A Christian Science perspective: Even in the most unjust of circumstances, justice can be found.
People have to deal with some form of injustice every day. For instance, someone cut you off while you were driving to work this morning, or you were accused of doing something you didn’t do, or you discover someone you trust has been lying to you, or someone discriminates against you because of the amount of money you make or the color of your skin.
Opinions vary on what is just and what isn’t as well as on the remedy for obtaining justice. My concept of justice evolved drastically after a significant physical healing I had through spiritual means.
One day nearly 14 years ago, I found myself gravely ill (see Christian Science Sentinel, April 13, 2009). The illness was so sudden and the symptoms so aggressive, I was literally scared to death. I remember lying in bed going over my life looking for something, an act, a transgression – something I committed that would shed light on what was happening to me. It was like a film reel. As the images spun in my thought, I got a message that I know came from God, which said to me that searching my past in that way was absurd. That message assured me that God was with me and was speaking to me, and that He would continue to care for me. It was then that I elected to have the illness addressed through Christian Science.
For the next three months I read from the Bible and “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” by Mary Baker Eddy. I read to learn more about me, God’s creation, and my spiritual identity as a child of God. I began prayerfully protesting daily the legitimacy of this ailment. It didn’t come from God, so it had no authority over me, as one made in His image and likeness. It was my right to find healing from this ailment, and I did. When I was healed, my concept of justice changed.
Justice to me had always meant equality, decency, and fairness reflected in laws such as the civil rights act, the voting rights act, the right to a fair trial, etc. However, with this healing I discovered that justice is actually the result of God’s law, the law of divine Love, which blesses and heals. When I became clear that the ailment I was dealing with was not created by God or supported by His law of infinite good, I was healed.
The Bible shares countless examples of individuals and nations who through their reliance on God found just solutions to problems. Moses led the children of Israel out of bondage, enslavement, from Egypt. After Moses led the people through the Red Sea to land, to freedom, they began to rebel because they were hungry and thirsty. Although the Bible doesn’t record them using these words, I can hear them saying, “Where’s the justice in this?” But God provided for them with bread and meat and fertile lands, and continued to provide for them. When they relied on God to fulfill their needs, their eyes were open to what He was already supplying.
And how about Daniel, tossed into a den of lions for praying to his God? The Bible records Daniel as saying, after the king discovers him alive and untouched, “My God hath sent his angel, and hath shut the lions’ mouths, that they have not hurt me: forasmuch as before him innocency was found in me” (Daniel 6:22).
Daniel and Moses learned something about their innate goodness and its power which is of God. I believe they caught glimpses of their spirituality, which could never be marred or diminished, and they demonstrated this understanding of themselves in the most unjust of circumstances, and found deliverance.
Centuries later, Christ Jesus, who heightened humanity's understanding of God, was crucified for healing and teaching. He healed people from unjust "sentences" such as blindness, leprosy, dementia or insanity, palsy, adultery, lack. He taught his followers that the kingdom of heaven is within and that justice can always be found through faith in and an understanding of God, divine Love.
Science and Health states, “It is man’s moral right to annul an unjust sentence, a sentence never inflicted by divine authority” (p. 381). This sentence could be an illness, a hostile housing environment, racism, prejudice, abuse, or even violence. But no matter what it is, we have the right, power, and capability to annul it through God, and that, to me, is justice.