Do Justice


She calls out to the man on the street
sir, can you help me?
It’s cold and I’ve nowhere to sleep,
Is there somewhere you can tell me?

He walks on, doesn’t look back,
He pretends he can’t hear her,
Starts to whistle as he crosses the street,
Seems embarrassed to be there.

Oh, think twice, cuz it’s another day for
You and me in paradise.
Oh, think twice, it’s just another day for you,
You and me in paradise.

            --Phil Collins, “Another Day in Paradise”


It really is, you know.  You and I are living in paradise.   It may not always feel that way.  Financial stressors can be intense; debt can be hard to avoid; there always seems to be another unforeseen expense around the corner.  In spite of all that we have, we still worry about how much will be left at the end of the month.  This congregation has always had members who struggle financially.  Its median income certainly isn’t at the top of any of the churches I’ve been a part of.  And yet, globally speaking, most of us are doing very, very well.  As tough as things may seem for you, you are one of the richest people in the world.


Wanna find out just how rich you are? When you get a chance, go to and enter your annual income in US dollars.  If you make $50K or more, you are wealthier than 99% of the population.  If you make $25K or more, you’re wealthier than 90% of the world’s population.  There might be some margin of error there, but whatever it is, well, marginal.  It might be hard for us to see, because most of us are surrounded by people of similar means.  But the fact is, not many of us will ever have to worry about basics like food, water or shelter.


This Sunday, we’re going to look at a passage that wants us to keep all of this in mind.  God has communicated his expectations to us: we are to “act justly.”  What we’ll find is that it means more than just giving money; it’s more about an attitude that we have toward all people regardless of whatever numbers might appear in their bank accounts.