Humanity longs for justice. Humanity longs for Righteousness and Goodness. Humanity longs for reconciliation. Only Christ’s death on the cross offers enough to pay humanities insurmountable debt of injustice. Only Christ can give us a mutual foundation to stand on. Only Christ can transform our hearts toward each other.
As believers in Christ, we can’t transform the human heart, we can’t afford the debt that justice is entitled to fulfill. We don’t even have the power or the right to truly be reconciled with each other. A stark reality of human existence is that sometimes an apology is not good enough to make things right. Only God and His choice to work through Christ has the power to make things right.
So what can we as followers of Christ do then…If I understood Dr. Perkins correctly, our first role in fulfilling Godly justice is to fullfil our role as ambassadors of Christ. As ambassadors of Christ, we are entrusted with the ministry of reconciliation. There is no higher calling than to help people in their journey toward reconciliation with God. (2 Corinthians 5).
The most amazing thing about learning this from Dr. Perkins was that if there is anyone who is entitled to justice, he is. Beaten and tortured within an inch of his life several times, experiencing the death of his brother, experiencing the death of his son. Through all that he has gone through, Dr. Perkins chose to believe in the transforming power of Christ. His faithfulness to Christ has allowed God to bear a tremendous amount of fruit through him. People who were once in brutal opposition to Dr. Perkins like Thomas A. Tarrants III, later formed deep bonds though Christ. Communities have been transformed through his passionate commitment to bring credibility to the love of Christ through holistic, “on-location” ministry where he physically lived out God’s great commission in Matthew 28:18-20.
Many of us have heard the message of holistic ministry. Many of us have heard the gospel preached as the hope of the world. Here’s the deal. Dr. John Perkins does not walk on water. I don’t want to build him up into something he is not. He is just a sinner with flaws like the rest of us. However, after knowing his story and looking into his eyes and listening to him proclaim the love of Christ for all people, I can’t help but be overwhelmed by the thought, this is how God wants all of us to be. What a legacy. What an example of Christ for the world to emulate. What a life, well lived.
I am sure that Dr. Perkins doesn’t remember me or our brief time together several years ago. I only mention this because I don’t want anyone to think I have any special connection to this great man. May this post simply be a testimony to how the faithfulness of one man can rock the world for Christ.
The Amazing Journey of John Perkins – A great post on the life of Dr. Perkins –
Book – He’s my Brother – Former Racial Foes Offer Strategy for Reconciliation
John Perkins (Author), Thomas A. Tarrants (Author), David Wimbish (Author)
While Dr. Perkins centered on the transforming power of Christ and God word through the Bible and through Discipleship He also knows that caring for the physical needs of people is required for ministry to be fully effective. I’ll be writing about what I have learned from Dr. Perkins regarding his views on “Godly Justice” in my next post…