“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
Jesus speaks the words (above) to lead off his first sermon – and Jesus says that he fulfills them. This is what it looks like for the Son of God, being fully human, to love his neighbor. So, as apprentices to Jesus, we must also seek this for others, to “love our neighbors as ourselves.”
Just as God sends his gifts of sun and rain on the good and evil alike, Jesus invites us to live a life of blessing for others in every part of everyday life: physical life, emotional life, relational life, and spiritual life. Following Jesus in word and deed should bring good news for the (physically and spiritually) poor, proclaim liberty to the (physical and spiritual) captives, sight to the (physically and spiritually) blind, and freedom for the (physically and spiritually) oppressed as we take every opportunity to proclaim the Lord’s favor!
And…like everything in life, seeking justice is a process. Jesus says his Kingdom is like a tree that grows from a small seed, but that eventually grows so big that birds can build their nests in it, and other animals (and people!) can eat from and enjoy it. That takes time.
Here are some basic resources for all of us – for ourselves, or perhaps to share in our conversations with others:
Open a bible – any translation is fine.
Another video, focused on the American experience, by a thoughtful Christian:
A helpful short article, if you’re more the reading type:
A series of talks, marking 50 years since MLK’s assassination: https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/conference/mlk50/