Sunday, 6 September 2015

Restorative Justice Isaiah 35:6



“Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompence; he will come and save you. Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then shall the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing: for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert.”
Isaiah 35:4-6

The lame will leap, the mute will sing, the blind will see and the dry places will be give water and bloom.  In all of these pictures the outcome is a restored state.  Restored to what society then and now would call is a more productive, valued a more perfect state. 

There is another similarity in the before states of being as each exists on the fringes of society.  When this scripture was written to be blind, mute or deaf meant that you would live in poverty as an outcast, always indebted to others for your existence.  And the desert was a place that you wandered in, a place of hardship, struggle and death.

I believe the message we are being given in this scripture is one of restorative justice.  That we are not to seek punishment, and compensation rather we are to seek restorative justice.  That it is our responsibility as Christians to ensure that when injustice happens that we seek to restore both the victim and offender to a position of health and well being within the community. 

This is easier said than done and yet this is the path of love that Christ has set us on.

Grandma Snyder

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