Does racism still exist in the church today? One would think the church of the 21st century would have matured in acceptance toward all races and socio-economic groups. Tony Morgan was outraged when he heard this sad story from one of his friends. Here is just a small portrait of the pathetic picture his friend painted.
“I spent the last four months as lead pastor of [a church in the Southeast] and was let go last week for baptizing six black teens into an all-white church. Even though the church leadership assured me that racial integration wouldn’t be a problem during the interview process, a handful of the high-dollar folks revolted and had me removed without the church’s knowledge…”
“I rarely get angry, but these actions are so outside God’s design for the church that I’m left repulsed.
God’s design for Christ-followers is:
- “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.” (Galatians 3:28)
- “So Peter opened his mouth and said: ‘Truly I understand that God shows no partiality, but in every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him.’” (Acts 10:34-35)
- “But if you show partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as transgressors.” (James 2:9)
- “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” (Matthew 28:19)
- “Whoever says he is in the light and hates his brother is still in darkness.” (1 John 2:9)
I pray there’s eventually personal conviction and that God’s justice prevails. By the way, it’s in instances like this that I’m glad I worship and serve a just God. My God gets angry too!” –Tony Morgan
In addition to Morgan’s thoughts, we’d like to include a valuable instrument for measuring Christian racism.
Peter Scazzero Offers Some Indicators to Evaluate Whether or Not You Struggle with Racism
Racism/Bridge Builder Test
- Is there a particular group of people/ethnicity/race that you simply can’t stand?
- Is there any particular group of people/ethnicity/race your child cannot marry? Or You?
- What types of people cause you to cross the street if you are walking alone?
- When you think about images that portray beauty and sophistication, what culture/color is it imaged after?
- What, if anything, happens inside you when you see interracial couples? Which types or combinations of couples?
- When is the last time you visited the home/apartment of someone from a different culture/race or when was the last time you invited them to your home/apartment.
- What is your attitude towards people/groups that prefer music that is different than your preference? (e.g. Classical, classic rock, hard rock, Pop, Jazz, Hip-Hop, R and B (rhythm and blues), gospel, heavy metal, etc.
- Have you ever asked someone of another group to answer a question as a spokesperson for their entire race/culture?
- What type of person would you most trust to invest or steward your money? What type of person would you least trust to invest or steward your money?
- When you meet people from another race/culture who do not fit your stereotype (i.e. nicer, smarter, dumber, aggressive, passive, articulate) that you expected, are you surprised?
- When a driver of another car is driving too fast, too slow, or makes a mistake – and they are of a different ethnicity/race – do you say to yourself: “Figures.”
“Christ brought us together through his death on the cross. The Cross got us to embrace, and that was the end of the hostility. Christ came and preached peace to you outsiders and peace to us insiders. He treated us as equals, and so made us equals. Through him we both share the same Spirit and have equal access to the Father.” Ephesians 2:16-18 The Message.