Saturday 1 September 2012

The Importance of Liberation Theology

Liberation theology is the tool for unlocking the potential of the church. When those of us who study scripture wake up to the simplicity of Jesus' teaching then it is our duty is to live them out with our lives. Jesus came to preach the gospel, the good news of God, and it was good news to the poor. It could not be any simpler, if we are to know God, then we are to do his will. He asks us to love our neighbour as ourselves, to pour out love on everyone. We are asked to be creatures of forgiveness and compassion, even to the point of loving our enemies.

The path to this point of enlightenment is one of prayerful simplicity, economic justice, radical non-violence, and co-existence with all of God's creation.  Though many 'theologies' consider parts of these solutions in their deliberations, it is liberation theology which is at the cutting edge of putting all this into practice.

Whenever I am teaching students of theology and those who are studying for some form of ministry, I am always struck by how many of them are instinctively living out this theology of liberation - working with the homeless, the poor or struggling for fairtrade or tax justice. Most of them are so relieved when they realise that they are already doing theology! They have been taught that theology is almost separate to their everyday lives and struggles, but the opposite is true. God is wrapped up in the contexts of our lives.

God is entwined into our world, and we need our theology to be as liberating as the teachings and life of his son Jesus Christ if it is to be worthy of God.

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