Social Justice is God's Idea
Isa 1:17-28 Amplified
17 Learn to do right ! Seek justice, relieve the oppressed, and correct the oppressor. Defend the fatherless, plead for the widow.
18 Come now, and let us reason together, says the Lord. Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be like wool.
19 If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land;
20 But if you refuse and rebel, you will be devoured by the sword. For the mouth of the Lord has spoken it.
21 How the faithful city has become an [idolatrous] harlot, she who was full of
justice ! Uprightness and right standing with God [once] lodged in her--
but now murderers.
22 Your silver has become dross, your wine is mixed with water.
23 Your princes are rebels and companions of thieves; everyone loves bribes
and runs after compensation and rewards. They judge not for the fatherless
nor defend them, neither does the cause of the widow come to them [for they
delay or turn a deaf ear].
24 Therefore says the Lord, the Lord of hosts, the Mighty one of Israel, Ah, I will appease Myself on My adversaries and avenge Myself on My enemies.
25 And I will bring My hand again upon you and thoroughly purge away your
dross [ as with lye ] and take away all your tin or alloy.
26 And I will restore your judges as at the first, and your counselors as at the beginning; afterward you shall be called the City of Righteousness, the Faithful City.
27 Zion shall be redeemed with justice, and her [returned] converts with righteousness (uprightness and right standing with God).
28 But the crushing and destruction of rebels and sinners shall be together, and they who forsake the Lord shall be consumed.
Mal 3:2-7 NKJV
2 "But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner's fire and like launderers' soap. 3 He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, That they may offer to the LORD an offering in righteousness.
4 "Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasant to the LORD, as in the days of old, as in former years. 5 And I will come near you for judgment; I will be a swift witness against sorcerers,
against those who exploit wage earners and widows and orphans,
and against those who turn away an alien
Because they do not fear Me," Says the LORD of hosts.
6 "For I am the LORD, I do not change; Therefore you are not consumed, O sons
of Jacob. 7 Yet from the days of your fathers You have gone away from My ordinances And have not kept them. Return to Me, and I will return to you," Says
the LORD of hosts.
Deut 24:14-15 NKJV
14 "You shall not oppress a hired servant who is poor and needy, whether one of your brethren or one of the aliens who is in your land within your gates. 15 Each day you shall give him his wages, and not let the sun go down on it, for he is poor and has set his heart on it; lest he cry out against you to the LORD, and it be sin to you.
Luke 6:24-25 AMP
24 But woe to (alas for) you who are rich ( abounding in material resources), for you already are receiving your consolation (the solace and sense of strengthening and cheer that come from prosperity) and have taken and enjoyed your comfort in full [ having nothing left to be awarded you ].
25 Woe to (alas for) you who are full now (completely filled, luxuriously gorged and satiated), for you shall hunger and suffer want! Woe to (alas for) you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep and wail!
This is one of my most favorite stories in the Bible, and because Jesus told it while on this earthdeserves our close attention !
Luke 16:19-31 AMP
19 There was a certain rich man who [habitually] clothed himself in purple and fine linen and reveled and feasted and made merry in splendor every day.
20 And at his gate there was [carelessly] dropped down and left a certain utterly destitute man named Lazarus, [reduced to begging alms and] covered with [ulcerated] sores.
21 He [ eagerly ] desired to be satisfied with what fell from the rich man's table; moreover, the dogs even came and licked his sores.
22 And it occurred that the man [ reduced to ] begging died and was carried by
the angels to Abraham's bosom. The rich man also died and was buried.
23 And in Hades (the realm of the dead), being in torment, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham far away, and Lazarus in his bosom.
24 And he cried out and said, Father Abraham, have pity and mercy on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, for I am in anguish in this flame. [ Oh how the arrogance continues even in the afterlife ! ]
25 But Abraham said, Child, remember that you in your lifetime fully received
[ what is due you in ] comforts and delights, and Lazarus in like manner the discomforts and distresses; but now he is comforted here and you are in anguish.
26 And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, in order that those who want to pass from this [ place ] to you may not be able, and no one may pass from there to us.
27 And [ the man ] said, Then, father, I beseech you to send him to my father's house--
28 For I have five brothers--so that he may give [solemn] testimony and warn
them, lest they too come into this place of torment.
29 But Abraham said, They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear
and listen to them.
30 But he answered, No, father Abraham, but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent ( change their minds for the better and heartily amend their ways, with abhorrence of their past sins).
31 He said to him, If they do not hear and listen to Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be persuaded and convinced and believe [even] if someone should rise from the dead.
James 5:1-11 AMP
1 COME NOW, you rich [ people], weep aloud and lament over the miseries
(the woes) that are surely coming upon you.
2 Your abundant wealth has rotted and is ruined, and your [many] garments
have become moth-eaten.
3 Your gold and silver are completely rusted through, and their rust will be
testimony against you and it will devour your flesh as if it were fire. You have
heaped together treasure for the last days.
4 [ But ] look! [ Here are ] the wages that you have withheld by fraud from the laborers who have reaped your fields, crying out [for vengeance]; and the cries
of the harvesters have come to the ears of the Lord of hosts.
5 [ Here] on earth you have abandoned yourselves to soft (prodigal) living and
to [ the pleasures of ] self-indulgence and self-gratification.
You have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter.
6 You have condemned and have murdered the righteous (innocent man),
[ while ] he offers no resistance to you.
7 So be patient, brethren, [as you wait] till the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits expectantly for the precious harvest from the land. [ See how ] he keeps up his patient [ vigil ] over it until it receives the early and late rains.
8 So you also must be patient. Establish your hearts [ strengthen and confirm
them in the final certainty ], for the coming of the Lord is very near.
9 Do not complain, brethren, against one another, so that you [ yourselves ]
may not be judged. Look! The Judge is [ already ] standing at the very door.
10 [ As ] an example of suffering and ill-treatment together with patience, brethren, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord [ as His messengers ].
11 You know how we call those blessed (happy) who were steadfast [ who
endured ]. You have heard of the endurance of Job, and you have seen the
Lord's [ purpose and how He richly blessed him in the ] end,
inasmuch as the Lord is full of pity and compassion and tenderness
and mercy. [Job 1:21,22; 42:10; Ps 111:4.]
1 Tim 6:18-19 AMP
18 [ Charge them] to do good, to be rich in good works, to be liberal and
generous of heart, ready to share [with others],
19 In this way laying up for themselves [ the riches that endure forever as ]
a good foundation for the future, so that they may grasp that which is life indeed.
Rev 2:9-11 AMP
9 I know your affliction and distress and pressing trouble and your poverty--but
you are rich ! and how you are abused and reviled and slandered by those who
say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan.
10 Fear nothing that you are about to suffer. [ Dismiss your dread and your fears ! ] Behold, the devil is indeed about to throw some of you into prison, that you may
be tested and proved and critically appraised, and for ten days you will have affliction. Be loyally faithful unto death [ even if you must die for it ], and I will give
you the crown of life. [Rev 3:10,11.]
11 He who is able to hear, let him listen to and heed what the Spirit says to the assemblies (churches). He who overcomes (is victorious) shall in no way be
injured by the second death.
Rev 13:16-18 AMP
16 Also he compels all [ alike], both small and great, both the rich and the poor, both free and slave, to be marked with an inscription [ stamped ] on their right
hands or on their foreheads,
17 So that no one will have power to buy or sell unless he bears the stamp (mark, inscription), [ that is ] the name of the beast or the number of his name.
18 Here is [ room for ] discernment [ a call for the wisdom of interpretation ].
Let anyone who has intelligence (penetration and insight enough) calculate the number of the beast, for it is a human number [ the number of a certain man ];
his number is 666.
Rev 18:3 AMP
3 For all nations have drunk the wine of her passionate unchastity, and the rulers and leaders of the earth have joined with her in committing fornication (idolatry), and the businessmen of the earth have become rich with the wealth of her excessive luxury and wantonness. [Jer 25:15,27.]
Rev 18:14-21 AMP
14 The ripe fruits and delicacies for which your soul longed have gone from you, and all your luxuries and dainties, your elegance and splendor are lost to you, never again to be recovered or experienced!
15 The dealers who handled these articles, who grew wealthy through their business with her, will stand a long way off, in terror of her doom and torment, weeping and grieving aloud, and saying,
16 Alas, alas for the great city that was robed in fine linen, in purple and scarlet, bedecked and glittering with gold, with precious stones, and with pearls! [Ezek 27:31,36.]
17 Because in one [single] hour all the vast wealth has been destroyed (wiped
out). And all ship captains and pilots, navigators and all who live by seafaring,
the crews and all who ply their trade on the sea, stood a long way off,
[Isa 23:14; Ezek 27:26-30.]
18 And exclaimed as they watched the smoke of her burning, What city
could be compared to the great city!
19 And they threw dust on their heads as they wept and grieved, exclaiming,
Woe and alas, for the great city, where all who had ships on the sea grew rich
[ through her extravagance ] from her great wealth ! In one single hour she
has been destroyed and has become a desert ! [ Ezek 27:30-34.]
20 Rejoice (celebrate) over her, O heaven! O saints (people of God) and
apostles and prophets, because God has executed vengeance for you
upon her! [Isa 44:23; Jer 51:48.]
21 Then a single powerful angel took up a boulder like a great millstone and flung
it into the sea, crying, With such violence shall Babylon the great city be hurled
down to destruction and shall never again be found. [Jer 51:63,64; Ezek 26:21.]