The Just Church - 6 chapters in
Thank you for joining me for my third instalment as I read and review Jim Martin's book 'The Just Church'. You can catch up with what I thought of the first chapter by clicking here.
Jim Martin is tackling a huge topic that is extremely relevant for the church in our world today. It is not just about a cosy, comfortable church but about a church engaged with the world around it and a church that works to bring healing in freedom to those who are hurting and enslaved. It is a big calling and an extremely tall order. It would be easy for an individual, or indeed a church community to feel overwhelmed by the scale of the problem and be likely to give up or not bother to engage at all.
However, 'The Just Church' helps to discuss the problem through the lense of a church that has already found ways of engaging with the problem of social justice. It demonstrates practically how a church can get involved. It is not all theory, nor is it full of doom-and-gloom stories, although some sad case studies are included but only to highlight the severity of the issues and examples of how this particular church responded is also included.
In the first chapter, Jim explained that we need to be pushed to reach our 'failure point' in order for us to exercise our faith and completely trust God. Chapters 2 and 3 give real life stories of a few people who reached this failure point by engaging with issues of social justice. Chapters 4, 5 and 6 go beyond just reaching the 'failure point' but show what happens next - how faith is built - how God moves in miraculous ways - how God honours us when we step out in faith and take a risk for things that are on His heart.
As I read, I can see and understand more clearly how engaging in issues of social justice although being uncomfortable and even potentially painful, is one way that a church and the people within it can seriously deepen their discipleship and faith as well as following the biblical command to set the captives free and to take care of the widow and the orphan.