Evangelicals are often concerned with getting the gospel right, but they are often not so careful at carefully thinking through the implications of the gospel. One area has had more attention recently is the area of social justice. I have to say being one who attends a church that isn’t too active in the area. I find myself often not think gin about this aspect. Timothy Keller has however persuaded me to think otherwise.
In this book, Keller has given me ample reason to consider the implications of what it means to be a christian and a church in out world. In the first section, Keller wants to highlight the magnitude of the problem. He shows how many in America is suffering and lacking in many aspect. As one who does not come from America, I did not find the first chapter to every helpful. However, the rest of the chapters were excellent and helped me visualised similar problems that happens in my own country.
Keller uses the parable of the good Samaritan and makes an excellent case of highlighting the importance of meeting the needs of others. Within the book, I found that Keller gives a very balance approach between meeting the felt needs of people and also meeting their spiritual needs. Keller helps christians think christianly about these issues and helps to see that both aspects are essential to the work of social justice.
In the next section, Keller then helps the christian think through how to implement such measures within the church. I have found this section to be very helpful as well. As one who is convicted by Keller is saying, you might be wondering, how will I be able to implement these in my church? This is where this section comes in. Keller guides readers through the whole process from the start, even before the ministry has started. He highlights the importance of preparing the congregation, looking to God to provide the means of meeting such meets. He helps readers think not only of how to start a particular ministry, but also how to ensure that the ministry continues and grows in the process. One area I liked especially was how Keller talks about what we should do when someone leaves the ministry. This is often an area that is often overlooked or simply ignored. I’m glad that Keller has brought up some pointers on it.
Overall, I have often this book to be an excellent book to read if you’re thinking about how you or the church can grow in the social justice aspect. I’m sure this book will be a good biblical and practical guide for you. Recommended for pastors or ministry leaders serving in this aspect.
Rating: 4.75 / 5
Disclaimer: I was given this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review
P.S. I would also recommend Good News to the Poor: Social Involvement and the Gospel by Tim Chester as a companion to this book, you can get it here and here (free international shipping), kindle.