The Gospel of Luke | Justice | Luke 18.1-8 |

by | Oct 7, 2021

”Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’ “For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’” And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?” Luke 18.1-8

Justice: the quality of being just; righteousness, equitableness, or moral rightness: to uphold the justice of a cause. rightfulness or lawfulness, as of a claim or title; justness of ground or reason: to complain with justice.

When we think of the term “justice” we often think of social justice and the misinterpretations this has stirred over the years. Even in the work of the church, Christians have a different definitions and approaches to justice. What might be justice to one is abuse to another, and vica-versa.

But when Jesus speaks about justice he does so not from a human lens or view point but from God’s perspective. God’s justice is not always the same as what we might perceive justice to be in the world in which we live. God’s justice is higher than our understanding, greater than our desires, holier than our intentions.

So Jesus presents a parable to teach justice and does so by illustrating an interaction between between a widow and an ungodly judge. The widow kept coming to the judge and asking for justice by saying, “Grant me justice against my adversary.” Perhaps she had no one else to stand up for her rights. She had lost her husband and maybe had no other family to come to her aid. And for some time, the parable tells us, he refused to help. Eventually he decided to offer assistance – primarily so she would leave him alone!

In the same way, Jesus says, God will “bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night.” He will not keep putting them off, Jesus says, but will see that “they get justice and quickly.” Yet faith is required for justice to be received (v.8).

Too seldom do we persist in asking God to deliver us from our struggles, from our strife, from our defeats. Perhaps you have been wronged by the world and you are seeking justice, a type of fairness or compensation for your loss. But in truth, only the Lord can fully bring about healing and wholeness. His justice is evidenced in the forgiveness of sins and the promise of salvation. It may be that while on this earth we fail to achieve the kind of justice we think we deserve; but our reward will be in heaven for those who have faith and who persist in seeking the Lord and His will for their lives.

”O Lord God, you are good. You are good and you are just. We deserve death due to our sin. We deserve spiritual abandonment. But you are a good and loving God. You show mercy to those who seek mercy. You offer grace to those who seek grace. Come now, Lord God, and help us walk in accordance with your ways. For you are good and your love endures forever.” Amen