Scripture declares that “evil men do not understand justice, but those who seek the Lord understand it completely” (Prob. 28:5, ESV).
But even though they do not understand justice, evil men talk about it incessantly. Even though they do not comprehend what they are talking about, they appeal to it constantly. Because we are lost in our sins, we think that justice is our friend, when justice, biblically conceived, is our mortal enemy. Justice will deliver a poor man from his oppressor, but justice will deliver no man from his own wretched sinfulness.
This proverb says that those who seek the Lord understand it completely. This is the case because those who seek the Lord are only able to do so through the blood of Christ, which was shed under the justice of God. God was executing justice when Christ died, but He was doing so in a way that made it possible for justice and mercy to meet, and to kiss.
Those who seek the Lord, those who have justified, can look at justice without flinching. We can look at the law of God concerning what is just and what is not without distorting everything for the sake of our own peace of mind. And because we are freed from all condemnation, justice becomes a subject we can give ourselves to without fear of twisting it.
And this is why, when the people of God look at what the world is doing when it talks about justice—particularly social justice—we can see what is really in play. We see envy, settling scores, resentments, ambition, hatreds, and more. If we have been instructed rightly, we will come to understand that real knowledge of culture and politics is not possible without a clear understanding of the substitutionary atonement of Christ. It is there, and only there, that sinners can comprehend justice without being destroyed. And when we understand it, we may minister it.