South Africa is one of the most unequal countries in the world. These are deep seated gospel issues, and if anyone really cares about the people of God then they will have something to say about the negative effects of varying socio-economic issues and the impact they have on the people of God.

The Old Testament time of Jubilee is a beautiful picture of a different way of living among God’s people where the generational cycles of poverty are broken and interrupted through a series of intentional, deliberately different ways of living economically, socially and spiritually among God’s people. In this first of a two-part talk John Scheepers explores how the institution of Jubilee was designed to break those inter-generational cycles of poverty and exclusion as well as the implications for us today.

Jesus death on the cross is the comprehensive Jubilee event. It is through the death of Jesus that victory and liberation is brought to all of creation. The cross is not that which replaced the Jubilee (as if all the socio-political and economic aspects simply drop away leaving only a spiritual significance) it is the fulfillment of the Jubilee including the total redemptive accomplishment and final liberation from all that enslaves and oppresses humanity and creation.

The history of the church in South Africa is both complex and inconsistent. On the one hand silent acquiescence or worse entrenching and legitimizing racial division and economic inequality, and on the other hand providing the seeds of liberation and equality. Division and exclusion has not just been “out there” in society but has permeated…