Logos journal hosted an event on Friday, February 5th to encourage conversation about the nature of justice. A group of Yalies came together around a table to tackle the difficulties in writing about justice. They began by trying to answer the question: what is justice? They looked at some of the unspoken givens understood when discussing justice, such as the idea of equity. There must be a balance of some kind, whether in interpersonal relations, commerce or God-man relations. Consequentially, participants agreed that justice describes conditions between two or more entities.
However, the participants agreed that justice cannot be described from merely subject experiences; it relates to the character of God. Here, the Trinity provided a beautiful image of perfect harmony, where the three Persons give and receive love leaving no void in their relationship. Can a monodic god be just from eternity if no other party exists with whom to maintain a balance of love or justice? They also considered whether a thing is just or good because, as Plato wondered, God’s whim declared it so, or whether God declared it so because it is good.
Furthermore, participants mused about how to think about justice in a societal and individual sense and looked to a few examples of Jesus’ polemic statements about justice. How do we understand Jesus apparently using a racial slur for the Canaanite woman when he referred to her people as dogs? They wrestled with objections to Christian notions of a just God because of the problem of evil and because of stoning laws in the Old Testament. In the spirit of intellectual pursuit, they did not seek to answer all these questions. However, they expressed their thoughts and their passions through the organic process of conversation.
Pedro Alonso Enamorado, Editor-in-Chief at Logos Journal
Yale College Class of 2017