Where does injustice come from ?

inequalityI have been writing about some of the injustices I see in the world and aim to campaign to reduce it’s impact. Part of the answer is to have stronger laws and stronger law enforcement to eliminate them. Another part of the answer is to make people aware so that injustice becomes unacceptable. But what is the root cause of injustice? There is no avoiding the fact that we are dealing with human nature at the deepest level.

Legal exploitation

At the end of the day we can pass laws and ensure that nobody can get away with ignoring those laws, but people will then find legal ways of exploiting their fellow-man. In my last blog I wrote about slavery in Britain today. In the UK we have laws to protect employees, but employers use legal zero hours contracts which force people to be available constantly but with earnings limited to whatever work is available.

Although laws could protect people against the most blatant forms of injustice, it is impossible to eliminate all injustice just by passing laws. Slavery is illegal in every country of the world, and could be largely eliminated by stronger law enforcement but people will always find other ways of exploitation. Human nature needs to change!

Loving God, Ourselves and our Neighbour

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.”

The second is this: “Love your neighbour as yourself.” There is no commandment greater than these. (Mark 12:30-31 NIV)

We were made in the image of God (Genesis 1:27). One of the most precious gifts that God gave to us is that of free-will. This means that we can choose to exploit and abuse other people (our neighbour) or we can choose to love other people and seek their good. We cannot legislate on love: cannot make others love by passing laws. But loving others is only part of the equation.

God loves us so much that he sent Jesus to reconcile us back to God. By choosing to follow the life and the teachings of Jesus we can be re-united to our maker and this enables us to truly love God, ourselves and people we come into contact with.

I am not talking about being religious. Following religious practises does not necessarily mean that we automatically start loving others. But as we choose to allow God’s love to get through to us, and change us, and choose to take the things that Jesus said seriously, then we begin to see people differently. We won’t use others for our own convenience but will practice justice in our social involvement with the rest of the human race.

Hope for the future

We need to set the slaves free. We need to see justice in world trade. I don’t really want to just imprison those who exploit others. I want to see them change. Putting them in prison won’t change them. A change in the law only make exploiters look for alternatives.

Jesus taught us to pray:

Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. (Matthew 6:10 NIV)

I am looking for God’s kingdom to gradually increase in its extent, here, on this world. As this kingdom takes hold injustices will be swept away as people choose to follow the teachings of Jesus and be reconciled to God. Although I am very aware of man’s injustice to man, I am an optimist and believe in a better world to come.

Christine and I will be on holiday later on this week and the following week. So there will be a gap in blog articles unless I manage to produce one from Greece!

Author: George Dowdell

I was the founder of Karuna Action (formerly Kingscare) and was the director for 24 years. I have now handed control over to younger people but continue as an advisor and trustee. My passion is to see extreme poverty eliminated and to see justice for the powerless.

3 thoughts on “Where does injustice come from ?”

  1. George, I think we owe to ourselves, neighbors and society to call out in injustice whenever we can. I was pleased to see some Muslims call Boko Harem on the carpet for their vile misuse of religious zeal. I was pleased to see a Mormon Bishop in Utah note that his state needs to do something to help impoverished people get healthcare denied by not expanding Medicaid. But, I think it fall us on us average citizens more than anyone else to call it out. Great post, BTG


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