The Lie of Racism
It is absurd to me that in 2021 we still have to speak out against racism and violence toward people based on their ethnicity. I grieve with and for the families of those killed in the shootings this past week in Atlanta. Regardless of the motivation of the killer, the impact of these killings for the Asian-American community is profound. Combined with the rise in hostility and violence toward Asian-Americans this past year, the effect is that it feels like we are under attack, and that I or anyone of my ethnicity could be victimized in this present societal climate.
As a Christian, I know that this violence and hatred is based on a lie. The lie is that certain people groups are less than other people groups. I know from Scripture that all people have a common ancestor, that we are originally one race. Cultures are different, but all people are made in the image of God and therefore have divine worth. This means we all have the right to life and dignity. A person is not less human than I am just because they are different.
In Christ, there is hope for unity. Just as the early Christian movement brought together Jews and Gentiles, male and female, slave and free and made them one in Christ, I believe that the best hope for equality and unity in our time is Jesus and his church. But it isn't automatic and it won't be easy. Let us look to root out the sin of racism in our own hearts, in our own families, in our own church.
It's not just racism. We are a nation plagued by sexual immorality, violence, and division. The consequences of these sins is dire. The cost is human lives. These people had a right to live:
Hyun Jung Grant
Paul Andre Michels
Soon Chung Park
Delaina Ashley Yaun
Their right was snatched away through violence enabled by the dehumanizing effect of sin. The fact that the killer was religious shows us that even in the church, sin continues to lurk.
Let us do the hard work of true repentance and of prayer for one another. But even more, we need to constantly live in the freedom, grace and truth that Christ offers. Let us fight hatred with love. Let us turn back darkness with light.