‘For the LORD is righteous, he loves justice; upright men will see his face.’
When thinking about justice, some people think first about giving wrongdoers the punishment they deserve. It evokes ideas of ‘just deserts’, ’the punishment fitting the crime’, ‘an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth’. However, justice also means giving all people - particularly the poor and oppressed - what it is right and fair for them to have: life, health, freedom and dignity. It is about acting out of a concern for what is right and seeing right prevail. It is about social justice, especially for those who suffer most and are least able to protect themselves.
Throughout the Bible, it is emphasised that justice is immensely important to God, it is fundamental to God’s character.
Justice is not about a culture which encourages everyone to insist on their own rights at the expense of others. It is about a community that knows that everyone’s well-being is bound up with that of everyone else. A commitment to justice leads to fierce opposition to injustice in whatever form it may be found. It is is a pre-requisite of peace: without justice there can be no peace.
How can we show justice in school?