Quite a presumptuous title, I know. But I want you to know exactly why people have died at the recent horrors in Charlottesville, VA. And that’s exactly what they are: horrors. My heart is heavy writing these things. I write them knowing, at best maybe only seven will read them, but nonetheless I write because of the conviction of the Holy Spirit.
So, why did they die? Unless you repent, you will likewise perish.
No, not repent of dishonoring white nationalism (just a politically correct term for racism). What I’m saying is you must repent of your sins, whatever they may be and turn to Christ. This is how Jesus looks at these events in Luke 13, whether caused by people or a natural cause. These dark events are the megaphone to the world, “repent!”
Rationalism has failed.
Modernism has failed.
Post-modernism has failed.
Now some sociologists have claimed we’ve moved on to post-post-modernism. And I’ll guess that’ll fail too. What was supposed to fix this racism? Tolerance was the battle cry! Equality! Ah, the fathers have tasted of sour grapes, and the children’s teeth has been set on edge. No amount of self-help books, feel good stew, pills to pop, education, or psychology can fix this racist sin.
“You have no right to talk!” You say, “You’re a Southern Baptist!”
Indeed, we did sin. We took a mighty fall into this sin called racism. But we’ve repented just as publicly as we sinned.
My ancestors were racists. My dad used to be, slightly, probably just to appease his parents. Nonetheless, I was never brought up in this sin (by the grace of God), even though I lived in the ‘deep south’ (GA). I certainly noticed cultural difference, but I never thought of anyone as less than me do to their melanin count.
In fact, I was taught quite the opposite things in Awana, my Bible classes, and Sunday School classes at my Southern Baptist Church and school. I was taught things like “There’s only one race, the human race.” And, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” And, “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…”
I was actually shocked when I heard from some of my white and black friends their racist upbringing (some rejected it, some repented of it later). I thought (innocently, I guess) that racism had really ended. I mean, I heard the occasional racist comment from my parent or grandparent, but I had really thought it had come to an end with my generation! And when I found out that was wrong after watching the news for a while… I still naively believed it was at least gone in the church (my church, my denomination, my “evangelical” brand of believer, that is. I didn’t include the people of Westboro in that of course).
Well, I was wrong. There are still people influenced by that sin under the title “conservative baptist.” (No one that I know with influence or leadership in my denomination, I should clarify). People tried to accuse the preaching professors at SWBTS of racism, but (as I attempted to clarify in a previous post) thug culture associated with gangs and other sins, is a very sinful culture. But black people are not the only people who fall into that sinful culture unable to “rise out.” So the true racist was the one who looked at what those professors did and automatically thought “black people.”
Enough of the aside. I first realized there was tension in regard to this sin when our Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission supported the building of a mosque that the government tried to prevent (you know, because if we support government suppression of one religious group, we support it for ourselves). Now the arguments coming in against their action was not counters like, “what if what was being built was a temple to Molech?” (where they sacrifice children, not that that would be allowed, but for example’s sake). The arguments came, “I found the freedom you’re talking about in the Bible, Mr. Moore, right here in the Bible out of the serpent’s mouth.” Or, “Dr. Moore, are you even saved?”
Then, as I observed, Dr. James White had an “Interfaith Dialogue” with a conservative Muslim. Oh, all the ‘conservative’ Christians had a hay day with that taste of “ecumenicism.” The arguments came in “you didn’t rebuke him once!” “It happened in a church!” (as if our buildings are now more holy than what the NT church is, you know, the gathering of believers; also, there were no church buildings for the first Christians and several Christians around the world, but I digress). And, “We have to protect our way of life!”
That argument struck me most of all coming from a blessed Christian’s mouth. Our way of life? That’s our mission? To protect our way of life?
Let’s dive quickly into two biblical reasons why that is insanity.
- Jonah. You know whom God called Jonah to go? Nineveh. The people that hated Israel and Israelites hated them. That’s like God calling you to Nazi Germany, or perhaps, to the middle of the modern Islamic state. I have a feeling that if God called half of the Christians in America to preach the Gospel to the Islamic State, they’d be in a fish too.
- Our citizenship is in heaven. You know who had every right to “defend his way of life”? Jesus. You know who could call down thousands of angels to “defend his way of life?” Jesus. You know who said he could do this things and did not do them? Jesus. Our way of life as Christians is to follow his. For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come.
And, by the way, Jesus isn’t white.