img_0002.JPGLately I have been spending a lot of time thinking about the connection of doing Justice and telling people about Jesus. I grew up in church hearing and understanding that our job as followers of Jesus was to tell others about Him. I remember a few times where I had the opportunity to pray with some of my friends as they asked Jesus to come and be a part of their lives so that they could go to heaven and spend eternity with Him. I used to pray daily from my friends Chad, Huey and others to find Jesus, or for Jesus to find them, depending on if your a Calvinist or Arminianist.  I understood from God’s word that if we do not accept and believe in the saving grace of Jesus that we would spend eternity in Hell, separated from Jesus when we die. This thought plagued me as I did not want anyone to go to Hell and I knew that a part of my responsibility as a follower of Jesus was to do whatever I could to stop that from happening. I tried to follow Jesus commission to us to “go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.”

A few years ago I started thinking a lot about social justice. It bothered me that there are thousands upon thousands of people dying every day because they don’t have clean water to drink, but I spend extra time in the shower in the mornings using and wasting gallons upon gallons of water because it is chilly in the house and I want to stay warm. This burdened my heart and I started acting and praying that God would use me to bring justice to an unjust world. I spoke to students about justice, wrote prayer focuses on it and volunteered at a homeless women and children’s center because of it.

I tried to do this with no agenda at all. My acting on injustice was not dependat on those who were the victims of injustice coming to Christ. I believed and still believe that Jesus wants all people to be treated justly, regardless of if they belief in Him or not. People are God’s creation and God wants us to care for his creation. He tells us in the Gospels that the greatest command is to “love the Lord with all your heart and to love your neighbor as yourself.”

Lately I have been thinking that you can’t have one of these views without the other. You can’t tell people about Jesus and let people starve to death and you also can’t feed people and watch them go to Hell with full bellies. I think that I have gone from one extreme to the other. I read in Dan Kimball’s blog a quote that he used from Ron Sider where he writes “I long for the day when every village, town and city has congregations of Christians so in love with Jesus Christ that they lead scores of people to accept Him as personal Savior and Lord every year- and so sensitive to the cry of the poor, and oppressed that they work vigorously for justice, peace and freedom.”

If I truly love people like Christ loves people I will be working to see the hungry full, the sick well, the oppressed fought for, the homeless put in homes, the sex predator convicted and the sexually oppressed restored. I also will be doing this in the name of Jesus. Doing this so that those who are oppressed and not in relationship with Jesus will be free from their oppression and given the opportunity to receive Jesus as their Lord and Savior. It is not conditional, it is not either or, it is both.

For more on these thoughts check out Dan Kimball’s post here.

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One comment so far on “do justice

  1. Clayre says:

    So true. I love that Jesus fed the 5,000 but he also told us that man does not live on bread alone and that He is the bread of life. You’re so right, it is both.

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