2 Different Ways of Understanding Justice: Naturalism and Christianity
Naturalism is the view that there is no such thing as God or the supernatural or the spiritual world, all we are is matter acting up chance and time in a closed physical reality. This worldview leads to a radically different understanding of justice. Here’s a compare and contrast of the views:
Naturalism: In the beginning there was no such thing as justice, until we made it up.
Christianity: In the beginning there was a good, perfectly just God; justice long preceded us.
Naturalism: Our ideas of justice are merely a trick of our genes to make us reproduce.
Christianity: Our ideas of justice exist because there really is such a thing as justice and just actions, and we are morally obligated to pursue them.
Naturalism: Universe doesn’t care if we humans are cruel or just.
Christianity: Universe doesn’t care if we humans are cruel or just–it can’t!–but the God who made the universe and sustains it does care, and shows us that justice is good and ought to be pursued.
Naturalism: There is no such thing as non-human objective moral standards that all humans are accountable to and which justice might be objectively defined. Cruelty and Kindness are preferences of the individual or group and will be enforced by whoever is in power.
Christianity: There are objective moral standards all humans are accountable to which come from the character of the one true God who is perfectly just and good.
Naturalism: There is no judgment after death–regardless of how virtuous or murderous one lives, everyone is merely stardust (how could stardust ever create or bring about ultimate justice anyways?).
Christianity: There is a judgment after death, everyone will be fairly judged, justice will be fully satisfied.
Naturalism: One day the universe will burn up and every just or evil thing we ever do will be ultimately and utterly forgotten and utterly and absolutely inconsequential.
Christianity: We all will live forever, either with God in His gracious presence, or apart from God’s gracious presence. The decisions and actions we do now will echo into eternity and have consequences for us now and into eternity.
Naturalism: Any impulse regarding how we ought to approach justice is merely a human preference or opinion.
Christianity: There are right and wrong ways to approach justice, and we ought to pursue justice rightly–even if every human said otherwise.