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One of the massive 'gaps' throughout the 20th century was created by various historic waves which historians like Ralph Winter and many others have well articulated. But, for those of us, largely leading the way in what was dominated by Western nations until about a half-century ago, we, the people of the Word, or a conser-vative branch of Christendom/Protestantism, were living out the reality of a highly spiritualized faith, and promoting it worldwide. Part of this was a reaction to what was then called a "social gospel," but which we perceived to be hands and no heart. We saw it as a physically, socially, worldly, not spiritually shaped gospel. It was changing, it seemed, everything but the fallen and sinful human heart. Whether that was social action, changing governments, or even simply standing up for the rights of the poor, we saw it as squandering or essentially losing the deeper questions of "making the heart right with God." This meant that we ended up stressing the spiritual for so long that we saw all other moves as essentially moving the furniture on a sinking Titanic. Those other noble causes could be done by the world so we, conversely, needed to invest in people's eternal destination--not just feed their hungry bodies.

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Thankfully, that history is not the whole story, and in this new millennium, that divide has been largely undone, so today, our faith and our mission is much more wholistic/holistic and we understand, as we always should have, that we are always whole beings and that even our future in the coming life will not simply be spiritual beings strumming symbolic harps up in heaven. 

As we examine Scripture, the first three quarters of our text, the Old Covenant, will indeed come to life, as Landa Cope found out so poignantly (see her book in my resource library), as God is invariably calling upon his people, not only to end their immorality or idolatry but also their injustice. 

When we move toward an obedient nations posture, clearly we must have a better-trained eye to see each place, in our larger societies, in which there are almost endless ways and means to address systemic as well as very simple forms of injustice--at all levels and in all arenas of life. And while we will never see the issues of justice eclipse the spiritual issues of blindness to the glory of God in the face of Christ, we also see them as increasingly one and the same task--even as Christ did not parse his ministry into blocs of prioritization (i.e. "This year--or today--I'll heal the sick; next year I'll address injustice, or deal with the demonic, and then I'll preach eternal saving of souls").

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