Transforming the World? The Gospel and Social Responsibility (3)

A third ‘quotable quote’ from this book, Transforming the World?: the Gospel and Social Responsibility, edited by Dewi Hughes and Jamie Grant.

I’m trying to prepare a series of 10 guest posts or so for Jesus Creed in June. This is the conclusion of a chapter that there won’t be room to discuss there, by Howard Marshall called ‘Luke’s “Social” Gospel: the social theology of Luke-Acts’.

It highlights the impossibility of ‘disentangling’ the gospel from its social implications.

Luke has a theology of a God who is generous and compassionate and condemns the way in which the rich make themselves rich at the expense of the poor. His Son Jesus was conspicuously  poor and called his disciples to beware of wealth and its temptations, and to practise giving, regarding their property and income as being held in trust for the good of others as well as themselves. To this end the early Christians encouraged charity so that the church was a microcosm of a society in which all shared together, the rich helping the poor so that poverty was eradicated. The faithful proclamation of the gospel includes its element of judgment on the selfish rich and the call to share with the needy. It also includes the expression of God’s compassion in care of the sick and disabled and the calling of rulers and ‘the mighty’ to practise righteousness (which includes compassion). (emphasis added)

Comments, as ever, welcome.

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