To what extent is justice a Biblical concept according to Lewis B. Smedes?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think that Smedes would claim that justice is a concept that owes much to what is in the Bible.  For Smedes, one of his premises is that the only way a society can operate in a just manner and pursue the ends of justice is with people that are just.  Smedes defines "just" individuals as ones who live in accordance to the Bible and to the tenets outlined in the sacred text.  To this extent, justice is a Biblical concept because the manner in which it can be achieves is through individuals who follow the tenets of what is "just" as is outlined in the Bible.  Smedes argues that the Bible is a source of what determines justice because so many figures in the Bible are concerned with the issue of justice.  The teachings of both Old and New Testaments are motivated by the issue of justice.  Jesus' teachings as well as the Prophets' words are animated by the condition of seeking justice.  Since the concept itself is so present in the Bible, Smedes argues that it is a Biblical concept and in studying the Bible and understanding its implications, one begins to better understand the nature of justice and how much it is a concept that is Biblical.  It is in this element that Smedes argues that a closer relationship between the individual and God is desired.  In this pursuit, one will better understand the nature of issues like Justice that are outlined by God's word in the Bible.