This is a deep question that set of quite the 3 way then 2 way conversation/dialogue on Twitter. Why am I writing about a twitter chat? Simple, the case study that emerged in this convo was around Sex Work, which yes is a current hot button issue of “justice” within the church.
Yet it comes to a much larger issue. For we in Christendom find it easy to acknowledge the “button justice issues” whether it be peace work; just war theory; sex trafficking; slave trade; LGBTTQ Rights (or human rights in general); ending misogyny; inclusion/exculsion of X-Y-Z community; who gets into heaven; feeding the poor; ending homelessness; providing shelter; community involvement; mentorship; tutoring; ESL; sanctuary; sponsoring families; short term missions; long term missions; abortion; petitions; and the litany of our justice issues go on and on.
And yes, I am writing as a member of Christendom currently working in one of the “hot buttong justice” issues of the day in Calgary, AB and that is ending homelessness. Yet I also reflect on deeper understanding of issues. So do I agree with all the questions and answers bandied about, who knows… I know each and every issue is deeper and more complex than a black and white answer; or statistics on a page (stats can be skewed or used to tell any story we wish to tell with them depending on what we declare within the bounds of the statistics, and what are the outliers of the statistics).
But it comes down to the concept of what is justice? A quote I tossed out is from the defrocked Dominican Priest, Matthew Fox, who is highly involved in the progressive Christian movement known as creation spirituality, and it goes simply, “We need to tear down Jacob’s Ladder, and as a world embrace the dancing of Sarah’s Circle”. This quote lends itself to the story in Genesis where Jacob sees the angels (aliens to some) climbing up and down the ladder, it is an image that the Protestant world has used as a metaphor for rampant individualism; caucasoid patriarchy and oppressive practices for if one truly wants to get ahead they need to work hard and climb that ladder. The metaphor of Sarah’s Circle comes from the practice in matriarch of laughter and dancing to get to know one another, and to work together in the household. This idea is to bring all into the communit of inclusion.
Now we humans like to complicate things and Christendom is no different, as I have noted in other writings the term Christianities is much more palpable, but we are attempting to figure out how to renew our world and bring Heaven here, as Jesus of Nazareth commanded us to do in the Gospel of Mark.
Yet the idea of true justice goes beyond being Emergent, Missional, Charismatic, Evangelical, Convergent, Post-Modern, Modern, Catholic, Monastic, Post Christian, Progressive Christian or any other funk label or denomination we in the Body of Christ can come up with to be a plug and play program ideology to solve our woes.
What true justice is?
It is quite simple, and there are over 2 billion of us to lead the way. It is seeing each and every human being as the Sixth Day of Genesis (Genesis 1) states: Made in the image of our Creator, She called us beloved, blessed and Very Good. We are not commodities, we are not rungs on a ladder, we are beloved children of a loving Creator that is in everything, and everything is in her.
Justice is the realization of this creation, marked with our lifespan choices, when God let us leave his care, and enter the world it was not because we were evil or despots, it was simply because we were ready to explore like many late stage adolescents/early adults. This is the truth in Genesis 3 as I read it, for God still provided love and care by clothing us (offering protection), walking with us (as any loving parent when kids leave home), and turning the world over to us to care for and craft paradise in.
So what is justice? Truly living into and out of the love of God…seeing one another as the blessed image bearers…seeing ourselves as the beloved image bearer…
Creating a world where all are included, all 7+ billion of us are seen this way, and a world system is created where each of us can live out not only our agency, but our passion/dreams that is our calling to create make our own community better.
Pollyanic? Maybe, or is it simply moving beyond the cynicism and commodification currently found in our caucasoid heteropatriarchal societies?
- march thirty one: The Anthology For Justice Project – Join The Movement #PoetsUnite (marchthirtyone.wordpress.com)
- Can Social Media Bring Justice for Trayvon Martin? (mashable.com)
- Justice: What Loves Look Like in Public – by Kathy Escobar (godspace.wordpress.com)
- L’église est fermée – By Greg Valerio (godspace.wordpress.com)
- (In)Action. (bslchicago.wordpress.com)
- Justice Anyone??? (avoicethatmatters.wordpress.com)
- Trayvon Martin: FBI, U.S. Justice Department investigating unarmed black teen’s shooting (theprovince.com)
- atonement beyond chistendom… (thewearypilgrim.typepad.com)
- New Research Suggests William Rehnquist Lied About Explosive Memo Backing Racial Segregation (thinkprogress.org)
- Regardless that you ____________, God is still for you! (andrewejenkins.wordpress.com)
- Sidebar: Memo Adds to Doubt on Rehnquist’s Denials – Adam Liptak (nytimes.com)
- 2012 is The End! It’s the Beginning! …Or it’s just another year. (elephantjournal.com)
- Afghan and Iraqi Victims of Torture by U.S. Military Seek Justice From International Human Rights Tribunal (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Social Justice Before It was Cool: The Life and Times of Carl F. H. Henry (Part 2) (bburleson.wordpress.com)
- Social Media Campaign Review – Michael Hoban (umpf.co.uk)
- church: (noun), the whole body of Christian believers; Christendom; origin: before 900 (thetravellingtheologian.wordpress.com)
- Condolences of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev to the Coptic Church in Connection with the Death of the Coptic Pope and Patriarch Shenouda Roufail of Alexandria and all Africa (02varvara.wordpress.com)
- Rick Santorum In 2008: There’s No Such Thing As A Liberal Christian (buzzfeed.com)
- At the Heart of the Matter – Facing Tough Issues (ptl2010.com)
- Is the criticism of Invisible Children’s Kony 2012 viral video fair, justified, and warranted? (compassioninpolitics.wordpress.com)
- Furor Over Trayvon Martin Murder Leads to Justice Dept. Investigation (themoderatevoice.com)
- States Immune from Suit for FMLA Violations Related to Self-Care (lawprofessors.typepad.com)
- Ethical Retribution (socyberty.com)
- French kidnap convict sparks debate in Mexico (seattletimes.nwsource.com)
- What The Rise Of Islam Can Teach Us About God’s Eternal Purpose (jamaljivanjee.com)
- The Supreme Court’s Guide to Good Parenting (slate.com)
- Dialogue in the Realm of Social Justice (homophilosophicus.wordpress.com)
- Privacy injunction statistics published by Ministry of Justice as part of new pilot scheme (blogs.journalism.co.uk)
- Judd speaks out against sex trafficking at United Nations (hollywood.com)
- [Trayvon Martin] (whereshouldistart.wordpress.com)
- CNN: Fighting sex trafficking in hotels, one room at a time (multiplyjustice.net)
- Back-to-work schemes to face court hearing (victimsofatoscorruption.wordpress.com)
- Beach Walk 768 – Justice with Jeff Deskovic (beachwalks.tv)
- As Trayvon Martin Hits the National Media, Will Justice for His Death Follow? (thinkprogress.org)
- Ask A Feminist #7: A personal story (thefword.org.uk)
- Taking a Page from Kony 2012, 3 Ways You Can Help Get Justice for Trayvon Martin (clutchmagonline.com)
- Vibe and Vegas Show: 1 in 3 Black Men Go To Prison? The 10 Most Disturbing Facts About Racial Inequality In The U.S. Criminal Justice System (thevibeandvegasshow.wordpress.com)
- On Public, Private and Horses for Courses… (cloudave.com)
- On Public, Private and Horses for Courses… (diversity.net.nz)
- Trayvon Martin: Justice Department, FBI to Investigate Florida’s Black Teen Death (ibtimes.com)