Social Salve

Our world is messed up.  There are outrageous examples and instances of injustice occuring 'round-the-clock wherever we turn.  Our nightly news quickly delivers the stories of the weak and helpless who are killed, robbed, beaten, denied, abandoned, ignored, and ridiculed.  There are many wounds left untreated that our society displays from day to day.  These wounds are ugly.  There are infected because of lack of proper care and continued contamination.

In light of this, there needs to be social doctors and nurses who are willing to dress the wounds of the poor, the sick, the abandoned, the oppressed, and the helpless.  These wounds are gross.  They are repulsive.  Those who are meant to dress these wounds cannot help but face them, smell them, maybe even touch them in order to properly bring healing and restoration.

Social salve:  the dressing for the wounds of the social outcast.

In the account of Jesus' life, these words were spoken by Jesus near the beginning of His work.

 "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."

These words were first spoken by Isaiah, and later adopted by Jesus as His own.  Those who were listening to Jesus speak these words were amazed and enamoured with His bold, new mission statement.

Jesus announced His priorities and His vision.  He identified the authority and the power that would propel His work.

The crowds of people knew that there were others among them in their cities who were blind, oppressed, poor, captive, and hungry.  There seemed, now, to be One who would bring hope for these social ills with authority.

As followers of Christ, He has given us the equipment, the knowledge, and the motivation to bring a social salve.

There comes with this charge a reminder that those who live to advance and promote the Kingdom of God will face opposition.  Jesus could have started the most effective non-profit organization in His time.  However, when He identified Himself as the Son of God and gave the credit to God for His work, His life was threatened and eventually taken from Him.

The social salve of the Gospel brings change and healing, but it's eternal effectiveness is found in the life of Jesus.

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