March 31, 2021

Review: Why Social Justice is Not Biblical Justice by Scott David Allen


Why Social Justice Is Not Biblical Justice: An Urgent Appeal to Fellow Christians in a Time of Social CrisisWhy Social Justice Is Not Biblical Justice: An Urgent Appeal to Fellow Christians in a Time of Social Crisis by Scott David Allen
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Read this book on the recommendation of a friend. I was severely underwhelmed.

Let me begin by saying that I have a lot of sympathy with his basic premise that social justice ideology as a totalizing worldview is incoherent, dangerous, and not what we want governing our society. As Christians we should want justice, and want it defined on God's terms, not the world's.

Having said that, this book doesn't have a lot to recommend it. The explanation of Biblical justice is very thin, and basically came to a classical liberal idea of negative rights without addressing the biblical concepts of corporate responsibility and the positive responsibility of the who have to those who don't. On the flip side, I don't think he did a great job of articulating the very Social Justice mindset he was seeking to critique. I wouldn't feel comfortable handing this book to someone and suggesting that they would understand this worldview-far better to just hand them to the link to and tell them to read a half dozen articles. They'll have a better grip on what's going on.

I also was frustrated by his distortion of historical events, for example, portraying the American and English revolutions as somehow unrelated to the French revolution. The tone through the middle/latter parts of the book was pop-level apology for America/the West rather than a Biblical interaction with the prevailing cultural ideology of our day.

In all, I just don't see enough substance here to warrant your time reading it.

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About Me

Follower of Jesus. Husband of one. Father of four. Pastor at Remsen Bible Fellowship (