Real Justice and Mercy

Carmen and I regularly attend Dr. Ken Boa's lecture series called Conformed to His Image, taken from the epic book he wrote a few years ago.

Ken told a story about a real judge and how he applied spiritual principles to his daily courtroom work.

The story is about Mayor Laguardia of New York City. Laguardia was mayor of New York from 1933 to 1945. He was very popular among New Yorkers. From time to time he presided overnight court where the people were booked for minor crimes. It gave the mayor a chance to help those in the poorest part of town.

As Ken tells it, Judge Laguardia heard a case of an elderly woman who was arrested for stealing a $10 worth of bread to feed her grandchildren. The Mayor, in his capacity as Judge, told the woman he was duty-bound to follow the law. That meant he had to convict the old woman for the offense which was applying justice. “Pay the $10 fine or serve 10 days in jail”, he was heard to say. Then the Mayor pulled a $10 bill from his wallet and gave it to the old woman to pay the fine. That was a wonderful demonstration of mercy.

After that the mayor fined everyone in the courtroom 50 cents and gave the money to the poor old woman so she would not have to steal bread to feed her grandchildren. I look at this story on two different levels. I long to take my case in front of a judge who applies the law fairly and who also can demonstrate mercy.

On the spiritual level, God provided His only Son to be the only way we can be redeemed of our sin nature. That way is through His Son Jesus Christ. God is perfect and cannot accept us as sinners but, by accepting His Son Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we can be accepted as true sons and daughters of God through Christ and experience a forgiveness of our sin and ultimately experience life eternal.

This lecture always packs many more life applications into each one hour but I thought you might enjoy this one about an earthly Judge who applied spiritual principles for all to see in his courtroom. Check out the internet version of this story.


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