My Review of the Justice Project

Shame on me for underestimating its potential but to put it simply, The Justice  Project exceeded my expectations.    In my defense, I simply could not believe that  one book that asked such wide array of minds to confine their words in only a few  pages each could be so powerful.  Looking back on it, I approached it the way I see  many compilation cd’s.  You know what I’m talking about – those albums created for  a particular cause but are so disjointed that their best feature is that they gave a tiny  percentage of the proceeds to the cause itself.

The Justice Project is nothing like that.  I figured I would like it, but I didn’t realize  how moved I would be by so many chapters.  I know this sounds overly dramatic, but  I am not sure I could figure out which chapter I liked the least.

Similar to the Coldplay effect on music where so many bands decided to incorporate more piano and less guitar, to some, justice is the new novelty of the Christian world.  What the JP does is open the eyes of the reader that justice has always been the mandate of God and part of the scope of the Scriptures but unfortunately, some of us have missed it.

Justice has gotten a bad reputation amongst evangelicals.  Scarred by the missteps of the social justice movement (where the pendulum swung too far), the mission of God became exclusively about winning souls to heaven (the pendulum swung back too far).  In some circles, the term “justice” has gotten a bad rap as it was often modified by the word “social”. And we all know that if you are interested in social justice that you can’t be interested in the resurrection of Jesus too.  Clearly one is completely alien to the other.   This book would help alter that perspective.

If I could read it over again, I would have used this book as a devotional.  I don’t normally use daily “devotionals” and not real crazy about the connotations associated with the term but using this as a daily reading would be beneficial.  There’s a lot to consider.  Like the Hebrew and Greek word for “justice” occur over 1000 times in the Bible.  However, how many sermons have you heard on the subject of justice? I bet you have heard more sermons about sex than you have about justice. Further, I bet that you have rolled your eyes more times at Bono talking about justice than the number of times your pastor has centered a sermon around this subject.

One of the best features of the book is that it includes voices from various ethnicities and from different corners of life.  While there were some very familiar names like Tony Jones, Doug Pagitt, Lynne Hybels, Samir Selmanovic, Peggy Campolo, the Samsons, about half the names were new to me and I found myself googling them after finishing their chapters.  I especially liked the author bio on the first page of the essay as opposed to the last page.  As you may have heard by now, everything is contextual and it was great to get a hint of where the writer was coming from.  I also liked the way the five parts the book was broken into: The God of Justice, The Book of Justice, Justice in the USA, A Just World, and A Just Church.

As most of the faithful readers of this blog know by now, I direct a lot of words to the conservative evangelicals because I consider myself to be one.  To put it bluntly, if  you can define justice as part of God’s righteousness, and if we as a Church can see and treat it the way we regard evangelism and discipleship in the Kingdom, then  I believe, we would be a more complete Church.  Pick up the Justice Project, it’s excellent.


  1. Jeff Kursonis says:

    Hey Buddy, how are you! Thought I’d say hello through your blog – good reading your latest stuff!

    I think I’m going to move to Atlanta.

    I gotta read this book.


  2. Hey buddy, hope you are well.
    Yeah, I think you really would like the Justice Project.

    Atlanta huh? Well, if you live in the South, then I guess that’s a top 5 place. (Charlotte, Miami, Raleigh, Charlottesville, South Jersey ;-)

    Thanks for saying hi. Always good hearing from you.

Speak Your Mind