A religion that professes a concern for the souls of men and is not equally concerned about the slum that damn them, the economic conditions that strangle them, and the social conditions that cripple them, is a spiritually dying religion.I believe this is a truth very much in line with Scripture. James tackles the issue of, essentially, what should be a litmus test for our faith:
Martin Luther King Jr. Strength to Love, 1963
James 2:14-18 What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, "Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.And early in James 1, in his call for the believers to take action:
But someone will say, "You have faith; I have deeds." Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by what I do.
27 Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.Wow! So much emphasis, in Christian circles, is put on living a moral life, but for James, that should follow suit in our fight against social injustice. In my experience, this works. I cannot help but become keenly aware of my immoral actions as the love of Jesus flows out of my life.
Bono's words, "True religion will not let us fall asleep in the comfort of our freedom", should ring ever louder in the ears of Christians living in America.
Are you living a life of a dead religion?
Back to preparing my speech on MLK Jr.