Doing Justice and Mercy – Gospel in Life
Sermon

Doing Justice and Mercy

Tim Keller |  March 20, 2016

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Duration:
42:21
Scripture:
Isaiah 58:1-14
SKU:
RS 365-04

Overview

Each week we’re taking a look at a piece of the vision of Redeemer and this is it:
As a church of Jesus Christ, Redeemer exists to help build a great city for all people through a movement of the gospel that brings personal conversion, community formation, social justice and cultural renewal to New York City and through it, the world.
Today, we’re looking at social justice.

We’re doing it this week, partly because it’s Palm Sunday, which is the Sunday that Jesus Christ was declared the King and rode into Jerusalem. In the Bible, one of the primary things that kings did was to administer Justice. And this morning we’re going to look at how Jesus Christ fulfills justice and how he does justice in the world.

First, we’re gonna learn about the startling importance of justice. Secondly, the fulsome nature of justice, and thirdly, how we get the ability to do justice in the world.

Sermon Summary

Exploring the concept of justice, it’s evident that it is a crucial element of the church’s vision, deeply intertwined with fasting and worship as accentuated in Isaiah. This is further exemplified during Palm Sunday, where Jesus, the declared king, administers justice. The focus on caring for the poor and marginalized, future plans for church planting and training for justice, and the comprehensive nature of justice all spotlight the importance of acquiring the ability to do justice in the world.

1. The startling importance of justice

The profound significance of supporting the vulnerable and oppressed is illuminated, with a focus on a religious and ethical group who, despite their diligent observances and moral behavior, find their prayers unanswered due to their neglect of the poor. The idea that religious practices alone are insufficient without also caring for the marginalized is a radical departure from the norms of ancient cultures where deities aligned with the powerful. The Bible consistently echoes this theme, asserting that true faith is demonstrated through a commitment to social justice and service to the poor.

2. The fulsome nature of justice

Christianity places a high value on justice, which is grasped in the Bible as equal treatment, advocacy for the vulnerable, and generosity. The Hebrew term for justice, mišpaṭ, encapsulates these principles, promoting racial and social equity, condemning corruption, and recognizing our shared humanity. It also calls for active advocacy for the oppressed and generous sharing of resources, challenging us to change social structures that perpetuate injustice.

3. Where you get the ability to do justice

Addressing poverty and injustice necessitates more than social policies and technology, it requires confronting the inherent evil impulses in human nature. A genuine change of heart is crucial, where individuals willingly engage in acts of justice out of love and delight, not just personal gain. The concept of God suffering with humanity and becoming poor and oppressed for redemption’s sake reinforces the importance of grasping God’s beauty and obeying laws of social justice out of love.

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February Book Offer

Put Your Hope Not in Lesser gods, But in the One True God

In his book Counterfeit Gods, Tim Keller shows us how a proper understanding of the Bible reveals the truth about societal ideals and our own hearts — and that there is only one God who can wholly satisfy our cravings and fulfill our hopes.

February Book Offer

Put Your Hope Not in Lesser gods, But in the One True God

In his book Counterfeit Gods, Tim Keller shows us how a proper understanding of the Bible reveals the truth about societal ideals and our own hearts — and that there is only one God who can wholly satisfy our cravings and fulfill our hopes.