Social Justice and The Gospel

I can’t possibly say this any better than Dr. Tim Keller and those he quotes. Hence, please welcome him to A Bloom in Winter. In my book, Keller is gold.

“Some say: ‘To do the work of the gospel is to work for justice and peace in the world.’ But Jesus’ primary mission on earth was not to change the social order but to save us from sin. That creates a people who, in any place they reside, will have a transforming influence on the goodness and justness of the political and social order. (See Tom Holland’s Dominion.)

J.I.Packer says, ‘The gospel does bring us solutions to these problems, but it does so by first solving…the deepest of all human problems, the problem of man’s relationship with his Maker, and unless we make it plain that the solution for these former problems depends on the settling of this latter one, we are misrepresenting the message and becoming false witnesses of God.’

In The Screwtape Letters C.S. Lewis has a senior devil writing to a junior devil about how to tempt human beings to move away from “the Enemy”, Jesus. He writes: “The thing to do is to get a man at first to value social justice as a thing which [God] demands, and then work him on to the stage at which he values Christianity because it may produce social justice.

For the Enemy will not be used as a convenience…. You see the little rift? ‘Believe this, not because it is true, but for some other reason.’ That’s the game.” (Letter 23)Note: If those to my “Right” (for the lack of a better term) find these tweets surprising (or insincere), they haven’t read me carefully. If those to my “Left” (for the lack of a better term) think this subverts motivation for doing justice, they are also mistaken.”

-Tim Keller