Why am I writing about OJ Simpson? Because he is in the news again.
I do. Because I am profoundly interested in justice and the ramification of injustice in our society. And I believe the American culture shapes our views of justice–some of them are correct, almost innate, and others are incorrect–the result of a society that does not honor God or His plumbline for living.
I joined thousands of Americans who sat glued to our tvs years ago during the trial of OJ Simpson. (If for some reason you don’t know about the bizarre life of Simpson, read here.) I found the whole process of justice and the debacle of the media coverage riveting and grievous at the same time.
Wayne and I were on vacation in New England when we heard the
not so amazing news that OJ had been acquitted.
I pulled out a pen and wrote this poem in my journal on the banks of a river in New Hampshire, trying to deal with this overwhelming sense of injustice.
Justice twisted herself
Now she wears
She weighed a ton when wrong,
and a feather when right.
Seeing eyes blind tipped the scales.
For 220 years, injustice
gushed dark in dim American alleys,
trickled on her highways.
Lightly, America convicted
the dark innocent.
She raped and stole
and scourged the differences
for the luxury of eating alone
and sitting alone
and drinking alone.
But she remained uncontaminated, unmixed
batterers of a bruised jury bought by vengeance.
The people, who shall overcome,
evened the score
the day O.J. walked.
Later, the Ron Goldman family brought a wrongful death suit against Simpson and won millions of dollars. With that legal win, it looked like some semblance of justice would be served. OJ defiantly vowed never to pay them a penny, and he has kept his word.
Still later, the public became outraged when OJ revealed his pending book, “If I did It: Confessions of a Killer.” The book deal shut down for a time. Then the Ron Goldman family bought the rights to the book. Again the public became outraged and prophesied the book would never sell.
Now that OJ is in the public eye again, pending charges of theft and kidknapping. The book sales have skyrocketed. The Goldmans are not making that much money on the book, but it helps settle the score for them in some small way, because at least OJ is not profiting on the book.
Nothing can bring Ron Goldman or Nicole Brown back, but the right to seek justice is righteous and as ancient as man. It is as primal as hunger or thirst.
God is just and true and wants to execute justice on behalf of humankind, but we must cry out for it! We do not receive it, because we do not plead with God for it. Isaiah 58:12-17:
12 That’s because we’ve done so many things he considers wrong.
Our sins prove that we are guilty.
The wrong things we’ve done are always troubling us.
We admit that we have sinned.
13 We’ve refused to obey the Lord.
We’ve made evil plans against him.
We’ve turned our backs on our God.
We’ve stirred up trouble and refused to follow him.
We’ve told lies that came from our own minds.
14 So people stop others from doing what is fair.
They keep them from doing what is right.
No one tells the truth in court anymore.
No one is honest there.
15 In fact, truth can’t be found anywhere.
Those who refuse to do evil are attacked.
The Lord sees that people aren’t treating others fairly.
That makes him unhappy.
16 He sees that there is no one who helps his people.
He is shocked that no one stands up for them.
So he will use his own powerful arm to save them.
He has the strength to do it because he is holy.
17 He will put the armor of holiness on his chest.
He’ll put the helmet of salvation on his head.
He’ll pay people back for the wrong things they do.
He’ll wrap himself in anger as if it were a coat.
Almost everyday, I literally cry out to God in my private prayers for Him to right the injustices that have occurred in my own life and the lives of others.
“Vengeance is mine” is what God says. I believe He said that because human fury could not contain the vengeance of God against those that perpetrate evil and injustice. The key is pleading for Him to move, and then waiting in good faith that He will.
The world is filled with injustice, and God is blamed for much of it. My worldview rejects that attitude. I believe God and I are not adversaries in this fallen world. He alone can even the score, in His way and own time.
Delayed justice is not injustice.