In his book, What a Way to Live, Dr. Tony Evans gives reference to a conversation between Dr. Billy Graham and an interviewing network. Dr. Graham was asked, “If you could eradicate any problem in America, what would it be?” Dr. Graham answered very quickly and very directly as he replied, “The racial division and strife in our nation.”
Jesus said, “If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand” (Mark 3:25). The division caused by racism all across the world is a major hindrance intended to separate and render ineffective the body of Christ and its mission on earth of making disciples of all nations. The bride of Christ is to be actively making disciples amongst people of every tribe, tongue, language, and race.
Racism does not exist because of social differences; it exists because there is sin in the heart of man. Racism is a sin issue, not a social issue. Therefore, the body of Christ should lead the way in every reconciliation effort and set the standard for spiritual and social healing in our nation. Christ, our Lord, died to redeem us from sin and the effect of sin. This price He paid was meant to yield a holy nation, bearing His pure and holy image on earth.
Racism by definition is hatred toward someone God created. Racism is the belief that someone is superior to another individual whom God created. It is being prejudice toward someone God created and is a blatant sin against God Himself.
Why must reconciliation happen?
- Reconciliation confronts and defeats hypocrisy. Romans 12:9 says, “Love must be without hypocrisy. Detest evil; cling to what is good.” God loves all whom He has created, and He encourages us to do the same. Reconciliation confronts and defeats the division of people based on the differences in color and culture.
- Reconciliation confronts and defeats self-righteousness. Romans 2:11 says, “There is no favoritism with God.” Believing that one race is better than another is self-righteousness.
- Reconciliation encourages the body of Christ to freely obey the Great Commission. Mathew 28:19-20 says, “Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you.” The word “nations” refers to the diverse ethnicities in the world.
- Reconciliation encourages the body of Christ to obey the Great Commandment. John 13:34-35 says, “I give you a new command: love one another. Just as I have loved you, you must love one another. By this all people will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”
- Reconciliation honors God’s design. Acts 17:26 says, “From one man He has made every nationality to live over the whole earth and has determined their appointed times and the boundaries of where they live.” It was God’s design that all of humanity be created from one man’s blood.
- Reconciliation honors God’s redemptive plan. Revelation 5:9 says, “And they sang a new song: ‘You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because You were slaughtered, and You redeemed people for God by Your blood from every tribe and language and people and nation.’” God’s redemptive plan includes people from every ethnic group.
- Reconciliation honors God Himself. John 3:16 says, “For God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.” God’s act of love was for the world, not for one race.
We are the image bearers of Christ in the earth. Therefore, reconciliation is not an effort to be made—it is our calling to be lived out. Our calling is confirmed in 2 Corinthians 5:18-19: “Everything is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation. That is, in Christ, God was reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed the message of reconciliation to us.” In conclusion, racial reconcilation is possible since we have been reconciled to Christ.