Thursday, February 12, 2009

"Letter from a Birmingham Jail"

16 April 1963
Martin Luther King Jr.'s Letter to his fellow clergymen...
Was not Jesus an extremist for love: "Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you." Was not Amos an extremist for justice: "Let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever flowing steam." Was not paul an extremist for the Christian Gospel: "I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus." Was not Martin Luther an extremist: Here I stand; I cannot do otherwise, so help me God." 

So the question is not whether we will be extremist, but what KIND of extremist we will be. Will we be extremist for HATE or for LOVE? Will we be extremists for the PRESERVATION of injustice or for the EXTENSION of justice? In that dramatic scene on Calvary's hill three men were crucified. We must never forget that all three were crucified for the same crime--the crime of extremism. Two were extremist for IMMORALITY and thus fell BELOW their environment. The other, Jesus Chris, was an extremist for LOVE, TRUTH, and GOODNESS, thereby ROSE above his environment." 

Perhaps where you are right now, the nation and the world are in dire need of creative extremists. 

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