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If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. 2 Cor 5:17

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Go to the source! Discover what the Bible says about …

These pages are designed to aid study or investigation for Christian discipleship through individual Bible study, Cell groups, Home groups, or meeting one to one.  The questions could be used alone allowing each person to use their own Bible.

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Introduction

Justice is found when the law condemns wrong doers and helps those who have been harmed.  Many people are very keen for those who have harmed them to be brought to justice, while looking for their own wrongs to somehow be covered over.  Those looking for justice need to have a long look at how they would stand before a holy God.  Justice is precious to God who is the Father of all and shows no partiality between His children.


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Value of Justice

Here is how Jesus valued justice.  Matthew 23:23-24

  1. How did Jesus caricature the religion of the most religious group at the time?
  2. In our day, how is justice compared to obeying, or disobeying laws?
  3. In what aspects of your daily life are these values worked out?


Matthew 23:23-24    23 "What sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees. Hypocrites! For you are careful to tithe even the tiniest income from your herb gardens,* but you ignore the more important aspects of the law—justice, mercy, and faith. You should tithe, yes, but do not neglect the more important things.24 Blind guides! You strain your water so you won't accidentally swallow a gnat, but you swallow a camel!*


Basis for Justice

God asks us to show justice not on the basis of rights and duties but on the basis of His love for all involved.  Deuteronomy 24:17-18

  1. What is the power structure in  the examples of injustice given?
  2. What has God done for us, that He might ask favour for His other children?


 Deuteronomy 24:17-18   17 "True justice must be given to foreigners living among you and to orphans, and you must never accept a widow's garment as security for her debt.18 Always remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the LORD your God redeemed you from your slavery. That is why I have given you this command.


The Perversion of Justice

To those who are in authority, the Lord gave the following instructions.  Deuteronomy 16:19

  1. Why is it that receiving a gift will make a person blind to truth?
  2. What do you hope to gain?  How could that desire affect your decisions?


Deuteronomy 16:19 You must never twist justice or show partiality. Never accept a bribe, for bribes blind the eyes of the wise and corrupt the decisions of the godly.


True Religion

Isaiah 58:6-9  contrasts the religious forms of Isaiah’s day - days of fasting - with the values the Lord considers important.

  1. What injustices are mentioned by Isaiah?  What are equivalents in your culture?
  2. What could be involved for you in sharing with those in need?
  3. What outcome does the Lord promise for those who act like this?
  4. Note the similarity of this outcome with the original intention of fasting.


Isaiah 58:6-9    6 "No, this is the kind of fasting I want: Free those who are wrongly imprisoned;   lighten the burden of those who work for you. Let the oppressed go free,   and remove the chains that bind people. 7 Share your food with the hungry,   and give shelter to the homeless. Give clothes to those who need them,   and do not hide from relatives who need your help.

8 "Then your salvation will come like the dawn,   and your wounds will quickly heal. Your godliness will lead you forward,   and the glory of the LORD will protect you from behind. 9 Then when you call, the LORD will answer.   'Yes, I am here,' he will quickly reply


Justice not Abuse

All societies have abusive situations.  Outs will be different from Isaiah’s, and so we need to look to a principle of what is abuse rather than becoming limited by the demands of law.  Isaiah 58:9-12

  1. What forms of abuse are mentioned by Isaiah?
  2. What forms of support are presented as opportunities?
  3. What does the Lord promise for those who act like this?


 Isaiah 58:9-12      "Remove the heavy yoke of oppression.   Stop pointing your finger and spreading vicious rumors! 10 Feed the hungry,   and help those in trouble. Then your light will shine out from the darkness,   and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon. 11 The LORD will guide you continually,   giving you water when you are dry   and restoring your strength. You will be like a well-watered garden,   like an ever-flowing spring. 12 Some of you will rebuild the deserted ruins of your cities.   Then you will be known as a rebuilder of walls   and a restorer of homes.


Patient Prayer for Justice

The Lord assures that in the fullness of time he will bring justice.  Luke 18:7-8

  1. What does God promise for His people?
  2. What is God looking for from His people?


Luke 18:7-8  7 Even he rendered a just decision in the end. So don't you think God will surely give justice to his chosen people who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off?8 I tell you, he will grant justice to them quickly! But when the Son of Man* returns, how many will he find on the earth who have faith?"

JUSTICE