Racism

With all that’s happening, we feel compelled to say something. Let’s start by defining discrimination, prejudice, and types of racism.

Discrimination is differential, negative, and unequal treatment of a group or a person belonging to that group.

Prejudice is a negative attitude that prejudges and misjudges others. The basis for this attitude is frequently defined along racial and ethnic lines. A Hispanic who dislikes a white person for the reason that he or she is white is prejudiced. Prejudice is a belief about someone or something that is unreasonable, not based on fact.

Racism is the combination of both prejudice and discrimination—whether in attitudes, actions, or policies—with the intent of oppressing, causing harm to, or dehumanizing another group. Overt racism is easily identified. Covert racism is subtle. Avoiding interaction with others out of disdain for their cultural group is racism.

Having defined these things, we now need to discuss why racism is a sin and offensive to God.

“10 BIBLICAL REASONS RACISM IS A SIN AND OFFENSIVE TO GOD”
Gospel Coalition - Kevin Deyoung 
  1. We are all made in the image of God (Gen. 1:27). Most Christians know this and believe it, but the implications are more staggering than we might realize.
  2. We are all sinners corrupted by the fall (Rom. 3:10-20; 5:12-21). Everyone made in the image of God has also had that image tainted and marred by original sin. Our anthropology is as identical as our ontology. Same image, same problem. We are more alike than we are different.
  3. We are all, if believers in Jesus, one in Christ (Gal. 3:28). Our first and most important identity is, Christian. We are more alike than we are different.
  4. Separating peoples was a curse from Babel (Gen. 11:7-9); bringing peoples together was a gift from Pentecost (Acts 2:5-11). The reality of Pentecost may not be possible in every community–after all, Jerusalem had all those people there because of the holy day–but if our inclination is to move in the direction of the punishment of Genesis 11 instead of the blessing of Acts 2 something is wrong.
  5. Partiality is a sin (James 2:1). When we treat people unfairly, when we assume the worst about persons and peoples, when we favor one group over another, we do not reflect the God of justice nor do we honor the Christ who came to save all men.
  6. Real love loves as we hope to be loved (Matt. 22:39-40). No one can honestly say that racism treats our neighbor, as we would like to be treated.
  7. Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer (1 John 3:15). Sadly, we can hate without realizing we hate. Hatred does not always manifest itself as implacable rage, and it does not always–or, because of God’s restraining mercy, often–translate into physical murder. But hatred is murder of the heart, because hatred looks at someone else or some other group and thinks, “I wish you weren’t around. You are what’s wrong with this world, and the world would be better without people like you.” That’s hate, which sounds an awful lot like murder.
  8. Love rejoices in what is true and looks for what is best (1 Cor. 13:4-7). You can’t believe all things and hope all things when you assume the worst about people and live your life fueled by prejudice, misguided convictions, and plain old animosity.
  9. Christ came to tear down walls between peoples not build them up (Eph. 2:14). This is not a saccharine promise about everyone setting doctrine aside and getting along for Jesus’s sake. Ephesians 2 and 3 are about something much deeper, much more glorious, and much more cruciform. If we who have been made in the same image, born into the world with the same problem, find the same redemption through the same faith in the same Lord, how can we not draw near to each other as members of the same family?
  10. Heaven has no room for racism (Rev. 5:9-10; 7:9-12; 22:1-5). Woe to us if our vision of the good life here on earth will be completely undone by the reality of new heavens and new earth yet to come. Antagonism toward people of another color, language, or ethnic background is antagonism toward God himself and his design for eternity. Christians ought to reject racism, and do what they can to expose it and bring the gospel to bear upon it, not because we love pats on the back for our moral outrage or are desperate for restored moral authority, but because we love God and submit ourselves to the authority of his word.

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