But let justice flow like water,Amos 5:24
and righteousness, like an unfailing stream.
Read the book of Amos and one of the standout themes you’ll see over and over again is God’s passion for social justice. He cares about immigrants and orphans, the poor and the oppressed. He cares so much, in fact, that he’s willing to judge entire nations over how those groups are treated. That’s an important piece of trivia to keep in mind as America debates how to respond to allegations of systemic injustice.
In recent years, racism has been the hot topic. Cities have literally burned over it. Homes have been destroyed, businesses have been looted and lives have been lost. Racism is a problem in America, and if you think God doesn’t care about it, you haven’t read the Bible.
Racism isn’t the only issue that God cares about, however. Here’s a few others:
- Oppressing the poor, for instance, redlining.
- Sex trafficking and other forms of slavery.
- Immigration, legal and otherwise.
- Treatment of orphans.
- The environment (yes, the environment).
- Women’s rights.
The list could be longer, but you get the point. There are a lot of issues out there regarding which God’s people could better. Maybe it’s time we did something other than post quippy memes on social media. Maybe it’s time to take action, to give and to go. This is an election year. Maybe it’s time to look past the issues and examine the parties themselves. In this, an election year, where do the Democrats and Republicans, the Communists, the Green party, or whoever you’re most interested today line up with regard to biblical values? God’s justice is compatible with His compassion, grace and love. How does your party line up with that?
Many people today cry out loudly with a claim to righteous anger, but that too must be compatible with the character of God. Sarcasm? Flippancy? Name calling? All tactics in common use in the battle for social justice, and all are equally unhelpful and counterproductive. And here are a couple of other useful tips:
- Complex issues require complex solutions.
- What took years to break will take years to fix.
- How we approach the issues is just as important as what we say in debating them.
- As followers of Jesus, our first loyalty is to the kingdom of heaven, not the republics of men.