By Walter Houston
Contending for Justice analyses texts on social justice within the outdated Testament and argues that regardless of their ideological personality they might nonetheless help in shaping a Christian theological method of social and international injustice. The e-book argues at the one hand classification curiosity is inquisitive about all texts near to social justice, and at the different that, that the very curiosity calls for that they need to attract the broadest attainable public through the use of often authorised moral and theological rules.
Four components are set out in a hermeneutical notion: texts will be understood as rhetoric in genuine social events, as ideology holding a social place, as defining well-known moral values, and theologically as having a severe and positive strength for the interpreter's personal state of affairs. A moment bankruptcy makes an attempt to comic strip the social stipulations within which such texts have been shaped. The hermeneutical scheme is then utilized, yet no longer rigidly, to a variety of texts: prophetic denunciations of oppression, texts in a number of genres defining the features of the simply person, texts within the Psalms and Isaiah defining the obligation of the king to guard the bad, visions of a simply neighborhood within the prophets, phrases of Torah geared toward keeping the indebted terrible and restoring an self sustaining peasantry, and assertions of the justice of God. The ebook concludes with short reflections at the worth of the previous testomony as a source within the fight for justice.
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Additional info for Contending for Justice: Ideologies and Theologies of Social Justice in the Old Testament
2 . 13 T h e re a re n o suf ficient differences in th e size a n d q u a lity o f h o u se s e ith e r betw een houses in th e sa m e village o r betw een differen t sites to su g g est a n y se rio u s social stra tific a tio n w ith in th e r u ra l co m m u n ity . In sta lla tio n s su c h a s th e village b o u n d a r y w all, th resh in g floor, g ra in silos a n d oil p resses d o n o t b elong to in d iv id u a l houses, b u t a p p e a r to have been m a in ta in e d co -o p erativ ely by th e com m unity.
2 . T h e A n c ie n t S o c ia l C o n tex t 19 social stra tific a tio n a n d , in th e texts, criticism o f th e rela tio n s betw een rich a n d p o o r. A s fa r a s th e texts a re c o n c e rn e d , th e ea rliest d a ta b le references a re in w ritin g s p re se n te d as h av in g o rig in a te d w ith p ro p h e ts— A m o s. 2 S im ila r so cial te n sio n s a re ev id en ced rep eated ly in lite ra tu re o f th e succccd in g centuries. T ex ts fro m S eco n d T em p le J u d a h w itness to e x a c e rb a te d o p p re ssio n .
In A fg h a n ista n , th e d ecree raised g reat resen t m e n t, a n d p la y ed a significant p a r t in th e fa ilu re o f th e rev o lu tio n there, w ith effects th a t e n d u re to th is day. W hy? B ecause in th e trib a l so ciety o f A fg h a n ista n , p e a s a n ts d id n o t perceive th e ir la n d lo rd s as ex p lo ite rs b u t as p ro te c to rs: th e ir re n t w as rec k o n ed to be fa ir ex c h an g e fo r a g u a ra n te e o f p ro te c tio n fro m b a n d its o r rival w arlo rd s, a n d fo r h elp in b ad tim es.