Christianity and Justice
Christianity emphasises justice, while others emphasise compassion; this statement is fundamental in the belief of Christians. Justice means to have moral rightness that is based on ethics, civil laws, natural laws and religion. One of the Ten Commandments states, “Love thy neighbor as thy self”. This Statement was repeated seven times in the Bible, once in the Old Testament and six times in the New Testament. It is quite clear to me that our capacity to have this kind of love must be foremost in the mind of God, this also demonstrates that all individuals should be treated equally and as you would like others to treat you.
Justice equated to equality. The Christian bible has many examples from both the old and New Testament that gives examples of Jesus wanting all his followers to treat each other in a just way. E. g. when he came across a lady who had been caught in the act of adultery and the crowds wanted to stone her to death and Jesus reminded them that they were all guilty of sin and they he who had not sinned should cast the first stone.
Jesus throughout the many encounters with believers and non-believers has spread the message of justice and peace. In Isaiah 56:1 this is what the Lord says “Maintain justice and do what is right, ? for my salvation is close at hand and my righteousness will soon be revealed. This conveys Christianity as a religion, is based on the belief that all people should be treated equally and those who fault should be forgiven. It is a religion based on forgiveness and therefore a religion, which places value on justice.
Example from the New Testament is Luke 16 – The Rich Man and the Beggar, the is about a rich man who was greedy and did not share his wealth nor listed to the guidance that was offered to him while on earth and the beggar who lived a poor but good life and shared what little he had with others. On death both men were judged by God and the rich man asked if he could return to warn his bothers so that they could change their ways and God answered that all people are treated equally and all have the same opportunities to follow his example and that he would not be given special privileged just because he was rich on earth.
An example of a similar scenario is the quote “Blessed Are the Poor in Spirit” found in Matthew 5:1-13 Throughout the ages the faith of Christianity continues to demonstrate that its followers choose to live a life based on justice that comes from equality. The church does not value its members by their individual wealth or social standing and many not for profit organizations are Christian based. These were commenced to give people Christian or otherwise a fair go and an opportunity to participate on an equal standing in our community.
Families who take advantage of this assistance do so in times of hardship. Organizations such as Centacare – Catholic community services or Anglicare – Anglican based are there to service the community, as a whole regardless of religious believes. Their service to the community is to ensure a level of equality for all. Jesus’ teachings were about looking after one another, being equal and not judging or discriminating against someone.
Martin Luther was determined to focus on Jesus’ teachings, as the “somewhat corrupt” practices performed by the Vatican became Particularly troubling to him, as it was against the nature of divine justice, which Jesus had once shown. Martin Luther wanted the adherents of Christianity to be able to access the teachings of Jesus Christ without the Vatican selling indulgences, which was basically the buying of forgiveness of sins instead of repentance and/or penance. In conclusion, I believe the quote “Christianity emphasises Justice, while others emphasise compassion” is still in practice in today’s society as it was in the days of Jesus.