“He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?”
In this verse from the Bible, God is answering a big question for us. “What Does God Want from us?” His answer comes in three parts.
How do you “do” justice? Well, let’s ask another question first: “What is justice?”
Justice has something to do with being just. That means knowing what is right and wrong. Micah is telling us that God is concerned that people are not doing what is right.
It’s important for us to know what has been going on in the first 5 chapters of Micah. In those chapters, Micah details the terrible sins of the people. The political leaders were stealing the fields and houses from their people, the religious leaders were robbing them blind and the people themselves had turned to false idols instead of the One True God.
In the midst of all these things, the people tried to make everything good by going to the Temple and performing rituals with empty hearts. They thought they could act however they wanted and then just make it all go away by their fake acts of religiosity!
That’s not how God works.
Justice! God wants justice in His land. He wants His people to act right ... to love each other ... to do the right things. God wants hearts that do justice and people who desire to please Him.
How does that impact you and I, today? God is saying that it doesn’t matter how often you go to church, read your Bible, pray your prayers and say the right stuff. If it hasn’t changed the way you act towards others, your religion is phony and useless. God is not honored by hypocrisy.
So, what does God want? He wants His people to do what is right. Not because they have to, but because they want to. He wants you to show His love to others by the way your heart has been changed by His love. That is justice. It is doing the right things.
“Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.”
Tomorrow: loving mercy.