Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Jesus and Racism and Injustice


Jesus told those that were his followers that they are the light of the world. Light shines in the darkness and exposes what is hidden there. This is what Jesus did. He shined a light and exposed the Sin that dwelled in the hearts of all humans. Especially the Sin that dwelled in the hearts of the religious leaders of his time. Their sin infected the people that they were suppose to shepherd. One of these sins was racism. And a consequence of racism is injustice. Jesus came to turn things around.
We see this in the story of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:27), the woman at the well (John 4), the healing of the centurion’s servant (Luke 7:9), the healing of the Canaanite woman’s daughter (Matthew 15:28). 

Jesus speaking to his Jewish disciples said in John 10:16 (NIV) “I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd.”

Jesus’ follower after his resurrection continued in this anti-racist biblical worldview. We see it in the conversion of the Ethiopian (Acts 8), Peter’s encounter with Cornelius (Acts 10:23) and pretty much the rest the the New Testament. 

Paul’s said in Galatians 3:28 (NIV) “There is neither Jew nor Greek (race or ethnicity), slave nor free (economic status), male nor female (gender), for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Read what Paul said in Ephesians 2:11-3:6.

If you are a follower of Jesus Christ racism and injustice have no place within the body of Christ and by extension within the hearts of those who claim to be Christians. Why? First because Jesus exposed this sins as not being God’s will for humanity. Second every human being is created in God’s image. They are image bearers of God. This is how God see us therefore can we look at each other any differently? 

If you consider yourself a follower of Jesus, He tells us we are to be peacemakers not fomentors of hate and violence. We are not to justify lawlessness as an excuse to fight against racism. The world may say this but not those who are citizens of God's kingdom. We are to hold out the  message of the gospel of the kingdom of God as a message of reconciliation not division. Do not become a tool of the enemy that comes to divide, confuse, kill, steal and destroy. In this world you will have division, racism and injustice however, Jesus said I have overcome the world. Now we who claim to be followers of Jesus need to live as overcomes. We follow Jesus through the Holy Spirit which gave us the word of God not the Zeitgeist of the culture which gives us the wisdom's and philosophies of the world. It’s not the Zeitgeist that leads us but the Holy Spirit.   

We are to hear the cries of the oppressed and give them gift of love in Jesus which is both the word and try to meet their physical needs. Not a water downed love; A love as defined by God. A love the tells the truth even if it’s uncomfortable. A love that sees people with the eyes of God. The church is lead by Jesus and Jesus tells us it is for all people who are willing to have a heart change from darkness to light. You cannot legislate racism out of existence. It's a heart issue not a system issue. Racism is sin and Jesus is the only cure. 

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