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The Deafening Silence of Evangelicals on Racism and Hateful Talk
Posted by Clare
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I go out of my way to not be political in my blogs. But occasionally, I just have to ask, “Does anyone else notice how racism and hateful talk about our ‘enemies’ is rearing it’s ugly head again, and getting worse?” I’m not ready to call any politician a “racist” (yet), but as an evangelical and historically a Republican, I’m ashamed that the leaders of our party and pastors of evangelical churches do not courageously stand up and call out as sin, any statement that pits one race against another, or values one race, or nationality, higher than another.

Is it possible that we’re no longer sure ugly name-calling or shaming other races, immigrants and refugees, is even a sin? Two or three years ago, if we had overheard our teenage children saying the calloused things our national leaders are saying out loud and in public about immigrants, refugees, minorities or about people who disagree with our political beliefs, we would have called them out and if young enough would have washed their mouths out with soap!

Fellow followers of Jesus, have we actually forgotten these commands of the Bible?;

“But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, ‘Raca,’ is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.” Matthew 5:22

“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.  If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that?” Matthew 5:43-46

The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord your God.” Leviticus 19:34

“To fear the Lord is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech.” Proverbs 8:13

Our children are watching us

I’m not only embarrassed that Christian leaders are not speaking out against the leaders of their party, but as I watch the rallies, press statements and interviews of both parties, I’m shocked that more Christians I know personally aren’t speaking out against this behavior. Is it really possible, Jesus is giving them, or us, a “bye” on his commands to love others as ourselves, just because the other party is doing the same? I expect less from non-Christians. But for our leaders who claim to be Christians we should refuse to hold our nose at their public and private behavior in order to achieve a conservative agenda. God’s will can never be accomplished by using means that violate his commands. Yes, God worked through Nebuchadnezzar, but Daniel called him out for his pride and arrogance. And, Daniel didn’t vote for him!

I’ve already sat down with our older grandchildren and let them know that Jesus commands always trump my feelings about any political position. The ends do not justify the means. Yes, I tell them what I agree with and disagree with and why. But there isn’t one of them that don’t know what I think of politicians who claim to be Christians who say hateful, racist and ugly things. Do your children or grandchildren know you will not tolerate or condone that kind of behavior? What are your children, or grandchildren hearing around your dinner table? Are you the one teaching them to love our enemies? (Next week’s blog topic by the way.) Someone much smarter than me, centuries ago said, “Silence is consent.” The silence from most Christians is deafening.

Our children and grandchildren are watching us. More importantly, Jesus is watching us. “Be careful little mouth what you say” (or tolerate what others say, silently).

Seriously, this isn’t just a rant. Imitators of Christ need to begin doing just that, acting like Christ if anything is to be done about changing what is happening in our country. Pray for our Christian leaders, but don’t let them off the hook morally. They represent more than your state. Good or bad, they represent Christ

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