Justice is a
concept that has been known throughout all nations, cultures, and ages. Social
justice such a politically charged concept that it can really be separated from
its context in the modern age. It is the basis for every functional government
and legal system and without it, society crumbles. Human beings have an innate
sense of justice embedded in their souls. There is such a sense of completion
and fulfilment when justice is served, and an empty unrest when there is
injustice. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines justice as: the maintenance
or administration of what is just especially by the impartial adjustment of
conflicting claims or assignments. The Oxford Dictionary defines justice as: a
concern for justice, peace, and genuine respect for other people. Not
everyone’s ideas of what is good and evil will always agree, of course, but
commending their idea of right and condemning their idea of wrong. The question
is, what is justice and how is it manifested? It requires that a person’s
actions are repaid impartially; Upright deeds are rewarded while wrongful
conduct is punished.

            Initially,
rewarding someone for his or her reputable actions is not thought of when
considering bringing someone to justice. When someone is not given some sort of
reward for an honorable deed, however, it is evident and often outraging. For
instance, a well-meaning bystander helps a choking person by giving them the
Heimlich maneuver. In some cases, a rib has been broken in the process of
trying to save the person’s life. After recovering, the person who tried to
help was sued for breaking the other party’s rib. That is a very dishonorable
thing to do, and does not give justice to the person who was doing the right
thing. Good Samaritan laws have been created to provide legal protection for
those who have been unjustly accused of harmful actions while assisting others
in emergency situations. This law protects citizens and gives impartial
fairness to the individuals who are in danger of being punished for doing noble
acts. Another example is when someone does a benevolent, thoughtful deed for
you. By being grateful to that person and maybe even doing a kind deed in
return, you have given that person recompense for their good-hearted deed. This
is one way that justice manifests itself in an unusual manner and often
overlooked way.   

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            To continue, another
way this virtue manifests itself, this time in a more well-known way is when a
person who has done something wrong, morally and legally, is punished. In most
people’s eyes there is no other way to act than to punish that person for what
they have done. If they are not made to pay for their crimes, there is an
outcry from our souls, an unrest that cannot be cured except through response.

For instance, a drunken driver hits and kills a young couple, while walking
away from the accident virtually unharmed. The family and friends of that
couple would not be at rest until the drunk individual was placed behind bars
and never allowed to drive again. Justice is so ingrained in every person that
it is impossible to ignore the feelings that arise in you. A child must be sure
that he gets the same amount of goldfish as his brother, and if he feels he has
not, and senses injustice, he will loudly proclaim, “That is not fair!” His
sense of justice is telling him that something is wrong. Likewise, a
prosecuting attorney will fight with vehemence against a guilty party, making
sure justice is served to the defended. For the wrong doings, there must be
repercussions, as justice demands.

            Justice has been important
since the beginning of time. Another example of this is when God delivered
Israel out of the hands of the Egyptians. It was because the Israelites at the
time were slaves to the Egyptians and were treated very poorly. The Egyptians
became even harsher when they saw that the Israelites were reproducing at a
faster rate than the Egyptians were. The Egyptians became frightened that the
Israelites would eventually outnumber the Egyptians so much so, that they could
easily overpower the Egyptians. To try to combat this fear, they decided to
inforce nearly un-reachable labor standards on the Israelites. The Lord saw his
people suffering and elected a leader to restore Israel and bring them out from
their suffering. The Lord said to Moses at the burning bush in Exodus 3:7, “I
have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt I have heard them crying out
because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering.”  The Lord then sends Moses to deliver Israel,
and to help ensure justice to his people. God delivers Israel out of this land
of Egypt and in to a new and promised land.

Finally, God
administered justice to those who have been wronged. Scripture has numerous verses
that teaches us about what justice means and how to be just while here on
earth. Proverbs 21:15 says, “When justice is done, it brings joy to the righteous
but terror to evildoers.” Again, we see that justice can bring peace and
stability to those who choose to do what is good and can bring chaos and
punishment to those who decide to commit unlawful crimes against people who are
innocent. Again in Proverbs 29:2 it says, “When the righteous rule the people
rejoice; when the wicked rule the people groan.” Righteousness and justice are
very closely linked. When someone in power shows justice to wrong doers and
then rewards the man, women or even children who chooses to do what is right,
it brings justice. When the wicked rule and the man and women who have done no
wrong are taken advantage of and the unjust dictator or ruler escape punishment
for their actions, people quickly become distraught with the feeling of
injustice towards them and their families. Bitterness can take root in the
hearts of those who have been wronged. Bitterness and anger leads to a world of
hate and hostility. People quickly become succumbed by their own need to have
repercussions in order to help ensure that a society stays healthy and
functions properly. Without justice, the country or society becomes a place that
most would find too difficult to cope with and changes would have to be
enforced.

 Justice is such a crucial part of society and without
it people suffer. The very word justice is important to everyone and to all
people groups across the world. So much so, that people are willing to leave
their own country and venture outside of their homeland to find a place that
has this wonderful virtue. When we have justice, people become of equal value
to the next person and this prevents people from being able to commit serious
and dangerous crimes without the consequences of punishment. Justice is a
valuable virtue that benefits all of society and when there is an absence of
justice, many people suffer. We need justice for a lot of reasons and it is
something that is seemingly becoming less and less used throughout the world. Without
justice, our world would be an impossible place to live. Justice is impartial,
giving to each the fruit of its actions, and it is our job to make sure justice
is dealt out, without prejudice, to all those who need it. People yearn for the
treatment of equity by others in our homes, workplace, business negotiations,
etc. As we saw, honor and integrity are also part of justice, things that are
no less crucial in helping everything run smoothly. If we have and show honor
and integrity towards each other we begin to start to showing justice to one
another by doing what is right. Justice is a wonderful virtue and one that has
been around since the beginning of time and will be here to the end. Amos 5:24
says, “But let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing
stream!”