Advocates Promote Justice-Centered Gospel With 'The Jesus Agenda'

With the recent release of "The Jesus Agenda," a new conversation is emerging focused on how to provide justice to those most affected by the ills of poverty during evangelization campaigns around the world.

The 9-part DVD series is challenging church leaders around the globe to take action and be the living embodiment of the gospel by encouraging Christians to rethink their approach regarding justice and the poor throughout the globe.

The DVD series, "The Jesus Agenda," was created to inspire Christians around the world to become engaged in helping fight injustice and poverty. It also highlights that these actions were central to the teaching of Jesus Christ.

"Somehow we came up with the idea that holiness, righteousness and justice are three entirely different things but that's a terrible misrepresentation of the truth. Justice is like a river flowing from the very character of God reaching to my personal sin and even to our institutional sinfulness," Joel Edwards, who help produce the DVD series, previously said.

Edwards is the international director of Micah Challenge, a new initiative dedicated to eradicating global poverty by 2015 and completing the Millennium Development Goals. The Millennium Development Goals were created in 2000 when 189 countries signed a declaration to halve global poverty by 2015.

In addition to that promise, those countries also collectively pledged their support in pursuit of the Millennium Development Goals, which are: the eradication of extreme hunger and poverty, universal primary education, promotion of gender equality, reduction of child mortality, improve maternal health, combating HIV/AIDS, environmental sustainability and a global partnership for development.

One of the central messages put forth by "The Jesus Agenda" is concerned with how justice is used in spreading the word of Jesus Christ which is centered at the vortex of evangelism and discipleship.

"If you read the Gospels, justice has a huge part to play … when you look at Jesus' message it was words and actions. And social action includes both the looking after the victims of injustice- poverty, homelessness, inequality- but also an attempt to do something about the structures that cause injustice," Rev. Nicky Gumbel, founder of ALPHA, said during an interview.

Those "structures that cause injustice" should be the main focal point of the church, Edwards argued.

"Jesus is concerned about justice and Luke 4 clearly shows that. The global church could have a massive effect if it took up the cause of Christ as He preached and demonstrated in Luke 4 … justice, as much as justification, should be central to our good news to the world," Edwards said.