The Just World phenomenon is a trick of the mind, which we all fall victim to. It helps us to explain the world around us in a way that is more comfortable, pleasing, and just than it really is. It is an illusion that we rely upon to make life more conducive to our sense of right and wrong. I find this phenomenon particularly interesting in shaping the perspectives of believers.
Almost all of us have this sense of something more, something higher, something greater that exists within our being. It is an echo of that breath of life God breathed into us. It is a hint at the higher dimension of life we were designed from. But we also have the dangers of deception in our hearts and minds. There are tricks of the mind that that lead us to see things all around us that are not true.
Something inherent to the human heart cries out for a just world. The origins of this cry are true but the applications are often false.
In search of a just world, we frequently blind ourselves to realities all around us.
For a believer, we have to learn the balance between knowing our heavenly origin and destination but also navigating a fallen earthly system.
“Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes.” Ephesians 1:4
But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.
“Once you had no identity as a people; now you are God’s people.
Once you received no mercy; now you have received God’s mercy.
Dear friends, I warn you as “temporary residents and foreigners” to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against your very souls. Be careful to live properly among your unbelieving neighbors. Then even if they accuse you of doing wrong, they will see your honorable behavior, and they will give honor to God when he judges the world.
1 Peter 2:9-12
I mentioned several readings worth looking into today’s podcast devotional. Here are some links if you are interested in digging deeper.
- Mere Christianity (free copy of the digital version of the C.S. Lewis book)
- Just-World Phenomenon
- You might also enjoy this article I wrote about Reparations that looks at some of the stats and realities of systemic racism in America: Reparations Are A Good Idea – A White, Christian, Conservative’s Perspective.