It is one of the most beautiful passages in the Bible. It is also one of the most difficult to comprehend.

John 15:9-17 New King James Version (NKJV)

Love and Joy Perfected

“As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. 10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.

11 “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full. 12 This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you. 17 These things I command you, that you love one another.

We are supposed to be God’s friends? Us? He’s nuts! With friends like us, why would God need enemies? What idiot would want to spend eternity with me? Nevertheless, He has promised to make us perfect and keep us with Him forever. Thus, each born again Christian stands as perfect proof of God’s grace and mercy, His willingness to forgive. Who else but God could forgive us? Even me. Eternity with God forever? Me? Why?

To love each other we must aspire to God’s grace and mercy, His willingness to forgive, but we fall so far short. So it is that when I read That’s the Heart of It… by insanitybytes22, I found myself torn.  had written an other beautiful post, but I think she had attacked the wrong target.

Yep, I’m speaking to all those “biggies” still bragging about how they have now saved the world by signing their name right beneath John MacArthur’s declaration of Anti Social Justice. It seems as if I am not a fan of this move, and feeling kind of bad for the 4000 or so pastors who have leapt forward to sign it. (from here)

Frankly, I am not a fan of being against things, but sometimes we don’t have a choice. Sometimes we have to point out what is wrong with a bad idea. Otherwise, people won’t give an attractive idea that is actually quite stupid a second thought. Remember that tree whose fruit Adam and Eve found so tempting. Don’t you sometimes wish you had been there to dissuade them. Yet I suppose it would not have done any good. They would not listen to God. Why me?

Still, we try, and friends don’t let friends do “social justice”. So I commented here, here, and here on ‘s post.

My last comment concerned an article  provided in defense, Response to “The Statement on Social Justice and the Gospel”. I don’t think the author of that response read The Statement on Social Justice & the Gospel as carefully as he should have done, but I suppose that is forgivable. The Statement on Social Justice & the Gospel is actually rather lengthy and involved. Why? “Social justice” is an ill-defined buzzword that Liberal Democrats use to provide an excuse for innumerable policies. Consider this definition.

so·cial jus·tice
noun: social justice
justice in terms of the distribution of wealth, opportunities, and privileges within a society.
“individuality gives way to the struggle for social justice”

Hence the The Statement on Social Justice & the Gospel includes:

Is The Statement on Social Justice & the Gospel worth the effort and the controversy? I don’t know, but think about that usage, “individuality gives way to the struggle for social justice”. That’s the key issue. Do you want to reduce your neighbors to cogs in a machine? Would that be just?

Consider what we call “identity politics”. Many of us get our identities wrapped up in our race, religion, sexual identity, age, economic class, disabilities, and so forth. When we don’t think we are getting the respect we think we deserve, don’t we want to demand it? And what if a politician comes along spouting that vague creed we call “social justice”? What if in the name of “social justice”, equal treatment, that glorious leader offers us a law that requires everyone to respect us and give us what we want?

ME! All of us ME’s! For the sake of diversity, why don’t we — all of us ME’s — make everyone else think the same way about ME? Why don’t we — all of us ME’s — make everyone else respect ME and give ME what I want?  That would be perfect, right? No? But that is the problem. What passes for “social justice” majoritarian tyranny, the tyranny of all of us ME’s.

Still, I am in no position to condemn anyone. Years ago I discovered a log in my own eye, Reviling Christian Fundamentalism, and I suppose there are others. All I can do is try to do what I should, strive to judge the behavior of others as I would have my own judged.



  1. I’m still in disagreement,Tom. And John MacArthur hasn’t helped one bit. He points the bible at others and declares, “Christians are the last people who should ever become offended, resentful, envious, or unforgiving. Love “does not take into account a wrong suffered,”

    Right. That is very easy to say when you are standing on the top of the food chain or perhaps even being a bad guy. Let me proceed to unjustly tax you, and then lecture you about how, “Love does not take into account a wrong suffered.”

    See, this is pure politics and context is everything.

    1. @IB

      Except for the fact you seem to have a distinct dislike John MacArthur,… well, I am somewhat puzzled. You know better than to attack the man instead of his argument. Is MacArthur wrong because he is not perfect? Of course not.

      Is someone is being taxed unjustly? Why don’t we just talk about the tax? MacArthur isn’t responsible, and he most certainly is not going to fix it.

  2. Under current practices social justice does seem like a buzzword because mercy and grace are necessary to balance the scale. But social justice could be found in facilitating basic needs for all regardless of the economy.

    1. @Human Rights Union

      What is the relationship between social justice and justice? Does one obtain social justice at the expense of justice? Do you expect government to be a font of mercy and grace?

      1. “Facilitating basic needs for all regardless of the economy” sounds laudable, awesome, in fact, but still seems unworkable from both material and psychological perspectives.

        Material: Who is in charge of redistributing everything, because people sure as hell aren’t going to give up their rightfully earned possessions themselves. If we start redistributing WRONGLY earned possessions…who determines that? And who will watch the watchers?

        Psychological: Giving the needy free stuff does nothing to actually elevate them from their poverty. We see it all the time—the wealth gets squandered and the needy are back where they started. There would need to be some strings attached.

        And again: Who will run the show?

        I’m not trying to be difficult here. These are questions I wrestle with all the time. So many diagnoses of the issue and so little prescriptions that seem like they would actually work.

        1. When people are charitable with their own money, the administrative costs are much smaller. We corrupt our government less. Charities compete. So we have a better idea of what works.

          Is there a problem? Yes. There is a perception that some people don’t contribute their fair share, whatever that is. If some don’t contribute what they should, whatever that may be, Why should we care? They are losers.

          1. Agreed—when people are charitable. The question, then, becomes how to inculcate this virtue? Because we know not everyone will be charitable. How to get ENOUGH that we don’t need governments programs is a tough nut to crack, and will require undoing decades of societal programming.

          2. @Alex

            Not the job of government to change us. All we can do is strive to be a good examples for each other.

            Instead of trying to control each other, we need to accept the fact our brothers and sisters belong to God, that He can change hearts if He so wills.

            Generally, since God does what He does His own way and on His own timetable, we get impatient. We don’t even know what He is doing. Just the same, whenever we pick some monarch to lead us and form us to his will has the result ever been desirable?

          3. Absolutely not the job of the government to change us, because it can’t, not truly. My point is that government is the vehicle through which 100% of those advocating for social justice propose for making broad reforms, yet they so seldom seem to think this through.

            These are also the same people who systematically attempt to destroy Christianity and remove it from any such decision making, or even place in the discussion. What a coincidence.

      2. @Citizen Tom
        The relationship between social justice and justice is macro and micro. But social justice is an empty buzzword with little relevance to what it attempts to address and is a misleading term. What social justice is actually attempting to address are human rights to basic needs. When citizen’s basic needs are fulfilled in a society the people of that society will have “justice” and there will be “social justice”. On the micro scale, Justice demands the mercy and grace of the individual to be just because there does not exist a universal scale of redemption. And at this point the governing body, the judicial system, sets the standard for acceptable retribution.

        1. @Human Rights Union

          The judicial system, the governing body, sets standard for acceptable retribution? Retribution? Well, that is sort of what has happened, but it isn’t suppose to work that way.

          I think you meant to say redistribution, but in practice redistributing the wealth tends to have more to do with covetousness and revenge. Why? Look at the tenth commandment. Does envy truly require an explanation?

          Government is justice, equality before the law, not equality of outcome. Even if redistributing the wealth were ethical, we cannot trust our leaders to do it right (see Alex’s comment). We cannot trust the same people who are suppose to protect our property rights to redistribute the wealth too. Creates a huge conflict of interest.

          For the sake of votes, political power, and campaign donations, politicians will abuse the power. The temptations involved corrupt both our leaders (who tend towards demagoguery) and voters wanting handouts.

  3. Brother, very well said. There is much to said the Justice Jesus brings us.

    John MacArthur has some very relevant points to make. I don’t have to agree with everything he says to agree with most of it. Some are rejecting this based on one thing they disagree with.

    I think that is dangerous but I could be wrong.

    In his latest blog on the topic, he asserts:

    “Christians are the last people who should ever become offended, resentful, envious, or unforgiving. Love “does not take into account a wrong suffered” (1 Corinthians 13:5). The mark of a Christian is turning the other cheek, loving our enemies, praying for those who mistreat us. Christ is the example whose steps we are to follow: “While being reviled, He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously” (1 Peter 2:23).

    “Hatred, envy, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, hostility, divisiveness, bitterness, pride, selfishness, hard feelings, vindictiveness—and all similar attitudes of resentment—are the self-destructive works of the flesh.

    “The beneficial fruit the Spirit produces are the exact opposite attitudes: “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.” The NIV translates 1 Corinthians 13:5 this way: “[Love] keeps no record of wrongs.”

    “Such qualities, frankly, are in short supply in the rhetoric of those advocating for social justice.”

    Thanks for speaking the truth!

  4. The Christian Bible Fundamentalism statement, in my opinion, is a vanity statement.

    To sign a statement that we humans know for certain any written words by man are the same or equal to God’s wisdom in foolish, in my opinion.

    As for social justice, there never has been a utopia of social justice in history. Mainly because of the vanity of men.

    As for love, without wisdom, love is just a word, in my opinion.

    The more I read the Bible, and compare it to the news, the more I believe that I know nothing at all in comparison to our Creator.

    Regards and good will blogging.

    1. @Scatterwisdom

      Agree with you on social justice. Not quite following you with respect to your first paragraphs. What are you calling the Christian Bible Fundamentalism statement?

      1. My first two paragraphs are my personal opinions about my concerns of Bible fundamentalists which the declaration seems to defend, in my opinion.

        There are many verses in the Bible that the writers portend to know what God did or thought.

        No one other than Moses ever saw God, yet the writers make statements that they seem to know what God decided to do to punish or reward humans.

        Fundamentalists tend to become overbearing in there judgments of others as a result and may in some instances result in people being turned off from religion instead of guidance from the good news message of the Bible. in my opinion..

        Again, my opinion, about a controversial subject.

        Regards and good will blogging.

        1. @Scatterwisdom

          We all have our prejudices. 😞

          Where did the term Fundamentalism come from? It was a reaction to Christians who had started interpreting the Bible so liberally they were no longer adhering to the fundamentals of the Christian faith.

          You believe the Apostle’s Creed? In the minds of those who don’t believe the Bible is the Word of God, you are a Fundamentalist.

          Of course, as a Fundamentalist you must be arrogant. Because you believe the Bible, you believe Jesus is God, that He is the only way to salvation. The only Way. How arrogant!

          Please remember Liberals own the mass media. The feud between Conservative and Liberal Christians goes back at least to the beginning of the last century. Therefore, Liberals have had plenty of time to mischaracterize Fundamentalism. Since that is how they “win” arguments, they have mischaracterized Fundamentalism.

          1. @Scatterwisdom

            What makes you think John MacArthur & Company interpret the Bible anymore literally than you, especially with regard to the topic of social justice?

            When we discuss an idea, a belief, do we judge a person or the idea? If I believe a bad idea — it’s okay to steal from outsiders — doesn’t the Bible call that wrong? Do we judge our children when we tell them not to steal?

          2. I admit some of my ideas and opinions of others are neither the best judgement or wise in the eyes of everyone…… to interpret such a vast area of subjects in the Bible.

            i try to clarify my statements as opinions rather than a judgement that only God knows and will judge for certain, …. again in e, in my opinion.

            When it comes to the telling others including my children not to steal, the Ten Commandments are simple commands. to understand and even recommended by King Solomon to follow to make everyone lives more peaceful, wise, and enjoyable. in our short life spans.

            Social Justice are man’s opinions and rule. God does not abide by man’s rules, in my opinion. The Bible gives plenty of advice to lead to Social Justice.according to His rules.

            But as you know, not a lot of people now a days read the Bible. or when they do, often times misinterpret the meanings and give wrong advice or judgement.

            Regards and good will blogging.

      1. As a linguist myself in the past, Korean, German and Spanish with my own English, I understand. Didn’t really answer my question though.
        Do we have definition of social justice that is agreed on generally?

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