Campfire Scripture #7

Campfire Scripture: Bible verses every week day followed by a short manful devotional. Goes great with sausages, potatoes and a billy tea.

Here you’ll find passages of scripture to inspire or teach the manly Christian man, or otherwise represent the hard truths that you’re just not likely to get elsewhere.

So roll out your swag, kick your boots off and enjoy.


Book Author and Date:

Proverbs chapter 21 was authored by Solomon, the third King of Israel, David’s son who was bestowed especially with extraordinary wisdom by the power of the Holy Spirit. Solomon Authored many other proverbs and collected and compiled still more from wise men that preceded him. Solomon authored his Proverbs during his reign as King of Israel from 971-931 B.C. before he was led away from the Lord by his many wives, so probably sometime during the earlier half of his reign.



Justice, Righteousness, Iniquity.



This short soundbite of Solomonic wisdom fits into a chapter about right living.


What I Reckon:

To describe justice as something deemed ‘joy’ for the righteous is really telling. As men we are inclined towards justice and fairness.


However, like anything, when our sense of justice is marred by sin we can take it to mean anything we like. Biblical justice refers to God’s righteous judgement of the wicked of heart. This is best demonstrated in the compassion Jesus Christ showed for the adulteress (John 8:1-11), versus the pharisees perceived ‘justice’ which was nothing more than their hard hearted, hypocritical, application of the law (not to mention their deliberate efforts to trap Jesus so that they might accuse him). They had no mercy for the repentant sinner.


Compassion, contrasted with justice is typically viewed as a more feminine virtue.


Yet John 8:1-11 demonstrates a perfect example of where God’s justice and compassion intersect. This is important for men (and ladies) to understand, because we tend to think of ‘justice’ and ‘compassion’ as incompatible. Whereas Jesus showed us in the example of the adulteress that justice and compassion are actually two sides of the same coin. The pharisee’s were not attempting to administer justice, Christ was.


As the proverb demonstrates the contrast for justice is between the righteous and the wicked, not between the compassionate and the unmerciful. The Lord judges our true intentions, and of course he knows them perfectly. Compassion does not forgo justice, because that would imply that the guilty will not be punished. However, the Bible makes it clear that those who call on Christ and repent are not guilty, they are forgiven. Compassion is demonstrated by the free offer of forgiveness.


This is why (as the proverb states) there is such joy in forgiveness, because we are made righteous by Christ’s blood; and why justice is terror to the workers of iniquity, because they rejected Christ’s offer and chose judgement.


Did you seriously read the whole thing? You're amazing!

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All Campfire Scripture passages are taken from the New American Standard Bible, unless otherwise stated.


John MacArthur, 2006, The MacArthur Study Bible,  New American Standard Bible (1995 edition).