Want racial justice in the church in America? Many high-profile black evangelicals have joined a rising collective voice pouring condemnation upon all white evangelicals for racism. The election of Donald Trump as POTUS seems to have leveled a heavy blow to racial unity in the American church, and the bleeding seems to be gaining volume.
Dr. Anthony Bradley, Thabiti Anyabwile, Jemar Tisby, Tyler Burns, Christena Cleveland are a few of the black Christian leaders who regularly denounce white racism, not on an individual level as something each of us may be guilty of; no, to these folks, your light skin means you are a participant in the oppression of people of color in America…
…unless I’m totally misunderstanding, which is possible. On this episode, I read out several of these people’s statements on white racism in evangelicalism. You listen, you tell me. Am I right that this is a Marxist play going on in our midst?
If white racism is endemic, then black Marxism is too. How about we drop both of the blanket labels and talk as individuals? The following tweets are a small sample of what I see all day every day: white Christians are a part of the problem, and must be confronted using Marxist categories of class strife.
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Adam interviews Lutheran pastor Brian Kachelmeier, a frequent guest on Lutheran Public Radio’s flagship program, Issues, Etc. (which you all need to check out).
We talk about Genesis, especially the Tower of Babel in chapter 11, and how Christ in all of Scripture is relevant to even questions of race and ethnicity in 2017.
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Can a Christian and an Atheist have a cordial dialogue about religion, worldview, and hot political issues? Probably not normally, but Dan and Adam are superhuman! Well no, but seriously we gave it our best shot – here’s an in-studio dialogue about our two different worldviews, and how we might apply the atheist hypothesis to the issues of race.
I did my best to be fair and welcoming to my guest. Our goal was to seek as much neighborly common ground as we could find without necessarily jamming into a debate. I wanted to make my case that atheism necessitates a type of non-moral human society wherein racism makes perfect sense. Dan later wrote to me to reply to this contention (which he heard raised by Jonathan Fisk in episode 29). Here’s his message:
“Just listened to the podcast with Rev Fisk. I think I’m just starting to understand your approach to race. I hope that in our discussion I provided some diversity of opinion from a secular / progressive / left / liberal perspective. Although I don’t call myself a social justice warrior, I think they have some legitimate concerns even as I share some of your complaints about a certain dogmatic approach to radical egalitarianism.
But let me offer a response to a question posed by Mr. Fisk, “If Christ is not being preached as being risen from the dead, what reason do you have for not being a racist?”
Because cooperation is a critically important adaptation for human survival. If you consider racism as an irrational antagonism toward those that are different, then it clearly hinders cooperation between groups.
This may not be the reason that you reject racism, but I’m grateful that you do.”
So there you have it. We continue to try to understand each other’s worldview, and hopefully set an example for the audience in how two men of very different beliefs might converse and explore for the truth. There is much more to be said between Christian and Atheist camps, and perhaps Dan and I will have that opportunity.
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