The Ear: Nathan Brown Focuses on Justice

If you know an Adventist book editor who has earned degrees in law, literature, English and writing — and written or edited 12 books, including a novel — then you know Nathan Brown. For six years he edited church magazines for the South Pacific Division, and for the past five years has been book editor of the Signs Publishing Company, near Melbourne, Australia. He is also a monthly online columnist for Adventist World.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at
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Great article.

This has been one subject which has made me wonder at times. It really didnt hit me, I think, till I read Isaiah 1:10-17

10 Hear the word of the Lord,
you rulers of Sodom!
Give ear to the teaching[b] of our God,
you people of Gomorrah!
11 “What to me is the multitude of your sacrifices?
says the Lord;
I have had enough of burnt offerings of rams
and the fat of well-fed beasts;
I do not delight in the blood of bulls,
or of lambs, or of goats.
12 “When you come to appear before me,
who has required of you
this trampling of my courts?
13 Bring no more vain offerings;
incense is an abomination to me.
New moon and Sabbath and the calling of convocations—
I cannot endure iniquity and solemn assembly.
14 Your new moons and your appointed feasts
my soul hates;
they have become a burden to me;
I am weary of bearing them.
15 When you spread out your hands,
I will hide my eyes from you;
even though you make many prayers,
I will not listen;
your hands are full of blood.
16 Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean;
remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes;
cease to do evil,
17 learn to do good;
seek justice,
correct oppression;
bring justice to the fatherless,
plead the widow’s cause.

In the ESV the word “justice” is used 23 times. But as I wrote above, this bit of text right here is one I keep coming back to. And I don’t know why.

I guess, I thought, well, Israel was a theocracy, so this doesn’t apply to us in the same way. We live in a secular society and things are different. So why doesn’t this reasoning resonate well with me, then? Again, I don’t know. Nathan said it well…

As for our publishing house’s, I know very little. But as far as some of our ABC’s are concerned, I ask this question: What are they doing way out there, in some backstreet, which no one has ever heard of, where no, none Adventist, will ever come? I may have made it a little too obvious lol, that I’m talking about a specific ABC, but wont say which. I’m sure there’s more.

I’m going to get into so much trouble one day with my pictures lol, but anywhooo!..


Great response. Great picture illustrating the location of the SDA church in the world. Thanks.
Also. TOO MUCH the SDA church has discussed THE SIN of Sodom and Gomorrah as being Homosexual behavior.
But in this set of verses you presented and in New Testament verses about those Twin Cities it was the evils of vs 17 that required intervention by God.
On the other hand, for 10 righteous persons in the Cities, God told Abraham he would not destroy the cities.
Righteousness [right doing] and Justice go hand in hand.

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What a amazing article - Justice appears to me to be love in action - so proud of what Nathan is doing - thanks for sharing


Before commenting, everyone should read, or reread Martin Luther King’s “Letter from the Birmingham Jail” Simply Google the writing in parentheses. It is one of the finest essays ever written on Justice.

This a theme the church has relegated almost to oblivion. If justice was ever needed to be revisited by the Adventist church it is today. Until reading the Northeastern Union President’s letter (Spectrum today) the church has been silent. Where is the outrage that innocent, unarmed black people are gunned down by the very police forces that have been hired to help them?

What about WO? Is that not an issue of justice in our own church? For some, it is a theological issue, but justice IS a major theological doctrine; but has seldom, if ever, been connected with doing justice. There is no justice when one group of people, whether black or women, are denied equality as God’s children. God doesn’t have favorites or step-children.


Why is injustice such a burning issue? As a child, I was disciplined for serious misbehavior. yet I can remember only the one time I received an undeserved spanking. oh yes there was one time That I deserved a spanking and had to go get a paddle from the woodshed. I could only find a slat with a nail in it. I cried as I gave the slat to my dad, Please don’t use the nail end. I felt I deserved to be punished, but that nail loomed very forbidding. Tom Z

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“Our own church” is much less interested in justice than in power & control.
The main motivation that fuels the discriminators’ anti-WO crusade is not justice, or fairness, not even spirituality. It’s just power & control.


Wow such a vivid description of child abuse. I’m so sorry that you had to endure such sadistic cruelty Tom.

Children should never be put through experiences like that.


years later as dad and I recounted the incident, he said, Tom I was laughing in side so hard I could hardly give you a lick. we both had a good laugh. My dad was one of the kindest men on earth. I was not an abused child, sorry the story carried that tone. tomZ