Sunday, 6 June 2010

Hope for Justice

Hubs and I attended a Hope for Justice event 'The Stand' in Manchester on Friday night. The cause is to end human trafficking. It was wonderful, the Name of Jesus was praised and proclaimed.

The focus of the night was Jesus' love for the oppressed. The Hope for Justice site quotes:
‘He will rescue them from oppression and violence for precious is their blood in his sight.’ Psalm 72:14

Our Aims:

Rescue

Rescue trafficked people; restore lives through rehabilitation and pursue justice by prosecuting those responsible.
Inspire

Raise awareness and inspire a generation to get involved in the fight against human trafficking.
Equip

Equip others to practically make a difference and take action against it.


This is a worthy cause. Did you know that there are 27 million slaves worldwide [UNICEF]? Hope for Justice concentrated mostly on the night into the awful s*xual exploitation of women and children. The site quotes:

  • 1.2 million children are trafficked every year, two every minute
  • The average age of a trafficking victim is just 14 years
  • $9.5 billion is made through human trafficking each year
  • The UN estimates that 80% of people trafficked are taken for s*xual exploitation.

Stories were told of children as young as three sold into such slavery. It is sick and so upsetting.

One of the speakers on the night was Tony Campolo, he told one of his famous stories and spoke of his passion for those who live in poverty and who are trapped by slavery. But the thing that moved me the most was his prayer at the end. "We are shocked by the figures of 27 million in slavery today, the most ever in history, but God knows each one by name." I could weep right now to think of that. How the Father heart of God is broken. I cannot imagine the pain of knowing that millions of His children are lost and in such suffering because of sin and oppression. How He longs to set them free.

Jesus' was sent to earth to break the bonds of slavery, the bond of slavery to sin by His death on the cross and His offer of eternal life, but He also stated:

"Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cummin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practised the latter, without neglecting the former. You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel." Matthew 23:23-24

God requires us to give our lives to Him indeed to worship Him and forever show our thanks for the work of the cross; but sacrificial love also means that we will offer help to those who need it - both practical AND spiritual. Yes our focus must be on the eternal soul, but our love for others in Jesus must prompt us to reach out a helping hand to those in need.

What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, "Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. James 2:14-17

"And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones because he is my disciple, I tell you the truth, he will certainly not lose his reward." Matthew 10:42

3 comments:

  1. So true. Our neighbours' 15 year old daughter spent half term in Bulgaria with a few other teens and young adults from their church youth group, working with gypsy street children. They were able to give them food, clothing and love. J said some of the kids hadn't eaten for two days because wet weather meant it wasn't possible to scavenge in the rubbish bins :(.

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  2. Thank you so much for this really challenging post. I knew TC was in Manchester but couldn't get to hear him, so very grateful for your post.
    We complain in the UK about the 'struggles' of the recssion - but really we have no idea - our borthers and sisters are REALLY suffering.

    blessings x

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  3. I wish people would all get involved in some way even if it is just supporting an organization that does something about it...we support IJM -

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