(Click here for a video ofJohn reading today’s Catch.)
There can be no debate about this: God is on the side of the poor, the weak, the disenfranchised and the powerless. God is in the business of setting things right. That is what justice is. It’s putting everyone on equal footing. It’s raising up the powerless and bringing down the proud.
I repeated the illustration from yesterday in today’s Catch, in case you didn’t take the time to notice it. Three little guys are standing on crates in order to watch a ball game over a fence. The taller one and the middle guy are doing fine, but the littler one is too short to see over, even with the crate, so the taller one, realizing this, stacks his crate on top of the little boy’s, so that they can all see together. It’s such a simple illustration but it says a lot. It says the taller one had to have noticed the little guy couldn’t see, and that he could do something about that. Justice is first noticing the inequity, and then doing something about it. We may not always be able to do something about injustice, but we need to be looking for where we can.
Noticing is half the battle. We need to humble ourselves for what we can learn from the people God respects. Remember, God is on their side.
There’s so much we can do. Make genuine friendships with those who are different from us. Listen. Learn to see through someone else’s cultural eyes. Ask them to tell us what it’s like.
We talk about the gospel of welcome here at the Catch. Just how big is that gospel? Is it just big enough to get someone into heaven, or can it bring heaven down to earth? God has us praying that His will would be done on earth as it is in heaven. Think about that. In heaven we’re all equally important. It’s no different here.
And just what was the gospel for Jesus? Did He go around encouraging people to accept Himself into their hearts as their personal savior? No, He went around preaching “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” What does repent mean if it doesn’t mean to change — to turn around — to stop doing what is wrong, and start doing what is right. Justice requires us to change.
I urge you to listen to our BlogTalkRadio interview from last night with Wayne Bridegroom. It will get you thinking in the right direction. Wayne talked about a Christianity that is an inch deep and a mile wide. We need to deepen our experience with Christ and a lot of that will come when we seek justice. Wayne said the righteous are willing to disadvantage themselves to advantage the community; the wicked are willing to disadvantage the community to advantage themselves.
Wayne concluded that justice is love made public. To which he added: “If God is love, then justice is God made public.” Isn’t that what we’re here to do?