Washington, D.C., is a city of strong opinions. You don't have to go far to find protesters, picketers, or pundits making their views known in front of a government building. Perhaps that's why most tourists flock to monuments commemorating our greatest leaders and fallen heroes—they remind us of our unity when so much in Washington speaks to our divisions.
The nation's capital seemed a fitting location to talk about the nature of justice and the gospel. While Jesus Christ unites church leaders, there are still strong differences of opinion about how justice fits in the church's calling. Leadership's Skye Jethani sat down with two prominent Christian leaders who live in D.C. While their perspectives diverge on several issues, they also find much they share in common.
After graduating from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and participating in the Civil Rights Movement, Jim Wallis became founder and editor of Sojourners, a magazine and community focused on the biblical call to social justice. His acts of civil disobedience have landed Wallis in jail 22 times, and his decades of advocacy have helped ignite the current passion among evangelicals for justice.
Mark Dever is senior pastor of Capitol Hill Baptist Church. Before he arrived in 1994, the 143-year-old congregation had seen decades of numerical decline and urban decay. The neighborhood was festering with drugs, poverty, and crime. Dever's leadership helped turn the church and community around. Dever also serves as a trustee at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and as the president of 9Marks Ministries (9marks.org). These roles have made him one of the leading voices in the New Reformed movement.