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S is for Social Justice The Language of Today’s Cultural “Revolution”
By Mary Danielsen
In Revelation 3:14-22, we are introduced to the last days church of Laodicea, a lukewarm self-serving congregation that seems to have the most to lose by ignoring God’s instruction. But it’s what that name reveals that is so profound—a deep level of apostasy and a coming marriage of religion and politics that will blend in seamlessly with the agenda of Antichrist. “Laodicea” means “justice of the people.” As the “social-justice gospel” threatens to overtake the professing church today, the church of “wokeness” is more and more asleep in the light and ignoring the Lord’s admonitions to stay awake lest she be overtaken with the world in a flood of lawlessness and judgment.
Biblical definitions are an important part of rightly dividing and understanding the Word, but there is also a great benefit in pulling the curtain back on the things the world lusts after; and in this day of addictive social media, keeping up with the jargon of mass movements can help equip our discernment. That, in turn, will help us to explain the origins and goals of such movements to friends and family who may be caught up in round-the-clock politics. We are not to be ignorant of the wiles of the devil (2 Corinthians 2:11).
I’m not sure when the suffix “-babble” came into common usage, but the origins of the word are quite interesting. In the 16th century, it meant “idle talk,” but then by the 17th century, the common definition meant “inarticulate speech”—“bibble babble.” Baby talk, basically. In this age of media, “babble” became popular as a suffix to alert the listener that something unintelligible was being foisted upon him, and it carried with it the idea that very few will understand what is about to be said; but if you do understand it, you are a step ahead of some imagined curve. For instance, “techno-babble” terms are used in sci-fi scripts to sound futuristic and (theoretically) technologically advanced. “Psycho-babble,” a newer term to the lexicon, uses the jargon or buzzwords of the self-help industry to give the impression that whatever is being defined is scientifically plausible and diagnostically helpful. Those using these terms with confidence like to give the impression of having a deeper knowledge via special code that puts them on the cutting edge of cultural happenings.
“Social”-babble (my term) is a body of jargon that reflects an advancing tidal wave of change that will no doubt affect the lives of everyone in its path. As we careen toward a global everything and an accompanying Marxist-style tyranny, it is important to expose the cunning lies and deep deception that will ensnare billions of souls through psychological warfare, economic disaster, and subservience to The State, which will occur through the planned destruction of our culture and the forced religion of political correctness. Through this transformation, Earth-dwellers will ultimately come face to face with a brutal dictatorship that will, according to prophecy, be the last of its kind before Christ returns to judge and rule.
In the same vein, the word “jargon” is worth defining as well. Jargon, according to The Oxford Dictionary, refers to special words or expressions used by a particular profession or group that are difficult for others to understand. It is a verbal shorthand, so to speak, traditionally used within areas of expertise to communicate with those on the same level, professionally speaking. But in a world of eight billion people, it would seem that the goal of jargon, by today’s definition, is to confuse, lecture, and often to alienate and correct. The reasons people use cultural jargon might be to sound important, to hide or spin a situation, manipulate an outcome, or simply to signal agreement with a political movement.
The truth is, the real meaning of a jargon-related term is often lost because of a lack of adequate translation. New terms spring up regularly, and the meanings must be defined or redefined by the one who coined the term. Forget what you think a word means traditionally—now the urban-dictionary wading pool is the authority. And just try to keep up!
That said, it’s not impossible to grasp a basic understanding of this social-justice, progressive cultural revolution of which we find ourselves in the midst. And in so gaining this knowledge, we will also gain a clearer understanding about these times. Then with knowledge and understanding comes wisdom, which according to the Scriptures is simply knowing what to do and how to do it. Such wisdom comes from His holy Word, through His Spirit, and seeking Him with all our hearts who “giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not” (James 1:5).
While reading the terms in this glossary, bear in mind that in many cases, I am using definitions that line up with what the social-justice movement adheres to and not necessarily a traditional definition.
The Language of Today’s Cultural “Revolution”
Activist/Activism: Social justice, in its many forms, is primarily accomplished when people become activists—engaged in activism. The goal is to bring about societal change and can be as simple as writing a letter to a government official, or as dramatic as civil disobedience, or protesting in a violent or non-violent manner. With no lack of victimhood in our culture, activists can target any one of a long list of causes to take on. Racial issues, political change, gay/transgender causes, economic disparities, and women’s rights are just a few of the subjective causes with which to identify oneself; and the levels of involvement in any one cause vary from individual to individual. One can be merely a demonstrator, or a reformer, or an extremist, depending upon many factors.
Antifa: Literally, “anti-fascist.” Originating in the 1930s in Germany, it was the violent arm of the left—the Communist Party. Fascism is defined as a nationalist far-right authoritarian style of government, so Antifa then labels any people or group they consider far right as Nazis, fascists, and white supremacists. The goal of Antifa is to remake America into a Marxist state.
Biphobia: Patterned after the term “homophobia,” biphobia is a term of contempt defined as a fear of bisexuals and bisexuality. Those who oppose these alternative lifestyles are said to be afraid of them (phobic). “Social-justice warriors” would say that those who believe the Bible teaches that any kind of sexual activity outside of marriage between one man and one woman is sin are suffering from some type of phobia.
Black Lives Matter (BLM): The Black Lives Matter (BLM) Global Network Foundation is a largely decentralized international organization—listing regional chapters instead of particular leaders. It was founded by three women, two of whom identify as “queer”: Patrisse Khan-Cullors, Opal Tometi, and Alicia Garza. On its “What We Believe” page, BLM describes itself as a movement “to fight for freedom, liberation, and justice,” but its definition of those terms includes radical reform to basic societal norms including the disruption of the nuclear family. In a 2015 video, Khan-Cullors admitted that BLM is led by “trained Marxists.”1
A closer look at BLM reveals that while there are many who see it as a noble force for racial equality, the intelligentsia behind it is using black people and those involved with BLM as pawns to create civil unrest with the goal being to overthrow existing forms of government with Marxism.
Cancel Culture: “Cancel culture refers to the popular practice of withdrawing support for (canceling) public figures and companies after they have done or said something considered objectionable or offensive. Cancel culture is generally discussed as being performed on social media in the form of group shaming.”2 An example of cancel culture would be a social media blitz against a company that has publicly spoken up against “gay” marriage or transgender bathrooms.
Capitalism: “A form of economic order characterized by private ownership of the means of production and the freedom of private owners to use, buy, and sell their property or services on the market at voluntarily agreed prices and terms, with only minimal interference with such transactions by the state or other authoritative third parties.”3
“Christian” Palestinianism: In direct opposition to Christian Zionism, this dangerous movement claims that Palestinian Arabs were the original possessors of the land of Israel. In this reboot of Replacement Theology,4 dominion theology, amillennialism, and the teaching that the Jews are occupiers and oppressors, “Christian” Palestinianism seeks to remove all Jewish elements from the Bible and eliminate the Old Testament, thus opening the door for the Islamization of the church. It is the antithesis of what evangelicals have traditionally believed about God’s promises to Israel, Bible prophecy, and the very nature of Jesus Himself.
Cisgender: A term to label one who identifies with the gender he or she is born with. It is not related to sexual orientation, however, merely gender. It is the opposite of “transgender”; from a biblical point of view, it would be those who do not denounce or try to change the gender with which they are born.
Classism: The determination of one’s value to society based on economic, educational, or lineage background. In the social-justice paradigm, classism is a form of victimhood in which the middle to upper class discriminates against the working class/poor/minimally educated segments of society. Karl Marx viewed society relative to its classes and believed that class is determined by property ownership. He divided society into two classes: the bourgeoisie, and the proletariat; Marxists believe the former controls the capital and production for a society, the latter provides the labor.
Collusion: The traditional meaning of the word is “secret or illegal cooperation or conspiracy, especially in order to cheat or deceive others,” but in social-justice minds, the word means to show support and cooperation with groups they consider dominant in “power, privilege, and oppression.”5
Communism: “The specifically Marxist-Leninist variant of socialism which emphasizes that a truly communist society can be achieved only through the violent overthrow of capitalism and the establishment of a ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’ that is to prepare the way for the future idealized society of communism under the authoritarian guidance of a hierarchical and disciplined Communist Party.”6
Consumerism: A way of life that revolves around acquiring “stuff” and the attitude that a person’s happiness is dependent upon having material possessions. In the global village, it is looked down upon as the main reason for the destruction of the environment as the cost of production leads to more pollution and the destruction of farmland, thus accelerating the destruction of the environment. As cities grow, demand for goods and services grow, and the economic shift of a nation from agricultural, to manufacturing, to consumerism has been instrumental in bringing about a massive but fragile global economy. The term is being used by those fighting for a socialist society to downplay and denounce capitalism.
Critical Race Theory (CRT): The idea that the law is inherently racist and designed by Caucasians to maintain or further their standing in politics and economics over minorities. It has branched out to include liberal feminists, LGBTQ, and other minorities. Proponents believe that even the Civil Rights laws, which they claim did nothing to benefit people of color, mainly benefited the whites only. Richard Delgado, professor of civil rights and CRT at the University of Alabama School of Law, was the first (along with wife Jean Stefancic) in the 1980s to introduce this theory at the academic level, where it continues to have the most traction. The term is derived from Critical Theory based on dialectic philosophy that teaches “truth” (synthesis) is achieved by a critical approach to ideas, beliefs, and practices. As with Marxism, the idea is that, in order to have improvements and reform, conflict (revolution) is necessary to bring about resolution.
Critical Theory (CT): A sociological approach to examining the structures of society by asking, “do these long-held structures and practices benefit all people or only the privileged?” The underlying (Marxist) goal is to rethink and restructure every institution of society so that no one is at a disadvantage. Coming out of the Frankfurt School in Germany, the Nazis shut it down in 1923, but it found a home at Columbia University then returned to Germany in the 1950s as “The Institute for Social Research.”
Cultural Appropriation: A term coined in the 1980s academia, cultural appropriation happens when one culture (or person) adopts practices or beliefs from another culture without really understanding the significance of that culture. In social-justice circles, cultural appropriation (or sometimes called cultural mis-appropriation) is frowned upon especially when a “dominant” culture (such as whites or the wealthy) is embracing the characteristics of less dominant cultures without understanding.
Cultural Hegemony: A term developed by Marxist philosopher Antonio Gramsci to suggest that the upper class exploits and manipulates the lower class into accepting and maintaining the current status quo.
Cultural Marxism: Refers to the encroachment of Marxism in all areas of culture (i.e., political correctness, LGBTQ rights, multiculturalism, feminism, the attack on the family, and Judeo-Christian ethics). Also called “Neo-Marxism,” the left considers this a derogatory term used to denounce what they believe is right-wing cultural hysteria from those who fear communism. The leftist media would categorize the term cultural Marxism as a mere “right-wing conspiracy theory” with its roots in the McCarthy era.
Cultural Sensitivity Training: A workplace program that is supposedly designed to ensure that all employees understand and abide by the ground rules for how to treat people depending on their gender, race, age, or sexual orientation. In today’s “progressive” socialist environment, employees in some companies are being coerced and even threatened with job loss if they do not embrace radical sensitivity-training issues (such as transgenderism and “gay” marriage) that go against their moral values.
De-centering: To cause to move away from a traditional view (e.g., decentering conservative biblical sexuality and marriage views would involve embracing views outside of that scope such as “gay” marriage, transgenderism, living together without marriage).
Dialectical Materialism: “A Marxist tenet describing the process by which the class struggle between bourgeois capitalist society and the exploited workers produces the dictatorship of the proletariat and evolves into socialism and, finally, communism, dictatorship of the proletariat.”7
Dialogue: An intentional conversation between two parties who may differ significantly in their cultural worldview or goals with the intended outcome of meeting in the middle or coming to some sort of understanding. The exchange of ideas, presumably on a civil level. In the realm of social justice, “Intergroup Dialogue” is intended to improve understanding among differing social standings, to promote social justice; but in reality, the goal is to highlight social in-justice and promote fundamental change. See Hegelian Dialectic.
Diversity: In socialism, this would be tied in with the view that every organization, religious group, government agency, charity, or business needs to be “diversified” in that each one must have a wide variety of people groups within it, especially “oppressed” people groups. “An unhappy corollary of the championing of “victim” categories is the denunciation of “oppressor” categories, thus generating increasing popular anti-white, anti-male, anti-heterosexual, anti-Christian and anti-Jewish campaigns.”8
Environmental Stewardship: Coined by Aldo Leopold in the mid-20th century, it refers to all the ways that mankind is obligated to protect the natural world from degradation and provide all means of conservation for future generations. When it intersects with the politics of global warming or climate change, it then becomes mandated in the form of tax increases, decreasing “carbon footprints” with associated guilt for our high-tech age and lifestyles. The spiritual aspect that is increasingly a part of environmentalism involves preaching love for Mother Earth from a religious perspective that is underpinned by Darwinism.9
Ethnocentrism: The belief that one’s own culture is superior to others. Having partiality toward our own set of beliefs or way of life is not inherently bad in that it doesn’t necessarily mean that one views other cultures as inferior. From a cultural perspective, it can simply reflect the experiences and constants that one is most familiar with. The cultural revolution practices a “reverse ethnocentrism” by rejecting one’s own culture, or country, or ethnicity especially if that culture or country is considered to be an oppressor or dominant.
Feminism: The position that when society is male-dominated, women are oppressed in the areas of marriage, finances, pay, maternity leave, etc. Beginning with the suffrage movement, women have increasingly become more political in their methods to include abortion rights and gender-neutral inclusive language. There are several forms of feminism, including multicultural and intersectional. Social-justice feminism includes Marxist feminism, which analyzes the ways women are oppressed through the lens of a communist philosophical system regarding property ownership and compensation for labor. Feminism in the church today expresses itself with gender-neutral Bibles and taking over pastoral roles. A biblical view of women gives women equal value, worth, contribution, and essentialness with men but also describes each of their unique roles.
Gender Binary: “The idea that there are only two genders—male and female. This is viewed as problematic by social justice warriors, despite being a biological truth.”10
Genderfluid: Meaning gender is not something that has to remain the same but can always be changing. (e.g., You may be born a man, but you can become a woman.)
Gender Identity: The sense of self that comes from being male or female and can vary from birth on in our gender-fluid culture. Gender-justice activists tie any and all gender oppression or discrimination to every other injustice that exists, such as racial, economic, immigration, violence, feminism, education, and financial, making all human injustice rise and fall largely based on the human set of chromosomes supplied at birth. Currently, activists are claiming upward of 100 genders among humans, but biologically, there are still only two.
Hegelian Dialectic: George Wilhelm Frederich Hegel was a 19th century German philosopher. He developed a method of using the art of argument to determine “truth”—with a prearranged outcome to define and direct the process. There are three parts to utilizing this dialectic: “Thesis” is an idea or philosophy. “Antithesis” refers to the position of refuting the original idea from an opposite perspective. “Synthesis” is meeting in the middle, to form a new idea that both parties can agree on. It works best on a group that is easily controlled or manipulated and lacking critical thinking skills or the ability to reason through a debate.
In the church, one example might be this: The thesis is that biblical Christianity presents the only way to God is through Jesus Christ, and the Bible is the truth. The antithesis might be that Islam is one of the three great religions in the world, and the Koran is the truth. The synthesis would be “Chrislam,” in which Christianity and Islam co-exist through compromise, that Jesus is also represented within Islam and is therefore the same Jesus as the biblical one. There are many such examples in the church that we call “compromise” but represent the Hegelian Dialectic philosophically.
Politics is a prime example of a constant flow of dialectical thinking. The far left and right are endlessly pitted against each other with the end goal of a synthesis between the two after a protracted media war of spin, psychological warfare, and change on every level. Antifa, BLM, and other groups demanding societal change on a fundamental level will not stop just because they are opposed; they will only stop when the synthesis matches their pre-ordained agenda. (If Christians better understood this manipulation, there would be far less compromise in the church.)
Heterosexism: Social-justice warriors would say that to have a heterosexism viewpoint is oppressive and negative because “individual, societal, cultural, and institutional beliefs and practices favor heterosexuality and assume that heterosexuality is the only ‘natural,’ ‘normal,’ or acceptable sexual orientation.”11
Identity Politics: Where the focus is on who you are regarding race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and gender rather than what your political views and moral persuasions are.
Intersectionality: A term coined in 1989 by Kimberlé Crenshaw, a civil-rights activist. The theory behind it is that there are multiple sources of discrimination in people’s lives simultaneously. For example, one can be oppressed as a woman, and as a LGBTQ woman, and as a black LGBTQ woman. These categories of oppression intersect with each other, increasing the victimhood exponentially regarding entitlements and subjective justice.
LGBTTQQIA: “The umbrella community of people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, two-spirited, queer, questioning, intersex, and/or asexual.”12
Manarchism: “The belief that social anarchism will result in gender equality.”13
Microaggression: A social-justice warrior would say that a microaggression is an act committed by an “oppressor” person against an “oppressed” person. The act would be subtle and done possibly unintentionally, indirectly, and even unbeknownst to the “aggressor.” A few examples listed in an article supporting the term are: 1) “An able-bodied person using a bathroom stall reserved for someone who is disabled.” 2) “Telling a woman she should smile.” 3) “Referring to something you don’t like as ‘gay.’” 4) “Someone clutching his or her purse when a person of color walks by.”14
Narrative: Less about fact, doctrine, objectivism, absolutes; more about story, change, subjectivism, relativism.
Non-Binary: Those who identify as neither male nor female are said to be “non-binary.”
Oppressed vs. Oppressor: In Critical Race Theory, you are either an oppressor or an oppressed. Oppressed groups would include women, the low-income, people of color, LGBT, etc.); oppressor groups would include men, the wealthy, white, conservatives, etc.). Members of oppressor groups must refrain from voicing their views as it may intimidate those in oppressed groups. In actuality, Critical Race Theory has adopted a prejudicial and even racist mindset. It also causes dissension, distrust, suspicion, and hate toward people because of their supposed oppressor traits.
Patriarchy: Prior to the social-justice movement, this meant a social system wherein the father or the oldest male was head of the family, and descent was traced through the male line. Today, the term is as a catch-all term used in a derogatory manner suggesting that such a system is oppressive, abusive, and portrays male dominance. However, it is not the system of patriarchy that has failed but rather is the sinful nature in mankind (men and women) that causes abuse, cruel domination, and oppression. A biblical view of fatherhood portrays strength, kindness, leadership, protection, and godly wisdom. Sadly, fatherhood has been demonized by the radical socialist movement.
Political Correctness (PC): Coined in the 1980s, “PC” describes a set of culturally acceptable rules to avoid verbally offending any sex, gender, race, or “religion.” Those who are the alleged victims of verbal discrimination or offense are always seen as in the right, and those who perpetrate the victimhood are always wrong; there are also groups that can be spoken of slanderously, such as white men, and Bible-believing Christians, without recrimination. “Hate speech” is the legal reproach to getting justice from those who defame another person or group as defined by PC rules. Political correctness is the religion of cultural Marxism, which teaches a class struggle over which groups have power over other groups, determined, of course, by those with the power to control thought, speech, and behavior. The goal of PC doctrine, which has now permeated all of society, is to eliminate freedom of speech and the press in this attempt to force equality on every person in society, making it the conscience of secular humanism and the coming global religion as opposed to the conscience God has given every human.
Prejudice Plus Power: “The social-justice warrior standard for bigotry. This leads them to deny possibilities such as anti-white racism, misandry [prejudice against men], heterophobia, cisphobia, and other bigotry—against groups said to be privileged.”15
Progressive Christianity: Often used interchangeably with “social-justice Christianity,” or “emergent” Christianity, which is another way of describing a theology that is liberal, interspiritual, and politically minded. Progressivism in politics is simply Marxism. In the church, it seeks justice for every people group, engages in environmental causes, views the Bible merely as a social-justice manual, and does not ascribe to the doctrine of inerrancy. “Red Letter Christianity” springs from the progressive playbook, and dominion theology/amillennialism is their eschatology. Many leaders in the movement such as Jim Wallis, Shane Claiborne, Tony Campolo and Brian McLaren themselves subscribe to a Marxist/socialist worldview.
Queer: “An umbrella term within the LGBTQQIA community that refers to anyone who doesn’t prescribe to traditional societal views of gender and sexuality; implies elasticity and a resistance to the notion of a predetermined gender and sexual identity based on biology.”16
Racism: “Any criticism or negative sentiment that affects minority racial groups, regardless of validity. Note: Most social-justice warriors deny the possibility of racism against white people, due to their belief that bigotry is a combination of prejudice and power.”17
Reconciliation: The general definition simply means to restore broken relationships. In progressive “Christianity” (i.e., social-gospel “Christianity”), it brings opposing views to a compromised consensus so that all views are given equal standing (whether they are biblically sound or not). In social-justice circles, it identifies what are considered great divides among humans due to marginalization, discrimination or victimhood (real or perceived injustices) and then forces reconciliation to secure that every human being experiences the same rights and equality of position and property. The biblical definition of reconciliation is found in 2 Corinthians 5:18 where we are told that through Christ’s atonement, we are reconciled to God, having been alienated from Him through sin.
Red Letter Christians: An ecumenical religious/political progressive group that emphasizes some teachings of Jesus found in red letters in some published New Testaments. The verses are primarily construed to build a framework of social-justice values deemed most important in a public expression of “faith plus politics.” Red Letter Christians have attempted to distance themselves from the “conservative right” popular during the Bush years.
Reparations: Making amends for a wrong done due to injustice, criminal acts, or after a war is waged to compensate the offended party. After WW II, Jewish families from Germany who survived the Holocaust were given reparations for property taken from them by Hitler’s regime. Today’s debate centers around the white man’s need to compensate the descendants of slavery which includes financial output to level the playing field of every person whose ancestors suffered injustices. This would include apologies by current generations and the promise that it would never be repeated. Besides the obvious problem that it would be impossible to determine who would be an actual descendant, there is the issue of determining which injustices in all of history deserve such rewards regardless of the injustice or when it occurred in history.
Social Gospel: An ecumenical socialist creed that emphasizes the need for social reform in an attempt to promote political change and bring a form of justice to every race, class, and oppressed group. It de-emphasizes individual conversion to Christ while extolling community, unity, and the common good. In contrast, Jesus did not promote political change but redeemed the hearts of sinners.18
Social Justice: A temporal kind of justice that addresses the privileges and rights that every human must be allowed to have in society. There is economic justice, racial justice, gender justice, civil rights etc., but primarily revolves around economic justice which, of course, is the outcome of socialism (distribution of wealth). A “social-justice warrior” is someone who actively promotes these issues and see himself as a corrector of society’s greatest wrongs.
Socialism: A political theory that advocates government ownership and administration of a society’s production of goods and services vs. private ownership (capitalism). There are various types of socialist governments in the world, and each one might incorporate this ideology differently.
Systemic (institutional) Racism: The belief that racism is not just an individual problem but is integrated into the entire infrastructure and system of a society and that basically all white people are racist whether they know it or not, think it or not, or act like it or not. Since the killing of George Floyd, social-justice warriors have particularly focused on the police, insisting that police forces throughout the U.S. are saturated with racism; and defunding the police is the only solution. This is largely based on statements that police are killing unarmed black people in astronomical numbers each year, which according to various studies, is not true. One article, written by Larry Elder, a black attorney, radio program host, and documentary film maker, states:
Recent studies not only find no “systemic” abuse of black suspects by the cops, but if anything, cops are more hesitant, more reluctant, to use deadly force against a black suspect than against a white suspect. The Manhattan Institute’s Heather MacDonald writes: “Regarding threats to blacks from the police: A police officer is 18.5 times more likely to be killed by a black male than an unarmed black male is to be killed by a police officer.”. . .
In Baltimore, where in 2015, a black man named Freddie Gray died in police custody, how could one, with a straight face, argue that resident blacks suffer from “institutional” racism? The mayor was a black female; the top two officials in the police department were black; the city council was majority black; the state attorney who brought the charges against six officers was black; three of the six charged officers were black; the judge before whom two officers tried their cases was black; the U.S. attorney general was black, as was the president of the United States.19
Tolerance: The most ironic and hypocritical of all the social-justice terms. To tolerate by definition is merely to accept or agree with an opinion, belief, or lifestyle that one would not normally give assent to based on their upbringing, environment, or beliefs. However, as the demand for tolerance of every lifestyle, identity, and view grows, those who publicly demand that society give assent to pre-determined values and language framed in political correctness are those most likely to be intolerant of any view or ideology that does not match their own (i.e., Christianity and biblical values). In other words, social-justice warriors can demand that others are “tolerant” of them in every area, while they are under no obligation to agree with anything to which they don’t adhere.
Virtue Signaling: Expressing opinions that are designed to align with a certain politically correct or socially acceptable cause. It claims some sort of agreed-upon moral high ground with the attending feeling of moral superiority (i.e., good works for a social-justice climate). The church of the social gospel is also not immune from virtue signaling in its efforts to mimic the world’s causes and bring the culture into the church to appear to be more appealing to the lost and please men instead of God.
White Fragility: Describes a type of response from a “privileged” race to those who want to have a discussion about how they should feel about their privilege or lack of required guilt. For example, if a white person is approached by a black person to discuss racial issues, the white person may become uncomfortable and defensive, especially if he is told he is racist, just because he is white. If he doesn’t engage, he is said to have “white fragility” and is out of touch with reality.
White Guilt: Also known as “colonial guilt,” it is a reflective state in which those who feel responsible for racial injustice (“woke”) in any form, beginning with slavery, need to take responsibility and pro-actively alleviate racial injustice. The concept of reparations is designed to play off this guilt and level the playing field for all races.
White Privilege: Ascribed privileges assigned to the white (Caucasian) race, the assumption being that a person has what they have simply by virtue of their genetics and that everything in society from employment to advertising systemically caters to a privileged race.
Woke/Wokeness: A supposed state of social and political awareness to the injustices of society for any one people group seen to be oppressed. The result is supposed to be a desire to challenge certain norms that society has taken for granted and modify one’s behavior to reflect the need to become an activist for change. However, the term, used frequently now in social media, has become more of a way to discriminate (are you “woke” or not) against those who may see the injustices of society but do not necessarily become vocal activists but live their lives treating all humans justly and lovingly. “Woke” activists, however, reject that and say “Silence is Violence.”
Woke Christianity: The “woke church” is one that is said to be conscious of certain injustices of society. The liberal churches then will use what they consider to be this essential worldview and proceed from the premise that their priority is to work for worldly justice for oppressed people groups, which includes acceptance of lifestyles that the Bible calls sinful. Interestingly, “woke” churches usually do not see the killing of babies through abortion as a social injustice. The church that is truly biblically “awake,” however, will prioritize the household with faith over ethnicity (Galatians 3:28: “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.”), call out sinful behaviors and lifestyles, and prioritize the spreading of the Gospel to all people.
Having read these terms, it is my hope you can see the contrast between the social-justice “narrative” and what is written in God’s Word. In God’s economy, the terms “justice” and “gospel” are clearly defined in biblical texts as you will see by the verses at the end of this booklet. To add the humanistic adjective “social” to these critical terms is to render them nonsensical and gives a temporal meaning where an eternal one that affects every person who ever lived is already established. With “social justice,” there is no room for personal salvation, forgiveness, repentance, and reconciliation. Rather, it creates an environment of hostility, unrighteousness, anger, distrust, pride, and resentment. God’s Word, on the other hand, couples true justice with righteousness, compassion, mercy, kindness, graciousness, and humility. These are the attributes of God and what He has offered to every human being and what He will put in our hearts toward others if we believe in Him and trust Him as our Savior. Social justice can try to guilt people and force them into treating others right, but it can never change hearts. It is a powerless substitute for the real thing. I leave you with the following verses from God’s Word, which beautifully show the meaning of true justice and perfect truth.
Defend the poor and fatherless: do justice to the afflicted and needy. (Psalm 82:3)
Justice and judgment are the habitation of thy throne: mercy and truth shall go before thy face. (Psalm 89:14)
Open thy mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy. (Proverbs 31:9)
And therefore will the LORD wait, that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore will he be exalted, that he may have mercy upon you: for the LORD is a God of judgment: blessed are all they that wait for him. (Isaiah 30:18)
But let judgment run down as waters, and righteousness as a mighty stream. (Amos 5:24)
Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Execute true judgment, and shew mercy and compassions every man to his brother. (Zechariah 7:9)
Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven: (Luke 6:37)
He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God? (Micah 6:8)
But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels [of compassion] from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him? My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth. (1 John 3:17-18)
For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit. (1 Peter 3:18)
To order copies of S is for Social Justice The Language of Today’s Cultural “Revolution,” click here.
- Dictionary.com, http://www.dictionary.com/e/pop-culture/cancel-culture.
- Paul M. Johnson, A Glossary of Political Economy Terms (Auburn University, 1994-2005, http://webhome.auburn.edu/~johnspm/gloss/capitalism.phtml.
- Read Mike Oppenheimer’s booklet Israel: Replacing What God Has Not (https://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog/?p=11341).
- Lexico Dictionary, https://www.lexico.com/en/definition/collusion https://www.dal.ca/dept/hres/education-campaigns/definitions.html.
- Paul M. Johnson, A Glossary of Political Economy Terms, op. cit. (http://webhome.auburn.edu/~johnspm/gloss/communism.phtml).
- Federation of American Scientists, “Glossary, Soviet Union,” https://fas.org/irp/world/russia/su_glos.html.
- Philip Carl Salzman, “How ‘Social Justice’ Undermines True Diversity” (https://www.mindingthecampus.org/2019/03/25/howsocial-justice-undermines-true-diversity).
- Read Roger Oakland’s booklet A Christian Perspective on the Environment: How the Catholic Pope and Other Leaders Are Uniting the World’s Religions Through Environmentalism (https://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog/?p=21237).
- “A Glossary of Social Justice Warrior Terminology” (The Zeroth Position, https://www.zerothposition.com/2016/03/30/a-glossary-of-social-justice-warrior-terminology).
- Dalhousie University, “Social Justice Terms” (https://www.dal.ca/dept/hres/education-campaigns/definitions.html).
- Lewis & Clark College, “ABC’s of Social Justice” (https://www.lclark.edu/live/files/18474-abcs-of-social-justice).
- “A Glossary of Social Justice Warrior Terminology,” op. cit.
- “What is Microaggression and How to Avoid it? ( TherapyNYC, https://mytherapynyc.com/what-is-microaggression).
- “A Glossary of Social Justice Warrior Terminology,” op. cit.
- Lewis & Clark College, “ABC’s of Social Justice,” op. cit.
- “A Glossary of Social Justice Warrior Terminology,” op. cit.
- Read my booklet, The Dangerous Truth About the Social-Justice Gospel (https://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog/?p=15318).
- Larry Elder, “The George Floyd Riots: Where’s Black Lives Matter When You Need Them?” (Front Page Magazine, June 11, 2020, https://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/2020/06/george-floyd-riots-about-racism-and-police-larry-elder/); to read more about systemic racism and Critical Race Theory, read Critical Race Theory, Southern Baptist Convention, and a Marxist “Solution” That Will Not Work at https://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog/?p=32684
To order copies of S is for Social Justice The Language of Today’s Cultural “Revolution,” click here.