In under four minutes, Ken Wytsma, Founder of The Justice Conference, gives us his description of biblical justice. Four minutes? That’s about the same time it takes most of us to make a cup of tea.
Going a bit deeper…
In the Bible, God is called ‘a father to the fatherless, a defender of widows’ (Psalm 68:4-5) – always seeking to protect and provide for those who are vulnerable to exploitation.
He shows himself as a God who cares for the vulnerable and marginalised people in the world, and he frequently calls his people to be his agents in this care. ‘This is what the Lord Almighty says: Administer justice, show mercy and compassion to one another. Do not oppress the widow or the fatherless, the immigrant or the poor.’ (Zechariah 7:10- 11)
These are just two of over 2000 verses in the Bible which refer to issues of poverty and injustice!
The Bible may be full of references to justice but the idea of biblical justice is one that has been greatly misunderstood and debated over the centuries. The number of varying opinions out there can overwhelm us to the point where we stop grappling with what our understanding of it is.
If you’re in this boat, you’re not alone! A good place to begin is by reading what a few respected biblical commentators have to say about the topic.
Timothy Keller gives a great summary of his understanding of biblical justice here, in a short excerpt taken from his book, Generous Justice. A book we can highly recommend! For a list of some our other recommended reads, click here.
So what about biblical justice are you grappling with?