Part One: From Oppressed to Oppressors
In the first part of the book Bell establishes God’s care for the oppressed by walking through the story of Israel from Cain to Solomon. He summarizes that theme by saying:
“God always hears the cry of the oppressed.
God cares about human suffering and the conditions that cause it.
God is searching for a body, a community of people to care for the things God cares about.
God gives power and blessing so that justice and righteousness will be upheld for those who are denied them.
This is what God is like. This is what God is about. This is who God is.
To forget this, to fail to hear the cry, to preserve prosperity at the expense of the powerless, is to miss what God has in mind.”
When I give those words time to sink in, they hurt. No they don’t just hurt, they make me want to give up. I see all the ways I have failed in doing the things God has called his people to do. When what I am doing has zero to do with what God cares about, it matters ZERO.