By Providence Crowder
My sentiments on this topic I share exclusively with my Christian brothers and sisters, because “Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” (Amos 3:3). I am hoping that we can reason together and gain understanding from one another. I am praying that we lead by example for those who do not know God, and not let fear, anger, pride, or a vengeful heart drive our words and deeds. If we are in Christ, there is no distinction among us. Christians, we cannot be found among the voices of hate against our brothers or sisters. The Bible tells us that in that glorious day when we see God, His people are from among EVERY nation, tribe, and language:
“After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying with a great voice, saying, ‘The salvation [is] to Him who is sitting upon the throne — to our God, and to the Lamb!’” (Revelation 7:9-10)
Brothers and sisters, why do we find ourselves year after year becoming engulfed in discussing the problems of racism and race relations? Is not the idea of “race” a modern construct of sinful man devised to create a universal hierarchy among men, ranking them from superior to inferior? The philosophers, scientists, and other advocates of racial science continue to build off Medieval theories that assumed that beyond cultural differences, physical attributes such as skin tone can be used to determine a man’s intelligence and worth. Since they were first used, what purpose has racial classifications by religions or governments ever served except to become politicized and used as a way to control or discriminate against whole groups of people? We have wholeheartedly accepted and embraced the racial classifications assigned to us for the maintaining of a fabricated racial orders. Is not this whole idea of separate races contrary to that of God which deems that all men were created in God’s image and in his likeness?
We are well indoctrinated into this presumption of a so-called racial identity, even us who call ourselves Christian, knowing full well the Bible tells us: “He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their pre-appointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings” (Acts 17:26). “Have we not all one Father? Has not one God created us” (Malachi 2:10).
It is my belief that to have a true dialogue about race and race relations, we have to start from a point of truth, that there is but one race—the human race. And follow that will a second truth—man doesn’t have a racism problem, per se, he has a sin problem. We continue to misdiagnose the illness and prescribe anything other than God.
We say we want justice, but will we call for justice without calling on God who executes righteousness and justice for all who are oppressed? (Ps. 103:6). Will we not petition God and plead our cause with him?
We say we want peace, but will we ever experience true peace, the peace that passes all understanding, without petitioning the God of peace? Will we let another day, another hour, or another moment pass by without petitioning our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ for wisdom and clarity of thought? As Christians, we know that there is no true justice and no peace for those outside of a committed relationship with Jesus Christ. I pray that the Lord will give us eyes that we may see, and ears that we may hear.
Discussing “race” relations is fruitless if we leave Christ out of it. We cannot be so caught up in our own thoughts and opinions that we are not interested in what the Lord has to say on the matter.
Although race is the talk of the day, since the first man, Adam, fell into sin, there has been many divisions among men. The Bible identifies a few: family against family, tribe against tribe, and nation against nation. There are many differences among men that have caused division, envy, hatred, and pride; all of which are rooted in sin and will drive men to commit inconceivable evils towards one another. These can only be driven out by love. Love is the cure to all of our social ills.
So what can we do about this horrible place we find ourselves in where even the Church is divided and yelling that black lives or blue lives matter? Does God see black or blue? Does God show partiality? No (Acts 10:34). But he does know those who are His from those who are not. When we learn to love one another as Christ loves us, and see one another as God sees us, then will every life that God has created matter to us.
Loving others, even those who “look” like us, is a hard task for sinful man. But when we strive to love one another and suppress our pride and selfishness, and when we practice living righteously . . .we get better at it . . . we continually perfect it. When Christians lead and set this example of loving others for all to see, this is how others are drawn to the God of love.
When the world sees the transforming power and impact of God’s love in the lives of people, many will want to imitate us. Some will want to imitate us WITHOUT accepting the God who empowers us through his Holy Spirit to be like Him.
Good, let them imitate, and let us lead. Right now, the world is leading and we are following them into their madness, their anger, their theories, and their hatred one towards another. We are following their lead instead of following God’s.
As Christians, we are pro-life. We know that black lives, white lives, blue lives, and every other life will die in their sins if they do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal savior. Therefore, the biggest division among men is the great gulf between life and death.
Black life, are you saved or lost? Blue life, do you have eternal life, or will you die in your sins?
Blue life, I grieve when a life is lost on a police encounter that went bad. Black life, I grieve when a life is lost to violence in our cities. Female life, I grieve when a life is taken prematurely in the womb of a woman during an abortion. All lives, I grieve when a life is lost that did not know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior because he or she died in sin and will face judgement without having first been reconciled to God.
I want justice and I want peace. But the justice and peace I want can only be accomplished through love. It starts with me. It starts with my prayers for others. It starts with my prayers for mercy for my family, for my community, for this nation, for those abroad. It starts with me sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ with others. It starts with me living righteously.
I want justice and I want peace. So I will speak the truth in love and call out evil and injustice, because just as Dr. Martin Luther King wisely stated, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” We will stand on the side of right, no matter the color. We have to be the voice of reason and the moral compass that this world is sorely lacking.
I want justice and I want peace, but I will not achieve it through hate. I will challenge other Christians to lead by example and be consistently pro-life, loving all of God’s creation and desiring that none perish—white, black, brown, yellow, red, or blue.
Is there a safe place on this earth, or is the whole world filled with violence and wrought with sin? From the looks of things, just as it was in the days of Noah, the wickedness of man is great on the earth, and every intention of the thoughts of his heart is evil continually (Genesis 6).
Sin and violence are everywhere! From the American shores to the most remote parts of the world, sin is there. I believe that if someone unjustly takes my life through violence, what does it matter what his motive was? Is it worse if his motive for violence against me was because of my nation of origin, my gender, or the color of my skin? Or are all three unacceptable evils because hatred caused him to take the life of his fellow man?
Even concerning public servants at all levels of our government who take an oath to serve, protect, and preserve life, liberty and property, I know that an oaths is only as credible as the person giving it. And who can know for sure if he can keep an oath at all? Jesus says,
“Do not swear at all: either by heaven, for it is God’s throne; or by the earth, for it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King. And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make even one hair white or black. Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one” (Matthew 5:33-37).
If a person fails to uphold his or her oath, then that evil is on him and those who protect him in doing evil, and no one else. And even if no integrity can be found among men to righteously plead my cause, the God of justice will:
“For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate [me] from the love of God in Christ Jesus [my] Lord” (Romans 8:38-39).
Christians, let us come together and demonstrate why God has left us this great responsibility to be His representatives on the earth; because we have love one for another. By this everyone will know that we are His disciples (John 13:35).