Should you help make Kony famous?

Image: Should you help make Kony famous?

How should a Christian respond to the Kony 2012 movement?

What do you think of Kony 2012?

In less than a week, more than 70 million people have viewed the Kony 2012 video on YouTube. Even if you haven't yet watched it, you couldn't have missed people discussing it all over Facebook.

Pretty much everyone has been horrified about the terrible stories of Joseph Kony's army and how he has committed unimaginable crimes against humanity. We've been shocked to hear how this man caused 30,000 children to be kidnapped and how he forced them to kill even their own family members.

Some people have been quick to jump on board the Kony 2012 train - tweeting, clicking 'Like' and even committing to buy the box of posters and bracelets.

Others have stopped to check out the claims more carefully, and some have agreed with the people who have questioned whether this whole Kony 2012 campaign is really such a good idea after all.

If you need help making up your mind then hit Google and start reading. You'll read lots of good and bad blogs and news stories that will give you lots to think about.

But, whether or not you're in favour of this whole social media circus, you've got to agree that it is just pure injustice to think that Joseph Kony has done these horrific acts and has never been punished for his crimes.

It's good to want justice 

We are right to feel the injustice. In fact, I think it's right to say we are all created by God with a natural sense of justice. We hate it when evil people get away with doing evil, and when the innocent suffer for doing right.

That's why it's right to feel angry at Kony. We should long for him to get caught by the law enforcers and tried before a judge. We want justice, and we want Kony to get everything that he deserves.

But should we be totally focused on getting justice?

Well, some Christians spend their whole life trying to bring justice to people like the families in North Uganda, or any of the other places affected by the actions of evil men and women. They lie awake thinking about ways in which they can do things to free people from oppression and injustice on earth.

Sometimes they feel this way because they love the people who are oppressed, and hate the sin of the oppressors. This is good.

But sometimes they try to bring justice to our world because they think that Earth needs to be just like Heaven. They think that they are growing the Kingdom of God by removing oppression in the world.

For the theology nerds out there, this is called Liberation Theology. It's a way of thinking about God and his creation that focuses too much on renovating our damaged world and not enough on helping people know how they can have their sins forgiven and enjoy a bomb-proof hope in Heaven. Maybe that's a little simplistic, but it gives you the idea.

Make Kony famous, and pray 

So, should you help make Kony famous? Sure. Let's get this mongrel caught and brought to justice.

But more importantly, let's keep thinking about injustice from God's viewpoint.

When Jesus died, the greatest act of injustice was committed. A man who was innocent was executed for a crime he never committed.

But that injustice means that anyone who believes and trusts in Jesus will be forgiven by God for the greatest crime of all... rejecting the God who made you, loves you, and deserves our undying loyalty.

So, feel free to help this Kony 2012 internet virus spread. Let's make Kony famous so that it makes it easier to get him brought to justice. But let's also get praying more that both the victims and the perpetrators of those crimes get to experience the forgiveness of their sins that comes from the greatest injustice of all.

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Comments (7)

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  • user

    Travis

    Jesus told his disciples to pray that God’s will would be done on earth as in heaven. You seem to suggest that it’s a little extreme to believe in such a prayer.

  • user

    Jodie

    Hi @Travis. Thanks for your question.
    We should certainly pray that God’s will would be done on earth as it is in heaven, as Jesus taught. But this prayer isn’t asking God to make earth exactly the same as heaven, is it?

  • user

    Travis

    Heaven is important but earth is far more then a spiritual waiting room until heaven comes. God made this world he is deeply interested in redeeming it. You seem to suggest that the cause of redeeming humanity and restoring God’s kingdom here on earth, is like a 2nd rate issue. Using the term liberation theology implies that its not normal to want to see God’s kingdom lived out on earth. Like they are a segregated group that don’t belong in mainstream Christianity.

  • user

    Jodie

    Thanks, @Travis.
    In a sense, yes, you’ve heard me clearly. The main game for believers in Jesus Christ is warning people to flee from the coming wrath of God by believing in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. That was the main message that the first Christians went around preaching in the Book of Acts, and that’s the main message I, too, preach.
    That said, it doesn’t completely have to be an “either/or”. I was motivated by the Kony 2012 video to do something for those affected by this evil, and that was because the Spirit of God works in me to want to love all people as we await the return of Jesus. Not surprising, these acts of love to unbelievers are actually a powerful testimony to the truth of the gospel of God, so they both kinda go together nicely.
    However, at the end of the day, whether or not Kony gets justice, and whether or not the profound evil felt by those in Uganda is healed, the most important thing is that every person be saved from the judgement of God through the forgiveness of their sins given through Jesus’ death.

  • user

    Travis

    I’m reasonably close to agreement with you. There is a big downside to people who get caught up in liberation theology and that would be while they are trying to save the world they ignore the need to call people to repentance and surrending our lives to Jesus. However i think one of the big drawbacks of Church going is that too often it’s all too much about believing the right things and not nearly enough about living for the right things, which for me is why Church members by in large are far too passive in their faith. Christianity is more then just a system of beliefs tucked away waiting for heaven. Christianity is a cause, which we ought to pursue above all else. Young people want to be part of a cause not just a religious system of belief. Yes it’s not either/or and yes they absolutely go well together.

  • user

    Jodie

    @Travis, that’s a very helpful response, thanks.

    Yes, following Jesus has to be so much more than just securing our salvation and sitting idle.

    Yes, Christianity certainly is a cause, and it saddens me to think that we’re all too quick to keep this cause quiet. Imagine if young (and even old) Christians got as worked up about following Jesus as they did about finding Kony… although I’m probably a bit too harsh there.

    Nonetheless, following Jesus should spill into every bit of our life, including our love and care for those who suffer now.

    But we must never lose sight of the fact that the greatest threat facing humanity is hell, and that means our urgent need is to rescue people by promoting the gospel at every opportunity.

    Thanks for this opportunity to graciously engage in this important topic,

    Jodie

  • user

    Laura

    I have found that many Christians treat their faith just as a way to live, which it is, but we really should also view Christianity as a cause which deserves our time, attention and money. Imagine if someone created a video similar to Kony2012 regarding how we, as Christians, should respond to sin. We need a wake up call, to act, to get as passionate about Jesus and saving others as we are about saving the Ugandans. Though I believe Kony2012 is a worthy cause, I also believe that saving others and addressing sin as a whole is more important, and as Christians this should be our first priority :)