Justice Quotes

There is no “them and us.” There is only us.

Greg Boyle SJ

I want to be prophetic and take stands and stand with those on the margins, and I want to laugh as much as I can.

Greg Boyle SJ

By acting compassionately, by helping to restore justice and to encourage peace, we acknowledging that we are all part of one another.

Rahm Dass

As you press on for justice, be sure to move with dignity and discipline, using only the weapon of love.  Let no one pull you so low as to hate. Always avoid violence.  If you succumb to the temptation of using violence in your struggle, unborn generations will be the recipients of a long and desolate night of bitterness, and your chief legacy to the future will be an endless reign of meaningless chaos.

Martin Luther King

Justice, then, is not dependent upon the law. That a society does not outlaw an activity does not mean that the activity is just…The more we act for the common good, by being inclusive and letting others speak for themselves, the more we can learn about the people whom we ought to become.

James Keenan SJ

Concern for our neighbor transcends the confines of national communities and has increasingly broadened its horizon to the whole world.

Benedict XVI

I have always found that mercy bears richer fruits than strict justice.

Abraham Lincoln

Courage is of no value unless accompanied by justice; yet if everyone became just, there would be no need for courage.

Agesilaus the Second

The sword of justice has no scabbard.

Antione De Riveral

It is in justice that the ordering of society is centered.


Justice does not come from the outside. It comes from inner peace.

Barbara Hall

Justice is the constant and perpetual will to allot to every man his due.

Domitus Ulpian

It is the spirit and not the form of law that keeps justice alive.

Earl Warren

Justice is a contract of expediency, entered upon to prevent people from harming or being harmed.


The only true principle for humanity is justice; and justice to the feeble is protection and kindness.

Henri-Frédéric Amiel

Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.

Martin Luther King

Justice consists not in being neutral between right and wrong, but in finding out the right and upholding it, wherever found, against the wrong.

Theodore Roosevelt

Justice delayed, is justice denied.

William Gladstone

The order of society is based on two virtues: justice and charity. Charity is the Samaritan who pours oil on the wounds of the traveler who has been attacked. It is justice’s role to prevent the attack.

Frédéric Ozanam

Christian love of neighbor and justice cannot be separated. For love implies an absolute demand for justice, namely a recognition of the dignity and rights of one’s neighbor.

The 1971 Synod of Catholic Bishops

Justice will not come…until those who are not injured are as indignant as those who are.

When you have more than you need, build a longer table, not a higher fence.


Only by being a man or woman for others, does one become fully human.

Pedro Arrupe SJ

To be just, it is not enough to refrain from injustice. One must go further, and refuse to play it’s game: substituting love for self-interest as the driving force of society.

Pedro Arrupe SJ

Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer

It’s a drop of water in the sea. But after this drop, the sea will never be the same.

Mother Teresa

You may choose to look the other way, but you can never say again that you did not know.

William Wilberforce

May God bless you with anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that you may work for justice, freedom and peace.

A Franciscan Benediction

Labor to keep alive in your breast that little spark of celestial fire, called conscience.

George Washington

There are two principles of justice: not to harm anybody and serve to the society’s welfare.


Freedom and justice cannot be parceled out in pieces to suit political convenience. I don’t believe you can stand for freedom for one group of people and deny it to others.

Coretta Scott King

Justice grows out of recognition of ourselves in each other — that my liberty depends on you being free too.

Barack Obama

Crime is a violation of people and relationships. It creates obligations to make things right. Justice involves the victim, the offender, and the community in a search for solutions which promote repair, reconciliation and reassurance.

Howard Zehr

Restorative justice puts a human face on the handling of crime and violence. Rather than being purely punitive in approach, restorative justice involves the entire community.

Carol Palmer

I didn’t realize that what I did affected so many people. I’m sorry and want to make things better.


The restorative justice movement is grounded in values that promote both accountability and healing for all affected by crime.

Mark Umbreit

Our current criminal justice system has no provision for restorative justice, in which an offender confronts the damage they have done and tries to make it right for the people they have harmed. Instead, our system of ‘corrections’ is about arm’s length revenge and retribution, all day and all night.

Piper Kerman

People, even more than things have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, redeemed; never throw out anyone.

Audrey Hepburn

Restorative justice is not a replacement of retributive justice, but a complement. It seeks the rehabilitation of the wrongdoer and the repair of the victim’s injury.

Lewis Smedes

Humanity is never so beautiful as when praying for forgiveness, or else forgiving another.

Jean Paul Richter

Cowardice asks the question, ‘Is it safe?’ Expediency asks the question, ‘Is it politic?’ And Vanity comes along and asks the question, ‘Is it popular?’ But Conscience asks the question, ‘Is it right?’ And there comes  a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but one must do it because Conscience says it it right.

Martin Luther King


He came to Nazareth, where he had grown up, and went according to his custom into the synagogue on the Sabbath day. He stood up to read and was handed a scroll of the prophet Isaiah. He unrolled the scroll and found the passage where it was written: ‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring glad tidings to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, and to proclaim a year acceptable to the Lord.’ Rolling up the scroll, he handed it back to the attendant and sat down, and the eyes of all in the synagogue looked intently at him. He said to them, ‘Today this scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing.’

Luke 4:16-21

I will sing of love and justice to You, O Lord, I will sing praises.

Psalm 101:1-3

Now, will not God bring about justice for His elect who cry to Him day and night, and will He delay long over them?

Luke 18:7

But woe to you Pharisees! For you pay tithe of mint and rue and every kind of garden herb, and yet disregard justice and the love of God; but these are the things you should have done without neglecting the others.

Luke 11:42

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier provisions of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness; but these are the things you should have done without neglecting the others.

Matthew 23:23

Behold, my servant whom I have chosen; my beloved in whom my soul is well-pleased; I will put my spirit upon him, and he shall proclaim justice to the Gentiles.

Matthew 12:18

A battered reed he will not break off, and a smoldering wick he will not put out, until he leads justice to victory.

Matthew 12:20

He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

Micah 6:8

But let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.

Amos 5:24

Therefore, return to your God, Observe kindness and justice, And wait for your God continually.

Hosea 12:6

Again, when a wicked man turns away from his wickedness which he has committed and practices justice and righteousness, he will save his life.

Ezekiel 18:27

In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch of David to spring forth; and He shall execute justice and righteousness on the earth.

Jeremiah 33:15

Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord when I will raise up for David a righteous branch; and He will reign as king and act wisely and do justice and righteousness in the land.

Jeremiah 23:5

How blessed are those who keep justice, Who practice righteousness at all times!

Psalm 106:2-4

Woe to him who builds his house without righteousness and his upper rooms without justice, Who uses his neighbor’s services without pay and does not give him his wages.

Jeremiah 22:13

A bruised reed He will not break and a dimly burning wick He will not extinguish; He will faithfully bring forth justice.

Isaiah 42:3

Learn to do good; seek justice, Reprove the ruthless, Defend the orphan, Plead for the widow.

Isaiah 1:17

Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold; My chosen one in whom My soul delights I have put My Spirit upon Him He will bring forth justice to the nations.

Isaiah 42:1

The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me To bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to captives And freedom to prisoners.

Isaiah 61:1

To do righteousness and justice is desired by the Lord more than sacrifice.

Proverbs 21:3

The works of His hands are truth and justice; All His precepts are sure.

Psalm 111:7

How blessed are those who keep justice, Who practice righteousness at all times!

Psalm 106:3

He loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of the love of the Lord.

Psalm 33:5

Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; Love and truth go before You.

Psalm 89:14

He leads the humble in justice, And He teaches the humble His way.

Psalm 25:8-10

You shall not pervert the justice due an alien or an orphan, nor take a widow’s garment in pledge.

Deuteronomy 24:17

Justice, and only justice, you shall pursue, that you may live and possess the land which the Lord your God is giving you.

Deuteronomy 16:19-21

If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?

James 2:16

When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit upon his glorious throne, and all the nations will be assembled before him. And he will separate them one from another, as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will place the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. Then the king will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father. Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.’ Then the righteous will answer him and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? When did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?’ And the king will say to them in reply, ‘Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.. Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you accursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, stranger and you gave me no welcome, naked and you gave me no clothing, ill and in prison, and you did not care for me.’ Then they will answer and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or ill or in prison, and not minister to your needs?’ He will answer them, ‘Amen, I say to you, what you did not do for one of these least ones, you did not do for me.’

Matthew 25:31-45

How does the love of God abide in anyone who has the world’s goods and sees another brother or sister in need and yet refuses to help?

1 John 3:17

And Mary said, ‘My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord; my spirit rejoices in God my savior. For he has looked upon his handmaid’s lowliness; behold, from now on will all ages call me blessed. The Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name. His mercy is from age to age to those who fear him. He has shown might with his arm, dispersed the arrogant of mind and heart. He has thrown down the rulers from their thrones but lifted up the lowly. The hungry he has filled with good things; the rich he has sent away empty. He has helped Israel his servant, remembering his mercy, according to his promise to our fathers, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.’

Luke 1: 46-55