Lent 2018: See the Lord's Salvation: Day 18

Honesty and Justice

by

Today's Text: Exodus 22:1-31, Exodus 23:1-19, Proverbs 31:8-9, 1 Corinthians 10:24

Scripture Reading: Exodus 22:1-31, Exodus 23:1-19, Proverbs 31:8-9, 1 Corinthians 10:24

I have learned a lot about honesty and justice from having a roommate. First of all, it doesn’t matter what city you live in, how many people you live with, or the closeness of your friendship, sharing a bathroom is not fun. One of the largest offenses you can make as a roommate is stealing all the hot water from the shower, closely followed by leaving your wet laundry in the washing machine, your dirty dishes in the sink, or refusing to take out the trash.

Trying to live peacefully in a house full of sleep walkers, gum chewers, and late-into-the-night phone talkers gives you a fresh taste of the sinful (and sometimes gross) nature of humanity. The best thing you can do to navigate the awkwardness of shared living is to establish some house rules. For example, my current roommate’s responsibilities include mice and anything furry, while my expertise includes bugs and anything slimy. If we use up the last roll of paper towels or eat the last piece of chocolate, we replace them. The list can go on and on, but the longer it gets, it becomes less about individual actions, and more about the type of home we want to live in.

The same is true in Exodus 22 and 23, as we find one statement after another regarding things the people of God should or shouldn’t do, and when or how they should do them. It’s a long list, but those two whole chapters can be summed up in four words: “Be my holy people” (Exodus 22:31).

You see, issues like honesty and justice are tough to discern on their own, much less when combined with a temporary world that guarantees brokenness and imperfection. Yet, God teaches us that honesty and justice are foundational to the shoring up of our earthly homes.

When you read these two chapters, consider that each sentence is revealing something about God’s heart for His people. He has already paid our debt, given us a listening ear, granted us forgiveness, and fully satisfied our hearts. God’s heart is for restoration and redemption, and the vehicles He uses are honesty and justice.

Speak up for those who have no voice,
for the justice of all who are dispossessed
Speak up, judge righteously,
and defend the cause of the oppressed and needy.
—Proverbs 31:8-9

Thank the Lord, for He is honest and just. Amen.

SRT-Lent2018-Instagram-Day18

  • Rene' Bancroft

    The lists in Exodus were long but necessary. I think our “list” today, in light of the resurrection is short but just as powerful ~ Be obedient to the Lord. In all things, look to the Lord fir guidance & He will never steer us in the wrong direction ~ we take the wrong path when we are disobedient. Great reminders!!

  • I have been quietly following with the Lent study & am so incredibly confused by the additional laws. I’m especially confused about the laws regarding slavery. To me, those do not seem divinely inspired at all. They seem like they were created by man to purposefully keep slaves (especially female slaves) in submission. I am surprised that these laws seem like they are glossed over. Shouldn’t we be questioning and discussing laws like that in far more depth?

    • Emily Bennett

      I think the slavery that is talked about here is different than what we think. If anything, the slaves were more like indentured servants and could go free after 7 years of service :) it’s said in some of the previous Bible passages in this study, but I forget which one!

    • Skye

      Christi many people also atruggled with this; it might be helpful to go to the previous day’s comments, day 17, I think (and commentary from Hereadstruth as well as srt).

  • Trisha Thomas

    Such a good word. Thank you.

  • Brittany Couch

    Honest and Just. Be that whom God has called. P31

  • Jo Gistand

    Wow! Thanks for that insight! In Christ alone, through faith alone…not what my hands of done. The symbolism!!❤️

  • Denise Powers Fabian

    As a social worker in palliative care…this verse will now be posted on my desk at work: Speak up for those who have no voice,
    for the justice of all who are dispossessed
    Speak up, judge righteously,
    and defend the cause of the oppressed and needy.
    —Proverbs 31:8-9

  • Amy Bilotta

    I try to be intentional about reading up on the cultural context of Bible passages like these when I can because it sheds so much light on some of the rules that often for us seem nonsensical. I looked up v. 23:19 (the part about not cooking a goat in its mother’s milk) and apparently there was a pagan ritual at the time where this was done as a fertility ritual for the land (they sprinkled the fields with the broth or something like that) and so then this verse was God telling them not to engage in this tradition. He was leading them to a promised land that didn’t need to be sprinkled with goats milk to produce food for them – it would flourish instead because of those Sabbath rests!

  • I love how the meaning of the law and the ennumeration of the “do’s and don’ts” change and become essential to living honestly and justily when reading them through God’s eyes. Thank you for this new perspective!

  • Jessica McCreary

    ❤️❤️❤️

  • Rachel C Qualls

    I am personally struggling with all things roommate right now and this really helped my perspective. I hate to be the one always taking trash out, changing toilet paper rolls, cleaning dishes and sometimes being the only one to buy house necessities, but I should do it out of showing love and not being OCD!

  • Audrey Gonzalez

    I really loved how I saw the character of God through this reading. He is compassionate, loving, just, forgiving, merciful, orderly. And so much more!

  • Katie Morrison

    Prayers please, I am confronting an issue at work and need discernment, courage and strength as honesty and judgement come to light. Thank you! To God be the glory

  • Peony Noirr

    I am so grateful to have separated myself from evil people and have surrounded myself with good, God fearing people who support and encourage my faith. ❤️

  • I don’t know about you but his just turned my heart in a direction this morning. Symbolically speaking it makes me realize what kind of house I want to live in—- physically, emotionally and spiritually. I want to be His Holy People—- ideally. But, realistically HE makes us Holy, we are unable. A huge vision of grace for sure.

  • Monica Davis

    God is compassionate

  • This is so timely as we have lots of court dates and big decisions being made for our foster son right now. He has been with us so long and I’m weary of fighting for truth. Thank you for that scripture reminder!

    • hali

      hi, my friend! praying for this season. God is faithful—hold onto that!

    • She Reads Truth

      Thank you for sharing this Juliet. We’re praying for you and your family during this time! -Margot, The SRT Team

    • Tricia

      Juliet, I will be praying for you. We have fostered 10 kids and adopted 3 of them. I remember all the ups and down and the heavy heart. The Lord is faithful

  • As I was reading today’s scriptures from Exodus, I wrote down some of the things that God talked about here: exploitation, mistreatment, gossip, bribery, helping your enemies, false accusations, and oppression of the poor, widows, orphans and “aliens”. Then in the reading from Proverbs, we are told to “speak up” for those with no voice, the oppressed and the needy. We are called to “be holy” and here, in today’s readings, we are given very specific ways in how to do that. Honesty and justice for all are foundational for a holy life.

  • Sabrina Michelle

    ❤️❤️❤️

  • GramsieSue

    Honesty. Justice. Verse 31 of chapter 22 begins, “Be my holy people.” The building block on which we should live our lives. How many times to I begin with, “How do I do this in a holy way?” Ummm…do I have to answer that? Oh yeah, I’m the queen of impulsive actions! And then have to ask for forgiveness. Sigh
    Be my holy people. I need to let that guide me.

    • Shannon

      Such a challenge! Thanks for these words. I’m going to try to apply this in my day today.

  • It is amazing reading the details in all of these rules and then tying it in with yesterday and realizing that all of these could be summed up neatly into Love God with all your heart and your neighbor as yourself. But God knew them and how much trouble they would have actually loving their neighbors as themselves and knowing what that looked like. So he spelled out all of these scenarios for their benefit. He is so merciful and patient with us.

  • Just FYI – the Lord has layed on my heart to pray for a Caroline . . which I assume there are many in this community! Just know that I am praying for you and God loves you fiercely! <3

  • Erin Vallez

    As a Christian it is an ongoing battle in this temporary world to constantly stand up and be convicted within a group of people who’s worldly views are matched with, well, the world, and not with Christianity. I am constantly reminded and redirected to my calling to the Lord and to the inheritance of eternity. If I, a woman in her 40’s struggles with this, I can’t imagine what my children will face as they grow into their teens. I stand today declaring the Lords love over all those who are young and influenced with society views and ask the Lord to protect their hearts and to stand before them to fight their battles and remind them of His love for them. In Jesus name, Amen.

  • Caroline Smith

    Amen for that young man! I love a youngster with knowledge beyond his years!

  • Carole Cannon

    I applaud that young man! And who is raising him!

  • Kelly Chataine

    Do the right thing, honor God. Treat others well, glorify God.

    Husband update ~ My husband continues therapy and it is going well. He has a long way to go. His eyes are messed up from his fall, they don’t stay on a target but rather they bounce which lends to the balance problems and dizziness. My FMLA has run out yet I remain at home, so finances are a concern. Last night, I checked his insurance, which has been good all along, and it had the word “Terminated.” I will look into that situation, today.

    Please pray!

    • Churchmouse

      Praying that Roger continues a steady recovery, especially his vision. I pray that all of your financial needs are met and that the insurance issue is resolved favorably for you. And above all I pray that you continue to walk in faith and trust that God loves you and will provide. Please keep posting so that I can continue to pray specifically for you.

    • Diane

      Praying for you.

    • GramsieSue

      Praying for you and Roger Kelly. ❤️

    • Alexis

      Praying for you and Roger, Kelly, that God will supply all of your needs and give you peace in this tough time.

    • She Reads Truth

      We’re continuing to pray for you and your husband! Thanks for the update Kelly. -Margot, The SRT Team

    • Tina

      Praying Kelly. God be with you and yours, in provision where needed, healing to your husbands body.. and a peace the surpasses all understanding on your heart.
      Sending love and hugs wrapped in prayers.. xxxxx

    • Victoria Velez

      May God put his loving, healing hands on your husband and may he bless you with the necessities needed to take care of him and yourself. God bless you

  • Churchmouse

    Today’s reading reminds me of the book “All I really need to know I learned in kindergarten” by Robert Fulghum. You might want to Google it. Sometimes the little things that can make a big impact are dismissed or overlooked or minimized. We want to do great things but God looks first for our faithfulness in the small things. Be kind. Treat others fairly. Go the extra mile. Don’t do it for acclaim-do it because it’s the right thing to do. Little things can make my world a better place. Who knows its ripple effect? God does – which is exactly why He reminds us to do them. Let’s pay God’s grace forward today with an anonymous random act of kindness. Let’s be a blessing through a small thing. Look for an opportunity and take advantage of it. God Himself will put it there. Thank Him. Let the ripples go out.

  • Exodus 22:9 talks about a breach of trust when borrowing something – a cloak, sheep, ox, etc. God says the guilty should pay double. This made me think of Matthew 5:40-42 when Jesus says “if anyone would sue you and take your tunic, give him your coat as well.” In other words, when you are in the right, instead of demanding your right, give even more to the offender. How glorious, because that is Jesus himself, who absorbs our wrong and gives us his righteousness and blessings instead!! We have so much in Christ that can never be taken away!

  • Kaitlyn Weathers

    God uses honesty and justice to bring about restoration and redemption. What a great reminder this morning! God’s laws reveal His character.

  • Reading the passage today made me think about all of the disputes that the Israelites had among themselves and how initially they brought them all to Moses to solve. Can you imagine the line? it makes me tired just thinking about it. Poor Moses had taken that all upon himself. How wonderful that God sent Jethro to tell him that was not good. Sometimes I think that we take way too much upon ourselves and need a Jethro to come along and say it isn’t good.

    These rules that God set up for them make such sense. They had lived on bondage and now needed to learn how to live together in less than ideal circumstances. My husband goes into companies where there is discord and leads workshops. The first thing he does is have them make a list of “rules” that everyone agrees to. Things like respect, listening, being kind usually top the list. It seems to me that we still need these rules from God to get along together.

    At the top of my list would be to speak up for those who have no voice and defend the cause of the oppressed and needy.

  • This makes me smile because not 12 hrs ago I was writing about my nephew Raziel, who, when he was 8, stood up to his teacher who was being unkind to a fellow student… Once he had told her she was being unjust, he then proceeded to tell her if she carried on he would go to the head… he did… he sat outside her office waiting to be seen and heard..
    Yes, he got into trouble.. but he stood up for the classmate…

    I think these days… fear has a big part to play in our actions ‘re ‘doing what is right.. oh to have a heart of a young person still free from inhibition and believing without fear…

    Lord God Almighty help me, guide me, direct me in the way I should go, so I can be the person you have created me to be in your likeness…
    Thank you Lord, for your leading… in the most mighty and wonderful name of Jesus, I pray…
    Amen.

    Blessings abundant this cold and blizzardy day… keep warm in the Fathers love…xxx

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