Date of Award

2012

Document Type

Thesis

First Advisor

Dr. Doug Nykolaishen

Second Advisor

Dr. J. Daniel Hays

Third Advisor

Dr. Tully Borland

Abstract

In recent months, the campaign "Kony 2012" has captured the focus of millions across the globe. Using social media and an immensely popular YouTube clip, the creators of this campaign are seeking to raise awareness about alleged social injustices committed by Joseph Kony in West Africa. The fact that this campaign, among numerous other campaigns that seek to raise awareness about or to fight some form of injustice, became popular in such a short period of time illustrates the growing interest of millions of people, specifically contemporary westerners, in matters of social injustice and oppression. This growing interest in the issue of social justice has led many among the Christian community to scour the pages of Scripture in order to discover what the Bible says about injustice and how the people of God are to handle these issues.

Though the Bible is clear in its demands against injustice, the issues and themes it raises are numerous, and the task of developing a complete Biblical theology of social justice is an immense undertaking. This paper seeks to focus on one particular theme within the Bible discussion of social justice: the year of Jubilee, and its development through three critical texts: Leviticus 25, Isaiah 61, and Luke 4:14-30. The study of each text will begin with an exegesis of the text, followed, except in the case of Leviticus, by an examination of how each text develops the earlier text or texts with respect to the theme of Jubilee, and will conclude with a summary of what each text teachers about social justice. In the end, the goal of this study is to determine principles for how the people of God are to implement social justice.

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