Blind justice or not
He will judge the world with justice and rule the nations with fairness. – Psalms 9:8
Psalms 85:10 Lovingkindness and truth have met together; Righteousness and peace have kissed each other.
Jeremiah 23:5 For the time is coming,” says the LORD, “when I will raise up a righteous descendant from King David’s line. He will be a King who rules with wisdom. He will do what is just and right throughout the land.
When we see images, drawings, or caricatures of justice today, justice is depicted as a woman with a blindfold, scale of balances, and a sword pointed upward. The intended point is that justice is supposed to be blind. What exactly does that mean: fair, impartial, equal? Perhaps, it conveys the thought of not taking into consideration an individual’s country of origin, ethnicity, religion, skin color, or gender?
In the “old days,” and sadly, in much of the modern world, the standard for justice is uncomplicated: “might makes right.” This is been true down through the millennia. Basically, the wealthy and powerful can do whatever they want, unchallenged. They were not merely above the law; they were the law. Those in power determined what is right and wrong. They made the rules.
Where did their power and control come from? Diverse sources such as: wealth, family of origin, religion, race, ethnicity, gender, social status, etc. In such societies, there are the “haves” and the “have nots.” This is of course a rather uneven playing field.
The “pre-woke” definition of social justice manifested itself in being socially active and helping others: feeding those in need, taking care of your neighbor, volunteering your time and resources to those less fortunate than yourself.
The “woke” definition of social justice is something else entirely. As a social construct inspired by Marxism, it denigrates the concept of private property, and sees everything in terms of those with power vs. the powerless.
It promotes the myth that the government can fix everything. All people have to do is hand over their individual liberties and property to the state and it will make everything better, particularly for the powerless. But for those who started with material possessions or wealth, apparent power, or status, it doesn’t work out too well for them. They will be disenfranchised.
For those with a “woke,” socialistic mentality, societal problems stem from unjust social structures: an oppressed/oppressor construct. “Unjust structures” stem in part from poverty and the maldistribution of wealth, rephrasing it, “‘unjust social structures’ and in particular ‘the maldistribution of wealth’ are the real causes of evil in the world” (Francis Schaeffer).
The answer proposed by those with a “woke” social justice viewpoint is some type or egalitarian redistribution of wealth and property. This would create social justice and utter in utopia. Just ask yourself, how well has this worked out anytime, anywhere, in the world?
REFLECT & PRAY
True peace is not merely the absence of war, it is the presence of justice (Jane Addams). Jane Addams was the first woman awarded the Nobel Prize in 1930.
Father thank You that You are just and right. You defer to no one. The absolutes that you have provided us in the word of God provide a firm foundation for life, law, and justice.
Outside of biblical history, and the 10 Commandments of Moses and the laws found in the Torah, the existence of a wide-ranging law to which everyone was accountable was rare. This is obviously oversimplistic. But it communicates the idea. Hammurabi had a code. Ancient empires such is Egypt, Assyria, or China had laws derived from the power of the absolute monarch or ruler. The Greeks and Romans had laws and guidelines for life. Every society has “ rules,” but not everyone in society was governed by those rules.
In the “socialistic mentality,” societal problems stem from unjust social structures. “Unjust structures” stem in part from poverty and the maldistribution of wealth. Schaeffer, stated it like this, “‘unjust social structures’ and in particular ‘the maldistribution of wealth’ are the real causes of evil in the world” (Francis Schaeffer). Therefore, “social justice” is no more than a system of legalized theft (Francis Schaeffer).
In a theistic worldview, there is a God who exists. He created all that is and created people with whom He can interact. Without this type of a God, there are no absolutes, everything is arbitrary. Might always makes right!
But the Father has an entirely different way for society to function. He has provided absolute standards of right and wrong, good and evil. His absolutes are found in the word of God. Societies based on absolutes derived from the Scriptures have a legal framework and a consensus within which they function. For Americans this is expressed in one phrase from the Pledge of Allegiance which was added in 1954, “One Nation under God.”
Biblical justice rests upon the absolute truth from the word of God. Because we have absolute truth, we have justice which is impartial. So justice is not blind at all. Biblical justice provides equitable and evenhanded treatment for all under the law.
Everyone is judged based upon the Father’s absolutes and principles derived from them. Judges are bound to make objective decisions based upon the law. No favoritism is permitted Those who serve as witnesses or defendants, swear before God “to tell the truth the whole truth and nothing but the truth.”
The world had never seen anything quite like this concept before modern times. It came out of the Reformation in northern Europe in the sixteenth century.
The Reformation brought the countries of Western Europe that embraced it, the basis for society which gave rise to for freedom without chaos or capriciousness. The Bible provided a foundation for morals and law.
In 1905, Paul Robert created a mural which he entitled “Justice Lifts the Nations.” It is located in Lausanne, Switzerland on the stairway in the old Supreme Court Building. Each day, on the way to the courtrooms, the judges passed by the Bureau. It was the constant reminder that justice is not blind. Justice is derived from the absolutes provided by the Father God.
The mural depicts justice as a woman without a blindfold. She has a scale of balances and a sword. Her sword is pointed not vertically upward, but downward toward a book. On the book, it reads, “the Law of God.” The judges were to make their decisions based upon absolute truth, not truth for now, or arbitrary societal standards of the day.
In the foreground, many different types of legal cases are pictured. The point of the mural is simple, the law of God is the basis for justice and freedom.