It’s the classic question that all of us have to answer. The wisest man to walk the earth , King Solomon, uttered these words and they still ring true thousands of years later.
“What has been will be again,
what has been done will be done again;
there is nothing new under the sun.” – Ecclesiastes 1:9
Injustice has been happening since the creation of the world. The first murder happened because of Jealousy( Cain & Abel) in Genesis 4. We see The first documented case of racism , discrimination & Gods judgement ( Moses, his Ethiopian wife , Miriam & Aaron) in Numbers 12. So Injustice is not new. It’s as ancient as the Bible.
How do you deal with Injustice? Do you speak if you have nothing to lose but keep silent when your own well being is at stake? Do you quietly pray but take no action? Maybe God would send a brave soul to speak up or do something but not you, right?
Let us look at 3 people and what they did when they saw injustice.
Exhibit A: Moses tells pharaoh to Let His people Go!
….“Look, the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we; 10 come, let us deal shrewdly with them, …11 Therefore they set taskmasters over them to afflict them with their burdens…. 12 But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were in dread of the children of Israel. 13 So the Egyptians made the children of Israel serve with rigor. 14 And they made their lives bitter with hard bondage—in mortar, in brick, and in all manner of service in the field. All their service in which they made them serve was with rigor.” – Exodus 1: 8-14( NKJV)
The Egyptians were afraid the growing foreigner population in Egypt, namely the Israelites. So they set out taskmasters over them to crush their spirits, mind & body through cruel and labor intensive work. They oppressed them and built their wealth on their backs. The Israelite looked unto God and God relented.
God tells Moses I am going to send you as my spokesman to stand before pharaoh(King & god of Egypt) and tell him to “Let my people go!”
Moses naturally felt unqualified, wanted to cop out but God had picked him. With the assurance that God will go with him, he took a step of faith and confronted pharaoh. After many plagues, miracles and debacles the Israelites are FREE!
Result: God stayed true to His word and Moses led over 1 Million slaves out of Egypt. Miracle you say? Miracle, indeed!
Exhibit B: Queen Esther Saves Her People by risking her life
The poor orphan, Esther, who was raised by her older cousin Mordecai was beautiful! One day King Xerxes summons his wife, but she refuses to come. Inebriated and under the influence the Kings Pride was hurt. He counseled his lawyers and her fate was sealed. She was to be made an example of and executed for disrespecting the king.
After a while loneliness got the best of the King and he started looking for a new wife. Who else but the godly, gracious and beautiful Esther? The search commenced throughout the kingdom, but there was no one like Esther.So, Esther becomes the Queen.
During Esther’s reign as Queen a plot was brewing to destroy the whole race of Jews. This came from someone high up in the Kingdom. But Esther was safe because didn’t tell anyone she was a Jew.
She faced two choices
1- She could go to the King uninvited and try to avert the plot. We know what happened to the last Queen who disrespected the King. What if the same thing happens to Esther? Bold but very risky move.
2- She is in the palace. She is the Queen and no one knows she is a Jew. She is safe. 1 Jew alive is better than no Jew alive, right? She will pray for them but what’s the point of trying to do the impossible? She should just mind her own business.
Result: After a stern warning from her guardian, Mordecai, Esther asks for prayer but does the right thing. With a meticulous plan the plot was averted, the culprit shamed, the Jews saved and her Cousin & Guardian Mordecai promoted.
Exhibit C: God punishes Miriam by leprosy for looking down on Moses’s Ethiopian Wife.
Moses was a Jew. His wife was not. His wife was Ethiopian. Ethiopians are dark skinned. Jews are not. When Moses married an Ethiopian, his siblings Aaron and Miriam, who were a priest and a prophetess respectively , spoke against Moses.
God didn’t like that. He summoned all three. With Miriam being the instigator, Aaron and Miriam thought since God has spoken to Miriam and Aaron , they felt they felt they were in a position to speak against Moses.
They must have said: “Who is he to think he can marry an Ethiopian?”
God told them, I have spoken to you through parables but I speak with my servant Moses face to face.
I can imagine God saying “How dare you speak against him? How dare you open your self-righteous,I-am-so-important-and-I-am-better-because-of-how-I-look-ignorant-mouth and speak against my Ethiopian daughter? She is also my beautiful daughter. Is your skin color the source of your pride Miriam? I’ll give you something to be proud about! You are going to be a leper(A chronic, curable infectious disease mainly causing skin lesions and nerve damage).
Result: “So the anger of the Lord was aroused against them, and He departed. 10 And when the cloud departed from above the tabernacle, suddenly Miriam became leprous, as white as snow. ” – Numbers 12:9-10
I think the evidence is clear. As the above exhibits indicate, God is just and he always does what is right. What would he have us do? Do the right thing!
It is often an inconvenience to speak up for the oppressed, the poor, the powerless, the mistreated, the not so well connected, the underprivileged and the marginalized of society.What would i do? I know what I would do. What would you do? I’ll let God’s word be the Judge.
“He who gives to the poor will not lack,
But he who hides his eyes will have many curses.” – Proverbs 28:27