A Community of Misfits on a Mission

Shalom Justice

“Purposefully seeking the renewal of our city,” Roots’ third mission priority, requires us to have a unified vision of justice. Justice, as we have learned from Dr. Cornel West, is “what love looks like in public.” So, this week, we are looking at the big picture of justice in the biblical narrative. Like the picture on the puzzle box, if we are to seek justice, we need to know what the end goal we’re working toward looks like. The Bible’s vision of ultimate justice can be encapsulated in a Hebrew word: Shalom. Often translated “peace,” shalom is a rich and expansive concept. It speaks of wholeness, harmony, flourishing—a society in which people are rightly-related to one another and to God. From the Genesis creation account, on through the vision of the Hebrew prophets (e.g. Isaiah and Jeremiah), to the messianic mission of Jesus (cf. Luke 4), and to the glimpse of God’s future for the world (cf. Rev. 21), we see that God’s vision of justice is shalom. This must also be our vision of justice as we purposefully seek the renewal of our city.