It has been a while since I have had to write in this series… but alas, Christians are giving Christians a bad name… again.
I want to thank my friend Amy for sending me this story, you can read it here.
Today we venture to the state of Alabama, known for its tolerance and racial equality… right? Think again….
A Christian ministry based in Alabama held a ministry conference. There was however one stipulation, it was for white people only… that’s correct, a white only Christian conference.
After doing a bit more research and watching some news videos (one posted below) I was shocked (sarcasm) to find out that the conference had KKK ties.
I respect every human beings right to believe what they want but the KKK is one that I have problems wrapping my brain around. The notion that one particular race is the superior one and that it was ordained from God is logic that escapes me.
For starters, Jesus Christ himself wasn’t white. (I dont care what Hollywood or pop culture tells you… examples here, here and here and even the most popular one here). You would think that if God was going to make the white race the superior one, that God would indwell in a white man. Secondly, if God is pro-white as these people claim, then why did God create other races to the begin with? So they could be picked on, ostracized, killed, and tortured because they have pigment in this skin? Wouldn’t it have just been easier for God not to create the other races and have a pure, white race to inhabit the earth?
Also, where in scripture is this supported? I can not remember Jesus ever saying “and white people shall inherit the earth…” In the video below the news reporter tries to ask this question. The reporter brings up the fact that in Galatians 3 it states that there is “neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” There are numerous passages in the Bible that speak of the reconciliation of Christ and the unity of all believers. Sure Christ was seen a counter cultural radical to some, but not a white supremacist. He didn’t even preach that God was 100% pro-Jewish people either; remember the woman at the well and the parable of the Good Samaritan? There are other instances where Christ was showing that the God of all the world is wanting to connect with all people of the earth.
The leader of the conference told the reporter that he was taking scripture out of context and was abusing the Bible… isnt that like the pot calling the kettle black? (no pun intended…) I mean come on… really? Is this even an argument? The Bible has been used for and against pretty much every issue under the sun. However, the notion that in the text there is a decree or teaching that to be a true faithful of God is to have a certain color skin, goes against the foundation of the gospel message itself. This distorts a text that people have turned to for centuries to connect with the faithful of old, to understand (or try) the movement of God in the world and learn what is means to be a follower of Christ in the world today.
At the conclusion of this event, the white members where going to hold a “sacred cross burning.” Umm…. OK….
Seriously? Do they think that if they put the word ‘sacred’ that everyone will be ok with this? Like sacred murder is ok because it is sacred? Sacred grilled cheeses taste better because they are sacred? This is a blatant attempt to justify a practice that has stood as the symbol of hate, racism and bigotry.
All of this is not what Christianity stands for. Yes, there was a time when the church was on the wrong side of history and supported segregation and even slavery. But as the church has grown and changed, so have our understandings of God and how God interacts in the world. For the mast majority of Christians, the idea of burning a cross or segregating people based on skin color is appalling. Some would argue that the church has not left its segregation roots; many churches today are still prodominately one race or another. While this is true, it is not mandated by law and there are plently of integrated churches holding worship services together. Because of this, it shows me that the church has a little more work to do in the area of race relations. (The Disciples of Christ in 2001 cast a vision of being a “Pro-Reconcillation/Anti-Racism Church, read more about it here.)
The cause of Christ is one that aims to restore all people to wholeness and completeness, to show them a way to connect to the Divine. Christ welcomed all and so should the church and all of those who claim to be Christ’s followers.
I dont care what color you skin, hair, nails, or clothes happens to be all should be welcomed to experience God.