“Seeking justice with the love of God through enabling and encouraging the provision of Christian legal aid and assistance to the poor and needy.”
To plant seeds for Christian legal aid throughout the country and provide resources, support, and training for attorneys and others to start and grow Christian legal aid programs.
People’s legal problems often emerge as symptoms of other issues in their lives. For persons who can afford good legal help, that help can often help bring about a satisfactory solution to their immediate needs and good legal counsel can often help them eliminate other problems. And it is there that the lawyer’s role of counselor can be critical.
Christian Legal Society recognizes that part of the lawyer’s role is often the most important and that many people’s problems, legal and otherwise, are simply the result of spiritual issues that have been unaddressed in their lives. These might often be identified simply as a lack of a relationship with God or the lack of a close relationship with God. These problems, however, are often compounded for the poor. They can’t afford good legal help, as a counselor or otherwise.
God urges us to help the poor–indeed commands us to do justice. Among hundreds of verses in the Bible reflecting our responsibilities to the poor are these:
- “Learn to do right! Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow.” Isaiah 1:17
- “Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke?” Isaiah 58:6
- Defend the weak and the fatherless; uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed. Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked. Psalms 82: 3, 4
- The righteous care about justice for the poor, but the wicked have no such concern. Proverbs 29:7
- 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. Proverbs 31: 8, 9
Christian Legal Aid responds to these commands–to serve the poor with legal help but, perhaps more importantly the spiritual help necessary to eliminate the issues that often cause legal symptoms. Often the most good done in these sessions is simply by providing a listening ear or by caring and showing as best we can the compassion of God. This often restores value to people who are downtrodden and emotionally drained. They don’t know where to turn. In approximately 70% of the cases, we can assist the individuals with a single visit by simply giving them advice as to their legal needs or where they might turn for additional assistance.
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