Loving Justice

Isaiah 9:17 “Therefore the Lord shall have no joy in their young men, neither shall have mercy on their fatherless and widows: for every one is an hypocrite and an evildoer, and every mouth speaketh folly. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still.”

What is justice? Webster’s 1828 dictionary describes it this way:

Webster’s 1828 Dictionary

JUST’ICE, n. L. justitia, from justus, just.

1. The virtue which consists in giving to every one what is his due; practical conformity to the laws and to principles of rectitude in the dealings of men with each other; honesty; integrity in commerce or mutual intercourse. Justice is distributive or commutative. Distributive justice belongs to magistrates or rulers, and consists in distributing to every man that right or equity which the laws and the principles of equity require; or in deciding controversies according to the laws and to principles of equity. Commutative justice consists in fair dealing in trade and mutual intercourse between man and man.

2. Impartiality; equal distribution of right in expressing opinions; fair representation of facts respecting merit or demerit. In criticisms, narrations, history or discourse, it is a duty to do justice to every man, whether friend or foe.

3. Equity; agreeableness to right; as, he proved the justice of his claim. This should, in strictness, be justness.

4. Vindictive retribution; merited punishment. Sooner or later, justice overtakes the criminal.

5. Right; application of equity. His arm will do him justice.

6. Low L. justiciarius. A person commissioned to hold courts, or to try and decide controversies and administer justice to individuals; as the Chief Justice of the king’s bench, or of the common pleas, in England; the Chief Justice of the supreme court in the United States, &c. and justices of the peace.

JUST’ICE, v.t. To administer justice. Little used.

It says that justice is a virtue; practical conformity, or impartiality. Try to find that on the news today. Please, don’t think me so cynical of mankind that I take a defeatist attitude. No, I have such hope for us – and especially at this time.

You see, justice, judgment and truth all go hand in hand.

Isaiah 59:14-15 “And judgment is turned away backward, and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter. Yea, truth faileth; and he that departeth from evil maketh himself a prey: and the LORD saw it, and it displeased him that there was no judgment.”

When truth becomes relative and we become separated by color, creed and culture, Satan has succeeded in drawing such lines of division that seem impossible to ever join together in a common cause. The church today has taken up issues of social justice instead of what she has been called to do – preach the gospel, win souls, baptize and disciple the saved.

We rely far too heavily on emotion on not enough on the Word of God. The stark reality is how little we know about the God we say we serve. Churches promote drinking in moderation when the Bible condemns it. Some lift up perversion as acceptable and even allow homosexuals to become ministers. Sin is winked at and God is nowhere near.

Right about now, your amount of political correctness is either balking at some of the statements I’ve made, or you are agitated that I would even bring up such subjects. Which begs the question – If God is truly sovereign over all, why wouldn’t we go to Him and His Word for answers to the hard questions and subjects of the day?

So… why the text from Isaiah? It truly represents the heart of God to every sinner. On the one hand, God is just – sin MUST be paid for. He cannot have it in His presence and will not allow one taint of sin into Heaven. It is a pure, perfect and holy place. Lucifer, now Satan, fell like lightning for the pride that rose in his heart against God. What makes us think that He is any more accepting of our sin than that of a fallen angel?

On the other hand is the provision of forgiveness offered to us. Because of His love, He gave us Jesus Christ in the flesh. The death, burial and resurrection of God’s Son made the way for every sinner to be saved. Without it, we stand condemned of sins that have the penalty of hell for all eternity. The stark contrast of justice with the fact that His hand is outstretched still shows His justice to be pure, loving and good.

Historically, the Israelites, as a nation, were on a constant merry-go-round of forgiveness and rebellion that it is surprising that God took them back at all! Yet, He exercised His justice against their sin and offered forgiveness – every time!

Too often, we mistake God’s longsuffering for approval and forget that He is just. The space of time given is for us, His children, to repent of our sin and come clean. America is living on that longsuffering. She has taken God’s Word out of her schools; murdered her unborn and elevates and legislates perversion, immorality and injustice over righteousness, godliness and morality.

It must start personally – with each who name the name of Jesus Christ to desire and practice personal holiness. “…his hand is outstretched still” means that He has left the door open to get things right. The exercise of our free will must demonstrate our love for what has been provided for us through Jesus Christ.

His hand is outstretched still‘ is to pull us from the muck and mire of our own sin.

His hand is outstretched still‘ demonstrates an unconditional love that goes beyond any lines, limits and boundaries of justice to draw us into His loving mercy, grace and forgiveness. Our enemy preys upon our ignorance of the depth of God’s love and forgiveness in this area.

His hand is outstretched still‘ To you… Today. Will you reach out to grasp hold?

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