Tuesday, August 28, 2007
News Flash. The latest edition of the 9Marks ejournal is now available. This edition focuses on issues of race and ethnicity. Master Yoda (aka as our fellow elder) delivers with articles entitled ‘Starting the Conversation with Earth, Wind and Fire (an exchange with him and Jonathan Leeman) and Many Ethnicities, One Race.
The rest of the Jedi council (Rickey Armstrong, Anthony Carter, J. D. Greear, Sam Lam, Eric C. Redmond, Juan R. Sanchez Jr., Kevin L. Smith, Ed Stetzer, Justin Taylor, David Wells, & Jeremy Yong) convenes to discuss ’Are Whites Getting It’.
The edition continues with reviews of significant books on the subject as well as valuable contributions concerning our Asian and Hispanic brothers and sisters.
In light of a number of recent (and necessary) discussions concerning race and ethnicity within the reformed community this is a welcome and timely edition of the 9Marks journal.
As you read please consider keeping the following in mind and prayer:
God created humanity as one race and it’s important to remember that along with our ethnic distinctions there is still one human race.
However since Adam’s rebellion humanity has been divided into two races. One race follows the way of Cain. This race is bent on gratifying their own natural cravings, following Satan God’s ancient enemy and in creating a world, culture and society that stands opposed to God’s person, worship, word, will, ways and salvation in Jesus Christ. The other race is of Jesus Christ. Those who are of this race have been graciously given new life and now exist as one people that consist of many ethnicities. This race lives to spread godliness throughout God’s creation in the Name of Jesus Christ.
Ethnic sin is no stranger to the Christian church. Acts 6, 11 and Galatians 2 give clear evidence that racism is among the sins we (yes we) will struggle against. That should remind us that 1) racism or partiality cannot be ignored or too easily dismissed. This sin like the sins of greed, idolatry, pride, lust, lying, selfish ambition and factionalism must be fought against. Partiality like other sins is dangerous to the church because it rends the fabric of our fellowship. 2) The church is called to strive and strain to ‘Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace‘. Thus whenever we enter the discussion of ethnicity our goal should be to bring a greater amount of unity and not disunity or division to God’s church.
The church of our Lord Jesus has a providential opportunity to demonstrate the transforming power of the gospel in a world ripped by ethnic hostility and hatred. We cannot and will not do that however if each ethnicity that makes up God’s people is determined to pursue it’s own ghettoized agenda apart from the rest of the church.
Above all brothers and sisters remember we are one family. And even though ethnic tension, sin and hostility plagues the church we will reach forward toward unity by remembering who we really are. Whether Asian, Indian, Arab, Black, White, Jew, or Hispanic we are one people that comprise one body with one Spirit called to one hope. We serve one Lord, confess one faith and have one baptism (whether immersion or effusion) through which we’ve publicly identified with one Father and His people.
To Him Who Loves Us…