The original Hebrew and Greek words are the same as those rendered "righteousness." This is the common rendering, and in about half the cases where we have "just" and "justice" in the, the American Standard has changed to "righteous" and "righteousness." It must be constantly borne in mind that the two ideas are essentially the same.
The word "justice" does not occur in the New Testament, and in most cases where we find "just" in the King James Version it is changed to "righteous" in the American Standard Revised Version. The idea of justice or righteousness (remembering that these are essentially the same) becomes more spiritual and ethical in the New Testament. It is a matter of character, and God’s own spirit is the standard (1
Justice of God
God’s justice, or righteousness, is founded in His essential nature. But, just as with man, it is not something abstract, but is seen in His relation to the world. It is His kingship establishing and maintaining the right. It appears as retributive justice, "that reaction of His holy will, as grounded in His eternal being, against evil wherever found." He cannot be indifferent to good and evil (
And God’s justice is not merely gracious, but redemptive. It not simply apportions rights, it establishes righteousness. Thus, just as in the
Comm., and Biblical Theologies under "Justice" and "Righteousness," and especially Cremer, Biblical-Theol. Lex. of New Testament Greek