In an incredible change of development, Bill Cosby could get away with rape. Allegedly, over the course of the last 50 years, Cosby has drugged and raped over 50 women. But a recent story came out claiming that Bill Cosby admitted to using sedatives to drug women back in 2005, but was promised by the prosecutor that it would never be used against him in court, and there is an email to prove this agreement. It is very likely that his confession, as well as any evidence gathered as a result of that confession, will not be allowed in court. If this turns out to be true Bill Cosby could go free. If the allegations are true, I can’t help but wonder what those women would go through if he ends up getting away with it.
Dealing with injustice is one of the most difficult things for people to go through. This situation with Bill Cosby is only one example of injustice out of a multitude this week alone. In celebrating Martin Luther King Jr Day yesterday, we were reminded yet again about the injustice he faced and that he exposed the injustice millions faced through the evil of American slavery. Later this week hundreds of thousands will be invading the streets of Washington D.C. to participate in the March For Life and protest the Roe v. Wade decision. Millions of babies have since been killed and their murderers, instead of being locked up in jail for selfishly and callously murdering their babies, are not only free, but applauded for their decisions, and given a platform to encourage others to do so as well.
How do we deal with all of this? How do we think about injustice in the world? Here are six thoughts I need to remind myself with in order to deal with terrible injustice.
God sees everything
David, in 2 Samuel 11, after committing incredible evil, and trying to cover it all up, seems to get away with it, and yet the last verse of the chapter tells us not only that God saw everything but that he was not pleased. David obviously learns his lesson in Psalm 139:7-8 when he asks, “Where Can I flee from your presence?” he concludes that God is omnipresent. While God’s omnipresence is a terror to the wicked, it is an encouragement to the righteous. I’ve heard the word “integrity” defined as someone who is the same in private as he is in public, but I think it should be taken a step further, true integrity should be defined as the constant knowledge that you are never in private, you are always in the presence of One. God is always watching, and ultimately He is the only audience member that matters.
God will punish all evil
Proverbs 11:21 says, “Assuredly, the evil man will not go unpunished, But the descendants of the righteous will be delivered.” If Solomon’s wisdom isn’t enough, God himself says in Isaiah 13:11, “I will punish the world for its evil, the wicked for their sins. I will put an end to the arrogance of the haughty and will humble the pride of the ruthless.” While it’s hard to wait for God to bring justice, we must remember that not only will God punish all evil but he also knows the best timing for everything. And even if Cosby gets to enjoy his millions for another decade or longer, apart from repentance and trust in Christ, he will suffer eternally in Hell for his sin. God’s incredible and inimitable patience should not cause us to think that his wrath is not coming.
Life is short
When someone is suffering, the worst thing we can do is barge into their life with a sentence like, “suck it up, and quit being so earthly minded!” But one way I have been shepherded through injustice in my own life has been to consider eternity. We have to train our minds to think about heaven. It is incredible to sit down and think about eternity. We spend so much time worrying about this life, earthly comforts and decisions that will ultimately be meaningless 100 years from now. James 4:14 warns us that life is but a vapor. Likewise, Jesus, who always calls us to value heaven more than this life, reminds us in Matthew 6:28-34 that it is the pagans who worry about tomorrow. We instead should seek God’s kingdom and His righteousness first. Responding to injustice with an unmovable trust in God, is a symptom of a life lived with eyes fixed on Christ with a desire to please Him and be with Him above all else.
People are worse than you think
While no one deserves to be raped, tortured, taken apart limb by limb, or murdered by fellow human beings, it is important to remember that we all deserve worse from God Himself. There is no such thing as an innocent person. Paul reminds us in Romans 3:10-23 that “There is no one righteous”, “there is no one who seeks after God”, “their throat is an open grave”, “their feet are swift to shed blood”, culminating in the reminded that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”. The depravity of man is essential in the moment of injustice. We must remind ourselves that ultimately there is no such thing as an innocent person. Leaving the death of Jesus as the only pure form of injustice the world has ever seen.
We deserve Hell too
In the moment of obvious injustice, it is very tempting to get angry. It is also very easy to judge the evildoer. We love seeing the bad guy get what he deserves. Hollywood has made a fortune in giving the audience what they want, namely, the death of the bad guy. Usually, unless the director wants to go against the grain, it ends badly for the bad guy. In dealing with injustice we must remind ourselves that we too, if it were not for the power of the gospel, would be capable of the same if not much, much worse. Having a proper view of our own sin, and our guilt before God, is something that will help us understand and deal with people’s sin around us.
God uses injustice to sanctify the believer
James 1:2-4 says that we should, “consider it all joy when you face trials of many kinds (including injustice) because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” Romans 8:28 suggests that God works in all things (including injustice) to work for good in the lives of His children. And Joseph, despite having suffered terrible injustice, is an example of maturity when he says, “you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive.” A godly response to injustice always leads to a more sanctified life.
Evil surrounds us. I’m sure you’ve been affected by injustice in your life. We cannot allow Satan and the world to take away the joy we have in knowing the Lord. The temptation to complain is great, the inclination to lose hope is strong and the impulse to get angry and exact revenge can be powerful. But we must remember the word in Romans 12:17-21 where it says,
Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,”says the Lord. On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.