Righteousness and Justice

As we talked about last Sunday, the ideas of righteousness and justice are intertwined in scripture. In fact, in the New Testament both of the English words come from the same Greek root. They are translated interchangeably depending on the context. Based on this connection, it would stand to reason that any followers of Christ who believe that righteousness is important should also place a great value on justice. In their book, The Justice Calling: Where Passion Meets Perseverance, Hoang and Johnson explain how this relates to God and people in both positive and negative ways.
“The two greatest commandments identified by Jesus—to love God and to love your neighbor as yourself—are the flip side of the two most prevalent sins throughout Scripture: idolatry and injustice. Failing to love God leads to idolatry, while failing to love others leads to injustice. Another way of putting this is to say that the call to love God and love our neighbors is a call to righteousness and justice.”
Based on that idea, it would stand to reason that any followers of Christ who want to avoid idolatry should also believe that it is important to avoid injustice. We live in a world that celebrates and even encourages idolatry. Injustices are all around us. Many of us have experienced them, although we may tend to minimize the ones we do not see as important or that do not affect us directly. God wants us to be concerned about all idolatry and injustice. He wants us to work actively to correct them and to instead promote righteousness and justice. Let’s join Him in that work.
“But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it— the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins.” – Romans 3:21-25

Leave a Reply