Keeping in mind the recent interview of David Swartz and his research on the evangelical left, Kevin DeYoung’s new series on social justice, and the questions about how involved churches should be in mercy/justice ministries, I wanted to highlight a brand-new book on the horizon.  Next month, Baker Books is releasing The Justice Project, the second book in their emersion series.  Edited by Brian McLaren, Elisa Padilla, and Ashley Bunting Seeber, Justice Project is a 288-page, multinational and multi-generational examination of the connections between the gospel and social justice.  Now, the first thing some who swim in my end of the theological pool may say is, hmmm, McLaren’s the editor, Doug Pagitt’s written one of the chapters, and ohh, there’s a couple of Campolos there too, so this is probably isn’t a very theologically sound book.  I’m not a McLaren fan, and I already know that I’m not going to agree completely with every theological point made in this book, yet at the same time, I’ve looked over the chapter headings, read the first couple of chapters and I have to say — this has the making of a controversial yet key book.    

The Justice Project is divided into five sections.  The sections tackle, respectively, (1) the Triune God and justice, including a discussion by Peter Goodwin Heltzel on the Holy Spirit’s role; (2) understanding what Scripture has to tell us about justice, with a chapter by Jeremy Del Rio particularly devoted to the reading of the major and minor prophets in their socio-political context; (3) ethnic and ideological politics in the United States; (4) a look at different “environments” (rural, urban, suburban, developing world) and how Christians might pursue justice in them, as well as some discussion about decolonization and wealth distribution; and lastly (5) the church, including ways in which Christian communities can think and practice justice.