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The Sin of Racism

By Steve Gregg

One of the most charged words at this time is the word “racism”.  It is used by folks on both endS of the political spectrum to charge their opponents and to dismiss them. Since it is such a politically and emotionally charged word it has become a lightning rod for conflict among friends and neighbors as well as church members. This week’s article from Tim Keller speaks about the sin of racism, the personal and the corporate nature of it and the Bible’s instruction concerning the sin of racism. It is vital for us as Christ followers to draw wisdom and understanding on this issue from Scripture and the Gospel. My hope is that this article will help you and us as a church in doing that.

I know some of you might be thinking I can’t handle another controversial topic. You’re tired. I hear you and sympathize. But the reality is for some in our congregation, this topic is not something that they get to opt out of. They live with the impact of the sin of racism daily and many of them are asking us as their Christian brothers and sisters to grow in our understanding of what they walk through every day. I can’t say it enough that this is ultimately not a right or left issue, it is a sin issue and one we don't have the luxury of ignoring. I know a number of folks are tired of the power politics they see playing out with this topic. I hear you but I would quickly add that if the church is not speaking to and addressing this, power politics will have its way. As one of our black brothers is often encouraging me, our neighbors desperately need to hear the church speak about justice AND forgiveness, to hear us humbly repent of the logs in our eyes while we seek to graciously address the specks in others. Our neighbors need us to help them cultivate an imagination for unity and righteousness. Many in our city and nation don’t believe that folks from different ethnic and racial background can live together. As the church we have the truth and grace of the Gospel that calls out the sin while offering forgiveness to the repentant sinner. Justice and redemption are both possible because of the cross. While these times are certainly challenging, there is a tremendous opportunity for the church to be a witness to the power of the Gospel to show redemptive love. Our desire is that these articles would play a small part in bringing about that witness.

The second article, The Sin of Racism can be found here.