With all the recent senceless violence and the wanton destruction of people's livelihoods, I am challenged to realize that God is still in control (He is). But even the message from those who haven't expressed their outrage through these particular sinful means is disturbing. I hear ad infinitum, ad nauseum, that the abuse of police authority where an individual ended up dead is the tip of the iceburg that our culture is inherently racist. Wrong!
As John Donne wrote "any man's death diminishes me." All lives matter!
Evil exists in this broken, sinful world. One thing my late father left me is that he said he isn't surprised at any gross wrongdoing that I or anyone else could do, as he believed in the doctrine of the total depravity of man. I just heard this morning Pastor Kevin on the Berean Bible Study program say that before God we are like a dead dog, which was a serious dig back in Biblical days, but when we respond to his grace we are restored and glorified.
The root of the fake message that the recent problem is a result of systemic racism is the false premise that black folks are victims of the racism inherent in the system. Even Christians are guilty of making blacks victims. A few years ago at my old church I told someone there that blacks should not be considered victims. She replied that I can't know what it's like because I'm not black (she isn't either). Well, I've been harassed, bullied and even hit by others. One group doesn't have the market on being wronged! We live in a broken, sinful world where people hurt others. Sin is an equal opportunity wrongdoing enabler!
Dr. Martin Luther King, who, by the way, preached non violent resistance and civil disobedience, just wanted America to live up to it's principles, which are steeped in Christian values and practice equal protection under the law. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas once succintly said that to give all Americans equality, you just have to take to heart this constitutional principle.
Dr. King's campaign yielded fruit. When I was in the Navy, racism was not rampid on the ship. Far from it! A self-professed redneck took a black shipmate to his hometown in the hills of Tennessee. A young lady who sat next to me on a plane who was headed back to Covenent College at Lookout Mountain, Tennessee., told me that some locals, where the "redneck" was from, would go to the edge of the campus and bash college students and blacks.
In Charlestown, S.C., where I was homeported, I befriended some older black guys who served in the Navy a decade or two before I did. They told me stories about discrimination. When one of the guys asked me what my shipmates would think if they knew I was "hanging around with soul", I told him they wouldn't think anything and added that black and white guys go on liberty together all the time. It's no big deal. He was pleasantly surprised.
You will never completely eliminate prejudice, just as you can't get rid of all sin in this world. When I slaved as a mess cook on my ship, I had a minor disagreement with a black cook in the cooking area. Some guys who were sitting nearby evidently heard us. As I passed by them, one of them said "don't take any sh** from that n*****." I responded "that's between me and Scotty," and that was the end of it.
When people believe they are victims, they can feel they need to get even, and go on the attack. Between WWI and WWII, Hitler preached that Germany was a victim, for example, because of the raw deal she got from the Treaty of Versilles. He stirred up hatred and the mantra was Germany against the world! About this time, German culture was not Christian. It was steeped in pornography and worshipped other idols. Don't take to heart Three Stooges Curly's thesis: "I'm a victim of soy cum stances!"
The root of problems in America is that we have turned away from God.
"If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land". -2 Chronicles 7:14
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