Injustice

<<discrimination, unfairness>>

Injustice occurs when someone takes the advantage over another; the Golden Rule of treating others as they would like to be treated has been neglected, by those only concerned about themselves (Mt 7:12). People use their position, size, power or wealth to oppress others.  God’s instruction was to appoint officials who would ensure justice was upheld, noting that bribes would corrupt the decision (Deut 16:18-20). John the Baptist gave this admonition for repentance, “Be finished with the corruption and injustice and live uprightly” (Lk 3:7-14). In Jesus’ day there were other injustices too, relating to the status of woman, slavery, the occupying Roman forces, and racial issues.

Jesus was treated unjustly and hated without reason (Jn 15:25). He did not retaliate, but “entrusted Himself to God who judges justly” (1Pet 2:23). This should be our response too. If we react in the flesh, trying to justify ourselves when criticized, this causes conflict. Although we should not defend ourselves, we should stand up for the under-

   Am I guilty of injustice? Do I                         always treat others fairly?

privileged, disadvantaged and those unable to fend for themselves, ministering to the basic human needs of those deprived of them (Jas 1:27). Those that practice injustice will give account of this before God (Rom 14:12; Col 3:25).

Frequently people believe their parents, marriage partner, employer, or life in general has treated them unfairly and violated their rights   However, we may ask if they are as quick to fulfill their responsibilities to the same people? If we have been treated this way, rather than taking revenge or retaliating, the radical teaching of Jesus was to counter with love and forgiveness, praying for those who trouble us (Rom 12:14,17). This lifestyle operates in the opposite spirit, turning the other cheek, overcoming evil with good, and so acting as real sons of God, by “Blessing those who curse you” (Mt 5:38-48; Rom 12:21; 1 Pet 3:9). If you consider you are being treated unjustly do not be take on a martyr mentality, believing you have no options and are solely at the mercy of your oppressors, for although externally you may be afflicted you are still in charge of your attitudes, so don’t surrender your core values. It is not what happens to us, rather our response to it which is the critical issue and for which we must answer.

Injustice is deeply entrenched in the human heart and doesn’t just disappear because people become Christians. Justice is a discipleship issue and communities need teaching how to apply justice –  not just looking out for self, but reaching out to hurting humanity with the love of Christ. Justice is the proper basis of our relationship with our fellow man. Without it, society is characterised by discrimination, inequality, corruption and cruelty. The Bible states, “He who sows injustice will reap calamity” (Prov 22:8).

God’s timeless message is to stop oppressing those who work for you and treat them fairly, meet the needs of those around you, live out your faith by ministering to the necessities of those who are bereft of life’s basics (Isa 58:6-10; Jas 2:14-17). As children of God, we should exhibit His qualities; one of these is there is no injustice or partiality with Him (Mic 6:8; 2 Chr 19:7; Act 10:34; Jas 2:1-12).

See also: abuse, discrimination, favouritism, golden rule, insults, justice, rights, unfair, victim mentality.


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