在我書桌上有一本題為《正義的政治》 （Just Politics，或譯《不只是政治》（台灣：道聲，2015））的書。人們看到這書時常會向我投以異樣的目光，因為我們大多數都認為「政治可以是正義的」這句話根本只是空想！比起誠實和真確性，政治的謊言和手段可是臭名遠播。有些人甚至會說：「永不要信任從政者。」
The Church as Justice Advocate
by Tony Read
I have a book on my desk entitled ‘Just Politics’. When people see it they often give me funny looks because for many of us the idea that Politics can be Just is just a ‘pipe dream’! Politics often has more of a reputation for lies and dirty tricks than for honesty and truth. Some people would even say ‘never trust a politician’.
So the idea that Christians can or should get involved in the political sphere is considered to be like trying to mix oil with water. They don’t go together and they should not go together.
The problem is that most people would assume that politics means party politics and we all know how hostile and partisan that can be. Yet there are things that we as Christians should be concerned about and which I believe we have a responsibility to advocate for in society.
The Old Testament prophets spoke directly to their political masters about issues of justice that were seriously lacking in their administration. Accumulation of wealth; land grabbing; bribery; corrupt courts; ignoring the plight of the poor; perjury; were all issues that they denounced in the strongest terms. These were all examples of an unjust society in which powerful leaders were abusing their power and neglecting their responsibility as leaders to work for justice and righteousness in society. In the OT righteousness was not just spoken about as an inward spiritual relationship with God so much as doing right things. It resulted in outward acts of righteousness. It produced what we would call to day ‘a more fair and just society’
Today we have a responsibility to speak truth to power. The appointed leaders of our society have a mandate from God to restrain evil and promote good (even though they might not recognize it as such). The church is called to speak up for those who have no voice, who are marginalized, who have been neglected, who have been victimized by unjust policies, at the same time as we are called to reach out to them with friendship, love and help.
In the Justice Track of Movement Day Hong Kong, being held for the very first time in Hong Kong on March 23 & 24, we will look at the theological roots of biblical justice and consider ways that we can encourage young people to become justice advocates in society and in their churches. Come and join us and bring your ideas.