This week a famous sports presenter was suspended by the BBC for speaking out against what he saw as a cruel policy directed against immigrants, ‘some of the most vulnerable people’ (in society). Many other presenters have stood in solidarity with him.
It reminded me of Edmund Burke’ s famous quote that “the only thing required for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.”
Sometimes keeping quiet can be the right thing, but remaining silent and refusing to speak against what is wrong, is wrong in itself. We are called by God to speak up against injustice and oppression. Choosing to be silent against wrongdoing, in effect means we are not against it. Indeed, it means we are tolerating it, and in essence, supporting it.
We read in the book of Proverbs “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.”( 31:8-9)
We see Jesus throughout the Gospels, speaking out against those who were doing harm to others - constantly confronting wrong doing.
When injustice is being done, not speaking up about it and not trying to act to bring about justice is clearly the wrong thing to do. The message of Scripture is that we should always be prepared to speak up when faced with injustice or unrighteousness, but to do so carefully, with compassion and clarity.
It may be there will be consequences we have to face, but not to do so may have even more serious repercussions for others. Don’t let your fear or lack of self-confidence prevent you from speaking up and opposing wrongdoing against those who have no voice.