Glad to come your way again. Today, we will conclude on this subject by looking at the last piece of advice to Solomon by his mother on manhood.
Over the past three issues, we looked at
1. Guarding against womanizing.
2 Guarding against alcoholism.
3. Speaking up on behalf of the defenseless.
Solomon’s mother was more particular about the core of her son’s being before he becomes king, rather than just becoming a good leader. Sometimes you can become good at what you do, and bad at who you are. There is a world of difference between the two.
Let us look at the maternal instruction to Solomon in this passage.
“Open your mouth, judge righteously, And plead the cause of the poor and needy.” Proverbs 31:9
The last piece of advice was on righteous judgement, which means judging justly. One’s leadership becomes solid when the ingredient of justice is found. You see, you don’t judge righteously because you are a leader. You judge righteously because you are a man of justice first. Who you are determines what you will bring to the table.
How does one become a man of justice or just?
“I will praise You with uprightness of heart, When I learn Your righteous judgments.” Psalms 119:7
One of the ways is, to read the Bible. The Bible here is referred to as “righteous judgments”. We can see from this Bible verse that the writer had an upright heart because of what he read. The Bible gives you an outlook in life which affects how you perceive things. One of the things you will discover in the Bible is, how just God is. This book doesn’t just inform, but transforms how we think. One of the ideals you will learn is to be nonpartisan.
With that said, let us look at some features of justice.
1. Correct measurements- this word righteous was used in relation with honest scales and weights in the Hebrew context. You were said to be righteous when you charge correctly without adjusting the scales. Scales back then were used in determining a lot: from an ephah of flour to a hin of oil. In today’s context, being just means you come clean in your business dealings with people concerning measurements or anything that has to do with metrics. You don’t exaggerate or overstretch the truth. Let your “3 feet” TRULY be “3 feet”.
2. Ethically right– righteousness had to do with rightness, which promoted a right way of doing things or having ethics in general. Ethics are commonly known as a moral code. You do things right because they are right. Ethics are born out of conviction, not convenience. People who have this sense and duty of doing things right listen to their conscience. Our conscience serves as a moral compass but the more we forsake it, it ends up becoming a dead one. It is just like not using a muscle which later atrophies. For example, what causes one to receive bribes; the other, rejects it? Conscience.
3. Impartiality- to execute righteous judgement, you don’t have to play games of favoritism. The rules should apply to all! In this life, there can be some exceptions to the rule, but as it is normally said, “the exception is not the rule”. That is quite understandable, but generally speaking, we shouldn’t allow respect of persons to cloud fair judgement. We become impartial when we look at a person’s skin color, financial status, relationship status and the like. We have to look beyond these and assess people based on character.
I end on this. God requires all of us to be just people. You don’t have to be a leader to exhibit that. Start small from wherever you are.
“Mankind, He has told you what is good and what it is the Lord requires of you: to act justly, to love faithfulness, and to walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8
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Till I come your way again…
Peace & Love.