My guest post at the Willow Creek leadership blog.
Here’s the first part:
One of the major themes about Christ in the book of Isaiah is that he cares a lot about justice. For example, Isaiah says that “he will bring forth justice to the nations” (42:1), that “he will faithfully bring forth justice” (42:3) and that “he will not grow faint or be discouraged until he has established justice in the earth” (42:4).
In his book Good News About Injustice, Gary Haugen points out that justice is “the right use of power.” To use power rightly means to skillfully exercise it in the service of others — especially those who are in need or in a situation where they are unable to help themselves. That’s why the Bible lays substantial emphasis on caring for the orphan and the widow: “Seek justice, correct oppression, bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow’s cause” (Isaiah 1:17).
One implication of this that is rightly getting a lot of attention in the church today is that we should spend ourselves radically in the fight against global poverty, human trafficking, and other injustices. A concern for justice means a concern for addressing large global problems.
A concern for justice also implies a concern for something else that is sometimes overlooked–namely, leadership. For if justice is “the right use of power,” then good leadership is a form of justice. And, conversely, bad leadership — even if unintentionally so — is a subtle form of injustice.