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Why We Do Justice

(It's not because we feel guilty.)

When we think about justice, often guilt starts settling over us like a dense fog. We see unfairness and injustice, and we know what we don't do. So we feel guilty.

It is easy to see the victims of injustice as "those" people who have a need. We have a resource. We believe that if we use our resource to meet their need, our guilt will be removed. This means we have a need too—the need to not feel guilty. Are our efforts toward justice really about loving others, or are they about alleviating our guilt? Or perhaps we are both using each other to have our own needs met.

In truth, justice isn't about guilt. Guilt is too easy. Justice is about God and what we believe about him. If we are going to move away from guilt-driven efforts, we must root our hearts and our imaginations in the deeply significant theology at the heart of the gospel. There is a question that we have to wrestle to the ground: How are we to see the "other"?

When Bruce started working with homeless people on Saturdays, ...

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