Proverbs 24:23-25 (NLT)
23 Here are some further sayings of the wise: It is wrong to show favoritism when passing judgment. 24 A judge who says to the wicked, “You are innocent,” will be cursed by many people and denounced by the nations. 25 But it will go well for those who convict the guilty; rich blessings will be showered on them.
As people are required to use good judgment to follow the law, judges are also expected to use good and wise judgment in administering the law. They are not to be swayed unjustly by those in front of the court. Just as the church deals with the wicked, so too a judge must deal with the wicked. To excuse the wicked is like saying they are righteous and it will bring condemnation from those looking for justice.
A child in the third grade walks into the school lunch room with a lunch that was prepared at home. As they are unpacking the lunch on the table they notice a butter knife included in the lunch box. The child knows knives are not allowed at the school so they take the knife up to the teacher who immediately sends them to the principal. The principal calls the sheriff who handcuffs the child and escorts them to juvenile detention to await the arrival of their parents. This was a true story showing how rules can be made inflexible because there is a lack of wise judgment. Instead of being able to review the individual problem in a wise and discerning way an inflexible rule was set in place to handle all problems the same way. A child who may have brought a knife to school with the intent of harming someone gets the same punishment as a child who had a butter knife packed in their lunch box. Because there are hard and fast rules and no wisdom in judgment those with innocent motives receive the same punishment as those with evil and wicked motives. We all must be careful to elect those who are wise and live by God’s standards. We must pray understanding, grace and mercy are applied when called for. And we must pray laws do not become the judge of people, but instead serve as rules, which must be abided by. Pray for our leaders that they would have the wisdom to create fair rules and laws which convict the guilty, but allow room for fair judgment.