Hate and division fill the streets and airwaves of the U.S. these days. Chasms of disagreement block ears and hearts so that understanding becomes impossible. Words like "right" and "left" are thrown around so frequently that all nuance is lost. Caricatures of viewpoints rule the day.
Under risk of being misunderstood or called names I will clearly state I am a conservative. Politically, I support limited government. Economically, I am a fan of capitalism. I am pro-life, own a gun, and think school choice is a fine idea. I believe in Jesus and take His Word seriously.
I have been told that being "on the right" means I hate people. Nope. I do not.
While I don't hate people, I admit, I DO hate some things, like:
- hungry children
And while I don't hate racists (because I don't hate people), I HATE RACISM.
I don't understand racism. What dark part of man justifies judging a person because of his or her ancestry? How does the amount of melanin in the skin determine the intelligence, ability, or kindness of a human?
Racism is evil and stupid. It defies God's creation and His Word.
Unfortunately, slavery and racism has been pervasive across continents and cultures throughout most of human existence. Our own country had the opportunity to change that trend of history, but in a great blot on the history of America, slavery was allowed to be imported and to remain here for several hundred years.
At least we have the Declaration of Independence, which clearly states, "all men are created equal," which means ALL. We always had this amazing statement to herald back to, like a beacon of truth. It is a bastion against prejudice. And the truth of the equality the Declaration announces is dependent upon the fact of our being "created."
Because of a Creator
- So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. [Genesis 1:27, ESV]
God created man, male and female, at the beginning of time. He didn't create races, but He programmed great complexity within human DNA. Adam and Eve contained the codes for diversity in every particular of the human body, including skin color.
The Declaration can unequivocally state "all men are created equal" because GOD DID SO and GOD SAID SO.
The very act of creation by a Creator defies racism. In the face of our mutual ancestry, a superior attitude based of the color of your skin is illogical. In fact, my own paleness means I have LESS of what God originally created in man. My lack of melanin means I burn more easily and have grown a nice crop of freckles over the years. Where is the superiority in that?
What Does God Hate?
My Creator, the God of Heaven and Earth, the Father who IS love, is recorded at hating a few things. Look at Proverbs 6:16-19:
There are six things that the LORD hates, seven that are an abomination to him:
a lying tongue,
and hands that shed innocent blood,
a heart that devises wicked plans,
feet that make haste to run to evil,
a false witness who breathes out lies,
and one who sows discord among brothers.
Proverbs 6:16-19 ESV
That Proverb describes the racist demonstrators: the haughty eyes of a false superiority, mouths that spout lies, and plans that sow discord and division.
Trust me, I am not saying racists are the ONLY people who fulfill this Proverb. I am acutely aware of ways I wander into these God-hated activities. But these protestors, whether in Charlottesville or anywhere else, fulfill this Proverb to a tee AND THEY CARRY A CROSS.
How it must grieve Jesus's heart to see the cross, the means of reconciliation and symbol of sacrificial love, be held up as a symbol of a hateful cause.
FACT: Jesus wasn't white! As a man, His earthly body was Middle Eastern and Jewish.
Many races are recorded in the New Testament as following Him, though I can't think specifically of an Anglo. Yet now, a bunch of Anglos hold up a flag of the most evil regime of modern history next to the the greatest symbol of love and sacrifice known in all time.
Slapping Jesus on top of your activity doesn't make it holy and doesn't make it correct. We can't fulfill what God states He hates and then wave a cross over it to make it acceptable.
Pick Up Your Cross
Jesus did offer us a cross, but it sounded like this:
And calling the crowd to him with his disciples, he said to them, "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel's will save it. (Mark 8:34- 35 ESV)
If any of us want to walk around with a cross we need to understand the responsibility and the assignment it requires. It involves denying myself and any rights I claim. Carrying the cross means my preferences, agendas, and pet peeves are subservient to Jesus's plans and priorities.
It means I pick up my own, personal instrument of execution so I can easily lose my life, and live for the sake of Jesus.
All this hate screaming across the news has made me examine my life. I want to walk a life with the cross before me and the world behind me. I don't want to compromise on truth, but I never want to abuse the name of Jesus to justify my own preferences.
Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all.
[Colossians 3:11 ESV]
Let us never use Jesus to justify our own hate. Racism is wrong. There is no excuse.