Rules are part of life. Rules of fairness are made so everyone can have an equal chance. If a person does not play fair, he will lose some friends.
Friendships, work, relationships and marriage are all about fairness. When someone doesn’t honor the rules, respect is lost.
What or who decides what is correct, proper, honorable or fair? God speaks very clearly about what He knows to be the correct, proper, and honorable. In plain language, He wants His children to be fair in their living.
A great place to start would be Deuteronomy 1:17. “You shall not show partiality in judgment.” Those are the words of Moses to Israel about selecting judges.
Showing respect and fairness is not a one-time thing but a way of life. In other words, consistency is the rule. Job showed great restraint when his acquaintances told him he was wrong, and God was punishing him. Job held to his principles, saying, “Let me not, I pray, show partiality to anyone” 32:21.
God’s standard of fairness is different from most of ours. We are human. We tend to want things to our advantage. Longevity is one of those principles that has crept into our lives and churches. “We’ve been here for a long time. We worked our way up the ladder. It’s my turn. I’ve earned it.” These are some of our thoughts. We may not say them out loud, but they are real to us. We all have had them.
God, in His fairness, is also the God of mercy. He knows we cannot be perfect. We are all sinners. He knew we would be sinners before He created Adam. Because of His foreknowledge, our God knew we needed a savior, our sin-bearer. Jesus became sin for us. Through the shed blood of Jesus, we have forgiveness of sin. That is mercy in reality. The Lord described himself as “merciful and gracious” in Psalm 103:8. It was true yesterday, and it is true today.
The parable of the vineyard in Matthew 20 explodes our premise. The owner hired laborers in the early morning, midday, and even at the last hour of the workday. But, when compensation or reward time came, the owner paid everybody the same. So, in fairness, the laborers’ wages were as per the verbal contract. Some disagreed. “We’ve worked in the heat of the day,” they said. In essence, they said, “we did more than the newcomers, and we deserve better treatment.” Have you ever thought something like that? Probably.
From God’s perspective, are those thoughts in agreement with His? No. Because God gives eternal life to whoever calls upon the name of the Lord. That is Romans 3:22 in the application. “Even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference.” Fairness is based upon the uncompromising word of the Bible, our standard.
To put things in perspective, at least to my understanding, we serve God because we love Him. It’s certainly not for earthly rewards or advancement. God encourages us to show our genuine love for Him by doing—helping others. To be loyal to Jesus every day of our lives. That’s fair. That puts everybody on the same page. I know His assessment will be correct according to His fairness.