God of Justice
CB Samuel shared in our morning devotion on Tuesday the 11th September at the Micah Network Global Consultation, drawing from the Book of Amos. This October Prayer Focus Devotion is a summary of this session and a challenge for us as we intercede for Nations.
What does it mean to believe in a God Justice?
CB shared a story of his attendance at a multi faith conference where a discussion evolved about whether any of the gods in the religions around the world were concerned about justice or got angry over injustice. It was concluded that only the Judeo-Christian God revealed a characteristic that demonstrated his anger against injustice and his passion for justice.
It is important to note that justice is not a programme or project; it is the very characteristic of God. We often read about the holiness of God and that we are called to be holy as God is holy, but what does this look like? One of the ways that God reveals his holiness is through his passion and pursuit of justice. A holy God reveals himself as a God of Justice and we are called to be holy as he is. This clearly shows that justice, the pursuit of it, is a vital part of the church’s responsibility.
We read in Amos that God is passionate and angry about injustice (see verses “the Lord roars”.. Amos 1:2). Seeing injustice, standing for justice involves a strong emotion and we need to be careful that we do not approach social engagement in a clinical manner without letting it affect our emotions.
As we see injustice we need to seek the heart of God in our response – it is a heart that roars with indignation and fervour for justice.
Scope of Justice: Amos was initially sent by God to prophecy to the surrounding nations. This is important to consider, as we have often tended to think that justice is only for the People of God. However, the Bible shows us that God is concerned for justice for all nations, for every person, for creation. Our energy should not be curtailed to fighting for justice amongst our own people but wherever we see injustice, and against whomever it is aimed.
As we consider the subject of sin, we realise that we usually consider sin from a personal point of view, but there is also structural and social sin. Reading through Amos we see the he calls nations to account for their sin. What are the sins of our own nation? Exploitation of the poor, human rights abuses, how our nation deals with foreigners, how our nation treats so called “enemies” – all these national behaviours of injustice are areas we as Christians need to raise our voice about. We need to recognise that indifference or not being concerned about this not only grieves God’s heart but is itself a form of injustice. We need to take courage and speak out the truth. We are not called to political correctness we are called to speak out the truth and to stand for justice.
Our lifestyles need to reflect this as the integrity of our how we live will reinforce the authority we have as we speak.
Lord, we confess we have not been stirred to anger against injustice, nor have we spent our energy for justice. Forgive us Lord and create in us a heart for justice. Develop in us the characteristic that you have – the One who seeks Justice. May we in solidarity stand for truth and justice in our community, in our nation and in our world.