Thursday, March 5, 2015

Injustice - God's Responsibility, or Ours?

With the reLENT discipline I've been doing this Lent season, the word for March 5th was "injustice" and the verses given come from Isaiah, chapter 58, verses 6 and 7:

6 Is not this the fast that I choose:
    to loose the bonds of injustice,
    to undo the thongs of the yoke,
to let the oppressed go free,
    and to break every yoke?
7 Is it not to share your bread with the hungry,
    and bring the homeless poor into your house;
when you see the naked, to cover them,
    and not to hide yourself from your own kin?
 But I think it's important to back up a few verses...

3 “Why do we fast, but you do not see?
    Why humble ourselves, but you do not notice?”
Look, you serve your own interest on your fast day,
    and oppress all your workers.
4 Look, you fast only to quarrel and to fight
    and to strike with a wicked fist.
Such fasting as you do today
    will not make your voice heard on high.
5 Is such the fast that I choose,
    a day to humble oneself?
Is it to bow down the head like a bulrush,
    and to lie in sackcloth and ashes?
Will you call this a fast,
    a day acceptable to the Lord?
Here we have a people fasting and humbling themselves, and upset because they feel God has not taken notice of all they've done. Yet God points out the error of their fasting. Sure, they fast... and while they do, they are still oppressing their workers, abusing their slaves and each other. Sure, they hang their heads in humility and lie on sackcloth and ashes, yet still keep food from the truly poor and clothes from the naked. They are, essentially, being hypocrites during their fasting.

We see this often today. We see people within Christianity giving up things for Lent, and feigning humility. Yet they daily continue to provide and support injustice in the world. They know that once their fast is done, they'll go back to their jobs and nice clothes and cars and homes. They'll go back to ignoring the oppressed and the poor and needy. This isn't what God wants. He wants us all to take responsibility for the poor and oppressed. He wants us all to reach out and do something to help others. He wants us all to work together to stop injustice.

Instead of asking God "Why aren't you doing something to stop poverty, famine and injustice?" ask yourself, "What can I do to stop poverty, famine and injustice."

Disqus Shortname

Comments system