8 He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,[a]
and to walk humbly with your God?
- Justice is core to living by faith
- Justice is consistent with living by faith
What was the last thing you were really excited about?
1. On the final day of Moses’ life, he composed a song as a witness against the waywardness of the Israelites [Deuteronomy 32:1-43]. Verses 3-4 extol God’s character. How does this description of God impact our Christian understanding of justice issues? Consult also Genesis 18:25; Psalm 99:4; and Jeremiah 9:23-24.
2. Why do you think the wise sage of Proverbs exalted showing justice above showy religious performance [Proverbs 21:3]? What would this look like in our current cultural context [cf. Deuteronomy 16:18-20; Isaiah 56:1; and Mark 12:32-33]?
3. Isaiah confronted his people with the hypocrisy of practicing religious rituals without treating others justly [Isaiah 1:10-15]. He then called for repentance and righteous living. Where could believers put into practice God’s expectations listed in Isaiah 1:16-17 [cf. Psalm 82:2-4; Jeremiah 22:3; and James 1:27]?
4. Micah 6:6-7 posed a worshiper’s question about what religious activities would satisfy God. What was the prophet’s response in verse 8? How are we to approach people, and how are we to approach God? Consider also 1 Samuel 15:22-23; Psalm 51:16-17; and Zechariah 7:8-10.
5. Jesus’ half-brother, James, exposed the prejudicial attitudes of the people of his day [James 2:1-13]. How is this inequitable scene repeated today, and how should believers address it [cf. Leviticus 19:15-16; Proverbs 14:31; and Matthew 7:1-5]?
6. The sins of injustice, inequality, and prejudice all stem from the hatred of others. How do Christians counter these social evils according to 1 John 2:9-11; 3:10-18; and 4:20-21?
7. What did you find helpful or challenging about this Sunday’s message?
“The incentive to peacemaking is love, but it degenerates into appeasement whenever justice is ignored. To forgive and to ask for forgiveness are both costly exercises. All authentic Christian peacemaking exhibits the love and justice - and so the pain - of the cross.” (John Stott)