Race and Religion

Many people think the spirit of racism is not real and view it as a myth, but it is very real and has been a sensitive subject for a very long time. Many “Christians” operate in a discriminatory manner as “racists” when it comes to races and creeds of people that they deem to be inferior. While this situation sounds like an oxymoron, it can be the direct result of what happens to a Christian who doesn’t constantly renew their mind. When we don’t renew our minds, our surroundings can easily impact our thoughts and lead us to attitudes of inferiority or superiority. Viewpoints of superiority exist when we don’t see each other as equals and privileges become priority for certain groups and not others; however, receiving Jesus affords all of us the same privileges in Him. It’s vital for us to understand that God has always been after equality; that’s why Jesus made us equal. We all become children of God in Christ and equal in His sight, so it seems unfair to serve Him and not love your brother or your sister.

In Christ, we experience privileges that give us the capacity to thrive, soar, and become competent in many areas of our lives. Jesus treated the woman equal to the man, the Gentile equal to the Greek, and the slave equal to the free. Differences don’t matter to God. He puts everyone in Christ on equal ground. Equality doesn’t necessarily mean “sameness” because we all have unique features, but what we equally share is access to the same Holy Spirit that lives on the inside of us. There’s not a different Holy Spirit for women than there is for men. Blacks and whites, Jews and Gentiles have the exact same Holy Spirit. God made <i>humans</i> after His image and likeness, and entrusted us with authority and dominion. Jesus elevated the status of all who were denied access under the law; so regardless of your gender, race, or class, you can receive the Holy Spirit and be a beneficiary of His promises and inheritance.

Renewing our minds and ridding ourselves of oppressive thinking allows us to embrace each other’s gifts, assignments, and functions, as well as our diverse blend of cultures because we are all one. Christians are to function together because we have this God-given ability to demonstrate to the world the example of what unity looks like. Once we understand this, we can then recognize that ALL are privileged, not just certain groups. The divisive laws under the Old Testament are no longer applicable to us because Jesus came to fulfill those laws; He came to give us all equal access to God. The bottom line is that we all need each other to fulfill our purposes. God loves the gifts and distinctions He created in ALL of us, and since we are made in His image and likeness, we should all do the same—love and respect each other.

We’re not divided and we’re not competing. We’re not trying to ignore the needs and oppressions of one another, but we are bearing each one’s burdens. We are concerned about one another. We recognize each other’s strengths, as well as areas where we’re weak; as a result, we provide support to each other. This way the body of Christ can be strong and model love, forgiveness, oneness, and unity to the world. I believe these fundamentals are so pivotal in the present time concerning race, rule-keeping, and religion. There’s a lot of “religion,” yet at the same time we must demonstrate a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. As we grow in Him, we move past desires to use religion to fuel political or other flesh-driven ideals, and we conclude that above all else, it’s really all about where we stand in our Christ-relationship as individuals. He knows our thoughts and motivations because, for Him, it’s personal.

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