There has been some discussion lately, actually it’s an old discussion about the meaning of “missional.” Is the focus of being missional about social justice? Or is it about salvation? The answer is YES. God is interested in both. I believe salvation is primary. Without salvation of individuals you will not ever really succeed on the social justice side. It can’t happen without Jesus and Jesus works primarily through his people. Remember, true justice is established as the Kingdom of God is established in the Earth and Jesus told us the Kingdom does not come with observation but is within you. Without individual hearts being changed or converted, there is no justice.
So does that mean we forget about justice. Absolutely not. When people are dying because they have no food or water, I believe Jesus weeps. When women and children are forced into slavery or the sex trade, I believe Jesus weeps. But it also is of little value to help their temporary situations on Earth if they are not given the opportunity to know about Jesus and lose their soul. What does it profit a man to gain the whole world and lose his soul?
The question is not which should we be involved in. I believe that God wants to save. I also believe God wants to see the oppressed and the hurting comforted and helped. But it’s not up to us to choose what actions to take. I believe we have been ineffective in reaching the lost and helping set captives free because we have been involved in trying to figure it out ourselves.
I believe that Jesus set the example. He did what he saw the Father doing and he said what he heard the Father saying. Jesus didn’t do anything on his own. I don’t believe we should be doing things because it’s a good idea or we think that’s what God wants. We need to really seek him and ask him. God is faithful to let us know what he wants us to do. It is not about us standing in our own righteousness, but standing in his, which is through obedience to his will.