Christian Virtue Strengthens the Social Justice Cause

Liberation from injustice starts with obedience to God and his moral order.

In the early 1980s, Indian guru Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh established a commune called Rajneeshpuram and embarked on a search for utopia in the wilderness of Wasco County, Oregon. (The Netflix documentary Wild Wild Country recounts the story.) The cult sought to create the perfect city by deconstructing the social norms and religious strictures that in their view suppress one’s true self.

Rajneesh taught that free love and dynamic meditation were the key to liberating the individual and reaching “superconsciousness.” The group bought 80,000 acres and indulged all their wildest inclinations in orgy-style meditation sessions. They wanted a perfectly compassionate and just community, where no one’s self-expression would be restricted.

But before long, the brokenness of human nature brought them back to reality. When the commune received political pushback from other residents in the area, they became anything but compassionate. In the name of free love and self-expression, they attempted murder and committed fraud and bioterrorism to get their way. They also abused each other and exploited the homeless. Their attempt to completely rid themselves of all constraints left them defenseless against their own internal evils.

I see this dynamic in the public square today. Contemporary concepts of compassion and justice that ignore human brokenness and individual sin can only lead to the same desolate destination. When those ideas involve pretending men can be pregnant or arguing that the traditional family is a tool of the oppressor, we’re not progressing. We’re descending away from truth. If we want to achieve justice, we first have to understand human nature. And to understand human nature, we have …

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