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Sunday, August 04, 2019

Justice, No Peace

We've often heard, "No justice, no peace!" We get it. "Give us the result we demand or we will remove your sense of well-being." Okay, that's not what they intend to convey. But it's generally what comes from it. We can also figure the alternative: "Justice, peace!" The implication of the former is that if we have justice, we will have peace.

You'd think that would be true, but I beg to differ. At least, when it comes to actual justice.

You see, actual justice says, "The soul who sins shall die" (Ezek 18:20). Actual justice requires death (Rom 6:23). If I got my just deserts, I would get eternal torment.

Now, most of us don't really think that way. Most of us think we're pretty good. A slap on the wrist, perhaps, or maybe even some jail time or something, but all in all we're not that bad. If we think in terms of justice for ourselves we likely would consider it more like just desserts -- a pretty good thing -- because we're just not that bad. Scripture begs to differ.

I, for one, don't find peace in that justice. I find peace in God's grace and mercy. I find peace in His forgiveness. I don't really want that justice, thank you very much. Give me mercy any day.


David said...

You're first "just desserts" in the third paragraph is misspelled.

Craig said...

Excellent point. The “No justice, no peace” crowd usually isn’t interested in either justice or peace. It’s more about throwing a tantrum until I get what I want.

As much as we think we can, we really aren’t able to put aside our wants and prejudices and seek justice. When we start from the position that we’re objectively good and that we deserve God’s Love because we’re good, we misunderstand justice.

I too am much more personally comforted by God’s mercy, than by His justice. Although the fact that His justice will ultimately punish evil appropriately is comforting.

Stan said...

Actually, David, that one is spelled correctly. That use of "deserts" refers to "that which is deserved." The second one (4th paragraph) was intentional because we seem to think that what we deserve is pleasure ... like dessert.

Stan said...

Craig, it has been argued that the only valid basis for morality is the certainty of ultimate justice. If evil will not be punished/paid for, then morality is irrelevant. You're right.

David said...

English is hard. Deserts, deserts, and deserts, all different words.

Stan said...

Yeah. Look up "Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo." Actual sentence.