MIRRORING OUR HEAVENLY FATHER | God of Justice : Part 3

Principles of a Just God

Have you ever come across a child, observed their behavior – both good and bad, and immediately thought about who their parents are? It comes naturally. Not because parents are solely responsible for the child’s character, but because every child, in some way or the other, mirrors their caretaker’s behavior.

Over the past two blogs, we talked about our heavenly father being a Just God and then how He wants us to be Just in every way and every time. Today, I want to share with you some basic underlying principles from the Word of God on how we can become daughters and sons who mirror our Just Father in an unjust world. Simply because when we become His children, we become aliens and strangers to the world which lives on its own principles. Children live by the principles of their parents or guardian, not strangers.

Are you and I claiming to be sons and daughters of God, but not displaying Jesus in our talk, actions and living? Then I’m afraid, if we do this, we may not enter the kingdom of heaven, as Jesus said in Matthew 7 : 21 – “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of My Father in heaven.”

The truth is that we are called to mirror Him here on earth as it will be in heaven. Today, let us choose to make that commitment. Let us not misrepresent Him, half represent Him or not represent Him, let’s mirror Him as He is – a Just God. We can mirror our heavenly father only when we live, think and talk based on His principles that are all about love, justice and mercy.

So how do we do it? The commonly known ‘Golden rule’ is the foundational principle to every other principle in the word of God when it comes to living for God.

Let us not misrepresent Him, half represent Him or not represent Him, let’s mirror Him as He is – a Just God.

So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets. Matthew 7 : 12

If we can begin to apply this in every facet of life, we will be living testimonies of Jesus across this world. All we got to do is treat others the way we would want ourselves to be treated. Would you want to be helped? Then help. Would you want to be given second chances? Then give. Would you like to grow? Then allow others to grow, better still, help them grow.

There are principles based on the basic principle of doing to others what you would have them do to you –

  • FREELY RECEIVED TO FREELY GIVE

When Jesus began His ministry here on earth, the word of God records His first miracle as turning water to wine for a wedding, where the family ran out of the drink for guests (John 2). We see that He gave so freely the grace, the power and anointing that He already received. Not to say, the greatest thing that Jesus gave freely for us was His life. He died on the cross for our sins, iniquities, shortcomings, weaknesses and insecurity, when he had no err in Himself.

If we realise that everything that we have is freely given to us by God – spiritual bondages of pride, insecurity and double mindedness will begin to break away from our lives.

If we understand and practice this principle of our Just Father to give freely because we have freely received, it will be the first step to a completely transformed mind and character. Yes! If we realise that everything that we have is given to us freely by God – spiritual bondages of pride, insecurity and double mindedness will begin to break away from our lives.

When Jesus was sending out the disciples to preach the good news of the Kingdom of God, He told them this one principle to be servant leaders – which is a root characteristic to being ‘Just’. He said in Matthew 10 : 8, “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you received; freely give.” As believers in Christ, we have received God’s unending love, mercy, forgiveness, kindness, healing, provision and so much more. What Jesus was saying is that if you received it freely, you give it to others too freely. Not at a cost. Don’t only give because they will return it, give because God asked you to. Don’t only show mercy because they deserve it, show mercy to the one who didn’t do anything to deserve it. Freely you have received it all, freely give it all.

  • MERCY AND FORGIVENESS BEFORE JUDGEMENT

When Peter asked Jesus how many times to forgive someone, you can imagine that he was coming from a place of despair of forgiving the person over and over again to the point where he felt ‘really when should I stop forgiving this person and judge them for what they did to me?’. So Jesus then shares a beautiful parable to explain how someone who has been shown mercy should show more mercy to anyone who wrongs them (Matthew 18 : 21 – 35).

Being Just begins with being merciful and forgiving. Yes, this is a paradox. But it is the truth.

God who is holy, blameless, blemishless and spotless, so willfully sacrificed His only son to bring forgiveness to us, who sinned against him. Then who are we, full of our own faults, weaknesses, and imperfections, not to forgive a brother or sister who wronged us?

Being Just begins with being merciful and forgiving. Yes this is a paradox. But it’s the truth. You may ask how. You see, first of all, when we ourselves are being forgiven and shown mercy by a perfect God , it is only just for us to forgive and show mercy to our fellow imperfect beings. Secondly, when we are merciful and forgiving to someone, we are being just by giving them another chance at being the true, holy, pure creation that God created them to be.

  • BETRAYING COMPARISON

If we want to be just to those around us, we first need to understand and value everyone around us the way God understands and values them.

Jesus put this so well in a parable He shared with his disciples. He talked about how a master paid the same wages (that he had vowed to) to the worker who worked the whole day and also to the worker who just worked towards the end of the day.

When the workers who worked the whole day told the master that he was being unfair. The master simply reminded them that they were paid what they were told in the beginning.

Look how simply because they compared themselves to the other workers, the wages that they would usually be happy and content with seemed less.

Isn’t this so applicable to us?

We don’t appreciate, help, support and encourage and sometimes become unjust to people whom we compare ourselves with. In that process, we end up carrying out injustice to the person, who God so dearly loves.

When our friends are getting married one after the other, we tell God that He is being unfair to us by not letting it happen as yet. When someone else gets a job so easily, we question God for not making it happen to us. But what we don’t realise is that God never told us or gave us a word that He will get us married or get us that job that early. He would do it, but at the right time. In fact, at this time, God probably wants you to be doing something else to help you grow and fulfill the purpose He has for you.

Comparison causes us to be unjust to those around us. We don’t appreciate, help, support and encourage, sometimes become unjust, to people whom we compare ourselves with. In that process, we end up carrying out injustice to the person, who God so dearly loves.

We need to betray comparison and become just to one another, loving one another the way Christ loves us.

My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. – John 15 : 12

  • GENEROUS LIVING AND GIVING

This is what Jesus told the disciples in Luke 6 : 30-36, “…Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you. “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back…”

A person who is generous from their heart will be just in all their actions.

Being generous has been something that Jesus talked about and the disciples reiterated over and over again in their letters. It is not only about finances, it is about being generous in giving and living in everything, from your love to your belongings. A person who is generous from their heart will be just in all their actions.

You see, generosity causes us to think beyond ourselves and step into the other person’s shoe. It automatically makes us treat them the way we would like be to treated. Yet, generosity begins from acknowledging that all we have belongs to God.

So are your homes open to the lonely and brokenhearted? Do you generously show love to the old person who just needs someone to talk to? Are you staying up to look after the sick?

In fact, generosity is a channel to justice. Let’s learn to be generous to all those around us, setting an example of Christ’s love.

Paul said in 2 Corinthians 9 : 11,12 – “You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God”

God wants us to not only put our faith in Him, but also be like Him – JUST in all we do. It begins with living out the principles that He laid out for us in His word.

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A JUST GOD | God of Justice : Part 1

The LORD loves righteousness and justice…

Psalms 33 : 5

SERIES : Part 1

The woman left desolate, the little child deserted by parents, the hungry, the broken, the afflicted, the poor, the oppressed, the foreigner, the lost – God’s heart beats and breaks for them. He longs to save them, help them and build them up again. And, He does. He always does. He is a God of Justice. He is the Savior of the weak and the poor. He came for the lost.

When we read the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, one of the constant understanding of God that comes through is His love for justice. He cannot overlook an unjust act, whether it is meted out to His creation or by His creation. He will act swiftly to bring justice to the one suffering.

In fact, this God, who is a just God, brought us the greatest gift of redemption by going through utmost injustice of laying down His only true and holy Son, Jesus, for our iniquities and mistakes. His justice made Him sacrifice His son for us and justify us for every sin and unrighteous act of ours, and the same justice will cause Him to judge the living and the dead in the ultimate judgement of humankind.

You may be going through injustice in some way or the other. May be you are being mistreated in a foreign land, you are dealt with unjustly at your work place or college, you’re oppressed by people around you or even spiritually and mentally, you are needy and can’t find help, you are cast out from everyone, everywhere. Today, this word is a word of encouragement, understanding and reminder to you that the God of Justice is near you and He will not forsake you.

This is the heart of the one true God –

  • HE LOOKS OUT FOR THE OUTCAST

Have you ever thought that no one looks at the oppression you are facing? No one sees and no one cares? Well, let me take you through the story of a slave woman who was mistreated by her mistress and was not even part of the nation that God wanted to bless through Abraham’s descendants – Yet, when she ran away from her mistress and was in a hopeless place – God SAW her. God rescued Hagar.

In Genesis 16 : 13, it says, “She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her: “You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.””

God sees you, beloved. Your suffering, your loneliness, the oppression you go through, the rejection you face, the helpless state you are in, your poverty and your hunger.

He is the real superhero that we all long for and hope for. He is watching over us and He will come to save us at the right time.

Here’s what the Word of God says in Psalms 68 : 5-6,9-10, “A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families, he leads out the prisoners with singing; You gave abundant showers, O God; you refreshed your weary inheritance. Your people settled in it, and from your bounty, God, you provided for the poor.”

God is always on the side of those in need, those crushed in spirit. He sees them and he comes to their rescue. He is the real superhero that we all long for and hope for. He is watching over us and He will come to save us at the right time. As the Psalmist says in Psalms 103:6 – “The Lord works righteousness and justice for all who are oppressed.”

He is just a call away, a cry away, a shout out away. Call unto Him and He will surely hear you.

“He upholds the cause of the oppressed and gives food to the hungry. The Lord sets prisoners free, the Lord gives sight to the blind, the Lord lifts up those who are bowed down, the Lord loves the righteous. The Lord watches over the foreigner and sustains the fatherless and the widow, but he frustrates the ways of the wicked.” – Psalms 146 : 7-9

  • HE LEVELS UNEVEN GROUNDS

One thing that the Lord intends to do and is repeated over and over across the Word of God is – Leveling uneven grounds. Additionally, in their contexts, what God is trying to convey is to set things right where they are not. More so, in the context of the oppressed and the poor.

A lot of times, we are trying to fight our oppression, our poverty or our loneliness on our own strength and in worldly ways. But, the heart of God is to level uneven grounds and to lift up the weak and the poor. Only, only if we rely and trust God and His justice rather than worldly temporal solutions, we would receive such an abundance of blessing and deliverance.

Isaiah prophesised several times of God saying that He will ‘not forsake the blind, poor and weak’, that He will ‘go before them and make the crooked places straight’.

In Isaiah 42 : 16, He says, “And I will bring the blind by a way that they knew not; I will lead them in paths that they have not known: I will make darkness light before them, and crooked things straight. These things will I do unto them, and not forsake them.”

The heart of God is to level uneven grounds and to lift up the weak and the poor. Only, only if we rely and trust God and His justice rather than worldly temporal solutions, we would receive such an abundance of blessing and deliverance.

In fact, God’s word as a promise says that He will make the poor inherit the throne of glory, lift the weak up and seat them among princes, and make the childless woman a mother of many children (Isaiah 45:2, 40:4 and Psalms 113:7-8).

Beloved, God intends to set everything right that is not right. He won’t leave you where you are, He promises to lift you out and place you where He has created you to be – a glorious place.  If you are in a place of injustice, remind yourself today that the God of justice will lift you up from the ashes and place you in the highest of places. He will make all the crooked paths straight.

  • IT IS GOD’S TO AVENGE

So often, we long to ‘pay back’ for the injustice that we face. We want to fight back for justice. In today’s world, everyone wants to fight for justice; except without any weighs or balance to it.

Yet, do you know what God says we must do when someone we love or we ourselves face injustice? We must trust and commit it to the Lord and He will avenge for us.

In Deuteronomy 32 : 35, God says, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay. In due time their foot will slip; their day of disaster is near and their doom rushes upon them.”

Do not fret because if we trust God and commit every injustice meted out to us into His loving hands, the word of God says that ‘He will make our righteousness shine forth as the dawn’.

In fact, in Isaiah 35, we see how God is blessing those who face injustice and are facing troubles for no wrong. In verse 4, this is what God says to them – “Say to those with fearful hearts, “Be strong, do not fear; your God will come, he will come with vengeance; with divine retribution he will come to save you.”

What did the Israelites, who were mistreated by the Egyptians, do? In Deuteronomy 26:7, it says, “Then we cried to the Lord, the God of our fathers, and the Lord heard our voice and saw our affliction, our toil, and our oppression.”

Do not fret because if we trust God and commit every injustice meted out to us into His loving hands, the word of God says that ‘He will make our righteousness shine forth as the dawn’. He will avenge on our behalf. He is a God who avenges, a God of Justice. All we need to do is cry out to Him and He will save us.

Nevertheless, also remember, God is a forgiving, compassionate and merciful God. So, if someone who has been unjust towards anyone else repents for their mistake, God will surely forgive them. And, He expects us to forgive too – as Jesus prayed in Matthew 6:14 – “For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.”

  • HE TAKES EVIL AND TURNS IT FOR GOOD

While He is just, we also need to constantly remind ourselves that He is God – Sovereign over all. The Bible says that He never sleeps nor slumbers, even the hair on every person’s head is numbered, He knows our thoughts and the deepest secrets of our heart.

It may be the most unbearable and unpleasant thing to face at the time, but hold on because you know that the God of Justice can turn it around and work it for the best of you.

Can this Sovereign yet Just God not work all things for our good? The good news is – He has always worked it out for the good, is working it out for the good and will continue working it out for the good.

Look at Joseph’s life, which is narrated in Genesis. He was insulted and rejected by His own brothers, sold as a slave, falsely accused and thrown into prison, forgotten by those whom he saved and yet in the end, God used all of it to make him Prime Minister of Egypt and not only that, God also blessed Israel (Jacob) through him. That is why in Genesis 50 : 20, Joseph declares – “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.”

I have always come across God using all injustice and suffering that His people go through for their own good. He works it out for the good. It may be the most unbearable and unpleasant thing to face at the time, but hold on because you know that the God of Justice can turn it around and work it for the best of you.

With bold assurance in this fact, Paul declares in Romans 8 : 28, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

He cannot overlook an unjust act, whether it is meted out to His creation or by His creation. He will act swiftly to bring justice to the one suffering.

Beloved, like Hagar and Joseph and thousand others who received justice in the face of injustice by calling out to the one who is JUST, come to this Just God who went through injustice to give you life eternal. Trust Him with your life and watch how He makes your righteousness shine forth like the dawn.

A prayer: Lord, I pray for any person reading this blog, who has faced or is facing any kind of injustice – small or big, that you come and heal their broken hearts and give them the strength to trust you. Lord, you are their avenger. I pray that you may work all things out for their good and level every uneven ground in their lives. Bless them, Lord. In Jesus’ matchless name we pray, Amen.

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