ODJ: justice and snacks

July 21, 2015 

READ: Psalm 99:1-5 

Mighty King, lover of justice, you have established fairness. You have acted with justice and righteousness throughout Israel (v.4).

They say that justice is blind, but recent research suggests that justice likes to snack as well! In 2010 a team of researchers tracked the rulings of eight judges during 1,100 parole-board hearings over 10 months. Nearly 65 percent of the prisoners were granted parole during hearings held right after the judges had eaten breakfast. Over the next few hours, the chances of getting a favourable parole hearing plummeted. But the prisoners’ chances of parole increased to 65 percent again after the judges’ mid-morning snack or lunch.

Let’s face it; human justice is flawed. So it’s good to know that the God of the universe doesn’t base His rulings on having had mid-morning snacks or lunch.

The psalmist called for all people to praise God’s awesome and great name, for He’s the Creator of the universe—the One exalted above the nations (Psalm 99:3). They were to praise His name because He is Lord and King and is sovereign in His rule over the world. But not only were they to praise Him because of His sovereign ways, but also because He is righteous and just in His judgement of humanity.

The Lord loves justice, has established fairness, is perfectly righteous and is the source of impartial and unbiased judgements (vv.4-5). No matter the time of day, God is wholly absorbed with what’s right.

Through Jesus, we’re recipients of God’s righteousness. No matter the time of day, we can live out His just and merciful ways by His power. May we seek His strength and courage to defend the weak, vindicate those who have no human champions and be wholly absorbed with doing what’s right in our world where justice is flawed. Justice received is justice shared. No snack required.

——Marvin Williams

365-day-plan: Matthew 15:32–16:12

Read Matthew 25:34-36 and James 2:17 to see the marks of someone who is just. 
Besides living in a fallen world, what are some other reasons why human justice is flawed? What are some specific ways you can think, speak and behave justly this week?