Exodus 23:6 & 8
“You shall not pervert the justice due to your poor in his lawsuit. … And you shall take no bribe, for a bribe blinds the clear-sighted and subverts the cause of those who are in the right.”
I’ll go out on a limb here and suggest that behind every injustice done to an innocent man, behind every righteous cause that gets censored, behind every true testimony that gets shouted down is the direct result of a bribe somewhere down the line. Some phone conversation between constituents on a private line. Some financial grant or laundered money that went under the radar. Some handshake between business partners in the secrecy of an office that went unseen. Some midnight meeting where a false witness—let’s call him Judas—conspired with powerful elites—let’s call them the Sanhedrin—to take out an innocent life—let’s call Him Jesus—for thirty little shekels of blood money. Perhaps the old Scripture that says “The love of money is the root of all evils” really is as literal as it sounds.
I’ll admit: reading Exodus 23:6 & 8 in its specific judicial and civil context makes me want to grab a megaphone and start decrying the greed that is currently infiltrating the back rooms of Washington and Big Pharma and Silicon Valley, obfuscating the truth in our nation from every angle and robbing the poor of justice! If only Christ would storm through the temples of this generation and tear down all the money tables, I’d be right behind Him! But what about me? What about you, friend? How much is your integrity worth? Do we see how devastating a little money can be to our virtue? Do we see how one little compromise, one tiny favor, one small handshake that isn’t ‘all that bad’ and serves ‘a greater good’ belies our consciences? How one transaction begets another and then another until our hands are all twisted up around our eyes and we can’t discern up from down anymore? Do we realize how justice is tainted when the numbers in our bank accounts mean more to us than being rich in love and rich in truth and rich in integrity?
The best megaphone for exposing corruption in our society is Exodus 23:6 & 8 lived out. Nothing resounds better than a virtuous life.