Jesus’s practice of sowing good news to the poor and oppressed in his every waking moment was an integral part of his strategy to establish God’s kingdom of justice, a strategy brought to fruition by his courageous death and the power of his resurrection, both of which affirmed for all time the truth and transformative might of his message when it is rightly understood and practiced.
Crucifixion and resurrection is given a role in Hendricks’ assessment of Jesus’ achievement, but it’s a role that could have been more clearly articulated. After all, it is on the cross where Jesus disarms and humiliates the principalities and powers, the source of humanity’s suffering and death. More than simply affirming his message, this event ensures God’s victory over every force of oppression. Reckoning with Jesus’ revolutionary message and how it confronts the powers around us leads to Jesus’ resurrection where those powers are finally exposed as the empty deceivers they have always been.
With The Universe Bends Toward Justice Obery M. Hendricks, like others before him, has illuminated the costly way of Jesus in our world. In doing so he has invited a new generation of Christians to a discipleship marked by freedom songs, prophetic words, and liberating lives.
David Swanson is the pastor of New Community Covenant Church in Chicago’s historic Bronzeville neighborhood. He blogs regularly at http://davidswanson.wordpress.com/