. Yes, many of them are forced to perform unimaginable tasks in unhealthy environments day after day for a debt they did not owe, nor could they ever repay. They are slaves until they die or until someone (like Jamie McIntosh & the people at IJM Canada) rescues them.

What does some pictures and videos and stories like that do to your heart? Tweak it? Even a little?

Now to the God part.

I believe there are laws over every person’s heart that exist much like the law of gravity. I believe this because I believe God to be the creator of gravity & the creator of people (among other things). Because God created us in his image, I believe that part of that image is some kind of a sense of justice.

As we get to know God, our sense of justice will be more like his. Part of the problem with “justice” in the world today is due to the fact that we don’t know God and we are not like God. We become more and more partial to our own way of life and our own standard of doing things. Therefore, our standard of justice is tweaked a little from THE standard – God.

Deuteronomy 10:17-18:

For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great, the mighty, and the awesome God, who is not partial and takes no bribe. He executes justice for the fatherless and the widow, and loves the sojourner, giving him food and clothing.

How many of us can honestly say we are not partial? If I’m honest with you, I would tell you that I am partial. For example, I favour my own baby girl way more than I do my boys. I dont’ know what it is. Its not right, I know, but if something goes down at home between the kids and I don’t know what happened, I just hear yelling back and forth and crying in the other room, I automatically point my boney finger at the boys. That’s not right, and I am working on it. But that simple example brings this truth to light, that we naturally tend to our own prejudices and standards of justice.

Anyway, I’m not exactly sure what I’m getting at other than this: Our standard of justice ultimately comes from God. As we strive in our efforts for social justice, we must also strive in our efforts to know God. Find out what the Bible says about justice.

I believe that as we do, we will find our hearts will break more and more for the injustices that cover the face of this earth.

It is extremely sad, disturbing and sickening to think about my little girl in light of much of the sex slavery that goes on in Cambodia and Thailand. I would suggest though, that we are not as disheartened and sickened by it as much as God is. They are all his little girls.

Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world.
Red and yellow, black and white,
They are precious in his sight.
Jesus loves the little children of the world.


He must increase, I must decrease. John 3:30

He must increase, I must decrease. John 3:30

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