Biblical Call to JusticePosted: Saturday, November 12, 2011 Filed under: 2k11 | Tags: biblical call, isaiah 58, justice, Matthew 25, Micah 6:8 Comments Off on Biblical Call to Justice
Louis and I were recently asked to participate in a panel discussion about Christian Community Development. One of the questions we were asked to prepare for was…
Select one scripture that you think best describes the biblical call to justice, and what it has meant to your specific ministry.
As I prayerfully prepared for the panel discussion, I started making a list, thinking I would narrow it down to one. Well, that never happened. I realized that I couldn’t narrow it down. It seems like I can’t read the Bible without seeing the Redemption Story and our role…our mission in bringing justice on earth as it is in heaven.
The short list of scriptures I came up with when I finally stopped…. What scripture drives you?
Micah 6:8 The Message (MSG)
But he’s already made it plain how to live, what to do, what God is looking for in men and women. It’s quite simple: Do what is fair and just to your neighbor, be compassionate and loyal in your love, And don’t take yourself too seriously — take God seriously.
John 1:14 The Message (MSG)
The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighborhood. We saw the glory with our own eyes, the one-of-a-kind glory, like Father, like Son, Generous inside and out, true from start to finish.
Matthew 16:18-19 New Living Translation (NLT)
18 Now I say to you that you are Peter (which means ‘rock’), and upon this rock I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it. 19 And I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven. Whatever you forbid, bind, or lock on earth will be forbidden in heaven, and whatever you permit, loose or open on earth will be permitted in heaven.”
Matthew 25:39-40 New International Version (NIV)
I was hungry and you gave me no meal,
I was thirsty and you gave me no drink,
I was homeless and you gave me no bed,
I was shivering and you gave me no clothes,
Sick and in prison, and you never visited.’
40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
Matthew 5:3 New International Version (NIV)
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Luke 6:20 New International Version (NIV)
Looking at his disciples, he said: “Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.”
Isaiah 58 New International Version (NIV)
6 “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? 7 Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter— when you see the naked, to clothe them, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood? 8 Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness[a] will go before you, and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard. 9 Then you will call, and the LORD will answer; you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I. “If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and malicious talk, 10 and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday. 11 The LORD will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail. 12 Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins and will raise up the age-old foundations; you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls, Restorer of Streets with Dwellings.
Acts 2 The Fellowship of the Believers
42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.
Neighbor 8: Someone Who Is Unable to Ask for HelpPosted: Monday, August 8, 2011 Filed under: 2k11, books, who is your neighbor? series | Tags: chapter a day, good neighbor, Good Samaritan, Isaiah 55:8-11, justice, Proverbs 31:8-9, Wayne Gordon Comments Off on Neighbor 8: Someone Who Is Unable to Ask for Help
Chapter 8 answers the question with…‘My Neighbor is Unable to Ask for Help”.
You know, it seems like I have addressed this in previous posts…those unable to ask are hurting, need help, cannot help themselves, appear on my path, have been robbed, half dead and naked. Any and all of these friends may not be able to ask for the help. So, I am kinda stuck here on who to cover in this post. So, it will be short. Isaiah, the prophet, said these words in Isaiah 55:8-11 (NLT).
8 “My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord.
“And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.
9 For just as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so my ways are higher than your ways
and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.
10 “The rain and snow come down from the heavens
and stay on the ground to water the earth.
They cause the grain to grow,
producing seed for the farmer
and bread for the hungry.
11 It is the same with my word.
I send it out, and it always produces fruit.
It will accomplish all I want it to,
and it will prosper everywhere I send it.
I’m going to let the Word speak for itself with no explanations. My thoughts are not His thoughts. He wants sooo much more for us than we can possibly imagine. Gordon offers us scripture that tells what we are to do…so let this Word not return void. Let this scripture speak to you. Meditate on it. Ask the Lord…What do you want to tell me through this scripture? What, specifically, are You calling me to do? Show me what that looks like. Then, go and do. Let’s do the Bible together.
Proverbs 31:8-9 (NLT)
8 Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves;
ensure justice for those being crushed.
9 Yes, speak up for the poor and helpless,
and see that they get justice.
Thanks God for giving us your Word to instruct, rebuke, correct and train us so that we may be fully equipped to do your work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17) I pray that through Proverbs 31:8-9 that you will speak to all who read it. Allow this scripture to prick our hearts into action. Teach us oh Lord how we can speak for those who can’t speak for themselves. Use us to seek justice here on earth….so that your kingdom will come on earth as it is in heaven. In the name of our Savior I pray, Amen.
This is the 8th post in a series that I wrote about in who’s ur neighbor?. I am reading who is my neighbor? by Wayne Gordon and exploring just one chapter a day. In addition, I hope to post on each chapter each day…starting August 1st…no promises, though. The first one in the series can be found here: Neighbor 1: Hurting.