As Christians, we are called to civic and community engagement. We have a duty to impact culture in a manner that reflects the truth (&) love of Jesus Christ. This commission includes participation in the political arena, wherein actions or inaction can have a profound effect on all aspects of society. Life, freedom and the general well-being of all citizens can be significantly enhanced or diminished by political dynamics.
Urban Christians have a unique and powerful sociopolitical perspective that is not fully represented by either of the two predominant political ideologies. It is a Gospel-centered worldview that is committed to redemptive justice (&) values-based policy. However, we have allowed the urban political class to abandon the latter.
A lack of organization and a poorly maintained platform has left us in a situation where we are exploited for votes, but command little policy influence. Urban Christians must find innovative ways to be critical, yet constructive participants in the marketplace of ideas. We must rebuild our sociopolitical platform and infrastructure, while demonstrating that our faith is more important than our politics.
We do not have the luxury of either focusing on social justice or values-based issues; both affect the foundation of our communities and are inseparably tied together. A new generation of urban Christians must address today’s dilemmas with courage, kindness and an unshakeable faith. We must speak truth with compassion (&) conviction. We must echo the good news in prayer and public witness for the common good.
Redemptive Justice is justice which has its ends in reconciliation, peace, and flourishing for all parties. The "redemption" is not the spiritual redemption which only Christ could achieve on the Cross, but it does take Christ's sacrifice as its model of self-giving love of neighbor. This understanding of justice differs from the view which says that justice is the overthrowing of all powers or the leveling of all positions. Rather, it acknowledges that power can be used for good or evil. Just as the Roman authorities used their powers to crucify Christ, but Christ used His power to heal, teach, and lead. Redemptive Justice challenges corrupt use of power and calls all people to use the power God has given them stewardship over for good.
Classic Values are timeless moral codes and beliefs transferred through religious teaching, family, culture and community that have proven to be irreplaceable.