If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?
James 2:16 (NIV)
Good. It’s what we are supposed to be about. James 2:16 presupposes such by asking “what good is it?”. Just how good are we?
It’s easy to mistake “not being bad” for “being good”. The two are related but distinctly different. Most who call themselves Christians avoid being intentionally bad. We don’t do this or that, and that generally makes us feel better about ourselves than some of the people who do this or that. But do we intentionally do good? The verdict is still out on that one.
Martin Luther King, Jr. once said: “”He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it.” We often avoid doing good driven by the terrible “i”s – ignorance, indifference, or intimidation. All three of those have roots in being too preoccupied with the big “I” and being driven by self-interest. MLK, Jr. also once said: “The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: ‘If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?’ But … the good Samaritan reversed the question: ‘If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?'”
What will happen if we don’t do good? Let’s pursue the Path to Perfect Peace and learn to Act with Justice.
This is the fourth in the “Act with Justice” series of blog posts.