Jesus did not talk about the things that social ethicists like me talk about. He did not talk about problems of proximate means and ends, theories of justice, intersectional criticism, critical race theory, calculated consequences, postcolonial theory, or defending structures of justice. The gospel has no theory of politics or economics. But the teaching of Jesus impels us into the struggle for a just and peaceable world and holds us there, whether or not we succeed. That is its social relevance. To love God above all things, and your neighbor as yourself, is not merely the content of an impossible ethical ideal, as Reinhold Niebuhr called it. It is the motive force of the struggle for the flourishing of all human life and creation. The love of Jesus makes you care, makes you angry, throws you into the struggle, keeps you in it, and helps you face another day – like Dr. King and those who showed him the way.Gary Dorrien, “Redeeming the Soul of America,” Plough, April 11, 2018
A terrific article. It looks closely at the role of theology and what we’d probably call “Christian living” in King’s politics, and how those same forces might affect contemporary politics, from the perspective of someone who grew up white working class in Michigan.
The comments are fascinating, too.
Image: An image of intersectionality: a slightly modified version of “Urban vs Nature” by Yurii Efremov / CC BY-SA, via Wikimedia Commons