For the last few days over on my Facebook page we have been discussing Social Justice. Of course this all came about because one entertainer mentioned that Churches that speak about social justice are Communists and Nazis.
So what is this concept of Social Justice? One thing to keep in mind. This concept of Social Justice is as old as the church itself.
All who believed were together and had all things in common; they would sell their property and possessions and divide them among all according to each one's need.
Okay so from the start the church members had all things in common. But what is at the heart of Social Justice? Very simply it is the command from Jesus to Love your neighbor! This is what we will be judged on, how we loved each other and cared for each other.
A second point is that in my mind Christian Social Justice has little or nothing to do with the Government. I agree that welfare has a place but it should not be a lifestyle. Welfare is a hand up not a hand out. Yes, sometimes we need to give out bread to stop the hunger but Christian Social Justice is all about teaching the people how to fish not just giving them a fish. It is investing in Sustainable Community Development and this takes years.
It is nice to go to a place like Haiti or Chile after an earthquake and work, but real social justice is working for real change, not just economic but a real change in men's hearts! The system that causes injustice can only be changed by changing men's hearts and that change only comes with conversion to Christ.
The entertainer that I spoke of at the start of this piece belongs to the Mormon Church. Now I do not know much about Mormons but I do know they have a strong sense of Social Justice. Here is a quote I found from a simple Google Search:
LDS scripture and prophetic teaching speak out strongly for social justice: for peace, equality, democracy, human rights, and wise stewardship of the earth’s resources. Latter-day Saints are enjoined to “plead the cause of the poor and the needy” (D&C 124:75) and to work towards a society in which “there [are] no poor among[us]” (Moses 7:18). We are challenged to “renounce war and proclaim peace” (D&C 98:16). The Book of Mormon teaches that “there should be an equality among all” (Mosiah 27:3) and calls us to stand against racism, gender inequity, and injustice on the principle that “black and white, bond and free, male and female;...all are alike unto God” (2 Nephi 26:33). The scriptures commend democracy, constitutional law, and human rights (Mosiah 29:26; D&C 98:5; D&C 101:77), while speaking harshly against inequity, exploitation, oppression, and violence (2 Nephi 20:1-2; 3 Nephi 24:5; D&C 38:26; Moses 8:28). Scripture teaches us that we are stewards of the earth and its resources, which should be used “with judgment, not to excess” (D&C 59:20).
This is a pretty strong and clear statement. So I guess this person will be leaving their church as well!
The bottom line is Social Justice, from a Christian point of view begins with change, real change, change of the heart! That change can only come from Jesus Christ, plain and simple!