Good, Beautiful, and Kind: Justice is a Love Issue

Justice is a Love Issue

Introduction: Unveiling the Essence of Justice

In the culmination of our Lenten Sermon Series, “Good and Beautiful and Kind,” we delve into the pivotal topic of justice. At its core, justice is not merely a societal issue but an embodiment of love. As Langston Hughes poetically pondered in his work “Tired,” the yearning for a world teeming with goodness, beauty, and kindness is palpable. But what role does justice play in actualizing this vision?

Justice from Childhood to Adulthood

From infancy, the inclination towards justice is ingrained within us. Children, even at tender ages, exhibit an innate sense of fairness, highlighting our natural predisposition towards rectifying wrongs. Research underscores this innate instinct, revealing how children, in acts as simple as cookie distribution, demonstrate a penchant for rectifying injustice.

The Biblical Paradigm of Justice

Biblical justice transcends mere legal retribution; it encompasses the holistic renewal of society, both on interpersonal and institutional levels. Contrary to popular reductionism, justice isn’t a standalone concept but an embodiment of love in public, as articulated by philosopher Cornel West. This biblical perspective challenges the tendency to privatize spirituality, emphasizing the interconnectedness of worship and justice.

The Divine Condemnation of Superficial Worship

Proverbs 21 poignantly juxtaposes justice with sacrifices, exposing the fallacy of detached spirituality. God rejects empty rituals divorced from social responsibility, exemplified in biblical passages decrying worship devoid of justice. The message is clear: authentic worship intertwines with acts of compassion, mercy, and justice.

Embodying the Gospel in Justice

Jesus Christ epitomizes the fusion of spiritual and social redemption. His ministry heralded liberation not only from sin but also from systemic oppression. The gospel isn’t confined to personal salvation; it’s a transformative force that confronts injustice and restores dignity to the marginalized.

Practical Invitations: Actualizing Justice in Daily Life

  • Start Small: Justice isn’t solely reserved for grand gestures; it flourishes in everyday acts of compassion and advocacy.
  • Name Your Burdens: Recognize and respond to the burdens stirring within, for they might be divine calls to action.
  • Check Your Proximity: Engage with the marginalized and vulnerable, embodying God’s heart for the oppressed.
  • Guard Against Numbness: Resist becoming desensitized to injustice, channeling righteous anger into tangible action.

Conclusion: Answering the Call to Justice

The journey towards justice is intertwined with the very essence of our faith. It’s a summons to coalesce with God in the restoration of a world characterized by goodness, beauty, and kindness. Through prayer, action, and unwavering commitment, we embark on a sacred mission—to infuse the world with the love-driven justice that our souls crave.

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