There are many themes in the Psalms, and a very clear one is the idea of God’s justice. David not only contends for it for himself and his people, but he also seeks to walk in that same justice himself. These are prayers which should be on our hearts as well, but the first step is understanding what it means for an action or outcome to be just in God’s eyes. The aim of this series is to bring us much-needed revelation of God’s brand of justice so that we can know it when we see it and make sure that we are walking in a way that is just.
You have a mighty arm; strong is your hand, high your right hand. Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne; steadfast love and faithfulness go before you.
It was not uncommon in his area of practice for the parties to reach an impasse in settlement negotiations. Whenever that occurred, the matter was presented to the judge in conference for a recommendation. Many times it was rather clear to both sides that the judge would merely split the difference between what the plaintiff wanted and what the defendant was willing to give, and most times that was a fair result. Sometimes, however, a judge would recommend a settlement that seemed well beyond the value of an injury. In those instances, he would plead his case for an equitable result, but it seemed like his idea of equity was often different than that of the judge. The problem was that the standard was subjective and its application could yield differing results from judge to judge.
If there is any comfort that can diffuse our nervousness or apprehension at what God might bring or do in our lives, let it be that we have a guarantee that his actions are always objectively just. When we read that righteousness and justice are the foundations of his throne, we may picture that God’s seat rests upon those virtues. We might see them as a base or floor that supports God’s position. This foundation, however, is more than that. It is not merely a support but is the basis for all God does. Not only does He act justly, but his actions are taken for the purpose of ensuring justice. He acts so that equity exists and prevails. God is like the repairman of life, and his mission is to set wrong things right. We can trust the work of God not because it carries the character of justice but because that is its purpose.
The greatest fault of man’s justice is that it is ever malleable. Differing social standards and historical changes in ideology mean that what was fair and equitable in a certain place or time can be seen as unjust in another place or time. Our desire for unending progress coupled with a lack of foundation in God’s standards are largely to blame. However, with God we know that what we get is fair within a set standard that endures the test of time. It is a reliable standard that bolsters our faith in the Father’s plans for our lives knowing He works to ensure that we receive what is just. Father, give us revelation of your righteousness and justice that we would have the discernment to know how to walk in them ourselves.